With mobile phones in many a teenager’s pocket, there is growing preference to listen to music on earphones and headphones—a trend that has also caught up with people across age groups. It seems the era of listening to relaxing, soul-searching music played on a conventional music system has come to an end. Well, not quite. This reviewer, like many other people, has a strong belief that the sound reproduced by a high-tech home audio system is always great, powerful and crystal clear. Japan’s Sony is the leading player in this arena, a reputation it has maintained for decades with its strong focus on research and development. Its home audio systems and speakers stream music the way artists want you to hear it.
The Sony HT-G700 is a fantastic piece of audio equipment that brings a new level of impressive cinematic-audio environment to any home entertainment set up. In a modern cinema there are speakers all around you, each with their finely tuned sounds combining to make a fully immersive surround sound experience. The HT-G700 can upscale even regular stereo audio to 7.1.2 surround sound— so every TV show and movie gets the surround sound treatment. Basically, it is a 3.1ch Dolby Atmos/DTS:X soundbar that retails for Rs 39,990, a quick look at the finer details of this Sony product.
At our end, setup with the Sony Bravia TV was quick and easy via Bluetooth and HDMI eARC/ARC. The HT-G700 comes with a powerful, wireless subwoofer with a larger cabinet size that delivers a deeper, richer bass sound. The Sony soundbar delivers 400W power output with 7.1.2 surround sound to deliver a theatre like immersive audio experience. It also offers a dedicated centre speaker so that vocals can be heard clearly, whether it’s quick-fire dialogue in your latest Netflix or Amazon Prime Video movie, or the snack video on YouTube. It’s also great for music (streamed via mobile handset from Spotify app), creating a rich, detailed listening experience. In fact, when listening to soothing music from AR Rahman, Jagjit Singh, Pankaj Udhas etc, high-quality music is a given.
Technical-speak, the HT-G700 comes with Immersive Audio Enhancement and Sony’s unique Digital Signal Processing technology which provide a very good surround experience. The finely tuned S-Force Front PRO uplifts sound to fit a wider TV screen (over 55 inch) seamlessly enveloping listeners to relive moments in great clarity and depth. Plus, by selecting the Immersive AE (Audio Enhancement) button on the remote, the HT-G700 can also upscale regular stereo audio to up to 7.1.2 surround sound so every TV show and movie gets the surround sound treatment, as I said earlier. Its three front speakers, combined with unique Sony signal processing, reproduce “vertical” audio, recreating the feeling of being surrounded by speakers for a true home theatre environment.
The sound or audio mode best suited to what you’re listening to can be selected directly via a button on the remote control. It allows you to get deeper into movies with Cinema mode and hear every detail of your favourite tracks in Music mode.
In my assessment, the HT-G700 is a stylish and compact soundbar that delivers pretty good surround sound treatment for TV shows, movies and music—the kind of cinematic surround sound you will experience in a movie hall. When it comes to playing music only, I will strongly recommend this to those who prefer stronger bass and vocal clarity. Overall, a nice little soundbar that will perfectly complement Sony TVs in particular.
3.1ch Soundbar with Dolby Atmos/DTS:X
Wireless subwoofer for powerful bass
Dedicated centre speaker for crystal clear audio
nWireless connectivity with TV, Bluetooth connectivity
400W power output
HDMI and optical connectivity
Estimated street price: Rs 39,990