Panasonic home theater systems reviewed: Blu things come in small packages

CNET reviews Panasonic's Blu-ray home theater systems, finding that they offer solid sound quality at a budget price, but they lack the Netflix streaming found on some similarly priced competitors.

Although the technology debuted in 2006, for many consumers Blu-ray still feels like brand-new tech. That's why home-theater-in-a-box (HTIB) systems like the Panasonic SC-BT200 and SC-BT300 feel like such an incredible deal--with a street price as low as $450 for the SC-BT200, you get a 7.1 speaker system plus a slimline AV receiver with an integrated Blu-ray player.

The biggest knock against both of the systems we reviewed is that that competing HTIBs offer better streaming media options; both the Samsung HT-BD1250T and LG LHB953 have both Netflix and Pandora streaming, which we prefer to the Panasonic's YouTube and Amazon Video On Demand streaming.

On the other hand, both the SC-BT200 and SC-BT300 offer sound quality darn good for the price, with the SC-BT300 sounding slightly better thanks to more power and tall-boy front speakers. Although we haven't done hands-on testing with its competitors yet (coming soon), there's no doubt that Panasonic Blu-ray HTIBs are well-thought-out systems that offer a legitimate home theater experience on a budget.

Read the full review of the Panasonic SC-BT200
Read the full review of the Panasonic SC-BT300

 

Join the discussion

Conversation powered by Livefyre

Show Comments Hide Comments
Latest Galleries from CNET
Best mobile games of 2014
Nissan gives new Murano bold style (pictures)
Top great space moments in 2014 (pictures)
This is it: The Audiophiliac's top in-ear headphones of 2014 (pictures)
ZTE's wallet-friendly Grand X (pictures)
Lenovo reprises clever design for the Yoga Tablet 2 (Pictures)