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LG LHB979: LG's flagship 2009 home theater system includes a host of extras

The LG LHB979 has built-in Blu-ray and boasts online video options, Mark Levinson audio, and extra HDMI inputs.

LG LHB979
LG

Unlike Panasonic and Samsung, LG didn't offer any home theater systems with built-in Blu-ray players in 2008. No problem: the company gets to hit the ground running in 2009 with fully loaded Blu-ray models like its flagship home theater system, the LHB979. The 5.1-channel system takes its design cues from last year's DVD-only LHT888, with champagne-glass front-tower speakers and smaller rears that can be connected wirelessly (obviating the need for front-to-back speaker wires in the room). LG boasts that the LHB979 is "tuned by renowned audio expert Mr. Mark Levinson," but we'll have to wait until we audition the final shipping model to determine whether that marketing hype translates into actual sonic performance.

LG

In addition to the requisite integrated iPod dock, the LHB979 includes support for streaming from online Netflix, CinemaNow, and YouTube. The other big extra is the inclusion of two HDMI inputs, so the LHB979 can be used to toggle audio and HD video between external sources such as DVRS, cable/satellite boxes, and game consoles. Look for the LG LHB979 to hit stores in May 2009 (price TBD).

Note: This post has been updated from the original version with some corrections on product specs.