If you aren't one for harsh, unforgiving corners in your living room, you should take a look at the Samsung HT-X715 DVD home cinema in a box, which doesn't feature a harsh edge anywhere on its seven-part system. Everything is rounded to within an inch of its life, and we love it.
Not only is everything as well rounded as George Clooney, it's also as pretty as Brad Pitt and as refined as Stephen Fry. The X715 is finished in a subtle reddish tone, designed to match its TV you've got, this 5.1 system will sit comfortably next to it.. Fortunately it's a discreet look, so whatever
In the box, you'll find six speakers, which include the two rear and two front channels, a centre speaker and a monster subwoofer. Obviously you get the cables to drive the whole thing too. The hub of the whole thing is the main unit, where Samsung's boffins have hidden all the clever sound-processing and upscaling hardware to achieve the system's goal of making DVDs look that little bit better.
It's not possible to make something from nothing, so we aren't going to pretend this can replace your Blu-ray player. Fortunately Samsung has included an optical input, so you can get surround sound from an HD disc player, a games console or even from a digital TV receiver.
It's also worth pointing out that this system features Bluetooth, so you can listen to music from a phone or other device wirelessly. Neat -- but probably not audiophile quality.
We're certainly impressed by the styling of the Samsung HT-X715, and we'll be reviewing it properly really soon, so keep an eye on the DVD area of our reviews section. It's available soon for around £350. In the meantime, here are some pictures to soothe your eyes. -Ian Morris
Update: Read our full.
The centre speaker is reasonably compact, and will almost certainly sit neatly under any TV and blast out its wonderfully clear dialogue.
Here's the massive subwoofer that comes with the system. It looks rather like a gigantic black toaster. If you try to put bread in this bad boy you'll end up with nothing but disappointment and some crumpled slices of raw Hovis.
The front effects speakers are designed to stand on a table. They aren't big enough to be floor standing, but they do also offer the opportunity of wall mounting.
The rear speakers are much smaller. They're designed to sit on a bookshelf, and can be wall mounted if you so choose. There's also an option to make the rear speakers wireless, but you'll have to pay more for that.
Here's the back of the main unit. As you can see, the speaker outputs are a proprietary type, which is likely to make changing or upgrading the cabling tricky. You can either output the video via component, composite or HDMI. You can also see the wireless upgrade port here too, for de-cabling the rear speakers.