If you're yearning for a home-cinema setup but aren't sure how to put one together, or you don't fancy using all the money from your child's trust fund to pay for one, LG thinks it has the solution for you.
The HT902TB is a DVD player with 5.1 speaker system, and at around £250, it's aimed at people who want to enjoy surround sound at home, but don't want the major hassle or expense of setting up a full-blown AV receiver.
The HT902TB comes in just one box. While it is a rather large box and the carry handles are quite painful to use, it's still nice that everything is packed into a reasonably small space.
The kit is made up of four 'tall boy' speakers, each of which stands on the floor. There's a centre speaker, which is placed on or beneath your TV, and a subwoofer for those room-shaking bass effects. The amplifier is built into the DVD player, so the main unit is nice and compact.
The player itself is attractive, and apart from basic play and navigation controls, a simple display and a volume control, there's nothing to distract your eye. At the rear, there are speaker outputs for all six channels of sound, the HDMI output for video and auxiliary inputs for hooking up other equipment to the amp.
The LG has surprised us by creating what is, in effect, everything a film fan needs in one box. Okay, this won't suit you if you're a bona fide audio snob with a subscription to Which Lossless Audio Codec? magazine, but if you want an all-in-one system for getting 5.1 surround sound, this fits the bill.
Firstly, the DVD player promises support for MPEG-4 and DivX. We tested this claim, and are pleased to report that we had no problems with material we found online. There is also support for DivX ondemand, although we have yet to see very much interesting material be made available by this system.
The 5.1 portion of the system can decode both Dolby Digital and DTS surround. This means you'll be able to get the best surround performance from all of your DVDs. DTS offers high quality sound, as it uses less compression, so it's nice to see support for this format.
When we plugged in the system, we weren't exactly expecting great things. While the unit and speakers are stylish, the speaker wire provided is a little weedy, and the way the speakers connect -- they snap into a stand, which contain speaker connectors -- didn't seem all that sturdy.
Setup is easy enough: everything you need is in the box and it's very obvious how it all fits together. You get a reasonable amount of speaker cable -- not enough for very large rooms, but sufficient for small living rooms and bedrooms.