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Panasonic Unveils 2.1-Channel Blu-ray HT System

9/03/2009 03:12:41 PM Eastern

Secaucus, N.J. - Panasonic unveiled Thursday its
first 2.1-channel Blu-ray Disc home-theater system with virtual surround
sound.

The SC-BTX70, which ships this month at a $1,000 suggested
retail, features an upright silhouette design that is said make a good cosmetic
match for today's flat-panel TVs.

In addition to playing Blu-ray Discs in FullHD, the system offers
a wide variety of other digital media options.

The 2.1-channel system's surround technology is designed to deliver
"realistic virtual 7.1-channel sound dispersed through a wide listening area," according
to Panasonic.

The integrated Blu-ray player supports Dolby TrueHD and DTS-HD with
virtual 7.1-channel surround, and the system's two front speakers feature a new
top-mounted speaker design that is said to expand the listening area.

The speakers are made with rigid, low-density bamboo cones that
Panasonic said delivers "pure sound and crisp dialogue."

Also added is a Kelton-type subwoofer.

A 96-kHz Surround Re-master function enhances the sound quality
of CDs and other sources and is said to raise the quality of the multichannel
audio data on Blu-ray discs and DVDs for "highly realistic sounds."

The system includes a power sliding door that conceals the Blu-ray
Disc player, a universal dock for an iPod, an SD memory card slot, and a USB
terminal for viewing photos and videos taken with a digital still or video
camera.

All system operations can be controlled with a single Viera-Link
(HDMI-CEC) remote from a Viera flat-panel TV.

For video processing and scaling, the system includes an image-enhancing
PHL Chroma Processor Plus and high-precision 4:4:4 technology.

Built-in networking features enable a connection to the Internet
to access the Viera Cast system with online videos from YouTube, Amazon Video
On Demand and Web-based photos on Picasa.

The player also supports BD-Live Profile 2.0 extras from Blu-ray
discs.

The system conforms to Energy Star standards and uses UniPhier
LSI, which integrates all video signal-processing circuits onto a single chip
to lower power consumption.