Las Vegas - Sharp is expanding
its selection of 1-inch-tall adjustable-width soundbars and launching its first
microsystems with Apple AirPlay, Wi-Fi Direct to stream music from DLNA-equipped
mobile devices, and iPad-compatible USB ports.
In all, the company is launching three
new 1-inch-tall soundbars and five microsystems. All of the microsystems feature
iPad-compatible USB port, and two offer AirPlay. The two AirPlay models also
feature DLNA certification and Wi-Fi Direct to stream music wirelessly from
non-Apple smartphones and tablets at a longer range than stereo Bluetooth.
The company is carrying over its
iPod/iPhone-docking mini systems, a current 1-inch soundbar, and the current HT-SB600
3.1-channel soundbar, which at an everyday $299 features Dolby Digital/DTS
5.1-channel decoders, Dolby Virtual Speaker to deliver virtual surround sound,
three HDMI 1.4a inputs, HDMI 1.4a output with audio return channel, wired
subwoofer, and AM/FM.
All of the company's new 1-inch soundbars,
like the carryover $299-everyday HT-SL70, come with replaceable inserts that
expand or reduce soundbar width to match different-size TVs. The inserts can
also be removed to turn the horizontal soundbar into two separate left-right
vertical speakers sitting atop their own stands, said senior marketing manager
The soundbars were designed to be
compact in height so they don't block a TV's IR receiver or the IR blaster that
a 3S TV uses to controls active-shutter 3D glasses, Pleyer said.
The carryover HT-SL70 comes with
two inserts, one to size the soundbar for 46-inch TVs, and the other to size
the bar for 52-inch TVs. It features wired subwoofer, automatic signal-sensing
turn-on, HDMI 1.4a input, HDMI 1.4a output with audio return channel, and
analog mini input. A TV's remote would be used to control soundbar volume via
the TV's variable audio output. The TV could be used for all video switching,
though a cable box or Blu-ray player could also be connected to the soundbar to
pass through video to the connected TV. It's rated at 2x50 watts plus 1x100
watts and doesn't incorporate virtual surround processing.
The new HT-SL75, targeted to
retail for an everyday $299, offers the same features but comes with inserts
for 60- and 70-inch TVs. It's shipping.
The new HT-SL77 soundbar comes with
four inserts to size the bar for 46-, 52-, 60-, and 70-inch TVs. It also adds
wireless subwoofer but otherwise offers the same power and connectivity as the
SL75. It's targeted to retail for an everyday $349 when it ships, likely in
Another 1-inch soundbar, the HT-SL72,
also comes with wireless subwoofer but is packaged with inserts only for 60-
and 70-inch TVs. It lacks HDMI input and output and connects to a TV via analog
mini input and RCA adapter. It's also rated at 2x50 watts plus 1x100.
None of the 1-inch-tall soundbars
features built-in Dolby Digital/DTS decoding dock or 30-pin iPod/iPhone dock.
Thirty-pin iPod/iPhone docks, however,
are standard in five new microsystems, which are also Sharp's first audio
products with Apple-certified iPad-compatible microUSB port on their back panel
to stream an iPad's music and quickly charge an iPad via 5-volt, 2.1-ampere
charging circuit. The microsystems also come with a separate stand to hold an
iPad in landscape or portrait mode. All feature iPod/iPhone dock on top.
Two of the new microsystems are
the company's first one-piece vertical-oriented models. They feature AM/FM,
vertical CD mechanism that hides a spinning CD behind motorized metallic
sliding doors, MP3/WMA decoders, and 2x25-watt amp. The vertical systems are
the DK-KP80P at an everyday $149 and the DK-KP95P, which adds AirPlay and, via
DLNA certification and Wi-Fi Direct, ability to push music from a
DLNA-certified smartphones and tablets other than Apple models. It's targeted
to homes lacking Wi-Fi, including second homes and motor homes. It ships in the
spring at a price to be announced.
Three other microsystems with
iPad-compatible USB port are three-piece executive-style systems, all with
single-CD mechanism, AM/FM, MP3/WMA playback, iPod/iPhone dock on top, 2x50-watt
amp, two-way speakers with dome tweeter, subwoofer preout, and composite-video
The three-piece systems start
with the XL-HF201P, targeted to retail for an everyday $199 and targeted to
ship in February.
The step-up XL-HF301P at a
targeted $249 adds improved drivers and is targeted to ship in March. The
XL-HF401P adds AirPlay, DLNA, and Wi-Fi Direct and ships in the spring.
#CES Las Vegas - Sharp is expanding its selection of 1-inch-tall adjustable-width soundbars and launching its first microsystems with Apple AirPlay, Wi-Fi Direct to stream music from DLNA-equipped mobile devices, and iPad-compatible USB ports.