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Philips Takes On TV Sound

LAS VEGAS – Five new soundbars, two new TV-speaker bases, and the first HTiB-like home-theater systems without Blu-ray players are on tap from P&F, which markets Philips-brand audio and accessories made by Gibson Innovations.

The lineup includes

Zenit: The HTiB-like home-theater systems are the $399 Zenit CSS5530 and $349 CSS5330. The 5330 features three separate speaker cabinets for the front channels, a wired subwoofer, Dolby Digital and DTS 5.1 decoding, one HDMI 1.4 in and out with audio return channel and 4K passthrough, Bluetooth with AptX and AAC, and NFC. The 5.1-speaker version adds wireless surround speakers and wireless subwoofer.

Sound bases: The two new models are the $249 HTL5130 and $599 Fidelio-series XS1. The XS1, designed for TVs up to 65 inches, comes with 3.3-inchdeep subwoofer incorporating two 6.5-inch drivers and two ports configured to allow for vertical placement against a wall or horizontal placement under a sofa. The base itself is slim but packs three-channel speaker array with front and side drivers, Dolby Digital and DTS surround decoding, one HDMI input, one HDMI output with audio return channel, Bluetooth with AptX and AAC streaming, NFC, USB and aux in. The base features a glass top and wraparound metal grille.

The $249 HTL5130 base features a 3.1-speaker system for TVs up to 55 inches, WaveflectoR technology, integrated 4-inch sub, Dolby Digital, HDMI in and HDMI out with audio return channel, Bluetooth with AptX and AAC streaming, NFC, and USB with MP3/ WMA playback.

WaveflectoR creates a wide soundstage without resorting to what the company said was “complicated audio processing” or “expensive speaker arrays” that narrow the sweet spot. It uses angled side-firing speakers and a reflector to deliver reflected and beamed soundwaves.

Soundbars: The 320-watt $399-MAP HTL6145C soundbar features the same thin wireless subwoofer as the XS1 sound base. It’s the brand’s thinnest soundbar to date with a 1.18-inch depth.

The HTL6145C packs six 2-inch neodymium woofers and two 1-inch soft-dome tweeters. The bar also offers Dolby Digital and DTS surround processing, stereo Bluetooth with AptX and AAC streaming, NFC, HDMI input, and HDMI output with audio return channel.

The slim soundbar will also be available with a different wireless subwoofer that can’t be placed horizontally or vertically. This version will be available in black and silver finishes and called the HTL6140B and HTL6140S at $349.

With the $499 HTL7140 soundbar, the company is packing in 5.1 discrete speaker channels with Dolby Digital and DTS surround and proprietary wide-sound technology into what it called its “sleekest” bar with true 5.1 surround to date. Height is 1.5 inches, and depth is 2.1 inches. The 320-watt system also comes with wraparound aluminum grille, side-firing tweeters to enhance ambience, Bluetooth with AptX and AAC, NFC, and one HDMI 1.4 in and out with audio return channel and 4K passthrough. Its wireless 8-inch subwoofer, while not flat, can be positioned horizontally or vertically.

The Fidelio-series soundbar with detachable wireless surround speakers is the $899-MAP B5. It features three speaker channels embedded in the main bar and two Bluetooth wireless speakers that detach from the main bar for placement to the left and right of the listening position. The speakers can also be used as separate battery-powered Bluetooth music speakers when detached.