Sony’s STR-DG1000 “designed to optimize Blu-ray disc”

June 1, 2006

SonySony unveiled several new products today, including LCD’s in the BRAVIA range and several more with the WEGA moniker. It was the announcement of a new surround sound receiver however that caught my attention.

Sony’s STR-DG1000 is described as “Designed to Optimize Blu-ray Disc” keep in mind the quoted text is Sony’s, not mine. So I thought to myself hey cool, someone’s finally put Dolby Digital Plus and DTS-HD decoding into a receiver.

Nope, apparently that’s not what “designed to optimize Blu-ray disc” means. Being the inquisitive sort I am, I went over to SonyStyle for further clarification. Same spiel there “Sony unveils first AV receiver designed to optimize Blu-ray disc, other HD sources”

Ok, now I’m really scratching my head, what do they mean by “first”. There are several receivers on the market right now with HDMI 1.1 support, capable of decoding a PCM stream at 96kHz/24bits, so this must not be what they mean either.

Sony’s press release also states The STR-DG1000 receiver has several HD enhancing features, beginning with:

“dual HDMI active intelligence, which automatically detects and receives the best possible video and audio signals from connected devices. This all-digital path from source to display also handles 1080p resolution and up to eight channels of uncompressed audio.”

Maybe they mean “first” for Sony, browsing through SonyStyle.com I see several other A/V receivers with dual HDMI inputs, maybe its the “automatically detects and receives the best possible video and audio signals from connected devices” part they mean is a first.

Again it may be a Sony first but my year old Marantz receiver defaults to the highest quality available source, I’m lost here, what am I missing?

The receiver does feature ‘dual’ HDMI inputs, 120watt, 7.1 surround decoding, S-video and component video up-conversion, multi-room audio output and an optional XM radio module. The STR-DG1000 retails for $800.00.

Listen, my stance on Blu-ray aside I’m not anti-Sony. I happen to think they make some of the best displays available. As a matter of fact if 10k was to suddenly drop into my lap, I’d have a new Sony projector hanging in my living room tomorrow.

What I am against however, is misleading marketing-speak that only serves to confuse the average consumer, who doesn’t have enough time to thoroughly investigate the techno-babble behind these claims.



Posted by Bryan Greenway | | Filed Under Surround Sound


Comments

  • Jim Mills

    From another Sony ad:
    “With 1080p video reproduction capability and up to eight channels of uncompressed ‘master quality’ audio, this is the only 7.1 AV receiver designed to complement the Sony Blu-ray Disc player.”

    I first thought Dolby Digital HD and DTS HD by this wording. Only think I could gather this could be true, is if the Sony Blu-ray player decodes the HD audio and outputs it via 8 separate channels. Either way, I hate inaccurate marketing.

  • Jim Mills

    From another Sony ad:
    “With 1080p video reproduction capability and up to eight channels of uncompressed ‘master quality’ audio, this is the only 7.1 AV receiver designed to complement the Sony Blu-ray Disc player.”

    I first thought Dolby Digital HD and DTS HD by this wording. Only think I could gather this could be true, is if the Sony Blu-ray player decodes the HD audio and outputs it via 8 separate channels. Either way, I hate inaccurate marketing.

  • B.Greenway

    You know what Jeff,

    After reading your comment again, your right. I’ve now re-read the press release carefully several times, the wording seems very deliberate.

    The word optional doesn’t appear one time in that press release. It does indeed seem that if you want this receiver you’re going to be subscribing to XM.

    I really don’t know what to say to this one….

  • B.Greenway

    You know what Jeff,

    After reading your comment again, your right. I’ve now re-read the press release carefully several times, the wording seems very deliberate.

    The word optional doesn’t appear one time in that press release. It does indeed seem that if you want this receiver you’re going to be subscribing to XM.

    I really don’t know what to say to this one….

  • Jeff Riley

    The word is not module, its model….as in, if you want this model receiver, you are required to buy an antenna and subscribe to the XM service. I’m sure the XM tuner card is built into the receiver and is not an optional or removeable “module”.

  • Jeff Riley

    The word is not module, its model….as in, if you want this model receiver, you are required to buy an antenna and subscribe to the XM service. I’m sure the XM tuner card is built into the receiver and is not an optional or removeable “module”.

  • B.Greenway

    Jeff,

    I’m 99% sure that’s just poor wording on Sony’s part. I’m sure it was meant to read something to that effect of “XM reception requires the purchase of the optional XM module”

    I’d be blown away if Sony forced you to purchase a XM module; if that was the case they would have just built it in and charged accordingly. Otherwise why call it a module? Module implies separate or optional.

  • B.Greenway

    Jeff,

    I’m 99% sure that’s just poor wording on Sony’s part. I’m sure it was meant to read something to that effect of “XM reception requires the purchase of the optional XM module”

    I’d be blown away if Sony forced you to purchase a XM module; if that was the case they would have just built it in and charged accordingly. Otherwise why call it a module? Module implies separate or optional.

  • Jeff Riley

    I’m not sure why everyone seems to be missing the part of the official Sony press release that says…

    “The model requires the purchase of an XM Connect and Play antenna and radio subscription.”

    Which I interpret to mean that if you want this receiver, you must additionally buy an XM antenna and subscribe to the XM service, wheather you want sattelite radio or not. I’ve seen sattelite TV receivers with the same type of requirement.

  • Jeff Riley

    I’m not sure why everyone seems to be missing the part of the official Sony press release that says…

    “The model requires the purchase of an XM Connect and Play antenna and radio subscription.”

    Which I interpret to mean that if you want this receiver, you must additionally buy an XM antenna and subscribe to the XM service, wheather you want sattelite radio or not. I’ve seen sattelite TV receivers with the same type of requirement.

  • whodisbe

    This type of marketing is why I switched away from Sony Receivers, and the only reason I even have a Sony Rear Projection is because I found it for half price on ebay. Its also why so many family members, and friends of the family call me for their purchases.

    The “help” at the retails outlets just spits out jargon, and reads the tags already available in front of products, throw in the marketing babble and its just one huge mess.

  • whodisbe

    This type of marketing is why I switched away from Sony Receivers, and the only reason I even have a Sony Rear Projection is because I found it for half price on ebay. Its also why so many family members, and friends of the family call me for their purchases.

    The “help” at the retails outlets just spits out jargon, and reads the tags already available in front of products, throw in the marketing babble and its just one huge mess.

  • westcott

    I agree with you. Sony should stick to display technology and let those who care about audio and video components make AV receivers and DVD players unless they are willing to dedicate the resouces necessary to match the quality and reliability of their older displays.

  • westcott

    I agree with you. Sony should stick to display technology and let those who care about audio and video components make AV receivers and DVD players unless they are willing to dedicate the resouces necessary to match the quality and reliability of their older displays.