The Sony HT-CT500 is a step-up version of the earlier HT-CT100, which is a single-speaker audio system. HT-CT500 retains the same basic two-part design that consists of a soundbar and a subwoofer, but sports a wider speaker unit and more powerful on-board 400-watt amplifier. The system delivers a 3.1 effect, with the left, right and center speakers within the soundbar.
The two components weigh only about 24.3lbs in total. The speaker measures at 37.7” x 2” x 3.5” (WxDxH) while the AV receiver with subwoofer measures at 8.3” x 14.3” x 14.7”. The slim loudspeaker design that matches Sony’s BRAVIA W5100 and XBR9 tv series supports full 1080/60p and 24p video, Deep Color™ and x.v.Color™. HT-CT500 is also S-AIR ready, with the ability to transmit wireless audio up to 164 feet for multi-room listening. Meanwhile, a Digital Media Port (DMP) makes connections with other external audio sources easy.
Although it may not be a choice for audiophiles, it may be sufficient for the average user. Generally, users can expect a well-balanced and good-quality sound from the speakers and the subwoofer. Sony practices its stylish designs on this system as well, hence it complements well and may seem like a part of any sleek, modern design flatscreen panel tv especially for those 42” and above.
The included remote control does not control other Sony devices.
Setting up the HT-CT500
There is no need to turn on the system as it wakes from standby mode automatically while the panel display is off. HT-CT500 automatically becomes active in response to signal from a connected unit. The system functions as a device concentrator and users can optionally select settings from the friendly GUI menu to pass HD video signals directly to the HD TV instead of going through the systems video processor first. Non-HDMI connected devices need not worry as they get up-converted by the system with the Faroudjas’ DCDi Cinema® chip.
Sound fields include settings such as standard, movie, drama, news, sports, game, music, jazz, classic, rock, pop, live and p. audio. The effects may be realistic, however, still does not replace a real surround sound experience especially in a bigger room.
Pros and Cons
As it is a Sony innovation, users may prefer to check with dealers to know exactly what model of TV would best couple with this to maximize the experience it can offer.