I've had this system for a little over a month now and wanted to give a quick review. Overall I am very pleased with the performance and would recommend it to any one with an anynet capable Samsung TV. The more I use it, the more i like it. Digital cable sounds great in surround sound and the system fills my medium sized living room with no problem. The room is about 20' by 15' with cathedral ceilings. Once all the speaker levels were set properly, I can watch movies around 21-23 and TV around 15-18 and both sound great. The system goes up to 45 for reference. Watching my old DVDs is like watching a different (better) movie with the sounds this system produces.
Compared to my old sony surround system, which probably cost more 5 years ago since I bought all the components separately, this is sleeker, has smaller speakers (no more front towers!), and sounds much clearer and I don't have 3 remotes anymore! I can't compare it the any of the onkyo or yahama systems but I would guess for the money and style you can't beat this system.
Here is my complete system:
-Samsung - HT-AS720
-RocketFish wireless rear speaker sender and receiver
-Samsung - LN-T4061F 40" 1080p 60mhz
-Sony progressive scan DVD player (pretty old)
-HTPC running XP Pro (considering going to Vista Ultimate for media center)
- NZXT Hush Case (extremely quiet)
- 8600GT Video Card 512mb
- Diamond 24 bit 7.1 sound card with Dolby Digital Live
- 320 GB sata HD
- AMD 64 X2 5600
- 2 GB 800mhz ram (may double that shortly)
- 20X DVDR
- N Wireless card (connecting to rest of home network)
- bluetooth keyboard and mouse
I've always had Sony products but the price of the TV was good and the TV looked just as good, if not better than the comparable Sonys. Since I got the Samsung TV, I liked that the receiver matched the TV so I went for it. Once I got a HDMI and an optical cable connecting the TV and receiver the anynet feature was great. At first I was disappointed because I thought I would be able to control all the functions of the receiver with the TV remote. You basically can only turn the receiver on and off and control the volume with the anynet function, it does automatically select the correct source though. After using it for a while I realized that I never pick up the receiver remote anymore. Once all the setting are correct on the receiver the anynet functions are all you need.
The wii is connected via component cables directly to the TV. Cable TV goes directly to the TV. The HTPC video connects to TV via DVI-HDMI and the sound card connects via the optical input on the TV. All the audio then feeds to the reciever via the optical out of the TV to the receiver. The only time I have to select the source on the receiver is when watching DVD's through the stand alone sony DVD player, which is rarely because I tend to watch DVD's through the HTPC since the scaler on the video card in the HTPC is much better than the TV's scaler. I know that feeding all the audio through the TV than to the receiver is not ideal for audio performance but the convenience of using just the TV remote with the anynet feature far out weighs the performance loss. It still sounds great.
The one issue that I have to comment on is that I'm getting a popping sound from the rear left speaker. Unfortunately I haven't narrowed down what is causing this. It only happens once in maybe about 3 hours of audio but it sounds bad and I'm afraid it may damage the speaker. My first guess is that the wireless speaker kit may be causing it, not the receiver itself. Has anyone else had this problem while running the RocketFish wireless rear speaker kit? I'm going to double check all the wiring to see if that corrects the problem.
As far as Blue-Ray or HD DVD, I'm waiting till one wins out or till they come down in price. I've seen a LG drive that reads both for the computer but its still several hundred dollars. I'm gonna try my best to hold out till the price drops a little more....
I'll post some pics soon.