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I was bought this stereo setup for my 21st birthday after months of listening to mates opinions and reading reviews. The stereo consists of 4 main units the amplifier, thetape deck, the cd/dvd multichanger and the radio tuner. Straight from the box it is quite easy to setup, with the manual giving clear and simple step by step instructions. The wires for the two main speakers are not particularly long, however this was not a problem for me as i have a realitivly small room.
The dvd/cd player is a 5 disc changer and looks good from the second you remove it from the box (as does the rest of the stereo). and the playback of disks is very good, even on my 10 year old relic of a tv the movies and imaghes appear clear and crisp. Not only this but the un it also plays almost every kind of disk imaginable, from .mp3 disks for music (gets around 4 albums on a cd), right through to .jpg for images that have come straight from a camera or the internet. The unit also play DIVX files, these are one of the latest file compression formats available on the internet and are fast becoming one of the most popular. I have not come across a disk as of yet that the unit is unable to play.
The level of sound that the stereo produces is excellent, when in dolby digital playback mode the surround sound is exceptional and in movies you actually feel like you are part of the action as bullets whizz by your ears and voices come for all around you. The base is excellent at all levels, and even at full volume the sound is still brilliant and not distorted.
The stereo is very easy to use, the remote is well planned and so is the interface on the front of the system almost every function can be accessed from either set of buttons, and the intuitave use of a shift key keeps the remote control simple and well laid out. Initial setup of the system is aided by the colour coded wiring and intellegent use of the manual to explain everything. All in all setup should take around 20-30 minutes.
The remote control is solid and immediately feels of the high quality that you would expect from a brand like technics, buttons are clearly labelled and are well spaced even for my fat fingers! the remote takes 2 x AA batteries and they have an excellent life even when used constantly. The remote, i am told also has an extremely good range however i have not tested this for myself as the room that my unit operates in is rather small.
The manual that is supplied with the stereo is nothing short of excellent, with clear, simple easy to follow instructions and diagrams. It guides you through the steps of initial setup and many frequently encountered problems.
The stereo as a whole includes many features such as RDS as well as the dolby digital surround sound that it supports. The range of file formats that the unit supports is vast, as i have already mentioned earlier in this review. There is a good range of inputs avaliable for use as well. I personally have my TV, Ipod, Xbox 360 and minidisc players all connect to the system. The one thing that i do feel is missing is a digital optical input for some of the newer pieces of equipment.
I have owned the unit for around two years now and have had absolutely no problems with it at all, i also have 3 friends who own the same model, all of whom agree that it is incredibly durable and hard wearing. My unit has moved house with me 3 times and has also coped with extensive use by my four year old son. If that isnt a testement to its durability, then nothing is!
When i bought this unit it cost around £500 and i am aware that you can pick them up today for around £350, this is excellent value and i would recommend the system to anybody thinking of purchasing a home cinema or stereo system.
Overall i feel that the unit is one of superior quality, in the past i have always opted for a seperates system made up of units that could reflect my musical habits, but this system has changed my opinion of them totally.