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Tech

Sony introduces new premium 3D Blu-ray players and A/V receivers

Having covered some of its bases with recently announced mainstream-priced 3D home theater components, Sony is now covering the rest with a new line of premium products that will be known as the Elevated Standard, or ES, lineup of 3D Blu-ray players and A/V receivers.
Written by Sean Portnoy, Contributor

Having covered some of its bases with recently announced mainstream-priced 3D home theater components, Sony is now covering the rest with a new line of premium products that will be known as the Elevated Standard, or ES, lineup of 3D Blu-ray players and A/V receivers.

While "premium" doesn't mean the type of units that cost thousands and thousands of dollars, Sony says the ES series is designed for custom home theater installations and promises that it will "seamlessly integrate" with third-party control systems from the likes of AMX4, Control4, Creston and others. Not only do the ES receivers have built-in Ethernet connections, but they're also four-port Ethernet hubs. There's also an inevitable app that lets you control the receivers via your iPhone or iPod Touch.

The first receivers sporting the ES label are the STR-DA3600ES, STR-DA4600ES, and STR-DA5600ES, all of which feature 3D pass-through and DLNA Client capabilities. The STR-DA4600ES and STR-DA5600ES also offer CAT5e output to a second zone -- with 1080i upscaling of sources, if necessary. The receivers have Automatic Phase Matching technology that can correct phase differentiation between front, center, and surround speakers, while the STR-DA5600ES has Digital Cinema Auto Calibration EX to optimize audio after adjusting for both the distance and angle of the speakers in your setup.

The ES lineup also includes the BDP-S1700ES 3D Blu-ray player, which comes with an IR input for those third-party control units as well as built-in 802.11n Wi-Fi to tap into Sony's Bravia Internet Video apps. You can also control the player with the BD Remote iPhone app -- an Android version is on the way according to Sony. The BDP-S1700ES will be available next month for $400.

You'll pay much more for the receivers. Arriving next month, the STR-DA3600ES and STR-DA4600ES will be priced at $1,100 and $1,500, respectively. The STR-DA5600ES comes in September for $2,000.

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