Sony announces first HD-optimized A/V receiver

Sony today officially announced the STR-DG1000, their first high-definition compatible A/V receiver designed with Blu-ray Disc in mind, will retail around $800 in August through Sony’s online store. It appears no mention is made regarding HD-DVD audio support, though a blanket statement about detecting the best possible audio signal may provide some hope. Read below for the full release.

Press Release: Sony Electronics Inc.
Whether it’s 1080p pass-through, eight channels of uncompressed audio, smooth video switching, simplifying set-up of a surround sound system, and automatically adjusting performance, this new A/V receiver is optimized for a full high-definition experience.

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.

“Blu-ray Disc(TM) technology will help redefine home theater by creating an unparalleled experience from source to display,” said Jeff Goldstein, vice president of marketing for Sony Electronics’ Home Products Division. “This receiver is the final link in the HD chain, showcasing the beauty of Blu-ray Disc’s imagery and the immense power of its sound.”

Additionally, the unit can simplify multi-channel surround sound set-up for a perfectly balanced home theater experience with Sony’s Digital Cinema Auto Calibration (DCAC) technology. This helps customize the receiver’s audio performance based on its room environment. Simply plug in the supplied microphone and the DCAC automatically adjusts for speaker placement, distance and delay based on information collected by the microphone and processed in the receiver.

The receiver also offers a redesigned on-screen display for set-up and control, as well as a powered multi-room function for two-channel enjoyment in an adjoining room along with XM Connect and Play(TM) satellite radio capabilities.

The 7.1 channel audio/video receiver has 120 watts of system power per channel. The receiver supports HDMI switching and the up-conversion of composite, S-video and component video sources to HDMI, minimizing the number of connections between the receiver and display.

The model requires the purchase of an XM Connect and Play antenna and radio subscription. Once you connect the antenna and subscribe to the service, you can navigate XM stations displayed on the front panel of the receiver.

Sony’s new receiver also features a Portable Audio Enhancer feature so you can plug virtually any portable audio player into the receiver. The receiver then applies digital signal processing on the compressed audio, improving its clarity and depth by adding information to the audio signal that had been removed during compression.

The receiver also offers a powered multi-room capability. While you enjoy 5.1 channel sound in the main room, the remaining two channels can be routed into a second room that allows you to independently play any device connected to the receiver. The A/V receiver also comes with assignable HDMI, component and optical inputs, as well as five inputs and two outputs for A/V, and three inputs and one output for audio.

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