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Is high-performance wireless surround sound truly possible?

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A complete review of Yamaha's new YSP-4100 and YSP-5100 Digital Sound Projectors
By, Dave and Steve Hartfelder of Diamond Case Designs, Inc

Background - Don't Forget The Sound

As a home theater fan you've given into your entertainment urge and purchased a beautiful new high-defintion television. To truly show off your set you've probably already upgraded your cable or satellite service to HD and purchased a new blu-ray DVD player. You are set to show off your new "home theater" to your friends and family. Or are you? You may be missing a very critical element - the sound!

A true home theater experience is based around not only a beautiful television but also an enveloping surround sound system. The speakers built into your TV just don't cut the mustard and can't pull you into the action. This fact was stated in no uncertain terms when George Lucas was quoted as saying "the sound and music are 50% of the entertainment in a movie"(1).

Surround Sound Options - Wired or Wireless?

Traditionally, the only way to outfit your room for surround sound invovled purchasing an audio/video receiver, a surround sound speaker package, and running speaker wire throughout the room. While this continues to be a high-performance solution it is often not practicle for several reasons; too costly, too difficult to install, impracticle to run wire, or the desire not to see wires and speakers all over the room.

Given these limitations Yamaha came up with an innovative wireless solution known as sound projection. With a sound projector the different channels of surround sound are "beamed" from a single component to project off the walls, windows, furniture, or other surfaces of your room to create an enveloping and realistic environment without running speaker wire.

It is important to note that sound projectors are very different from sound bars. Several companies have tried to copy Yamaha's innovation by building sound bars that change the characteristics of the sound to make your ears think the sound is coming from a different direction when in reality it is not. I have had the opportunity to personally install a number of these sound bars and they do not sound nearly as effective or realistic as a sound projector particularly if you sit anywhere other than the sweet spot.


Click above to see a 1:30 video talking about the premium sound built into Mitsubishi Unisen TVs.

A true home theater experience is a combination of excellent picture and high-performance sound. This is typically achieved by choosing the right high-defintion television, audio/video receiver, and surround sound speaker package. Once chosen the speakers are carefully placed throughout the room and wires run throughout connecting the electronics together. While the end result can be impressive it can also be costly, unsightly, and difficult to achieve due to the difficulty of running wire through walls or ceilings (without destroying your home).

If you'd like to explore a simpler solution I urge you to take a close look at Mitsubishi's exclusive line of LCD flat panel TVs known as Unisen. Unisen HDTVs combine stunning picture performance with high-performance sound. In fact, the TVs literally have 16-18 speakers physically built into the set! These speakers provide five channels of home theater performance in a simple, clean, and easy to operate package. With Unisen TV it is like you are purchasing a television, receiver, and speaker package, all in one. The Diamond series sets even have a few unique tricks up their sleeves, read on to find out more.

Mitsubishi Unisen TVs

Mitsubishi Unisen LCD TVs
Sound Beams Bouncing Off Walls
This graphical representation illustrates the five channels of sound Mitsubishi's Unisen TVs are able to beam throughout the room to create a realistic and enveloping surround sound environment.

Mitsubishi has used their long standing dominance in TV manufacturing to create an entirely new category of TV with built-in high performance sound! Dubbed as "Immersive Sound Television", the exclusive new Unisen line of TVs have 16 to 18 speakers built in to provide a true surround sound experience rivaling that of a traditional audio video receiver and five channel speaker package.

How Do They Work?

All Unisen TVs use 16 individually amplified speakers each with their own Dolby Digital Surround Sound Processor. They work together as a team and fire with slight timing differences between them to direct "beams" of sound to locations throughout the room. These "beams" represent the five distinct channels of sound necessary for surround reproduction (right, left and center front + right and left rear). Using this proprietary technology, the TV is able to create an enveloping surround environment without the need to run any speaker wire!

To further enhance the home theater experience the Unisen series TVs can be connected to a powered subwoofer to provide the low frequency bass that really highlights a high performance theater experience.

By integrating the surround sound system inside the TV, you can save quite a bit of money. It is no longer necessary to purchase a separate audio/video receiver and speaker package. This eliminates the hassle and expense of running speaker wire all over your room. Not to mention the cluttered eyesore that results from having individual speakers dispersed throughout the room. Finally, by not using a high powered receiver, you are saving energy by eliminating a component that would otherwise have to be plugged in. Mitsubishi Unisen TVs truly are a unique and easy solution for enjoying high performance surround sound.

52" Mitsubishi Unisen Series Television LT-52249
This image shows a close up of the Mitsubishi LT-52249 LCD Television. Mitsubishi's exclusive design features 18 built-in speakers to provide true surround sound performance right out of the TV!

OK, I'm Convinced They Sound Great, How Do They Look?

While Mitsubishi completely set a new bar for television audio performance, they certainly did not skimp on video. In fact, all of the new Unisen TVs offer full 1080P resolution along with the latest HDMI 1.3a inputs so they can directly connect to high-definition sources such as Blu-Ray DVD, Cable, Satellite, video games, and Apple TV. Of course you can still connect older devices such as laser disc players or VCRs.

With a choice of 120 Hz or 240 Hz processing, Unisen TVs are able to display high speed motion and fast action without a hitch. A completely new panel design provides the best black levels and contrast we've seen to date on an LCD TV.

I Already Have A Surround Sound System, Why Do I Need This TV?

Aside from the great sound system built into the Unisen TVs, they look absolutely fantastic. You are going to enjoy excellent HDTV performance from an established name brand.

Mitsubishi's Unisen TVs can provide an element of simplicity that a traditional surround system can not. We have seen many surround sound systems that are too difficult or confusing for some family members to use. With a Unisen TV, there is only one component to turn on. It is a perfect alternative for the technically challenged or those that simply want to watch the news or their favorite sit-com and still enjoy high quality sound right out of the TV.

In addition, the 46" and 52" Diamond series Unisen TVs feature a completely cool new feature known as VUDU (see below for more information). This industry first feature literally gives you the ability to rent thousands of movies directly through a graphical on screen interface built into the TV, completely cool!

What Sizes Do They Come In?

Mitsubishi's Unisen TVs are available in 40", 46" and 52" sizes. In addition to the Unisen series of TVs Mitsubishi has a home theater line of TVs available in 60", 65", 73", and 82" screen sizes.

Can I See Them In Your Showroom?

Absolutely. We are happy to personally demonstrate these awesome TVs. During our Cash for Clunkers event we will have examples of all screen sizes (40" - 82") available for demonstration. Click here for a map to our showroom.

VUDU - Movie Rental Store Built Into Your Diamond Series Unisen TV

Click above to see a 2:30 video of the Vudu movie interface on the Mitsubishi Unisen series TVs.

Wouldn't it be cool if you could take an entire store full of movies and build them into your TV? That is exactly what Mitsubishi has done with their 46" and 52" Diamond series Unisen TVs. By utilizing the VUDU movie rental service you can simply connect your Mitsubishi TV to a high speed internet connection and you'll instantly have access to thousands of movie titles at the push of a button. Through the beautiful on-screen display you will be able to surf cover art, read descriptions, review actors, ratings, and movie lengths. In fact, most movies you can even watch a preview to ensure you choose just the right flick. Most titles are available in high definition and are sure to look fantastic on your Mitsubishi HDTV. Once you've found the perfect movie you can simply rent it using your remote control. Rental prices typically run a few dollars similar to traditional video stores.

Click for larger photos

For More Information on Cash for Clunker TVs or Mitsubishi Unisen TVs

If you have questions, would like to schedule a demonstration, or simply want to arrange to drop off your old TV or e-waste please feel free to call us at 714-630-8100, ask for Steve or Dave Hartfelder. If you are out-of-state feel free to use our toll-free line at 800-616-5354.

Diamond Case Designs, Inc. - 655 N. Shepard St. - Anaheim, CA 92806 - (800) 616-5354 -

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