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Serious Hardware

One box, no fuss,



The DVD is in the process of stomping out the last few persistent embers of VHS. Just about everyone who’s anyone is buying their way into digital picture perfection and theatre surround sound. ADAM MEGENS plugs in the new LG DA5630 theatre in a box, and discovers a smashingly stylish little system that will show the Joneses a thing or two.
The system does require a little bit of labour to set up. You will need to arrange all your speakers, run the wiring for them, plug in the tuner’s antenna, tune in your favourite stations, connect the DVD player to your TV and connect the console to Eskom. Speaker stands are not included, but the speakers can be mounted on a wall.
Basic operations, like playing a DVD or CD, adjusting volume and forwarding or rewinding could not be simpler. The remote control is well laid out and labelled. If you are mildly literate in the field of modern conveniences, you shouldn’t have any problems performing tasks like setting channels on the tuner. Almost all the functions are assisted by on-screen display and, for the rest, you can see what you are doing on the DVD’s display. One may need to have a look at the instruction manual before attempting more complicated tasks though. You might want to find out what exactly your unit can actually do before changing any complicated settings, for instance.
The DA5630 aims to improve on its predecessor, the DA3530, and this it does. The “theatre in a box” concept is aimed at those users who do not demand the optimum outputs of a large component system that will set you back the yearly income of a small country. Rather, what this system has to offer is affordability, convenience, space, and an overall a high-quality product that will more than satisfy the needs of an average home user.nnnnI was a little disappointed, though, in the sound output of the system. The quality and clarity of sound were both great, but with the volume turned up to full and when you come to a really intense part of a movie where the bass is thumping and pumping, the sub-woofer did tend to rumble a bit and distort at times. On the whole, though, I was content with the DA5630’s performance.
Although the packaging is more stylish and modern, it still remains a re-hash of an older model. This should not be construed as necessarily negative, though. The theatre in a box is a great idea, but they are a penny-a-dozen at the moment. On the other hand, that bodes well for the popularity of such a great idea to begin with.
The DA5630 is recommended to retail at around R4 000. I believe that at this price you probably are paying a bit more for a brand name, since there are so many similar products available for about half that price. However, the brand name is backed up with reliability and good service. If you also take into account the price you would be paying for a digital tuner and an amplifier, it seems a more attractive offer aside from the convenience of having them all built into one, very attractive package.
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