In every category we review, there are always a few products that stand out over competition. For home theater in a box systems, we found such a product in the Samsung Smart Home Theater HT-D6730W. It fuses an integrated Blu-ray player with internet-streaming capabilities and top-notch speakers capped with twin tower speakers to produce a home-theater experience that nearly no product equals or surpasses. Its quality and features earn it our Top Ten Reviews Silver Award for being an outstanding home theater in a box.
There are many things users are willing to forgive in a home theater system. If it's hard to set up, users will let that slide; if the controls are counterintuitive, users will adjust. However, a sub-par picture is something users won't abide. The Samsung Smart Home Theater HT-D6730W provides a crisp, clear HD picture for a number of reasons.
First and foremost is its integrated Blu-ray player. Incorporating a Blu-ray player into the AV receiver is one of the main features we looked for when created our side-by-side comparison chart. The reason it's so important is that it's the only way to guarantee optimization between the player and all the unit's various setting and speakers. Home-theaters systems that require you to route your picture through a third-party player add several layers of steps and frustration that stem from connecting a player to an AV receiver.
The Blu-ray tray on the Samsung Smart Home Theater HT-D6730W also plays DVDs. However, those discs don't contain HD video. Therefore, by themselves, they are incapable of utilizing all the pixels available on an HD television or monitor. This home theater system employs 1080p upconversion technology to remedy this problem. This feature transforms standard-definition images found on DVDs and other media and scales them to fit on an HD screen. This doesn't actually make the pictures HD, but the pictures still look great.
Further on the video front is the Samsung Smart Home Theater HT-D6730W's ability to display 3D video and images. This home theater provides 3D active-shutter glasses. Theaters running 3D movies use these same glasses. Therefore, you can watch movies like "Avatar" in all their 3D glory.
Of all the sources the Samsung Smart Home Theater HT-D6730W draws video from, the most forward thinking is the home theater's internet-streaming options. We are quickly moving into a world where silver discs are dying and content is migrating to the cloud. This home theater has a number of options integrated into its user interface that allow you to stream movies, videos and TV shows from whatever device your AV receiver is connected to.
Speaking of the user interface, the GUI provided by the Samsung Smart Home Theater HT-D6730W is among the most intuitive and accessible of all the home theater in a box systems on our side-by-side comparison chart. The GUI grants you access to the features and functions of nearly every media device you connect to the home theater system.
As with any product in this category, video is only half the story; the other half is sound. This half comprises nearly all of the Samsung Smart Home Theater HT-D6730W's physical components. In the box of this home theater system, you'll find the AV receiver, a single center speaker, two front speakers, two satellite speakers and two tower speakers.
The logical locations for these speakers in a room are usually intuitive. If you're having trouble discerning where each speaker should go, consult Samsung's Feng Shui Your Setup page on its website to get a better idea of which speakers carry which channels and the optimum place to put them in the room.
The stars of the speaker show are the Samsung Smart Home Theater HT-D6730W's twin tower speakers. These speakers push simple surround into a truly cinematic experience. When added to the rest of the speaker array, the tower speakers elevate your living room from a place where you watch TV into a mini screening room worthy of your favorite movies and TV shows.
Samsung optimized the Samsung Smart Home Theater HT-D6730W for every version of Dolby Digital Sound. Movies, television and videos nearly all utilize one of the following sound standards: Dolby Digital Sound, Dolby Digital Plus, Dolby Pro Logic II, Dolby True HD or DTS. This home theater is optimized for every single one.
Nearly any media device designed and built in the last 30 years in compatible with the Samsung Smart Home Theater HT-D6730W. This is largely due to this home theater's vast connectivity array. Of course, it has all the old analog favorites of years gone by, such as component, composite and coaxial. It also has every digital input we look for in this category.
The Samsung Smart Home Theater HT-D6730W has two HDMI ports that enable you to connect dual HD devices to your home theater. Furthermore, Samsung designed an iPod cradle to work with this home theater system. If you have a movie or TV show stored on the iPod in your pocket, or if a friend happens to bring one over, just stick the iPod or iPhone in the cradle and watch the content quickly and easily.
Finally, the Samsung Smart Home Theater HT-D6730W has a USB HOST slot. This port reads content on almost any device that connects via USB. However, it's primarily intended for things like thumb drives and external hard drives.
We mentioned earlier that the Samsung Smart Home Theater HT-D6730W streams content straight from the internet. It accomplishes this by integrating service-specific apps into the home theater's GUI. Services such as Netflix, Pandora and Hulu are all available right from the screen.
Additionally, the Samsung Smart Home Theater HT-D6730W provides apps for popular social-networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter. Other online features and services are also available from the home theater's GUI.
Of all the help and support options for home theater systems on our side-by-side comparison chart, Samsung's support is arguably the best. Not only does the company provide excellent phone and online support, but it also offers tutorials (such as the afore-mentioned Feng Shui guide) on how to set up your system in a manner that is optimized for whatever room you want to turn into a home theater.
We don't have anything to complain about when it comes to the Samsung Smart Home Theater HT-D6730W. It truly delivers what it promises in every department. Excellent video and sound combined with internet-streaming capabilities and Samsung's guidance for set up make it an almost unbeatable system – almost.
The twin tower speakers of this home theater provide an authentic cinema experience.
Navigating all the features within the on-screen GUI takes some getting used to.
There's not much we don't like about this system; it's a solid buy at a good price for the features.