Style and substance are not always the happiest of bedfellows. And this easy-on-the-eye Philips 2.1 cinema system falls right in to the aforementioned trap.
This system undoubtedly looks the part. The main unit is from the B&O school of design, with a sliding disc that's only missing movement responsive control (as found on B&O products). Still, the remote does the job, even if we found our control was a little sluggish responding to commands from time to time.
Set up is fairly quick, and indeed a touch limited on the audio side, while picture menus are more familiar, even if a large immovable menu makes adjustments a little trickier than normal.
The two speakers and main unit connect to the large subwoofer via dedicated cables; the subwoofer provides the main unit's power, too. In terms of connections we have an HDMI out – capable of sending a 720p/1080i signal – plus USB and MP3 player inputs.
In terms of performance, we're not exactly blown away. While the picture is detailed and colourful, with a decent balance, there's a fair amount of noise introduced. Audio, while big and broad, suffers from an over-bearing bass, poor integration and a harsh, hard treble.
More after the break
This Philips unit will appeal to some, but it's not one for all.