Sony BDV-E380 review
The smart design, excellent interface, superb sound quality and extra features make this the ideal all-in-one system for anyone who wants something straightforward and compact
Review Date: 23 Aug 2011
Price when reviewed: £350
Reviewed By: Tom Morgan
Take one look at Sony's BDV-E380 and it's clear to see the influence of a certain games console on its design. The curved main unit, touch-sensitive buttons and glossy black finish are all reminiscent of the PlayStation 3. The minimalist design and glowing white LED strip look fantastic, and the speakers aren't far behind.
Each one stands vertically, with a slight tilt that looks great from almost every angle. The provided speaker cables plug into the main unit using proprietary connections, but end in regular speaker wire so you could extend them without too much hassle. However, with the rear satellite cables measuring 9.5m, you probably won't need to.
There are plenty of other sockets on the back of the main unit, including two HDMI inputs for connecting games consoles or a set-top box, optical and coaxial digital audio, analogue phono, composite video and a single USB port. A radio antenna lets you listen to FM stations, and a calibration microphone helps to set up the speakers correctly for the best possible audio. There's an external iPod dock included, and it's used to play videos and photo slideshows as well as music.
At the front, a second USB port to the right of the disc tray can be used to connect a flash drive or external hard disk for multimedia playback. All the image and audio file types we tried were supported, but our MKV and DivX files refused to play.
As well as local playback, the E380 can also stream content from a PC or laptop using DLNA. There's no integrated wireless adaptor, so you'll either have to connect to your router using the Ethernet port or buy the optional Wi-Fi dongle (part number UWA-BR100, £47 including VAT from Amazon).
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