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Panasonic SC-BFT800 review

Panasonic SC-BFT800
Our Rating :
Price when reviewed : £630
inc VAT

Plenty of class but notably lacking in inputs, WiFi and the level of sound quality we expect at this price

This Blu-ray 3D sound bar is a joy to behold. It’s designed to hang from the wall, and at 62mm deep, it’s as slim as most TVs. The central plastic fascia slides to the left to reveal the disc compartment, while pressing a second Eject button makes it slide to the right to reveal an iPod dock. The on-screen iPod browser is painfully slow so thankfully it’s possible to leave the door open and use the iPod’s own controls. The subwoofer is a sizeable lump, but because its signal is sent wirelessly, it shouldn’t be too hard to find somewhere inconspicuous to hide it.

Sadly, other areas aren’t as elegant. The lack of WiFi is frustrating for something that’s likely to be wall mounted. We found the remote control confusing, with inconsistencies in how certain buttons behaved depending on the selected mode. USB and SDXC sockets are hidden behind a door on the top of the unit, but media format support is limited to DivX, JPEG and MP3 for USB devices and JPEG and AVCHD for SD cards.

Selecting VieraCast brings up a pertinent message that services can change without notice. It currently includes access to Picasa and six video streaming services, although YouTube and Dailymotion are the only ones that are primarily in English. They’re presented over a series of customisable HomeScreens; thankfully, there’s an option to turn off the incessant ping sounds that accompany each push of the remote control.

YouTube support was comprehensive, with the ability to log in and access Favourites, Subscriptions, Playlists and your own videos. It was even possible to rate videos or flag them as inappropriate. Text searches worked well, with reasonably quick input and results appearing as we typed. Frustratingly, though, the transport controls on the remote didn’t work. Navigating the on-screen transport controls using the five-way pad wasn’t as friendly, particularly as there’s no way to rewind or fast-forward videos. Some were stretched to the wrong aspect ratio and lip sync was occasionally out.

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Price £630
Rating **


HDMI inputs 0
HDMI outputs 1
Component inputs 0
Component outputs 0
Output resolutions 480p, 576p, 720p, 1080i, 1080p
Total SCART sockets 0
SCART socket type 0
S-Video input 0
S-video output 0
Composite inputs 0
Composite outputs 1
Stereo phono inputs 0
Stereo phono outputs 0
Coaxial S/PDIF inputs 0
Coaxial S/PDIF outputs 0
Optical S/PDIF inputs 1
Optical S/PDIF outputs 0
Multi-channel input no
Speaker configuration 2.1
Main unit end speaker connection type integrated
Speaker end speaker connection type integrated
Other connections USB, SDXC, iPod dock
Wired network ports 1x 10/100
Wireless networking support optional 802.11n


Surround sound formats Dolby Digital, Dolby Digital Plus, Dolby TrueHD, DTS, DTS-HD HRA, DTS-HD MA Essential
Optical drive yes
Supported playback disc formats Blu-ray, DVD, CD
Audio format support MP3, WAV
Video playback formats AVCHD, DivX
Image viewing formats JPEG
Radio FM


Speaker configuration 2.1
RMS power output 300W
RMS power centre N/A
RMS power front 180W
RMS power surround N/A
RMS power subwoofer 120W
Wall mountable yes
Centre speaker cable length N/A
Front speaker cable length N/A
Surround speaker cable length N/A


Extras remote control, wall-mounting kit
Size 1035x85x188mm
Subwoofer dimensions 250x356x323mm
Centre speaker dimensions N/A
Front speaker dimensions N/A
Surround speaker dimensions N/A
Power consumption standby 16W
Power consumption on 36W

Buying Information

Price £630
Warranty one-year RTB