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Panasonic SC-BTT182 review

Our Rating :
Price when reviewed : £260
inc VAT

A real improvement over TV audio, but don't expect miracles from the small speakers


To put the speakers through their paces, we switched to using Blu-ray discs. For the most part, they coped well, filling our medium-sized test space with sound. We weren’t completely convinced by the 3D surround effect – it’s designed to eliminate the need for rear and centre speakers, and although they did extend the soundstage slightly, it won’t fool you into thinking you have speakers behind you.

Without a centre speaker, speech occasionally got lost amidst the action during busy scenes, but for the most part it was clear and easy to comprehend. It was also during the hectic moments of Casino Royale’s opening chase scene that the limitations of the system became clear. At louder volumes, the satellites struggle to keep the high end from sounding too sharp. The small passive subwoofer also lacks the finesse of an active system, making explosions and gunshots sound overblown and boomy.

Thankfully, picture quality doesn’t disappoint, with high definition images that look incredibly crisp and clear. There’s a whole host of options for tweaking picture quality, in both 2D and 3D modes, so even the most demanding cinema fan should be able to get the perfect image with very little effort. The options can all be tweaked while a disc is playing, so you don’t have to lose your place in a film just to adjust the brightness.

If you’ve yet to invest in a dedicated speaker system, the BTT182 can make a massive difference to your viewing experience. Although it lacks true surround sound, the 2.1 setup will be a huge improvement over a TV’s integrated speakers. Audio quality isn’t perfect, and we weren’t sold on the virtual surround effects, but if you’re after simplicity, this is a great first step to a home cinema setup.

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Price £260
Rating ****


HDMI inputs 0
HDMI outputs 1
Component inputs 0
Component outputs 0
Output resolutions 480i, 480p, PAL (576i), 576p, 720p, 1080i, 1080p
Total SCART sockets 0
SCART socket type N/A
S-Video input 0
S-video output 0
Composite inputs 0
Composite outputs 0
Stereo phono inputs 0
Stereo phono outputs 1
Coaxial S/PDIF inputs 0
Coaxial S/PDIF outputs 0
Optical S/PDIF inputs 0
Optical S/PDIF outputs 1
Multi-channel input yes
Speaker configuration 2.1
Main unit end speaker connection type proprietary
Speaker end speaker connection type spring terminals
Other connections 10/100 Ethernet, USB, SDHC memory crd reader
Wired network ports 1x 10/100
Wireless networking support optional 802.11b/g/n


Surround sound formats Audyssey DSX, Dolby Pro Logic IIz, Dolby TrueHD, DTS-HD Master Audio
Optical drive yes
Supported playback disc formats CD, CD-R, CD-RW, DVD, DVD+R, DVD+RW, DVD-R, DVD-RW, BD-ROM, BD-R, BD-R DL, BD-RE, BD-RE DL
Audio format support MP3, WAV, FLAC
Video playback formats AVCHD, DivX HD, MKV, MPEG 2, MPEG 4, WMV 9, MOV, XVID
Image viewing formats JPEG
Radio FM


Speaker configuration 2.1
RMS power output 520W
RMS power centre N/A
RMS power front 320W
RMS power surround N/A
RMS power subwoofer 200W
Wall mountable yes
Centre speaker cable length N/A
Front speaker cable length 3.0m
Surround speaker cable length N/A


Extras remote control, FM antenna
Size 430x263x47mm
Subwoofer dimensions 145x290x258mm
Centre speaker dimensions N/A
Front speaker dimensions 80x139x71mm
Surround speaker dimensions N/A
Power consumption standby 0W
Power consumption on 28W

Buying Information

Price £260
Warranty one year RTB