Speakers or Golf Balls?

If you're the kind who struggles trying to make your home theater as unobtrusive as possible, Sony's got something just for you. Size does matter in some cases, and in this case, smaller is better. The new Sony HT-IS100 is a 5.1 speaker system,with built-in amplification and decoder. The tiny speakers measure just 1.7-inch square - smaller than a golf ball. Speakers this small aren't big news, but the HD features are. Though they're tiny, the HT-IS100 is packed with features.

Sony2 It has three HDMI inputs with processing for Dolby Digital, DTS, Dolby Pro Logic 11, MPEG-2 AAC and PCM.  There are also some basic signal processing soundfield modes.

Plus, the HT-IS100 isn't the lightweight it looks like. The 32-bit S-Master digital amplifier built into the subwoofer cabinet puts 45-watts per channel to all the satellites, and 100 watts into the full-sized subwoofer. Thank god they didn't try to shrink that component.

This system is slated for a July 15 release in Japan for about $870. As tiny as these speakers are, I wonder how far a center channel speaker would go with a solid five-iron? -Leslie Shapiro

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