Feedback on new Kitchen entertainment system
Posted by: GeeJay on 04 January 2019
Updated my kitchen system over Christmas to Sony KD-49XF9005 4K TV with Sonos Beam soundbar/smart speaker and Sony X800 4K BluRay player (in overhead cupboard);
Very pleased with resultant sound and picture in the Kitchen, with added benefit that Sonos is Alexa enabled, so we can voice control the TV or listen to the radio with a spoken command (useful when cooking). It also connects to the ARC HDMI socket on the TV, so nicely integrates sound using the Sony remote control.
The TV is one of Sony’s new Android sets and although the picture is one of the better LEDs (helped by local dimming tech), the Android system is quite clunky and slow to respond. By stripping out the ‘bloatware’ (loads of unwanted apps), we’ve managed to speed up the response time enormously. One of the useful apps on the Sony though is Kodi, which is used to stream our films and TV series (from our DVD and Blu-Rays) and stored on the NAS, with added benefit of extensive metadata (Big Bang Theory showing on photo above). The VLC player also allows UPNP streaming.
We used to have a Yamaha YAS-101 soundboard before (with a Panasonic TX-L42DT50B panel) and a non 4K BluRay player (Sony S790), and overall, this new system is a distinct improvement all round (even though we can’t use it for our collection of 3D films, but such is the way of the world that modern panels no longer support 3D)!
The Kitchen TV gets significant use by my wife and her sister, who both enjoy (and prefer) watching ‘their programs’ in the Kitchen (Strictly Come Dancing, Doctor Blake Mysteries, Poirot and Pride & Prejustice). We also like to watch series like Friends, Frasier and the Big Bang theory together when we have a meal.
This new system is also our first entry into the Sonos ‘universe’, and I must say that for the size, the Beam certainly behaves very well for such a small size. I briefly considered a Muso as a sound bar, but wall mounted size would have been an issue, and we like to be able to use the worktop underneath. One joy of the Sonos is that with we can stream music from our Naim Core (and NAS) directly into the Kitchen. In fact as an Alexa enabled device, it has the Synology ‘skill’ which allows spoken requests for music (e.g. “Alexa, ask AudioStation to play the album Songs in the Key of Life”). 5 seconds later, Stevie Wonder starts singing!
In case anyone curious about the installation, I used a Sanus VLL61 Wall Bracket using Corefix screws (that go right through the dabbed plasterboard to mount securely to the cinderblock behind) and a dedicated Sonos wall shelf for the Sonos Beam soundbar;
Anyway, I thought I’d share this to open up a discussion on what other A/V systems people use in their kitchen, and also other folk’s experiences with the Sony Android TVs and the Sonos Beam.