- Great design, Surround sound
- Surround sound listening volumes, No component video
An excellent CD/DVD player and speaker package whose virtual surround sound is the clear standout feature, although it is not equipped with a component video output.
Price$ 899.00 (AUD)
Best Deals (Selling at 1 store)
Kenwood has produced a compact home theatre system in the AX-7. It provides excellent virtual surround and great sound quality for both movie and music playback in a fairly small package. However we would have liked to see the inclusion of a component video output, as the video quality lags behind the excellent audio produced by the amplifier and speakers.
The package is made up of a CD/DVD player, a dedicated amplifier and two speakers, with all the components looking particularly stylish. Small and neat in design, the amplifier and player are finished in silver with blue LED lighting, coupled with classically designed wooden speakers. The compact design lends itself very well to those who are chasing a small virtual surround setup and don't want five or six speakers scattered around the room. The remote is also well laid out, making the sometimes tricky menu system easier to navigate than using the controls on the DVD player.
The system is compatible with MP3, WMA and JPEG files stored on a disc, as well as regular CDs and DVDs. Music was impressive to say the least, with everything from pop to classical to rock music sounding excellent. The clarity across the sound spectrum was very impressive, with great distinction between intricate instruments and melodies in the middle and upper registers. For a system with no dedicated subwoofer, the bass was adequate, and after a little fiddling with the manual equaliser and D-bass settings we achieved a fairly strong balance.
We ran the system on a number of scenes from The Matrix to test its virtual surround capabilities and again had great results. The lobby shoot-out scene sounded accurate with the array of bullets and effects panning around the room. We did however find the absence of a subwoofer more noticeable here, with rumbling explosions and car exhausts not quite having the same impact we're used to. The only downfall in these tests was that the volume in surround mode was not overly impressive. We were watching parts of movies on the highest volume during testing, and although this was still loud, we would like to be able to push it further.
An auto calibration microphone is included, and a number of equalisation options are available. Simple bass and treble levels can be adjusted, or you can play around with the full seven-band equaliser. A handy inclusion is the 'flat' button to remove any equalizing adjustments and return to default settings in a flash.
There are a number of connections to be made when setting up this system, but all wiring is clearly labelled, making it a fairly simple task. That said, the speaker wires are quite short, only just stretching far enough for us to adequately position the unit. Those with larger lounge rooms may struggle to take full advantage of this system. The CD/DVD player hosts all the inputs and outputs, and while optical audio is present, we were disappointed to see that component video is not. This means that while the audio is of an extremely high quality, the video, which is limited to just composite or S-Video, is a little lacking, and this was evident in our testing, with DVDs not appearing nearly as crisp as they have on other systems.
Overall, this is a neat little package from Kenwood that has excellent sound quality, but is let down by the lack of component video connections for the DVD player. If you can live without this, the sound quality makes this a worthwhile purchase.
Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Review: TCL C1 series 4K TV
- 2 Sony 75-inch UHD TV (X9400C) review: Sony and Android are a winning duo
- 3 LG 55EG960T OLED UHD TV
- 4 Panasonic Viera UHD TV review: good hardware, fragmented software
- 5 Microsoft Lumia 640 review: Honouring Nokia's legacy
Best Deals on Good Gear Guide
Latest News Articles
- Google quietly kills its Nexus Player as Chromecast overshadows Android TV
- How to customize the Apple TV (fourth-generation) home screen
- YouTube's Content ID program finally provides for ad revenue during disputes
- Sony cranks up optical disc storage to 3.3TB
- Hands-on with Surface Hub: Microsoft's huge tablet has some productivity holes
GGG Evaluation Team
First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.
For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.
The Fujitsu LifeBook UH574 allowed for great mobility without being obnoxiously heavy or clunky. Its twelve hours of battery life did not disappoint.
The screen was particularly good. It is bright and visible from most angles, however heat is an issue, particularly around the Windows button on the front, and on the back where the battery housing is located.
My first impression after unboxing the Q702 is that it is a nice looking unit. Styling is somewhat minimalist but very effective. The tablet part, once detached, has a nice weight, and no buttons or switches are located in awkward or intrusive positions.
- FTJunior Web Developer | CBD | Digital AgencyVIC
- CCApplication System EngineerACT
- FTSenior Team Leader Applications SupportACT
- CCSecurity Clearances Vetting Services OfficerACT
- FTPerformance Test AnalystNSW
- CCOperations Systems Support ManagerNSW
- CCSenior Business Analyst, Contributions TaxNSW
- FT.NET DevelopersQLD
- CCOracle Siebel Administrator - JULY STARTACT
- FTSenior Network Engineer - Australian Systems Integrator - Immediate interviewNSW
- FTNetwork EngineerNSW
- CCTransition Manager / Project ManagerQLD
- CCInfrastructure and Cloud Project ManagerVIC
- CCSenior IT Security Specialist-SANS, ISC2, ISACA, ITILNSW
- FTTechnical WriterACT
- CCData Migration Quality Manager- SAP ECCNSW
- CCSenior Business AnalystVIC
- CCOracle Fusion SOA/BPEL DeveloperVIC
- CCContract Programmer (HTML/JAVA/SQL) 160525/P/013Asia
- CCService Provider Manager - DesktopVIC
- CCOracle Application Administrator - July startACT
- CCTechnical Business Analyst, SuperannuationNSW
- CCTest Analyst / Test LeadNSW
- FTOPEN _ ASAP_Technical Specialist COEACT
- CCData Engineer (Java, Scala, Scripting, Hadoop, Spark)NSW