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Panasonic SC-HT900

5-disc DVD home theater system

Item # 133SCHT900

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Our take on the Panasonic SC-HT900

Here's a sleek and stylish DVD home theater system from Panasonic. The SC-HT900 comes with slender front and surround "tall-boy" speakers — placed atop the perfectly matched stands (included), they sit at just the right height for enveloping surround sound performance. But the SC-HT900 isn't just a looker — it follows through with advanced movie and music performance, including ultra-high-resolution DVD-Audio playback and an incredible 700 watts of total system power!

Here's a sleek and stylish DVD home theater system from Panasonic. The SC-HT900 comes with slender front and surround "tall-boy" speakers — placed atop the perfectly matched stands (included), they sit at just the right height for enveloping surround sound performance. But the SC-HT900 isn't just a looker — it follows through with advanced movie and music performance, including ultra-high-resolution DVD-Audio playback and an incredible 700 watts of total system power!

The 5-disc DVD/CD changer/receiver stands less than 3" tall for easy, unobtrusive placement. You get Dolby Digital® and DTS® decoding for DVDs, and Dolby Pro Logic® II, which creates 5.1-channel sound from any stereo source. The 6-channel amp is housed in the subwoofer unit, dishing out 60 watts for the front and rear speakers, 220 watts for the center channel, and 240 watts for the sub — movie soundtracks and multichannel DVD-Audio discs play out loud and clear. And with a full range of video outputs, you'll get the best picture your TV has to offer, including filmlike progressive-scan video for HD-ready TVs!


    DVD/CD changer/receiver:
  • 5-disc changer with disc exchange
  • plays DVD-Video and DVD-Audio discs, CDs, audio CD-Rs & CD-RWs, and MP3 and WMA CDs
  • built-in Dolby Digital/DTS/Pro Logic II decoding
  • Multichannel Sound Field
  • selectable progressive-scan video output
  • tuner with 15 FM/15 AM presets
  • optical digital audio input
  • 3 audio inputs
  • video output for TV (composite, S-video, component)
  • multibrand-for-video remote
  • 16-7/8"W x 2-11/16"H x 18-1/2"D

  • Subwoofer:
  • 6-3/4" driver
  • ported enclosure
  • 6-channel amp (60 watts x 4 for front and surround speakers, 220 watts for center, and 240 watts for subwoofer)
  • 6-5/16"W x 17-5/8"H x 18"D

  • Front and surround speakers:
  • tweeter and 2-1/2" woofer
  • 9-7/8"W x 41-13/16"H x 9-7/8"D (with included stands)

  • Center speaker:
  • tweeter and dual 2-1/2" woofers
  • 9-7/8"W x 5-1/2"H x 5-3/4"D (with included stand)

  • System specs:
  • warranty: 1 year
  • designed for use with "Region 1" coded DVDs

What's in the Box:

  • AM/FM/5-Disc DVD-CD changer/control unit
  • Wireless remote control (EUR7623X70)
  • 2 "AA" batteries
  • SB-WA350 Active Subwoofer
  • SB-PC701 Center channel speaker (mounted on a removable stand)
  • Four SB-FS900 Speakers
  • 4 Speaker bases
  • 4 Speaker stands
  • Three 13' lengths of speaker wire
  • Two 33' lengths of speaker wire
  • FM wire antenna
  • AM loop antenna
  • 70" AC power cord
  • 13' Black system cable
  • 58" Composite video cable
  • 8 Silver machine screws (5/8" length)
  • 4 Black screws (3/8" length)
  • 4 Plastic cable clips
  • Operating Instructions
  • Sheet of 10 speaker wire labels
  • Panasonic Customer Care Plan/Product Information card
  • "Notice of Name Change" sheet
  • Product feature card (attached to main unit)

Hands-on research

Product Research

System Overview
Remote Control

System Overview

System Overview: The SC-HT900 is an integrated system that simplifies the task of assembling a home theater system for a bedroom, vacation home, or other small- to medium-sized room by providing an all-in-one solution consisting of a 5-DVD/CD player/preamp/tuner, active sub/satellite system and a multibrand wireless remote control for the unit. The only optional item required is a Television.


SA-HT900 Main Unit: This is the "control center" of the system and includes a 5-disc DVD/CD player, Dolby Digital/DTS decoder, digital AM/FM tuner, 1 optical digital and 3 analog inputs and one line output. It connects to the subwoofer/amplifier via a system cable from which it receives it's power. The unit has a blue LCD (in addition to the On Screen Display) that shows the selected source, frequency when the tuner is selected, and elapsed/remaining time information when a disc is played.

Tuner: This system has a digital AM/FM Tuner with manual and seek tuning. You can store up to 15 AM and 15 FM station presets so that you always have easy access to your favorite stations without having to tune them in manually each time. If you are listening to an FM station in stereo but the reception is weak, you can improve the sound quality by switching to Mono. Note: FM tuning is done in 0.1MHz or 0.2MHz steps and AM tuning is done in 9 kHz or 10 kHz steps.

DVD/CD Player: The unit has a 5-disc carousel DVD/CD changer that will play back DVD-Audio discs, DVD-Video discs, Video CDs (and SVCDs), CDs, finalized DVD-Rs and DVD-RAM discs, finalized audio CD-Rs/CD-RWs, CDs with MP3 and WMA files, and Picture CDs with JPEG files. This unit is also compatible with HighMAT discs containing WMA, MP3 and/or JPEG files.

Progressive Scan Output: This DVD player may be set to output a progressive scan (480p) or interlaced video signal (480i) from the component video output. Progressive-scan viewing requires a TV with a progressive scan compatible component video input.

Audio D/A Converter: This unit features a 192 kHz/24-bit Delta Sigma Digital-to-Analog converter for decoding and playing back high resolution audio sources such as DVD-Audio discs.

Surround Modes:

  • Dolby Digital
  • DTS
  • Dolby Pro Logic II
    • Music
    • Movie
    • Panorama

Multi-channel DSP Modes:

  • Super Surround: adds surround effects to stereo sound
    • Movie: for film-based sources
    • Music: for music sources
    • Party: provides stereo effect regardless of the direction you're facing
  • Sound Field Control:
    • Heavy: adds punch to rock
    • Clear: clarifies higher sounds
    • Soft: for background music
    • Disco: reverberates sound to simulate a dance club
    • Live: makes vocals more alive
    • Hall: expands sound to simulate a concert hall
    • Flat: no effects
  • Center Focus: makes the sound of the center channel seem like it's coming from the TV
  • Seat Position: simulates effect of being in center of the sound field (when prevented by the layout of the room)
  • Multi Rear Surround (M.R.S.): simulates the effect of multiple surround speakers
  • Virtual Rear Surround (V.R.S.): simulates the effect of having speakers behind you (when surround speakers are placed near the front of the room)

Custom Sound Memory: You can store the following sound settings for up to 30 discs so the unit recalls them the next time the disc is played: Dolby Pro Logic II, Subwoofer Level, Center Focus, Sound Field Control, and Super Surround.

Double Re-Master: For DVD-RAM, DVD-Audio, DVD-Video or CD, the Double re-master feature gives you a more natural sound by adding the higher frequency signals not recorded on the disc. It can also enhance WMA and MP3 discs by reproducing the frequencies lost during recording to give you sound closer to the original. There are three levels of effect for DVD/CD: for high tempo (pop/rock), various tempos (jazz) and low tempo (classical). For MP3/WMA the effect levels are light, medium and strong.

MP3/WMA Playback: This unit will play MP3 and/or WMA files recorded in ISO9660 Level 1 or 2 onto CD-R, CD-RW and HighMAT discs. Compatible compression rates are 32-320 kbps for MP3 files and 48-192 kbps for WMA files. The unit will recognize up to 999 tracks and 99 groups. It is not compatible with ID3 tags.

JPEG Playback: This unit will play digital images in JPEG format recorded onto CD-R, CD-RW and HighMAT discs. It will recognize up to 3000 pictures and 300 groups. The picture resolution can be between 320 x 240 pixels and 6144 x 4096 pixels. This unit cannot display moving pictures, Motion JPEG or other motion formats.

HighMAT Disc Playback: HighMAT stands for High Performance Media Access Technology. Co-developed by Panasonic and Microsoft, HighMAT was designed to significantly improve interoperability for digital media content between PCs and popular electronics devices such as CD players, car stereos and DVD players. HighMAT is a digital-media standard that provides a dramatically improved method of storing, arranging and playing back personal digital photo, music and video collections on recordable discs such as CD-RW media. 

Sequential Play: Normally the unit will play the disc in the play position and then stop. When the Sequential Play function is enabled, the unit will play all loaded discs, except for DVDs and JPEG discs.

Exchanging Discs: You can exchange the remaining discs in the tray without interrupting playback of the current disc.

Position Memory: The Position Memory function allows you to mark a position on a disc for recalling at a later time. You can memorize positions on up to 5 discs at a time. Once a position is memorized, you can turn the unit off, change the source, or change discs without clearing the position. When you turn the unit on or reinsert the disc, the unit will display "RESUME". Press the Play button to begin play at the memorized position. The memorized position is cleared when you resume playback.

Chapter Preview: When playing a DVD-Video disc using the Position Memory function, the unit will display the following message when the memory position is detected on a disc: "Press PLAY to Preview Chapters". When play is pressed while the message is displayed, the unit will play a portion of each chapter up to the current one to allow you to review the storyline up to the memory point. Once the memory position is reached, full playback resumes.

Selectable Aspect Ratio/Variable Zoom: You can select an aspect ratio in which the picture is the optimum size to fit your TV screen. The selections include: 4:3 Standard, European Vista (1.66:1), 16:9 Standard, American Vista (1.85:1), Cinemascope 1 (2.35:1) and Cinemascope 2 (2.55:1). You can also make fine adjustments to the aspect ratio by using the variable zoom. The zoom ratio changes from 1.00 to 1.60 in increments of 0.01 and from 1.60 to 2.00 in increments of 0.02.

Display Dimmer: The display can be dimmed to improve video viewing in a dark or dimly lit room.

Sleep Timer: The unit can be set to turn off after 30, 60, or 90 minutes. The timer is canceled if the unit is turned off.


SB-WA350 Active Subwoofer: The SC-HT900 features an active subwoofer with built-in amplification for all of the speakers. The subwoofer uses a 4-ohm, 6-3/4" cone woofer in a bass-reflex enclosure. The woofer is covered by a non-removable light gray metal grille. The subwoofer inputs include a jack for the AC power cord and the proprietary system cable. The subwoofer also has spring clip outputs for the front, center and surround speakers.

"Tall Boy" Front and Surround Speakers: The front and surround speakers (SB-FS900) each have a 6-ohm, 2-1/2" cone woofer and a piezo tweeter in a bass-reflex enclosure. Each enclosure is covered by a non-removable light gray cloth grille. The speakers are designed to be mounted on the supplied matching speaker stands, or directly to the bases for shelf placement. There are keyhole slots for optional wall mounting (hardware not supplied). Dimensions without stands: Height: 21.625", Width: 3.176", Depth: 4.008"

Center Channel Speaker: The SB-PC701 Center Channel speaker has two 6-ohm 2-1/2" cone woofers and a piezo tweeter in a bass-reflex enclosure. The enclosure is covered by a non-removable light gray cloth grille. The speaker is mounted on a removable stand. There are two 5mm threaded inserts on the back of the speaker for use with optional stands. In addition, there are 2 keyhole slots provided for vertical or horizontal wall mounting. Dimensions without stand: Width: 9.834", Height: 3.781", Depth: 3.956"

Video-shielding: All of the speakers, including the subwoofer, are video-shielded, allowing them to be placed near your television without causing picture distortion.

Remote Control

Multibrand Remote: The SC-HT900 comes with the EUR7623X70 wireless remote control, which is pre-programmed to operate this system and a number of functions on other brands of components, including VCRs and TVs.


Amplifier Power:

Channels RMS Output Power FTC Output Power
Front 60 watts per channel
@1kHz, 10% THD
35 watts per channel
@120Hz-20kHz, 1% THD
Center 220 watts per channel
@1kHz, 10% THD
140 watts per channel
@120Hz-20kHz, 1% THD
Surround 60 watts per channel
@1kHz, 10% THD
35 watts per channel
@120Hz-20kHz, 1% THD
Subwoofer 240 watts per channel
@100Hz, 10% THD
150 watts per channel
@45-120Hz, 1% THD

Speaker Frequency Response

Speakers Frequency Response (-16dB) Frequency Response (-10dB)
Front 85Hz-25kHz 90Hz-22kHz
Center 110Hz-25kHz 130Hz-22kHz
Surround 85Hz-25kHz 90Hz-22kHz
Subwoofer 40Hz-220Hz 45Hz-180Hz

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