My initial thoughts were that it looks like a really cool and innovative product, BUT…
FIRST, where is the center channel speaker? I realize that Sony is targeting the HT-A9 system as an add-on to a sale to a BRAVIA television purchase and that their TV’s built-in speaker system would then function as the “center channel”. How good would dialogue sound when used with other brands of television? Will there be an optional add-on center channel speaker?
SECOND, how is a subwoofer merely “optional”? Does Sony really want consumers buying just the four-speaker system, setting it up at home, and hoping they don’t notice the missing bass? I am sure it is to reduce “sticker shock”, as there is apparently a huge psychological difference between $1800 and either $2200 or $2500.
I anticipate BUNDLES being offered that INCLUDE either subwoofer (perhaps model numbers such as HT-A9SW5 and HT-A9SW3), as well as quite a few that also INCLUDE a BRAVIA TV. COMPLETE SOLUTIONS!!!