When Klipsch updates a line, Klipsch does it big. The latest update to the Reference II series includes 17 new speakers. That includes five floorstanding speakers, four bookshelf speakers, four center channel speakers, and four surround speakers.
Just the words "home theater system" can be an instant turn off. They can put you in mind of those $500 boxes that contain a few cheap speakers and a DVD player with an integrated amplifier. It's the sort of phrase that dredges up images of Best Buy and Walmart.
This fall, Definitive Technology will be releasing a total of nine speakers in the Bipolar series, including four new SuperTower floorstanding models. The BP line has gotten an update, especially the floorstanding models which sport all new mids, woofers and tweeters. Additionally, they're using new amplifiers and a redesigned enclosure. It's like a complete speaker redesign.
The M80 from Meridian is an unassuming shelf system that packs quite a few features. The exterior is fantastic looking and is clad in British leather. You can choose from three colors – ivory, obsidian, and chestnut. According to Meridian, each leather cover is made by hand, and takes an hour to complete.
Not all home theater in-a-box setups are created equal, and when they're coming from a company like Denon, you can be sure they're a step or two up over what you'd find on the shelves at the typical brick and morter.