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CES 2020 News: Panasonic announces SC-HTB01 gaming speaker

Game-changer?

by Andy Bassett

Panasonic shows off its SC-HTB01 gaming speaker which appears to take plenty of design and technology cues from a typical TV soundbar. So, just how much of a crossover is there?

Developed by Panasonic in concert with Japanese video game developer and publisher Square Enix, most well known for the popular Final Fantasy, Dragon Quest and Kingdom Hearts games, this speaker is clearly aimed at gamers who like their big-screen gaming experience.

For gamers playing on a TV, their existing soundbar might reasonably be expected to serve up the audio goods, but the SC-HTB01 has extra tricks up its sleeve for gamers in the form of multiple gaming modes to enhance the gaming experience.

And for those who choose to use the SC-HTB01 with a gaming monitor, the enhanced sound field and features could well be a step up from headphones or a simple stereo set up. 
The three gaming modes are Role Playing Game (RPG), First Person Shooter (FPS) and Voice. The RPG and FPS modes provide accurate sound location and allow users to hear subtle sounds such as footsteps thus enabling players to enjoy a sense of realism and intensity as if they’re inside the game world. Advanced settings meet specific criteria for an ideal gameplay experience in the latest instalment of Final Fantasy XIV.

Voice mode enhances human voices and further contributes to the immersive experience.

In order to deliver a superior gaming speaker, Panasonic has combined Dolby Atmos, DTS:X and DTS Virtual:X technologies. The resulting ‘3D stereophonic technology and acoustic space’ adds extra expression within the height of the sound field adding to the overall feeling of audio envelopment when added to the conventional front, right and left surround-sound channels.

The SC-HTB01 has a total output of 80 watts split between its 2.1 channel 3-way speaker system which uses two full range drivers, two tweeters and an 8cm woofer plus a dual passive radiator. It features a compact and integrated design with a width of 43cm and a height of 5cm, and users can enjoy games and movies by simply placing the speakers in front of a PC monitor or TV without obstructing the view.

The SC-HTB01 is also compatible with 4K/HDR pass-through allowing users to play and view 4K compatible games and streaming content. Bluetooth connection and high resolution audio playback is also available, providing users with various sound sources playback

The SC-HTB01 gaming speaker will be available in June 2020.

Are there any AVForums gamers who are interested in what this speaker might have to offer or is your current setup already providing an adequate gaming experience? Why not let us know what you think in the discussion thread?

Source: Press release
Image Source: Panasonic
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