Sony BX77 Audio 

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In the early summer I saw a range of Sony audio and photography items. I have already told you about both the photography items I selected. Here is a rather neat stack system that for me stood out as the item to request.

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Nothing flashy just a black box but everything works as it should and as you would probably expect it to do no nasty surprises.

It is 31x21x14cm with leads plugged in the rear so this is the space you will require, however if you place it on a shelf the 21cm height figure will need extra space for any iPod you might insert as this dock is on the top of it.

The speakers are 14x24x20cm and each have a 1.5metre lead to connect to the rear of the main unit. While there are sockets for both AM, FM and DAB aerials there is a strange interconnecting push over aerial lead for the last two however strange it sounds it does work rather well giving excellent reception on both wavelengths.

The unit consists of CD, the three radio bands, iPod and Auxiliary. These are toggled via the remote control. There are buttons on top of the unit but once on standby you only need to go to the unit to change the CDs as everything else is on the remote.

The rear of the unit has the hard wired mains lead on the left side with the other connections on the right side with the area in the centre jutting out a little more meaning that the items fitting in protrude only marginally beyond the centre part of the unit.

An AM loop aerial is provided and this fits at the top of the column of connectors. The FM connector is next then the four clips for the two pairs of speaker wires and finally the DAB aerial. However as stated the DAB and FM aerials are linked, it looks strange but it does give good reception on both bands while the loop aerial covers AM.

The large Operating Instruction sheet shows how to connect what and where. It also shows you how to set the clock and while this is not displayed either when on or off you can tap a button the remote to show it briefly. There is a sleep timer mode and this does not actually require the clock to be set to function, strange but true.

I am surprised that time is not set automatically using radio signals but this is one of the things Sony does in its own way.

There are 16 square buttons arranged along the top of the unit but the only action that must be carried out from them is to open the CD tray on the front of the unit and as you have to be there to remove/insert the CD this is fine.

There is a two line white on grey 8x2cm 16 character a line display that tells you any information required. With DAB or FM this will normally show the station you are currently listening to. With CD this shows time of track and track number. You can play CDs of MP3 and there can be up to 254 sub folders and each can contain up to 511 MP3 files.

The iPod dock can play whatever is on the iPod and the dock can also charge your iPod for you. The small 29 key remote control works intelligently once you are used to having to access most modes via sequential presses.

A nice unit with great sound quality and it does all you would want with perhaps the proviso that an alarm function would have been nice.

Doing my Internet searches found the Sony CMT-BX77DBi at a best price of £130 from the first link below.

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OverallSony BX77 Audio rated 88 out of 100

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