Pros No receiver required, HDMI connections, built in FM tuner, amazing surround sound, upscaling.
Cons Large footprint, takes some learning to figure out all the ins and outs. Definitely needs a subwoofer.
Summary I bought my YSP-4000 as soon as they came out. The reasons were these:
1. No place to put rear speakers. My room is set up so that rear speakers were just impossible. This product had great appeal in that I could still have surround sound.
2. No receiver required. With the connections available, this product provides everything you need to hook up your TV, DVD, and various other components without having to buy a separate receiver. HDMI connections are a huge plus.
3. Yamaha makes great stuff.
I first heard the sound projector at Best Buy. I listened to the YSP-1100 and was blown away at the effect. Even though the room was pretty much perfect for the sound reflection, it will still impressive. I walked all around the room and kept hearing things from all corners. Just amazing.
I bought mine off Ebay for $1250, which is about $350 less than anywhere else. Not sure what they are going for now. I used the savings to buy a very nice sub-woofer (HSU VTF-1), which it definitely needs. The YSP was a little bigger than I expected - about 40 inches long and 8 inches high. I don't have shelves to properly mount it and when I set it in front of the TV, it stuck up above the remote control eye on the TV. I ended up boosting the TV up about 4.5" with a riser which was just about perfect.
Set up was easy, however, to really get the most out of your YSP, you need to read the instruction manual and play with the myriad of settings and adjustments. But even with the auto-set up, the performance is impressive. If you have several components to hook up, you will spend a good amount of money on cables. I ended up with 4 components: a DVD player (HDMI input), a cable box (component), a Media Center Extender (component), and a VCR (composite). There is still one HDMI input available for another component if needed. I have a single HDMI out to the TV and the YSP controls all the switching between components. The unit does come with some cables, but they are cheap and not meant to get real performance. And no, it does not come with an HDMI cable.
Once I hooked everything up, I played around with some of the settings to check out the surround sound. All I can say is WOW! The effect is amazing. I put in Jurrasic Park and was very impressed with the way the sound was bouncing around the room. And the T-rex footsteps thumped with the sub-woofer. Very impressive. The picture through the HDMI ports is very impressive as well.
I also tried music through the YSP and was equally impressed. You have the ability to run straight stereo or a simulated surround sound. I thought the FM tuner was a very cool feature as well. It also has and XM radio hookup and you can plug your Ipod into it as well. These are features I have not yet tried.
Overall: The YSP-4000 is an incredibly impressive and versatile piece of equipment. The surround effects are great with a huge amount of latitude to adjust the sound to your liking and also a simple auto setup in case you don't want to fuss with it. The unit appears pricey, but if you factor in that you don't need a receiver, it's cheaper in the long run. Picture quality, sound, and versatility gives this unit a solid 9/10. For situations where surround speakers are not an option, I can highly recommend this piece of equipment.
all around sound range
Cons the settings may be a bit comfusing
Pros REAL 5.1 sound (not "virtual surround sound") VERY versatile, stylish
Cons Does not decode multichannel pcm
Summary This is a great product
3 walls, cluttered with furnature, listening position is against the back wall so I cant have true back channels
By bouncing beams off the ceiling and a door I have 5 distinct surround channels
this cannot decode multichannel pcm meaning it cannot play hd sound formats through hdmi in real surround sound
it receives the hd media as 2 channels and then optimises it for 5
use an optical cable for hd audio formats (players convert the hd to dts to go through optical)
Pros Great sound, good overall AV hub
Cons Surround not as full as True systems
Summary I am really impressed by Yamaha's one speaker offering. I was planning to get a $1500 reciever and get good speakers, but when I learned I could pay the same amount for the speaker itself and recieve the benefits of upconverting HDMI and other goodies, I could not resist. You will jerk your head to the left and right as I did when I had Star wars on. I was looking at the remote when the falcon jumps to lightspace. I looked left as a speaker was not even their, but my fireplace was. The surround works supprisingly well. A great product if you like simplicity!