Sony's Muteki speakers have been around since 2009, and if you've ever seen them in person, you'd remember it -- the original Muteki was a 7.2-channel surround sound system; that's a lot of speakers. This year, the overpowered speaker line-up has diversified; there are new Micro, Mini and massive Muteki setups, all of which can knock your socks off.
Muteki means 'invincible' in Japanese, by the way -- and if you're looking for big sound, at the moment I don't think Sony has any serious competition.
Micro And Mini Muteki
The smallest Muteki speaker you can buy from Sony is the 'micro' GTK-N1BT -- it's not super small at 554mm wide, but it's cheap at $279 when you consider its 100 Watts of audio prowess, coming from a 60W subwoofer and two 20W front-facing full-range drivers. Like Sony's other new speakers, it has abandoned the iPhone dock for pure Bluetooth connectivity, using optional NFC to start the handshake.
The step-up $429 mini Muteki, the GTK-X1BT, bumps up the power levels to 500W RMS, going all-out with two 250W front-facing speakers. True to the Muteki brand it has a bunch of fancy lights on the front, all of which can be controlled with Sony's SongPal app for iOS and Android. It's fine being positioned horizontally or vertically, so while it's relatively bulky compared to something like the B&W Zeppelin Air it can fit into a corner out of the way.
Muteki Shake And Floor-Standing Speakers
These are the big guns. Sony's new SHAKE77 and SHAKE99 floorstanding speakers are for serious bass and house-filling sound. Even the lesser $1299 SHAKE77 claims 3600W RMS of peak power output through two massive stereo speakers, with extended lighting effects and the addition of a CD drive, AM tuner and second USB input. A more versatile equaliser option than the smaller Muteki speakers means you can adjust bass, mid-range and treble independently on the two Shake stereos.
When Sony showed off the $2299 SHAKE99's 4800W of power for us in its demonstration studio, the floating ceiling in the room literally shook dust loose, and a picture frame sitting on a bookshelf fell over. These are speakers that are equally at home on your back patio providing house party tunes as they are in your living room -- as long as you can find the spare space.
All these speakers are available in-store and through Sony's online shop now, but in July and September more floorstanding speakers will be introduced. Bridging the gap between the mini Muteki and the SHAKE77, the MHCV3 is a single tower that has a solid 720W of power, with angled stereo speakers to provide a wider soundstage. It looks like a space-age jukebox, complete with central pulsing LED light effects -- really cool if you want big sound in a small apartment. [Sony]