Having purchased my Samsung surround sound system (HT-TX35R), I was then faced with the connundrum of where to fit all the speakers in the living room. Most importantly, how I was going to trail the wires from the AV receiver around the room to the two rear speakers which were behind my sofa.
I came across the SWA-400 Wireless rear speaker unit on Amazon and paid around £80 for it.
The point of this unit is that you don't have to connect rear speakers to the main unit which is the AV receiver/DVD player. Having wires going the full length of the room is a bit of a safety hazard - there is always the risk that you will trip and damage either yourself, or worse the expensive speaker system. It is also a lot tidier and looks much better without the wires.
It is important to point out that this unit does not completely eliminate wires, you still need to plug both rear speakers into it. You still also have to plug in the centre, sub and 2 front speakers into the AV receiver but these all generally sit on or around the TV. The main benefit of this unit is the absence of wires stretched across the room to the rear speakers.
A small wireless transmitter card plugs into the back of your AV receiver (check compatibility) and sends the signal to this box which in turn feeds the sound to the rear speakers which are plugged into it. The card is about the size of a standard camera SD memory card and comes with the unit. On my AV receiver it is clearly marked where you need to put it, although it is not so clear which way round it goes, so some trial and error may be called for.
On the front of the unit is either a red light (unit is off / not receiving any signal) or blue light (unit is receiving signal). If the blue light flashes that means the unit has detected a signal and is trying to pick it up.
On the back of the unit there is an on/off witch, but being a lazy so-and-so, I just leave it in "stand by" mode when I am not using it. There is also the 2 slots to plug in the 2 rear speakers, these are clearly denoted with a "L" and "R" so you know which goes in each slot.
Finally there is the plug which goes into a standard wall socket (I like that is it not battery operated as it perhaps could have been).
The unit is faily small (dimensions in MM are (W*H*D) 76*256*175). Given it is a Samsung, it is very stylish and looks like a lovely bit of kit. Usually I would hide something like this away behind the sofa but such is the sleek design I am happy to leave this on. If you have a Samsung TV as well as surround sound system then this bit of kit really does accompany it very well. All Samsung equipment seems to be finished in that very sleek matt black colour.
In my opinion (and I do consider myself to be a bit of an audiophile), the sound quality is just as good as when the speakers are plugged into the AV receiver. There is no loss in either treble or bass and the sound is crisp and sharp just like you would expect from a Samsung.
The product description for this unit says that it uses a unique 5.8Ghz frequency that will not interfere with other wireless devices. You should take this with a pinch of salt. I have a Playstation 3 that I like to play on surround sound (boys and their toys!) and every now and then my wireless controller will not connect with the Playstation. Having done some online research it appears that this is due to the frequency being interrupted by the wireless unit. As I said, this does not happen all the time but you should be aware of it as a potential issue. With the PS3 unit and AV receiver having to be connected to the TV, these will always be in close proximity to the TV. The SWA 4000 will generally be behind the sofa inbetween the 2 rear speakers and you will 9 times out of 10 be sat on the sofa with your controller in hand...so there will always be a chance of interference.
Every now and then the unit loses signal from the AV receiver. This can be offputting especially if you are watching a movie and the sound from behind suddenly disappears. The AV unit will flash up a "rear check" warning message as it attempts to re-establish the connection. Sometimes with the PS3, when the connection is re-established, it is slightly out of sync at first.
Ensure that your surround sound system is wireless 5.1 surround sound compatible. It will say this in the manual, as you will need to have a slot in the back of the AV receiver to plug in the wireless transmitter card. You can also check this on the Samsung website:
Other reviews on this site and on the internet report that they can hear the fan inside the unit and it can be distracting. I have to say that after 2 years of use I have never heard this. So I guess it could be either luck of the draw, or other users have much more sensitive hearing than me. Put it this way, when I am watching an action movie with the sound up, you wouldn't hear a plane crash outside, let alone a little fan in the unit!
Whilst there are some issues that you may/may not encounter, I would still highly recommend this unit. It looks really smart and does exactly what it says on the tin. If you like your system to look smart and are worried about the safety of having wires trailing across the entire room then this is exactly what you need.
The Samsung SWA-4000 wireless receiver is a great piece of kit, I have mine connected to my SAMSUNG HTZ310R but I believe you can you use them for other Samsung surround systems although I do not know exactly which ones. Please be aware that this only allows the 2 rear speakers to become wireless, never the less this is still very handy indeed. It saves you running cables across your room and is much neater. To setup the system you plug the receiver card into the back of your system then plug the 2 rear speakers into the receiver, obviously you still get cables but I can hide these behind my sofa. Before I brought this I was worried about the sound quality from the speakers but it is just the same as if you had them plugged directly into your surround system. The only slight complaint is that the fan in the receiver can become quite noisy at times, it seems to kick in after a certain volume, however I don't really hear this unless I am listening for it so it's not that bad. Overall I am very happy with this device and have had the convenience of less cabling without the loss of sound quality, if you have a compatible surround system then this is a must.