Panasonic SC-PT670

To maximize enjoyment of this combo five-disc HD video upconverting DVD changer, iPod dock, and cost-conscious 5.1 surround-sound setup, create an equilateral triangle with your seat and the front left and right speakers (placed equidistant from the TV). The center speaker should sit above or beneath the TV, directly in line with your position. Surround speakers should then be placed behind and to your left and right, while the subwoofer can go anywhere besides the corners. All speakers should be set at ear level.

Sony PlayStation 3 (80GB)

Sure, you could always buy separate value-priced components cheaper piecemeal (at least up front), but bundled together, this one-stop multimedia hub -- capable of running HD Blu-ray movies; digitally downloading films, software, and television shows; surfing the web; streaming audio and video; and (oh yeah) playing awe-inspiring games -- still offers significant cost savings.

Universal Remote Control Digital R50

Forget the nominal SRP of $149: You’ll find vendors hawking this sweet universal remote for nearly half that online. It’s capable of controlling 18 individual components, and the built-in configuration wizards -- including a two-inch color LCD screen for user-friendly walk-throughs -- make installation a breeze. Program the device to perform multiple actions in sequence, set it on the coffee table, and you’ll never want to get up again.

Sling Media Slingbox PRO-HD

Having invested in a winning setup, why not spend a little more to enjoy its creature comforts even when you’re miles away from home? Add this nifty little device -- capable of pushing HD video from a DVR, cable box, satellite receiver, and DVD player via the Internet to a cell phone or remotely located PC -- to your system, and you’ll be doing just that. BlackBerry and iPhone users are the latest to tune in.