LG SN11RG Soundbar Page 2

The sense of a wraparound soundfield is present in the Atmos mix of Justice League (Blu-ray). Firstly, this reaps rewards when it comes to evoking ambience; the distant sounds of Gotham's streets pepper Batman's rooftop arrival in Chapter One, placing you right in the scene. And when more precise effects positioning is demanded, the SN11RG is up to task. The attack on the Russian farmhouse in Chapter 7 features parademons screeching above and around the building, and it's the sort of sound design that grabs your attention. At around 01.01.40, one of the beasties enters top right, traverses to the rear and disappears across the back. The difference between this 7.1.4 soundscape and the 5.1.2 offering of LG's 2019 SL8YG is dramatic. There's no longer the feeling that everything is playing out in front of you, and the balance between front and back is impressive.

In my room I enjoyed an effect of height, if not the overt coming-from-above impact of Atmos separates. Channel levels can be adjusted in pairs. After sampling some Dolby-produced demo clips, I chose to boost both rear and front overhead channels.

Conversely, LG's sub needs reining in. Opting for more Bat-flavoured fun with the superior DTS-HD MA 5.1 mix of The Dark Knight (4K BD), I was quickly reaching for the SN11RG's compact handset. When the Joker's henchman fired his zip wire across the roof, the corresponding bass hit was mightily loud, too aggressive in fact. With the default sub level ('WF') lowered considerably (start at -15 and work your way up), the mix began to dovetail together better, and I was able to get more of an appreciation of the soundbar's other traits, and an improved mid-range clarity to dialogue.


Dynamic attack and detail? This system delivers. As William Fichtner's bank manager began fighting back against the Joker's robbers, each blast of his shotgun was a mix of crisp leading edge and tight LF thud. Shattering glass cracked across the front soundstage, attacking but not brash. Hans Zimmer's urgent score sounded strong and purposeful. And the side-firing drivers on the 'bar make a good fist of surround-channel playback.

Even after tinkering, on occasion the sub did sound sluggish with very deep effects, but this didn't detract much from its overall appeal and ability to convey the weight and scale of film soundtracks. However, when streaming music over Chromecast, it was necessary to raise its level back up. J.J. Cale's bluesy Midnight in Memphis (Tidal) sounded thin otherwise.

There are more musical and dynamic stereo soundbars out there, but none offer LG's all-channels-go presentations that can be quite fun; immersive alternatives to the no-nonsense 2.1 of Standard mode.

Oh, What An Atmosphere
The SN11RG isn't without its foibles. Instigating some of its more advanced audio tools (including auto calibration) requires use of a separate LG app to the Google Home one you'll use to get streaming wirelessly; the soundbar itself is gigantic; and there's work to be done when it comes to EQ and sound mode selection. Experiment with its various modes and you might often wonder exactly what 'channel' you're hearing from its rear speakers. It's not cheap either.


But countering this is the sheer enjoyability of its 7.1.4 playback (you'll only buy the SN11RG if you want 7.1.4 audio, not least because LG sells more affordable 5.1.2 models). This system evokes the atmosphere of Atmos mixes better than any 5.1.2 'bar I've heard. Viewed as a smart-featured one-stop-shop sonic immersion machine, it's a success n

HCC Verdict


Price:  £1,500

We say: LG's well-featured 7.1.4 system delivers big, bold sonics that make movie night a treat. It's not quite plug-and-play, though, so familiarise yourself with presets and tweak the sub.

Overall: 4.5/5


DRIVERS: 2 x upfirers; 2 x side-firers; 3 x tweeters; 3 x midbass (soundbar); 2 x rear upfirers; 2 x rear front-firers ONBOARD POWER: 770W (total, inc. subwoofer) CONNECTIONS: 2 x HDMI inputs; 1 x HDMI eARC output; optical digital audio input; USB DOLBY Atmos/DTS:X: Yes/Yes SEPARATE SUB: Yes. 7in woofer REMOTE CONTROL: Yes DIMENSIONS: 1,443 x 63(h) x 146(d)mm WEIGHT: 7.2kg

FEATURES: Bluetooth (5.0); Wi-Fi; 4K HDR passthrough (inc. Dolby Vision); AI Sound Pro and AI Room Calibration; Movie, Music, Bass Blast and Standard presets; virtual 7.1.4 soundfield; Meridian Audio technology; Google Assistant (with in-built mic)/Chromecast; user EQ; 24-bit/192kHz hi-res file playback/upsampling