Soundbars/Soundbases

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Steve May  |  May 17, 2017  |  0 comments

Is the time right to downsize that soundbar? Well, with set-top boxes, games consoles, Blu-ray players and jumbo bags of Maltesers all vying for space beneath your flatscreen, real estate is increasingly precious, so if you can shrink without impacting sound quality, going nano clearly makes a lot of sense.

Mark Craven  |  Oct 02, 2014  |  0 comments

Philips has always been a company known for its innovative ethos. And that still remains, despite the CE aspects of the brand now being split between two separate entities (TP Vision for TVs, Woox Innovations for audio, recently acquired by Gibson). The former still advocates Ambilight technologies and potent processing, while the latter has been attacking the domestic audio market with some neat ideas, under the Fidelio umbrella. 

Danny Phillips  |  Aug 21, 2013  |  0 comments

Soundbars are currently home cinema’s hero products and the HTL5120 is a fine example of the genre. The design is more luxurious than the price tag suggests, with silky black cloth, brushed silver panels and curvy gloss-black ports at both ends. It can be installed on the wall or tabletop, with an orientation sensor switching the sound to suit its position.

Danny Phillips  |  Apr 25, 2014  |  0 comments

Most soundbars are focused on sound quality, but Pioneer's SBX-N500 is a little more ambitious. Yes, it packs 140W of muscle for beefing up movies, but it’s also blessed with the sort of multimedia and networking talents that put some full-sized systems to shame, let alone soundbars.

Mark Craven  |  Nov 16, 2018  |  0 comments
Polk Audio is the latest brand to add wireless rear speakers to a soundbar/subwoofer system, therefore offering a 5.1 solution to those not interested in the more traditional approach based around a separate amplifier, 5.1 speaker package and oodles of speaker cable.

The system in question is the Magnifi MAX SR, available for around £600. It's the expanded version of Polk's 3.1-channel Magnifi MAX, itself a more serious proposition than the compact Magnifi Mini.

Danny Phillips  |  Jun 06, 2017  |  0 comments

Q Acoustics’ motorway-themed soundbar range continues with the M3, a slimmer and more affordable follow-up to the M4 (reviewed here and winner of our Soundbar of the Year award) and is actually still on sale three years later.

Adrian Justins  |  Aug 03, 2014  |  0 comments
Aesthetic flair was clearly not near the top of the priority list when Q Acoustics set about imagining its new Media 4 soundbar. Put bluntly, it is as attractive as Boris Johnson in a leotard, and at over 10cm high (including the feet) and 14cm deep, there’s no chance of simply sticking it in front of a contemporary screen slouching low on its stand. 
Danny Phillips  |  Mar 19, 2012  |  0 comments

While the major CE brands are busy cramming everything but the kitchen sink into their soundbar offerings, the audio specialists continue to stick to the product’s raison d’etre – replacing the raspy, weedy sonics of your flatplanel’s in-built speakers with some high-quality stereo goodness.

Adrian Justins  |  Dec 22, 2012  |  0 comments

You’ve got to admire Roth Audio for taking a risk with the name of its soundbar. It assumes, I guess, that customers will infer that no sub is required, not that the performance is worse than zero. Probably nobody cares, so long as it sounds cool. And taking care of low-end are dual built-in ‘Ultra Bass’ drivers, which complement six other drive units– including two side-firing drivers for an enhanced stereo effect. Power comes courtesy of a 64W amp, with Roth Audio’s proprietary Fractal Expansion processing promising the holy grail of surround sound.

Danny Phillips  |  May 11, 2015  |  0 comments

Roth is a soundbase debutante, and takes to the stage with the impressively-specced Neo 6.2 SoundCore. The name’s a bit of a mouthful but those numbers relate to the number of speaker drivers on board – six full-rangers and two downward-firing subs.

Steve May  |  Aug 25, 2012  |  0 comments

It was probably inevitable that the increasingly popular single-piece soundbar and the booming 2.1 audio market would collide. The result is a hybrid audio solution built around soundbars that can transform, Autobot-style, into traditional left/right loudspeakers.

Adrian Justins  |  Mar 06, 2013  |  0 comments

Samsung's HW-E450 is a classic soundbar design with its electronics, full-range drivers and tweeters built in to the main 'bar, complemented by a wireless subwoofer. The soundbar itself is long and thin, meaning it can happily sit in front of a tabletop-mounted screen without affecting the viewing area, or fixed to a wall.

Danny Phillips  |  May 07, 2015  |  0 comments

At 35mm high, Samsung’s first ever soundbase (or ‘SoundStand’ as the Korean corp calls it) is one of the slimmest on the market, allowing it to slip virtually unnoticed under your flatscreen. It also steers clear from the typical design blueprint, opting for a more streamlined look with sleek angles and curves. The brushed top panel flows seamlessly into the angled fascia, which is adorned with a large, legible LED display.

Danny Phillips  |  Aug 22, 2015  |  0 comments

Whether gimmick or game-changer, curved TVs are here to stay – but sadly so is the typically inadequate sound quality. Soundbars provide the solution, but a straight one looks odd in front of a curved TV. That’s why Samsung has conjured up a range of curved 'bars to complement its bendy screens. 

Richard Stevenson  |  Jul 22, 2016  |  0 comments

Soundbars are big sellers on the high street but they can get a cold shoulder from the home cinema aficionado seeking authentic surround sound. With its premium-priced HW-K950, Samsung has decided to address that very issue and do it in style. Although to call this simply a 'soundbar' doesn't do it justice.

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