Vizio VHT510 review: 5.1 sound from a sound bar
CNET reviews the Vizio VHT510 sound bar, finding that while we'd prefer more input options, the VHT510's addition of rear speakers to the traditional sound bar design results in outstanding sound quality at a very affordable price.
Sound bars are often thought of as replacements for full 5.1 home theater systems, but the Vizio VHT510 is a sound bar that is a 5.1 home theater system. Its unique design includes two rear speakers that connect directly to the wireless sub, which means you can stash the sub in the back of your home theater along with the rear speaker--no need to run cables from the front of the room to the back. More importantly, it has outstanding sound quality for a sound bar in this price range.
The VHT510 isn't perfect, as its connectivity options are limited and widespread user opinions indicate a high rate of failure for the front-panel indicator lights. (Vizio says the issue has been fixed and faulty units can be replaced.) And some "style-first" buyers may be turned off by the extra wires required for the rear channels, even if they do offer better sound quality. Still, the Vizio VHT510 is a downright bargain at its $320 street price and we think it's an excellent option for buyers who want the simplicity of a sound bar with a true surround-sound experience.