Best sound bars of 2016


Nothing beats a full-blown home theater system, but for many people a sound bar is the best compromise between wanting better sound and not wanting an imposing home audio system. We've rounded up the best sound bars on the market, with an emphasis on low-hassle systems that sound better than they should considering their small footprint. None of these systems require a separate AV receiver and most include a wireless subwoofer or no separate subwoofer at all. If you're looking for something else, you can also check out our list of the best speakers overall.

Yamaha YAS-203

The Yamaha YAS-203 breaks free of most of the performance constraints of budget sound bars, sounding bigger, more spacious, more dynamic and clearer than anything near its price.

Price: $349.95 - $429.11 Check prices

4.5 stars Outstanding Spacious-sounding bar hits sweet spot

Pioneer SP-SB23W

The Pioneer SP-SB23W is the best affordable sound bar if you care about sound quality, with its outstanding sonics making up for some of its design limitations.

Price: $399.00 - $575.77 Check prices

4.5 stars Outstanding Affordable sound bar that's serious about sound

Zvox SB500

The SB500 sound bar is easily the best-looking and -sounding Zvox we've ever tested, and among the best for the money, period.

Price: $599.00 - $599.99 Check prices

4 stars Excellent

Definitive Technology W Studio

The excellent-sounding, elegant-looking Definitive Technology W Studio helps bring a touch of luxury to those willing to splash out on a high-end sound bar.

Price: $998.98 - $1,299.99 Check prices

4 stars Excellent

Polk Omni SB1

If you're looking for a higher-end sound bar with excellent movie sound, advanced streaming features and full control of dialogue intelligibility, then the Polk Omni SB1 fits the bill well.

Price: $319.70 - $546.55 Check prices

3.5 stars Very good

Vizio SB4051-C0

The Vizio SB4051 packs a wealth of features into a compact sound bar/wireless sub system, and its satellite speakers produce true, room-filling surround sound.

Price: $298.05 - $448.00 Check prices

3.5 stars Very good
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