CNET First Look
Zvox SB500 soundbar is smart, simple to use and sounds greatThe Zvox SB500 soundbar is simple to set up and is one of the better performing speakers for the money.
[MUSIC] After a run of pretty okay products, the new SB500 is the companies best sounding speaker yet, and it seems ZVOX is now ready to take the fight to both Yamaha and Bose. At $599 dollars, the SB500 is a 43 inch wide sound bar, which features 3 mid range drivers and 2 base drivers. The speaker's quite tall at almost six inches high, and is best mounted on the wall. It even comes with keyhole brackets. The speaker is ported to the left hand side to deeper base, and on the right hand side you'll see the large and friendly controls. The speaker comes with a serviceable remote and features a large orange display on the right side of the unit. One disappointment we had was that the unit only allows two connections at a time, one digital and one analog. Also there is no HDMI. Happily will also get bluetooth for streaming music from the phone. Unlike some competitors, you're unable to add a subwoofer to the ZVox. However there is a bass control if you wanna tailor it to your taste. Sound quality is the ZVox's biggest draw and the speaker makes a surprising amount of bass for its compact size. This is an action movie madman. It has clear dialogue combined with deep, punchy bass. If you're a music lover though, you probably won't buy a sound bar anyway. The Z Box does a decent job of most files. Be aware that if you love deep base, the unit can switch to mono mode to avoid exploding into thousands of bits or something. As an all arounder, the Z Box SB500 does a better job than most You might even find that on the dedicated speaker system and receiver could do a better job for the money. [MUSIC]