Soundbars: What to know before you buy
Soundbars: What to know before you buy
6:14

Soundbars: What to know before you buy

Speakers
Speaker 1: So you're looking for a soundbar and you're wondering which one to get. Great. Let's talk about it Speaker 1: First up. We'll talk a little bit about soundbars then it's onto the recommendations as chosen by C net's editors. If you just want the recommendations, please go to this time code right here. Okay. So before you decide to plunk down your money on a soundbar, there are a few things to know. If you're just looking for an upgrade from your TV speakers, it is extremely [00:00:30] likely a soundbar will sound better than your TV speakers. I say extremely likely, just in case there's one TV out there that I've never heard of. That has amazing speakers. In the old days of CRT TVs, you could get some decent speakers in that big housing, but this is now and TVs are super thin and TV speakers are not the best. If you're looking to replicate a surround sound experience with a soundbar that is more difficult for cheaper bars, but not impossible. Speaker 1: [00:01:00] Some sound hours over $300, come with surround speakers while others may offer them as an optional accessory, they usually cost an extra $200. If not, no need to worry. Some simulated sound technologies can actually be quite convincing. Take a look at this Sony video showing how one of its soundbar technology works. Essentially the audio would be fired in different directions and then bounce off of surfaces to make it sound like the audio's coming from above next to and behind [00:01:30] you. Sony says this particular sound bar has built in microphones that it uses to measure where surfaces are to optimize sound. You may see a feature called H DM I arc when you're looking at soundbars. So let's explain the, that arc stands for audio return channel. It uses a single HDMI cable to send audio from a TV back to a receiver or soundbar your television and the soundbar would both have to have the arc feature for this to work. Speaker 1: Take a look at the ports of your TV. If it has arc, it will likely be labeled. [00:02:00] If your TV does not have arc, you'll have to is another cable to get the sound from your TV to the soundbar. That could be an optical cable or a 3.5 millimeter analog cable, which you can connect to the TV's headphone output, whatever way you attach the soundbar to your TV. You'll also need to get into your TV settings to turn off your TV speakers and push the audio out. Oh, and once small consideration about soundbars, while most are two inches tall, it's worth checking the dimensions of the actual device. [00:02:30] The last thing you want is the soundbar blocking your view of your TV because it's too tall, right? Okay. Onto the recommendations. If price is no object, take a look at the scent. Heiser Amio. This is the best Doby atmo sound Ambar available. Speaker 1: The Ambi provides the most realistic surround sound from a single sound bar. Take a quick look at this video from Doby with Doby Atmos, audio can be coming from above and below your ears. Let's talk about more specs. You get three [00:03:00] HTMI inputs E arc audio, and the Amio has Chromecast built in. So you can beam stuff from your phone to this sound bar. You also get a two foot tall microphone, so you can calibrate your sound. What do you do with the microphone after hang on to it for later in case stuff changes in your room. You may have to re the Ambi is not a small device here. You can see it on its side next to C net's Thai pen Berry. The Ambi is about 1.2 meters in width or over four [00:03:30] feet. And its height is over five inches. You will probably need to prop up your TV for an unobstructed view. Speaker 1: The downsides, it doesn't not come with a sub first. So you're not getting truly deep bass. Also music doesn't sound great. Oh, and then there's the price. I hope you're sitting down $2,500. The best all in one soundbar for under a grand is the Sonos arc. It's got some nice darling with the tubular look comes in black or white and a retails for around $900. [00:04:00] The arc does not come with a subwoofer, but it does deliver surprisingly deep base. Sonos gives you the option to wirelessly, add a subwoofer and rear speakers. If you want. The Sonos also has some smarts. It has support for both Amazon and Google's voice assistance. I won't say they're wait words, because that would be cruel while the ambo and arc are great. If you're looking to spend less check out the Visio V 21, it is the best soundbar for the money and the retails for around $190. Speaker 1: [00:04:30] The Visio V 21 also includes a wireless sub offerer so you can enjoy some base. One small gripe is that you cannot add rear speakers to the V 21. If you want a good at soundbar with rear speakers and Atmos, check out the Visio, M 5 1 2 a H six, great name. It comes with a sub offer and two wired rear speakers. The rear speakers plug into the Suber, the Visio M 5 1 2 a eight six cost round $500. Anyway, back to the Visio V 21, [00:05:00] it has HD. I arc optical audio and ack, and a Jack labeled ox. VA. The VA stands for voice activated. You connect your smart speaker to this port and the soundbar switches to the input automatically. When it hears a command, most people are probably better using a separate smart speaker as it doesn't mute the TV. When you ask it something and let Ashley let's talk about the Roku stream bar. Speaker 1: This is a two channel soundbar with side firing wide speakers. It's not just a soundbar. It's [00:05:30] also a streaming device that explains a name stream bar. Anyway, Roku says it's onboard streaming capabilities are about the same as the Roku streaming stick. Plus the stream bar is pretty compact at only 14 inches in width. So it should be able to find a space in your home easily. The Roku stream bar costs around $130. You can also upgrade the stream bar with a wireless subwoofer and surround speakers. If you'd like. Now, remember the tech changes all the time. So browse [00:06:00] around cnet.com for all the latest. There are links to everything we talked about in the description. So if you wanna get one of the sound bars we mentioned, there you go. Big, thanks to tie Penn Berry first help on this video. I've been IA act tar, and I'll see you online.

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