When enjoying movies and dramas on TV, not only is picture quality important, but sound quality is also important. There are a variety of items available to improve the sound quality of your TV, but if you are looking for something that can be easily used by beginners, we recommend a sound bar.
In this article, we’ll introduce you to some of our recommended models of soundbars. Each model has different features, such as support for “virtual surround sound” for three-dimensional sound reproduction and the ability to connect to your smartphone via Bluetooth, so try to find the one that best suits your needs.
What is a soundbar?
A sound bar is a slim, bar-shaped (bar) speaker with a built-in amplifier. Its main purpose is to augment the sound surface of flat-screen TVs, and it is also called a theater bar.
Some models support a “virtual surround sound” function, which allows you to enjoy three-dimensional sound simply by placing them in front of your TV. Also, as long as a model has wireless connectivity, such as through Bluetooth, it can be used as an audio device in place of a conventional boombox or mini-component.
The difference between a soundbar and a home theater system
Home theater systems require multiple speakers to be installed to achieve a three-dimensional sound. Soundbars, on the other hand, can basically sound on their own.
Some soundbars come with a subwoofer instead of a stand-alone speaker, but they take up less space than a home theater system with multiple speakers, so you don’t have to worry about the layout of the room. If you’re looking for an easy way to improve the acoustics of your home, a soundbar is the way to go.
How to choose a soundbar
Smart and easy to install “One-body type”
The one-body type consists of only one sound bar. They are inexpensive, so they are recommended for those who want to keep installation costs down…but if you don’t want to make a lot of noise like you would in an apartment or condo, try looking for a one-body model.
A “two-unit type” that comes with a subwoofer
The two-unit type includes a subwoofer as a set of speakers dedicated to bass. Compared to the one-body type, this type can reproduce a more realistic sound. It is recommended for those who want to enjoy movies, sports and games with great intensity.
Choose by Size
Soundbars are usually installed on top of a TV stand. Be careful not to make it too large or it could come out of the stand. The height of the soundbar is also important. If the stand is low on the TV, it may overlap the screen.
Also, if it is a two-unit model with a subwoofer, check the size of the subwoofer as well.
Selecting by connection method
The typical connection method for soundbars is an HDMI cable connection, and the major advantage is that it supports high quality digital audio output. Also, the ARC standard, which supports audio input and output, is convenient because the cables are simple to organize.
Soundbars that support Bluetooth connectivity are also useful when connecting to mobile devices like smartphones and tablets. If you want to connect to a full-fledged audio system, an optical digital jack is recommended. Check the connection method of the audio equipment you own before choosing the sound bar you want to buy.
Selecting by sound quality and surround system
Sound quality is also important when choosing a soundbar, and models that support high-resolution sound sources, which provide more sound information than CDs, provide superior sound quality for your TV. We also recommend it for watching live video and other sound-intensive content.
If you want to enjoy three-dimensional and realistic sound, check out whether it supports Virtual Surround Sound, which can virtually reproduce surround sound. You can immerse yourself in the world of a movie or drama without the need for more speakers, because you’ll feel as if you’re surrounded by sound.
Choose by features
As long as it is compatible with the network player function through a wireless LAN connection, you can play the music in your PC or smartphone with excellent sound quality. Not only can it be used as a sound bar for TV, but it can also be used as a high quality speaker for your PC or smartphone.
Check the sound bar’s HDMI port to see how far it supports pass-through to 4K standards such as 4K/60p, HDR, and HDCP2.2 support. Depending on the model of the soundbar, you may not be able to take advantage of the performance of the player or TV, so be careful.
Recommended manufacturers of soundbars
Sony is known as one of Japan’s leading manufacturers of electronic equipment and electronics. Sony has one of the leading technologies in the audio equipment field and sells high-quality products that utilize the technology and know-how it has cultivated over the years.
In soundbars, we have utilized proprietary technology developed for audio equipment. Typical examples include the DSEE HX function, which converts ordinary sound sources into high-resolution equivalents, and LDAC, an audio compression technology that minimizes sound quality degradation via Bluetooth.
Another point is that some models support DSD playback, which faithfully reproduces the fine nuances of classical music. If you want to enjoy high quality sound even through a wireless connection, this is a manufacturer you must check out.
Yamaha has a long history of developing audio equipment. Over the years, Yamaha has developed proprietary technologies such as the “Cinema DSP” three-dimensional sound reproduction program, created by measuring the sound fields of the world’s famous halls and theaters, and the “A-YSTII system” that produces powerful bass even in a compact size. We recommend this manufacturer to those who want to experience high quality 3-D sound.
Bose is a well-known audio manufacturer that has been installed in a variety of places, including public facilities and luxury automobiles. The company’s strength lies in its patented technology and sound quality tuning ability to reproduce high quality sound.
Most Bose soundbars are compact models, but they offer good sound depth and breadth. You can fully feel the presence of the sound when it is produced.
JBL, a well-established American brand, is one of the world’s leading manufacturers of professional speakers for theaters and cinemas. JBL also offers a lineup of high quality products for home audio.
As a manufacturer that has contributed to the entertainment field for many years, our know-how and technology are at the top of the industry. We recommend this manufacturer to those who are looking for a sound bar that is loud and powerful.
Best Soundbar for TV 2020
Yamaha Sound Bar YAS-108
This one-body soundbar features a slim and stylish design with a height of 53mm. This model is recommended for installation in front of a low stand flat-screen TV or in a small space. The fabric cover gives it a high-end look and is suitable for those who want to blend in with their interiors.
Connection is as simple as connecting with a single HDMI cable. The control buttons are touch screen type, allowing you to turn the power on and off and adjust the volume with a light touch. It has a child lock, so you can use it in households with small children.
With the AAC codec and proprietary Music Enhancer technology, you can enjoy clear, high-quality sound even when you’re wirelessly connected to your phone or tablet.
Yamaha Sound Bar YAS-209
This is a two-unit soundbar with a wireless subwoofer. It has a high quality design and texture. The center unit and the subwoofer are designed with a combination of fabric materials. The center unit can also be wall-mounted, making it a recommended model to match any stylish room.
The speakers feature DTS Virtual:X, a virtual 3D surround technology that reproduces sound at height. You can experience a sense of presence as if you were surrounded by sound from all directions. The built-in microphone for voice control and support for the Amazon Alexa voice assistant feature are also convenient. Just by talking to it, you can perform basic operations such as playing songs and adjusting the volume, as well as listen to the weather forecast, news and traffic reports.
Bose Wireless Soundbar 500
A one-body sound bar with a slim and stylish appearance. We recommend this model for installation in front of a low-profile TV. The proprietary driver delivers powerful, realistic sound in a slim body.
Wirelessly play music files in your smartphone or tablet via Bluetooth connection. With the dedicated app, you can group sound links and listen to music in different rooms.
It’s also Wi-Fi-enabled, so you can access Amazon Music and other music services without wires, and it supports Amazon Alexa voice control.
Bose Solo 5 TV sound system
This is a one-body sound bar that plays high quality sound by connecting it to a TV. Connection is as simple as a single cable. With Bluetooth connectivity, this model is recommended for those who want to enjoy music easily with their smartphones and tablets.
The included universal remote control allows for basic operation of the TV, player and other devices used in combination. Press the “Dialogue Mode” button on the remote control to adjust and play back human voices in news and talk shows for easier listening.
JBL Bar 2.0
This one-body sound bar requires only one HDMI cable to connect, and is compatible with ARC-compatible HDMI cables as well as optical digital cables. Even those not used to handling devices can easily install this model with a single cable.
A simple, easy-to-use remote control with fewer buttons allows you to operate the unit from a remote location, and music files stored on your smartphone, tablet or PC can be played back via Bluetooth connection. The calm color scheme and luxurious design make it easy to blend in with your interior.
A best sound bar that can easily improve the sound quality of your flat-screen TV. Some products are now available that create a pseudo-surround environment simply by placing them on the front of the TV, and if they support Bluetooth or Wi-Fi connections, you can listen to music via your smartphone. If you are particular about the sound, try it out.