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Best Soundbars for Any Budget

For movie lovers, gamers, and binge watchers, these audio devices will improve your TV’s sound quality, without blowing your budget.

best soundbars for movie tv fans

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A quality soundbar makes everything from dialogue to music and special effects sound much sharper, which basically makes your listening experience more enjoyable. And if you’ve been spending more time at home streaming movies and TV shows, gaming, or playing your favorite songs, it’s time to invest in a soundbar. To help you get started, we put together a list of some of the great soundbars ranging from less than $100 to over $2,000. For more shopping recommendations, check out the best stereo speakers, and additional tips to upgrade your home theater. Below, find our roundup of the best soundbars for any budget.

Vizio V-Series 2.1  Home Theater Soundbar with Wireless Subwoofer

A powerful speaker and subwoofer makes for a great combination, and the Vizio V-Series 2.1 surround sound system will amp up the sound quality at an affordable price. The 36″ device features DTS Virtual X and TruVolume to help you achieve the booming sound you’ve been looking for, and it’s remote-controlled with Bluetooth. It comes with a 5″ subwoofer and works with Google Assistant, Siri, and Alexa.

 

TCL Alto 8i 2.1 Channel Soundbar

The TCL Alto 8i is another good option among the newer models in the TCL Alto lineup. Measuring 39.4″, this sleek soundbar has a built-in subwoofer, Dolby Atmos Surround Sound, HDMI, Bluetooth, Aux 3.5 mm, Roku, and specialized sound modes for movies, music, and TV. It’s compact (less than 22” wide) enough to fit in any room (you can mount it to save even more space) and the wireless technology means that you can stream from your TV, smartphone, tablet, or laptop.

Bestisan 80 Watt Soundbar

On an even tighter budget? You can still get a good soundbar for less than $100. While it may not be up to the level as more expensive models, this 34″ remote-controlled Bestisan soundbar includes four built-in drivers and three sound modes: movie, music, and dialog. It has Bluetooth 4.2, and the base of the bar is angled at 15 degrees to provide full-bodied sound. Besides your TV, the soundbar can be paired with most smart devices. You can use it wirelessly, but you can also connect it with an Optical port, RCA connect, or AUX input. And the installation is super easy.

JBL Bar 2.1 Deep Bass Soundbar

The JBL Bar 2.1 Deep Bass Soundbar (measuring 38” x 2.28” x 3.35”) features 300 Watts of total system power to deliver an immersive, room-flooding sound experience with help from four powerful full range drivers, two 1” tweeters, and a 6.5” subwoofer. Additional features include: Bluetooth, Optical, HDMI and ARC connectivity with both Dolby Digital and JBL Surround Sound modes.

Yamaha YSP-5600 MusicCast SoundBar

The Yamaha YSP-5600 MusicCast Soundbar is the first of its kind to offer 7.1.2-channel multidimensional sound. This heavy duty gadget employs 46 speaker drivers, and Yamaha’s exclusive Digital Sound Projector technology to deliver Dolby Atmos and DTS:X multi-dimensional listening experiences. It has voice control, HDMI, Wi-Fi and Bluetooth for wireless, multi-room audio playback using your existing Wi-Fi network and other speakers that you might have in different rooms. Looking for something cheaper? Try Yamaha YAS-209 soundbar.

Polk Audio S35 Signature Home Theater Speaker

Polk Audio S35 was built to bring that big surround sound theater and music experience to your living room. The ultra-slim 4” center speaker delivers high-resolution audio performance with a minimum support of 40kHz. The S35 features dual power port bass-enhancing technology with six 3” drivers, newly designed 1” Terylene dome tweeters, precision cross-overs, and a detachable anti-diffraction grille.

Sonos Beam

Sonos has a strong reputation when it comes to product quality, so it makes sense that the Sonos Beam was tuned by Oscar-winning sound engineers. The smart device is available in black or white, and comes equipped with Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant, which allows you to use voice commands to stream movies and TV shows, check the news, or play music. You can also control it with a remote or the Sonos App. The Sonos Beam is also compatible with Apple AirPlay 2. And don’t be fooled by the size, this soundbar packs in high-definition sound. It features four full-range woofers, five class-D digital amplifiers, multi-channel echo cancellation, and adjustable bass and treble controls to further customize your listening experience. Sonos Beam is designed for TVs 49″ or smaller. If your TV is larger than that, try out the Sonos Arc for $799.

Sony HT-G700 Soundbar

The Sony HT-G700 Soundbar serves up powerful 3.1ch Dolby Atmos surround sound and crystal-clear dialogue through a dedicated center speaker, coupled with a powerful wireless subwoofer and advanced vertical surround engine technology. What more can you ask for? Luckily, there are a bunch of other essential features such as Bluetooth, HDMI, and multiple sound modes for enhanced audio that lets you hear everything in up to 7.1.2ch.

Polk Audio React Soundbar

Another option from Polk Audio: the React Soundbar. Thanks to Dolby technology, this affordable soundbar delivers detailed and expansive surround sound for your home theater, and you won’t need extra speakers. It also has Alexa already built in, making it compatible with other Alexa devices, such as the Fire TV Stick. The powerful internal amplifier and custom-tuned drivers offer up lifelike home cinema surround sound performance, and the wireless subwoofer delivers deep, impactful bass, creating a high-performance entertainment system.

Bose Smart Soundbar 700

The Bose Smart Soundbar 700 combines sophisticated design and exceptional sound. With its wraparound metal grill, clean lines, and a tempered glass top, the Bose Smart Soundbar 700 serves up a sound experience so entrancing you might get goosebumps. It features audio room calibration to optimize acoustic performance, as well as custom-designed proprietary drivers, QuietPort technology, which reduces noise while delivering mega sound, and a light bar that indicates when the soundbar is listening, searching, or speaking. The Smart Soundbar 700 has WiFi, Bluetooth, Alexa, Google Assistant, and Apple AirPlay 2 to wirelessly stream Spotify, Apple Music, Amazon Music, and more. The soundbar comes with a universal remote, and you can even pair it with Bose Noise Canceling Headphones 700 (through Bose SimpleSync). To upgrade your sound system even further, add the Bose Module 700 bundle with rear surround speakers (pictured).


Samsung HW-Q900T 7.1.2ch Soundbar

The Samsung HW-Q900T takes sound immersion to new levels. Specially designed by sound engineers, the Q900T analyzes your content to deliver optimized sound quality. And it has an array of great features: seven different channels (including a subwoofer channel and dual up-firing channels), 3D True surround sound, Dolby ATMOS/DTS:X technology, and Q-symphony, a new feature that allows you to play the soundbar and Samsung QLED-TV speakers simultaneously. Like most of the others listed, the Q900T has Alexa built in and a remote control, but you can also tap your smartphone on the top of the device and easily stream your favorite playlist.

Sennheiser Ambio Soundbar

In the mood to splurge? Sennheiser AMBEO Soundbar holds the power of a multi-speaker home cinema system in one device. Serving an unmatched 3D home audio experience, the AMBEO offers immersive 5.1.4 sound that delivers deep bass without needing an additional subwoofer. The AMBEO is compatible with Dolby Atmos DTS:X and MPEG-H. This pricey soundbar features a handful of 1” high-fidelity tweeters producing crystal clear studio-grade sound, along with half a dozen 4” long-throw woofers reproducing 30Hz bass levels. It also has built-in Chromecast, Bluetooth, and HDMI connections.

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