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The Best Soundbars

Last updated on October 13, 2020

We looked at the top 16 Soundbars and dug through the reviews from 64 of the most popular review sites including RTINGS.com, Best Tech Reviews, BestReviews, The New York Times, PC Magazine, Trusted Reviews and more. The result is a ranking of the best Soundbars.

Best Soundbars

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Our Picks For The Top Soundbars

Show Contents
Our Take
Experts Included
Pros
Cons
  The Best Overall

Bose Solo 5 TV Soundbar & Universal Remote Control

Bose

Solo 5 TV Soundbar & Universal Remote Control

Overall Take

Bluetooth ConnectivityThis soundbar offers Bluetooth connectivity, so that you can wirelessly stream music from your favorite devices.

Experts Included
DWYM Electronics Experts plus BestReviews, CNET and 1 more. Along with user reviews from Amazon.
Pros
" In addition to the Solo 5 soundbar that's praised for its balanced sound quality, Bluetooth connectivity, and reasonable price, this kit includes the wall mount unit that makes installation a snap. Sound bar has dialogue mode for clearer voice sounds."
Cons
"The Solo falls short of the sound quality of both other pedestal sound bars and traditional sound bars that include a wireless subwoofer. It lacks a front-panel display, so you won't know if its volume level is maxed out or..."

SAMSUNG HW-T450 Dolby Audio Soundbar

SAMSUNG

HW-T450 Dolby Audio Soundbar

Overall Take

Small in SizeSince this soundbar stands just 2.1 inches tall, it won't take up much space.

Experts Included
DWYM Electronics Experts plus . Along with user reviews from Amazon.

Majority Bowfell Bluetooth Sound Bar

Majority

Bowfell Bluetooth Sound Bar

Overall Take

Remote Control IncludedHigh-quality cinematic sound is what you'll get with this soundbar, as it features a built-in subwoofer and a 30-watt output.

Experts Included
DWYM Electronics Experts plus . Along with user reviews from Amazon.
  The Best Value

VIZIO SB2920-C6 29-Inch 2.0 Channel Soundbar

VIZIO

29-Inch 2.0 Channel Soundbar

Overall Take

Easy SetupAll you need to do to set this soundbar up is to connect it to your TV using one of the provided cables.

Experts Included
DWYM Electronics Experts plus BestReviews, Tom’s Guide, The Great Device and 3 more. Along with user reviews from Amazon and Vizio.
Pros
" f you’ve got limited space, check out the VIZIO SB2920. At just 29 inches long, it’s made for smaller spaces, but with 95 decibels of power on board, it can still bring the noise when you need it. Our favorite..."
Cons
"Lacks HDMI, so you can’t connect your video sources directly to it."
Don't just take for granted what one reviewer says. Along with our own experts, DWYM analyzes the top expert reviews of the leading products and generates a score you can actually trust.
23

Products Considered

We identified the majority of the soundbars available to purchase.
16

Products Analyzed

We then selected the leading and most popular products for our team to review.

View All Product Rankings

64

Expert Reviews Included

In addition to our expert reviews, we also incorporate feedback and analysis of some of the most respected sources including: RTINGS.com, Best Tech Reviews, BestReviews, The New York Times, PC Magazine.

50,513

User Opinions Analyzed

We also incorporate user reviews from the leading retailers including Amazon, Crutchfield, Best Buy, JBL, Vizio, Walmart and 7 others.

Our experts reviewed the top 16 Soundbars and also dug through the reviews from 64 of the most popular review sites including RTINGS.com, Best Tech Reviews, BestReviews, The New York Times, PC Magazine, Trusted Reviews and more. The result is a ranking of the best of the best Soundbars.

DWYM is your trusted roduct review source. Our team reviews thousands of product reviews from the trusted top experts and combines them into one easy-to-understand score. Learn more.

Look for the DWYM seal for products that are the best in their category.

The Best Overall

Bose Solo 5 TV Soundbar & Universal Remote Control

Our Expert Score
7.7
3 expert reviews
User Summarized Score
0.0
0 user reviews
Our Take

Thanks to this soundbar's slim design, it can be set up just about anywhere. Users will find the unit is a cinch to set up with your TV's HDMI port or with an optical cable. If you have trouble understanding the conversations coming from your television, you'll appreciate that this soundbar comes with a dialogue mode to make each word easy to understand.

What other experts liked
In addition to the Solo 5 soundbar that's praised for its balanced sound quality, Bluetooth connectivity, and reasonable price, this kit includes the wall mount unit that makes installation a snap. Sound bar has dialogue mode for clearer voice sounds.
- BestReviews
The Bose Solo is among the best-looking sound bars available, with a clutter-free pedestal design. The included remote is excellent and dead simple to use. Its sound quality is unambiguously better than a TV's built-in speakers, especially for movies and...
- CNET
November 28, 2012 | Full review
The remote that comes with this soundbar is truly multifunctional, so you can use it for controlling your TV, DVD player or a sound console
- Best Advisor
What other experts didn't like
You may have to adjust volume, bass, and dialog when stitching to TV mode, which can be annoying. The volume could be louder, and the bass deeper.
- BestReviews
The Solo falls short of the sound quality of both other pedestal sound bars and traditional sound bars that include a wireless subwoofer. It lacks a front-panel display, so you won't know if its volume level is maxed out or...
- CNET
November 28, 2012 | Full review
No control buttons on the front panel
- Best Advisor

The Best Bang For Your Buck

VIZIO SB2920-C6 29-Inch 2.0 Channel Soundbar

Our Expert Score
9.0
6 expert reviews
User Summarized Score
8.6
4,605 user reviews
Our Take

You'll enjoy premium audio with this easy-to-install soundbar. If you prefer, you can use the built-in Bluetooth function to stream your favorite tunes from your mobile device. Audio power is boosted with this soundbar, thanks to the inclusion of two full-range stereo speakers.

What other experts liked
f you’ve got limited space, check out the VIZIO SB2920. At just 29 inches long, it’s made for smaller spaces, but with 95 decibels of power on board, it can still bring the noise when you need it. Our favorite part: it’s got Bluetooth built in, so streaming music to...
- BestReviews
Clear, resonant vocals that make it easy to understand dialog happening on the screen. It's also built solidly.
- Tom's Guide
High volume level for very loud music without any distortion
- The Great Device
Easy to set up, use, and troubleshoot.
- The Product Analyst
The bass, especially, does well to retain a lot of character and definition even when turned up pretty high, and it never falls into the usual pitfall of becoming muddy.
- Audio Rumble
Provides a powerful boost to the speakers in your thin flat screen TV, and you can hook up multiple devices at the same time.
- GoSoundShack
What other experts didn't like
This option doesn't come with a subwoofer.
- BestReviews
Lacks HDMI, so you can’t connect your video sources directly to it.
- Tom's Guide
Does not have a sub-woofer.
- The Great Device
A bit bulkier than other soundbars.
- The Product Analyst
Some users prefer a more granular volume control.
- Audio Rumble
Not HDMI compatible.
- GoSoundShack

Overall Product Rankings

Bose Solo 5 TV Soundbar & Universal Remote Control

1. Bose Solo 5 TV Soundbar & Universal Remote Control

Overall Score: 9.1
Reviews Included: 4

SAMSUNG HW-T450 Dolby Audio Soundbar

2. SAMSUNG HW-T450 Dolby Audio Soundbar

Overall Score: 8.9
Reviews Included: 1

Majority Bowfell Bluetooth Sound Bar

3. Majority Bowfell Bluetooth Sound Bar

Overall Score: 8.8
Reviews Included: 1

VIZIO SB2920-C6 29-Inch 2.0 Channel Soundbar

4. VIZIO SB2920-C6 29-Inch 2.0 Channel Soundbar

Overall Score: 8.7
Reviews Included: 10

JBL Bar 5.1 Channel 4K Ultra HD Soundbar

5. JBL Bar 5.1 Channel 4K Ultra HD Soundbar

Overall Score: 8.3
Reviews Included: 12

Sonos Playbase Soundbar

6. Sonos Playbase Soundbar

Overall Score: 8.1
Reviews Included: 7

VIZIO 2.1 SB2821-D6  Soundbar & Wireless Subwoofer

7. VIZIO 2.1 SB2821-D6 Soundbar & Wireless Subwoofer

Overall Score: 8.1
Reviews Included: 5

Sony HT-Z9F Soundbar & Wireless Subwoofer

8. Sony HT-Z9F Soundbar & Wireless Subwoofer

Overall Score: 8.1
Reviews Included: 5

Samsung Soundbar with Dolby Atmos

9. Samsung Soundbar with Dolby Atmos

Overall Score: 8.0
Reviews Included: 7

Sonos Playbar Mountable Soundbar

10. Sonos Playbar Mountable Soundbar

Overall Score: 8.0
Reviews Included: 9

LG Electronics SJ9 5.1.2 Channel Soundbar

11. LG Electronics SJ9 5.1.2 Channel Soundbar

Overall Score: 7.9
Reviews Included: 6

Sony HT-CT290 Ultra-Slim 300W Soundbar

12. Sony HT-CT290 Ultra-Slim 300W Soundbar

Overall Score: 7.7
Reviews Included: 5

Yamaha ATS1080-R Built-In Subwoofers & Bluetooth Soundbar

14. Yamaha ATS1080-R Built-In Subwoofers & Bluetooth Soundbar

Overall Score: 7.1
Reviews Included: 6

Polk Audio Command Built-In Multi-Room Music Soundbar

16. Polk Audio Command Built-In Multi-Room Music Soundbar

Overall Score: 6.9
Reviews Included: 11

Our Soundbar Findings

Bose Solo 5 TV Soundbar & Universal Remote Control

What We Liked: Thanks to this soundbar’s slim design, it can be set up just about anywhere. Users will find the unit is a cinch to set up with your TV’s HDMI port or with an optical cable. If you have trouble understanding the conversations coming from your television, you’ll appreciate that this soundbar comes with a dialogue mode to make each word easy to understand.

SAMSUNG HW-T450 Dolby Audio Soundbar

What We Liked: This soundbar is equipped with SmartSound. That means the unit will automatically adjust the sound settings, so you get a pleasurable experience every time. It even comes with a handy remote control, so you can operate it from across the room.

Majority Bowfell Bluetooth Sound Bar

What We Liked: This soundbar can be connected to both your television and your phone. It has a sleek black design and a thin build that allow you to place it in a variety of locations. Users will appreciate the included USB port, which allows for playing more songs via a USB stick.

VIZIO SB2920-C6 29-Inch 2.0 Channel Soundbar

What We Liked: You’ll enjoy premium audio with this easy-to-install soundbar. If you prefer, you can use the built-in Bluetooth function to stream your favorite tunes from your mobile device. Audio power is boosted with this soundbar, thanks to the inclusion of two full-range stereo speakers.

JBL Bar 5.1 Channel 4K Ultra HD Soundbar

What We Liked: If you’re looking for a home theater system without the hefty price tag, go with this soundbar. It uses two detachable battery–powered wireless surround speakers. When charged, these speakers offer a full 10 hours of playing time.

Yamaha ATS1080-R Built-In Subwoofers & Bluetooth Soundbar

What We Liked: Everything you need to set this soundbar up, including a wall mount, is provided with your purchase. You can use an HDMI, optical or analog connection to sync the soundbar with your television and the Bluetooth connection to sync the soundbar to your cell phone. This unit also includes built-in subwoofers for a deeper bass.

Our Soundbar Buying Guide

Now that you can order a film at the press of a button, movie night has moved from the cineplex to living rooms. For that reason, it’s likely no surprise that consumers report they’d rather watch a movie at home than leave the house. But getting the same experience at home as you do in a theater can be challenging.

Even if you take advantage of the low prices on high-quality big-screen TVs, duplicating true movie theater surround sound can get expensive. In recent years, soundbars have advanced to the point where they now can simulate surround sound for a fraction of the cost of a speaker set. But one soundbar can differ dramatically from another, so it’s important to do your research before you buy.

Soundbars can range in price, but you’re sure to find one that fits within your budget. When shopping for soundbars, pay close attention to the range of tones you’ll get. Some soundbars can’t handle bass as well as others, even when they’re promising the best sound quality.

Once you get your soundbar home, you’ll generally be on your own to make it work with your existing systems. One of the best things you can do is take note of the equipment you already have and make sure the soundbar you choose is compatible. Many of today’s speakers use Bluetooth connectivity to allow you to eliminate unsightly wires. So if you have an older TV or receiver, you may find the soundbar you’ve bought won’t connect.

Finally, stop to think about where you’ll set up your new soundbar, as well as any speakers you plan to add on to it. There are soundbars you can mount on the wall, while there are many others that can set on your furniture in front of your TV. Whichever option you choose, note the dimensions of your soundbar in advance to ensure you know how much room it will take up.

DWYM Fun Fact

As you set up your home theater, it’s important to consider the size of your room. Soundbars are more than adequate for smaller rooms. But if your home theater is in a large basement or an oversized bonus room, you’re likely going to find that you need additional speakers to truly immerse your audience with sound. This is also true if you’re a movie buff who expects to feel like you’re on the Millennium Falcon, not just watching it on a screen. But many soundbars are designed for add-ons, so you should be able to build your home theater gradually if you aren’t quite ready to jump in fully just yet.

The Soundbar Tips and Advice

  • If your soundbar doesn’t sound good, there’s no point in even having one. If you’re going for the best sound, consider the Bose Solo 5 TV Soundbar & Universal Remote Control. It has great sound and great ranges. The Bose Solo also performs better in the deeper ranges, with bass you can feel in your chest.
  • For those interested in building a true home theater, adding on extra speakers is the key to success. Some models allow you to easily buy extra speakers to connect to your soundbar.
  • Setup can be intimidating if you don’t consider yourself a tech guru. The VIZIO 29-Inch 2.0 Channel Soundbar is among the easiest to use, whether you’re wiring it up or using its Bluetooth-pairing capabilities. Some models can be tricky to set up, especially when it comes to pairing with other equipment.
  • One of the biggest concerns when shopping for any speaker is where it will be. Some models are designed to hang on a wall, but they can also rest in front of your TV. Others can be mounted, but they looks great in front of your TV. If you’re limited on space, you may want to avoid any soundbar that comes with a separate subwoofer that you’ll need to place.
  • If you’re looking for the smallest soundbar, the SAMSUNG HW-T450 Dolby Audio Soundbar is the shortest, at only 2.1 inches tall.
  • One size benefit to smaller models is that they can be easily mounted horizontally or vertically, with the sensor automatically adjusting the sound depending on how you’ve oriented it.
  • If you have an Amazon product that uses Alexa, look for a unit that you can connect to your device, so that you can play music on command.
  • With some soundbars, you’ll have access to an app that you can then use to control your speakers. However, they may not come with a remote control, which means you’ll need a universal remote if you can’t connect it to an existing smart remote. Some soundbars come with a remote, but they’re still a bit bulky. You’ll also need to have two AAA batteries on hand for the models that use batteries.
  • Look for a soundbar that is built to last with durable ABS plastic beneath the soft cloth cover. Be aware that some models can scratch easily.
  • When it comes to price, you’re going to pay much more for some soundbars than other speakers. Be sure to consider whether you’ll also need to pay for separate speakers. In some instances, the price may also include a subwoofer, so keep that in mind.

About The Author

Avatar
Stephanie Faris 

Stephanie Faris is a former information technology professional who spent most of her career working with computers and printers. Now a novelist and professional writer, her writings on electronics have been published on top tech sites. When she isn't writing about technology, she's often checking out the latest news on the upcoming iPhone release.