A solid soundbar is a must-have accessory for any home entertainment system. Modern TVs — even massive, top-tier models — are just too slim to house serious built-in speakers, and most sound straight-up awful compared to the most basic external speakers. Whether you’re a cinephile building a home theater, a competitive gamer who needs sharp audio cues, or just looking to enhance your next Nexflix binge, a soundbar will instantly boost your viewing experience.
Setting up a home audio system might sound tricky, but soundbars are an absolute breeze to connect and configure. There’s no need to hook up additional speakers, add subwoofers, or run through extensive testing (although you can add all the compatible accessories you want if you're building out a more complex speaker setup). You don’t even need a mess of cables because the top soundbars have Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity options. They also don’t take up a lot of additional space and have sleek, low-profile designs that will look fantastic in front of any TV.
You’ll hear an instant boost in audio quality with any of the following Dolby Atmos-enabled soundbars. Those built-in speakers will sound like garbage if you ever try to go back. The dialogue in your favorite dramas will be crisper, those action flick explosions will sound almost too close for comfort, and you’ll be able to pinpoint minute audio details you’d normally miss entirely. Whichever soundbar you choose, you’ll unlock a whole new world of audio and won’t want to leave the couch anytime soon.
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The Sonos Arc is the best all-around soundbar out there for under $1,000. Designed for TVs larger than 49", this stylish speaker produces incredible sound for both movies and music. With simple controls and lots of streaming service integrations, it’s a great choice to lead a complex smart speaker system.
LG’s SPD7Y soundbar is a fantastic budget-friendly audio solution for smaller rooms. This small package delivers immersive Dolby Atmos sound with surprisingly powerful bass. If you’ve got an LG TV, this soundbar can be controlled with your LG Magic Remote for mid-movie adjustments. LG also has a lot of affordable speakers if you want easy add-ons down the road.
The latest Sonos Beam model is absolutely incredible for the price. This smaller soundbar doesn’t have quite as many features as the Arc but still manages to rival top-tier competitors in base quality. With a low price tag, this is a great starter soundbar with plenty of room for upgrades and additions later on.
If you’re already a fan of Bose’s home speakers and headphones, the brand’s top soundbar will slide into your audio setup seamlessly. Bose uses what it calls PhaseGuide technology to push audio to specific corners of a room, giving you a surround sound experience without the hassle of managing multiple pieces of hardware.
Vizio’s Elevate has a one-of-a-kind feature that sets it apart from the pack: side speakers that will auto-rotate and bounce audio off your ceiling for a true cinematic experience. It’s not a design gimmick either — that distinction really helps Dolby Atmos sound feel more immersive. Sound quality aside, it’s also the coolest looking soundbar out there.
Sony’sHT-A7000 lives at the top-end of the soundbar quality range and delivers exceptional sound without the need for any additional speakers. This bar is also loaded with extra features: extra HDMI ports for gaming, integration with every music streaming service and digital assistant, and compatibility with practically any other device out there. If you want a do-it-all soundbar that you can connect to everything you own without a struggle, the HT-A7000 is the bar to buy.
If you’re looking for movie theater sound, Samsung’s HW-Q950A model will have you hooked right out of the box. This flagship soundbar comes with a wireless subwoofer and two wireless rears for an unprecedented 16 channels of sound in an 11.1.4 configuration. The price tag obviously reflects the features, but this soundbar is ahead of its time and will lead the pack for years to come.
The Sennheiser Ambeo speaker is truly the ultimate soundbar. It uses some of the most advanced audio processing technology available and delivers the most immersive audio that could possibly come from a single speaker. Absolutely everything will sound unbelievably better using this bar. Sure, you could build out an insane multiple-speaker sound system for this price, but this is the only option for this sort of sound quality from a single unit.