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How to Choose a Soundbar

Posted on July 19, 2018 by RoboFlower

Soundbar is a compact, horizontally oriented electro-acoustic device, with or without a subwoofer, whose purpose is to improve and enhance the sound capabilities of the TV.

Soundbars are of different types, types and purposes, with different technical characteristics and sound. They can support different media formats, have different sets of functions and different interfaces, etc.

SOUNDBAR TYPE

soundbar-type

Soundbars, like many other technical devices, are usually divided into types.

The types of soundbars are divided according to how they connect to the TV.

In total, there are two such methods – directly and through the AV receiver.

Soundbars connected to the TV are directly called soundbars of the active type.

Soundbars connected to the TV through the AV-receiver are called passive-type soundbars.

If you are looking for the simplest solution – pay attention to active soundbars.

If you want to purchase a sound panel capable of providing the best sound quality – choose among passive type devices.

Although the original soundbars were designed as an acoustic component of the TV, over time their capabilities have become much broader.

Most soundbars, in addition to playing television sound, are also able to play optical discs, receive radio channels, play media files stored on flash media, etc.

Many of them are easily integrated into the network via Wi-Fi, creating connections with all DLNA devices and providing full support for Smart TV.

Some are able to connect over the Internet with videohosting such as YouTube and play video content from there.

Individual models are adapted for integration with mobile gadgets – for example, with devices from Apple (iPad, iPhone) or with mobile devices from other brands.

The expansion of the possibilities of soundbars led to the fact that they began to find a wider application.

Accordingly (based on the possibilities available to them), soundbars were divided into species.

There are three such species:

  • Soundbar – simple replacement of the regular acoustics of the TV;
  • soundbar – a compact acoustic component of a “home theater” with a powerful multi-channel surround sound;
  • soundbar – a full-fledged multi-functional audio system.

SOUND QUALITY

As for sound quality, there is an opinion that it should be evaluated not by technical characteristics, but by hearing.

In our opinion, this is quite a fair opinion – many buyers, when they come to the store, that’s what they do and, in the end, they are quite happy with the result.

For those who want to approach the issue of evaluating the soundbar sound quality more consciously (relying not only on their ears, but also on objective data) – we advise you to take into account all that has already been said about the sound quality above (on the effect on the sound quality of the configuration acoustic system, presence / absence of a subwoofer, sound decoder, sound processor, equalizer, etc.), as well as pay attention to the values ​​of power and range of frequencies reproduced in the soundbar’s specifications, to estimate the degree of distortion of sound on different frequencies on the graph of amplitude-frequency characteristics (AFC).

Power

When it is said about the power of a soundbar, as a rule, one must understand that it is a question of the total output power of the acoustic system of the soundbar. This power is most often indicated in the specifications. It is denoted by the abbreviation RMS and is expressed in Watts (Watts), one number meaning the sum of the nominal powers (CRO) of all channels of the acoustic system of the soundbar.

Note. In total there are four power indicators. In addition to the total output power (RMS), which is indicated by a single number (for example, 300 watts) and a nominal power (CPO), which is indicated separately for each channel (for example, for a 2.0 system – 2×50 – two channels of 50 watts), in the specifications of the soundbar are sometimes the same:

The maximum output power (passport) (MRO) is the power at which the sound has a minimum quality.
Peak maximum power (RMPO) – the maximum volume at which speakers placed in the speakers can burn.
Theoretically, the higher the power of the soundbar, the louder and better it sounds – fuller, deeper, clearer, purer, more saturated. This especially applies to bass and voice.

However, experience shows that, from the practical point of view, the purchase of a soundbar of very high power is not always justified. It is best to choose the power of the soundbar so that in the room where it wakes up, you do not have a desire to set the volume level above 60-70%.

Following this recommendation, you will save yourself from the problems of sound typical for low-power audio systems (when at high load they begin to “wheeze” and distort the sound) and do not overpay for the power you do not need.

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