There is no doubting that adding a surround sound home cinema system makes watching movies at home, and gaming, a much more enjoyable experience. The problem is that having to position 5 speakers and a subwoofer in your lounge can be difficult and is often a compromise between good performance and acceptable looks. Even a 2.1 system with just the 2 speakers and a subwoofer can be tricky in some rooms.
This is where soundbars come in as they offer a simple way to get plug and play surround sound without any of the positioning or installation problems. If you have a television, then you almost certainly have room for a soundbar.
Soundbars work by having smaller speaker drivers in a single box, and most commonly have two speakers to replicate a basic 2.1 effect. Some of the more expensive models have many more, all pointing in subltly different ways, with the aim of creating a virtual surround sound effect. This is also combined with complicated electronic signal processing to enhance the limited ability of a set of small speakers.
Although a virtual surround sound system can’t produce quite the same quality of sound and surround effects as physically positioned speakers, there is no doubt they provide an extremely easy and convenient way to improve your home entertainment enjoyment.
What to consider before you buy a Soundbar
Although they are very tempting, and often very good indeed, they are never going to quite reproduce a genuine surround sound effect and it is going to be much more reliable with separate speakers.
Why you should buy a Soundbar
Because of their ultimate convenience, and relative low cost it is not hard to see why they are so popular – they are pretty much plug and play. Many models even come with wireless subwoofers so you don’t need to connect wires from the soundbar to the sub. Also, if you aren’t happy with the sound from the thin speakers on your television then a soundbar is a sure fire way to improve things.