The Best Sound Bars

Table of Contents

TVs today are designed to be as slim as technologically possible, but the consequence is that sound equipment needs more room to breathe — literally. This is not to fault TV designers, but to look critically we can identify a few simple things that will have someone looking to improve their set up with a sound bar.

The obvious is that speakers in TVs are just smaller. Some TVs out now have speakers around the outer edges rather than centred in the back, which drastically helps for directing sound waves but this doesn’t make up for the fact that when a TV is only an inch thick that doesn’t leave a lot of room for the space to let sound grow. TVs have to be designed to be as light as possible, and so the encasement of the TV has the risk of rattling. Anything you watch that has very loud sounds and/or lots of bass runs the risk of being too powerful for those built in speakers — thereby shaking the plastic they’re built into.

The remedy? External speakers in the form of a sound bar. It can be a great addition to your TV for three major reasons:

  • As a piece of sound gear, it is designed solely for the best sound output possible (as opposed to a TV’s need for good sound and great display)
  • Cheaper than investing in something like a 5.1 surround sound system made up of satellite speakers
  • Aesthetically pleasing to look at

Below is a list of six sound bars from brands you know and love, including some of the sound equipment giants JBL and Bose. Some companies who design sound bars, such as Sony, also design TVs and so you can rest assured that if you love their TVs, you might enjoy the sound bars and accessories that go with it.

In addition to improving the sound quality of your movies and TV shows, many sound bars also include Bluetooth connectivity so that you can play from other devices as well — the best sound for all listening!

1. Editor's Pick: VMAI S5 Sound Bar - 36”

1. Editor's Pick: VMAI S5 Sound Bar - 36”
  • Compatible with your TV, projector, computer, Blu-ray player, tablet, gaming consoles, amplifier, etc.
  • Wall mountable
  • 2.0 is equivalent to two satellite speakers

Key Specs

Connections: Bluetooth, HDMI (ARC), Optical, AUX, and USB
Item Dimensions: 6.35cm x 9.4cm x 91.44cm
Item Weight: 1.81 kg

The VMAI S5 is a 2.0 system with two six-inch mid-range drivers and one-inch tweeters and their own power bass tech built-in for the low frequencies. With Bluetooth 5.0, you can connect your devices from anywhere within 50’ of your sound bar. What's more, it has four preloaded sound modes, making it perfect for movies, music and news — even in 3D.

2. Runner Up: Bomaker Sound Bar - 37”

2. Runner Up: Bomaker Sound Bar - 37”
  • With so many input options, you can listen from dozens of different devices
  • Wall mountable
  • 2.0 is equivalent to two satellite speakers

Key Specs

Connections: HDMI (ARC), Optical, AUX, USB
Item Dimensions: 96.52cm x 10.16cm x 7.62cm
Item Weight: 2.72 kg

This Bomaker is another 2.0 system with 4” x 2.25” bass/midrange drivers, two treble drivers, and bass reflex ports on both sides for great low ranges. With Bluetooth 5.0, you can connect from as far away as 33’, plus you also have USB and auxiliary inputs for wired playback. You can pick the best way to listen your games, music , movies, or news on its Bass or 3D feature platforms. It has six listening modes that will all sound great at the base of your TV, or on your entertainment unit.

3. Best Bass: VMAI 2.1 Sound Bar - 38”

3. Best Bass: VMAI 2.1 Sound Bar - 38”
  • Compatible with your TV, projector, computer, Blu-ray player, tablet, gaming consoles, amplifier, etc.
  • Bluetooth 5.0 — connect from up to 50" away
  • Lifetime support warranty
  • 2.1 is a quite basic “surround sound” feel - 5.1 is ideal for surround sound

Key Specs

Connections: HDMI (ARC), Optical, AUX, USB
Item Dimensions: 96.52cm x 10.16cm x 7.62cm
Item Weight: 2.72 kg

This VMAI is a step up from the previous model as this one is a 2.1 system — that’s right, a built in subwoofer! With the heightened bass from the subwoofer, you can get the most out of the four listening modes: music, movies, news, and 3D. The way a 2.1 system allows you to hear every whisper and feel every explosion will make you wonder how you ever lived without it.

4. Best Portable: JBL Bar 2.1 Deep Bass

4. Best Portable: JBL Bar 2.1 Deep Bass
  • 300W power makes every sound incredible
  • JBL Signature Bass technology
  • Elegant and subtle design
  • An added subwoofer means one more box to find room for

Key Specs

Connections: Bluetooth, HDMI (ARC), Optical
Soundbar Dimensions: 104.5cm x 40.49cm x 30.99 cm
Soundbar Item Weight: 10.23 kg
Subwoofer Dimensions: 24cm x 24cm x 37.9 cm
Subwoofer Item Weight: 5.67 kg

JBL is a well-known brand in the sound gear market for their incredible bass amplifying technology that makes this 2.1 system superb. It features four full-range drivers, two one-inch tweeters, and 6.5” subwoofer. It also has Dolby Digital, so you can get the best cinematic sound right in your living room.

As it's Bluetooth-enabled, you also get access JBL's signature bass through any of your smart devices. Although a tad bit more expensive than other models, it's worth every penny for its sound and portability.

5. Also Consider: Sony HT-S350 2.1CH Soundbar - 41”

5. Also Consider: Sony HT-S350 2.1CH Soundbar - 41”
  • In addition to sound modes, there are two sound effects: Night Mode, and Voice Mode
  • Wall mountable
  • Bluetooth latency is high when connected to a Bluetooth enabled TV for watching movies

Key Specs

Connections: Bluetooth, HDMI (ARC)
Soundbar Dimensions: 104.19cm x 51.69cm x 24.89 cm
Soundbar Item Weight: 12.7 kg
Subwoofer Dimensions: 19cm x 38.2cm x 39 cm
Subwoofer Item Weight: 7.8 kg

Do you already have a Sony TV? This is the sound bar for you! With 320W output power, all sounds come out strong and with the added subwoofer you have access to the full frequency range. This sound bar comes with seven sound modes: auto sound, cinema, music, game, news, sports, and standard.

6. Honourable Mention: Bose TV Speaker - 23”

6. Honourable Mention: Bose TV Speaker - 23”
  • One connection setup makes it easy to get listening
  • Easily add one the Bose Bass Module when you’re ready for more power
  • Subtle design that looks nice or hides easily
  • Designed to make your TV sound clearer and stronger, not necessarily louder

Key Specs

Connections: Bluetooth, Optical, HDMI (ARC)
Item Dimensions: 10.21 cm x 59.39 cm x 5.61 cm
Item Weight: 3 kg

Finally, the brand name we’ve all been waiting to see: Bose. Allowing you to connect to Bluetooth, this sound bar is designed to connect with most flat-screen TV models. While it doesn’t have a subwoofer, it doesn't need one. It's patented technology packs enough of a punch, whether it's for music, movies, TV, and more.

What to Consider When Buying a Sound Bar

Before you take the plunge and buy a sound bar, you’ll need to consider where in your space it’s going to go. Is your TV on a stand or mounted on the wall? Will your sound bar fit on a stand or the wall if there’s a TV also on it? Could you do one of each?

It may sound silly but this is actually one of the more important things to figure out. Speakers are directional, so it's important to buy a sound bar that can fit comfortably below your TV. From TV to viewer, most sound bars are designed to push sound waves towards a target directly in front of it.

It's important to note that if you choose to mount a sound bar on top of your TV, it has to be adjusted to cast sound downwards towards the couch, not the ceiling. Of course, personal preference and space limitations will play a factor in the way you display your new sound bar but it's recommended that you place it directly under your TV for the best results.

Next, most important thing to think about is whether you’re looking for a 2.0+ or 2.1+ sound setup. The "2" in both means two speakers, while the ".1" refers to the subwoofers. Any 2.0 is a pretty standard and is ideal for anyone looking for their TV to sound just a little bit better than its factory setting. A sound bar makes this easy and achievable without the mess of extra cables.

Sound bars are a great and relatively inexpensive way of bringing a strong audio element to your TV, filling your space with clearer and stronger sound than a TV’s speakers alone. When paired with a subwoofer, you can turn your living room into an impressive entertainment destination. With six great options above from brands that are tried and true, you won’t be disappointed when you’re set up and ready to go.

Leave a Comment

We're always looking for more feedback! If you own one of these sound bars and would like to share your experience, please comment below!

RedFlagDeals.com is reader-supported. We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program and other similar affiliate advertising programs. These programs are designed to provide a way for sites to earn advertising fees by linking to them. This means that RedFlagDeals.com will sometimes get a small commission if you make a purchase through our links.