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Old 01-15-2022, 07:06 PM   #21
dunnbluray dunnbluray is offline
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Originally Posted by MrHT View Post
I put “upgrade” in quotes because I currently have a 5.1 audio setup (see my signature for equipment details) but it seems like AVRs are being phased out because people today rather have soundbars. I’m lucky if I can find one AVR in stock at a Best Buy or PC Richards store but they certainly have plenty of soundbars and I definitely see a lot of people buying them. So I think soundbars are pushing AVRs into obsolescence.

Seems like soundbars are popular since they are big space savers and many people have told me they sound just as good as a 5.1 speaker setup.

Anyone feel soundbars are worth getting and replacing my 5.1 setup?
I would completely recommend the Sonos ARC with 2 SL Ones and the Gen 3 Sub. The sound is amazing. I've been over other houses with AVR based systems and it sounds much better.

The Sonos system has a feature called Truplay which calibrates the sound to your room. The difference is night and day. You can easily switch between the 2 to hear the difference.

Some people complain about the sub because they base it off the size. The sub has quite the massive sound that it shakes my room if I turn it up. It's capable of going to +15 but I keep it at 0 because it's too much. You can setup 2 subs but I'm not sure why you will need to with how one sounds.

The system is quite pricey at 2,000.00. However, I bought each part in piece meal and turned out to be completely worth it. I have my vinyl system hooked up to it and it sounds immersive.

Last edited by dunnbluray; 01-15-2022 at 07:22 PM.
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Old 01-15-2022, 07:25 PM   #22
halloween5309 halloween5309 is offline
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i think zvox soundbars are great and afforable
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Old 01-16-2022, 11:09 AM   #23
CreasyBear CreasyBear is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ray Jackson View Post
What’s the best sound bar on the market that’s relatively affordable?

I don’t want to pay $500.

Maybe something for around $200.
Under $200, this would be my choice. I have experience with these Yamaha ones. We use them at work to show films and we have the one below this one and it does fill a large room with sound quite well.

https://www.bestbuy.com/site/yamaha-...?skuId=6358598
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Old 01-16-2022, 06:12 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by dunnbluray View Post
I would completely recommend the Sonos ARC with 2 SL Ones and the Gen 3 Sub. The sound is amazing. I've been over other houses with AVR based systems and it sounds much better.
My guess is that this is more a reflection on how bad the AVR-based systems you are comparing it to, how they are configured, and/or room dynamics then anything else.

Once you get to that higher price range it's hard for a soundbar to match an AVR-based system for sound quality. Everything about a soundbar is geared toward ease of setup, convenience, and low profile/streamlined presentation. The laws of physics are just against the soundbar. That said, soundbars obviously fulfill a place in the market since not everyone's priorities are the same.

I would think soundbars are most popular in the under $500 range since getting a capable AVR system with at least three speakers is more difficult at that price range. Over a $1000 an equally priced AVR system should beat a sound bar in sound quality, but for some form factor is more important.
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Old 01-16-2022, 08:50 PM   #25
Ray Jackson Ray Jackson is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CreasyBear View Post
Under $200, this would be my choice. I have experience with these Yamaha ones. We use them at work to show films and we have the one below this one and it does fill a large room with sound quite well.

https://www.bestbuy.com/site/yamaha-...?skuId=6358598
Appreciate it.🙏
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Old 01-17-2022, 01:55 AM   #26
Ray Jackson Ray Jackson is offline
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How would y’all rate this Vizio?

Looks like it has surround sound, which is nice.

…isn’t that what those two little boxes are for?

https://www.bestbuy.com/site/vizio-5...?skuId=6416784

Last edited by Ray Jackson; 01-17-2022 at 03:05 AM.
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Old 01-17-2022, 02:08 AM   #27
Pondosinatra Pondosinatra is offline
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My Sonos 'Playbar' soundbar in the garage sounds killer.
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Old 01-17-2022, 02:11 AM   #28
Pondosinatra Pondosinatra is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MrHT View Post
I put “upgrade” in quotes because I currently have a 5.1 audio setup (see my signature for equipment details) but it seems like AVRs are being phased out because people today rather have soundbars. I’m lucky if I can find one AVR in stock at a Best Buy or PC Richards store but they certainly have plenty of soundbars and I definitely see a lot of people buying them. So I think soundbars are pushing AVRs into obsolescence.

Seems like soundbars are popular since they are big space savers and many people have told me they sound just as good as a 5.1 speaker setup.

Anyone feel soundbars are worth getting and replacing my 5.1 setup?
Well no....yes they're miles better than the POS speakers in today's TV's....but they'll never replace 5.1.....3.1 maybe....but you lose the surround aspect.
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Old 01-17-2022, 02:12 AM   #29
Pondosinatra Pondosinatra is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ray Jackson View Post
What’s the best sound bar on the market that’s relatively affordable?

I don’t want to pay $500.

Maybe something for around $200.
Ray. Dude. You know I love you...but spend the money.
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Old 01-17-2022, 03:08 AM   #30
Ray Jackson Ray Jackson is offline
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Originally Posted by Pondosinatra View Post
Ray. Dude. You know I love you...but spend the money.
I just spent $400 on a pair of Jordan 1s on eBay.

I could give handjobs to old men under the Ferry St Bridge every night for the next two weeks and still not be able to afford a good sound bar.

…I’m not a very smart man.
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Old 01-17-2022, 03:20 AM   #31
Pondosinatra Pondosinatra is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ray Jackson View Post
...

I could give handjobs to old men under the Ferry St Bridge every night for the next two weeks and still not be able to afford a good sound bar.

...
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Old 01-17-2022, 05:04 AM   #32
Ray Jackson Ray Jackson is offline
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I know, it’s sad.

…but those Jordans weren’t gonna pay for themselves.
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Old 01-17-2022, 05:22 AM   #33
smithb smithb is offline
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…but those Jordans weren’t gonna pay for themselves.
I remember buying a pair of Air Jordan 2's red/white high tops back in 1985. A roommate worked at a golf shop and was able to order them for me. I believe they were around $50 new at the time. I only wore them in the gym. After about 15 years the foam layer started to decompose and they finally fell apart. Best basketball shoes I ever had.
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Old 01-18-2022, 01:21 AM   #34
dunnbluray dunnbluray is offline
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Originally Posted by smithb View Post
My guess is that this is more a reflection on how bad the AVR-based systems you are comparing it to, how they are configured, and/or room dynamics then anything else.

Once you get to that higher price range it's hard for a soundbar to match an AVR-based system for sound quality. Everything about a soundbar is geared toward ease of setup, convenience, and low profile/streamlined presentation. The laws of physics are just against the soundbar. That said, soundbars obviously fulfill a place in the market since not everyone's priorities are the same.

I would think soundbars are most popular in the under $500 range since getting a capable AVR system with at least three speakers is more difficult at that price range. Over a $1000 an equally priced AVR system should beat a sound bar in sound quality, but for some form factor is more important.
Nah, I assume you haven't heard a proper ARC system setup to compare to an AVR-based system.

I had friends come over and would tell me it wouldn't compare but are amazed once they hear it in person. I think the stigma of the word soundbar just makes it sound inferior but in reality it's just not the case. Of course there are AVR systems which will sound better but not at the price I'm willing to pay.
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Old 01-18-2022, 01:27 AM   #35
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Originally Posted by Race Bannon View Post
As an example of what sound bars are good for ( for anyone) I have a home theater with the whole 9 yards. But I have 5 other TV's in my house. I'm not going to trick out every den, every bedroom, every man cave type space like a home theater. Sound bars are quick and easy for those other spaces.
I don't think nobody would want a full sound system in every room in the house, just in the main home theater.
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Old 01-18-2022, 02:26 AM   #36
smithb smithb is offline
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Nah, I assume you haven't heard a proper ARC system setup to compare to an AVR-based system.

I had friends come over and would tell me it wouldn't compare but are amazed once they hear it in person. I think the stigma of the word soundbar just makes it sound inferior but in reality it's just not the case. Of course there are AVR systems which will sound better but not at the price I'm willing to pay.
You referred to a $2000 setup. I can say the same that you haven't heard a proper traditional AVR setup for the same price to compare.

I already referenced one earlier that I'm positive can beat it sound wise for less. Now it won't be as low profile or as easy to setup, but that is where the additional cost goes into the soundbar. While the traditional AVR setup may sacrifice simplicity and space for better sound, the soundbar approach sacrifices sound for simplicity and space.

This has nothing to do with stigma, but as I said physics. The size of the cones and cabinet area to create bass just aren't there in a soundbar. The subwoofer is more of what they call a bass module then true subwoofer (Bose made this famous) since it has to make up for deficiencies within the bar. The surround within the bar is based on processing to simulate the depth and distance between true separate speakers. The built in calibration is also standard in most AVR setup's.

At $500 or less I would recommend a soundbar as well. Over a $1000 I believe one can always do better with a traditional approach sound wise. I'm glad you are happy with your soundbar. At around $2000 it should sound good, but a portion of that $2000 went into compromising sound for the conveniences that a soundbar brings, and there is nothing wrong with that if that is where one's priorities lie.
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Old 01-18-2022, 10:08 AM   #37
CreasyBear CreasyBear is online now
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For $1,000, you could put together at least a good 3.0 or 3.1 setup and add surrounds later if you decide to. A good 3.0 setup with quality speakers will smack any soundbar out there.
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Old 01-18-2022, 01:29 PM   #38
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smithb View Post

This has nothing to do with stigma, but as I said physics. The size of the cones and cabinet area to create bass just aren't there in a soundbar. The subwoofer is more of what they call a bass module then true subwoofer (Bose made this famous) since it has to make up for deficiencies within the bar. The surround within the bar is based on processing to simulate the depth and distance between true separate speakers. The built in calibration is also standard in most AVR setup's.
Yes, any soundbar purporting to do surround from a single bar is using processing and/or accoustic trickery (side firers for bounce, etc). That's not necessarily a bad thing, some of the better ones do a great job at opening up the soundstage if one doesn't want or can't have a separate system. I chose my ZF9 bar for the loft because I wanted Atmos processing and 3.1 channels, but didn't want an AVR in a bedroom plus Atmos of the up-firing or ceiling variety wouldn't work with a heavily slopped ceiling. As I said earlier in the thread, it sounds notably inferior to the full blooded system in the living room, but in terms of compromise it's doing what I want. On a tangent, I did have the wireless surrounds for the Zf9 for discrete 5.1 with phantom Atmos processing, but it really didn't convince (as well as dropout issues with the signal) and I actually prefer it as a standalone 3.1 channel bar with it's processing trickery to widen and heighten the soundstage. IMHO bad surround implementation just detracts, not enhances the experience. The problem in this case was probably the severe lack of decent calibration options in a soundbar to compensate for room shape idiosynchronicity. AVRs win hands down for that sort of thing.

The "bass module" thing isn't totally exclusive to soundbars though, unless you have huge speakers you'd want an AVR to be doing the same as a soundbar. That's the crossover where the AVR rolls off the lower frequencies where the speakers response falls off into the subwoofer in addition to the true LFE channel, though a soundbar is likely going to have a higher crossover need than bookshelf-style separate speakers.

Speaking of size of cones and the like, I recently became interested in the Keff T-series, and am fascinated by how they combine the hefty sound of separate speakers with the low depth profile. I've read reviews that say they must have a subwoofer to handle the lower frequencies, but they do seem to be rather impressive still. You can have a full separate system with the T-series but with very discrete speakers!

Last edited by oddbox83; 01-18-2022 at 01:47 PM.
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Old 01-18-2022, 01:51 PM   #39
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Virtual surround from a soundbar only really works if you have a perfectly square or rectangle room.
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Old 01-18-2022, 02:42 PM   #40
smithb smithb is offline
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The "bass module" thing isn't totally exclusive to soundbars though, unless you have huge speakers you'd want an AVR to be doing the same as a soundbar. That's the crossover where the AVR rolls off the lower frequencies where the speakers response falls off into the subwoofer in addition to the true LFE channel, though a soundbar is likely going to have a higher crossover need than bookshelf-style separate speakers.
Yea, the reason I referenced it as a "bass module" in place of subwoofer is that subwoofers traditionally are for handling bass below the frequency of where one can locate the direction of the sound. If one has "large" front speakers this may be dedicated to just the ".1" channel. However, if one has bookshelf speakers then the crossover is generally set to "small" or 80Hz to handle the bass the bookshelf speakers can't. Just based on the design of a soundbar, the "bass module" is typically going to be configured at a higher then recommended crossover frequency, making the bass easier to locate. Also, the design/manufacturing of the bass modules I've seen for soundbars are rather cheaply constructed and under-powered. For <$500 soundbar this is more than adequate, but for >$1000 I'd rather have a legitimate subwoofer.

Again, soundbars have their place. We have 5 setups in my house, a dedicated HT with 7.1, two 3.0 AVR-based setups, and two using the TV speakers. The two using the TV speakers are in small bedrooms and for the most part sound fine. If they didn't I wouldn't hesitate to add $300 soundbars.

Another thing, if I had a $300 soundbar that died after a couple years, I wouldn't fret it and would just replace it. However, if I had a $1000 or more soundbar that went south after only a few years I'd be upset because it is an all-or-nothing item that must be replaced. Unlike like a traditional AVR setup.

Last edited by smithb; 01-18-2022 at 03:21 PM.
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