Soundbars are great for upgrading your surround sound, but there are a few things you should know before deciding on which ones to get. Some may have basic flaws that are not obvious until you’re doing the setup.
It May Block The TV’s Remote Sensor
On photos, it is often apparent that the soundbars are wall-mounted just below the TV; however, some people opt for placing the soundbar on the TV stand. This is not favorable since larger soundbars can block the TV’s remote control sensor, which is not ideal for the angle that you need to control the TV. When purchasing a soundbar, particularly a tall model, it is worth checking to see where the TV’s remote sensor is and if the soundbar has a probability of blocking it. Alternatively, you can choose base systems that are designed to be installed under the TV, so that they are not in the way.
Many Soundbars Are Not Equipped With A Remote
Most home theater systems come with a remote, but soundbars are the exclusion. Some models do not include a remote but instead rely on the programming of the soundbar to be controlled via the TV’s remote. Theoretically, it may seem like a good option, but in practice, it is not. The obstacle is that during setup, you will be necessitated to disable the internal speaker of the TV to avoid getting sound from both the soundbar and TV. Therefore, when you use your TV remote to change the volume on the soundbar, the TV will still get volume commands and might display an error message, saying that you’ve disabled the speakers. You can read this page for more information on the best soundbars.
Virtual Surround Is Just Broader Stereo
Just about every soundbar has some form of “virtual surround” mode, which promises to deliver surround sound without the need for rear speakers. The virtual surround modes are not nearly the same as surround sound. At best, they will broaden the sound field for the soundbar to sound more prominent than it’s actual size.
It May Not Have A Front-Panel Display
This has improved in recent years; however, there are still many soundbars available for purchase that don’t have a front-panel display. You don’t necessitate a lot of visual feedback from the soundbar, but it is useful to know the input you’ve selected or how high the volume is. When the soundbar only has a basic LED on the front, you won't know whether the volume is maxed out or if you still have headroom left.
Connectivity May Not Be As Crucial As You Think
Most home theater systems nowadays use HDMI, but it doesn’t necessarily mean that you require HDMI ports on your soundbar. You can instead connect the home theater devices to the TV, then utilize the TV’s audio output for connecting the soundbar. Therefore, when you change the inputs on the TV, you will also change what audio is being sent to the soundbar. It is a slightly more advanced setup since you will only need one cable that runs to the soundbar.