Should I get a Home Theater System or a Sound bar?
Your home entertainment setup is incomplete without the best quality speakers. Most of us are generally confused between picking home theater systems or sound bars. In sound bars, you can experience good sound quality and volume as a complete package, whereas in home theater systems you can get immersive audio experience. In this guide, we have compared the advantages and disadvantages of the two sound systems to help you determine the best option below.
Sound bars, a long rectangular device, are usually kept under the TV. It can be purchased or combined with a subwoofer for better bass. The sound bar can contain 2 to 7 speakers, it is recommended to use at least 3 to simulate the surround sound effect.
Home theater systems comprises of receiver, subwoofer and five speakers. These are installed in groups and are highly configurable, so you can start with a receiver and two speakers, and then expand.
Both sound bars and home theater systems provide better audio than the sound of the built-in television. This is because both systems provide more room for sound bounce.
Generally, the powerful speakers have higher power ratings, and many entry-level sound bars can absorb 100W of power. This power is quite sufficient for the average audience.
However, because the speakers are strategically located around the room, home theater systems are better suited for the most realistic surround sound experience.
If you separate the sound source between the speakers it will reduce the possibility of distortion at high volumes.
At the same price as cheaper sound bars, entry-level home theater systems typically have higher power consumption from 300W to 500W.
Certain sound bars provide virtual surround sound. If you search for mid-range sound bars in the market you will find units with five or seven different speakers capable of producing sound from each individual channel.
Sound bars like Sonos Beam have built-in support for digital assistants. It comprises of ports for connecting external media such as USB drives.
However, on home theater systems, the port selection is usually higher. The receiver acts as a hub for various other peripheral devices, such as a cable box, Blu-ray player or console.
When you look for buying sound systems, make sure it has enough ports so that all media sources can be connected.
Generally sound bars appear to be more affordable than multi-speaker home theater systems, but for high-end equipments this is not the case. The price range of sound bars is quite low, around Rs 1500 but it can go up to Rs 10000. The cheaper sound bars that support virtual surround sound are more expensive than home theater systems.
Therefore, a similar comparison between sound quality and functionality is needed to determine which will provide the best price/performance ratio.
You can compromise on sound quality for more comfort and choose a reasonably priced sound bar, or if convenience is not an issue, your home theater price may be higher and offer better in a range of lowest price.