Wireless Soundbars Raise Your TV’s Audio Game Without the Mess

Sony HT-G700 Soundbar
Courtesy of Sony

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When it comes to enhancing TV audio, gone are the days of investing in a full-fledged speaker system with an A/V receiver. Nowadays, if you’re looking to get better sound for your TV, all you have to do is invest in a great soundbar.

Traditionally, a soundbar connects directly to your TV using either a digital optical cable or an HDMI cable. This ensures that whatever is plugged into your TV, from cable boxes to game systems, will be able to utilize the soundbar for audio instead of your TV speakers.

But consider a wireless soundbar. Typically, a wireless soundbar connects not just to your TV (with an optical or HDMI cable), but also to your home Wi-Fi. This allows you to do things like stream music from mobile devices to the soundbar, and use built-in voice assistants like Alexa and Google Assistant to control your smart home, sort your weekly schedule and more.

Under the “wireless” umbrella, there are also soundbars that feature additional wireless components, like wireless subwoofer or wireless rear speakers for an immersive surround-sound experience.

If you like the idea of wireless integration for your soundbar, we’ve put together this list of the best wireless soundbars.

  

How We Chose the Best Wireless Soundbars

At SPY we take pride in our various research and testing processes, especially when it comes to audio products like soundbars. When putting together this roundup of the best wireless soundbars, here are a few of the most important categories that we considered.

  

Wireless Soundbar Sound Quality

First and foremost, we expect that every wireless soundbar on this list is going to sound great in your home. While many soundbars deliver the best sound when matched with the right-sized location, premium soundbars feature automatic audio calibration that adjusts the sound to match whatever acoustic environment into which it’s been placed. Other factors that affect sound quality are whether or not it comes with a wireless subwoofer for enhanced low-end frequencies, what kinds of audio codecs (think Dolby and DTS) the soundbar can decode and what materials were used in the design and engineering of the soundbar itself.

  

Wireless Capabilities

When choosing wireless soundbars, we made sure to select models that would introduce a wide array of Wi-Fi features to this roundup. While some lower-priced selections might only allow for Bluetooth pairing, our list also includes wireless soundbars that can pair to your Wi-Fi for music streaming purposes and voice assistant controls. Furthermore, we’ve made sure to include some soundbars with additional wireless peripherals, including wireless rear surround speakers and wireless subwoofers for added bass.

  

Wireless Soundbar Brand Reputation

Soundbars are a dime a dozen these days, with most TV manufacturers now producing their own soundbar options. While Samsung, Vizio and LG produce some incredible wireless soundbars, we also made sure to include as many dedicated audio brands in our list as possible. This isn’t always the rule, but wireless soundbar products from the likes of Sonos, Bose and others will generally be designed better than those made by TV companies, will include more inputs and outputs and will have more intuitive wireless features with which to control the product.

  

1. Sonos Arc Wireless Soundbar

BEST OVERALL

The directional-firing speakers, rounded design and wireless connectivity make this the wireless soundbar you want to own. The speakers fire sounds all around the room to create a true surround sound experience, even though it’s a single soundbar. And the Arc is completely controlled with the Sonos app on your phone. It supports all the major music streaming services, so you can enjoy wireless music streaming at its highest audio quality. Simply put, it’s the best wireless soundbar available right now.

sonos arc wireless soundbar Courtesy of Amazon

  

2. Vizio Elevate

RUNNER UP

When it comes to the best Dolby Wireless soundbars, the Vizio Elevate stands out from the pack thanks to this soundbar’s 18 separate drivers. But what makes this soundbar worth consideration is that the outermost speakers automatically turn upwards to provide the most immersive Dolby Atmos effect possible. This may not have all of the connectivity, voice assistant and streaming options as the Sonos Arc, but it does come bundled with a subwoofer and two satellites. If you did the same thing with the Sonos Arc it would cost nearly $2,000.

Vizio Elevate Dolby Atmos Soundbar Courtesy of Amazon

  

3. Yamaha YAS-209BL Wireless Soundbar

CONTENDER

The Yamaha YAS-209BL has a lot to like. It sounds fantastic, and the wireless subwoofer adds that extra thump to your favorite action movies or games. Thanks to the DTS Virtual:X, this soundbar setup truly pulls off surround sound like you’d get by adding additional speakers around the room. As far as other wireless features go, the 209BL has voice control via Amazon Alexa to control not only your soundbar but other Alexa-enabled devices throughout your home.

yamaha wireless soundbar Courtesy of Amazon

  

4. Sony HT-G700 Wireless Soundbar

BEST THEATER-LIKE QUALITY

By using the “vertical sound engine” built inside the G700, with the press of a button the soundbar delivers convincing theater-quality audio from the wireless subwoofer and soundbar setup. In our testing, sports, gaming and movies like Extraction put the soundbar’s impressive audio prowess on display. Even with all the tech used to create such an immersive soundbar, it’s really easy to install. It’s on the higher end in terms of price, but your dollars are well spent.

sony wireless soundbar Courtesy of Amazon

  

5. Bose Smart Soundbar 300

MOST FEATURES

Bose integrated a lot of great and useful features into a small package. For starters, you can use Wi-Fi or Bluetooth to stream music (we recommend Wi-Fi for better range and quality). But if you’re listening or watching and your significant other calls it a night, you can quickly connect a pair of Bose headphones to send all the audio to the headphones instead of through the soundbar. The 300 also has voice command through Alexa and Google Assistant compatibility. Oh, and it sounds great, too.

bose soundbar Courtesy of Bose

  

6. JBL Bar 5.1 Surround-Sound System

BEST COMPLETE SYSTEM

It’s one of the more expensive wireless systems on our list, but the JBL 5.1 Bar more than delivers the goods when it comes to room-filling, pulse-pounding sound. With the soundbar portion of the system handling front-channel left, right and center, the battery-powered wireless satellites add audio to the rear of your room. There’s also a wireless subwoofer for bass, Bluetooth connectivity and three 4K HDMI inputs for connecting your Blu-ray players and game systems.

jbl 5.1 bar Courtesy of Amazon

  

7. TCL Alto 7+ Wireless Soundbar

BEST VALUE

TCL offers a solid choice to upgrade your home entertainment system without going above $150. It comes with a subwoofer that connects wirelessly for enhanced bass performance. If you have a TV that sits low on the tabletop, the IR pass-through ensures that the soundbar won’t block the receiver on the TV from receiving the remote’s signal. It’s easy to set up and your wallet will thank you.

best wireless sound bar TCL Courtesy of Amazon
  

8. Polk Audio Signa S2 Wireless Soundbar

CLEAREST DIALOGUE

Do you ever watch movies or shows where the dialogue is really quiet and the action scenes almost explode your eardrums? The Signa S2 helps to eliminate this problem with VoiceAdjust, allowing you to customize the voice levels of the audio. So when you’re watching anything from Heat to Inception, while the wireless subwoofer is rumbling, you’ll still be able to hear all the dialogue clear as day. And when you’re not watching movies, you can stream music wirelessly from your phone or tablet to the Signa S2 thanks to Bluetooth connectivity.

polk wireless soundbar Courtesy of Amazon

  

9. Roku Streambar Pro

BEST MEDIA STREAMER

This wireless soundbar from Roku also acts as a streaming device. Once connected to your TV, you’ll have access to hundreds of Roku apps, including Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, HBO Max and more. The remote includes a microphone that allows you to raise and lower volume, search for shows and movies, toggle closed captions and more. Best of all: The Roku Streambar Pro is 4K-compatible, ensuring that you’ll get the very best picture from this media-driven wireless soundbar on your 4K TV.

 

roku streambar pro Courtesy of Amazon

  

10. Vizio V51-H6 Wireless Soundbar

AFFORDABLE 5.1 SETUP

The Vizio V-51H6 is as easy to set up as it is affordable. It’s optimized for 4K use, so the audio quality will finally be up to par with the visuals. The soundbar and included speakers are low-profile and slim, so you can easily slide the soundbar under the TV and hide the other two speakers on end tables or stands to blend right in. When you want to listen to music, you can connect wirelessly via Bluetooth. It’s a great full 5.1 option, especially if you’re on a budget.

vizio wireless soundbar Courtesy of Amazon

  

11. Sonos Beam

If you’re looking for a more affordable Sonos alternative, the Beam soundbar combines Sonos’ custom Wi-Fi streaming platform and voice assistant compatibility with Sonos’  well-earned reputation for audio quality to yield a smart system, sounds great and costs less than $500. It can be wirelessly paired with other Sonos speakers, such as the subwoofer, allowing you to create an immersive surround sound experience. And if you’d rather not listen too loudly, speech enhancement software makes movies audible without having to turn the knob to 100.

 

wireless soundbar Amazon

 

  
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