Soundbar is setting up a new trend among Indians who care for sound. However, if we go through the claims made by a host of brands for their products and verify them through customer reviews, we feel the need for robust reviews based on actual performance of the products. Responding to this need, we have scrupulously sifted a handful of products that have won consumers over to them through performance, not promotion.
Table of Contents
- Best Soundbar Home Theatre System in India (2021)
- 1. Sony HT-S20R 5.1ch Dolby Digital Soundbar Home Theatre System (400W, Bluetooth Connectivity) – Black
- 2. Sony HT-RT3 Real 5.1ch Dolby Audio Soundbar Home Theatre System (600W, Dolby Audio, Bluetooth Connectivity) Black
- 3. Blaupunkt Germany’s SBW100 120W Wired Soundbar with Subwoofer, Bluetooth and HDMI Arc
- 4. JBL SB110 by Harman Powerful Wireless Soudbar with Built-in Subwoofer (110 Watts, 4 Woofers, Dolby Digital Sound)
- 5. Yamaha SR-C20A Compact Sound Bar with Built-in Subwoofer and Bluetooth
- 6. JBL Cinema SB231, 2.1 Channel Dolby Digital Soundbar with Wired Subwoofer for Deep Bass, Home Theatre with Remote, HDMI ARC, Bluetooth & Optical Connectivity (110W)
- 7. boAt Aavante Bar 1250 80W 2.1 Channel Bluetooth Soundbar with boAt Signature Sound, Wired Subwoofer, Bluetooth v5.0, Multiple Connectivity Modes, Entertainment Modes and Premium Finish (Premium Black)
- 8. boAt Aavante Bar 1160 60W Bluetooth Sound Bar with 2.0 Channel Signature Sound, Multiple Compatibility Modes, Sleek Design and Entertainment Eq Modes (Active Black)
- Best Soundbar Home Theatre System in India – A Buying Guide
- Best Soundbar Home Theatre System in India – Conclusion
Our Criteria for Assessing the Quality of Products
- Design & looks
- Output of power
- Number of channels
- Channel configurations
- Sound technologies
- Built-in or wired subwoofer
- Number of presets
- Customer reviews &
Best Soundbar Home Theatre System in India (2021)
1. Sony HT-S20R 5.1ch Dolby Digital Soundbar Home Theatre System (400W, Bluetooth Connectivity) – Black
- USB Audio Playback
- 5.1 channel soundbar
- Bluetooth connectivity for wireless audio streaming
Sony has always been the choice of the elite. Sony HT-S20R is no exception in that.
Please don’t misunderstand us when we use the term ‘elite’. The moment you use this term, it makes the object it describes to be exclusive, which it certainly is not. By elites we mean people who seek expression of their interpretation of life through sound. They are the people who know that sound is a powerful medium for subjective perception and self-expression. The purpose behind offering equalizer in a sound system is the same.
Interestingly, today’s audio systems are designed for high fidelity rendition of real life sounds and, at the same time, impregnate them with dramatic effects.
This Sony audio system makes use of 5.1 channel technology for achieving the dramatic effects we referred to. For the purpose it makes use of 3 channel soundbar, rear speaker and wired external subwoofer. When these combine their force, it is reflected in the surround sound effect. You experience the full impact of it when you watch movies like The Godfather, Apocalypse Now, Tron, Saving Private Ryan, etc.
When it comes to appreciation of sound effects, no less important is the contribution of sound technology like Dolby Digital and the power output that is generated through 400W.
Apart from the effects, provision is also made for sourcing the content in ways that we already know about. There is Bluetooth, USB and HDMI ARC connectivity for that. The whole thing is made extremely easy through a remote control that puts all important features right at your fingertips.
Indeed, Sony HT-S20R 5.1ch Dolby Digital Soundbar is one of the very best audio systems that are available in Indian marketCheck Sale Price
2. Sony HT-RT3 Real 5.1ch Dolby Audio Soundbar Home Theatre System (600W, Dolby Audio, Bluetooth Connectivity) Black
- 5.1 channel real surround sound
- 600W power output
- Bluetooth connectivity facilitated with NFC one-touch wireless audio streaming
- USB audio playback
- Facility of browsing playlist from pen-drive through Songpal app
Sony HT-RT3 Real 5.1ch Dolby Audio Soundbar Home Theatre System comes with some more technological enhancements in the system that you find in Sony HT-S20R. The 5.1 channel surround sound, Dolby Digital, the number of connectivity options, etc are some of the features that Sony HT-RT3 shares with Sony HT-S20R. So, in this review we shall deal with what is new in this system.
To begin with, there is 600W power output. Then, there is One-touch connection (Near Field Communication) to pair the system with your smartphone. This technology has proven excellence for connecting devices wirelessly. Another good facility for streaming music online is the SongPal app.
But the most important technology that needs mention, here, is ClearAudio+. It is great at discovering the music that you are playing and automatically adjusting sounds to the sound fields. It also markedly shows any variation that may be introduced through different audio format that it is handling.
If there is no budget constraint to keep within the range of Rs. 10000/-, then you should certainly go for Sony HT-RT3 Soundbar. It’s an investment.Check Sale Price
3. Blaupunkt Germany’s SBW100 120W Wired Soundbar with Subwoofer, Bluetooth and HDMI Arc
- German technology
- Wired subwoofer to deliver heavy bass together with loud volume
- Blaupunkt EQ Mode
- Multiple Input options
- Side firing woofer
- Wall mountable satellite
- Fully functional remote
Germany has been at the forefront of technological innovation and anything that comes from her is globally held in respect. Of course, Blaupunkt SBW100 120W doesn’t bring you anything that is out of the ordinary but it certainly belongs to the high tradition of German technology. The good news is that you have it at an extremely competitive prize.
The unique selling points of this soundbar is its 2.1 channel system that employs one left, one right and one side-firing subwoofer. With the 2.1 channels and 120W, the system produces superb sound quality that is both loud and clear.
There is one flaw in the design of this product and it is to be found in its display. It appears behind the grill of the soundbar and is not clear to the same degree as it is in many other products.
The fully functional remote control makes it absolutely easy to operate.
Overall, Blaupunkt SBW100 120W returns value on money.Check Sale Price
4. JBL SB110 by Harman Powerful Wireless Soudbar with Built-in Subwoofer (110 Watts, 4 Woofers, Dolby Digital Sound)
- 40Hz – 20kHz frequency response
- Max SPL 82 dB
- Built-in sub woofer for deep bass
- Wireless music streaming through Bluetooth
- One cable connection with HDMI ARC
- 1 year manufacturer’s warranty
JBL SB110 is configured to keep you free from the hassle of a wired subwoofer. You have built-in subwoofer here. When it is accompanied by Dolby Digital sound and 110W output, you are sure not to miss the full romance of watching a movie or some real good music.
Its maximum sound pressure level is 82 dB, which is more than enough to blow up your upper storey. If you’re a good listener, you’ll prefer music of sound instead of noise thereof.
It offers HDMI ARC for connecting it to your TV. There is also Bluetooth to enable you to stream music from the infinite resources that are available online.
What’s more, all features are made easy to use through dedicated buttons on a remote control. You can straightaway switch from BT to HDMI to Movie to News to Optical to Music.
Finally, JBL SB110 perfectly fits your budget. When any American brand allows you to have its offering, which is always qualitatively competitive, at a price well below Rs. 10000/-, then it must be considered liberal.Check Sale Price
5. Yamaha SR-C20A Compact Sound Bar with Built-in Subwoofer and Bluetooth
- Built-in subwoofer
- Passive radiators for superior bass quality
- Clear Voice for enhanced dialogue clarity
- Simple setup with HDMI, optical or aux connections
- Wall mountable
Yamaha SR-C20A is a truly compact system which is small in size but big in performance.
It has two 1.8 inch drivers on its sides and 3 inch woofer on top. Another important element in it is the passive sound radiator it uses. It is the type of radiator that doesn’t feature voice coil to generate sound. Rather it allows itself to be moved sympathetically with the sound pressure that is trapped in the cabinet.
That brings us to its four-fold sound program that includes Stereo, Standard, Movie and Game. These so well refer to the purpose for which they are introduced that it hardly needs saying which one you should use for what.
It is an excellent way to enhance the sound of your TV. As you know, the built-in speakers of your TV are not quite satisfying if you really want to experience the thrill of watching movies, videos, etc. If you want a truly cinematic experience, you need to connect it to external sound system like soundbars and tower speakers. But, of the two the former is a better option because of its form factor.
The one feature that is going to enhance your joy of watching movies greatly is Clear Voice. Through all the background music it sifts the human voice so thoroughly that you won’t miss important dialogues.
Finally, there is a remote that allows you to choose with great ease any of the connectivity (Optical, Bluetooth 5.0, Analog, etc) options, sound programs, bass extension, Clear Voice, etc. But if you like, you can also make use of soundbar app.
If we are to sum it up with utmost brevity, we’d call Yamaha SR-C20A to be out and out Japanese. That’s reason enough to buy it! It is one of the best that Indian market has to show.Check Sale Price
6. JBL Cinema SB231, 2.1 Channel Dolby Digital Soundbar with Wired Subwoofer for Deep Bass, Home Theatre with Remote, HDMI ARC, Bluetooth & Optical Connectivity (110W)
- 2.1 channel soundbar with wired subwoofer
- Dolby Digital
- HDMI ARC
- 1 year manufacturer’s warranty
JBL Cinema SB231 will hem you in with its powerful 110W output, a perfectly deep bass through a subwoofer wired to the soundbar, and embedded Dolby Digital.
This is the kind of combination that would be considered best in bringing out the full potential that sound has. In order to put sound in a better situational context, you have Movie, Music and News.
As usual, you have Bluetooth, HDMI ARC and Optical cable for connecting the system with different sources of content. The options to switch from one track to another and volume increase and decrease also remain the same as elsewhere.Check Sale Price
7. boAt Aavante Bar 1250 80W 2.1 Channel Bluetooth Soundbar with boAt Signature Sound, Wired Subwoofer, Bluetooth v5.0, Multiple Connectivity Modes, Entertainment Modes and Premium Finish (Premium Black)
- 2.1 channel sound
- Connectivity through Bluetooth V5.0, AUX and USB
- 40W wired subwoofer
- Multiple modes such as NEWS, MOVIES, MUSIC & 3D
boAt Aavante Bar 1250, along with the subwoofer, wears a truly premium looks with its sleek black surfaces and grill that veils the drivers. What else, it doesn’t bring you innovation; rather it is aimed to deliver quality.
The connectivity options, sound programs, volume increase and decrease buttons, bass and treble controls…These are there as a rule. The important thing is that when the rule applies, you don’t find anything missing in it – whether we talk about technologies used in it or the sheer joy of listening that it offers.Check Sale Price
8. boAt Aavante Bar 1160 60W Bluetooth Sound Bar with 2.0 Channel Signature Sound, Multiple Compatibility Modes, Sleek Design and Entertainment Eq Modes (Active Black)
- Easy operational control through remote control
- Bluetooth V4.2/AUX/USB with versatile Aavante 1160
- Signal Noise Ratio ≥ 72 dB
- 2.0 channel sound
- Different modes such as NEWS, MOVIES, MUSIC, etc
boAt Aavante Bar 1160 60W is a perfect boat to carry sound to your dock.
It has four 2.25 inch dynamic drivers, which serve their purpose in delivering quality sound. But, since it is a 2.0 channel system, you will miss the kind of depth that you expect from a separate subwoofer.
The 60W output is certainly better than the in-built speakers of TV. If you are not skilled at balancing the sound precisely, then no worries! You have a sound program in this device that offers four presets: News, Movies, Music and 3D. But if you can manage it, you have the option to adjust the bass and treble with dedicated buttons for them.
As for connectivity, it offers Bluetooth 5.0, Aux and USB.
Given its price, the features that boAt Aavante Bar 1160 incorporates certainly make it the best choice in its category.Check Sale Price
Best Soundbar Home Theatre System in India – A Buying Guide
If anything, soundbar can be aptly described as a bar-shaped sound. It’s convenient, portable and as sophisticated as a music system can be. But before we move on to talk specifically about sound bar, it is good we briefly touch the basic technology that is employed in speakers.
Basic Speaker Technology
The main components used in the manufacture of speakers include the box of varying materials such as wood and plastic housing a coil, magnet, spider, diaphragm and speaker basket. The coil or voice coil is there to generate electromagnetic field through electric current. This field keeps on altering the orientation of its magnetic poles, which directly affect the interaction between the ever-changing electromagnetic field and permanent magnet. This turns electrical energy into mechanical, causing the coil and diaphragm to move. It produces vibration in the speaker basket. That vibration is passed on to the air that is before the speaker and, exactly, this air is the sound wave that we hear.
In the present generation of speakers, the manufacturers are employing their own technical knowhow in order to improve the quality of sound.
Soundbar is a uniquely designed music system that makes it absolutely convenient for you to place it in the room where you intend to use it. And it is as easy to set up and to use as any sound system can be. Interestingly, its form factor is utterly adequate to accommodate all the technological enhancements and their manifestations in the form of features.
For setting it up with other smart devices, there is given a number of ports such as Aux, line in, USB, HDMI and HDMI ARC. The modes of connectivity are also known to have considerable impact on the quality of sound. That is the reason why very often when the audio system is connected through line-in, the audio quality is quite ordinary. But, if the same system is connected through Bluetooth, the resultant experience proves extraordinary.
You yourself can try out using different ports for connectivity and check out the difference in the quality that different modes of connectivity produce.
Whether you connect it with your TV or stream music online, the level of technological sophistication it has is sure to bring you a real treat for your ears. Since we referred to technology, we must name eARC and AV receiver here.
All that you find in other types of speakers, you find here. We cannot take comparative view of different types of sound systems and pass value judgments. It won’t be considered practical for the simple reason that they are designed keeping their respective context in view.
So, when we assess any soundbar, it is on the basis of how it is configured…how many satellite speakers and subwoofers are incorporated in it for achieving the desired sound effects.
Also, important is the way it allows you to personalize your audio experience. You have option to make use of presets as well as EQ settings for perfectly balancing bass and treble.
Things to Look Out for While Buying a Soundbar
Bluetooth: It is a norm even in the entry level products to offer this feature. All you need to look out for is which version is offered in a given device. This is because it is the version that impacts its efficiency in terms of the range within which it operates and its speed.
If you find Bluetooth 5.0, then it is best. However, Bluetooth did launch version 5.2 in the January of 2020. It will take some time before we find support for it in different devices. Even if it is used in any device, we don’t know about it; and so we choose not to say anything about it. However, we’d certainly refer to version 5.0 as the latest for the sake of convenience.
However, the purpose of Bluetooth remains the same, notwithstanding which version it is. It is to connect different devices for the purpose of data sharing. It is absolutely effective in connecting soundbar with your smartphone or TV or laptop. From device to device, as stated before, the quality of connectivity may differ in terms of its range.
By the way, there is a new technology that has recently arrived on the scene. It is called Near Field communication (NFC). There are systems out there that allow you to connect devices through it.
Sound dispensation: There are systems that deliver 360˚ sound dispensation. They have evolved so impressively that their efficiency doesn’t depend on acoustic quality of the room in which they are installed.
Ease of placement and setup: Soundbar is designed in such a way that even if it is long, it won’t be a problem for you to decide where to place it. Its height and breadth are such that you can place it right at the foot of your TV set or mount it on a wall. Wherever you place it, it will grace your room.
As regards setup, just like any other sound system, soundbar is also endowed with all the ports that are needed for it. Either by using these ports or Bluetooth or NFC or a voice assistant, you can easily set up your system to work with other devices. Support for Alexa and Google Assistant should be considered welcome since it allows you to operate it just by giving voice commands. You simply cannot expect a system to get easier than that.
Sound quality: Obviously, it is the most important part in a music system. In most devices it depends upon the combination of satellite speakers and subwoofers. Some systems do not stop at featuring a subwoofer but go on to introduce extra subwoofers. Some sound systems offer up to 10 drivers. But how well they handle different frequencies…on that relies your listening experience. It is known by experience that the 5.1 channel system delivers the best results.
Having said that, it must be added that audio quality is not determined by the combination of channels alone. The range of audio effects is truly impressive and it does necessitate inclusion of EQ by which you can customize audio by increasing or decreasing bass and treble.
You may adjust sound settings till it comes to contain the kind of appeal that you want to find in it. But for some who don’t want to be faced with the hassle that is involved in adjusting the sound using EQ every time a sound track changes or the nature of audio changes, then, for them, there is an easy way out in the form of presets like Movie, News, Music, etc. It is just another way to create the most suitable sound profile. By most suitable we mean to say quality processing of various frequencies to bring about clarity as well as dramatic effects in sound.
There is technology available to music systems that adjusts itself to the acoustic properties of the room. How effective it is can be seen from the way it plays out while watching movies that are full of action and sound effects. It has a way to keep the dialogue in the forefront and suppress the background music in such a way that you neither miss dialogues nor sound effects.
We know of soundbars that are designed to produce sounds that fall in the range between 20Hz and 20Khz. Bear this range in mind. It will help you when you come across references to frequencies that fall in this range.
Miscellaneous features: These include features such as…
- Technologies like Dolby Atmos and DTS
- Passive radiator for bass
- Crossover frequency…It needs to have the minimum level of 80Hz and maximum 200Hz. If this frequency is lower, the sound suffers by 3 decibels
- What material is used in the manufacture of drivers and coils. Copper coils are the best. The cones may consist of plastic, different kinds of metals, papers and even woven glass
- Detachable components that may allow you to strategically place them to maximize their efficacy
- Wireless speakers. These are good but see to it how long they last.
Best Soundbar Home Theatre System in India – Conclusion
Soundbars are a category that is making a stir in the market for reasons we have amply made clear. It is good that within this category, we can also trace other sub-categories. We can fairly locate entry level, mid-range and high-end products in it. They are showing varying levels of sophistication and that’s what makes it difficult for you to pick one product for yourself. Let’s assure you that the products that are reviewed, here, are certainly best in their respective category. We highly recommend you choose one for yourself from our selection. You’ll be amply rewarded for it. Enjoy…
Last update on 2021-09-19 / Images from Amazon