Q: I’ve had a Bose V25 Lifestyle system for seven years. I recently sold my condo, and the buyer wants my 75″ TV and the Bose system. So, now I’m in the market for a new TV sound system. In December, you recommended several soundbars on TWiT’s Tech News Weekly show. Can you give me your recommendations for a new soundbar? I’d like to keep the cost under $800.
– Randall Powers (chopper69)
A: Here’s my segment on that episode of Tech News Weekly:
In the interview, I talk about the technology of soundbars and refer to the AVS Forum article entitled “Best Soundbars of 2017.” The article includes the best soundbars we’ve reviewed, but there are others I also recommend based on anecdotal experience.
As I said in the interview, the least-expensive soundbars I generally recommend come from Vizio. That company makes good-sounding models in a variety of sizes and configurations, including 2.0, 2.1, 3.0, 3.1, and 5.1. The “.1″ configurations include a wireless subwoofer, and the 5.1 models also include separate wireless surround speakers. Sizes range from 28″ to 45″ to match TVs of different sizes, and prices range from $80 to $500. If you’re going to get a new 75” TV, you’ll obviously want the largest of these soundbars, which is still well within your budget.
Given your budget, however, I would seriously consider the Samsung Sound+ HW-MS750, which lists for $700. That doesn’t include a subwoofer, which you can add later for another $500. As of this writing, the HW-MS750 is on sale for $550 on the Samsung online store, and the SWA-W700 wireless subwoofer is $400. If you can stretch your budget to $950, this would be a killer combo.
If you want a subwoofer right away without exceeding your budget, consider the Samsung Sound+ HW-MS650 with the SWA-S700 sub. As of this writing, the HW-MS650 is $400 on the Samsung online store (down from $500), and the SWA-W700 is $400 (also down from $500), which brings the total to your exact budget. This would be a superb soundbar-based system.
Once you have a bit more discretionary cash, you can add a pair of wireless surround speakers to the HW-MS750 or MS650 with the SWA-9000S kit for another $180. You’d be hard pressed to beat that system with an AV receiver and separate speakers for a total of $1000 or $1200.
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