Building a home theatre can be quite a task. You need to choose the right amplifier along with the right speakers and the right subwoofer. Sure, you get home theatres in a box as a solution but there is still the mess of wiring the rear speakers to the amplifier. The soundbar has cemented itself as a simple plug and play solution for those looking to enhance their home audio experience. But soundbars are usually a package deal. You get the bar and in some cases, you get the bar and a subwoofer in the box. There are also some soundbars that come with surround speakers. But what if you aren't sure of what you need? What if you want to expand your soundbar experience to a surround sound experience? Well, sadly all soundbars aren’t upgradeable, but fortunately, there are some that are. If you are in the market to test the waters before investing in a surround experience, then know that these are some of the options available on Amazon. We have reviewed some of these soundbars and the others are here based on the specifications and features they bring to the table.
By itself, the Bose Soundbar 700 packs in quite a punch especially if you use it in a small room. The set-up process does take some time and that is because the bar tries to understand your seating position and simulate a surround sound experience without the need for surround sound speakers. Even though in a small room this may seem effective, it is when you add the surround modules that you realize what you are missing out on. You can purchase the Bar 700 separately, subwoofer separately and the surround speakers separately.
When you purchase the Sony HT-Z9F, you get the soundbar along with a wireless subwoofer in the box and the experience is enough for an immersive movie viewing experience. The soundbar boasts of support for formats like Dolby Atmos and DTS:X. It also has eARC (Enhanced Audio Return Channel) along with HDMI passthrough port. The passthrough port supports 4K HDR including Dolby Vision. The soundbar also has a mode called vertical surround and this expands the soundstage of the speaker. If you want to add a surround sound experience to this setup, you can do so by purchasing the surround speakers separately at a later date. It also has Bluetooth connectivity to let you stream music from your smartphone to the soundbar and additionally, it can also connect to the internet using WiFi or ethernet.
The Yamaha YAS 109 is a soundbar with built-in Alexa support. When you purchase it, you only get the bar in the box. It has bass drivers, so if you are one that wants a clean setup, you can check it out. However, if you feel the lack of bass when watching a movie or playing a game, know that you can add a subwoofer to the setup. The soundbar comes with a port where you can connect a subwoofer. The soundbar also supports DTS: X and surround sound. With Bluetooth connectivity, you can stream music from your smartphone to the TV with ease. It also has Clear Voice for enhanced dialogue clarity.
Just like the Bose Soundbar 700 above, the Bose Soundbar 500 is also upgradeable. You can add a subwoofer to it for that extra thump or even get wireless surround speakers for an immersive experience. The Bose Soundbar 500 can connect to the internet. The soundbar comes with Alexa support built-in, so you can ask the speaker to play your favourite tunes. You can also stream music from your smartphone to the speaker via Bluetooth and control the features of the soundbar from the companion app. It comes with a basic remote in the box, but you can upgrade it to a universal remote control for a better experience.