Sounds Good

Best sound­bars to go with mid-range TVs

Gadgets and Gizmos (India) - - CONTENTS - BY NIDHI SIN­GAL @nid­hisin­gal

Slim is in, es­pe­cially when it comes to TVs. No mat­ter what your bud­get, you can get a fea­ture-rich, slim, LED TV that suits your whim. Although these sleek TVs come with high-res­o­lu­tion pan­els and a host of con­nec­tiv­ity op­tions, the sound qual­ity leaves a lot to be de­sired – there is lit­tle or no room for a de- cent speaker to be fit­ted in. Can’t have ev­ery­thing, right? But those of you who take sound qual­ity se­ri­ously, this is hardly a worry. Au­dio equip­ment man­u­fac­tur­ers are of­fer­ing sound­bars, that en­hance the au­dio per­for­mance of TVs, are un­ob­tru­sive and aes­thet­i­cally de­signed. They can be mounted on the wall or be placed on a cab­i­net be­low the TV.

The In­dian mar­ket, which is flooded with af­ford­able LED TVs from brands such as Xiaomi, VU, TCL and Sanyo, is an at­trac­tive mar­ket for sound­bars. San­tosh Varghese, Gen­eral Man­ager, Toshiba Gulf FZE, says that In­dia’s au­dio mar­ket is poised to reach

the billion-dol­lar mark by 2020; a size­able portion of this will come from sound­bars due to the in­creas­ing adop­tion of LED TVs.

We give you a glimpse of some of the finest sound­bars in the mar­ket.

JBL, a sought-af­ter name in the au­dio equip­ment space, of­fers a range of sound­bars start­ing from 9,999 to 50,000. The JBL Bar Stu­dio 2.0 Chan­nel Sound­bar, the most af­ford­able of the lot, is a sleek, all-in-one sound­bar with one woofer and two tweet­ers. It can be paired with the TV over Blue­tooth or con­nected us­ing an HDMI ca­ble. With sur­round sound, dou­ble bass ports and a max­i­mum power of 30W, this of­fers a pretty im­mer­sive ex­pe­ri­ence. You can use the phys­i­cal con­trols, the speaker re­mote or se­lect the TV re­mote to con­trol the sound­bar.

Toshiba’s TY-SBX210 sound­bar is a 2.0 chan­nel sound­bar that of­fers 50W of clear sound out­put. It of­fers wired and wire­less con­nec­tiv­ity; sup­ports Op­ti­cal In­put, HDMI In­put and 3.5mm Aux-in ports. Priced at 11,799, it comes with three equaliser pre­sets for movies, news and mu­sic that ad­just and balance the sound fre­quency to suit your needs. There is also SBX1000, priced at

14,899, which is a 2.1 sys­tem fea­tur­ing pow­er­ful speak­ers and built-in sub­woofer, de­liv­er­ing a to­tal power of 60W. This, too, sup­ports the con­nec­tiv­ity op­tions men­tioned above, and sup­ports Blue­tooth 3.0 with upto 10-me­tre range.

A more af­ford­able op­tion is the Philips HTL1031/94, priced at 10,000. It comes with a 2.1 chan­nel wired sub­woofer, of­fer­ing a sound out­put of 30W. This isn’t a wire­less sound­bar; it needs to be con­nected to the TV us­ing the Aux-In port. It also has a fixed FM an­tenna and USB sup­port (upto 16 GB).

For those look­ing for an ex­trav­a­gantly im­mer­sive sound ex­pe­ri­ence, and will­ing to spend more, the Yamaha YAS107 sound­bar for

19,500 is an op­tion worth con­sid­er­ing. This is an ul­tra-slim sound­bar that can con­nect to the TV over Blue­tooth and comes with a builtin sub­woofer of­fer­ing 120W of sound out­put. One can also at­tach a sub­woofer us­ing a ca­ble. If the TV it is be­ing plugged into is com­pat­i­ble with HDMI-CEC, the sound­bar can be con­trolled us­ing the TV re­mote as well. The Home The­ater Con­troller app that al­lows se­lect­ing the in­put se­lec­tion, sur­round mode and sound ad­just­ment, is an added ad­van­tage.

Over time, con­sumers can ex­pect many more of­fer­ings in this space. The sound­bar mar­ket, Zion Mar­ket Re­search states, is grow­ing at a CAGR of 10.6 per cent. “Wire­less tech­nologi­wes, such as Blue­tooth and Wi-Fi, have boosted the de­mand of this seg­ment of au­dio gad­gets,” says Su­mit Chauhan, VP and Gen­eral Man­ager, Lifestyle Con­sumer Au­dio, Har­man In­dia.

2.1 sys­tem with two 15W speak­ers and a 30W built-in sub­woofer Phys­i­cal con­trols plus re­mote make it easy to op­er­ate

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