£699 • From www.currys.co.uk VERDICT A brilliant soundbar that’s versatile, sounds great and produces phenomenal bass without a subwoofer
AS THE NEWEST and most expensive of Samsung’s HW-MS soundbars, the HW-MS750 has the tough job of following the HW-MS650. Both are single-body models without a dedicated subwoofer, and although the HW-MS750 costs nearly £300 more, at first glance it’s hard to see why.
Once you start listening to it, however, it becomes clear that the HW-MS750 is a big step up in terms of sheer sound quality, especially when it comes to the lower frequencies.
Once again, this is a Samsung soundbar that’s best suited to larger TVs and rooms: it measures 1,150mm across, so pairs well with TVs 49in and larger in size, and it can be wall-mounted using the bundled bracket and attached beneath compatible Samsung TVs with the optional TV mount. It’s not too tall, so if you want to place it in front of your TV it should fit perfectly well without getting in the way of the picture.
This is not just a TV speaker, however. Yes, you can use it for movie, TV and gaming audio duties, but Samsung also wants it to be your main speaker for music and wireless audio streaming, so you can play tunes directly to it from your phone or over your home network via Spotify Connect or the Samsung app.
When it comes to connections, the HW-MS750 has it all. Physical connections are all located in a cutout underneath the soundbar, and you get everything you need. There are three HDMI ports – two inputs, both 4K passthrough-enabled and one ARC-enabled output – one 3.5mm input jack and an optical S/PDIF input.
Wireless connectivity includes Bluetooth, so you can play tunes directly from mobile devices, and Wi-Fi for playback via Spotify Connect or other streaming services. These are accessed via the Samsung Wireless
Audio-Multiroom app and include Tidal, TuneIn, Deezer and Qobuz. You can also stream music from files stored in shared network folders, and owners of compatible Samsung TVs can also stream audio wirelessly to the soundbar via Bluetooth or Wi-Fi.
Design-wise, the HW-MS750 is attractive and well made, but rather staid. It’s wrapped mainly in a perforated steel grill, with a mix of plastic and aluminium trim to set it off and everything – bar the silver control buttons on the right end panel – is finished in black. There’s a white OLED display showing status, volume levels and the like beneath the grille on the right-hand side, with a couple of small LEDs above it, but that’s your lot when it comes to visual appeal.
The remote control is pretty plain, too, but it’s wonderfully usable. It’s compact and slim, very comfortable to hold and keeps the number of buttons to a minimum.
As per usual for soundbars, the HW-MS750 has a number of different sound profiles, tailored for different duties. However, we found ourselves defaulting to the Surround Sound option, which uses the HW-MS750’s 450W of power and 11 drivers to spread audio around your room in an attempt to simulate a multispeaker setup.
It’s remarkably effective, and while it doesn’t quite create the height and convincing sound bubble that the Samsung HW-K850 (Shopper 353) does – mainly owing to the lack of Dolby Atmos support – it’s still impressive. Audio appears to come from the sides and around you, and there’s a real sense of depth and positioning to sound effects, with voices and speech clear and intelligible at all times.
We were worried about the lack of a separate subwoofer, but the HW-MS750 quickly overcame our fears. Samsung’s anti-distortion technology works here to produce a
phenomenal amount of low-end thump, which Samsung says reaches right the way down to 27Hz. You can add that £499 SWA-W700 wireless subwoofer if you really want the deepest sound possible, but the soundbar alone should easily suffice for most people’s needs. The bass it kicks out is astonishing for a speaker this slim; importantly, it’s a big improvement on the HW-MS650, which doesn’t reach down as low.
And the HW-MS750 performs just as well with music as it does with film soundtracks, with a huge acreage of soundstage and a sense of clarity and dynamism that makes your skin tingle.
The only gripe we have is that, with some tracks, the sheer clarity of detail it’s capable of reproducing at the top end of the audio spectrum can clash and grate a little on the ears. The flip side is that the HW-MS750 is capable of creating a huge amount of atmosphere in quiet acoustic tracks, picking out the nuances in live recordings that other soundbars can only dream of.
If there’s one thing that’s abundantly clear, the Samsung HW-MS750 is the most technically excellent standalone soundbar you can buy. There’s nothing else that comes close to the scale of sound, the soundstage and the sense of atmosphere that this soundbar is capable of reproducing. And the amount of gutrumbling bass it pumps out without needing a subwoofer is truly outstanding.
If you need a soundbar and have no room for a sub, there’s simply nothing bettersounding you can spend your money on. The only problem, on that note, is with the value. It’s a pricey £699, and the only slightly less impressive HW-MS650 can currently be had for a comparatively reasonable £419. Still, if you want the very best, you most certainly won’t be disappointed with the HW-MS750.