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How to Find the Right Soundbar
If you want better sound than you’re getting from your TV’s built-in speakers but you don’t want to piece together a variety of separate components (such as an AV or stereo receiver and a speaker package), a soundbar is the way to go. Separate components almost always provide better performance for your dollar, but they also take up more space and require additional cables, and their operation is more complicated. A good soundbar strikes a balance between performance and convenience, delivering improved sound quality in a package that’s easier to set up and use.
Today’s soundbars aren’t just for TV and movie watching, either. Most support some method of wireless audio streaming, such as over Bluetooth or Wi-Fi. This feature allows you to stream music from mobile devices such as smartphones, tablets, computers, and portable audio players.
If your top priority is getting the best surround-sound experience or you have a lot of sources to connect to your TV, you’re better off with an AV receiver and a multi-channel speaker system. If you just need a simple audio setup with no video pass-through, you might also consider wireless powered bookshelf speakers or a stereo receiver and a pair of bookshelf speakers.