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post #91 of 146 Old 04-16-2012, 03:40 PM
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Originally Posted by JohnyBGood View Post

I recently set up some really old Paradigm Mini Monitors (I also have an old set of Energy w/ centre I could use...except the centre may be 1-2" too tall in front of my tv). It looks very cluttered now, but sounds good except for the fact that both of my receivers aged poorly and need replacing (no digital inputs). I also recently discovered high end mail order tower speakers that I'd wanna try if I were to keep a 2.0 setup. So I'm trying to figure out the best move (mainly for music)...expensive 2.0 I can't really afford, or sound bar that makes the living room presentably clean and improves movie viewing. I need 1X digital optical (PS3), 1X digital coax (PC) & 1X analogue (digital tv)...so the HK SB 30 would be perfect if I actually had a way to buy/try one in Canada.

NOTE: Someone mentioned earlier that wireless subs are a great feature that maintains a sound bar's clean setup, but I noticed a few Paradigm subwoofer models on the Paradigm site that let you place them wirelessly (transmitter hooks to receiver). Just wanted to state that money can get you wireless subs in a regular theatre setup...

Check out the Minx thread, which has reviews appended. The Minxes are small, but produce tremendous sound using a unique driver.
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post #92 of 146 Old 04-17-2012, 03:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MaKHung View Post

The sb30 easily program with my directv remote, but beware this sound bar remote is only good up to 30-35 feet, which this was a big problem with me.

Which code did you use? I used all the ones offered by directv for Harmon kardon and none of them worked.
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post #93 of 146 Old 04-18-2012, 08:24 AM
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A quick first impression...

I brought home the SB30 last night to compare with the Bose Cinemate GS II. I only had a half hour or so to test and will do more tonight. My first impressions were that the SB30 sounds excellent!

When listening to music, the Cinemate has a slightly "crisper" sound - cymbals and voices are cleaner and more pronounced. However after listening for awhile, the sound gets tiring to the ears. Voices and instruments on the SB30 sound "warmer". I know these are lousy descriptions, but the best way for me to describe the difference.

Bass on the SB30 is surprisingly good for an 8" sub. Individual notes are more well defined than on the Bose. You can tell the bending of the string vs. just the low "thump".

I don't know if this is helpful to anyone and like I said, I'll test more this evening.

Has anyone else had an opportunity to compare these two systems?
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post #94 of 146 Old 04-24-2012, 01:34 PM
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Just received my sb 30 yesterday. First impressions are very good . I have it hooked up to my HD Fios motorola with a digital coax, and to a Panasonic BDT 220 bluray player with a optical cable. The cable stb Audio out is set to surround. The finish of the soundbar and sub is top notch. The sub has a black piano finish that looks awesome. I am still trying different settings and also moving the sub around the room for best base. The sound quality seems very good with a full sound. I listened to a bunch of different sound bars and most of them didn't cut it for me. I have some high end stereo equipment and my standards were probably too high. I do think I am going to quite pleased with the hk sb30. For those that want to compare it to the SR1, I think the Bose separates the channels better however I like the depth of the sound with the sb 30 better. I reserve the right to change my mind tho :-) .
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post #95 of 146 Old 04-27-2012, 12:59 PM - Thread Starter
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Should I just buy the Bose 1 sr and move on? How long do I need to wait before a review comparison btwn the Bose and HK 30?
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post #96 of 146 Old 04-27-2012, 03:55 PM
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Originally Posted by Badgers96 View Post

Should I just buy the Bose 1 sr and move on? How long do I need to wait before a review comparison btwn the Bose and HK 30?

I believe I read before that review units were only supposed to start shipping for the SB30 toward the end of April. On here, I would say unless you get someone like Davyo to review you may be waiting awhile. Thats a lot of cash to spend between two units for the average person.

It also depends on what it's worth to you. For me, the 1SR would have to be a dramatic difference for me to spend nearly twice the cash for the unit. I have heard the 1SR at a Magnolia best buy, which of course is a terrible place for comparison so I do not have much to base this on, but I can't imagine the difference being that huge in a properly set up environment to warrant the additional cost.

But, then again, I enjoy the quality sound these units provide and this isn't really a hobby for me, per say, like it is to others.
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post #97 of 146 Old 04-27-2012, 04:14 PM - Thread Starter
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Lots of good points. I had the hk 16 and was annoyed at a number of things including the volume lag, wireless interference issues, etc. I am weary of having to continually choose btwn modes for sound with the hk 30 also. The bose may be just more user friendly as well.,,
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post #98 of 146 Old 04-28-2012, 01:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Badgers96 View Post

Lots of good points. I had the hk 16 and was annoyed at a number of things including the volume lag, wireless interference issues, etc. I am weary of having to continually choose btwn modes for sound with the hk 30 also. The bose may be just more user friendly as well.,,

I am unable to comment on the 16, but I have noticed something on the 30 regarding the lag. If I try to increase the volume in increments by say, pressing the volume button one at a time, it does move pretty slow. If I, however, hold the volume buttons down then it increases and decreases very quickly. I have gotten use to this and no longer feel it is an issue on my end.

I have the sub on the left side of our room behind the couch - its about 15 feet away. I have not experienced any interference. It may still be an issue, but in my environment I haven't had any issues. The SB 30 has several wireless switch modes that you can use to achieve better connectivity.

For the sound modes, I have found that I stick to the Wave surround mode without a need to switch. I have played with the other modes and find no need to switch.
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post #99 of 146 Old 05-06-2012, 11:21 AM
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After owning this for a couple weeks total... I wanted to come back and share some additional experiences.

I mentioned before about how I thought I could get used to the lag on the volume. Indeed I have. I use a Logitech harmony 650 remote for our living room and to adjust the volume it works great as well.

I also mentioned before that I always leave the soundbar in the Harman wave mode. Well, I have noticed that at lower volumes it isn't optimal. The surround effect seems to make it so that it's hard to hear voices at lower volume during movies or tv shows. So at lower volumes I sometimes switch to stereo and it works great.

Two other features are the auto-on feature and the dolby volume. I have found that neither of these really work. The auto on is supposed to wake the soundbar from sleep when a signal gets passed to it. I have my directv box set to a 4 hour sleep mode. If I fall asleep and the box goes to sleep, the sb 30 turns off as well... but when I turn everything back on it doesnt wake back up. I have to manually turn it on. I need to contact harmon about this and see what they say.

Also, the dolby volume really just doesnt work at all. I have tried all settings and the volume always changes on commercials. Im not sure if the channel you are watching has to accept this type of technology or what, so I just turned it off and called it a day. Ill have to ask the manufacturer about this as well.
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post #100 of 146 Old 05-06-2012, 12:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GaresTaylan View Post

I believe I read before that review units were only supposed to start shipping for the SB30 toward the end of April. On here, I would say unless you get someone like Davyo to review you may be waiting awhile. Thats a lot of cash to spend between two units for the average person.

Yep,,,, Im still wanting to get the SB30 to compare against my Bose 1SR but the money thing has been preventing that from happening yet.

A/V stuff is not my only costly habit

Aside from the A/V stuff I also have to by new computers and tablets and camera's and guitars and amp's,,, its expensive to be me

Cheers
Davyo
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post #101 of 146 Old 05-07-2012, 05:58 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GaresTaylan View Post

After owning this for a couple weeks total... I wanted to come back and share some additional experiences.

I mentioned before about how I thought I could get used to the lag on the volume. Indeed I have. I use a Logitech harmony 650 remote for our living room and to adjust the volume it works great as well.

I also mentioned before that I always leave the soundbar in the Harman wave mode. Well, I have noticed that at lower volumes it isn't optimal. The surround effect seems to make it so that it's hard to hear voices at lower volume during movies or tv shows. So at lower volumes I sometimes switch to stereo and it works great.

Two other features are the auto-on feature and the dolby volume. I have found that neither of these really work. The auto on is supposed to wake the soundbar from sleep when a signal gets passed to it. I have my directv box set to a 4 hour sleep mode. If I fall asleep and the box goes to sleep, the sb 30 turns off as well... but when I turn everything back on it doesnt wake back up. I have to manually turn it on. I need to contact harmon about this and see what they say.

Also, the dolby volume really just doesnt work at all. I have tried all settings and the volume always changes on commercials. Im not sure if the channel you are watching has to accept this type of technology or what, so I just turned it off and called it a day. Ill have to ask the manufacturer about this as well.




You may have a problem. I never need to turn my sb30 off or on. As soon as I turn my stb on the soundbar comes on and just a little while after my stb is off the soundbar turns off.
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post #102 of 146 Old 05-09-2012, 03:18 AM
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Just demo'd the SB 16 at Best Buy...blown away, thinking about demoing at home. I have a family room 13 x 17 with a 9 foot opening on a 17 foot wall. Would the SB 16 be enough or do I grab the SB 30?

Thanks

Nick
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post #103 of 146 Old 05-23-2012, 03:18 AM
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Just ordered the SB30 for $650...5 days to ship . Will post thoughts when it arrives.

Nick
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post #104 of 146 Old 06-04-2012, 07:48 PM
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Originally Posted by ndrj69 View Post

Just ordered the SB30 for $650...5 days to ship . Will post thoughts when it arrives.

Nick

you are nice, wait for your feeling.
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post #105 of 146 Old 06-06-2012, 03:26 AM
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Just set it up...

First impressions,

Pros: Really good clean sound. Dialog is top notch. The surround effect is impressive, had to double take scenes from Star Trek and Transformers thinking there were speakers behind me. The woofer connects immediately, deep rich base, really nice.

Cons: The remote is slow, I was hoping for something loud enough to hurt my ears, then turn it down.

How should I have my Blu-Ray player set for the best sound. On the fence, may return and buy the Energy Power Bar Elite if the volume does not max out. Note - I don't want to really hurt my ears...just want it to be loud enough to do so.

Nick
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post #106 of 146 Old 06-06-2012, 02:57 PM
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you mean if the volume not aloud enough, the effect is not good ?

when get good effect (surround and so on), the sound is too large to hurt your ears.
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post #107 of 146 Old 06-07-2012, 05:49 AM
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OK everybody, I need to see if there are any specific settings for the audio on my BR player to improve the overall performance of the bar. I have the SB 30 connected directly to the BR player and HDMI to the TV from the BR player.

I currently have a 5.1 in the family room. This is going into the theater room. The SB 30 is in the family room. I am used to having a system that is too loud...I want something that will piss off my wife and make her ask me to turn it down. I do not want to injure my ears...but want the ability to do so. I thought after demo'ing the SB 16 at BB that the added drivers in the SB 30 would be that option. The surround effect is great at low and high volumes, the bass is wall rattling and you can feel it in your chest. The problem is with the volume at it's max it is loud, but not that loud. I can't max out my current 5.1 and I realize that the 2 are totally different so I am trying not to compare the 2. Thoughts? Other suggestions? The Bose is out of my $ range. I am posting this in the general soundbar forum as well. Thanks in advance.

Nick
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post #108 of 146 Old 06-08-2012, 10:04 PM
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Originally Posted by ndrj69 View Post

OK everybody, I need to see if there are any specific settings for the audio on my BR player to improve the overall performance of the bar. I have the SB 30 connected directly to the BR player and HDMI to the TV from the BR player.
I currently have a 5.1 in the family room. This is going into the theater room. The SB 30 is in the family room. I am used to having a system that is too loud...I want something that will piss off my wife and make her ask me to turn it down. I do not want to injure my ears...but want the ability to do so. I thought after demo'ing the SB 16 at BB that the added drivers in the SB 30 would be that option. The surround effect is great at low and high volumes, the bass is wall rattling and you can feel it in your chest. The problem is with the volume at it's max it is loud, but not that loud. I can't max out my current 5.1 and I realize that the 2 are totally different so I am trying not to compare the 2. Thoughts? Other suggestions? The Bose is out of my $ range. I am posting this in the general soundbar forum as well. Thanks in advance.
Nick

Not sure if this works for you, but I have a similar set up with you as well, with my BR player being a fat PS3, with optical cable direct from PS3 to my SB 30. What I find to make the sound output louder is when I switch my PS3 optical audio output from Linear PCM to Bitstream (Direct). The sound is quite a bit louder when it is Bitstream output, and I get better surround effect as well. If your player can do that output switch, and haven't try it yet, see if that helps.
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post #109 of 146 Old 06-09-2012, 03:49 AM
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Originally Posted by mpchi View Post

Not sure if this works for you, but I have a similar set up with you as well, with my BR player being a fat PS3, with optical cable direct from PS3 to my SB 30. What I find to make the sound output louder is when I switch my PS3 optical audio output from Linear PCM to Bitstream (Direct). The sound is quite a bit louder when it is Bitstream output, and I get better surround effect as well. If your player can do that output switch, and haven't try it yet, see if that helps.

Thanks! I will try it tonight and report back.

Nick
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post #110 of 146 Old 06-19-2012, 05:29 PM
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OK so I have tested the bar on multiple action and "regular" BR movies and all I can say is AMAZING! It is not as loud as my 5.1 but the simulated surround is priceless, the bass is booming when needed and well balanced. Music is another story...I am still playing with the few settings to get it right. Stereo mode bites, the other 2 are OK, Dolby volume control...haven't figured that out either. Called Harman Kardon (India - his name was "Phil") and got no where. Will keep at it.

Nick
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post #111 of 146 Old 06-22-2012, 10:07 AM
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Originally Posted by taichi4 View Post


Some soundbar designs deliberately go for a wide soundstage. The idea of the rear speakers is good, though, but its a matter of finding such a device where the implementation produces an overall expansive sound field.


Weirdly, due to the peculiar acoustics of my living room, the surround mode of my TV occasionally, with certain material, produces sounds "behind" me when I'm seated right in the middle. That's why I'm intrigued by the HK.

Like which ones?
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post #112 of 146 Old 06-22-2012, 01:53 PM
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I've never made a list of the movies which seem to project sounds to the side and around me. I'll make note of it when it happens from now on.

I watch a lot of HD cable, and certain movies sound restricted and all up front. But, probably according to how the movie was mixed audio-wise, some films really seem to project a floating some field. Room acoustics are interesting, and possibly some movie soundtracks contain acoustic delays.

Other people hear it too, so it's not my imagination..
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post #113 of 146 Old 06-28-2012, 06:44 PM
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Just packed it up and am shipping it back. The original shock and awe has passed. The dialogue coming out is difficult to hear. The surround is amazing but did I mention dialogue sucks? It seems to have progressively gotten worse with each movie I watch. Then there is the hissing from the drivers trying to overpower you with surround. A sad day indeed. Wanted it to work...then my wife actually asked me when it is getting exchanged for a better one. Personal/subjective opinion...HK missed the mark with this. I demo'd the Panny HTB520 and that had better dialogue and a more even sound. Back to the demo'ing again. Davyo...got any mid to low priced suggestions???

Nick
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post #114 of 146 Old 06-29-2012, 06:01 AM
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thanks for your review, that help me a lot!
Before I buy it ,I must try it completely.

And waiting for other's review. If the hissing and dialogue are the common problem.
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post #115 of 146 Old 06-29-2012, 10:42 AM
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On my experience, the dialogue is not hard to hear (very clear actually), but the relative volume on dialogue is lower than the surrounding sound effects or background music in comparison. Kind of like when you thought you have the dialogue in the right volume, any explosion come after is disproportionally louder. This happens when you have the virtual surround effect up to the fullness and has the widest sound stage setting. However, there is this Dolby Volume mode that I never tried on, and turn out it is the solution for this issue. Dolby Volume is supposed to be a mode that help level out loud commercials inbetween shows, and has Off-1-2 increments. Its not until last week that I give this mode a try (thinking I don't really need it before) and vola! It helps to bring up the dialogue volume at closer level with the overpowering sound effects and background music at setting 1. With 2 on, it makes the dialogue a lot louder, to a point it feels like I turned up the overall volume a few notches, and probably even out the surrounding sounds even more. So in my case, having Dolby Volume at 1 is enough for me, and solved my only gripe about this SB 30.

My unit doesn't have hissing sound seems like. Have it for about a month now and never noticed it.

ndrj69, maybe you'll have to give the expensive Bose 1SR a try. Seems like that is the step up from the SB 30, but cost twice as much.
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post #116 of 146 Old 06-29-2012, 11:45 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mpchi View Post

On my experience, the dialogue is not hard to hear (very clear actually), but the relative volume on dialogue is lower than the surrounding sound effects or background music in comparison. Kind of like when you thought you have the dialogue in the right volume, any explosion come after is disproportionally louder. This happens when you have the virtual surround effect up to the fullness and has the widest sound stage setting. However, there is this Dolby Volume mode that I never tried on, and turn out it is the solution for this issue. Dolby Volume is supposed to be a mode that help level out loud commercials inbetween shows, and has Off-1-2 increments. Its not until last week that I give this mode a try (thinking I don't really need it before) and vola! It helps to bring up the dialogue volume at closer level with the overpowering sound effects and background music at setting 1. With 2 on, it makes the dialogue a lot louder, to a point it feels like I turned up the overall volume a few notches, and probably even out the surrounding sounds even more. So in my case, having Dolby Volume at 1 is enough for me, and solved my only gripe about this SB 30.
My unit doesn't have hissing sound seems like. Have it for about a month now and never noticed it.
ndrj69, maybe you'll have to give the expensive Bose 1SR a try. Seems like that is the step up from the SB 30, but cost twice as much.

I really loved the sound of the HK. But more and more I got to wanting a dedicated center channel precisely to provide clear dialog. I finally ordered the BA tvee 30 which sounded nearly as good as the HK on music and has nice, clear dialog. Plus since I'm buying one refurb'd for this than $300, that means $500 left to spend on something else.
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post #117 of 146 Old 06-29-2012, 04:27 PM
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I really loved the sound of the HK. But more and more I got to wanting a dedicated center channel precisely to provide clear dialog. I finally ordered the BA tvee 30 which sounded nearly as good as the HK on music and has nice, clear dialog. Plus since I'm buying one refurb'd for this than $300, that means $500 left to spend on something else.

but with no surround.
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post #118 of 146 Old 06-30-2012, 05:23 AM
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Originally Posted by ndrj69 View Post

Just packed it up and am shipping it back. The original shock and awe has passed. The dialogue coming out is difficult to hear. The surround is amazing but did I mention dialogue sucks? It seems to have progressively gotten worse with each movie I watch. Then there is the hissing from the drivers trying to overpower you with surround. A sad day indeed. Wanted it to work...then my wife actually asked me when it is getting exchanged for a better one. Personal/subjective opinion...HK missed the mark with this. I demo'd the Panny HTB520 and that had better dialogue and a more even sound. Back to the demo'ing again. Davyo...got any mid to low priced suggestions???
Nick

I have still not picked up the HK30 to compare against my Bose 1SR,,,,, but the more I read about the HK30 and some of the negitive feedback Im wondering if it will beat my Bose bar.

The first of August Im movng into a new condo that is way more soundbar friendly than my current condo Im renting,, the soon to be moved into condo has full walls on both sides with no openings, making it perfect for a soundbar,,,, I suspect my Bose will sound even better than it does now,,, (my current condo has some openings and gaps on the side walls).

So Im going to wait until after I get moved into the new place to decide if I will try the HK30 or just keep my already AMAZING Bose,,,, if the Bose has big jump in the surround effect because of the new room layout I might not have any interest in checking out the HK30,,,,, yea,, the Bose is that good,,,,, good enough for me to perhaps stop buying other soundbars,,,,,, never thought I would say that,,,,, weird !!!!!!!!

As far as a suggestion for a mid to low priced soundbar,,,, yea,,, the Sony CT-150,,, that is still a GREAT soundbar in my opinion.

Just for fun, I hooked up my Sony CT-350 a few night's ago and was amazed by how great it still sounds compared to my Bose,,,, the Bose is way better but I gota say the Sony CT's are still very impressive.

Cheers
Davyo
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post #119 of 146 Old 06-30-2012, 12:42 PM
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It does have Dolby Digital and "virtual surround sound", although not DTS. But let's face it, surround affects from a single bar, especially one with only a few, small drivers, and often only 2 in the lower price range, is not anything like the real thing. In any case I would gladly trade quality of "surround affects" for much better front channel sound, especially with a high quality, dedicated center speaker for dialog. The larger drivers also provide a much deeper mid-range which means the sub can stick to the low end and thus integrate better. The Bluetooth streaming is not something that would have played into my decision, but is a nice feature too. All of these factors are tradeoffs that I've chosen to make. I understand others value certain qualities more or less than I do and thus would value these qualities differently from the the way I do. Of course if my budget were higher I'd be looking at other products, but as it is I think this one best suits my preferences.
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post #120 of 146 Old 07-01-2012, 03:34 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ndrj69 View Post

I think I can get my hands on a CT350...wish me luck.

Good luck on getting a CT350,,,, I will never understand why Sony discontinued them,,, they are such great soundbars,,,, but the CT150 is no slouch either,, just not "as" good at the 350.

Cheers
Davyo
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