Passive or Active Soundbar - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 8 Old 06-30-2015, 06:15 AM - Thread Starter
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Passive or Active Soundbar

Not sure what is the best option here for my setup. I have a 7.1 setup where I'm considering removing the back and side 4 speakers and then find something to replace the front 3 speakers. Currently the front left and right sit inside cabinets so i have to open them up when watching a movie, it would be nice to not have to do that at all. I like the idea of having a wireless subwoofer to put in a different spot in the room, but the wired one is OK right now I guess. There would be a better spot to put it if I had my way, The sound to me in the whole room isn't that great (mainly due to my lack of setup and configuration knowledge of the speakers and receiver), so reducing speakers I don't think would that big of an impact.

I have a multi zone setup from my Pioneer receiver (sc-1522-k) plus another Onkyo to power a 3rd and 4th zone. I use an iRule system to be able to control everything since I like to have as few remotes as possible. I'd like to continue to use the receiver based on that setup so I can continue to have one or more zones playing the same music for example.

So, active or passive? I'd like to get the best sound in the room as possible to still get close to a 5.1 or 7.1 experience.

I assume on my receiver I could still make changes to how inputs and outputs work to get the theater zone to work right with an active soudbar? Or maybe no changes at all if sounds it always going through hdmi?

And, how do you control the volume on a active unit? You have to use a separate remote? I assume with my iRule setup I can still get that to work too and get rid of the remote? My Samsung 60" does have room under it to put a soundbar, so that should not be an issue.

Just not sure what benefit you get from from the active unit, although you do get some new bluetooth features and the wireless sub.

Thoughts? I'd like to see if I could do something for $500-600 or less.

Attached you can see how the setup looks.
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post #2 of 8 Old 06-30-2015, 12:09 PM
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A sound bar might be a good solution for you, speakers in cabinets are not great for sound quality. You could replace your front 3 with a passive sound bar and have decent quality. You would still keep your surrounds and back speakers. If you want to get rid of the surround and back speakers than an active sound bar would be better but don't expect as good surround effects with it.


Volume on an active unit depends on the unit. Most have a remote but some can learn your TVs volume controls so you don't have to add another remote.
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post #3 of 8 Old 07-02-2015, 02:05 PM
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If you want control with your receiver, your only choice would be a passive sound bar. Your choices are fewer.


It is almost impossible to integrate an active soundbar with existing passive speakers.


If you are interested in an all active speaker system there are other options out there that could simplify your life. However, Definitive Technology and others offer passive soundbars that could probably do the job you are looking for and integrate with the proper balance with your existing system. I would research and find an audio dealer willing to let you take home and try what you are interested in prior to finalizing a purchase (I am sure you would need to place the purchase on a credit card prior to leaving the store with an item).

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post #4 of 8 Old 07-12-2015, 07:44 AM
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Passive...

Great look and great sound!!!
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Denon X4000, SC-91, VSX-51,VSX-81 Pioneer Elites and Denon 1611
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post #5 of 8 Old 07-13-2015, 06:30 AM
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In your case, I would definitely go with a passive soundbar. The sound quality with one combined with pretty much ANY receiver will blow away most active bars out there. In my experience, a passive soundbar is the best way to get a passable soundstage for a multi-channel system like yours. I've had 3 of my own active soundbars of various brands as temporary setups for when I was working on the road, and while they were better than tv speakers, they still kind of sucked when compared to any decent AVR setup. Don't get me wrong, there are actually some good active bars out there, but they are $$$ and likely won't integrate with your surround as far as I'm aware.
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post #6 of 8 Old 07-14-2015, 07:28 AM
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Hi. I just joined forum and don't know if I should be on this thread but I wonder if anybody can help. I have a Samsung HW F450 sound bar and it keeps turning itself back on when I switch it off. Any ideas?
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post #7 of 8 Old 07-16-2015, 12:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by davey 475 View Post
Hi. I just joined forum and don't know if I should be on this thread but I wonder if anybody can help. I have a Samsung HW F450 sound bar and it keeps turning itself back on when I switch it off. Any ideas?
You should probably not have posted in someone else's thread. It sounds like you have your soundbar connected to your TV via HDMI possibly to the ARC port and anytime you switch your TV on it will automatically turn on your soundbar.


If not that, no clue.

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post #8 of 8 Old 07-17-2015, 03:57 AM - Thread Starter
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I think I'll go with a passive unit. And, I like the idea of just going to a local dealer here to see what my options are. There don't seem to be too many options online for decent passive units.
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