Samsung HW-Q90N 7.1.4 Soundbar Review - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 40 Old 07-22-2019, 09:14 AM - Thread Starter
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Samsung HW-Q90N 7.1.4 Soundbar Review

The evolution of the premium soundbar continues at a frenzied pace. Witness the Samsung HW-Q90R, which is able to deliver 7.1.4-channel 3D immersive sound in a package that installs in minutes and features both a wireless subwoofer and wireless surrounds.

Click here to read the review.

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Last edited by imagic; 07-23-2019 at 04:28 AM.
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post #2 of 40 Old 07-23-2019, 06:39 AM
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I'm going to hold out for the Oontz 16 channel ultra surround bluetooth speaker you place on the floor behind the tv.

In case you didn't get the sarcasm... soundbars are ridiculous especially if used for any 3D audio format. It's shameful that TV manufacturers decided to bury the speaker behind the TV instead of front bottom where it makes the most sense but consumers don't see the marketing strategy here and buy them anyways because they have to.
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post #3 of 40 Old 07-23-2019, 07:30 AM
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I still don't believe anyone that says a sounder Atmos setup is enveloping. Its still a soundbar. Its still a gimmick. Its not real Atmos by a long shot. Its a glorified gimmick. Better than tv speakers but id laugh at anyone that spend 1300$ on this.
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post #4 of 40 Old 07-23-2019, 07:41 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by x-evil-x View Post
I still don't believe anyone that says a sounder Atmos setup is enveloping. Its still a soundbar. Its still a gimmick. Its not real Atmos by a long shot. Its a glorified gimmick. Better than tv speakers but id laugh at anyone that spend 1300$ on this.
OK, fine. It does work, but that's totally separate from what you do or do not believe.

There absolutely is a place for systems like this, it's just not in dedicated rooms in McMansions where people want 120 dB 16 Hz etc.

If you live in the downtown of a city, in a high rise, then this system makes a ton of sense, actually.
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post #5 of 40 Old 07-23-2019, 07:43 AM
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Originally Posted by imagic View Post
OK, fine. It does work, but that's totally separate from what you do or do not believe.

There absolutely is a place for systems like this, it's just not in dedicated rooms in McMansions where people want 120 dB 16 Hz etc.

If you live in the downtown of a city, in a high rise, then this system makes a ton of sense, actually.
I live in one of those and I have a studio with a 5.2.4 setup and in the backroom a 5.1 setup(all within one large space). but hey I like discrete speakers where they should be :P
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post #6 of 40 Old 07-23-2019, 07:50 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by x-evil-x View Post
I live in one of those and I have a studio with a 5.2.4 setup and in the backroom a 5.1 setup(all within one large space). But hey I like discrete speakers where they should be :P
Well, if its a priority then you'll "pay" for the real estate to do that, which can then easily become the most expensive part of the system, depending on where you live.

It's a matter of priorities, for sure.

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post #7 of 40 Old 07-23-2019, 09:05 AM
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I'm surprised this doesn't include eARC. Or does that not really matter? Can we hear the difference with uncompressed 5.1/7.1/Atmos/higher bandwidth audio on a soundbar anyways....?
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post #8 of 40 Old 07-23-2019, 09:14 AM
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First of all, I think this solution (at least potentially) and a full blown home theater are perfectly compatible. We use our dedicated theater mostly for music, movies and, during college football season, sports.

Our family room 75" TV is used for all kinds of things, like other sports, and some of the Amazon/Netflix TV series, live TV as well as some of the entertainment shows which might benefit from "surround" (e.g. America's Got Talent). While I would love to have already installed a surround system, the cost to get wires to surrounds would be huge (e.g. ceiling joists run in the wrong direction). If this system can get me a surround system (fake or otherwise) that would at least give me more "immersion' than what I already have, it is worth considering.

Some questions:

Any kind of room correction? My current Sonos system, including a sub, provides such and is very helpful.

Any adjustments to delays of the "surround" speakers? I assume there needs to be power for the surrounds to work?
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post #9 of 40 Old 07-23-2019, 09:31 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by peekytoe View Post
I'm surprised this doesn't include eARC. Or does that not really matter? Can we hear the difference with uncompressed 5.1/7.1/Atmos/higher bandwidth audio on a soundbar anyways....?
I think a firmware update added eARC.
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post #10 of 40 Old 07-23-2019, 09:33 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by audioguy View Post
First of all, I think this solution (at least potentially) and a full blown home theater are perfectly compatible. We use our dedicated theater mostly for music, movies and, during college football season, sports.

Our family room 75" TV is used for all kinds of things, like other sports, and some of the Amazon/Netflix TV series, live TV as well as some of the entertainment shows which might benefit from "surround" (e.g. America's Got Talent). While I would love to have already installed a surround system, the cost to get wires to surrounds would be huge (e.g. ceiling joists run in the wrong direction). If this system can get me a surround system (fake or otherwise) that would at least give me more "immersion' than what I already have, it is worth considering.

Some questions:

Any kind of room correction? My current Sonos system, including a sub, provides such and is very helpful.

Any adjustments to delays of the "surround" speakers? I assume there needs to be power for the surrounds to work?
No room correction but there is a hidden menu that lets you adjust EQ. This system relies on being tuned in a way that should work well with residential living room type spaces. YMMV, obviously.

The surrounds do need to be plugged in. There is not adjustment for individual speaker delay, just a global adjustment to sync audio to the TV.

There are obviously going to be rooms where this simplified approach works better than others. The main idea, I gather, is that the soundbar is pre-tuned for a "typical" installation, which happened to work well with my living room.
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post #11 of 40 Old 07-23-2019, 09:34 AM - Thread Starter
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I think a firmware update added eARC.
I was not able to test it before sending it back.

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post #12 of 40 Old 07-23-2019, 12:58 PM
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Originally Posted by imagic View Post
Well, if its a priority then you'll "pay" for the real estate to do that, which can then easily become the most expensive part of the system, depending on where you live.

It's a matter of priorities, for sure.
I have a friend that just got an 82Q60 and this would be perfect for how his TV and room is situated. Every room cannot accommodate a full on Atmos surround setup.

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post #13 of 40 Old 07-23-2019, 03:10 PM
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I really want this concept to work. This, for our new home, would be perfect where wiring and speaker placement would be an issue. It's a big room with cathedral ceilings and I would much rather have something like this than clogging up my space with a receiver and wiring back and forth for the tv, source and speakers. This is so simple and if the surround is anywhere close to what I'm getting with my current setup, I'm in!!! I need more reviews!!!
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post #14 of 40 Old 07-23-2019, 04:08 PM
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Mark thanks for the prompt great review of the Q90. I went from the k950 which worked well for me, and then jumped to the N950 for its additional features which I waited for your highly anticipated review of. I am still in a state of shock of Samsung releasing another high end soundbar within 9 months of the N950 with no promise of adding additional new features to it. My only issue with the N950 is it’s quite uncontrollable base. Some complain of no base the only issue I have is too much. I have placed it all around the room base crawl etc. any suggestions would help. Sorry for the derail. But in most cases what you have stated in your Q90 review I can totally relate to on my N950. Retiring and downsizing to a much smaller environment I found the Samsung k950 & N950 much more related to a smaller separates sound system then a Soundbar by the way someone did mention in one of the threads earc was added in the last firmware but no one was able to test it out yet.

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post #15 of 40 Old 07-23-2019, 06:37 PM
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Good article and good topic.

For me, a sound bar solution must include compatibility with a subwoofer of my choosing. But that is just for me. I do expect a growing level of expertise in room correction capability by sound bar manufacturers in reproducing all kinds of audio experiences, perhaps in line with future 5G VR capability down the road a ways.

In any case, good review -- I bet it sounded really great in person!

let's face it, wires and separates, depsite a time honered tradition...will simply be a non-essential PITA as the years go by.

A short throw projector, a room correcting soundbar,, and a sub---done and awesome! ( see y'all in 2025 :-))
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post #16 of 40 Old 07-24-2019, 08:07 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by peekytoe View Post
I'm surprised this doesn't include eARC. Or does that not really matter? Can we hear the difference with uncompressed 5.1/7.1/Atmos/higher bandwidth audio on a soundbar anyways....?
It has eARC. I have the soundbar in my living room hooked up to a 65in LG C9 Oled using eARC. The soundbar really does sound great. Not as good as my Paradigm speaker setup in my basement home theatre but I enjoy watching movies and TV shows I've tested with it. I have a Panasonic UB900 player hooked to the tv and does a fantastic job passing uncompressed True HD, DTS HD, ATMOS and DTS X sound to the soundbar. I also have an Apple 4ktv hooked up as well through eARC even though the ATMOS is compressed it does sound good.

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post #17 of 40 Old 07-24-2019, 08:26 AM
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So the lg 9 series have earc? Are there any Samsung tv!s earc capable yet? Sorry to deflect from the Q90 just looking for what tv!s it is comparable with.

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post #18 of 40 Old 07-24-2019, 08:35 AM
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Why do reviews and spec sheets go through such great lengths to hide the number of HDMI ports. How many does it have?

This has been the thing that has held be back completely from ever considering a sound bar. They often have at most 2 HDMI input ports and that is simply unacceptable.

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Originally Posted by william06 View Post
So the lg 9 series have earc? Are there any Samsung tv!s earc capable yet? Sorry to deflect from the Q90 just looking for what tv!s it is comparable with.
Yes the LG 9 series have eARC although not sure if the B9 has it. Not sure if Samsung tvs have it either.
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post #20 of 40 Old 07-24-2019, 09:08 AM
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How are the surround speakers powered? Also, I have always been told wireless surround speakers will have latency issues. How does this system handle that? Thanks!

Steve
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post #21 of 40 Old 07-24-2019, 09:31 AM
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Why do reviews and spec sheets go through such great lengths to hide the number of HDMI ports. How many does it have?

This has been the thing that has held be back completely from ever considering a sound bar. They often have at most 2 HDMI input ports and that is simply unacceptable.
2 inputs
1 output

http://downloadcenter.samsung.com/co...FRA_190326.pdf
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post #22 of 40 Old 07-24-2019, 09:44 AM
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Does this subwoofer get as low or lower than the w700 (27hz)?
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post #23 of 40 Old 07-24-2019, 09:55 AM
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How are the surround speakers powered? Also, I have always been told wireless surround speakers will have latency issues. How does this system handle that? Thanks!

Steve
AC power cable powers the surround speakers. I haven't noticed any delays with them. Heard there were problems before the 1008 firmware update but I didn't have the soundbar before that update.
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post #24 of 40 Old 07-24-2019, 09:58 AM
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Does this subwoofer get as low or lower than the w700 (27hz)?
No I don't think it does. I had the Samsung ms750 Sound+ soundbar before replacing it with this one. I had the w700 sub and rear speaker kit as well. I think the w700 sub is better that the Q90r one. The w700 is 10in and the Q90r one is 8in. I wish you could use the w700 sub with the Q90r.
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post #25 of 40 Old 07-24-2019, 10:15 AM
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No I don't think it does. I had the Samsung ms750 Sound+ soundbar before replacing it with this one. I had the w700 sub and rear speaker kit as well. I think the w700 sub is better that the Q90r one. The w700 is 10in and the Q90r one is 8in. I wish you could use the w700 sub with the Q90r.


Yeah I just purchased an LG C9. The MS750 what I have now. With the Samsung KS800D the MS750 sounded OK at best, but I’m with the LG C9, it sounds leaps and bounds better and doesn’t suffer the sleep issue. I’m not sure what I want to do. I don’t want to give up that 10” subwoofer, but for .4 Atmos, I may have to consider the Q90r.
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post #26 of 40 Old 07-24-2019, 12:12 PM
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Originally Posted by x-evil-x View Post
I still don't believe anyone that says a sounder Atmos setup is enveloping. Its still a soundbar. Its still a gimmick. Its not real Atmos by a long shot. Its a glorified gimmick. Better than tv speakers but id laugh at anyone that spend 1300$ on this.
Quote:
Originally Posted by x-evil-x View Post
I still don't believe anyone that says a sounder Atmos setup is enveloping. Its still a soundbar. Its still a gimmick. Its not real Atmos by a long shot. Its a glorified gimmick. Better than tv speakers but id laugh at anyone that spend 1300$ on this.








So what about those who have the tradition 5.1 set up with the 4' tall 3 way speakers with 12" subs and a theater cabinet to hold my mid 1990 Sony receiver (that had up to prologic) and a 24" Sony Trinitron tv and took up %20 of the bedroom sticking out almost 3" and having large gauge speaker wire all the floor or ceiling or running from front of the bedroom to the back for the rear surrounds and subs, center, L&R huge towers. Only to get rid of ALL of that but getting a Samsung 75" flat panel that now sticks out at 6" including the sound bar and now having ZEREO wires for the rears and sub and the technology now hitting some very nice surround sound filling up the room with today latest DD or ATMOS encoded film?

Mine was $1,499 but of course I work the system and have hookups at Magnolia and bought it for just under 1K with tax.

These 7.1.4 little guys pack a HUGE punch in all aspects of audio as far as sound quality, level, depth, immersion and the bass is mind blowing for what it is. The moment these sound bars came to the market over 10+ years ago I thought they were a joke, a gimmick or for those who just don't know any better and fall for hype. Back then I am sure they were not up to par. But in the last few years, they have really turned the tables. I researched for a few months going to store to store with different movies, check out Sony, Klipsch, Bose, Vizio SONOS (although I feel SONOS would've been way better, but almost double the cost with the full set up, which didn't justify the price difference).



Now as far as the ATMOS, I don't feel it or notice it compared to a real atmos set up, it does fill the room, but not the way one would think or the way it really should, IMHO I don't even feel towers that have the additional top facing speakers for ATMOS even do the job. Sound is real and has to come from a speaker placed properly. Real ATMOS is from a speaker that is above you facing down in addition to the side and rear surrounds. I already have a 9.3.4 ATMOS theater

I already have a custom built 9.3.4 ATMOS theater and these sound bars DO NOT come ANYWHERE close to what it does. But for the price the Samsung does an AMAZING job. To get the same sound for what mine does, I would have to buy a receiver and 8 speakers with wires running all over the place and would cost double if not triple something that is definitely better, not just a little better. These little sound bars (well they are not really little and the rear speakers have some serious weight and build quality to them) do perform extremely well for what they are and are equivalent to book shelf speakers
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post #27 of 40 Old 07-24-2019, 12:18 PM
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[QUOTE=cydeweyz;58335602]Yeah I just purchased an LG C9. The MS750 what I have now. With the Samsung KS800D the MS750 sounded OK at best, but I’m with the LG C9, it sounds leaps and bounds better and doesn’t suffer the sleep issue. I’m not sure what I want to do. I don’t want to give up that 10” subwoofer, but for .4 Atmos, I may have to consider the Q90r.[/Q

Yeah I thought the ms750 sounded much better with the C9 over the Vizio p 65c1 I had and I enjoyed the ms750. I would say the Q90r is a step up. The whole sound seems fuller and punchier than the ms750. The bass is still good but I do think the m700 sub was better. Not sure why Samsung decided to go backwards on the sub.

Being able to use eARC has been great as it is so much easier to just connect a single hdmi cable and let the tv pass all the uncompressed audio. I had issues plugging when plugging in multiple hdmi cables on the ms750.
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post #28 of 40 Old 07-24-2019, 12:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by x-evil-x View Post
I still don't believe anyone that says a sounder Atmos setup is enveloping. Its still a soundbar. Its still a gimmick. Its not real Atmos by a long shot. Its a glorified gimmick. Better than tv speakers but id laugh at anyone that spend 1300$ on this.
While your laughing and ridiculing those of us who spend this ridiculous amount of money on these items Please at least call them what they are , soundbars not sounders. Totally loving and enjoying the very enveloping sound from mine.
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post #29 of 40 Old 07-24-2019, 04:15 PM
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Can the HDMI ports pass thru Dolby Vision?
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post #30 of 40 Old 07-25-2019, 08:21 AM
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As much as I love my dedicated room (converted bedroom), the wife would love to free up that space. The ability to have something clean (no AVR, no wires, simple control) like this in the living room is worth the extra cost. Wireless and soundbars seem to make leaps year-over-year.
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