AVS Forum banner

41 - 59 of 59 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,047 Posts
So I bought Samsung MS650 and now testing today. It does seem to be a pretty decent one. I like the sound of it. There's no sub, so that's the limitation but it does give decent bass when needed. I just dont have a good way to make a judgement on sound quality comparison between Klipsch RSB11 and this one. Any thoughts on that?

Connection was a breeze, ARC worked without a hassle, bluetooth connection is really nice and strong unlike Klipsch one that dropped beyond 5ft. The wifi connectivity of phone and soundbar was not really mind blowing. I tried playing amazon music, and it was getting stuck in middle and buffering issue. I have 5ghz connection with Fios 1Gbps input to Linksys router, so wifi signal is pretty strong in this area.

Overall it saves me ~$50 from Klipsch but no Sub. It's a mix feeling : )
There is a separate Samsung subwoofwer that can be added with the MS650 soundbar, model SWA-W700. It is sometimes on sale for $299. Not the most affordable option and some reviews say there are pairing problems getting it to connect wirelessly with the soundbar.

As for the Klipsch soundbars, most have a learning feature that allow for use of the same TV brand remote, including Samsung to control volume. And the optical connection works very good if the ARC or Bluetooth are problematic.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
374 Posts
Discussion Starter #43
Thanks. I landed up buying the Samsung HW-K850 at price of $389 as I mentioned above. Since I have the Samsung TV, the connection was super easy, and so far I am loving the sound. I have already returned the Klipsch RSB-11 and MS650 will be going back soon.


There is a separate Samsung subwoofwer that can be added with the MS650 soundbar, model SWA-W700. It is sometimes on sale for $299. Not the most affordable option and some reviews say there are pairing problems getting it to connect wirelessly with the soundbar.

As for the Klipsch soundbars, most have a learning feature that allow for use of the same TV brand remote, including Samsung to control volume. And the optical connection works very good if the ARC or Bluetooth are problematic.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
374 Posts
Discussion Starter #44
I guess you got your answer already :)

For cosmetic reasons, your choice is understandable. My only suggestion to consider will be, if you plan to upgrade your TV in coming months to a bigger size then you may want to consider this. I have a 65" Samsung wall mounted above the fire place, and soundbar sits just under the TV and over the mantle. I still have inches left for the width of the TV. Since both are of the same company, connection was a breeze. And in terms of paying $150 more then it's very subjective. If you dont care about Atmos then may it's not worth it and I am sure 550 is equally enjoyable.

I just bought the Samsung HW-M550, but now see the deal you are talking about. Is it worth it for the extra $150? (should my soundbar cost more than my TV?!?!)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
263 Posts
I guess you got your answer already :)

For cosmetic reasons, your choice is understandable. My only suggestion to consider will be, if you plan to upgrade your TV in coming months to a bigger size then you may want to consider this. I have a 65" Samsung wall mounted above the fire place, and soundbar sits just under the TV and over the mantle. I still have inches left for the width of the TV. Since both are of the same company, connection was a breeze. And in terms of paying $150 more then it's very subjective. If you dont care about Atmos then may it's not worth it and I am sure 550 is equally enjoyable.
Thanks. I would love to get a bigger TV, but that's not happening in the near future. I think the 850 would be too big for the current set up so I'll try the 550 for now. (but this deal is hard to pass up!!)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
14 Posts
I just ordered it last night from JBL. They have a great deal going on right now. Total cost for the JBL 5.1 was $509.95 with free 2 day express shipping and a 30 day no questions ask return policy with return shipping paid by JBL. Can't afford not to try it. I won't be able to test it out until this weekend though. I hoping the mids are better sounding on this bar. I really liked the JBL 3.1 besides the mids being so bad. Looking at this soundbar, it's 5 inches longer and a 1/2 inch wider then the 3.1 bar and it has a little more power.

I sure hope i can use the 5.1 soundbar as a 3.1 if i choose to and not use the rear speakers if i don't want to? right now there is alot of unknowns about this soundbar. I think i will ask some questions on crutchfield and JBL's web site.

i will let you know once i set it up and see how it performs.
I think you'll really like the JBL 5.1!
I have it now and also had the LG SJ9 Atmos soundbar, which I returned to keep the JBL.
For the money, you really can't beat the 5.1 JBL. The sub is incredible and the additional rear surrounds completes the package.

I posted in another thread about my experience and mentioned the same deal you took advantage of.
For $509.95, in my opinion, this is the best option out there.

Please be sure to share your experience!

Congrats!
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
716 Posts
I think you'll really like the JBL 5.1!
I have it now and also had the LG SJ9 Atmos soundbar, which I returned to keep the JBL.
For the money, you really can't beat the 5.1 JBL. The sub is incredible and the additional rear surrounds completes the package.

I posted in another thread about my experience and mentioned the same deal you took advantage of.
For $509.95, in my opinion, this is the best option out there.

Please be sure to share your experience! Congrats!
Hi DrakeNathan, I'm looking at soundbar options for a fam member and just curious where it's selling for $509, as amazon & crutchfield both have it at $559. Thanks.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
14 Posts
Hi DrakeNathan, I'm looking at soundbar options for a fam member and just curious where it's selling for $509, as amazon & crutchfield both have it at $559. Thanks.
Order directly from JBL. It is on sale now for $559.95.
BEFORE you order, sign-up for their email list directly from the site.
You should get an email with a promo code for $50 off your first purchase of $500 or more.
Apply the code and your price comes down to $509.95.
No tax and free shipping and returns!

Good luck!
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
716 Posts
Order directly from JBL. It is on sale now for $559.95.
BEFORE you order, sign-up for their email list directly from the site.
You should get an email with a promo code for $50 off your first purchase of $500 or more.
Apply the code and your price comes down to $509.95.
No tax and free shipping and returns! Good luck!
Oh right! Now I recall you mentioning that in earlier post. Thanks for reminder !=)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
14 Posts
Oh right! Now I recall you mentioning that in earlier post. Thanks for reminder !=)
For what it's worth, here is a counterpoint to most other peoples' JBL experience: I bought the 5.1 bar right before Christmas, and by New Year's Eve it had been returned. I have a Martin Logan Vision bar which sounds great, but I figured I would try something that had HDMI, 4k, bluetooth, etc. since the ML is an older model without those features. I don't necessarily believe online reviews, since you don't know how accurate they are, but other than 1 other person I am the only one that seems to HATE the sound coming out of it. I'm not exaggerating, I HATED the sound so much I was sure I had connected it wrong. How could HDMI coming from a 4k bluray player sound this bad? I tried optical, HDMI, all the different sound modes (movie, sports, etc.) - to me it was AWFUL. As in, not really that much better than my LG TV speakers. Yes, the subwoofer is large and ridiculous - but if you turn the bass down, what you're left with is tiny, 2" speakers that to me sounded very tinny and hollow. Like old-fashioned PC speakers. I understand this is my problem because everybody else seems to love it, but I HATED HATED HATED it. I couldn't pack it up fast enough. Once I put my ML back into play, I thought, now THIS sounds good.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
716 Posts
For what it's worth, here is a counterpoint to most other peoples' JBL experience: I bought the 5.1 bar right before Christmas, and by New Year's Eve it had been returned. I have a Martin Logan Vision bar which sounds great, but I figured I would try something that had HDMI, 4k, bluetooth, etc. since the ML is an older model without those features. I don't necessarily believe online reviews, since you don't know how accurate they are, but other than 1 other person I am the only one that seems to HATE the sound coming out of it. I'm not exaggerating, I HATED the sound so much I was sure I had connected it wrong. How could HDMI coming from a 4k bluray player sound this bad? I tried optical, HDMI, all the different sound modes (movie, sports, etc.) - to me it was AWFUL. As in, not really that much better than my LG TV speakers. Yes, the subwoofer is large and ridiculous - but if you turn the bass down, what you're left with is tiny, 2" speakers that to me sounded very tinny and hollow. Like old-fashioned PC speakers. I understand this is my problem because everybody else seems to love it, but I HATED HATED HATED it. I couldn't pack it up fast enough. Once I put my ML back into play, I thought, now THIS sounds good.
Hmm, interesting. Thanks very much for your experience
review. Sorry to read about that, but good to know.

We've been super happy with our Sony HT-NT5 soundbar, since setting it up 7 weeks ago, except for a couple days last week---of slow boot-up & un-synced/delayed sound---after we added the SRS-ZR5 wireless surrounds. But got the sync issue worked-out, accidentally I guess.
The Hi-Res capable sound of the HT-NT5, and now with great surround sound... is fabulous to us and really enjoyable. I wouldn't hesitate buying another HT-NT5, but interested in learning about others.

Although being a soundbar...I guess I should say it's really great, so far. As I'm getting the impression, after reading several of these threads, that soundbars are like Forrest Gump's box of chocolates . . . You never know what you're gonna get !
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
736 Posts
For what it's worth, here is a counterpoint to most other peoples' JBL experience: I bought the 5.1 bar right before Christmas, and by New Year's Eve it had been returned. I have a Martin Logan Vision bar which sounds great, but I figured I would try something that had HDMI, 4k, bluetooth, etc. since the ML is an older model without those features. I don't necessarily believe online reviews, since you don't know how accurate they are, but other than 1 other person I am the only one that seems to HATE the sound coming out of it. I'm not exaggerating, I HATED the sound so much I was sure I had connected it wrong. How could HDMI coming from a 4k bluray player sound this bad? I tried optical, HDMI, all the different sound modes (movie, sports, etc.) - to me it was AWFUL. As in, not really that much better than my LG TV speakers. Yes, the subwoofer is large and ridiculous - but if you turn the bass down, what you're left with is tiny, 2" speakers that to me sounded very tinny and hollow. Like old-fashioned PC speakers. I understand this is my problem because everybody else seems to love it, but I HATED HATED HATED it. I couldn't pack it up fast enough. Once I put my ML back into play, I thought, now THIS sounds good.
This is why i always purchase and try speakers or in this case soundbars for myself. There are to many variables like room set up, a persons hearing, a person ability to connect and set up properly and there's always the possibility that someone gets a defective unit and is not aware of it. What sounds good to one person may sound terrible to another. You can read all the reviews you want and take as much informive information you can get from them but taking someones opinion on how good or bad it sounds is not one of them.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,571 Posts
Flexmavs,

I agree with you on the ML sound bar. It is one of the best sounding sound bars. Now I haven't heard the JBL so I can't give an opinion on it. But, I have education and background in acoustics and have said many times the quality and size of speakers is going to make a bigger difference in sound quality than the difference in audio formats. There is just a certain limitation of speaker drivers that haven't been overcome. Maybe some new driver technology will come out in the future but with todays' speakers there are limitations of the drivers. When you double the driver size you move 4 times more air, technically more because you can have greater excursion as well. This comes into play with being able to go deeper, louder and with less distortion. When we are talking about small drivers like a 2" to a 4" it affects the midrange and upper bass above the crossover to the sub.

Many get caught up in the specs and don't listen to the sound. For a lot of people Dolby Digital is the source and it doesn't matter if it comes from HDMI, ARC or optical that doesn't change the soud quality. The big notable exception is Bluray. Now if you use the DD or DTS track from a blu-ray and not the lossless version there will not be a tremendous difference in sound quality because these DD/DTS tracks are done with the least amount of compression, unlike streaming or cable/sat which uses much greater compression. If you search CD vs. MP3 you will find many examples and if the MP3 is at 320kbs many will have trouble telling the difference from the lossless CD version. Blu-ray at the least amount of compression is going to be higher quality than CD because it is 24 bit and not 16 bit like CD. Try for yourself.
https://www.npr.org/sections/therecord/2015/06/02/411473508/how-well-can-you-hear-audio-quality

I guarantee you the difference in speaker quality will be a bigger diference than the difference between lossless and the least amount of compression. And like I said for the average person the most common sources will use Dolby Digital so there will be no difference in the sound no matter which interface you choose. Unfortunately discs are just about dead for the average person. No amount of DSP/EQ can makeup for the limitation of small drivers.

Everyone has their own priorities and sometimes there is a feature one may want and sacrifice some sound quality for it. A good example might be surround speakers or surround/Atmos effect. Maybe they want more bass and will go for the system with the bigger, better sub. That's all personal preference.

Rkskydancer, I enjoy reading your reviews but none of your conclusions have surprised me. I suggest everyone do the same and demo speakers or sound bars in their room if possible.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
14 Posts
All I know is if I had just listened to you instead of all the “rave reviews” of the JBL, I wouldn’t have had to drag the FIFTY POUND box into my house, hook it all up, realize I hated it, and then have to pack it all up and drag it back to the UPS store (the box was huge and awkward and heavy and the woman says to me “just put it up here on the scale” LOL). I just don’t understand what everyone else is hearing. To me it didn’t sound that much better than the TV speakers. Yes the bass is loud; so what? I’m not 16 anymore and I want something that actually sounds better than “loud” for $600. The sound wasn’t even that clear to me. It sounded muddled and tinny and weak. I guess my middle-aged ears are shot because I just don’t get it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,571 Posts
flexemavs,

We are being a little unfair here. We are comparing a $1700 sound bar that does not come with a sub at that price to an under $600 sound bar with a sub. It should sound better! Although it won't have as much bass without a sub. I know many people got the ML bar in this price range when their new version came out and it only added DTS Play-Fi. So basically the same sound quality as the new one. If someone can still find the older ML sound bar at that discounted price they should grab it, nothing in this price range will touch it for sound quality. And if you want more bass you can always add a sub to it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
14 Posts
But that's the thing: I got my ML Vision soundbar 2 Christmases ago - for $599 at Best Buy! And I've had it hooked up both with and without a subwoofer, it sounds good both ways. Now it still suffers from the same problems all soundbars have, as in it really sounds best if you're 2 feet away from it LOL. But it does sound better than the old small Boston Acoustics/Sony receiver setup I had.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
14 Posts
flexemavs,

We are being a little unfair here. We are comparing a $1700 sound bar that does not come with a sub at that price to an under $600 sound bar with a sub. It should sound better! Although it won't have as much bass without a sub. I know many people got the ML bar in this price range when their new version came out and it only added DTS Play-Fi. So basically the same sound quality as the new one. If someone can still find the older ML sound bar at that discounted price they should grab it, nothing in this price range will touch it for sound quality. And if you want more bass you can always add a sub to it.
I agree with Ellebob.
I am one of the folks out here that is praising the JBL 5.1 for what it is - a GREAT value for the sale price with discounts at $509.95.

Are there better systems out there?
Most definitely.

But for me, it came down to the following key points - keep in mind I am using for movies/TV only:

4K connectivity - check
Multiple HDMI - check - 3+1
Option for rear surrounds- check
Added bonus of wireless rear surrounds - check
An additional point on the wireless rears - to me, this was a great extra - I wanted to get away from a wired system, otherwise I would have gone a completely different route and not even looked at soundbars.
Great power output - check - over 510W
Sound sources - Dolby® Digital, Dolby Pro Logic II and DTS - check

Again, does it do EVERYTHING perfect and have all sources/options (ATMOS, virtual, etc.), no. But for the price and the no- questions-asked 30 day review policy, I think it is a fantastic contender for the money.

I hope others share similar experiences and not faulting anyone who doesn't like the JBL.
At the end of the day, it comes down to what you want to spend, what your requirements are and what your ears tell you.

Cheers!
 
41 - 59 of 59 Posts
Top