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The initially sound bar I ever before encountered was, wait for it, a speaker that had actually been jury rigged to output the sound from a Zenith 19-inch TV. As you can imagine, the concept of speakers outplacing the audio from your TV, be it a television picture or a movie, has enhanced because then — matured even. The advent of the level panel screen being placed on a wall demanded the audio equivalent the panel’s unobtrusive appearance. This is why stand-alone speakers, while still a sensible method for a house theater, are frequently looked askance at once there’s a wall surface mounted level panel TV.

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So bring in the sound bars rather. At its a lot of standard, you have actually a collection of speakers inside a cabinet that deserve to be directed towards the viewer. Of course that’s choose saying the Queen Mary floats on the water the same as a speedboat: improvements in the audio high quality, the physical building and construction and the modern technology managing the audio output has actually undertaken transforms and enhancements that belie a sound bar’s fairly tiny dimension in comparichild to stand-alone speakers.

So allows aim our ears at the harman kardon SB 16 2.1-channel energetic sound bar speaker mechanism. Now your $689 retail buys you even more than just the sound bar in what is one honking substantial box (I’ve viewed 32-inch TV boxes that were smaller): a 100 watt subwoofer (also black) comes along for the ride. Wbelow to location the sub is not an problem, considering that the bass being created is omnidirectional, yet you‘ll the majority of most likely desire it out of the method in an unobtrusive edge or maybe behind the couch (harmale says relocating it ameans from the wall, so plan on some dust bunnies settling behind it). The SB 16’s powered sub has actually a 10-inch forward firing driver (magnetically shielded) and requires an AC socket in order to obtain its juice, yet don’t concern about having actually to run a wire from it to the sound bar. Since it’s wiremuch less. Nopoint to put up either bereason it “knows” to affix to the sound bar and does it for you as lengthy as you’re less than 50 feet away and have actually set the code on the back of the sub and also sound bar to the very same number (complete of 4 to select from).

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What you DO have to decide on, but, is the volume to set the sub at — exploring while listening to your usual kinds of audio (be they TV or movies) will determine this to your satisfaction. Finally there’s a phase control switch for optimizing the sub’s performance versus the SB 16’s sound bar. Use of the switch keeps both “in phase” through the various other so that each’s audio isn’t leading to interference patterns via the various other. I found, as harman listed in the instruction manual that I downloaded from their webwebsite, that keeping this setting at “O” worked fine. Aobtain, feel cost-free to experiment.

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So to test the harguy kardon SB 16, all I’m doing is placing the sound bar in front of and also up versus my 60-inch on its TV stand also, via the sub in a edge. The rubber feet keep the bar standing still, and also I’ve flipped the equalization (EQ) switch on its ago to “Table” rather than “Wall” for obvious reasons (mounts come with the package for wall mounting and mate with the sound bar so as to lock it in position). The 36-inch length fits sensibly unobtrusively under many any type of flat panel or display.

I’m taking the optical digital audio output from the TV straight into the optical digital audio input on the sound bar and also that’s the extent of the cabled setup. No have to use the coaxial input or the analog L/R RCA plugs — although considering that there’s no “true” surround sound, simulated surround have the right to be had regardmuch less of the input used. And I’ll simply leave the power switch in the “On” place, as soon as I’ve plugged in the power adapter.

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Now the insides of the sound bar (magnetically shielded, natch) is composed of two-way dual thrust left and also best speakers modules, each with its own 3-inch midrange driver and also a 3/4th-inch dome tweeter, video shielded. Of course you need to power the amplifier with AC current, however for that you get 50 watts of power (25 x 2) at 8 ohms, via a frequency selection of 20Hz – 20kHz. That’s even more than dynamic enough to provide for a full range when listening — in truth to be fair, most of us that listened to loud music flourishing up or have aged can’t hear all the frequencies being readily available anymeans. Thanks, ravages of time.

There’s no remote to the SB 16 so you have two means of managing what the sound bar does: a series of butloads at the height edge of the sound bar manage such points as the power, volume levels, source selected (have to you use more than among the inputs) and also activation of the simulated “surround” that transforms off the stereo audio response. Illumicountry of the buttons aid in understanding what you’ve pressed, however many will certainly find, as I did, that it’s simpler to simply use an existing remote to handle these controls. That’s bereason the sound bar allows this, obviously, and also the setup just needs pushing a collection of the buttons on the bar in tandem via the remote being used. It sounds a lot even more facility than it is to execute. Just follow the directions in the hand-operated.

As for the sub, once turned on and also left alone, the just indication of when its receiving an audio signal from the sound bar is once the amber “standby” light on the top transforms blue. That — and the rumbling that it’s currently making. Both the harguy kardon SB 16’s sound bar and also sub go out of”standby” once audio is sensed and for all handy purposes it is instantaneous.

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Turing on the TV, I reduced its volume to 0 considering that utilizing “Mute” display screens a message box constantly. Having collection the volumes on both the sound bar and sub one click above the middle, I start some severe TV broadcast listening while fiddling via the “Trim” switch. The purpose — to alter the audio response till I’m satisfied through the high quality of the dialogue being presented. Like so many kind of audio controls, your personal preferences will dictate which of the three settings will be the “correct” one: I finished up leaving it at “2” except when I really pumelted the volume method up during a movie (then “1” operated better).

Switching between TV networks, I hit a couple of talk reflects, some syndicated sitcoms and a few movies courtesy of HBO. Averaging the outcomes over a few days, I can confidently say that the audio in basic is obviously premium to the teeny TV’s internal speakers, specifically when it pertains to dialogue which is crisp and also clear.

To attempt out the harguy kardon SB 16’s “digital 3D” surround mode, I use the remote that I paired through it earlier and also run DVD movies through the sound bar while switching the mode on and off irregularly. I found the mode to be generally reliable at simulating a surround effect — especially at extremely loud levels, although this resulted in the dialogue to be a little bit ragged in my estimation. I have the right to say that making use of it have the right to be reliable in a lot of situations — however I wouldn’t just leave it on no issue what is playing. Some consideration as to when it will be provided must be part of the listening procedure.

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Editor’s Rating:Great

Bottom line: The sound bar is svelte and also lightweight sufficient to sit easily on a table or mount to a wall (8 lbs.) — the very same can’t be shelp for the subwoofer which has actually 34 lbs. working, so be cautious you don’t drop it on your feet while relocating it around during the initial setup. The real problem — that of the audio response — is spot on for watching tv and movies in a bedroom, because you have the right to get a high quality response that obviates the ho-hum coming from 95%+ of TVs via more than enough volume without hitting distortion. Although the price may be a bit off-placing to some, taking right into account that besides a high quality harguy kardon “build” in the sound bar, there’s an consisted of wireless subwoofer that is both convenient to use and also a powerful enhancement to the audio endure. All all set to go in a solitary package that is the SB 16.

Pros

Wireless subwooferVirtual surround capabilitiesCan usage existing remote to control sound bar

Cons

Trim control might confuse the novice audiophileGlossy black sound bar and also sub will obtain dusty fastPrice might revolve off the novice