Roku Soundbar Review 2022: Is It For You?

Roku Soundbar Review 2022 Is It For You

Roku has long been the leader in streaming TV, and now they have a Sound Bar. The Roku soundbar is a solid offering from a company that values good television experiences.

A soundbar from a company that values good television experiences. In-depth Roku soundbar review for your consideration. There are tons of soundbars out there, but a Roku soundbar stands apart from the rest by providing a richer viewing experience.

You can read our full review to learn more. The Roku Soundbar is a well-rated audio device in a competitive market.

Pros And Cons of Roku Smart Soundbar

Pros

  • It is a combination of a Roku streaming device and a soundbar.
  • Simple setup and excellent sound from one bar
  • Upgrade to a subwoofer for $179 is an option.

Cons

  • Some soundbars with streamer-less soundbars can be found for less and still sound great.
  • There are no buttons (including power) or Roku remote finder on the unit like the Roku Ultra.
  • Wireless speakers are not worth the upgrade.

Pros And Cons of Roku Smart Soundbar

Smart soundbar improves audio and streaming channels with one device and one remote. Add any TV to the Soundbar.

The sound quality is excellent for a bar without a Roku wireless subwoofer, and the streaming section runs as smoothly as I have expected from any Roku streamer. It uses the simple software of the company to stream thousands upon thousands of apps to your TV.

Roku offers two additional options: a wireless subwoofer for $180 that amplifies the bass and wireless rear speakers for $150 that provide virtual surround sound. Both add-ons are great and improve the bar’s audio capabilities. If you have to choose between them, I recommend the sub.

While the bar was rock-solid in my testing, there were some minor compromises in the name of simplicity.

There are no buttons on this bar, making it difficult to quickly find the tv remote or pair a Bluetooth device. Redundancy is a more significant issue than you might think.

Roku streamers can be very cheap, and most smart TVs these days are capable of handling them. Additionally, many soundbars offer better overall value.

It is an excellent option for those who don’t have a Roku streamer or other streaming device and still want to add a soundbar. It’s also ideal for smaller living spaces or older TVs.

Design

The smart soundbar, unlike last year’s Roku Wireless speakers, can be used with any TV. However, pairing it with a RokuTV would be redundant as both the TV and the bar have Roku built-in

With its seamless plastic construction and rounded ends, the soundbar is very good for under $200. It is more like a Bowers and Wilkins Panorama than any of its budget competitors.

It measures 2.8 inches in height and 32.2 inches in width. The front is cloth-wrapped and features a single operation LED lamp. The unit also includes four full-range 2.5-inch drivers behind the grill.

The unit doesn’t have any controls or even a power switch. All you see is a Roku logo. The remote controls everything. The lack of buttons was a significant problem for me as I often misplace my remote.

The Roku Ultra has a small finder, but there’s no one for the soundbar. Although you can control the bar with Roku’s app, it’s not ideal for everyone.

The back of the unit has an HDMI ARC port, an optical, and a USB port to the streaming media player. A few wall-mounting screws are available.

If you have the Spotify app, your Roku will also support Bluetooth. The bar does not have buttons, so you will need to navigate to Bluetooth tiles on the smart TV to pair your device. However, once you are paired, you can stream via Bluetooth even if the TV is off.

The system can decode Dolby Audio and PCM soundtracks. There are no immersive codecs such as Dolby Atmos.

Roku supports HDR10 and 4K video, so apps such as Netflix and Vudu can look fabulous on a 4K HDR TV.

You’re likely to be familiar with Roku TVs. The Roku smart soundbar interface provides all inputs at the top. They also display the device each port is attached to.

Roku Smart Soundbar, on the other hand, doesn’t allow input switching. You connect the bar via HDMI to the TV, and then everything will be connected to your TV.

You cannot manually switch to the optical audio input. The optical port will not work if there is nothing plugged into the HDMI port. Roku states that the optical port is available for TVs without ARC support via HDMI.

The familiar voice remote comes with the Roku. You can search using your voice remote by pressing a button at the center of the wand. It also offers volume controls on either side.

It’s a simple clicker that is fun. Roku’s headphone jack feature can be used to listen to music without disturbing others. However, the Roku app cannot be used because the bar’s remote does not have a headphone socket.

The company also offers a $179 Wireless Subwoofer to enhance the bass. The unit is 12 inches cubed and includes a 10-inch driver.

You can disable the sub by hitting the Bass Offsetting in the sound settings menu. This is useful if you have neighbors complaining about loud movies.

The company also added the ability for you to pair two Roku TV Wireless Speakers to the system. Or, you could use the $149 Onn Roku Wireless Surround speakers, exclusive to Walmart.

The Roku bar setup was much easier than the Yamaha YAS-109, which required a specific app from a dozen Yamaha apps to function. The Roku guides you through each step, and I was ready in minutes.

The Roku TV Wireless Speakers were a bit more difficult to add. I had to unplug and plug them several times before they registered.

The only issue I had with the satellite speakers was the lip-synch. I had to resolve this via the M Series Vizio TV. There are no sync controls.

How Does Roku Smart Soundbar Perform?

The video quality was excellent and comparable to other Roku units, such as the Streaming Stick Plus. I also didn’t notice any longer loading times, which I had seen on my older-gen Roku Ultra. My test Vizio 4K TV could display and glean the HDR information that the soundbar sent to The Mandalorian via Disney Plus.

Although the Roku is sub-par in home cinema, it offers a lot of pop and clarity with music and movies. You can adjust the bass weight to your content by using the controls in the menus.

For Red Right Hand, Nick Cave, and Bad Seeds’ test track, the bass seemed a bit too strong for me. With the Reduced Bass enabled, the song sounded better. The Yamaha YAS-109 produced a much more powerful sound but with a more precise bass.

How Does Roku Smart Soundbar Perform

The song’s harsh organ chords were too difficult to hear, no matter what sound modes I used on the Yamaha. The organ sounded much more natural and integrated into the song when I listened to Roku.

Although the Roku channel isn’t loud enough to be heard, it won’t distort at maximum volume leveling. The Roku was still audible in the CNET’s small testing room. I also found the dialogue at the beginning of Avatar’s Thanator chase scene to be very clear.

However, there wasn’t as much jungle buzzing and no thump from the trees falling. Although there were some glimpses of ambiance with specific sounds, it was not as engaging when the action escalated: I felt a lack of danger and dynamics while the Thanator attacked.

Although Dr. Grace Augustine’s voice was more evident on the Yamaha, the Yamaha’s dialog was less clear. But the jungle came alive: Bugs appeared from the top, and the sounds of the pachyderm that charged Jake reverberated room-filling sound.

The Yamaha had a more powerful thump from the shell trees, which resulted in more drama and dynamic range.

The Roku was also compared to the Vizio SB3621, my budget soundbar. The Roku has an unfair advantage over a subwoofer, and it made its ability to communicate with the content. As it did with the Yamaha, the jungle was alive and well.

The sub of the Vizio made my chair move in ways that the sub-less Roku couldn’t. The Roku sub was essential for a better punch. However, it doubles the price of the product. The reserve is worth looking at, though, because it makes the system even better.

Finally, I tried the Roku TV soundbar and found no controls for the volume of surround sound. Because the setup shown in the above picture was too loud, I had to play music around with the placement. I found that 3 feet away was the best distance to listen to what I was hearing.

Although the speakers and soundbar seemed to sync perfectly, the TV’s sound system was slightly off. However, a little tweaking could fix that.

The soundbar added a lot to the movies’ ambiance, but was the upgrade worth $150-$200? No. It’s not the same as the subwoofer. That’s the first thing you should do.

Features of the Roku Smart Soundbar

Roku Streaming

This model can be used as a 4K HDR streaming device. You don’t need to purchase a roku media streamer stick such as the Amazon Fire TV. Roku streaming can be done with a media streamer if you add it.

Roku Smart Soundbar streaming can be used in the same way as other high-end soundbars with voice control. The Smart Bar does not have a voice assistant, but it can support video and music streaming and provide a stable connection to all your favorite apps, including Amazon Music, Amazon Prime Video, Google Play Movies & TV (but not Google Play Music), Hulu, iHeartRadio, Netflix, Pandora, SiriusXM, Sling TV, Spotify, and YouTube.

Because it has a soundbar as its primary function, scenes in movies will look more authentic.

Subwoofer

Although the Roku Smart Soundbar does not come with a subwoofer, you can easily add one to your system. A subwoofer can be helpful for music with a lot of basses or for those who enjoy the booming sounds.

You can improve the sound quality with your Roku Smart Soundbar by purchasing small subwoofers below 500.

Our experts discovered that the soundbar could be made more complex by adding a wireless subwoofer. The subwoofer can also reduce the possibility of a weak or punchy bass boost.

You can add a subwoofer to your Roku Smart Soundbar package.

If you do not know where to place soundbar with subwoofer, please check https://hookeaudio.com/where-to-place-subwoofer-with-soundbar/

Connectivity

No soundbar will share compatible connections with your TV, no matter how good sound quality the product is. Let’s look at the links featured in this section.

Roku Smart Soundbar’s HDMI port makes it compatible with flat-screen TVs such as TCL 50S53. This allows for a simple setup. It’s more than an HDMI port. It can send and receive signals.

For easy installation, the HDMI ARC port is supplied with a high speed via HDMI ARC cable. The Roku Soundbar has an optical audio input as well as an HDMI connection.

Both the HDMI cable and optical audio cable can be plugged in and activated immediately. Our experts recommend that you use the visual cable connection if your TV does not have HDMI.

It has a USB port that supports wireless playback as well as saved content. We haven’t had any connectivity issues overall.

Wireless connectivity

The majority of basic soundbar designs will include Bluetooth for wireless streaming and wireless speakers. The Roku Smart Soundbar, an affordable soundbar with Bluetooth and Wi-Fi connectivity, is even more impressive.

You can also connect your phone to the device. It is highly convenient and can be used with Alexa devices or Google Assistant to provide hands-free control.

Our experts recommend Wi-Fi connections because they offer more stability. Bluetooth is more easily accessible on electronic devices and can be used for streaming content. It is distance-based, which means that the closer the two devices are, Bluetooth will work better.

Although it is wireless, it does not offer Wi-Fi some flexibility in terms of placement. Our reviews indicate that pairing is simple as the bar automatically connects when it’s in pairing mode.

Wireless connectivity

Our team recommends Wi-Fi for wireless connectivity. For stability, make sure you stay within a 30-foot radius.

Bluetooth is beneficial for wireless speakers. Pairing is simple as both devices will detect each other and connect. In the past, Roku introduced the Roku TV wireless speakers. The Roku wireless speakers were not compatible with all televisions.

Your Wi-Fi network should be stable so that the connection to the soundbar can work even when you aren’t in your living room. Roku Smart Soundbars can be placed up to 30 feet away from the TV and still produce unique sounds without any lag.

Control

Roku bars come with their remote controls. The bright buttons stand out against the plain black body. It is easy to use the clicker to access the volume and settings. There are buttons for Home, Back, and Power and Option, Microphone, and Playback.

The intelligent bar has a volume and power button, as well as other streaming options. The bar does not have a control panel so that you can rely solely on the clicker for all adjustments and screen options.

Roku also offers a mobile Roku app that allows you to control everything on your phone. However, this app is not part of the purchase.

Roku Soundbar Review Control

You won’t experience any problems even if you don’t install the app. It’s much easier to control the bar with the simple-to-use remote than in Yamaha SR-C20A, which can integrate via mobile app compatibility.

Once you have the clicker, it’s easy to personalize your private listening experience. With a click, you can switch between streaming services. The buttons marked with Netflix, Disney, and Sling are visible.

You can change the sound settings to suit your preferences by going to the menu page. You can also use the clicker to control your TV.

Installation

The soundbars for TVs are essential to us as a team. But, people often forget about the setup.

In just minutes, you can be enjoying the good sound and unboxing the device. Everything you need to use the soundbar comes already assembled.

The only thing you’ll see is the remote control and cables. Similar to how the Bose Solo 5 was set up. There are many tutorial videos available online for beginners.

Roku Smart Soundbar Review Installation

The Roku Smart Soundbar is consistently receiving high reviews. This may be due in part to its simple setup. Even if you have a flat-screen TV or a home theater projector below 1000, it will work with your existing home theater system setup.

You need to plug in the right cables. To locate the correct connection ports, look on the back of the TV or soundbar. After you find them, plugin both inputs and turn up the volume to enjoy your favorite music or movies with enhanced tv’s built-in speakers sound.

Price

A Roku sound bar with a lot of valuable features at an affordable price is a great option. Roku Smart Soundbar, which doubles as a streaming player, is such a device.

This speaker is worth more than the price. You can enjoy your favorite TV shows, movies, and channels all while listening to great sound.

The soundbar does not have any advanced audio technology, except Dolby Audio, to enhance the sound. However, you can add sub- and rear speakers to make it a complete surround sound system.

If you have an existing streaming device or game console, however, you may be able to purchase a soundbar for a lower price.

Roku Smart Soundbar and Subwoofer Review

You can also buy a system with the sub or the complete 5.1 packages for a slightly higher price. This high-tech bar supports both Bluetooth and Wi-Fi wireless connections, and it is compatible with both Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant.

Our experts were impressed by the Roku Smart Bar’s audio performance and volume levels when playing their favorite content. This is why they were surprised at the low price.

Roku Smart Soundbar makes an excellent investment because it allows TVs to access more apps. It is not easy to achieve high quality, high definition sound, and speech clarity without spending a few hundred. This is an upgrade that’s worth the cost of other models.

Video

FAQs

Is it worth the Roku soundbar?

The Roku Smart Soundbar is worth it. Roku Smart Soundbar makes a significant investment in your home cinema system.

The soundbar is packed with advanced features like HD, 4K, and HDR compatibility, Wi-Fi and Bluetooth streaming, HDMI ARC connection, Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant support, and a very intuitive remote.

Is it worth the Roku soundbar

What is the Roku soundbar?

Roku smart soundbar connects directly to your TV using the HDMI ARC port. You can also connect wirelessly using the Bluetooth and Wi-Fi features. Once you have joined, you can use the colorful remote control to set the settings.

Conclusion

The soundbar is a solid offering from a company that values good television experiences. If you are looking for a soundbar that is updated with modern features, Roku Smart Soundbar has you covered. We can’t find any issues with the soundbar. Roku has built an excellent product that delivers a quality television experience.

Hooke Audio hope you find our Roku smart soundbar review helpful and we look forward to your comments and suggestions.

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