Soundbar vs Bluetooth speakers: which one has better sound quality?

Which the best soundbar vs bluetooth speakers? In the past, people listened to music using passive speakers connected to CD players, cassette decks, or turntables. Today, Bluetooth speakers and soundbars, which offer immersive sound experiences are considered more convenient home audio system options for enhancing sound.

But, with such a wide range of speakers available in the digital age, differentiation between them can be a challenge. Despite this, each has its advantages.

This article discusses the features of Bluetooth speakers and soundbars. It will help you decide which audio system to choose.

soundbar vs bluetooth speakers


If you enjoy watching TV, you may have noticed that the sound quality from the TV’s built-in speakers is not always satisfactory because the TV speakers cannot provide the best sound quality due to their location on the back of the TV. Sound waves reflecting off the walls can cause echo and reduce the clarity of the TV speakers. A soundbar can be a useful solution for this issue.

A sound bar is a speaker set that enhances the audio quality of your TV.And we can say that soundbars replace TV speakers. Due to their shape and design, this sound system is easy to install next to a TV, monitor, or other display devices.

Many come with multiple speakers and sometimes dedicated built-in subwoofers for deep bass.

Soundbars as audio devices are made to offer superior sound quality than your TV’s built-in speakers. With a soundbar, you’ll hear improved TV’s audio, which gives you a richer and more immersive experience.

Soundbars are quite versatile representatives of a sound system. They usually only need one wire to connect to your TV. Surround sound speakers have many individual speakers, and each speaker must be connected to an AV receiver. Typically, the AV receiver can be connected to the soundbar using HDMI or optical cable.

In addition to Bluetooth connectivity, the soundbar can also be connected via Wi-Fi allowing you to play music on a wider range of devices than Bluetooth. Using Wi-Fi, you can network multiple devices and enjoy better sound quality.

7 main types of soundbars

When it comes to soundbars, there is a wide range of options on the market. Each is designed to meet different needs and preferences. An understanding of the different types of sound bar can help you make an informed choice about the right one for your home sound system setup.

Here are the 7 types of soundbars.

  1. Traditional soundbars

Traditional sound bars are compact TV audio device that consists of a single unit with several built-in speakers. They are more effective in reproducing excellent sound effects, which can provide a more immersive sound experience.

  1. Soundbars with wireless subwoofer

Soundbars with subwoofers contain a special low-frequency speaker that reproduces quality sound at low frequencies. A wireless subwoofer is convenient in that it can be placed anywhere in the room for optimal bass reproduction.

The integration of the soundbar’s speakers and a dedicated subwoofer creates a wider soundstage, allowing you to feel part of the action.

Unfortunately, when using a separate subwoofer, you need to find a suitable location in the room, which can take up extra space.

  1. Soundbars with surround speakers

Surround soundbars have separate rear speakers that together with the center speaker create a more immersive surround sound experience. They require more space and proper placement and connection, which may require wired and wireless connections.

  1. Dolby Atmos soundbars

A Dolby Atmos soundbar delivers a more engaging audio experience by producing surround sound from all directions. With enhanced detail, customization flexibility, and compatibility with today’s content, Dolby Atmos soundbars provide superior sound for any home theater setup.

It is also important that the content you want to watch, play, or listen to is Dolby Atmos compatible.

  1. Gaming soundbars

Gaming soundbars are meticulously engineered to amplify the gaming experience. These soundbars are frequently equipped with distinct audio modes and adjustable RGB lighting.

They emit mighty and authentic sound, completely engrossing you in the gameplay, thereby providing you with an advantage over other gamers.

A gaming soundbar ought to be compatible with both your game console and PC’s audio outputs. Additionally, take into account features such as USB ports for connecting gaming headsets, customizable equalizer settings, and connectivity with other gaming accessories.

  1. Smart soundbars

Smart soundbars combine high-quality audio performance with intelligent features and wireless connectivity. They integrate advanced voice assistants enabling you to effortlessly control the soundbar and other smart devices using your voice alone.

Essentially, a smart soundbar is a wide loudspeaker, coveted for its superior acoustics, portability, and ease of use. It is highly favored over other speakers as it can be installed in virtually any location.

  1. Hybrid soundbars

Hybrid soundbars provide a range of functions, such as inbuilt subwoofers or removable speakers, offering versatility and flexibility.

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Bluetooth speakers

Now let’s move on to Bluetooth speakers. So, what is a Bluetooth speaker?

Bluetooth or wireless speakers are electro-audio devices that convert the audio signal into a great sound. They connect to a computer, phone, tablet, or other devices through Bluetooth technology. A speaker with up to 20 hours of battery life provides uninterrupted music playback.

A high-quality Bluetooth system can stream music, movies, and other audio files from compatible sources with built-in Bluetooth.

There are two types of speakers “floor standing speakers” and “bookshelf speakers”. For instance, floor-standing speakers can be installed in the living room, and small speakers can be placed on a bookshelf. You can also connect them to your mobile phone or tablet.

Dome-shaped speakers are the ones that really have high sound frequencies. Small speakers can be moved anywhere, but larger ones can be problematic.

Certain Bluetooth speakers possess integrated microphones, rendering them serviceable for hands-free phone conversations or voice commands.

The difference between a soundbar with multiple speakers and a Bluetooth speaker

If you want to identify the differences between a soundbar and a wireless speaker, you should look at portability and wireless features. Also, size plays an important role when it comes to space.

However, we won’t dwell only on that and will look at the other differences in more detail as well.

  • Installation process

When choosing a speaker, the first thing to consider is the installation process. Many speakers entail a complex setup procedure, whereas, with Bluetooth speakers, it is an easy method since you don’t have to worry about wires.

Also, soundbars have placement issues and require more effort to install. To achieve the desired quality sound system level, you’ll need to position separate speakers around the room. Even if you use wireless technology to connect your speakers to your AV receiver, you’ll need to connect them to a source using a power cable.

Thus, Bluetooth speakers get an extra point.

  • Sound

When considering the quality, it is evident that soundbars possess an advantage. They offer various sound reproduction options, enabling you to mimic a home theatre experience using only one speaker. Accomplishing the same effect requires the purchase of multiple Bluetooth speakers.

However, this method has its drawbacks too. If you place a soundbar in a large room, you may not experience the full depth and pitch of the sound. Nonetheless, it is ideal for use in smaller living room settings.

  • Size

Both Bluetooth speakers and soundbars are compact devices. Speakers with wireless connections are convenient for travel, making them easy to carry around. They are perfect for listening to in the bedroom, on road trips, or at pool parties.

However, to achieve surround sound in a room, many speakers are required. A soundbar system, on the other hand, is a single unit and doesn’t require additional speakers on either side to function. They work well as a standalone device.

  • Cost

As previously mentioned, there is a diverse selection of Bluetooth-enabled speakers on the market. Prices fluctuate based on size, features, and brand, so choose the product that best suits your needs.

In comparison, the cost of soundbars is lower. You can find many soundbars at an affordable price point.

Therefore, in terms of cost-effectiveness, soundbars come out on top. It is now up to you to determine which one is superior within your budget.

There is one more feature to consider, and that is the surround sound system. But we will consider this feature in a separate paragraph.

Surround sound system

A surround sound system is a configuration of audio formats of 3 or more speakers. A basic surround system includes a center channel, a left channel, and a right channel. However, surround sound systems are most commonly available in 5 and 7-channel versions.

This surround sound system increases the fidelity of sound reproduction and creates a more immersive experience.

Both speakers and soundbars have a feature of surround sound system. A surround soundbar will certainly enhance the sound of your TV, but surround speakers usually provide the best acoustic quality.

With surround speakers, the sound will come from literally everywhere, something that cannot be achieved with a regular soundbar. Although some soundbars advertise surround sound with different audio formats, you will need to purchase additional speakers to get true sound.

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Final thoughts

In conclusion, Bluetooth speakers are undoubtedly small and can be quickly placed anywhere, while a soundbar, on the other hand, costs less.

Quality sound requires that the intensity of sound and bass reach the listeners, which can be obtained in Bluetooth speakers.

Even if Bluetooth speakers have more advantages, it doesn’t make a soundbar a bad acoustic system for your home. Soundbars are good, and you can use them as your home audio system.

From the above comparison, we can conclude that both audio systems have their advantages and disadvantages.

Topics & Questions

Here is a list of topics and questions whose main purpose is to find out the benefits of speakers and soundbars. I will answer the most frequently asked questions and I hope my answers will be useful to you.

Is a soundbar better than a Bluetooth speaker?

Bluetooth speakers have better sound quality than soundbars. But a soundbar does a better job of emulating 5 speakers surrounding a space than a single speaker. Soundbars have better sound quality than Bluetooth speakers. And a soundbar is a great solution for those who can’t afford a home theater system.

What is better soundbar or speakers?

While listening to music at a very high volume, speakers may marginally outperform soundbars. However, this can vary based on the quality and price of the specific speakers. Consequently, soundbars priced similarly to speakers usually offer better audio quality for all uses.

Can I use a soundbar as a Bluetooth speaker?

The soundbar can be connected to other devices that have Bluetooth or wireless connectivity like a TV, tablet, or mobile phone. You cannot connect the soundbar to other Bluetooth headphones, soundbars, or speakers.

Can a soundbar replace speakers?

Yes, simply connect the soundbar to your television’s audio output, which should be at line level, and ensure that the main volume is fully turned down. Remember to purchase a set of surround sound speakers or a powered soundbar.

Is Bluetooth good for soundbar?

Bluetooth is adequate for playing music and watching basic YouTube videos on your phone, but the audio and video quality may not be optimal.

Will a soundbar improve sound quality?

Yes, soundbars can indeed be a valuable addition to your audio system, providing enhanced clarity and bass reproduction. Nevertheless, it’s crucial to acknowledge that sound quality hinges on various factors, and soundbars aren’t perfect.

To maximize your soundbar’s potential, it’s indispensable to select a superior model, position it optimally, and take into account the room’s acoustics.

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