In my opinions, soundbars that embody subwoofers usually sound higher than standalone soundbars with no subs, for one apparent cause: extra bass. The subwoofer provides plenty of low-end influence and creates a fuller sound, however these huge bass containers take up plenty of room. What if you need a speaker that generates an enormous soundfield and good bass, however solely makes use of the house in entrance of your TV? The Vizio M21D-H8 makes an incredible case for the one speaker system — it sounds enormous but stays comparatively compact. 

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Spectacular sound from a single unitGreat for TV reveals and music, tooTwo HDMI inputsSupports Dolby Digital, DTS and DTS Digital:X

Do not Like

Prices virtually as a lot as the higher sounding Vizio V21No deep bass to talk of

The Vizio’s sound high quality is a large step above a tv’s, which you’d count on, and set my toes tapping. It sounds good with most motion pictures and music and is comparatively straightforward to arrange. In contrast to virtually some other single bar close to this value the Vizio M21 contains two HDMI ports, which actually boosts its flexibility. And there is Bluetooth streaming your music as effectively.

At $150 the M21 is comparatively inexpensive, though it would not ship the visceral bass of as subwoofer-equipped items round this value, such because the Inventive Stage V2 or Vizio’s personal V21. In the event you’re seeking to ditch the subwoofer, nevertheless, there’s nothing on this value vary that may problem the Vizio M21 for compact measurement, wonderful options and full sound. 

Going to a single bar

Ty Pendlebury/Proinertech

Soundbars aren’t usually identified for his or her sleekness however I discovered the Vizio M21D-H8’s trapezoidal design fairly hanging. Name it a Toblerone should you like, I actually do, however Vizio clearly would not care. Whereas it seems much like the SB362An-F6 it replaces, the design has been simplified — the little triangles on one aspect are actually changed by a single Vizio brand, for instance. On the opposite finish are buttons for quantity, supply choice and Bluetooth.

This sound bar is 36 inches lengthy and is designed to sit down in entrance of your TV — offered you have got sufficient clearance for its 2-inch peak — or it may be mounted on the wall (with two keyhole ports) to level outward into your room. It contains six drivers comprising of two woofers, twin tweeters and a pair of 3-inch onboard “subwoofers.” There isn’t any subwoofer output, nevertheless, so you possibly can’t add a separate sub later.

The M21 includes a collection of white LEDs denoting quantity and EQ

Ty Pendlebury/Proinertech

The entrance of the cloth-covered cupboard features a coloured LED to indicate the enter in addition to a collection of white LEDs for quantity. It is rather a lot higher than the outdated system, which was nearly incomprehensible, however nonetheless not as clear as an precise alphanumeric show, for instance.

Ty Pendlebury/Proinertech

The rear has a scooped-out part for the inputs alongside two keyholes for wall-mounting. The largest improve on the unique, and maybe the explanation behind the $30 value bump, is the addition of two HDMI ports: HDMI in and HDMI ARC. Whereas some individuals use their TVs as a swap, the extra HDMI is beneficial if, say, you employ your sensible TV for streaming and need to add a second system, like a gaming console. The soundbar additionally contains optical audio for hooking up your TV, two 3.5mm analog ports with one for a voice assistant just like the Amazon Echo Dot, and a USB port for taking part in MP3s and WAVs from a thumb drive. 

The Vizio has each Dolby and DTS decoding, which is spectacular for a sound bar at any value, plus it has DTS Digital:X, which is designed to simulate sound coming from round and above you, and that works particularly effectively.

Ty Pendlebury/Proinertech

The distant affords highly effective ranges of management for an inexpensive soundbar, with quantity plus two bands of EQ and an enter selector. The again of the distant helpfully features a coloration code chart of the inputs.

How does it sound?

The M21’s audio high quality was excellent general, though is lack of bass in comparison with subwoofer-equipped items got here by means of in my comparisons. 

As I’ve discovered with earlier soundbars that includes DTS Digital:X, this expertise actually helps fill a room with lifelike sound. Face to face in opposition to a soundbar that does not have it, just like the Inventive Stage V2, the variations are apparent. The Vizio was straightforward to lose bodily whereas watching blockbuster motion pictures, whereas the Inventive’s sound at all times appeared prefer it was coming from the cupboard.

The Vizio’s expansive soundstage was instantly apparent throughout the foyer scene in The Matrix. After Neo (Keanu Reeves) journeys the metallic detector and decorates the marble-walled room with garlands of lead, a single soldier shouts “Freeze” (1.42:09)  The shout and its gradual decay crammed the room in a manner the Inventive could not. But the Inventive was in a position to articulate the explosions and bass-led soundtrack that the subwoofer-less Vizio missed.

In contrast in opposition to the Vizio V21, one other unit with a subwoofer, the M21’s openness and relative lack of bass had been as soon as once more obvious. The M21 sounded extra vibrant throughout the foyer scene, even when it could not match the V21 for influence. That deep bassline popped up on occasion on the one bar when there wasn’t the rest occurring, however I heard it full throttle with the V21. 

One factor you do not usually get from a funds soundbar, even one with Bluetooth, is affinity with music, but the Vizio held its personal with a variety of completely different genres. It was in a position to current vocals with convincing articulation, and make the instrumentation coalesce as one unit. 

With the nippiness anthem Lebanese Blonde by Thievery Company, for instance, the Vizio sounded clean by means of the bass and midrange even when it lacked the oomph different soundbars get with a separate sub. On the Inventive Stage V2 music was tight and a bit extra thrilling, though it demonstrated one of many potential weaknesses of those form of programs — the decrease mids gave the impression to be lacking. Consequently the track got here throughout as a little bit skinny sounding.

Must you purchase it?

The Vizio M21 is a wonderful single-bar system with loads of connectivity and a classy, delicate design. I do know of no different single bar that prices lower than $200 that gives as a lot. 

That mentioned, it is cannibalized by the existence of the corporate’s personal M21: at $150 the V21 is relatively an excessive amount of. Whereas it is often on sale for $120, and is $116.22 at Amazon proper now, a number of locations promote it for full value. For a similar $150 you should buy the V21, and it comes with a wi-fi subwoofer, so if it is a selection between the 2 get the V21 as an alternative. Equally the $109 Inventive Stage V2 affords a separate sub which additionally lifts its efficiency, and cut price hunters seeking to extract the maximize efficiency for the littlest sum of money ought to get (the) Inventive.

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