soundbar for projector

The speakers on most projectors are relatively weak and don’t have the best sound quality, especially when it comes to the lower end of the sonic spectrum. A soundbar is a compact means of adding an external sound source. You can find quality options at every price point, too, so it’s an affordable way to meet your sound needs.

Based on output and sound quality, the Klipsch Cinema 600 is the best soundbar for a projector. >>> Find the current price on Amazon That doesn’t mean it will be the right choice for every home, though. Whether you’re looking for a soundbar for a smart home entertainment system or need powerful sound on a budget, you’ll find something to meet your needs on the list below.

Best Soundbar for Projector – Top Picks for 2022

Sonos Arc Bose Smart Soundbar 900 Klipsch Cinema 600 Bose Smart Soundbar 300 Samsung Q700A
Power No data 180W 600W(103 dB) 180 watts 160W
Subwoofer
Connectivity HDMI Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, HDMI HDMI, Bluetooth Bluetooth, HDMI, Wi-Fi Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, HDMI
Dimensions 3.4 x 45 x 4.5 41,1 x 2,3 x 4,2 50 x 20 x 17 4.02 x 26.58 x 2.21 4.5 x 38.6 x 2.4
Price

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Power

The main reason most people buy external soundbars for their projectors is they need more volume. If you get a wimpy speaker, you won’t get the big sound boost you’re looking for. All of the soundbars on this list can reach at least 90 decibels, which isn’t quite rock concert loud but is plenty to fill most rooms. For the loudest soundbar, the Klipsch Cinema 600 is the only soundbar on the list capable of producing over 100 decibels.
Most powerful soundbar: Klipsch Cinema 600

Overall Sound Quality

Bass is the main thing lacking from the built-in speakers on projectors. They just don’t have the heft to produce deep, rumbling sound effects. Many soundbars have the same problem, making an external subwoofer a necessity if you want truly immersive sound.

Balance is important too, though. If there’s too much bass or the sound is too “dark” it can be hard to hear dialogue and other details. The best soundbars for home theaters have dialogue enhancement features and content-specific settings that maintain this balance between clarity and power.
Best overall sound: Klipsch Cinema 600

Surround Sound

Soundbars are cheaper than speaker systems but they have an inherent flaw: they produce sound from a single source. That prevents them from emulating a sense of space and movement.

 

Modern soundbar manufacturers use technology to overcome this issue with varying degrees of success. The Dolby Atmos support on the Sonos Arc does a good job replicating the surround sound experience, and the Klipsch Cinema 600 is fairly immersive, as well. For the best surround sound emulation, the Acoustic Beam technology employed by the Samsung HW-Q700A gives it a similarly immersive soundscape to a 3.1.2 system, effectively mimicking the movement and depth of a full speaker system.
Best surround sound: Samsung Q700A

Smart Features

If you have (or want) a smart home theater, getting a soundbar with voice control features built right in will be very handy. Amazon Alexa voice control is the most common system, and is supported on the Sonos Arc, Samsung Q700A, and Bose Smart Soundbars. The Bose 300 and 900 both also support Google Assistant, giving them more versatility for different smart home set-ups.
Best smart features: Bose Smart Soundbar 300, Bose Smart Soundbar 900


Sonos Arc

Sonos Arc

The Sonos Arc is built for use with large screens, making it a perfect choice for projectors. Its immersive sound quality is its main strength. It supports Dolby Atmos for immersive three-dimensional sound, with 11 drivers for a sound that’s powerful and well-balanced through the entire frequency range.

The tuning on the Sonos Arc is perfect for home theater use, too. Its Speech Enhancement technology produces noticeably clearer dialogue than less sophisticated soundbars, with enhanced tuning that adapts the sound to meet the acoustic needs of your space. While the sound is on the brighter side, it’s not lacking in bass power and does justice to movie sound effects and soundtracks.

Another benefit of the Sonos arc is that it’s easy to install and use. Its slim profile mounts easily to the wall. For content, you can stream music through Wi-Fi or using the Sonos app. It can be controlled using the included remote or with voice control through Amazon Alexa, so it’s a good choice for smart homes, too.

Pros

  • Supports 3D sound through Dolby Atmos
  • Excellent mid-range clarity for dialogue
  • Built-in voice control through Amazon Alexa
  • Trueplay tuning optimizes sound to the room’s acoustics
  • Stream music through Sonos app or Sonos Radio

Cons

  • No Bluetooth connectivity
  • Some compression artifacts at higher volumes

Bose Smart Soundbar 900

Bose Smart Soundbar 900

The Bose 900 is the ideal soundbar for use in smart home entertainment systems. It comes with Alexa and Google Assistant voice control built-in, with a noise-rejecting microphone that will hear your commands even when you crank the volume. In addition, it supports wireless streaming through services like AirPlay 2 and Spotify Connect, and can be grouped with other Bose speakers via Wi-Fi to create multi-room music setups.

The sound quality of the Bose Smart Soundbar 900 is ideal for a home theater. Its ADAPTiQ calibration optimizes the sound for your space, with Dolby Atmos and TrueSpace technology for immersive 3D sound without the need for a complex surround sound set-up. While there’s no external subwoofer included with the Bose 900, the 7 full-range speakers inside the soundbar give it a full, powerful bass response.

We also love how user-friendly the Bose 900 is. Set-up is a breeze through the Bose Music app, which guides users through the process of calibrating the sound and connecting devices. It’s also easy to expand your sound system since it works seamlessly and wirelessly with other Bose speakers, giving you great versatility for any size home entertainment system.

Pros

  • TrueSpace processing simulates surround sound
  • ADAPTiQ calibrates sound to your space
  • Wireless streaming through AirPlay, Chromecast, and Spotify Connect
  • Easy set-up through Bose Music app
  • Built-in voice control through Google or Alexa
  • Syncs wirelessly with other Bose speakers and headphones

Cons

  • External subwoofer must be purchased separately

Klipsch Cinema 600

Klipsch Cinema 600

Klipsch is a brand name audiophiles know and love, with a well-earned reputation for making durable high-quality audio equipment for listening rooms and home theaters. The Klipsch Cinema 600 system includes a 3-speaker soundbar and an 8” wireless subwoofer, both of which have the elegant design and high sound quality Klipsch is known for.

 

The clarity of the signal from the Klipsch Cinema 600 is its most impressive quality. It stays crisp and detailed throughout the frequency range and at all volume levels, with three different dialogue enhancement modes. It gets louder than most subwoofers, too, with 600 watts of peak power for an output that can exceed 100 decibels.

 

The Klipsch Cinema 600 comes with an HDMI cable for quickly connecting to your projector. Audio Return Channel (ARC) technology lets you control the soundbar and subwoofer easily with one remote and it pairs with the Klipsch Connect app for updates, support, and EQ adjustment. While it doesn’t have the smart features you’ll find on other soundbars, it’s the top choice if sound quality is your main consideration.

 

Pros

  • True hi-fi sound for music or home theater
  • Unique, elegant design, especially on subwoofer
  • Virtualized 5.1 surround sound emulation
  • High peak power and maximum output
  • Pairs with Klipsch Connect app

Cons

  • No voice control support
  • Larger and heavier than other soundbars

Bose Smart Soundbar 300

Bose Smart Soundbar 300

The Bose Smart Soundbar 300 has a sleek profile that’s less than 3” in height, ideal for those who don’t have a lot of room to spare on their entertainment center. You can also mount it to the wall with the included brackets, expanding its placement versatility even further. The installation is easy, too, with an included optical cable for connecting to the TV and a guided set-up process through the Bose Music app.

Along with HDMI and optical audio inputs, the Bose Smart Soundbar 300 has wireless connectivity through Wi-Fi or Bluetooth and is compatible with streaming and mirroring programs like Spotify Connect and AirPlay2. It works both Google and Alexa voice control systems and pairs easily with other Bose products, like headphones or stand-alone subwoofers.

From a sound quality perspective, this Bose soundbar is better for home theater use than listening to music. Its output is powerful and clear enough for movies and TV shows but its low end does suffer from the lack of a subwoofer and its overall sound isn’t as immersive or three-dimensional.

Pros

  • Slim profile
  • Clear, detailed sound ideal for home theaters
  • Works with both Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa
  • Extensive connectivity
  • Simple set-up through Bose Music app
  • Easily expand the system with compatible Bose products

Cons

  • No subwoofer included
  • Doesn’t support 3D sound

Samsung Q700A

Samsung Q700A

If you’re looking for theater-quality sound at an affordable price, the Samsung Q700A is a great option. It matches the specs of soundbars that cost twice as much. This includes its connectivity and smart features, with Alexa voice control capability and support for technology like Apple AirPlay and the SmartThings app.

The Samsung Q700A uses the company’s Q-Symphony synchronization technology. This tracks the audio signal scene-by-scene, optimizing the sound for clarity and balance. Its SpaceFit Sound technology does the same for your room, calibrating the soundbar output to fill your space and prevent hotspots and dead zones.

You can emulate a 3.1.2 surround sound system with just the Q700A soundbar and included subwoofer. The 8 speakers between them use Acoustic Beam technology with up-firing channels for fully immersive sound. It’s a great soundbar for all types of content, too, with a Game Pro Mode that ensures audio will sync with on-screen action and minimizes crosstalk and other distractions.

Pros

  • Immersive theater-quality sound through Dolby Atmos and DTS:X
  • Automatic sound calibration with SpaceFit
  • 1.2 channel surround sound capability
  • Hands-free control through Alexa
  • Compatible with SmartThings app
  • Excellent value

Cons

  • Less powerful output than other models

Finding the Best Soundbar for Your Projector

The biggest question you need to answer when you’re shopping for a soundbar is what kind of audio you want to use it for. If you’ll mostly be watching TV shows and movies, the clarity of the spoken word is arguably more important than the bass response or maximum volume. Many soundbars offer speech-specific settings that are great for this kind of content. While the Klipsch Cinema 600 (>>> Find on Bhphotovideo) is the top pick from a sound quality standpoint, you’ll find any of these models can be a solid choice in a home theater.

The great thing about soundbars is that they offer quality sound in a compact package—often at a better value than other speaker styles. Consider your space and your budget along with the sound quality and you’ll be guaranteed to find something that satisfies all of your sonic needs.

REFERENCES AND FURTHER READING