Presented in partnership with Roku
There is arguably no technology in modern times that has evolved as quickly and splendidly as televisions.
It seems like just yesterday TVs built like middle linebackers clogged up our living rooms, the dim picture limping toward our pupils.
Today’s TVs are a marvel—bigger, thinner, brighter, and with enough clarity to empathize with actors with bad skin.
The razor thin profile leaves something to be desired sound-wise, and I’ve spent one too many nights jacking up the volume to 82 and wondering if everyone else in the room was picking up on just 28% of the dialogue.
***This is probably a good time to admit that I’m NOT a Tech Guy*** I am only qualified to write about my experience with the Roku Soundbar and Subwoofer through the perspective of two functioning ear drums. You will not hear much about the Soundbar’s two-channel stereo separation that creates a wider sound field or the sub’s thunderous 250W peak power and 125W RMS response or any of that wizardry. But, hey, you don’t have to be a botanist to know that lilacs smell heavenly.
So, after 30 days of audio enlightenment, here is my assessment of the Roku Smart Soundbar and wireless Subwoofer given four criteria that matter most to me.
THE ‘DUMMY’ TEST
Not only is the setup a breeze (literally plug the Soundbar into your HDMI port and the sub into a wall outlet) but the products make my entire home theater production easier and more efficient. It has a Roku streaming player inside the speaker and a dedicated remove that allows voice commands to control the volume, search for movies, or launch specific channels.
You can also download the Roku app on your phone and pair it to the Soundbar, a life-saver when you’re in need of typing account usernames and passwords.
THE ‘ELEGANCE’ TEST
Soundbar is sharp; handsome even—32-inches long, dark gray grille cloth with matte black finish, smooth edges.
The Subwoofer sits right next to my couch, stout and regal, classy and powerful.
THE ‘EAR’ TEST
With flying colors. The sound is full and balanced. The dialogue comes in with crystal clear clarity, and the optional speech enhancement mode amplifies the common frequency bands of speaking to expand the sound out further. No longer am I using subtitles as a crutch. I could cry.
The Subwoofer has a 250-watt, 10-inch driver, which to me just means, “black block go boom.” It adds deep, powerful bass that automatically adjusts itself to synergize with the volume of the Soundbar. Above all, a game-changer for video games.
THE ‘AFFORDABILITY’ TEST
One scroll through surround sound audio systems and it becomes clear: premium audio is expensive.
The Roku Soundbar and Subwoofer—sold separately for $179.99 a piece—are an ideal option for those who want a premium home theater experience without having to sell a vital organ.
MY OVERALL RECOMMENDATION:
Happy listening, my friends.
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