Updated June 2022
Best VIZIO Soundbars Review by BestReviews
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BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.Read more 
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Buying guide for Best VIZIO soundbars

The tech behind TVs has grown by leaps and bounds in the last decade. Innovations like 4K resolution, HDR, and smart TV apps have changed the game. But there’s one area where TV tech lags severely behind the times: audio. TV speakers generally sound tinny and often make it hard to distinguish dialogue from sound effects.

That’s where soundbars come in. These speakers connect to your TV and deliver high-quality audio. The right soundbar can make a big difference. Strong companies like Samsung, Sony, Sonos, and VIZIO are all available today from sellers like Amazon. This guide focuses on the offerings from VIZIO, a company that makes some of the best soundbars in the industry.

Whether you want to hear every last word of a TV show or you want the windows of your living room to rattle with on-screen explosions, a VIZIO soundbar can bring high-end audio to your TV.

VIZIO soundbars are available in dozens of models, each with different tech on board ranging from multiroom audio to Dolby Atmos. It pays to know ahead of time what you do and don’t need.

Flat screen TV and soundbar mounted on wall
Don’t forget to turn down your TV’s built-in audio once you’ve set up your soundbar. It will take over all your TV’s audio duties, but you do have to remember to let your TV know that. Use your TV remote to set the volume to zero so it is the only speaker playing back audio.

Key considerations

Are you into surround sound?

Most movies and many TV shows feature surround sound multichannel audio tracks that immerse you in the experience by placing sound all around you.

If you’re a fan of surround sound, you’ll want to go beyond traditional TV speakers by getting a VIZIO soundbar with virtual surround. This technology uses multiple speakers to create an exquisite audio experience, bouncing sound off your walls and making it feel like it’s coming from different directions. If that’s not your thing, save some money and go with a two-channel audio soundbar.

Do you have room for a subwoofer?

Many soundbars include a subwoofer to help bring in the low end of your television’s soundtracks. Woofers can make a huge difference in making audio sound more realistic, but they’re typically pretty bulky, so not everyone has room for one. We recommend getting one with a subwoofer if you have room for both.

Will you use your soundbar to listen to music?

Many VIZIO soundbars can connect with your smartphone to stream music, which can be an easy way to make your favorite tunes sound great. If you’re in the market for a soundbar that can connect to your phone’s audio as well as your TV’s audio, get one that supports Bluetooth or WiFi.

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Expert Tip
Many soundbars include surround speakers that need to be wired to the subwoofer. Most consumers buy these products so they don’t have to deal with the wires of a full-blown surround sound system, so wired rear speakers can be a tough sell even though they add a lot to the audio experience.
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VIZIO soundbar features

Google Assistant compatibility

If you’ve got a Google Home device, you can use it to control some VIZIO soundbars. If you’re into the convenience of voice commands, or you just want a soundbar you can activate by saying, “Hey Google,” look for one with Google Assistant support.

WiFi

Some VIZIO soundbars have embedded WiFi, so they can bring new functionalities like Chromecast audio or so they can work with VIZIO’s custom app. If you’re into streaming music from your phone, grab one that’s got built-in WiFi.

Dolby Atmos support

Dolby Atmos is the latest and greatest surround sound format that creates a sound stage based on the layout and size of your TV room. It can make anything from quiet dialogue to intense thunderstorms sound incredibly realistic. If you want to hear your TV shows and movies in the most lifelike audio available, get a soundbar that supports Dolby Atmos.

Experiment with subwoofer placement. Subwoofer audio is “directionless,” which some people take to mean you can place it anywhere in the living room., This isn’t exactly true. While it’s hard to tell where a subwoofer is with your eyes closed, placement still matters. As always, trust your ears over any advice you get.

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VIZIO soundbar prices

Most VIZIO soundbars are fairly affordable and cost between $50 and $400.

Inexpensive

VIZIO’s entry-level soundbars cost between $50 and $130.

In this price range, you’ll find a lot of small two-channel options and a few that include a subwoofer. If you’re looking for something for a dorm room or apartment or for use with a secondary TV, you’ll find a good match for around $100. If you’re buying for a larger space, plan on spending a little more.

Mid-range

The best buys often cost between $100 and $220.

If you’re looking for a soundbar for your main TV or one that’s got some or all of the bells and whistles — such as a wireless subwoofer, Bluetooth, or compatibility with Google Assistant — this is the price range to keep in mind.

Expensive

VIZIO’s best soundbars cost between $220 and $400.

Spending this much money can be a tough proposition because it’s roughly the cost of a basic surround sound system with multiple speakers. If you’re looking for something that’s big and loud and includes features like support for Dolby Atmos or built-in WiFi, you’ll need to consider the most expensive options, which still offer better values than other brands.

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Expert Tip
Some soundbars have LED displays with information such as the audio format being played. Others include a single light so you can tell when it’s on. Spend some time thinking about your ideal setup. Some users find displays distracting; others like the useful details they provide.
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Tips

  • Get a soundbar that supports multiroom audio. This is the best buy if you enjoy playing music throughout your home. Multiroom audio was a niche feature that’s quickly becoming a must-have. Some work as Chromecasts, meaning you can use Google’s Chromecast app on your smartphone to stream directly to your soundbar. And if you have multiple Chromecast devices, you can play your music through all of them simultaneously.
  • Determine how you’ll be connecting your soundbar to your TV. Do this before you set anything up. VIZIO soundbars can connect to your TV using HDMI or a standard optical cable. Think about which you want to use ahead of time, keeping in mind that you may need to buy additional cables.
  • Drill into the studs. If you’re mounting your soundbar to the wall, make sure to drill into the studs. These are pretty heavy and require a lot of support to stay up, so drilling into drywall won’t cut it. Save yourself a headache and mount to the studs!
Living room with TV and soundbar on the wall
Remember that everything needs to be plugged into a power outlet. Soundbar pictures often hide an important detail: the plug. While it makes sense that you’ll need to power your soundbar, a power outlet is something to remember in your planning. If you have a subwoofer, you’ll need to plug that in, too.

FAQ

Q. How loud do VIZIO soundbars get?

A. It depends. Most can produce around 100 decibels (dB).

Soundbars with multiple built-in speakers (like those that support Dolby Atmos) can get louder than smaller units with only two speakers. The bottom line: these soundbars can get loud enough for just about any living room or viewing space.

Q. Can I use a VIZIO soundbar with my universal remote?

A. Maybe. Most universal remotes work by using infrared (IR) signals, but not all soundbars work with IR-based remotes. Instead, they accept commands over WiFi, so you can use an app as a remote control.

If you want to use a universal remote with a VIZIO soundbar, make sure the one you buy accepts IR commands, or check your remote’s documentation to see if it can send commands over WiFi (some high-end universal remotes can).

Q. What are the differences between the Dolby Digital and DTS audio formats?

A. Dolby Digital and Digital Theater Sound (DTS) are two of the most common digital surround sound formats available, developed by competing companies. Dolby Digital audio is the more popular — your cable TV set-top box and streaming box likely use it as a default.

DTS audio is more commonly found on DVDs and Blu-rays. Both Dolby Digital and DTS have advanced versions (including Dolby Atmos and DTS:X). If you’re a casual TV watcher, something that supports Dolby Digital would be more than suitable. If you’re a movie buff, look for one that supports DTS.

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