With your new OLED and QLED panels being increasingly thinner, the speakers built into the average TV’s enclosure can’t possibly do justice to movie soundtracks, let alone music playback.

Soundbars are an excellent compromise for smaller spaces where a surround-sound system might be too complicated.

Now consider this: for the price of a soundbar you can put in a pair of Kanto YU4 that allows us to physically separate the transducers so that they paint a stereo image far wider than any soundbar and its psychoacoustical audio handling could muster, easily offsetting any absence of faux-Dolby Atmos support. 

Don't buy a Soundbar if you like music

If you are looking for the Soundbar to serve double duty as a stereo music playback device, we should pause to consider its narrow width and poor separation of left and right. This leads to separation anxiety. Our brain needs physically separated left and right channels in order to triangulate the illusory location of instruments between loudspeakers playing back stereo content. On the Soundbar, this stereo separation is missing in action — and doubly noticeable when cutting over from more traditional hi-fi loudspeakers.

Physically separated loudspeakers do things that a soundbar cannot: they allow the illusion of stereo to breathe; to swing and dance between them. 

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