Have you decided to upgrade your sound options for your home entertainment system recently? If you’ve chosen a soundbar, you’ve made a good choice. They’re an affordable and practical way to get much better quality sound than simply sticking with the speakers that came with your TV. While they might not have the same high-end audio as an expensive surround sound system, they’re much cheaper and more easy to work with. Soundbars are actually relatively easy to install, but if you want to know a bit more about how to connect your soundbar and get it working, you’re in the right place. We’re going to look at everything you need to know so that you can get listening in minutes.
Soundbars have a number of advantages over other sound systems. They’re better quality than most built-in speakers that come with TV sets. They’re also easier to install, more practical, lighter and cheaper than surround sound systems. But how do you set them up? Let’s have a look…
How to connect a soundbar to a TV
Purchase the right soundbar
Before you start connecting your soundbar to your TV, you need to make sure you’ve bought a good quality one. Check some reviews online. As with many other things these days, that’s a great place to start and you might be able to find the right unit for you. Make sure you check the actual review text for relevant information rather than just going by the overall ratings.
If you want to pop into your local tech or entertainment store you’ll be able to get a feel for a few different soundbars. Try picking them up and making a note of which ones would work well in your room. You don’t have to buy them here, as they could be much more expensive. Go back home and check which you can find cheaper online and then order it for delivery. It should only take a day or two to arrive from the right supplier, and you might save a lot compared to buying in-store.
Unbox is and check the instructions
Your first step with a new soundbar is to unbox it and check the instructions. This article is a good guide on how to set up soundbars in general, but your specific one might have its own instructions or specific directions that you need to pay attention to. Perhaps you bought your soundbar second hand or found it in your new apartment, and you don’t have any instructions? Keep reading this article to find out what to do…
How to connect your soundbar
These days, the easiest way to connect a soundbar to your TV is with an HDMI cable. HDMI cables are relatively new, but they can carry a lot of high-quality information and they’re the best for this job if you have the option. Your soundbar might even come with its own HDMI cable. Or you could have one spare already. Simply find the output and put it into the HDMI slot on your TV. It should be on the back and be relatively easy to find.
But what if you’ve got an old soundbar without HDMI, or an old TV? Or maybe you’ve already used up the HDMI slots on your TV for other peripherals? If that’s the case, there should be a few other options on your soundbar to connect it to your TV. One of them is digital optical or digital coaxial. You could also use more traditional sound connectivity options like 3.5mm line out or RCA, as well as a headphone jack. Check what output options your soundbar has available and what your TV can receive, then find or buy the right cable and simply connect them together.
How to set up your soundbar
Your soundbar should be set in front of your TV, or underneath it. For best results, soundbars are designed to be under a TV that you watch head-on, in the middle of a room rather than a corner. You could fix the soundbar to the wall with an additional bracket, but it works well on a flat surface.
You will then need to find somewhere to put the subwoofer. Some of the better soundbars these days have their own built-in subwoofers but not all of them do. If you have an external subwoofer it will need to be connected to the soundbar and placed nearby the system, but not too close to the wall as it could cause distracting vibrations. You can connect some subwoofers wirelessly these days, but others require a cable.
The height of your soundbar should be roughly within a foot of your ear level when you’re sitting. This will provide you with the best quality sound. Keep the soundbar centered in the room for the best results. Have a look at the specific instructions that came with your unit to see what sort of distance it should be from where most people sit. Soundbars are ideally designed for smaller rooms, but this can vary a bit.
You might need to do a bit of trial and error to find the sweet spot for your soundbar. Soundbars are designed to bounce sound around the room with a number of little speakers to create a surround-sound effect. Your soundbar could work better if you have walls to either side of the soundbar and more soft furnishings in the room. Do not put the soundbar in a closed cabinet. This might seem like an obvious mistake to make, but you’d be surprised how many people make it.
Finally, make sure your TV is outputting to the right place to get the sound to your soundbar. Turn down the built-in sound on your TV set. Adjust the volumes and subwoofer levels of your soundbar to get the best results, and enjoy!