But these weren’t the only premium soundbars he debuted in Berlin. TCL also showed off the X937U, a 7.1.4 soundbar system that looks poised to steal some of Ark’s thunder. At around $800/€800/AU$1,200, or $100 less than the Sonos Arc, the X937U is a very powerful soundbar package for the price. The 7.1.4-channel system offers both Dolby Atmos and DTS:X processing and supports Dolby Vision passthrough on three HDMI ports (including one with eARC).
Last week’s IFA 2022 in Berlin was a literal showcase for high-quality, full-featured soundbars. Philips unveiled his powerful and stylish Fidelio FB1 ($899 / €899 / £1,316 AU), while Sennheiser unveiled his Ambeo Plus ($1,499 / £1,297) presented. A compact version of his regular Ambeo product (now renamed to his Ambeo Max). Based on technical data alone, and based on my subjective impressions after the demo at IFA, both models are clear contenders for our list of the best soundbars, alongside the impressive Sonos Arc.
Seen in the finish of the X937U soundbar is an attractive gray fabric cover that also applies to the surround speakers (TCL says they use “eco-friendly” materials). What is missing is the Ray-Danz acoustic lens design. This works in conjunction with the speaker drivers to expand the soundstage and create a more immersive effect without digital processing. As he sat listening to the X937U, he was impressed with the powerful and dynamic sound the system produced at TCL’s sprawling yet not overcrowded IFA booth. Reaching good volume levels is no problem with this soundbar.
In addition to connecting a TV, streaming box, or disc player to the X937U via HDMI, listeners can wirelessly stream high-definition music to the X937U using his DTS Play-Fi protocol. It also supports streaming via AirPlay, Chromecast and Spotify Connect and works with Alexa and OK Google voice commands. Unlike the Sonos Arc, the X937U comes with wireless surround (front- and up-firing speakers for Atmos) and a wireless subwoofer. Three two-way speakers are used for the left, center and right channels, and full-range speaker drivers with a total output of 1,020 watts are used for the remaining channels.
The high-ceilinged exhibition hall wasn’t the best environment for him to demonstrate Dolby Atmos, but he still experienced some immersion and certainly heard the all-round effect of his surround sound. Premium Soundbar: The (Sound) Wave of the Future. At IFA he meets his X937U soundbar from TCL Two days ago he attended Philips presentation of the new Fidelio FB1. An inexpensive entry-level product that has always been popular. The conclusion of the presentation was that audiences not only expect better sound from their TVs, but also fully immersive 7.1.4 Dolby Atmos sound.