Tired of the unbalanced or shallow sound coming from your television when watching your favorite action movie? Are you jealous of your best friend’s rich sound experience when you go over for a movie night? Look no further! Today you will not only learn what makes a soundbar great but where to find one that is affordable and comes with some serious quality for your dollars. Before we get to our list of best soundbars for under $200, let’s talk about some important factors to think about before rushing into your local Best Buy store.
When purchasing a soundbar for your television or monitor on a budget, you have to consider that there are hundreds of virtually unknown companies out there that are pedaling low-quality products for a small sticker price. The reality is that while you could purchase a better soundbar for around $100 if you are willing to double that price, you’re going to get a much better value that has a comparable performance to some of the higher priced brand names.
A $200 dollar budget will buy you a very decent soundbar with a great sound performance where a $100 product will get you something that is barely better than your tv’s built-in speakers. Additionally, a lot of products in the $200 price range offer Bluetooth connection. That’s right. A wireless product which is something much more appreciated when you already have a lot of cords and cables running between televisions, game consoles, and more.
One shouldn’t overlook the power rating when in the $100 – $200 price range. Some soundbars have as much as 300 watts of power just amping up that volume without any distortion interfering with your home movie watching experience. Couple this power with a decent subwoofer that many soundbars have included in their features, and the bass beats will not be shallow, but rich and reverberating. Still though, $200 and under for a soundbar can be a bit of a daunting mission without sacrificing some kind of sound quality. This is especially true since all soundbars are not made alike. Be prepared to do some research, test them in a store, and maybe take some pointers from our list below.
Overall performance for $200 soundbars and a few of those that cost even less is reasonable and not disappointing for the money spent. The majority of them come with almost uniform construction style and have an HDMI port in them as this is a standard feature in most televisions nowadays. You can also count on seeing a lot of Bluetooth or WiFi connectivity in many of the soundbars being offered on the market too.
Keeping all of this in mind when purchasing a budget-priced soundbar is important, and realistically you should be prepared to fall in love with a product close to the max price of your budget if you want good quality. It’s undeniable that soundbars are necessary because standard television speakers are not all that great due to the compact engineering of today’s televisions and monitors. The list below will give you the best options for $200 or less by focusing on sound quality, and the fact that they are reliable. Sometimes, those are the only features you need in a soundbar, and you will have a better experience than a more costly model.
Let’s get started and find that perfect $200 soundbar!
- High-Powered Sound Bar Surround Sound Speaker System
- Wi-Fi Connectivity: Built-in Wi-Fi Receives Audio Signal
- Full Range Stereo Sound Reproduction
- Mac & PC Compatible
Overall rating: 3.7 out of 5
If you like theatrical sound, you’re going to like this sound bar a lot because it has a dual tweeter and a mid-woofer. It’s designed to be really simple to use and set-up, and it’s extremely compatible with most television brands and other smart devices like a tablet, smartphone, and even your laptop. One of the best compatibility features would include the built-in WiFi and Bluetooth connectivity options.
Sound-wise the bass is rich and deep which adds to the listening experience dramatically. This also includes its ability to have a stereo quality sound which is pretty impressive for such a budget-priced soundbar.
- 37-Inch 120 W (2.1 channels)
- Subwoofer: Wired 5.25″
- Bluetooth Connectivity enabled, Wall Mountable
- Inputs: USB, Bluetooth, TV Sound Connect, Optical
Overall rating: 4.1 out of 5
Built with a wired-in subwoofer, and designed with a simple connectivity scheme via Bluetooth, this soundbar is a hard one to beat for the low price and brand name attached to it. Samsung rarely disappoints with its accessory products, and their soundbar market has been no exception since their flat screen televisions are so popular.
When looking at the power and sound specs, you will see that it has a high-powered subwoofer that runs at 120W. This wattage was programmed to be shared evenly between the main soundbar and the subwoofer. This creates an immersive sound experience when listening because it recognizes and plays every type of sound or movie file format out there.
Even though this soundbar was designed by Samsung, it is compatible with multiple smart devices and is connected with the Samsung Audio Remote app to allow easier control of the soundbar’s myriad of features. Additionally, it can be mounted on a wall and has a USB port onboard to allow easy connection with other devices.
- Big sound–with deep bass–for a full-range listening experience
- Voice prompts talk you through Bluetooth pairing, so it’s super easy
- Kindly check User manual on Product Information for Troubleshooting steps
Overall rating: 4.4 out of 5
Bose is famous for its compact size speaker systems and this soundbar epitomizes this trend’s popularity and convenience. Those who purchase this product will enjoy the portability of its small size and that this doesn’t sacrifice any of the brand famous rich sound and deep bass performance.
It is also wireless and can be recharged via USB, so you can listen to music anywhere within its signal range. Bose also programmed a simplified voice prompt program to ease pairing up of devices, and a memory of the most recent connections so there isn’t any reconnection hassles. Of course, because it is rechargeable it uses a Li-ion battery that can hold a 10-hour charge depending on usage.
Bose’s soundbar for less than $200 is a great deal because even this brand’s lower-end product doesn’t sacrifice quality at all.
- 120 Total Watts
- Bluetooth Compatible for Wireless Streaming
- 4K Ultra HD Pass-Through
- 1 Optical, Analog and HDMI Input
- Includes HDMI Optical and Analog Cables
Overall rating: 3.5 out of 5
Yahama’s slim design makes it a very visually unobtrusive soundbar when it comes to your room’s decor and compliments slimmer television styles. It has a Bluetooth connection for streaming wirelessly and offers remote control via your favorite iOS or Android products. Remote control of features like sound adjustments, subwoofer volumes, input selection and more, can be controlled from across the room with your tablet or phone.
Some of the sound styles you can control include five surround sound settings. You have the typical sports, game, movie, television program and sports sound modes so your audio is suitable for the programming you are watching or listening to. Another amazing feature that Yamaha put into this soundbar is the ability to program your television’s remote control it too. Now, you can have a true universal remote experience if you wish.
- Sleek, Slim TV Soundbar
- Flexible Connectivity Option
- 3 Preprogrammed Listening Modes
- Full-Sized 40” TV Soundbar
Overall rating: 3.8 out of 5
If you are looking for a variety of connection options, this Bohm B2 soundbar might be for you since it offers optical, coaxial, USB, and more. It has a simplified audio port installation process by just having you plug directly into the output audio port on your tv.
It comes in a more slim style than other models and has a simple touch button to switch into a different sound mode. It currently only comes with three audio modes which are the tv, music, and a movie mode. Don’t let the smaller number of sound modes fool you as it can easily perform theatre-quality sound.
- Length & Power Output: 28-inch 60 W (2.1 channels) – ideal for 32-inch and larger TVs
- Subwoofer: Wired
- Connectivity: Bluetooth
- Wall Mountable: No; Remote Included: Yes
- Inputs: Digital coaxial in, Digital optical in, Subwoofer out, AUX in
Overall rating: 3.5 out of 5
Vizio is a well-known electronics brand that is affordable and gives a great performance. Like their televisions, the soundbar is also sleek and features a full range of drivers and a booming wireless subwoofer. The volume is loud and clear and offers a great value for the price.
When put to the test, the bass wasn’t overpowering so if you prefer a lot of deep bass, you might find this product disappointing. It tries to give a sense of bass undertones, and overall, it accomplishes this when watching movies. If bass is not a huge feature you are looking for, this is one of the best budget-friendly soundbars for under $200 out there right now.
- 2.1 Sound Bar System
- Wireless Subwoofer
- Streamline Design
- Premium Audio Technology
Overall rating: 3.8 out of 5
This soundbar is all about a seamless balance of sounds and tones. Philips created this with a focus on sound and not good looks. While it’s not the slimmest model out there, it makes up for it with all-around good sound quality and the wired subwoofer that comes with it, though even that is a bit awkward when trying to find a good place to install the combo.
Still, even with its bulkier construction, the power behind the sound is impressive, it has a lot of features for sound modes, and the price range is under a $200 budget limit.
- Connect and stream music easily with Bluetooth; Slot-in design
- Control your TV and sound bar with a single remote via HDMI ARC
- Music playback via USB
- 300W power, plus 2.1ch S-Force PRO Front Surround sound
Overall rating: 3.4 out of 5
Sony is known for innovation and features and their soundbar solution doesn’t disappoint. With a combined 300 watts of power, the subwoofer and soundbar speakers never struggle to put out a rich sound and deep bass performance. But Sony doesn’t stop here and adds in additional cool features like USB music playback, and additional sound modes like Voice or Night mode. These two additional modes enhance speaking voices and low sounds in the media you are listening to.
Its design is super-slim and can be mounted on a wall with ease since it is a Bluetooth designed soundbar. Sony also includes a way to control your sound bar with a remote using HDMI ARC (audio return channel). HDMI ARC is a better choice versus the standard optical because it can transmit higher-resolution sound that is on Blue-Ray. Optical can’t do this.
- Bluetooth 4.0
- Wired connection
- Remote control and buttons control
- 3D Surrounding Sound System
- Loud 105dB–6 Drivers
Overall rating: 4.2 out of 5
While not your typically shaped flat square soundbar, Wohome’s S9920 looks sharp and has easy to access features. It’s a whopping 40″ long and has four 15 watt speakers and two 10 watt tweeters. It also has 2 bass reflex tubes to help add a rich bass your favorite movies and music.
It connects via Bluetooth on any smart device and allows you to control the audio from them. In the box, it comes with a wall mounting kit, a 1-year warranty, and a 45-day money back guarantee. The only downside might be the fact the physical remote won’t sync up with your television so they won’t be on the same channel.
- Optical Digital Audio with Dolby Digital
- Wireless Bluetooth Streaming
- Dual Bass Port Design
- Experience virtual surround sound without the additional wires or speakers with Harman Display Surround
Overall rating: 4.0 out of 5
To finish up our list of the best soundbars for under $200, we finish with JBL brand’s Boost TV Soundbar. It’s compact. It’s wireless. You won’t need to add any additional speakers to it. That’s right, it’s all in there from the moment you hook it up to your tv. It has Dolby Digital and Harman Display surround the sound which is a gold standard for an amazing audio experience.
Like a few other soundbar options, this one allows you to dual connect, and it’s really easy to switch between the devices too. On top of that, even the bass has a dual port set-up. You just can’t go wrong here! But wait, there’s more.
JBL made this ultra-slim, so it travels well. Because it is Bluetooth, you can take it to a bbq at a friend’s house or simply take it up to your bedroom to enjoy movies in bed. This is a very good deal for the small price.
How Will You Choose?
Because of the ever-increasing slimmed downsizes of televisions, a soundbar is an unavoidable necessity since most televisions have sacrificed sound for a more convenient size. This makes your choice a big one because you don’t want to buy a soundbar that puts out a quality that you’ve already got with your tv.
Try to find a model which has sound modes that enhance speaking and isolate individual sounds as much as possible. A lot of soundbars that cost less than $200 offer a simulated surround sound to help enhance movie-watching, and some have a matching wireless subwoofer too.
Convenience is another deciding factor for many soundbar shoppers. Who wants the hassle of another two additional wires to add into the octopus-like nightmare already behind your television? This is why you should probably make a wireless and/or built-in Bluetooth connection option a high priority. Not only because it’s easy to set up, but you can use your smart devices as remote controls for it.
Placement of the soundbar should also be seriously evaluated as they come in all different shapes and sizes, wired or wireless, and might have an additional subwoofer that could be wired or wireless as well. If you are thinking you will just place it on the tv stand in front of your television, you best measure the space you have available before purchasing.
If you really want a model that mounts neatly on the wall under your tv, you definitely need to account for where the power or charging cord will be visible. This might require buying a special bracket to help allow for space to run the potential cords neatly to their power source. You might want to try to visualize it on your wall under your television with some painter’s tape outlining the position to make sure it will look proportional.
Of course, you might realize you don’t really need a subwoofer. Since it only creates the lower bass tones you hear in your movies and music, a lot of soundbars without a separate subwoofer still mimic the bass adequately. For a lot of consumers, the bass is key to their movie experience though. The majority of these soundbar and subwoofer combos are wireless, but if it does require a wired connection, re-examine the space you are working with.
With soundbars, comes the decision about the kind of connections you need to connect to your television. Almost all soundbars come with an optical connection, and the majority offer HDMI, but if you have an older tv set, you might need to pick out a model that has analog input ports. Check out what your options are before you buy, and research any adapters you might need to purchase in addition to the soundbar in order to be able to connect it.
Finally, don’t forget to figure out the kind of controller you want. Do you only want to adjust sound modes, volume control, and menu selection with your smartphone or tablet? Do you want a soundbar that can be added on to your television’s remote control? Can you live with having a separate remote control that only operates your new soundbar? Remote control options for soundbars can seem unimportant until you are tired and a song you don’t like comes on and you have to get up from your comfortable couch to manually change the track. Don’t take this option for granted and understand that the convenience of a remote control is important to your sound experience and enjoyment.
After sorting through all of these factors, you should be able to make a well-informed soundbar decision for your needs and $200 or less budget.