My requirements

I was using a SoundBlaster Roar  with my TV for 2.5 years. It is an exceptionally well designed and well performing speaker with very good audio reproduction. I highly recommend it to anyone looking for a portable speaker with budget to spend.

However, Roar is meant to be used as a portable device. The battery in my Roar finally died after 2.5 years of continues connection to power socket and battery replacement was hard to find. I was able to use laptop battery in it with some trickery but this is not a long term solution.

Since I was back in the market to buy speakers, I wanted to get something which is compact like my Roar because my living room is configured with a Roar in mind for the last 2.5 years. A soundbar was the most logical solution. I tried different brands such as LG, Samsung which lacked punching bass and support for very low frequencies and Bose Cinemate + Acoustimass which is excellent but also very very costly for my budget. I decided to buy a JBL SB250 after taking demo of many brands in their shop.

Product and real life usage

Box of JBL SB 250

Box of JBL SB 250

 

JBL SB 250

JBL SB 250 Soundbar

This soundbar is around 75% in length of my 42″ TV. To give good audio reproduction, JBL made the soundbar taller than other soundbars in this range due to which if you keep this soundbar on the table along with a TV, it will hide 10% bottom area of TV hence wall mounting your TV is recommended.

  1. This soundbar has 2 speakers with 40W RMS and 120W RMS Subwoofer. You can read full specs on their official website.
  2. Subwoofer connect over RF. You will need two power plugs. One for Soundbar and one for Subwoofer.
  3. This soundbar supports connection over Optical In, 3.5mm AUX cable input & Bluetooth.

Quality

Never before I have felt the windows in my living room shaking due to bass. Roar just did not have such powerful level of bass. Every chord is clear when listening to music. Dialog when watching movies are also crystal clear.

My favorite test video is Batman Vs Superman – Dawn of Justice Blu Ray rip with DTS Audio. The climax with battle with Doomsday has scenes with room thumping bass. During the punches in that scene, you can actually feel bass vibrating the room.

Batman Vs Superman - Dawn of Justice

Batman Vs Superman – Dawn of Justice

Avengers : Age of Ultron with DTS Audio

Avengers : Age of Ultron with DTS Audio

Even though this soundbar has only 2.1 channel audio, you can increase the sound stage by enabling “Virtual Surround” for  videos with multi-channel audio. For DTH TV, YouTube, Amazon prime or Netflix stick to Stereo mode as that is what those services provide.

Harman Audio enhances the low levels in volume. I recommend keeping it turned on and setting bass and volume with the bundled remote control as per your liking. After that, you control audio using your TV or Android TV box such as Zidoo X9S.