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Can You Use Any Soundbar On Any TV? Find Out Here!

Written By Nathan
Last Updated June 7, 2021

Is It Possible To Use a Sound Bar On Any TV?

If you are looking to kit your TV out with a new soundbar, then your probably wondering if one of these devices will work with any kind of TV, or if you have to have a specific model for them to work.

Luckily, soundbars are very versatile and can be connected to old and new TVs, no matter the model. This is thanks to the fact they have multiple ways to connect to a TV such as; HDMI, optical, HDMI e arc and Bluetooth/Wifi. 

HDMI and optical are some of the most popular ways to connect your soundbar to your TV, with HDMI being the preferred choice.

Our best rated affordable soundbars!

To help you understand how you can use your soundbar with your TV, we have listed out the common connection types below and how they work, as well as how to set up your soundbar properly if it's your first time using it.

Common Ways To Connect Your Sound Bar With Any TV

Now we know our soundbar can work with nearly any kind of TV, we have listed out a few of the common connection types below and how they work so as you can figure out which type of connection is right for you.

HDMI

Using an HDMI cable is one of the most preferred ways to connect a soundbar to your TV, this is because it maintains the quality of the audio being transmitted.

This cable transfers audio and video from one source to another, which in this case is audio. You can connect your soundbar easily to your TV via HDMI by using the HDMI out port on the TV to the HDMI in port on your soundbar.

You should ensure that the HDMI port on your TV is an HDMI arc type otherwise audio will not be transferred. Some newer TV's may also have an HDMI e arc port which does the same job except does not compress the audio and make sure it's perfectly in sync, making it the best choice for Dolby Atmos sound.

We have listed out a few benefits of using HDMI to connect your soundbar below.

  • Only one cable needed.
  • Highest quality sound.
  • Widely is available.

In terms of what an HDMI cable can connect, it supports; Dolby digital/atmos, digital theatre and HD audio.

Optical Cable

If you find that your TV does not have an HDMI port, then you will need to connect your soundbar using an optical cable.

This type of cable supports audio-only and is connected to your TV via one end and the other in the soundbar. It then uses its fibre-optic line to transmit audio signals to your soundbar.

Using an optical cable to connect your soundbar to your TV is the next best option, however, does produce a lower quality sound than HDMI.

We've put together some benefits of using an optical cable below.

  • Only for audio.
  • Easy to find.
  • Cheap.
  • Better quality audio than other options (apart from HDMI).

Bluetooth

If your TV and soundbar support it, using Bluetooth to connect your soundbar to your TV is one of the simplest ways out there, it doesn't lose out on audio quality too and means you don't have to worry about any wires getting in the way.

Wifi likewise works in a similar way to Bluetooth as its a wireless connection, you just need to ensure your TV has it, as many of the older models don't.

How Do I Use My Sound Bar With Any TV?

Now you have determined the best way to connect your soundbar to your TV, you might be asking yourself how you need to set up your soundbar to hear the best audio quality.

We have listed out a few tips for setting up your soundbar below.

Placement

One of the first things you need to address when setting up your soundbar is the placement. It's best to place your soundbar directly under your TV on a flat surface, this could be on your TV's stand for example.

If your TV is a wall hanging model then you might want to put a bracket underneath your TV so your soundbar can sit there. Always try and ensure the soundbar is front-facing for maximum audio.

Connect Your Subwoofer

Next up you should connect your subwoofer to your soundbar. Some subwoofers may be wireless and others you might have to use a cable to connect.

You can even place your subwoofer in your TV stand too if you don't mind the vibrations, just don't place it directly against a wall as this could affect the sound quality.

Think About The Height & Centre

When finding a place for your soundbar you should consider what height it will be at, for the best audio this is within a foot of your ear, making wall mounted soundbars the best.

The soundbar should also be kept centre with an even distance each side for the best audio quality.

Find The Perfect Spot

The best distance for your soundbar will depend on the specific model, you will want to find a spot where the audio is still powerful and has not become poorer due to the distance.

Some soundbars that have a surround sound will be able to be placed further away, this also depends on the maximum power of the device.

How To Connect Your Sound Bar To Your TV Via HDMI

After placing your soundbar in the best position possible, it's time to connect it up to your TV.

For this method, we will choose HDMI as this is the highest quality way of transmitting audio from your TV to your soundbar and also the most common way.

We have put together a step by step guide for connection via HDMI below.

  • Step one - One of the first things you should do when connecting your soundbar to your TV is changing the external audio output on your TV. You will find this option on your TV's menu and you should choose the output sound as external.
  • Step two - Check the HDMI connection is the same name as your model listed and enable arc mode on your TV so as you can use your remote to adjust the volume level.
  • Step three - Now your soundbar is connected, you should adjust the subwoofer so as it not overpowering the audio coming from the soundbar, you may also need to play around with the audio settings of your soundbar to get the best output.
  • Step four - Find the best mode for your soundbar by trying out different sound effects such as 'surround sound' or 3D. Some models may also have the option to make the dialogue stand out on the audio which can be great for films.

Can I Play Music To a Sound Bar When Connected To a TV?

Playing music with your soundbar is relatively easy as long as it has connections such as a 3.5mm jack, USB or Bluetooth.

Most soundbars should have a wireless Bluetooth connection which is the easiest way to stream music with high-quality, some may also use wifi and allow you to connect multiple speakers in each room of your house.

Frequently Asked Questions About Using a Sound Bar With Different TV's

Should my soundbar match the brand of my TV?

No this is not necessary, you can typically use any kind of soundbar with a TV as long as it has an HDMI connection or an optical cable connection.

The only benefit you may get from using the same brand soundbar such as Samsung and Samsung might be easier pairing.

Why am I not hearing sound after connecting my soundbar to my TV?

If you are not hearing sound after connecting the bar to your TV the output source on your TV might not be selected or the HDMI cable could be loose.

Last Words

To conclude, you can use a soundbar with any kind of TV as long it has either HDMI or an optical cable port.

Always go for an HDMI connection when possible as this offers the highest sound quality output without any compression.

Nathan

My name is Nathan Walters and I used to be a Mystery Shopper in my previous life. I love pizza, my 3 cats and fine wines! I also have a strange yet satisfying addiction to Netflix binges :) I am the Director of Best Reviews. I'm blessed to have a team of professionals in most fields who review and test products. Feel free to send me a message using the contact page!
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