Bang & Olufsen Beosound Stage Soundbar Review

Tested using Methodology v0.8
Reviewed Oct 09, 2020 at 09:54 am
Bang & Olufsen Beosound Stage Picture
7.2
Mixed Usage
7.6
Dialogue/TV Shows
7.1
Music
6.9
Movies
Channels
3.0

The Bang & Olufsen Beosound Stage is a high-end 3.0 setup. This unique soundbar has a premium build and can be reoriented to sit upward on your table or face outwards when wall-mounted. It has a slightly boxy sound profile right out-of-the-box that lacks low-bass. However, its robust companion app offers a graphic EQ and presets so you can customize its sound. It also supports Dolby Atmos, although it has to downmix into stereo to play it. Depending on the bar's orientation, your mixes can seem a little restrained, and it doesn't have a room correction feature to help improve its sound. On the upside, it has a lot of physical inputs and wireless connectivity options. If you're looking for a setup that blends high-end style with versatile and customizable performance, this is worth considering.

Our Verdict

7.2 Mixed Usage

The Bang & Olufsen Beosound Stage is decent for mixed use. It has a slightly boxy sound profile that lacks a bit of low-bass, which can affect thumpy genres like EDM or action-packed movies. However, its companion app comes with a graphic EQ and presets so that you can tweak its sound to your liking. It can reproduce voices in your favorite TV shows clearly and accurately. This soundbar supports Dolby Atmos, but it has to downmix into stereo to play it. Still, it has a wide variety of physical inputs and wireless connectivity options.

Pros
  • Graphic EQ and presets.
  • Outstanding wireless connectivity options.
  • Supports Dolby Atmos.
Cons
  • No room correction.
  • Struggles to reproduce low-bass.
  • Wide bar.
7.6 Dialogue/TV Shows

The Bang & Olufsen Beosound Stage is good for dialogue and TV shows. It has a dedicated center channel that can produce clear and accurate dialogue. One of its EQ presets also acts as a dialogue enhancement feature, which can help further improve vocal quality. Thanks to its outstanding wireless connectivity options, you can stream podcasts and audiobooks to the bar using Bluetooth, and Wi-Fi as well as more OS-specific technologies like Apple AirPlay.

Pros
  • Outstanding wireless connectivity options.
  • Dialogue enhancement and auto-volume/night mode feature available.
Cons
  • Wide bar.
7.1 Music

The Bang & Olufsen Beosound Stage is decent for music. While its out-of-the-box sound profile is a bit boxy and lacking low-bass, its companion app offers a graphic EQ and presets to help you tweak its sound. It can also get loud enough to fill a large or crowded room, and there are minimal amounts of thumping and compression artifacts at max volume.

Pros
  • Graphic EQ and presets.
  • Can get loud.
  • Outstanding wireless connectivity options.
Cons
  • No room correction.
  • Struggles to reproduce low-bass.
  • Wide bar.
6.9 Movies

The Bang & Olufsen Beosound Stage is alright for movies. It has a slightly boxy sound profile and it struggles to produce a deep, thumpy bass, which can affect sound effects in your favorite action flicks. Luckily, it comes with a graphic EQ and presets so you can find the sound that best works for your needs. It supports Dolby Atmos, but it has to downmix surround content into stereo to play it. It can also get loud, with minor amounts of thumping and compression artifacts at max volume.

Pros
  • Graphic EQ and presets.
  • Can get loud.
  • Supports Dolby Atmos.
Cons
  • No room correction.
  • Struggles to reproduce low-bass.
  • Wide bar.
  • 7.2 Mixed Usage
  • 7.6 Dialogue/TV Shows
  • 7.1 Music
  • 6.9 Movies

Test Results

perceptual testing image
Market Context
Market Context
Market Context

The Bang & Olufsen Beosound Stage is a high-end 3.0 setup from 2020. It's the manufacturer's first soundbar, and its premium, minimalist design is similar in look and feel to their other audio products. It uses a unique speaker arrangement so that it can be wall-mounted or placed on a table, and doesn't have a subwoofer. The Beosound Stage competes with the Sonos Beam, the Sonos Playbar, and the LG GX Soundbar.

Design
Design
Style - Bar

The Bang & Olufsen Beosound Stage has a very sleek, minimalist look. Our test unit has a silver aluminum casing around its sides and it sits on a black plastic base. Its drivers are covered with a tight black fabric that can get dusty or dirty. If you prefer your soundbar to better match your decor, it comes in a few different color variations that look similarly stylish.

Design
Style - Subwoofer

This setup doesn't have a subwoofer.

Design
Style - Satellites

The Bang & Olufsen Beosound Stage doesn't have satellites.

Design
Dimensions - Bar
Bar Width 43.3" (110.0 cm)
Bar Height 3.0" (7.5 cm)
Bar Depth 6.8" (17.2 cm)

The Bang & Olufsen Beosound Stage is very large. It most likely won't fit between the legs of a 55" TV. On the upside, it shouldn't obstruct the screen, unless your TV sits flush to the table.

Design
Dimensions - Subwoofer
Sub Width N/A
Sub Height N/A
Sub Depth N/A

This setup doesn't have a subwoofer.

Design
Dimensions - Satellites
Sat Width N/A
Sat Height N/A
Sat Depth N/A

There are no satellites in the Bang & Olufsen Beosound Stage's setup.

Design
Back - Bar
Bar Mounting Type
Proprietary

The back of this soundbar has one opening for the inputs as well as the power cable. The manufacturer includes two round collars with grooves so that you can slide and align them with the rear openings of the bar to wall-mount them. However, you need to purchase wall-appropriate screws for the collars separately.

Design
Back - Subwoofer
Enclosure
N/A

There's no subwoofer in this setup.

Design
Back - Satellites
Sat Mounting Type
N/A

There are no satellites in the Bang & Olufsen Beosound Stage's setup.

8.0
Design
Build Quality

This soundbar has a great build quality. While the bar has a plastic base, there's thick aluminum casing covering its top sides. The speakers are protected by a tight fabric, but it's prone to collecting dust or ripping. You can also use this bar in two different orientations.

Design
In The Box
HDMI Cable Length
5.0 ft (1.5 m)
Digital Optical Cable Length
N/A

  • Safety document
  • Power cable
  • HDMI cable
  • 2x Wall-mount collars
  • 2x Felt pads
  • 2x Cable guide
  • Wall template

Sound
6.8
Sound
Stereo Frequency Response
ST Slope
-0.83
ST Std. Err.
2.94 dB
Low-Frequency Extension
51.9 Hz
High-Frequency Extension
13.7 kHz

The Bang & Olufsen Beosound Stage's stereo frequency response is alright. When you set up this soundbar using the app, you have to confirm the bar's orientation to ensure an optimal setting. If you have the bar flat on the table, audio sounds more restrained than when wall-mounted. However, as it doesn't have a subwoofer, it struggles to produce deep thump and rumbles. While it also sounds a bit boxy overall, its mid-range is fairly neutral, which is well-suited for vocal-centric content.

Sound
Stereo Raw Frequency Response
7.5
Sound
Stereo Soundstage
Crosstalk Error
3.14 dB

The Bang & Olufsen Beosound Stage's stereo soundstage is good. The soundstage sounds a little bit wider than the bar itself, but the bar doesn't do any tricks to make it wider. Its focus is good, and objects seem to come from accurate, pinpoint locations rather than a generalized area.

7.7
Sound
Stereo Dynamics
ST SPL @ Max Volume
92.4 dB SPL
ST DRC @ Max Volume
1.52 dB

This soundbar has good stereo dynamics. It can get loud, and there are minimal compression artifacts at max volume, particularly in the bass-range. However, this shouldn't be too noticeable to most listeners.

7.2
Sound
Stereo Total Harmonic Distortion
ST Weighted THD @ 80
0.52
ST Weighted THD @ Max Volume
3.36

The Bang & Olufsen Beosound Stage's total harmonic distortion performance is decent. Distortion falls within good limits at a normal listening volume, which results in clear and pure sound. However, there's a bit of a jump in distortion at max volume. It can be hard to hear with real-life content, though.

8.8
Sound
Center
C Localization
Discrete
C Slope
0.03
C Std. Err.
2.98 dB
C SPL @ Max Volume
88.6 dB SPL
C Weighted THD @ 80
0.15
C Weighted THD @ Max Volume
0.72

The Bang & Olufsen Beosound Stage is a 3.0 setup with an excellent center channel performance. Its dedicated center speaker produces clear and accurate vocal content in movies or TV shows.

4.4
Sound
Surrounds
Sr Localization
Stereo (Downmix)
Rears
No
Sr Slope
-0.83
Sr Std. Err.
2.94 dB
Sr SPL @ Max Volume
92.3 dB SPL
Sr Weighted THD @ 80
0.40
Sr Weighted THD @ Max Volume
3.33

The Bang & Olufsen Beosound Stage has a poor surround performance. As a 3.0 setup, it downmixes surround content into stereo, which doesn't produce the most accurate or clear representation of surround objects in the soundstage. It doesn't sound very immersive as these objects are perceived as coming from in front, rather than from the sides or behind you.

6.7
Sound
Height (Atmos)
H Localization
Phantom (Up Firing, Bar)
H Slope
-0.78
H Std. Err.
2.93 dB
H SPL @ Max Volume
89.3 dB SPL
H Weighted THD @ 80
2.46
H Weighted THD @ Max Volume
1.86

The Bang & Olufsen Beosound Stage has an okay height performance. When placed on a table, it uses its up-firing speakers on the bar to bounce sound off of your ceiling to give you the impression of height. However, the localization of objects sounds diffused and it won't sound as real as discrete localization produced by down-firing speakers. If you wall-mount this soundbar, it may shift its localization to phantom, front-firing speakers, due to the orientation.

6.2
Sound
Sound Enhancement Features
Room Correction
No
Dialogue Enhancement
Yes
Auto-Volume/Night Mode
Yes
Subwoofer Level Adjustment
N/A
Bass Adjustment
Yes
Treble Adjustment
Yes
EQ
Graphic + Presets
Surround Level Adjustment
No
Rear Level Adjustment
N/A
Height Level Adjustment
No
Virtual Surround
Yes

This soundbar has mediocre sound enhancement features. It has five EQ presets: 'TV' which doubles as a dialogue enhancement feature, 'Music', 'Movie', 'Night Listening' (which is an auto-volume/night mode), and 'None'. There's also a virtual surround feature called 'Virtualize', but we don't currently test this feature. There's also a graphic EQ so you can fine-tune its sound. However, it lacks a room correction feature to automatically calibrate itself to the room it's placed in.

Connectivity
Connectivity
Physical Inputs - Bar
Optical Audio In
No
HDMI ARC
1 (shared)
HDMI Out
1 (shared)
Full HDMI In
1
Analog Audio In 3.5mm (Aux)
1
USB for Files
No
Ethernet
2

This soundbar has a few physical inputs. It has two Ethernet ports: one is for an ethernet connection and the other is for a VLAN connection mainly for LG C9 Series TVs. Using the VLAN connection gives you integrated control of your compatible TV using the Beoremote One. There's also an AUX port if you want to listen to audio from older devices.

8.0
Connectivity
Audio Format Support - ARC
eARC
Yes
Dolby Atmos
Yes
Dolby Digital
Yes
Dolby Digital Plus
Yes
DTS
No
DTS:X (eARC only)
No
Dolby TrueHD (eARC only)
Yes
DTS-HD MA (eARC only)
No
5.1 PCM (eARC only)
No

The Bang & Olufsen Beosound Stage has an ARC port that supports most audio formats. Although it supports eARC, it only supports Dolby formats and not DTS. Its lack of a dedicated subwoofer also seems to affect its ability to play 5.1 PCM files due to the missing channel.

7.9
Connectivity
Audio Format Support - Full HDMI In
Dolby Atmos
Yes
DTS:X
No
Dolby Digital
Yes
Dolby Digital Plus
Yes
DTS
No
Dolby TrueHD
Yes
DTS-HD MA
No
5.1 PCM
No

This soundbar has good support via its Full HDMI In port. While it supports Dolby content like Dolby Atmos, it can't play DTS. Its lack of a dedicated subwoofer also seems to affect its ability to play 5.1 PCM files due to the missing channel.

0
Connectivity
Audio Format Support - Optical
Dolby Digital
No
DTS
No

The Bang & Olufsen Beosound Stage doesn't have an Optical In port.

10
Connectivity
Wireless Playback
Bluetooth
Yes
Wi-Fi
Yes
Chromecast built-in
Yes
Apple AirPlay
Yes

The Bang & Olufsen Beosound Stage has outstanding wireless playback connectivity. You can stream audio to it using a variety of different connectivity options including Bluetooth and Wi-Fi. You can also use Chromecast built-in and Apple AirPlay 2, which is handy if you want to stream audio from your smartphone.

Connectivity
Other Input Specifications
4k @ 60 Hz Passthrough
Yes
4k @ 60 Hz @ 10 bit Passthrough
Yes
4k @ 60 Hz @ 4:4:4 Passthrough
Yes
HDR10 Passthrough
Yes

The Bang & Olufsen Beosound Stage can passthrough the highest quality signals, and when connected between your PC and TV, text looks clear and crisp on your screen.

Connectivity
Connectivity - Subwoofer
Sub Wireless
N/A

This soundbar doesn't have a subwoofer.

Connectivity
Connectivity - Satellites
Sat Wireless
N/A

The Bang & Olufsen Beosound Stage doesn't have any satellites.

Additional Features
Additional Features
Interface
Display
Yes

The interface consists of two lights located on the right side of the soundbar's base. The power light is white. The second light indicates your wireless connectivity status, and changes color depending on the wireless input.

Additional Features
Bar Controls

This bar has four touch-sensitive controls. You can adjust the volume, skip tracks forward and backward, play or pause, and use Bluetooth. There's also two physical buttons in the middle of the bar that allow the bar to go into standby mode or reset it back to factory settings.

Additional Features
Remote
Universal Remote
No

This soundbar doesn't have a remote.

Additional Features
App
App Name Bang & Olufsen
iOS Yes
Android Yes
Acts as the Remote
Yes
Controls Soundbar's Settings
All
Casts Device Files
Audio Files Only

This soundbar uses the Bang & Olufsen app as its controller. In order to use the app, you have to set it up with the Google Home app first. Once you've done this, you get access to all of its controls. You can select EQ presets or use its graphic EQ, toggle upmixing from two channels to three, activate a surround effect, and even control the dynamics of your signal. Using this app, you can also enable the in-app remote for an LG C9 Series TV.

Additional Features
Other Features
Power Saving
No
HDMI CEC (TV Remote Control)
Yes

When you turn off the soundbar, it goes into standby mode. If you want to wake it up, you can send a file for it to play. You can also use your TV remote to control the bar's volume, mute audio, and turn it on/standby.

Differences Between Sizes and Variants

The Bang & Olufsen Beosound Stage comes in a variety of different colors: natural/black, bronze-tone/warm taupe, anthracite (which is a limited edition color), and smoked oak/gray. We tested the natural/black model, but we expect the other variants to perform similarly.

If you come across a different variant, let us know in the discussion section below so that we can update our review.

Compared to other soundbars

The Bang & Olufsen Beosound Stage is a premium 3.0 setup from 2020. This very well-built soundbar comes in a couple of different color variants to better match your home's decor. Thanks to its companion app, you can reconfigure its sound to better suit its orientation, whether you have it sitting on your table or wall-mounted. Unfortunately, it doesn't have a subwoofer, so it lacks low-bass. While it supports Dolby Atmos content, but it also has to downmix it into stereo to play it. Check out our recommendations for the best soundbars, the best soundbars for dialogue, and the best soundbars for music.

Sonos Arc

The Bang & Olufsen Beosound Stage and the Sonos Arc are soundbars with different setups but the Bang & Olufsen is better for dialogue and TV shows. While the Bang & Olufsen is a 3.0 setup with a more bass-heavy sound, it has a graphic EQ and presets so you can customize it to your liking. It has more physical inputs including a Full HDMI In port, and it has outstanding wireless playback options. However, the Sonos is a 5.0.2 setup with side-firing speakers, which helps significantly improve its surround performance in contrast to the Bang & Olufsen, which downmixes this content into stereo. It also has a better height performance and has a room correction feature.

Bose Soundbar 700

The Bose Soundbar 700 is a better 3.0 setup than the Bang & Olufsen Beosound Stage. The Bose has a better build quality, its sound profile is more neutral, and it offers a room correction feature. However, the Bang & Olufsen supports Dolby Atmos, it has a graphic EQ, and it has a full array of physical inputs. It also has outstanding wireless playback options.

Sonos Beam

The Sonos Beam and the Bang & Olufsen Beosound Stage are two high-end 3.0 setups with somewhat different strengths. The Bang & Olufsen can produce more bass, it supports Dolby Atmos, and it has a graphic EQ with presets. It also offers more connectivity options and supports more audio formats. The Sonos has a more neutral sound profile and it has a room correction feature. Some users may especially prefer its small size, which can be upgraded later down the line with a separate subwoofer or satellites.

Sonos Playbar

The Bang & Olufsen Beosound Stage is a better 3.0 setup for movies than the Sonos Playbar. The Bang & Olufsen supports Dolby Atmos and has more physical inputs that support a wider array of audio formats. It also has outstanding wireless playback options and supports 4k passthrough. However, the Sonos has a better surround performance and offers a room correction feature.

LG GX Soundbar

The LG GX Soundbar is a better overall soundbar than the Bang & Olufsen Beosound Stage. The LG is a 3.1 setup that's designed for use with LG's OLED wallpaper TVs. It has a better surround performance and offers full audio format support for each of its physical inputs. However, the Bang & Olufsen feels better built and has two Ethernet ports, one of which is designed to work with LG's C9 Series TVs. While it doesn't have full audio format support via any of its physical inputs, it has outstanding wireless playback options. Its center and height channels also significantly outperform the LG.

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