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The 5 Best Soundbars Under $300 - Winter 2022 Reviews

Updated
Best Soundbars Under $300
128 Soundbars Tested
  • Store-bought soundbars; no cherry-picked units
  • Easily comparable results
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Learn more about our approach to product reviews here.

When shopping for a soundbar, it can be easy to feel overwhelmed by all the expensive options out there. Thankfully, you don't need to spend a fortune to find something that performs reasonably well. For less than $300, you can find a decent soundbar that meets your needs, whether you're watching the latest blockbusters with your friends and family or just listening to your favorite albums by yourself.

We've tested over 125 soundbars, and below you'll find the best soundbars under $300 to buy. See our recommendations for the best budget soundbars, the best soundbars under $200, and the best small soundbars.


  1. Best Soundbar Under $300: Vizio V Series V51-H6

    7.6
    Mixed Usage
    8.3
    Dialogue/TV Shows
    7.8
    Music
    7.0
    Movies
    Channels
    5.1

    The Vizio V Series V51-H6 is the best soundbar under $300 that we've tested. This versatile 5.1 setup has a very neutral sound profile out-of-the-box, so it's suitable for listening to lots of different types of audio content. There are even some EQ presets as well as bass and treble adjustments to help you customize its sound.

    This setup comes with a dedicated subwoofer and two satellite speakers, and it supports surround sound content like Dolby Digital. You can even use its dialogue enhancement feature to make voices in your TV shows and movies more clear and crisp. It's also Bluetooth-compatible, so you can wirelessly stream content from your mobile devices to the bar.

    Unfortunately, this soundbar doesn't support Dolby Atmos content, which might disappoint some movie fans. Also, the fabric on the bar and the satellites seems like it could rip or get dirty easily. That said, it still has a decent build quality overall, with plastic that feels solid and durable.

    See our review

  2. Best Customizable Soundbar Under $300: Samsung HW-A650

    7.3
    Mixed Usage
    8.0
    Dialogue/TV Shows
    7.6
    Music
    6.8
    Movies
    Channels
    3.1

    If you want a bar that lets you customize its sound, the best soundbar under $300 that we've tested is the Samsung HW-A650. This 3.1 setup comes with lots of sound customization features, including bass and treble adjustments, as well as a graphic EQ. You can also use its EQ presets to adjust its performance, including an 'Adaptive Sound Lite' mode that enhances dialogue in your audio.

    This well-built setup has a neutral, balanced sound profile out-of-the-box that makes it suitable for listening to lots of different types of audio content. It gets pretty loud, too, and there isn't a lot of compression when you play it at max volume. Also, it's Bluetooth-compatible, so you can wirelessly stream music and podcasts from your phone to the bar.

    Unfortunately, this soundbar can't reproduce a very extended low-bass, so you don't feel the low rumble in bass-heavy music. There's no Atmos support, and its surround sound performance is poor since it has to downmix this content into stereo to play it. That said, if you want an affordable setup with lots of customization features, it's a solid choice.

    See our review

  3. Best Soundbar Under $300 For Bass: Vizio V Series V21-H8

    7.0
    Mixed Usage
    7.7
    Dialogue/TV Shows
    7.4
    Music
    6.4
    Movies
    Channels
    2.1

    The best soundbar under $300 for bass is the Vizio V Series V21-H8. This 2.1 model comes with a dedicated subwoofer that reproduces a very extended low-bass, so you feel the deep thumps and rumbles in bass-heavy music and action-packed shows. It gets pretty loud, though there's a bit of compression at max volume.

    Out-of-the-box, it has a boomy, bass-heavy sound profile that adds a lot of thump and punch to your audio. If you prefer a different sound, there are some EQ presets and bass and treble adjustments available. It's also Bluetooth-compatible, so you can wirelessly play audio from your mobile devices on the bar.

    Unfortunately, it doesn't support Atmos content, and it has to downmix surround content into stereo to play it, which doesn't sound as immersive. It also lacks a more comprehensive graphic EQ for sound customization, which might disappoint some listeners. That said, if you love a boomy, bass-heavy sound, this soundbar's a solid choice.

    See our review

  4. Best Dolby Atmos Soundbar Under $300: TCL Alto 8i

    6.8
    Mixed Usage
    6.9
    Dialogue/TV Shows
    7.2
    Music
    6.6
    Movies
    Channels
    2.1

    If you want to watch Dolby Atmos content, the best soundbar under $300 that we've tested is the TCL Alto 8i. This 2.1 setup uses front-firing drivers built into the bar itself to create the illusion of height when you watch Atmos movies. Its soundstage is pretty wide, too, so you can feel more immersed in your audio.

    Its sound profile is fairly neutral, though slightly dark and boomy, but dialogue is still reproduced pretty clearly. There are also a couple of EQ presets to help you customize its sound, along with some bass and treble adjustments. If you're watching movies at night, you can even use the auto-volume mode to balance the volume level between different sound effects.

    Unfortunately, this standalone bar can't reproduce the low thump and rumble found in bass-heavy action scenes. Its performance with surround sound isn't very impressive, either, since it has to downmix it into stereo to play it. However, it's still an affordable option for users who want to watch Atmos movies.

    See our review

  5. Best Small Soundbar Under $300: Bose TV Speaker

    6.4
    Mixed Usage
    6.9
    Dialogue/TV Shows
    6.7
    Music
    5.8
    Movies
    Channels
    2.0

    The best soundbar under $300 with a small design that we've tested is the Bose TV Speaker. This compact 2.0 soundbar can easily fit into your existing setup, and it won't take up a lot of space underneath your TV. It also has a very premium design, with a sleek and stylish look.

    Out-of-the-box, this soundbar has a pretty neutral sound profile with a little extra boom in the bass, and it's suitable for listening to lots of different types of audio content. There's a bass adjustment feature to help add more punch to your music, and you can even use its dialogue enhancement mode to make voices more clear.

    Unfortunately, like many small soundbars, this setup doesn't get very loud, and there's some compression at its max volume. It also can't reproduce the deep, thumpy low-bass found in bass-heavy music and action-packed movies. However, if you're low on space, it's still a helpful upgrade over your existing TV speakers.

    See our review

Notable Mentions

  • Sony HT-X8500: The Sony HT-X8500 is a 2.1 setup with an integrated subwoofer and a decent overall performance, but it struggles to reproduce low-bass. See our review
  • TCL Alto 6+: The TCL Alto 6+ is a simple 2.1 setup that gets pretty loud, but it has a dark sound profile and few customization features. See our review
  • LG SN6Y: The LG SN6Y is a well-built 3.1 setup that offers a bass-heavy sound profile out-of-the-box and even comes with a few EQ presets for sound customization. That said, it lacks a full graphic EQ, and its surrounds performance isn't impressive. See our review
  • Klipsch Bar 48: The Klipsch Bar 48 is a 3.1 soundbar that lacks a bit of bass out-of-the-box, but you can use its bass and treble adjustments to create a more neutral sound profile if you prefer. See our review
  • Samsung HW-A550: The Samsung HW-A550 is a 2.1 soundbar with a neutral sound profile out-of-the-box. That said, it isn't as well-built as some of the other soundbars we've tested, and it lacks a discrete center channel. See our review

Recent Updates

  1. Jan 14, 2022: Replaced the Samsung HW-S60A with the Bose TV Speaker as 'Best Small' since the Samsung's price rose above $300. Added the Samsung HW-A650 as 'Best Customizable' and the TCL Alto 8i as 'Best For Atmos'.

  2. Nov 16, 2021: Replaced the 3.1 Samsung HW-A650 with the 5.1 Samsung HW-Q65T as 'Better-Built Alternative' since it has a better surrounds performance. Replaced the Bose TV Speaker with the Samsung HW-S60A as 'Best Small'. Added the Samsung HW-A650 to Notable Mentions.

  3. Sep 17, 2021: No changes to product picks after verifying their accuracy and availability.

  4. Jul 20, 2021: Added the Samsung HW-S60A and the Samsung HW-A550 to Notable Mentions.

  5. May 21, 2021: Replaced the Samsung HW-T550 with the better-built 3.1 Samsung HW-A650. Removed the Yamaha YAS-209 from Notable Mentions as it's over $300, and the Bose Solo 5 as it's not widely available. Added the Klipsch Bar 48 and the Samsung HW-T550 to Notable Mentions.

All Reviews

Our recommendations above are what we think are currently the best soundbars under $300 for most people to buy. We factor in the price (a cheaper soundbar wins over a pricier one if the difference isn't worth it), feedback from our visitors, and availability (no soundbars that are difficult to find or almost out of stock everywhere).

If you would like to choose for yourself, here's the list of all our reviews of soundbars under $300. Be careful not to get caught up in the details. No soundbar is perfect. Personal taste, preference, and listening habits will matter more in your selection.

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