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LG S65Q Soundbar Review

Tested using Methodology v1.0
Reviewed May 20, 2022 at 10:17 am
LG S65Q Picture
7.0
Mixed Usage
7.7
Dialogue/TV Shows
7.1
Music
6.5
Movies
Channels
3.1

The LG S65Q is a mid-range 3.1 setup released in 2022. It's a simple bar with a discrete center channel to improve vocal clarity with dialogue in movies and TV shows, and you don't have to worry about fitting satellite speakers into your living room. Unlike the 3.1.3 LG S80QY, there's no Dolby Atmos support. You won't find LG's higher-end features like AI Room Calibration or TV Sound Mode Share, either. However, there are still a wide range of features available, including lots of EQ presets such as 'Clear Voice' and 'AI Sound Pro'. 

Our Verdict

7.0 Mixed Usage

The LG S65Q is decent for mixed usage. Out-of-the-box, dialogue is clear and present in the mix thanks to its balanced mids, and higher-pitched sounds are bright and sparkling. There's a little extra boom in the high-bass, and bass and treble adjustments to customize its sound. Unfortunately, you don't get the deep rumble in the low-bass with action-packed scenes and bass-heavy music. Its surround performance isn't very impressive, either, and there's no support for height content.

Pros
  • Bass and treble adjustments.
  • Dialogue enhancement feature.
Cons
  • Lacks low-bass.
  • No Dolby Atmos support.
7.7 Dialogue/TV Shows

The LG S65Q is good for dialogue-centric content like TV shows and podcasts. Since it's a 3.1 setup, there's a discrete center channel that reproduces dialogue with clarity and accuracy. You can also use its 'Clear Voice' mode to enhance voices, as well as a Night Time feature to balance the volume level when you don't want to disturb those around you. However, podcast listeners are limited to Bluetooth when it comes to wirelessly streaming to the bar.

Pros
  • Good center channel performance.
  • Dialogue enhancement feature.
Cons
  • No graphic EQ.
7.1 Music

The LG S65Q is decent for music. In our subjective tests, we found the bar has a slightly v-shaped sound profile that adds extra boom in the high-bass, while higher-pitched vocals and instruments are bright and sparkling. The mids are still quite balanced, though, so lead instruments are clear and present in the mix. If you want a different sound, you're able to use its bass and treble adjustments to customize its sound. That said, it's not able to get the deep and rumbling low-bass in genres like EDM and hip-hop, unfortunately.

Pros
  • Bass and treble adjustments.
  • Gets loud.
Cons
  • No graphic EQ.
  • Lacks low-bass.
6.5 Movies

The LG S65Q is fair for movies. Dialogue is clear and present in the mix, though you don't feel the deep thump and rumble in action-packed scenes. It supports surround sound formats like Dolby Digital and DTS which are often found on streaming platforms, but it has to downmix it into stereo in order to play it. There's no Dolby Atmos support, either.

Pros
  • Bass and treble adjustments.
  • Gets loud.
Cons
  • Lacks low-bass.
  • No Dolby Atmos support.
  • 7.0 Mixed Usage
  • 7.7 Dialogue/TV Shows
  • 7.1 Music
  • 6.5 Movies
  1. Updated May 20, 2022: Review published.
  2. Updated May 16, 2022: Early access published.

Test Results

perceptual testing image
Design
Design
Style - Bar

The LG S65Q has a simple design. It's mostly made of plastic with fabric covering the top and the front, so it looks quite similar to the LG SP7Y.

Design
Style - Subwoofer

The sub has a similar design to the sub for the LG SP7Y. It's mostly made of plastic with a wood-like material on the sides. The front is covered in fabric. When it's connected to the bar, a green light shines in the front, and you aren't able to turn it off or dim the brightness.

Design
Style - Satellites
Design
Dimensions - Bar
Width 39.4" (100.0 cm)
Height 2.5" (6.4 cm)
Depth 4.2" (10.7 cm)

The LG S65Q is fairly wide, so it doesn't fit between the legs of a 55 inch TV stand. However, it's not too tall, so it doesn't block your TV screen.

Design
Dimensions - Subwoofer
Width 6.7" (17.1 cm)
Height 15.4" (39.1 cm)
Depth 10.4" (26.5 cm)

The sub is about the size of an average desktop computer, and since it connects wirelessly to the bar, you have a lot of flexibility when placing it in your room.

Design
Dimensions - Satellites
Width N/A
Height N/A
Depth N/A
Design
Back - Bar
Bar Mounting
Universal (holes on underside)

The back of the bar has openings for the inputs and the power cable. If you want to mount it to the wall, there are universal holes on the underside, and a wall-mounting kit included.

Design
Back - Subwoofer
Enclosure
Ported

There's a port on the back of the sub. The cable is integrated into the sub, and it attaches at the back.

Design
Back - Satellites
Mounting
No
7.5
Design
Build Quality

The LG S65Q has a good build quality. The bar is mostly made of plastic that feels solid. However, there's fabric on the front and top that collects dust and pet hair easily. The sub is also made of plastic, with a wood-like material on the sides. There's fabric in front, and it's nice and tight, especially compared to the fabric on the bar.

Design
In The Box
HDMI Cable Length
N/A
Digital Optical Cable Length
1.5 m (4.9 ft)

  • Manual
  • Mounting template
  • Power cable
  • Remote with batteries (2x AA)
  • 2x mounting brackets with 2x screws
  • Power adapter
  • Optical cable

Sound
7.2
Sound
Stereo Frequency Response
Tested Preset
Standard
Slope
-1.02
Std. Err.
3.58 dB
Low-Frequency Extension
49.0 Hz
High-Frequency Extension
18.2 kHz

The LG S65Q has a decent stereo frequency response. Though the frequency response shows a more bass-heavy sound profile, with a little extra boom in the high-bass. The mids are quite balanced, so vocals and lead instruments are clear and present in the mix. Subjectively, it has a slightly v-shaped sound, with some extra brightness in the treble. However, it doesn't offer a very impressive low-frequency extension, so you don't feel the deep rumble in bass-heavy music genres.

7.3
Sound
Stereo Frequency Response With Preliminary Calibration
Suggested Preset
Standard
Suggested Bass Setting
-5
Suggested Treble Setting
3
Slope
0.15
Std. Err.
2.99 dB
Low-Frequency Extension
49.7 Hz
High-Frequency Extension
19.9 kHz

With its bass set to '-5' and its treble set to '3', the LG S65Q has a more neutral frequency response. It's balanced across the range, so the bass is present, and vocals and lead instruments are clearly reproduced. Unfortunately, a bass adjustment feature can't make up for the low-frequency extension, so you still don't feel the thump in the low-bass.

7.0
Sound
Stereo Soundstage
Crosstalk Error
2.31 dB

The LG S65Q has a decent stereo soundstage. The soundstage is perceived to be a bit wider than the bar itself, but it doesn't have any tricks to make it seem wider than that. On the upside, it has good focus, so sound objects like instruments in an orchestra seem to come from an accurate location that matches the action onscreen.

7.3
Sound
Stereo Dynamics
SPL @ Max Volume
95.5 dB SPL
DRC @ Max Volume
3.20 dB

The LG S65Q has a decent stereo dynamics performance. It gets loud, so you can fill up larger living rooms and open spaces with sound. However, at louder volumes, there's noticeable compression, especially in the bass range, that affects the clarity of audio. Bass-heavy music and action-packed scenes aren't as clear or detailed as a result.

7.8
Sound
Stereo Total Harmonic Distortion
Weighted THD @ 80dB
0.38
Weighted THD @ Max Volume
2.18

The LG S65Q has a very good stereo THD performance. At normal listening volumes, audio reproduction is clean and pure. As with most bars, there's a jump in THD at max volume. You aren't likely to notice distortion unless you're an avid audiophile, and even then, it's only an issue at loud volumes.

7.8
Sound
Center
Localization
Discrete
Slope
-0.59
Std. Err.
4.09 dB
SPL @ Max Volume
90.8 dB SPL
Weighted THD @ 80dB
1.32
Weighted THD @ Max Volume
3.68

The LG S65Q has a very good center channel performance. It's a 3.1 setup with a discrete center channel, so dialogue is clearly and accurately reproduced. Most voices are reproduced in the mid-range, and the channel's balanced frequency response ensures that they're present in the mix.

3.9
Sound
Surround 5.1
Localization
Stereo (Downmix)
Slope
-1.70
Std. Err.
4.38 dB
SPL @ Max Volume
95.0 dB SPL
Weighted THD @ 80dB
0.42
Weighted THD @ Max Volume
1.98
7.1 Rears
No

The LG S65Q has a poor surrounds performance. Since it's a 3.1 bar, it has to downmix surround sound into stereo in order to play it. As a result, sound objects - think voices or racing cars in a chase scene - don't seem to come from an accurate location in the soundstage. Instead, it seems like sound comes from speakers placed in front of you.

0
Sound
Height (Atmos)
Localization
Not Supported
Slope
N/A
Std. Err.
N/A
SPL @ Max Volume
N/A
Weighted THD @ 80dB
N/A
Weighted THD @ Max Volume
N/A

For a bar with Atmos support, check out the LG S75Q or the Samsung HW-Q60B.

6.6
Sound
Sound Enhancement Features
Room Correction
No
Dialogue Enhancement
Yes
Auto-Volume/Night Mode
Yes
Subwoofer Level Adjustment
Yes
Bass Adjustment
Yes
Treble Adjustment
Yes
EQ
Presets
Surround Level Adjustment
No
Rear Level Adjustment
No
Height Level Adjustment
No
Virtual Surround
Yes

The LG S65Q has a fair selection of sound enhancement features. Compared to more premium models like the LG S90QY and the LG S80QY, there's no room correction feature available, so it sounds a bit different depending on your room's acoustics. However, you still have some ability to customize its sound to your liking, using its bass and treble adjustments as well as its EQ presets: 'AI Sound Pro', 'Standard', 'Bass Blast', 'Music', 'Clear Voice', 'Game', 'Cinema', 'DTS Virtual:X', and 'Sports'. 'Clear Voice' enhances dialogue, and 'Cinema' and 'DTS Virtual:X' are virtual surround modes that provide a more three-dimensional sound.

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

You can connect the bar to your TV using traditional HDMI or Optical connections. However, if you have a compatible LG TV, you're also able to use LG Sound Sync to connect the bar to your TV wirelessly over a Bluetooth connection. It reduces the amount of wires in your setup, but if you don't have an LG TV, you only need one cable to connect the devices.

7.1
Connectivity
Audio Format Support - ARC
eARC
No
Dolby Atmos
No
Dolby Digital
Yes
Dolby Digital Plus
No
DTS
Yes
DTS:X (eARC only)
No
Dolby TrueHD (eARC only)
No
DTS-HD MA (eARC only)
No
5.1 PCM (eARC only)
No

The LG S65Q has decent audio format support via ARC. It supports Dolby Digital, which you find on a lot of streaming services and Blu-rays, though it downmixes it into stereo. You aren't able to watch higher-quality formats like Dolby Atmos.

8.3
Connectivity
Audio Format Support - Full HDMI In
Dolby Atmos
No
DTS:X
No
Dolby Digital
Yes
Dolby Digital Plus
No
DTS
Yes
Dolby TrueHD
No
DTS-HD MA
No
5.1 PCM
Yes

The LG S65Q has great audio format support via Full HDMI In. You can watch common surround sound formats, often found on streaming services. However, there's no support for lossless or object-based formats like Dolby Atmos.

10
Connectivity
Audio Format Support - Optical
Dolby Digital
Yes
DTS
Yes

The LG S65Q supports Dolby Digital via Optical, which is the most common surround sound format. DTS isn't as common on its own, but it's the fallback for DTS-HD MA, which is on a lot of Blu-rays.

7.9
Connectivity
Latency
ARC
64 ms
Optical
56 ms
Full HDMI In
66 ms

The LG S65Q has a very good latency performance. It has fairly low latency, so you don't notice a delay between the audio you hear and the video you see. There's also an AV Sync feature in the app to help with any issues. Some TVs and apps compensate for latency differently, so your real-world experience can vary.

6.0
Connectivity
Wireless Playback
Bluetooth
Yes
Wi-Fi
No
Chromecast built-in
No
Apple AirPlay
No

The LG S65Q lets you wirelessly stream audio to the bar from your mobile devices via Bluetooth.

Connectivity
Other Input Specifications
4k @ 60 Hz Passthrough
No
4k @ 60 Hz @ 10 bit Passthrough
No
4k @ 60 Hz @ 4:4:4 Passthrough
No
HDR10 Passthrough
No

The LG S65Q is advertised to support 4k passthrough, but it can only do 1920 x 1080. It's possible that a future firmware update will add high-quality passthrough capabilities, and we'll update the review if it does. However, as of publication, this feature isn't available.

Connectivity
Connectivity - Subwoofer
Sub Wireless
Yes

The sub connects to the bar wirelessly, so you only have to plug it into a power source.

Connectivity
Connectivity - Satellites
Sat Wireless
No
Additional Features
Additional Features
Interface
Display
Yes

In front of the bar, there's a small display behind the fabric. It shows the adjustments you make with the remote and the app, including the volume level, the input, and the sound mode.

Additional Features
Bar Controls

There are some controls on top of the bar that let you control its features. You can power it on/off, change the input, adjust the volume, and activate Bluetooth.

Additional Features
Remote
Universal Remote
No

The LG S65Q comes with the standard LG remote. It's a simple tool for controlling the bar's basic functions, like the volume and the input.

Additional Features
Voice Assistants Support
Amazon Alexa
No
Google Assistant
No
Apple Siri
No
Additional Features
App
App Name LG Sound Bar
iOS Yes
Android Yes
Acts As A Remote
Yes
Controls Soundbar's Settings
All
Casts Device Files
Yes

The LG Sound Bar app is really useful and lets you control all the bar's settings, so you can use it as a remote. You get access to all of its sound enhancement features, like the bass and treble adjustments, the night mode feature, and AV Sync to reduce latency.

Additional Features
Other Features
Power Saving
Auto-off
HDMI CEC (TV Remote Control)
Yes

The LG S65Q has an auto-off feature that you control using the app or the remote. When it's on, the bar automatically turns off after fifteen minutes of inactivity. It also supports HDMI CEC, so you can control its basic functions with your TV remote.

Differences Between Sizes And Variants

The LG S65Q is available in 'Black', and the label for our model is here.

If you come across another version of this soundbar, let us know in the discussions below so we can update our review.

Compared To Other Soundbars

The LG S65Q is a mid-range 3.1 model that doesn't support Dolby Atmos content. It's ideal for listening to vocal-centric content like TV shows thanks to its discrete center channel that improves vocal reproduction. However, it lacks low-bass and doesn't offer a very immersive sound with surround sound content.

See also our recommendations for the best soundbars, the best soundbars for dialogue, and the best LG soundbars.

LG SP8YA

The LG SP8YA is better than the LG S65Q. The SP8YA is a 3.1.2 setup that supports Dolby Atmos content, unlike the S65Q. It's able to reproduce a more extended low-bass, too, and it has more premium features like room correction. 

Samsung HW-Q600A

The Samsung HW-Q600A is better than the LG S65Q. The Samsung is a 3.1.2 setup that supports Dolby Atmos content, unlike the LG. It has a more neutral sound profile out-of-the-box that reproduces clearer and more accurate dialogue.

LG SP7Y

The LG SP7Y is better than the LG S65Q. The SP7Y is a 5.1 setup that offers better soundstage and surround performances. It comes with more sound enhancement features, too. However, if you mostly listen to stereo content, the 3.1 S65Q is a solid choice.

LG SP9YA

The LG SP9YA is better than the LG S65Q. The SP9YA is a 5.1.2 setup that supports Dolby Atmos content, unlike the S65Q. It's able to reproduce a more extended low-bass, too, and it has more premium features like room correction. Also, its surrounds and soundstage performances are better.

LG S75Q

The LG S75Q is better than the LG S65Q. The S75Q is a 3.1.2 setup, and it supports Dolby Atmos content found on lots of streaming platforms, unlike the S65Q. The 3.1 S65Q is still a solid pick for you if you just watch TV shows and music.

Samsung HW-Q60B

The Samsung HW-Q60B is better than the LG S65Q. They're both 3.1 setups, but the Samsung supports Dolby Atmos content, unlike the LG. It also comes with a few more customization tools, including a graphic EQ.

LG S80QY

The LG S80QY is better than the LG S65Q. The S80QY supports Dolby Atmos content, unlike the S65Q. Also, it comes with more sound enhancement features, like room correction, as well as more wireless playback options. It can reproduce a more extended low-bass, so you feel more thump and rumble in your audio.

Samsung HW-Q800A

The Samsung HW-Q800A is better than the LG S65Q. The Samsung is a 3.1.2 setup that supports Dolby Atmos content, unlike the LG. It has a better stereo soundstage and a more neutral sound profile out-of-the-box that reproduces clearer and more accurate dialogue.

Klipsch Cinema 700

The Klipsch Cinema 700 is a better 3.1 setup than the LG S65Q. The Klipsch supports Dolby Atmos content, unlike the LG, and it has a better stereo soundstage. Also, it can reproduce a more extended low-bass. That said, it's not as well-built as the LG.

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