LG SL10YG SOUNDBAR REVIEW

Usage Ratings - Version 1.0
7.3
Mixed Usage
7.0
Dialog / TV Shows
7.6
Music
7.3
Movies
Channels
:
5.1.2

The LG SL10YG is a decent 5.1.2 soundbar system. It has a very excited sound profile with overemphasized bass and treble ranges. It can also get pretty loud and performs quite well at max volume too. It has plenty of connection options and supports object-based sound formats like Atmos. It can also pass-through high-quality signals when using the bar as a hub for your devices. However, the SL10YG has poor surrounds performance and its sound profile changes drastically with Atmos content.

Test Results
Design 8.0
Sound 7.2
Connectivity 9.3
Pros
  • Can get pretty loud.
  • Lots of connectivity options.
  • Very well-built design.
Cons
  • Excited, V-shaped sound profile.
  • Disappointing and narrow soundstage.

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Market Context

The LG SL10YG is the highest-end model of the 2019 soundbar line up from LG. Similar to the 2018 SK10Y, the SL10Y is a 5.1.2 channel bar with up-firing speakers and a sub although this model also supports DTS:X. The SL line up is slightly different from the 2018 SK line up since all three are high-end models; the SL10Y, SL9Y (4.1.2 channels) and the SL8Y (3.1.2 channels) come with the Meridian Technology feature built-in, unlike the 2018 models. The main competitors of the SL10Y are the Bose Soundbar 700 and the Samsung HW-Q90R.

8.0

Design

Style - Bar

This is a very wide bar. It has a metal grill that covers its front face and the sides, whereas the rest is made of solid plastic. It has two round metal grills at the top that cover the up-firing speakers.

Style - Subwoofer

The sub is made of solid plastic and metal. It has a fabric that covers the front and the sides, which can collect dust and can get ripped easily. The port is found on the back.

Style - Satellites

We tested our setup without satellites. You can buy compatible satellites like these if you wish.

Dimensions - Bar
Bar Width : 56.7" (144.1 cm)
Bar Height : 2.4" (6.1 cm)
Bar Depth : 1.9" (4.8 cm)

The LG SL10YG is one of the widest bars we've tested. Not only it will not fit between the legs of a 55" TV, but most likely you will need a larger table to place it on unless you choose to wall-mount it. On the upside, if you place it in front of your TV it won't block the view of your screen as it is not very tall.

Dimensions - Subwoofer
Sub Width : 8.7" (22.1 cm)
Sub Height : 15.5" (39.3 cm)
Sub Depth : 12.3" (31.2 cm)

The sub is about the size of an average desktop PC. It pairs wirelessly to the bar so you can place it anywhere in the room since all it needs is power.

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

There are no satellites in our setup.

Back - Bar
Bar Mounting Type
:
Universal (holes on underside)

The back of the bar is made of solid plastic and has one opening for all the inputs. The power cord is permanently attached to the bar on the other side.

Back - Subwoofer
Enclosure
:
Ported

The back of the soundbar is plain and the port is on the bottom end. The power cable connects above the port and might stick out a little.

Back - Satellites
Sat Mounting Type
:
N/A

Our setup has no satellites.

8.0 Build Quality

The build quality of the soundbar is great. The solid plastic and the metal at the front and sides of the bar, along with its sheer size make it feel premium. The biggest quality concern is the fabric that surrounds the sub that can get easily ripped or can collect dust.

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

  • Manual
  • Optical cable
  • Remote and batteries
  • Power cable
  • Tie-wraps
  • Wall mounting brackets

7.2

Sound

7.8 Stereo Frequency Response
ST Slope
:
-0.46
ST Std. Err.
:
4.90 dB
Low-Frequency Extension
:
30.4 Hz
High-Frequency Extension
:
19.9 kHz

The LG SL10YG has a good stereo frequency response score, which is largely due to its great low-frequency extension and high-frequency extension. This results in most sounds being played by the bar, including the deep punch and rumble of bass, which is great for movies. However, the sound isn’t necessarily neutral, as it has quite a lot of error compared to our flat target. As the graph shows, the bass and treble are overemphasized by quite a bit. This will give an excited, or V-shaped, sound profile which some may prefer.

Stereo Raw Frequency Response
6.5 Stereo Soundstage
Crosstalk Error
:
3.75 dB

When listening to the LG SL10YG, the soundstage is just okay, which is slightly disappointing. Although the bar is very large, the stereo speakers are positioned way in from the sides of the bar, which makes the soundstage narrower than the bar itself. Additionally, the focus of the soundstage is slightly diffused since the sound profile of the soundbar is muddy, making it a bit harder to pinpoint objects in the soundstage.

8.2 Stereo Dynamics
ST SPL @ Max Volume
:
94.2 dB SPL
ST DRC @ Max Volume
:
1.04 dB

This soundbar can get pretty loud and so is suitable for a large room or crowded environments. However, due to the very large size of the bar, its max volume level is slightly disappointing. On the upside, it also performs quite well at max volume as you don’t get much compression.

7.2 Stereo Total Harmonic Distortion
ST Weighted THD @ 80
:
0.52
ST Weighted THD @ Max Volume
:
3.59

The SL10YG’s THD performance at a normal listening volume is within good limits and it will reproduce a clean and pure sound. However, when pushing the bar to its max volume, there is a big jump in THD, especially in the treble range. This might not be as audible with real-life content.

8.0 Center
C Localization
:
Discrete
C Slope
:
-0.86
C Std. Err.
:
3.96 dB
C SPL @ Max Volume
:
88.2 dB SPL
C Weighted THD @ 80
:
0.79
C Weighted THD @ Max Volume
:
5.35

The LG SL10YG soundbar setup has a great center channel performance on surround content. Due to its 5.1.2 configuration, it has a dedicated center speaker, which results in a clearer and more accurate audio reproduction of the dialog in movies. However, the general sound profile is still a bit bass-heavy, but there isn't much bass on center channels to begin with, so this shouldn't matter too much.

4.9 Surrounds
Sr Localization
:
Phantom (Side Firing, Bar)
Rears
:
No
Sr Slope
:
-1.79
Sr Std. Err.
:
4.67 dB
Sr SPL @ Max Volume
:
91.8 dB SPL
Sr Weighted THD @ 80
:
0.81
Sr Weighted THD @ Max Volume
:
3.35

The surround performance is sub-par. The bar has side-firing speakers, which reflect sound off the walls to give you the impression of a wider surround sound. However, this also means this setup won't provide the most accurate and clear representation of surround objects in the soundstage, and it won't feel as real as a discrete surround like with home theatre speakers. It also results in a very dark sound profile and the error compared to our neutral target curve is quite significant.

4.7 Height (Atmos)
H Localization
:
Phantom (Up Firing, Bar)
H Slope
:
2.24
H Std. Err.
:
6.77 dB
H SPL @ Max Volume
:
96.1 dB SPL
H Weighted THD @ 80
:
2.74
H Weighted THD @ Max Volume
:
7.65

The LG SL10YG supports Atmos, but its performance is poor. The bar has up-firing speakers which bounce the sounds off the ceiling, giving you the impression of height. However, the localization of objects is diffused and doesn't sound as real as a discrete localization provided by down-firing speakers. Also, the sound profile changes drastically and becomes fairly bright with a lower amount of bass, but practically no detail in the treble too.

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

The LG SL10YG lacks some of the most important sound enhancement features such as Dialog Enhancement and Room Correction. Without room correction, this soundbar may sound a bit differently depending on your room. On the upside, it does offer a lot of control and customization options to manually make it sound the way you like.

9.3

Connectivity

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

The LG SL10YG can serve as a hub between your device and your TV. Unfortunately, it lacks an Analog Audio In to connect to older devices that lack modern connectivity features, but on the upside, you can play music stored on a USB key.

8.4 Audio Format Support - ARC
eARC
:
No
ARC Dolby Atmos
:
Yes
ARC DTS:X
:
No
ARC Dolby Digital
:
Yes
ARC Dolby Digital Plus
:
Yes
ARC DTS
:
Yes
ARC Dolby TrueHD
:
No
ARC DTS-HD MA
:
No
ARC 5.1 PCM
:
No

The LG SL10YG supports the common Dolby Digital and DTS surround sound formats found on streaming platforms and Blu-ray discs. It can also deliver a more immersive experience through the support of object-based surround sound format like Dolby Atmos. Unfortunately, the lack of eARC support doesn't allow the bar to playback uncompressed sound like 5.1 PCM, over this port.

10 Audio Format Support - Full HDMI In
HDMI Dolby Atmos
:
Yes
HDMI DTS:X
:
Yes
HDMI Dolby Digital
:
Yes
HDMI Dolby Digital Plus
:
Yes
HDMI DTS
:
Yes
HDMI Dolby TrueHD
:
Yes
HDMI DTS-HD MA
:
Yes
HDMI 5.1 PCM
:
Yes

Excellent support for surround sound and object-based sound formats on the LG SL10YG, provided you send the signal through the Full HDMI In port. The soundbar offers immersive experience when watching content, like from Netflix or Blu-rays, encoded in these superior sound formats.

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

The Optical Audio connection can decode Dolby Digital surround sound content that is available on streaming platforms like Netflix and Blu-rays. The supported DTS content is usually not available on its own but serves as a fallback to the very common DTS-HD MA that is common on Blu-ray discs.

9.0 Wireless Playback
Bluetooth
:
Yes
Wi-Fi
:
Yes
Chromecast built-in
:
Yes
Apple AirPlay
:
No

This soundbar offers the common Bluetooth connection, making it easy to connect to mobile devices. You can also use Wi-Fi or cast using Chromecast built-in to play your content, but unfortunately, Apple AirPlay is not supported.

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

When used as a hub, the SL10YG can pass through the highest quality signals. If you connect it between your PC and your TV, the text on the screen will be clear.

Connectivity - Subwoofer
Sub Wireless
:
Yes

The sub connects wirelessly, so all you have is the power cable.

Connectivity - Satellites
Sat Wireless
:
N/A

Our setup has no satellites.

Additional Features

Interface
Display
:
Yes

The interface consists of a small screen behind the front grill. It displays which input is in use, the volume level and the sound effect selected.

Bar Controls

The touch-sensitive buttons on the top of the bar are pretty straightforward. You can select the input, control the volume, turn the system on or off, and control the play pause functionality. Since this bar supports the Google Assistant, you have a button to activate it and a button to mute the microphone if you wish.

Remote
Universal Remote
:
No

The remote is fairly small and can easily fit in your palm. You can control most of the functions on the bar using the remote, and there is a button to loop through the preset sound effects/modes.

App
App Name : LG Wi-Fi Speaker
iOS : Yes
Android : Yes
Acts as the Remote
:
Limited Support
Controls Soundbar's Settings
:
All
Casts Device Files
:
Audio Files Only

The LG Wi-Fi Speaker is a versatile app that can do a few things that can't be done by the remote, like making playlists. On the other hand, there are things that the app can't do but the remote can, like set auto volume.

Other Features
Power Saving
:
Standby
HDMI CEC (TV Remote Control)
:
Yes

This bar, just like most soundbars can enter standby mode after some time of inactivity. Thanks to HDMI ARC you can use the TV remote to perform certain functions on the bar.

Compared to other Soundbars

The LG SL10YG is a decent soundbar for mixed usage that sets itself apart by its excited, or V-shaped, sound profile with a lot of bass and sharp treble. It's also one of the largest bars we've reviewed so far. See our recommendations for the best soundbars, the best Dolby Atmos soundbars, and the best soundbars 5.1.

LG SK10Y
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com

The LG SL10YG 2019 is very similar to the LG SK10Y 2018. The SL10YG gets slightly louder, but their overall performances are very similar. They both have a V-shaped sound profile. However, we measured better Atmos and surround performances on the 2018 model.

Samsung HW-Q90R
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com

The Samsung HW-Q90R is a noticeably better soundbar system than the LG SL10YG. It gets louder, has a better overall sound and soundstage, and performs better at max volume. The 7.1.4 configuration is also more immersive thanks to the additional side-firing speakers and up-firing speakers on the satellites, resulting in better performance with both surround and Atmos content.

Samsung HW-Q80R
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com

The Samsung HW-Q80R is a better soundbar than the LG SL10YG. Its audio reproduction follows our target curve more accurately and it has a noticeably larger soundstage. The SL10YG has a more V-shaped or exciting sound profile. The Atmos performance of the Q80R is also considerably better.

Sonos Playbar
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com

The LG SL10YG is a better soundbar setup than the Sonos Playbar by itself, but note you can easily upgrade the Sonos with a sub and satellites. The LG has two up-firing speakers for Atmos. On the other hand, the stereo soundstage of the Playbar is noticeably larger and more immersive. The Sonos also has room correction, which is great, but lacks HDMI ARC and Full HDMI In ports as it's an older product. Sonos also believes in better audio quality over Wi-Fi, so it doesn't support Bluetooth like the SL10YG does.

7.3 Mixed Usage

Decent for mixed usage. This bar has an excited sound profile, which makes bass and the treble range more emphasized. This results in a decent performance for voices and dialog in movies, but gives an exciting sound for music and movies. It also supports Atmos for a more immersive experience. Unfortunately, its soundstage is fairly narrow.

7.0 Dialog / TV Shows

Decent for dialog. The LG SL10YG can be used for audio content like audiobooks and podcasts but might not be the best option due to the very excited sound profile. On the upside, the bar can get pretty loud and you can easily stream content wirelessly via Wi-Fi and Bluetooth. However, there’s no dialog enhancement feature, which is disappointing.

7.6 Music

Good for music. This soundbar has an excited sound profile that not everybody will like, but is well suited for bass-heavy genres and party music. Unfortunately, its soundstage is fairly narrow and doesn’t sound wide. On the upside, it can get pretty loud and performs well at max volume. You can also EQ it slightly to your preference and stream content wirelessly from your smart device.

7.3 Movies

Decent for movies. Some people will love the excited, V-Shaped sound profile of the SL10YG for movies. However, it doesn’t have a very wide soundstage, but, on the upside, it supports Atmos for a more immersive experience. The bar can get pretty loud and performs fairly well too.

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