Vizio SB2020n-G6 Soundbar Review

Tested using Methodology v0.8
Reviewed Jun 04, 2020 at 08:51 am
Vizio SB2020n-G6 Picture
5.6
Mixed Usage
7.1
Dialogue/TV Shows
6.4
Music
4.2
Movies
Channels
2.0

The Vizio SB2020n-G6 is a compact 2.0 soundbar. Although it can't be wall-mounted and it doesn't get loud enough to fill a large room, its compact size can be a good addition to a computer setup as it isn't very tall and it shouldn't obscure your screen, unless your monitor sits flush on the table. It has a balanced and neutral mid-range, which is alright for dialogue content, and its bass can pack a punch. However, as it doesn't have a subwoofer, it lacks thump and rumble. At the same time, there's a little bit of distortion and compression audible from the bass range, even at a normal listening volume. While it offers several connectivity options, it lacks an HDMI In port, and it can only support PCM-format content.

Our Verdict

5.6 Mixed Usage

The Vizio SB2020n-G6 is disappointing for mixed use. This soundbar is more suited for a computer setup and it shows in its performance. Its dark sound profile lacks a thumpy bass, which can affect your immersion into action films or music. It doesn't get very loud either, which may be a problem for house parties or large rooms. However, it should be more than enough if you're listening to vocal-centric content.

Pros
  • Compact size.
  • Auto-off power saving feature.
Cons
  • Only supports PCM-format content.
  • Distortion and compression may be audible, even at a normal listening volume.
  • Can't be wall-mounted.
7.1 Dialogue/TV Shows

The Vizio SB2020n-G6 is alright for dialogue and TV shows. Although it has a neutral-sounding mid-range, which is suited for vocal-centric content, it lacks a dialogue enhancement feature to bring out vocals. It doesn't get very loud, either, but it should still be adequate if you're listening to your favorite TV shows. The auto-volume mode can also help balance the volume between different audio content such as between TV shows and commercials.

6.4 Music

The Vizio SB2020n-G6 is passable for music. It has a dark sound profile, so some detail and clarity get lost in your mix. The soundbar doesn't have a subwoofer either, and while the bass is still punchy, fans of EDM and hip-hop may find the thump and rumble lacking. There's some compression and distortion in the bass-range that may be audible, even at lower volumes. You can adjust the bass and treble, which is nice, but this soundbar only has two EQ presets to choose from. It doesn't get that loud either, so it's not suited for house parties or large rooms.

4.2 Movies

The Vizio SB2020n-G6 is poor for movies. Since it doesn't have a subwoofer, it lacks thump and rumble, which can make action movies less immersive. Although it can still produce a punchy bass, there's some compression and distortion that may be audible, even at more reasonable volumes. The soundstage is slightly wider than the bar itself but it also sounds both centered and diffused, depending on the sound. This soundbar can't decode or downmix surround sound content to stereo either.

  • 5.6 Mixed Usage
  • 7.1 Dialogue/TV Shows
  • 6.4 Music
  • 4.2 Movies

Check Price

Black Vizio SB2020n-G6
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com

Test Results

perceptual testing image
Market Context
Market Context
Market Context

The Vizio SB2020n-G6 is a 2019 entry-level soundbar from Vizio. Although Vizio makes other 2.0 soundbars, this soundbar is more compact than others in their lineup. This bar competes with other budget-friendly 2.0 soundbars such as the Vizio SB3220n-F6 or the Sony HT-S100F. It also competes with smaller soundbars like the Bose Solo 5.

Design
Design
Style - Bar

The Vizio SB2020n-G6 may look similar to other Vizio soundbars such as the Vizio SB3220n-F6 or the Vizio SB3820-C6 but it's much more compact and rectangular. It's made from a dense plastic, including its silver plastic caps on other ends, giving it solid build. It also has a fabric cover but it can easily collect dust over time or rip.

Design
Style - Subwoofer

This soundbar doesn't come with a subwoofer.

Design
Style - Satellites

This soundbar doesn't come with satellite speakers.

Design
Dimensions - Bar
Bar Width 20.0" (50.8 cm)
Bar Height 2.2" (5.7 cm)
Bar Depth 4.4" (11.3 cm)

The Vizio SB2020n-G6 is a very compact bar. Although it's slightly larger than the Bose Solo 5, it should still fit between the legs of most 55" TVs. It's also not very tall and it shouldn't block your screen unless your TV sits flush on the table.

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

This soundbar doesn't come with a subwoofer.

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

This soundbar doesn't come with satellite speakers.

Design
Back - Bar
Bar Mounting Type
No

The back of this soundbar is plastic and isn't designed to be mounted on a wall. Instead, it's meant to sit on your desk or table. The inputs are directly on the back of the bar and while there's a separate opening on the bar's right side, it doesn't have any inputs in it.

Design
Back - Subwoofer
Enclosure
N/A

This soundbar doesn't come with a subwoofer.

Design
Back - Satellites
Sat Mounting Type
N/A

This soundbar doesn't come with satellite speakers.

7.0
Design
Build Quality

The Vizio SB2020n-G6 has a decent build quality. It's mostly made of good quality plastic. However, the fabric covering can easily collect dust and can be ripped.

Design
In The Box
HDMI Cable Length
N/A
Digital Optical Cable Length
3.3 ft (1.0 m)

  • Manual
  • Remote
  • 2x AAA batteries
  • Power cable
  • Stereo RCA cable
  • Stereo RCA to 3.5mm audio cable
  • Optical cable

Sound
6.5
Sound
Stereo Frequency Response
ST Slope
-0.76
ST Std. Err.
2.34 dB
Low-Frequency Extension
57.4 Hz
High-Frequency Extension
5.6 kHz

The Vizio SB2020n-G6 has an only okay stereo frequency response when on the Music preset. As it doesn't come with a subwoofer, it lacks thump and rumble. Although it still manages to pack a punchy bass, it can sound compressed and slightly distorted, even if you're listening to your favorite tunes at a lower volume. The treble is fairly dark, too, which makes your mixes lose detail and clarity. On the upside, the mid-range is pretty neutral.

Sound
Stereo Raw Frequency Response
6.5
Sound
Stereo Soundstage
Crosstalk Error
3.54 dB

The Vizio SB2020n-G6 has an alright stereo soundstage. Music and movies sound wider than the bar but not by a lot. Its focus is concentrated at the center of the bar but as it tries to separate sounds in space, the soundstage becomes diffused and objects sound like they aren't always coming from an accurate, pinpoint location.

5.7
Sound
Stereo Dynamics
ST SPL @ Max Volume
85.5 dB SPL
ST DRC @ Max Volume
3.87 dB

The Vizio SB2020n-G6 has disappointing stereo dynamics. While it may not get loud enough for a large room or house party, it should still be loud enough if placed in front of your computer. At max volume, there's significant pumping and compression artifacts present, particularly in the bass range. However, even at a lower volume, you may still hear some compression.

7.2
Sound
Stereo Total Harmonic Distortion
ST Weighted THD @ 80
0.74
ST Weighted THD @ Max Volume
1.35

The Vizio SB2020n-G6's total harmonic distortion is alright. There's a little bit of distortion, both at a normal listening volume as well as at max volume. However, as distortion is relatively difficult to hear in comparison to pumping or compression artifacts, it may not be noticeable to everyone.

0
Sound
Center
C Localization
N/A
C Slope
N/A
C Std. Err.
N/A
C SPL @ Max Volume
N/A
C Weighted THD @ 80
N/A
C Weighted THD @ Max Volume
N/A

This soundbar lacks a center channel, and it can't decode or downmix surround sound content to stereo.

0
Sound
Surrounds
Sr Localization
N/A
Rears
N/A
Sr Slope
N/A
Sr Std. Err.
N/A
Sr SPL @ Max Volume
N/A
Sr Weighted THD @ 80
N/A
Sr Weighted THD @ Max Volume
N/A

This soundbar doesn't have any surround channels, nor can it downmix, or even decode, surround sound content to stereo. For a stereo 2.0 soundbar that can play surround files, check out the TCL Alto 5.

0
Sound
Height (Atmos)
H Localization
N/A
H Slope
N/A
H Std. Err.
N/A
H SPL @ Max Volume
N/A
H Weighted THD @ 80
N/A
H Weighted THD @ Max Volume
N/A

This soundbar doesn't support Atmos.

3.5
Sound
Sound Enhancement Features
Room Correction
No
Dialogue Enhancement
No
Auto-Volume/Night Mode
Yes
Subwoofer Level Adjustment
No
Bass Adjustment
Yes
Treble Adjustment
Yes
EQ
Presets
Surround Level Adjustment
N/A
Rear Level Adjustment
N/A
Height Level Adjustment
N/A
Virtual Surround
Yes

The Vizio SB2020n-G6 has poor sound enhancement features. You can adjust the bass and treble, which is nice if you want to tweak the sound a little bit; however, there are only two presets: music and movie mode. While there's an auto-volume feature which can help if you like to watch TV at night, there isn't a dialogue enhancement or room correction feature. On the upside, this soundbar has a DTS virtual X surround sound feature, which could make your audio sound more immersive, but we didn't test this.

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

The Vizio SB2020n-G6 has a selection of inputs. There's a standard audio jack in addition to an RCA input. There's an optical-in too, and you can play content from flash drives thanks to its USB input. On the downside, there are no HDMI ports, so you won't be able to use this soundbar as a hub between your TV and other media devices.

0
Connectivity
Audio Format Support - ARC
eARC
No
Dolby Atmos
No
Dolby Digital
No
Dolby Digital Plus
No
DTS
No
DTS:X (eARC only)
No
Dolby TrueHD (eARC only)
No
DTS-HD MA (eARC only)
No
5.1 PCM (eARC only)
No

This soundbar doesn't have an HDMI ARC port.

0
Connectivity
Audio Format Support - Full HDMI In
Dolby Atmos
No
DTS:X
No
Dolby Digital
No
Dolby Digital Plus
No
DTS
No
Dolby TrueHD
No
DTS-HD MA
No
5.1 PCM
No

This soundbar doesn't have any HDMI ports.

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

This soundbar only supports PCM-format content. If you use this soundbar with a TV, it has a voice cue to let you know if you need to change your TV settings to PCM.

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

The Vizio SB2020n-G6 has passable wireless playback options. It only supports Bluetooth which is nice when you want to wirelessly stream music from your mobile devices, but that's about it.

Connectivity
Other Input Specifications
4k @ 60 Hz Passthrough
N/A
4k @ 60 Hz @ 10 bit Passthrough
N/A
4k @ 60 Hz @ 4:4:4 Passthrough
N/A
HDR10 Passthrough
N/A

Since this soundbar doesn't support HDMI, there's no video passthrough.

Connectivity
Connectivity - Subwoofer
Sub Wireless
N/A

This soundbar doesn't come with a subwoofer.

Connectivity
Connectivity - Satellites
Sat Wireless
N/A

This soundbar doesn't come with satellites.

Additional Features
Additional Features
Interface
Display
No

The Vizio SB2020n-G6 has a very limited interface. It uses one small light in the middle of the soundbar and it changes color depending on what inputs you're on. It also flashes when you change the volume and if the file you're playing isn't compatible with the bar.

Additional Features
Bar Controls

This soundbar has simple controls located on the top of the bar. You can turn the bar on/off, change inputs, pair a Bluetooth device, and adjust the volume.

Additional Features
Remote
Universal Remote
No

This soundbar has a simple remote. Just like the Vizio SB3220n-F6's remote, when you're connected via Bluetooth, you can control audio playback. You can also change inputs and activate sound enhancement features.

Additional Features
App
App Name N/A
iOS No
Android No
Acts as the Remote
No
Controls Soundbar's Settings
No
Casts Device Files
No

This soundbar isn't compatible with Vizio's SmartCast app.

Additional Features
Other Features
Power Saving
Auto-off
HDMI CEC (TV Remote Control)
No

This soundbar doesn't support HDMI so you won't be able to use your TV's remote to control it. On the upside, it has an auto-off timer after a few minutes of inactivity, which is nice if you want to save power.

Compared to other soundbars

 The Vizio SB2020n-G6 is a compact 2.0 channel soundbar. It's the smallest Vizio soundbar we've tested so far and it's similarly compact as the Bose Solo 5. Unlike 2.1 soundbars, it doesn't have a dedicated subwoofer, though, so it lacks decent thump and rumble. It can only support PCM-format content and it lacks some common sound enhancement features like a dialogue enhancement mode. If you're still shopping around for soundbars, check out our recommendations for the best small soundbars, the best budget soundbars, and the best soundbars under $200.

TCL Alto 5
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com

The TCL Alto 5 is a better stereo 2.0 soundbar than the Vizio SB2020n-G6. It supports surround channels while the Vizio can't, which makes a big difference for movie watchers. It's also slightly better built. On the other hand, if you only want to watch some stereo content, the Vizio has a better-balanced bass, although its overall sound profile lacks a bit of detail in higher frequencies. 

Bose Solo 5
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com

The Bose Solo 5 and Vizio SB2020n-G6 are both similarly small soundbars, but the Bose Solo 5 has a better overall performance. The Bose has a better balanced sound profile, and it supports Dolby Digital content by downmixing it via its optical connection. While it doesn't have a dedicated center channel, the Bose can also create a phantom center that still has a decent performance. However, even though the Vizio have limited sound enhancement features such as only two EQ presets, the Bose don't have any at all.  

Vizio SB3220n-F6
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com

The Vizio SB3220n-F6 is a better 2.0 soundbar than the Vizio SB2020n-G6. Although they both have a similarly decent build, the SB3220n-F6 can be wall-mounted, and it also has a slightly better balanced sound profile. It can get louder than the SB2020n-G6, and it can downmix surround content into stereo. It even supports Dolby Digital content thanks to its optical connection. However, the SB2020n-G6 has an auto-off feature. 

Sony HT-S100F
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com

The Sony HT-S100F is a better 2.0 soundbar than the Vizio SB2020n-G6. While the Sony has a slightly less balanced sound profile, it can downmix surround content into stereo. It can also get louder than the Vizio without as many compression artifacts, it has an HDMI In port, and you can wall-mount it. However, the Vizio has a more neutral mid-range and you can also adjust its bass and treble. If you're low on space, the Vizio is also very compact and can be a suitable choice if you're looking for a soundbar for your computer setup. 

TaoTronics TT-SK023
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com

The Vizio SB2020n-G6 is a slightly better performing soundbar than the TaoTronics TT-SK023. The Vizio is slightly better-balanced, it has a auto-volume mode as well as bass and treble adjustments, and it has a USB input so that you can play files directly from your flash drive. However, the TaoTronics can get louder with less compression, and you can also wall-mount it. 

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