AV Outfitters

Best Budget Soundbars on the Market (2023)

Tuesday, September 26, 2023

Featured Buy: Sonos Beam


When you keep to your spending plan, one of two things can happen: either you receive a product that is worth your money or you are taken advantage of. You obviously want the former, which is why we’ve provided a selection of excellent budget soundbars below. You can anticipate high quality at a reasonable and inexpensive price because these are some of the top goods we’ve evaluated that are a good value.

Soundbars have the following benefits over more traditional home theater speaker systems: They usually have lower prices, use less space, and require less effort to assemble. Whether you want a soundbar that supports Dolby Atmos or something you can plug your old MP3 player into, there is a model out there for everyone. Not all soundbars are made equal, even though some provide a better listening experience than others. If you watch a lot of TV or listen to music at home, you’ll want something that sounds great and is compatible with your existing devices, whether you want to connect it to your smart TV or prefer streaming directly from your smartphone. The dialogue from your favorite programs is faithfully reproduced by the best soundbars for TV.

After testing more than 150 of them, the best soundbars are listed below. See our selections for the best quality tv soundbars, best soundbars for $100, and best Dolby Atmos soundbars.

Razer Leviathan V2 Pro

Amazon Ratings 4.3/5

The Razer Leviathan V2 Pro is the latest offering in Razer’s desktop PC soundbar lineup, building upon the features of its predecessors. With a sleek black rectangular design and a plastic build, the soundbar and its included subwoofer offer a slightly more significant form factor than the previous Leviathan V2 model. The soundbar measures a few inches longer, while the subwoofer is a couple of inches taller, providing an enhanced audio experience while taking up more space on your desk.

The standout feature of the Razer Leviathan V2 Pro is its innovative head-tracking functionality. It incorporates five 2-inch full-range beamforming speakers that utilize head tracking to maintain surround sound audio even if you move around at your desk. This feature provides an immersive audio experience, setting it apart from its predecessors. The soundbar also introduces a new control scheme with fewer buttons and a prominent volume dial/power button. The head-tracking surround sound capability is the main highlight of this product.

Regarding audio performance, the Razer Leviathan V2 Pro delivers powerful bass and offers a wide soundstage. The downward-firing subwoofer provides substantial rumble, and the sound imaging is excellent, offering a cinematic experience. However, some users have noted that the high-end frequencies can be lacking, and the mid-range may sound muddy depending on the audio source. Nevertheless, considering its performance and features, the Leviathan V2 Pro offers good value for its price point.

Connectivity-wise, the Leviathan V2 Pro primarily targets Windows PC users, as it relies on a USB connection and lacks HDMI or optical inputs. It does offer Bluetooth 5.0 support for wireless audio streaming from compatible devices. Users can further customize and control the soundbar through the Razer Synapse application, which is available for Windows only.

In conclusion, the Razer Leviathan V2 Pro is a notable addition to Razer’s soundbar lineup, providing an immersive audio experience with its head-tracking technology and powerful bass. While it carries a higher price tag than its predecessor, it offers enhanced features and performance. The soundbar’s wider soundstage, compact design, and affordability make it an attractive option for gamers and PC users looking to elevate their audio setup.


Regarding connectivity, the Leviathan V2 Pro retains many of the same features as the regular V2 model. It can connect to your PC via USB, headphones through a 3.5mm jack, and Bluetooth devices. It also incorporates THX’s headphone-free spatial audio technology and integrates with Razer Synapse on your PC, granting access to a 10-band EQ, Razer Chroma control, and more. A new addition to the V2 Pro includes a headset jack, which is a nice feature. However, it lacks a 3.5mm input.

In terms of design, the Leviathan V2 Pro sports a bulky desktop soundbar form factor, measuring 4.5 by 23.6 by 3.5 inches and weighing 5 pounds. It features a black metallic build with beveled sections in the center, housing the infrared head-tracking camera and LEDs. The top of the soundbar includes control buttons and a large volume dial that also serves as the power button. The included subwoofer is a plain black box designed to be placed conveniently out of the way.

Creative Sound Blaster x Katana

creative , the third best soundbar for pc gaming in 2023
Amazon Ratings 4.6/5

The Creative Sound BlasterX Katana is a soundbar designed explicitly for gaming enthusiasts. It offers a range of features and delivers impressive audio quality, making it a popular choice among gamers. With its slim profile, the Katana fits perfectly on a desk, complementing the gaming setup while providing immersive sound.

One notable feature of the Katana is its customizable RGB lighting. Users can personalize the lighting effects to match their gaming environment or preferences, adding an extra visual element to their gaming experience.

In terms of audio performance, the Katana boasts powerful sound output and clarity. It is equipped with built-in audio processing technology, enhancing gaming audio effects and providing an immersive soundstage. This feature helps gamers to accurately locate and distinguish in-game sounds, giving them a competitive edge.

The Katana’s sleek design and slim profile contribute to its appeal. Its compact size allows it to fit neatly on a desk without occupying too much space. Despite its slim form factor, it delivers robust audio performance, making it an ideal choice for gamers with limited desk space.

Overall, the Creative Sound BlasterX Katana is a soundbar that combines aesthetics, audio quality, and gaming-centric features. Its customizable RGB lighting, slim profile, and enhanced gaming audio effects make it an excellent choice for gamers seeking an immersive audio experience during their gaming sessions.

JBL Bar 2.1 Deep Bass

Amazon Ratings 5/5

The JBL Bar 2.1 Deep Bass is a soundbar that delivers powerful and dynamic sound, enhanced by its wireless subwoofer. This soundbar is designed to provide a cinematic audio experience with features such as JBL Surround Sound and Dolby Digital support. With its Bluetooth connectivity and HDMI ARC integration, it offers convenience and versatility for use with various devices, including PCs.

The JBL Bar 2.1 Deep Bass has received positive reviews for its sound performance, particularly its deep bass capabilities. It excels in delivering dynamic and detailed movie sound, enhancing the overall viewing experience, especially for blockbuster movies. The wireless subwoofer is a standout feature, providing a large and impactful bass response that adds depth to the sound reproduction. Compared to other soundbars in its price range, the JBL Bar 2.1 Deep Bass stands out with its impressive dynamic range and brawn.

In terms of design, the JBL Bar 2.1 Deep Bass features a compact soundbar and a substantial wireless subwoofer. The soundbar has a sleek and minimalist design, measuring approximately 28 inches in length and featuring a gunmetal grey finish. The subwoofer complements the soundbar with its size and power, housing a 6.5-inch driver that produces deep and impactful bass. The control scheme, however, is relatively simple, offering basic controls for volume, power, and source selection.

Connectivity options on the JBL Bar 2.1 Deep Bass include Bluetooth, optical digital input, and two HDMI ports, one of which supports ARC (Audio Return Channel). These options provide flexibility for connecting various devices, including PCs, to the soundbar. It’s worth noting that while the soundbar supports Bluetooth streaming, it doesn’t feature Wi-Fi streaming options like Chromecast or AirPlay. The inclusion of Dolby Digital decoding further enhances the soundbar’s compatibility with different audio sources.

While the JBL Bar 2.1 Deep Bass excels in delivering a powerful and immersive sound experience for movies, it may not be as refined when it comes to music playback. It lacks surround or virtual sound processing features, which could limit the soundstage for certain content. Additionally, the soundbar’s remote control has limited sound controls and lacks traditional sound modes found in other soundbars. However, it offers a subwoofer level adjustment for fine-tuning the bass response.

In summary, the JBL Bar 2.1 Deep Bass is a soundbar with a wireless subwoofer that delivers powerful and dynamic sound, particularly well-suited for enhancing movie viewing experiences. Its deep bass, JBL Surround Sound, and Dolby Digital support contribute to an immersive cinematic audio experience. With Bluetooth connectivity and HDMI ARC integration, it offers convenient connectivity options for integration with PCs and other devices. While it may not be as versatile for music playback and lacks advanced sound controls, it compensates with its impressive brawn and impactful sound performance.

Bose Smart Soundbar 300

bose smart soundbar 300, the fifth best soundbar for pc
Amazon Ratings 4.3/5

The Bose Smart Soundbar 300 is a compact soundbar that offers exceptional sound quality and comes with built-in voice assistants like Alexa and Google Assistant, providing a convenient and hands-free experience. This product review will highlight its design, features, sound quality, and overall performance.

The Bose Smart Soundbar 300 has a sleek and minimalist design. It is made primarily of plastic, with a stylish metal grille that wraps around the front and sides, giving it a modern and attractive look. With its compact size, measuring only 2.25 inches tall and 27.5 inches wide, it easily fits beneath most TVs and can even be placed between the legs of a 55-inch TV without obstructing the view. The build quality is solid and durable, ensuring long-lasting performance.

The Bose Smart Soundbar 300 offers several impressive features. It supports both Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity, allowing you to stream music wirelessly from your devices. Additionally, it has built-in voice assistants such as Alexa and Google Assistant, enabling you to control the soundbar and other compatible smart devices using voice commands. Furthermore, it supports AirPlay 2 and Chromecast Built-in, expanding the options for streaming content from various sources.

Sound Quality: The Bose Smart Soundbar 300 delivers impressive sound quality, considering its small size. It offers a slightly V-shaped sound profile, which works well for genres with more lows and highs, such as rock, pop, hip-hop, and EDM. The high-bass emphasis adds punch to the audio, while the treble peak enhances the clarity of voices and instruments. However, due to the lack of a dedicated subwoofer, the deep rumble in the low-bass common in bass-heavy tracks might not be fully experienced. Nevertheless, it is possible to improve the low-frequency extension by adding a compatible subwoofer from Bose.

Overall Performance: The Bose Smart Soundbar 300 offers an overall excellent performance, providing an expansive and rich sound that enhances both movies and music. It creates an immersive experience, especially when watching live sports or movies, with clear dialogue and noticeable improvements in sound quality compared to built-in TV speakers. It is worth noting that the soundbar comes with a remote control and offers bass and treble adjustments, allowing you to customize the sound according to your preferences.

In conclusion, the Bose Smart Soundbar 300 is an excellent choice for those seeking a compact soundbar with impressive sound quality. With its sleek design, built-in voice assistants, and Wi-Fi/Bluetooth connectivity, it offers convenience and versatility for various entertainment setups. While it may be pricier compared to some other small soundbars, its performance and features make it a worthwhile investment for enhancing your home theater or PC setup.



About Me

My name is Robert Callaway and I have been in the AV industry for over 30 years installing quality equipment for my customers.  I have started this blog to share my extensive knowledge to make sure you are happy with your AV purchases. 


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