AV Outfitters

The Best Multi-Channel Home Theater Systems in 2022

Tuesday, September 26, 2023

Does the best audio experience always require a complete surround sound system with three or more channels? By choosing the appropriate size setup you want will guarantee the best wide-ranging audio. A system that promises to be a 3.1 or 5.1 home theater system but falls short may disappoint you. Our acoustic engineers have examined the best multi-channel home theater systems to save time.

1. VIZIO SB46514-F6
  • Large subwoofer
  • Upward-firing speakers
  • Works with Google Assistant

See Full Review

2. Nakamichi Shockwafe Elite
  • Delivers a wider soundstage
  • Dual center channels for speech
  • Dolby Vision and 4K HDR

See Full Review

3. Klipsche Reference
  • Minimal satellite speakers that are easy to place on the perfect spot
  • Wireless subwoofer for an appropriate surround sound format
  • Clean sound and a decent bass

See Full Review

1. Rockford Fosgate P3D4-15

Best Multi-Channel Home Theater System

What we like:
  • 5.1.4 system
  • Large subwoofer
  • Dolby Atmos
  • Dedicated center channel for speech
  • Comes with necessary cables
  • Upward-firing speakers
  • Works with Google Assistant
Reason to avoid
  • The remote has no backlight
  • The remote is small
Model NameAtmos
Speaker TypeSurround
Connectivity TechnologyWi-Fi
Special FeatureSubwoofer

For the sound effects, it will add to your living room; the Vizio SB46515-F6 is fairly priced. Dolby Atmos, the home theater system’s highest quality for cinematic sound, is strengthened.

It is regarded as an actual surround sound system because it is a full 5.1 system and can offer broad sounds that fill the entire room. The powerful 10-inch subwoofer will also provide heavy-hitting bass notes to assist the speakers.

In order to ensure that you don’t miss a single word, the dedicated center channel will enhance speech and dialogue onscreen.

2. Nakamichi Shockwafe Elite

Runner up

What we like:
  • Dolby Atmos
  • 7.2.4 system
  • Dual subwoofers
  • Delivers a wider soundstage
  • Dual center channels for speech
  • Dolby Vision and 4K HDR
  • Supports Bluetooth
Reason to avoid
  • More expensive
  • Very small soundbar display
Speaker TypeSubwoofer, Soundbar
Connectivity TechnologyRCA, Optical, HDMI, Coaxial
Special FeatureSubwoofer

The Nakamichi Shockwafe is a fantastic choice for audiophiles and those seeking powerful audio. The Elite is a 7.2.4 system with surround speakers, dual subwoofers, and a soundbar for the most powerful bass ever.

You have more positioning options with the dual 8-inch subwoofers because they can even deliver bass from different parts of the room. The Elite’s 800-watt overall power rating allows it to offer full surround sound.

3. Klipsche Reference

What we like:
  • Minimal satellite speakers that are easy to place on the perfect spot
  • Wireless subwoofer for an appropriate surround sound format
  • Clean sound and a decent bass
  • High-quality aluminum tweeters
  • Keyhole mounts on satellites
  • Lightweight woofers with Injection Molded Graphite (IMG)
  • 2.4GHz connectivity on the subwoofer for premium sound
  • Linear Travel Suspension (LTS) tweeter that removes distortion
Reason to avoid
  • Need a good AVR that doesn’t come natively in the box
Model NameReference Theater Pack 5.0
Speaker TypeSubwoofer
Connectivity TechnologyWireless

Look no further if you want a fantastic surround sound experience that looks nice and costs almost nothing.

You’ll receive clear, realistic sound with strong bass from Klipsch Reference surround speakers, which have a small footprint.

They are the ideal option for any aficionado of home cinema systems because to their cutting-edge design and superb acoustics.

You can set up your theater wherever in your house thanks to the adaptable mounting choices, and the wireless subwoofer produces fantastic low frequencies for an immersive listening experience.

Consider purchasing the Sony STRDH590 AVR, which is the ideal addition to the system, to experience your favorite films and television shows like never before.

Sonos Multi-Channel Home theater system

4. Sonos

What we like:
  • Wireless freedom without having to compromise on sound quality
  • Works both as a true surround sound system and standalone
  • Effortless installation and melts in with the environment
  • Flexible and customizable, start with the soundbar, add surround sound speakers or the bass later on if you really need it.
  • 3D sound with Dolby Atmos
  • Voice control with Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant
  • Adjusts acoustics for your specific room for a unique sound
Reason to avoid
  • Entirely dependent on your wireless internet, doesn’t work without
  • Your TV needs to support HDMI ARC for the system to work
Model NameSonos Arc
Speaker TypeSoundbar
Connectivity TechnologyWi-Fi, HDMI
Special FeatureSubwoofer, Radio

With its wireless speakers that can be used practically everywhere in the home and even as full surround sound systems, Sonos has been sweeping the globe!

The Sonos Arc + 2x One + Sub system is a stunningly simple-looking and excellent-sounding combination.

I chose this device because I adore wireless technology.

The sound setup options offered by the Sonos app and “Trueplay” are what really make this surround sound system sparkle.

Without needing to switch speakers, it tailors the audio experience for your particular room, and you can actually tell the difference.

Additionally, you can use the back speakers in other rooms to fill the house with fantastic-sounding music if you eventually decide not to use the surround sound.

JBL 5.1 multi-channel audio system

5. JBL Bar 5.1

What we like:
  • An impressive 550w of total system power
  • 10″” wireless subwoofer delivers deep, thrilling sound
  • Built-in chromecast, airplay2 and bluetooth
  • Jbl surround sound brings an immersive virtual 5.1 sound experience for your tv without any extra wires or speakers
  • 4k pass-through with hdr 10 and dolby vision provides the best resolution
  • Now with alexa multi-room audio
  • Connector type: HDMI
Reason to avoid
  • Not consistent with movie sound
Model NameSonos Arc
Speaker TypeSoundbar
Connectivity TechnologyWi-Fi, HDMI
Special FeatureSubwoofer, Radio

The astounding JBL Bar 5.1 Surround provides the pinnacle of home theater enjoyment. With 550 Watts of power and a 10″ subwoofer, bring everything you see to life, whether it is the intense bass of an action movie, the suspense of a thriller, or the beauty of a nature documentary. You can access and control online material thanks to built-in Chromecast and Airplay 2, and Bluetooth ensures that the music you stream sounds fantastic as well. JBL MultiBeamTM technology produces incredible surround sound. More than 75 years ago, JBL began powering movie theaters all around the world. You can now utilize that strength at home.

The Ultimate Multi Channel Home Theater Buying Guide

How to Choose the Best Multi Channel Home Theater?

While certain speakers can be set up in stereo pairs with the aid of an app, Bluetooth normally can’t support multi-room configurations on its own. For multi-room audio, others can set up a wireless mesh network among several speakers. However, the outcome isn’t quite as powerful or high-fidelity as Wi-Fi multi-room audio.

  • The Type And Size Of The System
  • Price
  • Ease of Installation
  • Sound Quality

The Type and Size of The Multi-Channel Home Theater System

The size of your room will determine the kind of system you require. You’ll need a 3.1 or 5.1 system, or even a sound bar, if your space is smaller.

You’ll get just the right amount of sound to fill the space without becoming overbearing.

A 5.1 to 7.1 system or higher would be advised for larger rooms as it will offer additional depth and range.

Additionally, you should confirm that the system you select works with other equipment in your home, like your TV and Blu-ray player.

Measure the width, height, and depth of your space when it comes to size so you can get a system that will fit comfortably.


When it comes to gadgets, price is always a key factor. You want to ensure that you’re getting the best possible deal.


You might anticipate paying a little bit more for multi channel home theater than you would for regular speakers.

The enhanced, more immersive audio experience makes up for the additional cost.

I advise investing a bit more money in a system that will give you the best audio quality.

Your home theater is, after all, a significant component of your entertainment system and should be treated accordingly. Additionally, reinstalling is a hassle.

You should also think about your budget and the features you desire in a home theater system.

Do you prefer a system that can stream Netflix and TV shows over one that can also play DVDs and Blu-rays?

A soundbar will do, or do you want a full-on 7.1 surround sound system?

Ease of Installation

The ease of installation is one of the decisive criteria for any home theater system.


If you’re not tech-savvy, you should choose a plug-and-play device that is relatively simple to set up.

There are some multi channel home entertainment systems that require a little more involved installation process than the majority.

If you don’t take the time to carefully read and adhere to the directions, you can experience problems.

Sound Quality

It goes without saying that one of the most crucial aspects to take into account when buying a multi-channel home theater is sound quality.

After all, having a fantastic system is useless if the sound is subpar.

The sort of speakers being utilized should be taken into account when seeking for a system with excellent sound quality.

Front-firing speakers, which are positioned close to the front of the room, are used by some systems. This is fantastic if you’re looking for a more immersive experience because it puts you right in the heart of the action.

Other systems, like Dolby Atmos, employ upward-firing speakers. This is a fantastic alternative since it gives the listener a greater sense of height and space.

After deciding on the features you like, you can begin reducing your options by reading the theater systems described in this article. All of them are excellent alternatives and will work well for a range of demands and budgets.

Parts of a Multi Channel Home Theater System

Typically, a multi-channel home theater system includes the following components:


  • A receiver
  • Front speakers
  • Center speaker
  • Rear and surround speakers
  • Subwoofer

The receiver is the most crucial component of the system because it amplifies and decodes audio signals. You will connect all of your additional components there as well.

For the surround sound experience to be reproduced, the front, middle, and surround/rear speakers are crucial.

Low-frequency bass notes, which the subwoofer is in charge of delivering, greatly enhance your movie-watching and music-listening experiences.


For the best sound quality in your home theater, choosing the appropriate speakers is crucial. When making your decision, keep the following in mind:

Consider where you’ll be placing your speakers first. Larger speakers are required to fill a large room with sound.

On the other hand, if your room is small, you’ll only need a soundbar or smaller speakers.

Second, think about the kind of sounds you want to hear. You’ll need to buy surround sound speakers if you want audio that sounds like a movie theater.

A pair of front speakers will work nicely if all you need is something simpler.

Last but not least, before making your purchase, take sure to review the specifications of each speaker.

Make sure that each speaker’s wattage and impedance are appropriate for your receiver or amplifier.


Any excellent home entertainment system needs an AV receiver. It serves as the connecting element between all of your other devices, enabling you to manage them all from a one location.

It’s crucial to take your system’s channel requirements into account when looking for an AV receiver. Five channels would be required for the speakers in a 5.1 system, and one channel would be required for the subwoofer.

You should also think about the receiver’s power output, decoding abilities, and availability of an HDMI input/output.


Make sure you purchase high-quality interconnects and speaker wires when purchasing these components. By doing this, you can be confident that your home theater system is producing the greatest sound possible.

When selecting interconnects and speaker wires, keep the following points in mind:

The wire’s gauge: The thicker the wire, the lower the gauge. Wires that are heavier are better at carrying more power and are less prone to cause signal distortion.

In terms of insulation, PVC and polyethylene are the two most common forms. PVC is less expensive but may not be as good at blocking interference. Although polyethylene is more expensive, it is more robust and better at reducing interference.

The longer the wire, the more opportunities there are for interference. For the finest sound quality, try to keep your wire lengths as short as possible.

Types of Multi-Channel Home Theater Systems

There are numerous home entertainment system varieties to pick from. You must determine what will serve your needs the best.

There are two types of multi-channel home theater systems:

  • Surround Sound System: This system reproduces surround sound and contains five or more channels. It’s ideal for gaming and viewing movies.
  • Sound bar– If you want greater audio but lack the space for a surround sound system, a sound bar is a terrific alternative. They come in a range of sizes and costs.
  • Home theater in a box (HTIB): An HTIB system is ideal for people who want all of their needs met in a single unit. A receiver (AVR), front speakers, mid speakers, a subwoofer, and rear speakers are typically included.

Multi-channel home entertainment systems are often categorized based on how many speakers or channels they have.

2.0 and 2.1 Multi-Channel Home Theater Systems

Anyone looking for high-quality audio on a tight budget may consider a 2.0 stereo system.

Typically, this kind of system consists of two speakers—one for each channel—along with a subwoofer (making it 2.1) to handle the lower frequencies.

Small spaces benefit greatly from this design since it may offer adequate coverage without being overbearing.

3.1 Multi-Channel Home Theater Systems

Similar to a 2.1 channel system, a 3.1 channel home theater system has an additional center channel for movies with clearer language.

5.1 Multi-Channel Home Theater Systems

The most prevalent form of surround sound is 5.1, which has five channels: left, right, center, left surround, and right surround. This is ideal for watching movies or TV shows and for simple home theater setups.

A 7.1 channel system would be a better option if you want an even MORE immersive experience.

7.1 Multi-Channel Home Theater Systems

Two additional channels, known as Dolby Atmos or upward-facing audio channels, are included in 7.1 surround sound.

This is excellent for larger rooms and delivers an immersive experience that must be had.

Final Thoughts

The best way to recreate the theatrical experience at home is with a multi-channel home theater.

An immersive audio and visual experience may be had with a multi-channel home theater, whether you’re a movie enthusiast or just want to watch TV.

I believe I’ve compiled a list of the very best multi-channel home theater systems available after conducting extensive study and testing several sound systems.

I thus hope that you found this post useful, whether you’re looking for a new multi-channel home theater or just want to learn more about them.



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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