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6 posts

Wannabe Geek
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Topic # 180984 28-Sep-2015 17:39
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At present I have a Samsung 50" TV (UA50F6400AMXRD) connected to a very old Samsung AV system (sorry not sure of the specifics) in an apartment.

I'm planning on mounting the TV to the wall and swapping to a soundbar mounted below the TV using the main TV bracket, so I'm looking for a flat (not curved) black soundbar.

I initially looked at the Samsung HW-H750 (supposedly the valves added a richer sound) only to find that it is EoL (End of Line) and only available in silver (not ideal as my TV is black). Side Note: Samsung appears to use H/J in the name to signify the year and the last digit to signify the colour e.g. F750 = 2013 model in black, H751 = 2014 model in silver.

I then looked at the newer 2015 range (which sadly doesn't include the H750) and tried for the HW-J650.....only to be told these too were unavailable in black (HW-J651) even though they (and companies selling Samsung) list the J650.

When I got in contact with Samsung they indicated that "We have no intention of brining [sic] in a black 4.1 soundbar to NZ, at all (including the K750). Your only option is the J450 (2.1 black soundbar) if you want to buy locally.  The J650 is only available overseas." This has resulted in a bit of head scratching for me.

1. Am I being too fussy? Is the J450 still a good sound system? I wanted to get a system such as 4.1 to make sure the voices vs. explosions in moves aren't swallowed up (or the volume doesn't need to be adjusted up/down constantly to avoid annoying the neighbours).

2. I was looking at the Samsung range as I had hoped to take advantage of the CEC/AnyNet ability to pass through commands (especially turning on/off when the TV turns on/off - including a little Rasplex media server)...but are other brands out there that integrate as smoothly?

3. Samsung indicated the J650 was available overseas. Is there any advice regarding who/where to look when importing? Personally I was leaning towards Australia due to (hopefully lower) shipping cost and identical plugs etc.

4. Side question....are grey TVs really that overwhelmingly popular that black is no longer wanted by anyone? I've never been fashionable but I must admit that trend escaped me completely. (Yes, I also thought about getting a grey soundbar and attempting to paint it black but... with the inbuilt screen in the soundbar and my complete inexperience this sounded like the start of a warning/horror tale told to others in hushed tones).

Thanks for any suggestions/ideas.

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2895 posts

Uber Geek
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  Reply # 1395924 28-Sep-2015 17:51
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What's wrong with another brand? Black soundboard that can be wall mounted are in abundance. HQ brands offer some awesome sounding systems.

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6 posts

Wannabe Geek
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  Reply # 1395933 28-Sep-2015 17:58
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I was mainly looking at a Samsung to take advanatage of CEC/Anynet functionality (control everything easily through a single remote) but if the other brands integrate smoothly then they're definitely an option (as noted in 2).


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Uber Geek
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  Reply # 1396052 28-Sep-2015 20:05
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If the valves offer a 'richer sound' in the Samsung soundbar, I never heard it!
Don't worry about HDMI CEC functionality, a majority of soundbars can be trained to accept your TV or set top box remote control for volume and power. Meaning your TV remote could raise or drop the volume.
This means your choices for soundbars goes through the roof, many of which will out perform the Samsung's sonically.

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Uber Geek
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  Reply # 1396066 28-Sep-2015 20:31
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I run a Panasonic HTIB sound system off a Samsung TV and the "Anynet" function works perfectly - I hardly ever touch the sound system remote

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Wannabe Geek
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  Reply # 1396101 28-Sep-2015 20:58
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Excellent. Thanks for that. If other sound bars happily turn on/off and alter the volume with a single remote then my options are much better, thanks.
Any recommendations for a 4.1 soundbar/sub?
What should I look for, or is working for you?

227 posts

Master Geek
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  Reply # 1396118 28-Sep-2015 21:23
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Here's a deal

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Uber Geek
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  Reply # 1396120 28-Sep-2015 21:27
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Well, to start with, 4.1 is a piece of marketing fluff, much like the valves making it sound 'warmer'.
It's a soundbar that's trying to simulate surround sound + a sub.
Almost every manufacturer seems to try this trick to be fair, some better than others, but for the most part, if your sub doesn't come with a decent calibration microphone and accompanying software, your results may be average. Yamaha pioneered the technology, but their surround sound emulating bars get 'good' a lot further up the chain.
Even then you require a complimentary room for decent results.

Basically, TV companies seldom make good sound systems. Often they're aiming for the price conscious part of the market, not the 'sounds great' segment. Try listening to the audio brands and see what you think of their performance.

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Wannabe Geek
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  Reply # 1396535 29-Sep-2015 12:14
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Scup - Thanks, for the idea, I'll expand the search radius (although I'm not sure what you mean by HQ).

Shk292 - Thanks, the HTIB is a larger than what I'm after but it's a relief to hear the AnyNet functionality works.

Esawers - That's a nice looking deal, and a low price, but sadly it can't be mounted below the TV (it appears to require its own shelf).

Dunnersfella  - Thanks, the search begins anew. I'd not thought of Yamaha but I'll start looking at it now (YSP-1400/2200 or YAS-152/201 seem to be available in NZ). Plus supposedly the Harman Kardon SB26 seems to have good reviews.

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Uber Geek
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  Reply # 1396543 29-Sep-2015 12:19
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You're correct re: mounting the Samsung '4.2' system from NLeeming. It's a soundboard, not a soundbar... they just haven't got their web info right.

These are the soundbar models available in NZ from Yamaha.

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Wannabe Geek
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  Reply # 1396668 29-Sep-2015 15:36
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Thanks Dunnersfella, I'd not heard about that shop, I'll give them a go.

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Uber Geek
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  Reply # 1396744 29-Sep-2015 18:13
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It's not a shop, it's the importer for Yamaha audio in NZ...

You'd still want to go into your local audio store / Harvey's.

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Uber Geek
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  Reply # 1396750 29-Sep-2015 18:41
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For the money, this is a damn good unit, and would be what I would buy if I was looking for an affordable soundbar. One of the few Philips products I'd buy (along with baby monitors and air fryers!).

Provides actual not simulated surround when you want it due to wireless rear speakers that can be just clipped off. Of all the units I listened to as available from the main retailers this was the one I was most impressed with, sound wise. Has bluetooth, ARC, DD etc.

Didn't think anything of the Sony soundbars or those from Samsung, including those with valve amplification.

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