Best Soundbar With Multiple HDMI Input

31 October, 2022 by Admin

HDMI soundbars are a great option to enhance your audio experience. Only mid and high-end soundbars consist of HDMI inputs. HDMI is the short form of High Definition Media Interface. 

HDMI inputs are the best option for getting unsqueezed, high resolution audio and video from an HD Television.If you are a gaming enthusiast or using Blu-ray Disc player or cable you better prefer using HDMI connection system.  HDMIs provide multiple device connectivity advantages.

Optical inputs are the alternative to HDMIs however, their performance is not like the HDMI ports and don’t support high resolution 4K audio. So, In this article you will find all you need to know about HDMI connections and the best available HDMI enabled soundbars in the market. 

HDMI connections have different types such as HDMI 2.0, HDMI 2.1,HDMI ARC and HDMI eARC. However, HDMI eARC and HDMI 2.1 soundbars are not available in large numbers but the HDMI 2.0 is a great choice and almost installed in all the HDMI enabled soundbars. The price may be a bit higher but you will get amazing sound performance that is for sure. 

Importance of HDMI connections

HDMI connections have a lot of advantages .

Connectivity: HDMIs offer you the connection with multiple devices. 

Expansion of the system: Rear speakers and subwoofers can be added to better the sound output and also you can upgrade your system and enjoy surround sound experience. HDMIs bring high fidelity in your sound output. 

Two in one option: This advantage can be better described with an example:Suppose, there are 3 HDMI inputs with your soundbar. If you connect your TV to the HDMI ARC,pair the subwoofer without wires and the rear speakers to another port the result will be that you can simultaneously operate both your TV and soundbar with just one remote using the eARC. This provides seamless sound with high clarity without any data loss. 

Keep note that, if your system consists of only one HDMI port then you may switch to the optical cable although it is not that highly recommendable. 

Top 7 Soundbars with Multiple HDMI Inputs

HDMI connections are preferred nowadays because of their providing high-resolution audio. Along with amazing sound experience, they provide a plethora of other advantages. Here, I discuss the best available soundbar with HDMI inputs. You can look at their features and easily select the one that matches your choice. 

Polk Audio MagniFi 2 Sound Bar

6.52 Mixed Usages
7.2 SOUND QUALITY
7.2 BASS ACCURACY :
7.3 AUDIO & VIDEO LATENCY:
3.9 AUDIO ENHANCEMENT FEATURES:
7 BUILD QUALITY :

Polk Audio Signa S2 is a 2.1 channel soundbar with wireless subwoofer. This system sounds bigger than its size. It shows good performance with movies and music. The bar can get quite loud without showing major distortion. You can easily connect 4k and HD TVs via HDMI or optical.Low ends are good and deep from 5.25” subwoofer. Choose one from music, movies, and night mode. Firstly, have a very short overview of Polk Audio Signa S2 soundbar:

Sound Quality:

  • Room-filling virtual surround: Despite being a 2.1 system, the Signa S2 boasts impressive virtual surround performance that creates a spacious soundstage for movies and music.
  • Clear and balanced sound: Users enjoy the natural and well-balanced sound signature, with crisp dialogue and good separation between instruments.
  • Powerful bass: The 5.25" wireless subwoofer delivers deep and impactful bass, enhancing the low-end experience for movies and bass-heavy music.
  • Loud without distortion: Even at high volumes, the soundbar maintains its sound quality without significant distortion, ensuring a clean and enjoyable listening experience.

Ease of Use:

  • Simple setup: The Signa S2 is easy to connect to your TV via HDMI or optical cable, making it suitable for users of all technical skill levels.
  • Intuitive controls: The soundbar comes with a straightforward remote control and clear on-board buttons for basic functions like volume and sound mode selection.
  • Seamless connectivity: Supports HDMI ARC for a single-cable connection with your TV and CEC for controlling both devices with one remote.

Additional Features:

  • Multiple sound modes: Choose from "Movie," "Music," and "Night" modes to optimize the sound for different content and listening environments.
  • Wireless subwoofer: Enjoy the convenience of a wireless subwoofer that eliminates cable clutter and provides flexibility in placement.
  • Affordable price: The Signa S2 offers good value for its price point, making it a solid option for budget-conscious users.

Keep in mind:

  • No built-in streaming apps: Requires streaming services to be accessed through external devices or connected apps.
  • Limited physical inputs: Only one HDMI and one optical port might not be sufficient for users with multiple wired devices.
  • Not true surround sound: While the virtual surround is impressive, it lacks the precision and directionality of true multi-speaker setups.

Our Verdict

Polk Audio Signa S2 is an affordable soundbar system. It has clearer vocals with VoiceAdjust feature. You can use it for news, podcasts, or TV shows. Movies sound good with decent soundstage, but it has average surrounds. Sound follows action on screen making action movies quite enjoyable. Consider this an entry-level soundbar or an upgrade over TV speakers.Here's a breakdown of when the Polk Audio Signa S2 would be a good choice and when you might want to look elsewhere:

Go for the Signa S2 if:

  • You're on a budget: This soundbar offers good value for its price, making it a solid option for budget-conscious shoppers.
  • You prioritize clear dialogue: The VoiceAdjust feature and overall sound signature make dialogue crisp and easy to understand in podcasts, news, and TV shows.
  • You mainly watch movies and enjoy basic surround sound: While not true surround, the Signa S2's virtual surround creates a decent soundstage and keeps up with movie soundtracks, especially action sequences with sound following the action.
  • You're upgrading from TV speakers: This soundbar will be a significant improvement in terms of sound quality and volume compared to built-in TV speakers.
  • Simplicity is key: The setup is easy, the controls are straightforward, and it avoids unnecessary bells and whistles, making it suitable for users who prefer a no-frills experience.

Consider other options if:

  • You're an audiophile: The Signa S2, while good for its price, lacks the audio fidelity and fine-tuning options of higher-end soundbars.
  • You want true surround sound: The virtual surround, while impressive, can't compete with the precision and directionality of true multi-speaker setups.
  • You need built-in streaming apps: The Signa S2 requires external devices or connected apps for streaming services, which might not be ideal for everyone.
  • You have multiple wired devices: Only one HDMI and one optical port might not be enough for users with numerous wired devices requiring connections.
  • You have a very large room: While it handles small and medium spaces well, the Signa S2 might struggle to fill a very large room effectively.

Ultimately, the decision depends on your individual needs and preferences. If you prioritize clear dialogue, basic surround sound for movies, and a budget-friendly solution, the Signa S2 is a compelling option. However, if you demand audiophile-level fidelity, true surround sound, built-in streaming, or wider connectivity, you might want to explore alternatives that cater to those specific needs.

PROS
  • Decent build
  • Affordable
  • Remote
  • Easy setup
  • Clearer vocals
CONS
  • No height effects
Where to Buy

Specification

GENERAL

Number of Channel 2.1 Channel
Placement Type Wall-mountable
Connectivity Type Wireless
Subwoofer Feature Separate Subwoofer
Rear Speaker N/A
Central Channel Speaker N/A
Audio Enhancement Features Yes
HDMI input/output Yes
Analog Audio In 3.5mm (Aux) Yes
Loudness High Volume ( > 92db )
Warranty 12 months Months

Connectivity:

Digital Optical Audio Input ( Toslink ) 1 Optical Audio Input
HDMI ARC 1 (shared)
HDMI Out None
Full HDMI In None
Analog Audio In 3.5mm (Aux) 1
RCA Ports No
USB Port None
Ethernet Jack No

Audio Quality ( Tested )

Dialogue & Vocal Accuracy Frequency deviation from target is less than standard error (3.4 dB ); which means soundbar is very good to reproduce dialog and instrumental music
Bass Accuracy ( for music, film scores, movies, and games) Soundbar 's Low-Frequency-Extension is more than 35 Hz. Which means It can reproduce the deep thump and rumble in the low-bass accurately.
3- Dimensional Sound Accuracy ( Sound Stage) audio seems to be coming from a more accurate pinpoint location
Total Harmonic Distortion ( Center Channel ) No Dedicated Center Channel Speaker. So, it can not produce sound quite as clear as 3.0, 3.2 , 5.1 or 7.2 channels Soundbar. But It has decent center performance to produce accurate audio and dialogue.
Surround Sound Imaging ( Rear Channel ) No dedicated or alternative channel for surround content. So it downmixes surround content to stereo.
Streo Dynamics ( Loudness ): Dynamic Range Compression @ Max Volume is little bit more than standard deviation (<2 dB) and maximum valume is over 92 dB SPL
Audio & Video Latency Here no visible latency via ARC (83 ms) and Optical (75 ms) but visuals difference may found via Full HDMI Input (N/A).

Audio Enhancement Features:

Digital Room Correction: N/A
Auto Volume Adjustment/ Night Mode: Yes
Equilizer Options: Presets
Bass Adjustment ( Thump & Punch of sound) Yes
Treble Adjustent ( Brightness and Clarity od Audio) N/A
Surround Level Adjustment: N/A
Virtual Surround Effect: N/A

Supported Audio Format ( HDMI ARC)

eARC Standard N/A
Dolby Atmos N/A
Dolby Digital N/A
Dolby Digital Plus N/A
DTS N/A
DTS: X N/A
Dolby True HD ( eARC only ) N/A
DTS- HD MA (eARC only) N/A
5.1 PCM ( eARC only ) N/A

Supported Audio Format (Full HDMI In' port ):

Dolby Atmos : N/A
DTS:X : N/A
Dolby Digital : N/A
Dolby Digital Plus: N/A
DTS : N/A
Dolby TrueHD : N/A
DTS-HD MA : N/A
5.1 PCM N/A

Audio Format Support ( Optical Port ):

Dolby Digital : Yes
DTS : N/A

Drivers Specs

Tweeter Size and Type : (2) 1
Midrange Size & Types: (2) 1.25
Woofer Size & Type :
Subwoofer Driver (1) 5.25

Build Material

Enclosure Ported
Finish The bar is made of plastic and there's a tight mesh fabric front side. The Subwoofer made from fragile-feeling melamine.
Color Black
Soundbar Width 35.4
Soundbar Height 2.0
Soundbar Depth 3.1
Subwoofer Width 6.7
Subwoofer Depth 12.3

Key Highlights:

  • 3 HDMI inputs including an HDMI ARC
  • Optical, AUX, and Ethernet ports
  • Chromecast feature for unlimited streaming from multiple apps
  • 4K HD, DTS, Dolby Digital, multiple drivers
  • 3D sound effects, deep bass, SDA technology

To talk about its design , it has a slim, aesthetic look with a height of 2 inches. So, it doesn’t occupy much space and can be placed on a stand or beneath your TV. You can mount it to your walls. 

One of the most prolific soundbars taking the HDMI inputs into consideration. The Polk Audio MagniFi Soundbar comes with 4 HDMI ports. It possesses 3 HDMI 2.0, one HDMI ARC with another HDCP 2.2.

It’s highly versatile in connectivity options. The connectivity specialization includes a Optical input, AUX input of 3.5 mm and an Ethernet port (RJ45). The best thing about Polk Audio MagniFi Soundbar is that it supports digital systems like Dolby Digital and DTS audio systems. 

The highly talked Chromecast feature incorporates a plethora of apps and enables you to enjoy unlimited streaming from the likes of Google Play, Spotify, Pandora, iRadio, YouTube and vice versa.  

Advanced Bluetooth connection availability means extraordinary pairing opportunity. You can either set it up in a single room or multi-room according to your need. The soundbar has a width measurement of 37.5 inches and the subwoofer that comes with it measures 8-inches. Deep bass is reproduced by the subwoofer that makes your sound quality seamless and crystal clear. Additionally, it is incorporated with the special feature of voice adjustment feature that cancels the background noise that leads to your noise free sound experience. 

The additional accessories that are key behind its enormous sound production are the four full range drivers and 2 superb tweeters. These blend in to provide you amazing sound with clarity and deep bass. The global standard 4K HD is something that makes it different to its competitors in the market. 

Multiple devices can be connected with the soundbar be it your PC, tabs, TV, smartphones or even the gaming consoles. 

It gives virtual height and 3D sound effects. Its SDA technology produces a room-filling sound.. Although it does not have dedicated Atmos speakers yet it gives an awesome audio quality.

The SDA technology that gives you an immersive sound experience with room filling quality and the 3D sound effects are its salient features incomparable to none. 

It’s a budget friendly soundbar that offers maximum features with low price. A complete package indeed. 

What We Liked

  • A very strong 8 inch subwoofer
  • Multiple devices compatibility
  • Unlimited streaming from YouTube, Spotify, Pandora
  • Infrared remote control
  • Elegant design

What We Didn’t Like

  • Dolby Atmos and DTS are not X supported

Nakamichi Shockwafe Soundbar:

7.66 Mixed Usages
7.4 SOUND QUALITY
7.8 BASS ACCURACY :
8.2 AUDIO & VIDEO LATENCY:
6.9 AUDIO ENHANCEMENT FEATURES:
8 BUILD QUALITY :
Specification

GENERAL

Number of Channel 7.1.4 Channel
Placement Type Wall-mountable
Connectivity Type Wireless
Subwoofer Feature Built-in Subwoofer
Rear Speaker Yes
Central Channel Speaker Yes
Audio Enhancement Features Yes
HDMI input/output Yes
Analog Audio In 3.5mm (Aux) Yes
Loudness High Volume ( > 92db )
Warranty 12 months Months

Connectivity:

Digital Optical Audio Input ( Toslink ) 1 Optical Audio Input
HDMI ARC 1 (shared)
HDMI Out 1 (shared)
Full HDMI In 3
Analog Audio In 3.5mm (Aux) 1
RCA Ports No
USB Port 1 USB Port
Ethernet Jack No

Audio Quality ( Tested )

Dialogue & Vocal Accuracy Frequency deviation is more than standard deviation (3.4 dB). But fair enough for small room.)
Bass Accuracy ( for music, film scores, movies, and games) Soundbar 's Low-Frequency-Extension is less than 35 Hz. Which means It can reproduce the deep thump and rumble in the low-bass accurately.
3- Dimensional Sound Accuracy ( Sound Stage) audio seems to be coming from a more accurate pinpoint location
Total Harmonic Distortion ( Center Channel ) It has dedicated center channel speaker and Total Harmonic Distortion of center channel @80dB is less than standard value(>0.7). So soundbar produce more clear and accurate audio of the dialogue in movies.
Surround Sound Imaging ( Rear Channel ) Dedicated Rear channel speaker produce discrete surround sound like tower speaker
Streo Dynamics ( Loudness ): Dynamic Range Compression @ Max Volume is less than standard deviation (<2 dB) and maximum valume is less then 92 dB SPL
Audio & Video Latency Here no visible latency via ARC (67 ms) and Optical (60 ms) but visuals difference may found via Full HDMI Input (34 ms).

Audio Enhancement Features:

Digital Room Correction: N/A
Auto Volume Adjustment/ Night Mode: Yes
Equilizer Options: Presets
Bass Adjustment ( Thump & Punch of sound) N/A
Treble Adjustent ( Brightness and Clarity od Audio) Yes
Surround Level Adjustment: Yes
Virtual Surround Effect: Yes

Supported Audio Format ( HDMI ARC)

eARC Standard N/A
Dolby Atmos Yes
Dolby Digital Yes
Dolby Digital Plus Yes
DTS Yes
DTS: X N/A
Dolby True HD ( eARC only ) N/A
DTS- HD MA (eARC only) N/A
5.1 PCM ( eARC only ) N/A

Supported Audio Format (Full HDMI In' port ):

Dolby Atmos : Yes
DTS:X : Yes
Dolby Digital : Yes
Dolby Digital Plus: Yes
DTS : Yes
Dolby TrueHD : Yes
DTS-HD MA : Yes
5.1 PCM Yes

Audio Format Support ( Optical Port ):

Dolby Digital : Yes
DTS : Yes

Drivers Specs

Tweeter Size and Type :
Midrange Size & Types:
Woofer Size & Type :
Subwoofer Driver

Build Material

Enclosure Ported
Finish It's a premium-feeling soundbar setup, the bar is made of premium-quality plastic and solid metal grilles to protect the drivers inside.
Color Black
Soundbar Width 45.6
Soundbar Height 3.5
Soundbar Depth 3.1
Subwoofer Width 9.5
Subwoofer Depth 11.9

Rating System

SOUND QUALITY 7.4
BASS ACCURACY : 7.8
AUDIO ENHANCEMENT FEATURES: 6.9
AUDIO & VIDEO LATENCY: 8.2
BUILD QUALITY : 8