The LG S80QR is an entertaining wi-fi encompass sound system with a neat trick in its upfiring centre channel, although when it comes to providing a real Atmos efficiency, it falls brief.
- Entertaining encompass sound
- Upfiring centre helps with dialogue
- Seamless wi-fi connection
- Atmos and DTS:X help
- Flat Atmos efficiency
- Satellites require a wired connection
Object-based audioHelps each Dolby Atmos and DTS:X
Upfiring centre dialogueCentre speaker fires dialogue upwards for higher readability
Hello-Res audioHelps information as much as 24-bit/96kHz
The issue about Dolby Atmos soundbars is that they will’t produce a real immersive expertise with no pair of encompass audio system.
They’re all nice at creating a large and tall soundstage, however Dolby Atmos (together with DTS:X) is all about making a hemisphere of sound, one which feeds from the entrance to the again and vice versa, and that’s laborious labour with out audio system to fill in what’s behind the listener.
With the S95QR sitting on the high of the corporate’s soundbar providing, LG’s step-down soundbar system within the S80QR appears to be like to treatment this headache by together with rear audio system as a part of the bundle.
- Relatively drab look
- LCD show
- Wired encompass audio system
The LG S80QR is a utilitarian piece of equipment, constructed to not appeal to consideration. The one concession to type is a gray Jersey acoustic cloth that wraps across the midriff of each the primary unit and encompass audio system, and when matched with the gunmetal gray end, this can be a soundbar system intent on fading into the background.
On the primary unit is an LCD show (in a position to present 5 characters) that neatly disappears behind the acoustic cloth when off.
The place issues get distinctive is the motive force association on the primary unit. The S80QR has three upfiring audio system that increase sound in the direction of the ceiling, however solely two are relevant for Dolby Atmos sound. The centre drive unit (formed like a hoop) is reserved to present dialogue a lift.
The encompass audio system are wired, related to a wi-fi receiver that synchronises the rears with the primary speaker and wi-fi subwoofer. When the sunshine goes inexperienced, all of the audio system are in concord, when it reveals crimson then both it’s off or there’s a connection challenge. There’s no upward-firing factor to those audio system as there may be on the flagship S95QR; the feeling of top is supplied solely from the entrance.
The surrounds have a small footprint, slight sufficient to perch on speaker stands or furnishings. The wired cables present sufficient leeway to unfold throughout a big room although the downside is trailing cables. The 8-inch wi-fi subwoofer is a beast, finest served when positioned not removed from the primary unit.
Connections are hidden inside a recessed space on the primary unit, comprised of an HDMI enter and output (for including a supply and connecting to a TV respectively), digital optical and USB port. Wall mounting is feasible, a bracket and screws for the primary unit are included although fixings are offered individually. There are some noteworthy inexperienced credentials to notice too, because the Jersey cloth on the primary bar is produced from reclaimed plastic bottles.
- Numerous connectivity choices
- No 4K 120Hz passthrough for gaming
- WOW Synergy synchronisation with LG TVs
Like with its TVs, LG has squeezed out an assortment of options that make the S80QR a succesful and versatile (no less than on paper) soundbar system.
Its HDMI enter helps pass-through of HDR10 and Dolby Imaginative and prescient, nevertheless HDR10+ will get the chilly shoulder and there’s no 4K 120Hz for recreation consoles. though the LG S80QR can declare HDMI VRR and ALLM help.
Alexa and Google Assistant characteristic, however neither are in-built, which requires the S80QR to be related to a tool that helps both for voice operation.
Chromecast, AirPlay 2, Spotify Join, Tidal Join (with MQA help) and Bluetooth 5.0 supply choices of getting audio to the S80QR, whereas format compatibility covers all issues Dolby and DTS, and there’s Hello-res audio compatibility as much as 24-bit/96kHz.
Sound modes are too quite a few to checklist however of most curiosity is IMAX Enhanced, AI Sound Professional, Clear Voice and Music, the latter developed by LG’s long-term audio associate Meridian.
A.I. Room Calibration robotically assesses a room’s acoustic properties by utilizing the bar’s inside microphone however pre- and post-calibration, although I can’t hear a lot of a distinction with it enabled.
WOW Synergy is LG’s tackle Samsung’s Q-Symphony, and it gives higher integration with LG TVs, working in live performance to develop the soundstage together with sharing the identical interface to make it simpler to make use of each TV and bar. Add the WOWCAST dongle and the TV can transmit audio to the soundbar, together with Dolby Atmos soundtracks.
Sound High quality
- Upfiring centre elevates dialogue
- Not likely a hemisphere of sound
- Punchy subwoofer
Arrange takes about ten minutes to place, join, and ensure every thing is up and operating. As soon as performed, my first impression is the LG SQ80R simply delivers a giant soundstage with the rears filling the house behind me. The query is whether or not the S80QR looks like an Atmos encompass sound system and on that matter, I’d say no.
This 5.1.3 system mated to 620W of energy doesn’t present an ideal sensation of top with Atmos and DTS:X tracks. The wet soundscape of Blade Runner doesn’t obtain lift-off within the immersive sense, hardly ever sounding as if it’s being directed from above or unfold across the listening house – the S80QR sounds much like a regular 5.1 system.
I’m, nevertheless, impressed by the centre upfiring speaker and the enhance it offers to dialogue. LG calls it a ‘world first’ for a soundbar, and in movies resembling Tenet and Dune (which take fairly a particular method to audio) dialogue is served properly.
Kat’s dialogue within the catamaran sequence from Tenet is extra intelligible and fewer encumbered by the remainder of sound design. One other instance is Girl Jessica’s recitation of the Litany in opposition to Concern in Dune, an intense and loud scene however one the LG sifts via the noise to protect most of the dialogue.
There was just one sentence I couldn’t make out, and I discovered the default setting for the centre channel to be on the conservative aspect. Push it in the direction of ‘+6’ and dialogue turns into clearer and sits on the display screen even higher, although the soundbar doesn’t venture dialogue in the direction of the listening spot.
The soundstage the S80QR produces is large and enveloping, particularly with the rears filling the house behind. When Dr Unusual casts a spell in Spider-Man: No Approach Dwelling, I might hear the spell transfer from the entrance to the rears and round within the listening place in a seamless method.
The bridge scene the place Peter Parker first makes acquaintances with Dr Octopus options a number of impression and punch to the motion, some ‘crunchy’ element to the results as Octopus’ arms rip into vehicles, in addition to a weightiness to the vehicles as they’re flung throughout the freeway.
The S80QR places in an identical efficiency with DTS:X soundtracks, with American Gangster delivering large, deep bass. Vocal readability is nice (higher after adjustment), and there’s a big sense of house as results are positioned within the entrance and rear audio system. There’s a number of element to select up and a strong stability between music, dialogue, and results – I don’t get the sense that one is stepping on the toes of the opposite.
Panning of results from the entrance to the rears is nice, and motion throughout the soundstage is tracked properly with readability and strong precision. Once more, there’s no actual sense of overhead results, so whereas I discover the LG SQ80R participating, I’ve heard different soundbar techniques (particularly from Samsung) that supply a greater sense of atmosphere with Gangster’s DTS:X monitor.
Dynamism is parlayed properly in a number of scenes I view. The fights in Scott Pilgrim vs the World explode into life with adequate weight and impression (the bass is somewhat exaggerated at instances), and in Netflix’s The Dig, the LG proves to be a dynamic performer, capturing the swells of Stefan Gregory’s rating to punctuate the emotional moments in a means the dearer one-box Devialet Dione doesn’t.
With customary tracks the LG places in a nice efficiency. Raiders of the Misplaced Arks’ 5.1 monitor gives an expansive stage, good dynamics, and loads of heft (such because the lightning strikes as Indy descends into the Map Room). Vocal intelligibility is nice, treble is sharp however not grating.
Streaming Business’s 2.0 stereo monitor on iPlayer and the main target is on the entrance audio system, besides, dialogue is of course reproduced for a strong efficiency.
There are a number of sound modes to select from in Sport: Bass Blast, AI Sound Professional, Customary, Music, and Cinema. The AI mode is healthier than earlier LG soundbars I’ve examined, much less emphatic in its bass supply and fewer intense however it does no less than ease up on the sibilance and overly crisp tone of earlier than for sound that’s pure and weighty.
Switching to music and a Spotify Join stream gives readability, although largely the efficiency isn’t essentially the most musical or particularly dynamic with Aaliyah’s Extra Than a Girl. There’s a ceiling to the quantity – at stage 17 it will get too loud and sounds strained. Readability throughout the frequency vary is nice although the LG’s sense of dynamism is somewhat too flat to get the juices actually flowing.
Do you have to purchase it?
You wish to hear what’s being stated in your favorite films: The upfiring centre channel helps elevate dialogue up above the fray, and somewhat adjustment to the settings works wonders for difficult movies.
Dolby Atmos is the rationale you’re getting it: Atmos is about making a believably immersive bubble of sound above the listening space, and the LG S80QR doesn’t obtain that sense of scale.
If you’d like a Dolby Atmos/DTS:X wi-fi sound system, the LG S80QR doesn’t present the peak channels to supply 3D immersive sound.
The upfiring centre works properly as soon as its ranges have been adjusted, and the bass is highly effective; the rear audio system fill within the house behind for a cinematic efficiency. The LG is an efficient however not nice system, the Samsung HW-Q990B is a greater, however dearer various.
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We take a look at each soundbar we evaluation totally over an prolonged time period. We use trade customary assessments to check options correctly. We’ll all the time inform you what we discover. We by no means, ever, settle for cash to evaluation a product.
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Examined for greater than every week
Examined with Dolby and DTS soundtracks
The S95QR has extra energy and extra channels of sound, with rear upfiring audio system to supply top channels for Dolby Atmos and DTS:X audio
Sound Bar Channels
Entrance Speaker (Dimensions)
Audio (Energy output)
1000 x 135 x 63 MM
Two 20mm Silk Dome, two 52x99mm woofer, 2-inch woofer centre; two 3-inch woofers, 8-inch woofer
1000 x 63 x 135
HDMI enter, HDMI output, Optical, USB
Works with Alexa, Works with Google
LPCM, Dolby TrueHD, Dolby Digital, DTS-HD Grasp Audio, DTS Digital Encompass, Dolby Atmos, Dolby Digital Plus, DTS:X, DTS-HD Excessive Decision, AAC / AAC+,
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Dolby Atmos is an object-based audio format. It expands on 5.1 and seven.1 soundtracks by including overhead channels. Sounds are known as “audio objects”, of which there may be as much as 128 audio channels, and these ‘objects’ may be precisely positioned inside a 3D soundscape. This enables soundtracks that help the know-how to put sounds above and across the listener with appropriate equipment.
DTS:X is an object-based audio format created in 2015 for the house. The premise is much like Dolby Atmos in that it creates a hemisphere of sound that’s extra lifelike and pure in its presentation.