LG Launches 2021 U.S. Sound Bars
LG Electronics USA announced Friday availability and pricing as it begins the rollout of its 2021 Sound Bar lineup.
The five-model lineup, once again, has been engineered for the best combination of premium audio experience, design, control convenience and value, the company said
The new lineup also combines high-quality audio, easy connectivity, smart functionality and modern aesthetics to complement LG’s TVs.
This year’s LG Sound Bar models for the U.S. include the following: SP9YA ($996.99 suggested retail) – pictured at top – SP8YA ($798.99), SP7Y ($449.99), SPD7Y ($399.99) and SP2 ($179.99). All but the SPD7Y (available in June) are in stores now. Note also that LG said last year’s popular sound bar models: SN11RG, SN10Y and GX will continue to be available throughout the year.
New for 2021, LG Sound Bars incorporate the ability to leverage the AI Sound Pro feature offered on LG TVs. This enables audio processed by the TV to be played through the sound bar via “TV Sound Mode Share,” that will provide sound enhanced by AI Sound Pro processing in the TV to be presented as intended on the superior speakers and amplification in the sound bar.
LG said the 2021 sound bar models now offer “all of the same sound modes as the latest LG TVs, allowing users to easily switch between the sound bar and the TV using the TV’s remote.”
The LG SP9YA and SP8YA models support multiple voice assistant platforms — including Google Assistant, Amazon Alexa and Siri 1 — allowing control of the sound bar by the users voice control system of choice.
These models also add support for Apple AirPlay 2 , enabling streaming, device control, and sharing of various content types and sources directly from an iPhone, iPad, or Mac.
Many of the new models were engineered with the assistance of advanced acoutics company Meridian Audio to tune the sound for an authentic listening experience.
A new feature found on the SP9YA and SP8YA, both with Meridian Horizon technology, up-mixes two channel stereo content through Music Mode for an immersive, multichannel audio presentation, regardless of listener’s location in the room.
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Select 2021 LG Sound Bars support Dolby Atmos and DTS:X (SP9YA, SP8YA, SPD7Y) with up-firing speakers for 3D audio surround sound. In addition, connectivity has been made easier using HDMI eARC compatibility, supporting surround sound content with higher bitrate high resolution, including uncompressed Dolby Atmos audio from the TV, via a single HDMI cable.
In addition, USB playback and Bluetooth streaming provide additional options for accessing favorite and and music files for playback.
The SP9YA, SP8YA and SPD7Y models offer 4K pass-through capability using Dolby Vision support, maintaining the level of picture and sound quality from connected sources.
All 2021 LG Sound Bars but the SP2, also support Hi-Res Audio content for lossless music playback at up to 24bit/192kHz (SP9YA) or 24bit/96kHz (SP8YA, SP7Y, SPD7Y) for more dynamic and realistic reproduction.
This year’s AI features now extend to AI Room Calibration in models SP9YA and SP8YA. This provides automatic sound optimization tweaked to the specifics of the listening enviroment. LG said the technology leverages spatial awareness technology to measure the room’s unique characteristics and automatically adjust the sound bar’s audio output settings to get the most authentic tonal experience for the room characteristics. LG said the technology is based on deep learning algorithms that automatically adjust sound levels, depending on the genre of content.
LG’s sound bars also have been developed with the global environment in mind. LG said this extended to production processes, materials used and packaging.
“In its effort toward a sustainable future, LG is taking a more eco-minded approach to product development, packaging and shipping of its 2021 sound bars, designing the first audio products that received Eco Product Certification from Societe Generale de Surveillance (SGS), a respected provider of testing, inspection and certification services based in Geneva, Switzerland,” the company said.
Two of this years sound bars have replaced certain materials from a year ago with recycled ones featuring jersey fabric made of recycled PET bottles.
This year’s sound bar packaging is comprised mostly of recycled molded pulp with reduced EPS foam and plastic, the company said. Additionally, the packaging is designed in an “L” shape that will accommodate fitting more units in a truck to help reduce trips and cut down on CO2 emissions.
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By Greg Tarr
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