Samsung Reveals High-End Atmos/DTS:X Q Soundbars
Samsung Electronics formally launched this week its top two Dolby Atmos/DTS:X supporting soundbars for 2020 — the HW-Q950T and the HW-Q900T.
Both models also support the new Enhanced Audio Return Channel (eARC) feature from the HDMI 2.1 spec, enabling greater bi-directional data transfer capable of supporting advanced surround sound formats like lossless Dolby TrueHD and DTS HD Master Audio. Users can also connect source devices to an eARC-supporting television to send such formats out to the connected soundbar.
The eARC feature also promises greater multi-device inter-operability and more precise lip-sync control. Each model also has two HDMI inputs with support for 4K HDR10+ pass-through.
When they ship in August, the HW-Q950T ($1,799.99 MAP) and the HW-Q900T ($1,299.99)
Both models can be used with almost any television, but Samsung promises to deliver the best experience from them when connected to one of its new model 4K or 8K QLED TVs.
This year, Samsung has designed the soundbars and new QLED TVs with its “Q-symphony” control feature that activates and plays surround sound from both the TV and soundbar, for synchronized audio output from the combined speaker systems. This enhances the sense of 360-degree sound.
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Samsung said it worked in collaboration with its Valencia, Calif. Audio Lab to fine-tune the multi-dimension surround sound output from these models.
The new flagship HW-Q950T (546 Watts of power) provides support for up to a whopping 9.1.4-channel surround sound experience from 20 speakers, including two wireless rear up-firing speakers to complement the left and right wide channel speakers for an immerssive 3D audio experience with overhead effects.
Both models ship with wireless active-style subwoofers containing 8-inch speakers.
The Samsung HW-Q900T model (406 Watts of power) offers 7.1.4-channel output from 16 speakers. Wireless rear-channel speakers can be added to the HW-Q900T with Samsung’s optional SWA-9000S/XY speaker kit.
Samsung said it has also improved the soundbar’s cosmetic design. The height of both models was reduced to 69.5mm (2.73 inches) from previous models at 83mm (3.26 inches) to better fit below most TV screens in tabletop placements. Both models are also wrapped in Kvadrat textile for a more elegant appearance.
Both models also feature SmartThings App and Alexa voice service, allowing users to command their favorite music streaming services, like Amazon Music, Spotify, TuneIn, and iHeart Radio, the company said.
For music listening, a Tap Sound feature in both models allows the music from a smartphone to be sent directly to the soundbar.
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By Greg Tarr
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