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There are two things every TV owner should know. The first is how to disable the dreaded soap-opera effect that seems to be the default on all new TVs. The second is, your TV’s built-in speakers are either mediocre or downright terrible and should be replaced.
Don’t worry, you don’t have to rip open the cabinet and pry out those speakers; you just need to add a soundbar — basically an external speaker that provides more audio power and, just as important, points the sound directly at you instead of down or to the rear.
You could easily spend hundreds of dollars on one of these, but I’ll argue that you don’t have to. Even an inexpensive model can deliver a big improvement to your listening experience.
Like this one: For a limited time, and while supplies last, Amazon Prime subscribers can get the Kmouk 2.1-channel soundbar for $75 after clipping the on-page $20-off coupon. It normally sells for $110. (Non-subscribers can still use the coupon, but won’t get the added $15 savings.)
(No Amazon Prime? No problem: You can sign up for your free 30-day trial here. In addition to occasional extra discounts like this one, you’ll get free 1- or 2-day shipping on nearly everything.)
Why this sound bar over the countless other off-brand models out there? For starters, it incorporates a total of six speakers: four drivers and two subwoofers. The latter won’t give you quite the same bass response as a separate, standalone subwoofer, but it’s certainly better than none at all.
I also like that it has an alphanumeric LCD facing the front, one that lets you see which mode is selected, volume level and so on. Most budget soundbars lack that.
You can connect the Kmouk to your TV via Bluetooth, optical, HDMI or line-in. That covers all the important connectivity bases. What about controlling the sound bar’s power and volume using your TV remote? Although Kmouk says you can’t, there’s anecdotal evidence you can: At least a few reviewers report that it works. And it should, assuming your TV has an HDMI-ARC output and you plug the soundbar into it.
By the way, that Bluetooth option I mentioned? You can also pair this speaker to your phone or tablet and use it for music. So, yep, it’s like two, two, two speakers in one.
I haven’t yet tried it, but about 90 Amazon customers collectively rated it 4.4 stars. And I’ve tried similar soundbars; they’ve all made a big difference in overall TV audio quality. At this price, I definitely recommend giving it a listen.
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