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Top cheap sound bars for 2017

Top five sound bars under £200 for 2017

Article 2 of 2

If you're willing to spend a bit more on a mid-range model but still don't want to break the bank, we've picked out the best sound bars that £200 can buy. 

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Most of the big sound bar brands produce models in the £100-200 price range. Going for a slightly more expensive sound bar rather than a complete entry-level model will bring you some added features, such as a wireless subwoofer and the ability to decode surround sound from a Blu-ray disc player.

We review sound bars that cost from as little as £30 all the way up to extravagant models that cost more than £1,000, and we've found that price often doesn't have any bearing on whether the product actually sounds good. Below, we pick out five sound bars that will really improve your home entertainment, each offering great sound quality for an affordable price.

Only logged-in Which? members can view our recommendations in the table below. If you’re not yet a member, you can get instant access by taking a £1 trial to Which?

Top five sound bars under £200

Lowest price (in stock) £255.00
Which? score 85%
Reviewed Mar 2016
Best Buy
Overall sound quality:
4 out of 5
Volume before distortion :
4 out of 5
Overall ease of use:
5 out of 5
Sound bar type:
Member exclusive
Separate subwoofer:
Member exclusive
Separate subwoofer wired or wireless:
Member exclusive
HDMI present:
Member exclusive
Digital optical (Toslink):
Member exclusive
Digital coaxial (SPDIF):
Member exclusive

This Best Buy model produces top-quality sound and is easy to use - and it's cheaper than many of its Best Buy counterparts. There are plenty of connection options, including a 3.5mm audio jack for piping in music and a Bluetooth connection if you want to do it wirelessly.

Lowest price (in stock) £159.90
Which? score 80%
Reviewed Jun 2015
Best Buy
Overall sound quality:
4 out of 5
Volume before distortion :
5 out of 5
Overall ease of use:
5 out of 5
Sound bar type:
Member exclusive
Separate subwoofer:
Member exclusive
Separate subwoofer wired or wireless:
Member exclusive
HDMI present:
Member exclusive
Digital optical (Toslink):
Member exclusive
Digital coaxial (SPDIF):
Member exclusive

This sound bar will treat you to thunderous bass and room-filling sound despite costing a fraction of the price of high-end models. It arrives with a wired subwoofer, but it does have Bluetooth for connecting wirelessly to your devices. It's easy to use too - we can't find much to fault with it.

Typical price £195.00
Which? score 80%
Reviewed Jun 2015
Best Buy
Overall sound quality:
5 out of 5
Volume before distortion :
5 out of 5
Overall ease of use:
4 out of 5
Sound bar type:
Member exclusive
Separate subwoofer:
Member exclusive
Separate subwoofer wired or wireless:
Member exclusive
HDMI present:
Member exclusive
Digital optical (Toslink):
Member exclusive
Digital coaxial (SPDIF):
Member exclusive

This reasonably-priced sound bar comes with a wireless subwoofer, so you won’t have to trail a cable around your living room to get sound to it. With Bluetooth connection too, you'll be able to play your music wirelessly from your smartphone or tablet. Sound is clear and exciting, making this sound bar a clear Best Buy.

Lowest price (in stock) £219.00
Which? score 77%
Reviewed Aug 2015
Best Buy
Overall sound quality:
4 out of 5
Volume before distortion :
4 out of 5
Overall ease of use:
4 out of 5
Sound bar type:
Member exclusive
Separate subwoofer:
Member exclusive
Separate subwoofer wired or wireless:
Member exclusive
HDMI present:
Member exclusive
Digital optical (Toslink):
Member exclusive
Digital coaxial (SPDIF):
Member exclusive

This sound bar comes in at an entry-level price, yet still manages to cram in features such as a wireless subwoofer and Bluetooth connectivity with easy NFC pairing. It's a slim, stylish unit and being able to hide the subwoofer away means that you'll cut down on clutter in your living room.

Lowest price (in stock) £139.00
Which? score 77%
Reviewed Jun 2015
Best Buy
Overall sound quality:
5 out of 5
Volume before distortion :
4 out of 5
Overall ease of use:
4 out of 5
Sound bar type:
Member exclusive
Separate subwoofer:
Member exclusive
Separate subwoofer wired or wireless:
Member exclusive
HDMI present:
Member exclusive
Digital optical (Toslink):
Member exclusive
Digital coaxial (SPDIF):
Member exclusive

It may be an entry-level model in its brand's range, but with a wireless subwoofer it's got a feature reserved for many more premium models. If you want to improve your TV sound on a budget the punchy, room-filling sound from this sound bar will be perfect for you.

Not found the product for you? Browse all of our sound bar reviews

And here's three cheap sound bars that aren't good value

The sound bars above will all make watching TV a far more enjoyable experience, but unfortunately the same can't be said of all the models we test. For every great-value bargain, there's a complete shocker out there somewhere. Our expert reviews are the most reliable way to separate the wheat from the chaff, and we've picked out three proverbial husks in the table below. 

Sound bars to avoid under £200

Lowest price (in stock) £69.98
Which? score 33%
Reviewed Jan 2017
Overall sound quality:
2 out of 5
Volume before distortion :
4 out of 5
Overall ease of use:
2 out of 5
Sound bar type:
Member exclusive
Separate subwoofer:
Member exclusive
Separate subwoofer wired or wireless:
Member exclusive
HDMI present:
Member exclusive
Digital optical (Toslink):
Member exclusive
Digital coaxial (SPDIF):
Member exclusive

The sound that spews from this model is nothing short of horrible. Avoid it at all costs. There’s practically no bass at all, which makes everything sound harsh and tinny. If you turn the volume up, you’ll be covering your ears to get away from the noise.

Typical price £170.00
Which? score 29%
Reviewed Mar 2016
Overall sound quality:
2 out of 5
Volume before distortion :
3 out of 5
Overall ease of use:
1 out of 5
Sound bar type:
Member exclusive
Separate subwoofer:
Member exclusive
Separate subwoofer wired or wireless:
Member exclusive
HDMI present:
Member exclusive
Digital optical (Toslink):
Member exclusive
Digital coaxial (SPDIF):
Member exclusive

This sound base doesn’t even have the excuse of being particularly cheap. You'd really be wasting your money by choosing this model - our expert listeners couldn't wait for it to stop blaring out music, and some said it gave them a headache.

Lowest price (in stock) £41.95
Which? score 20%
Reviewed Mar 2016
Overall sound quality:
2 out of 5
Volume before distortion :
2 out of 5
Overall ease of use:
1 out of 5
Sound bar type:
Member exclusive
Separate subwoofer:
Member exclusive
Separate subwoofer wired or wireless:
Member exclusive
HDMI present:
Member exclusive
Digital optical (Toslink):
Member exclusive
Digital coaxial (SPDIF):
Member exclusive

This model is one of the cheapest we've ever tested. It'll cost you less than a couple of vinyl records, but don't be tempted - this sound bar will make your music sound absolutely awful. It scores a woeful 10%, putting it in a class of its own when it comes to underachievement.

How we test sound bars

Every sound bar that goes through our test lab is put through its paces by our industry experts. We have decades of experience of designing and testing the latest home audio products, so can recognise a deal from dud. 

Before we start our listening test we make sure we've set each sound bar up to give its best-possible performance. Its position in your living room, audio settings and the overall volume level will all have a big effect on how good things sound. 

We test sound bars with a range of music, TV and film soundtracks to find out how they'll sound no matter what you're listening to. For more information on how we test, take a look at our 'how we test' page.  

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