Hello My Friend! Here Are the Top Soundbars You Can Get at Walmart

I know you‘ve been looking to upgrade your TV‘s wimpy built-in speakers without breaking the bank or sacrificing too much space. As your resident home theater geek, let me guide you to the 5 best soundbars available at Walmart for every budget. I‘ll decode all the technical jargon and highlight the standout models worth your money.

Soundbars 101 – What Specs Should You Look For?

Here‘s a quick primer on the key soundbar features and specifications so you know what actually contributes to better movie, TV, music and gaming audio:


This tells you the number of separate audio elements within a soundbar system. More channels allow soundbars to create a wider, more enveloping soundstage around your room:

  • 2-channel: Basic stereo separation. Budget-friendly but limited.
  • 3.1 channel: Adds a center channel for clear dialogue plus a subwoofer for bass.
  • 5.1 channel: Optimal balance with dedicated left, center, right front channels plus rear surround speakers and a sub.
  • Dolby Atmos enabled: Special upfiring drivers create virtual height channels for immersive overhead "3D" surround effects.


How your soundbar accepts audio signals from your TV and other devices contributes to sound quality:

  • Optical: Basic digital audio input that handles stereo to 5.1 surround sound.
  • HDMI ARC: Allows higher bandwidth signals like Dolby Atmos object data from your smart TV.
  • HDMI eARC: More advanced version of ARC with greater compatibility.
  • WiFi/Bluetooth: Allow wireless music streaming from your phone/tablet apps.

Audio Technology

Advanced codec support and audio processing features help soundbars perform closer to full-blown home theater systems:

  • Dolby Atmos/DTS:X decoding: Required for immersive 3D object-based soundtracks.
  • Virtual surround processing: Simulates surround effects from limited speakers.
  • Room correction: Auto sound calibration based on your unique room acoustics.


Soundbars range from under $100 to over $1,000. In general, better construction, more channels and brand reputation command higher prices. But soundbars of close specs can still vary in real world performance.

Now let‘s dive into the 5 best soundbars at Walmart I recommend…

1. Samsung HW-Q990B – Best Overall Immersive Sound

The Samsung HW-Q990B currently sets the benchmark for rousing Dolby Atmos and DTS:X surround sound performance from an all-in-one soundbar package. No exaggeration – pairing this bar with the rear speakers and subwoofer had me hearing swirling effects from movies I thought I knew by heart.

See, this system features actual upfiring and side-firing speaker drivers (11 channels total) to create fully immersive object-based audio with pinpoint directionality. The wireless tower speakers pump sound behind you like a cinema. Even streaming music live recordings in Dolby Atmos from Tidal, I felt transported right onstage thanks to the 22 discrete speakers enveloping me.

But here‘s what really makes the HW-Q990B shine – Samsung proprietary tech that automatically analyzes room conditions and content playback in real time to perfectly calibrate audio sweet spots based on your layout. Plus simple WiFi/Bluetooth connectivity and built-in Alexa support.

Yes, paying $1,400 demands serious enthusiasm. And a graphite 11.1.4 channel bar towering nearly 3 feet wide rules out smaller spaces. But if you have the room and budget, I haven‘t experienced better straight-from-the-box surround sound performance.

Samsung HW-Q990B Key Details:

  • Channels: 11.1.4 Dolby Atmos/DTS:X w/ rears & sub
  • Total Speakers: 22 discrete drivers (including upfiring)
  • Power: 458W total system
  • Inputs: 2 HDMI, optical, USB, WiFi/BT
  • Smart Features: Adaptive Sound, Alexa built-in

The Good:

  • Jaw-dropping 3D Dolby Atmos expansion
  • Massive, room-filling soundstage
  • Automatic room calibration
  • Multi-channel streaming integration

The Could Be Better:

  • It‘s enormously expensive
  • Setup/operation has learning curve
  • No Chromecast support

2. VIZIO M512a-H6 – Awesome Dolby Atmos Value Pick

If getting truly immersive Dolby Atmos/DTS audio performance is important but the Samsung blows your budget, my value pick is the VIZIO M512. Nearly $1K cheaper, you still get dedicated upfiring and surround drivers for serious height and space, bundled in an everything-included package with rears/sub.

I‘m talking floor-to-ceiling, wall-to-wall spacious audio that made movies feel more, well, cinematic – without costly receivers or streaming boxes. VIZIO even allows customizing the vertically projected channels to hit the right spots. While auto room tuning would be nice, presets like "Movies" and "Music" optimize on the fly with surprising bliss.

Connectivity hits the right marks as well – HDMI handles audio Return Channel from your TV, while Chromecast support makes wirelessly beaming Spotify, Tidal or podcasts easy from your mobile devicesso . And built-in Google Assistant ties expanded smart home controls all together if so desired.

Great performance without expanding your equipment rack or mortgage payment? Call that a win-win my friend!

VIZIO M512a-H6 Key Details:

  • Channels: 58” 5.1.2 Dolby Atmos soundbar
  • Total Speakers: 11 channels with upfiring rears
  • Inputs: 1 HDMI ARC, Bluetooth 5.0, Chromecast
  • Audio Formats: Dolby Atmos/DTS Virtual:X

The Good:

  • Quality Dolby Atmos immersion
  • Chromecast streaming integration
  • Complete 5.1 channels + sub package
  • Very fairly priced

The Could Be Better:

  • Virtualized rear vs. discrete channels
  • Smartphone app controls can be glitchy
  • No WiFi outside of casting

3. Samsung HW-Q800A – Best Bang-for-Buck Single Bar

If going truly surround overkill isn‘t a need or realistic for your space, Samsung‘s pared down HW-Q800A retains much of what makes the Q990B shine in a single sleeker, substantially cheaper bar. Ditching the massive rears and sub for a compact integrated unit, I was genuinely shocked by its wide, detailed and resonant reproduction.

See, clever psychoacoustic processing creates a startlingly real sense of enveloping height and space – just more mixed down. Samsung augments the vinyl-wrapped cabinet with its signature room analyzing Adaptive Sound tech along with always-on Active Voice Amplification to clarify muddled entertainment dialogue. All the connectivity essentials you‘d expect are present too including HDMI, WiFi and Bluetooth.

Add in the beefy wireless subwoofer for the cool $500 asking price and I‘m unsure you‘ll find more convincing 3D audio punch in a cost/performance-optimized package. Lacking distinct rear separation knocks it from top honors. But for rapidly leveling up TV and streaming immersion without overwhelming your space or gear rack, the Q800A impresses big time.

Samsung HW-Q800A Key Details:

  • Channels: 3.1.2 Dolby Atmos/DTS soundbar
  • Speakers: 2 upfiring, 2 midrange, 2 tweeters
  • Inputs: HDMI eARC, WiFi, Bluetooth, Alexa
  • Audio Formats: Dolby Atmos/DTS Virtual:X

The Good:

  • Big, immersive height/3D expansion
  • Adaptive room calibration
  • Beefy wireless sub included
  • Solid feature set for the cost

The Could Be Better:

  • Not genuine discrete surround
  • Samsung TV focused features
  • No Chromecast support

4. Sonos Ray + Sub Mini – Mighty Sleek Sound, My Friend

If trying to assemble a pile of gear has you wanting easier options, Sonos delivers massive, musical sound in their slick Ray soundbar minimalism nailed. Mounted beneath my wall TV and paired wirelessly to their petite Sub Mini cube, even my wife instantly appreciated the rich, balanced boost.

Sure, with only two-channel stereo separation missing true center and surround elements, it can‘t work magic transforming your living room into Madison Square Garden. However, a few distinct Sonos touches make the Ray feel notably smarter than cheaper competitors.

See, automatic volume normalization maintains consistent output across shows and music without constant fiddling. Turn on Speech Enhancement mode and dialogue is crisply clarified. Trueplay tuning even custom calibrates mid and high tones for your weirdly shaped den using your iPhone‘s mic (pretty neat trick!). Ultimately, the sheer uniform punch reaching every corner impresses. And knowing I can expand wirelessly room-to-room makes future whole-home coverage attainable.

If keeping cable clutter and equipment excess manageable ranks high on your wish list, the polished Ray checks off nicely.

Sonos Ray + Sub Mini Key Details:

  • Channels: 2.0 soundbar (2.1 with Sub Mini)
  • Speakers: 4 midrange drivers
  • Inputs: Digital optical audio only
  • Features: Speech Enhancement, Trueplay tuning

The Good:

  • Very cohesive, balanced audio reproduction
  • Super low profile size blends anywhere
  • Expandable into full Sonos ecosystem

The Could Be Better:

  • No Dolby Atmos height channels
  • No HDMI; optical input only

5. iLive ITB196B – My Budget Pick If Funds Are Tight!

If maxing credit cards to boost your TV‘s sound isn‘t realistic right now, even entry-level options like the compact iLive ITB196B prove better than suffering flat panels as is. A straight stereo affair missing fanciness doesn‘t mean its pair of analog amps can‘t drive music with ample pop.

Four midrange-tweeter pairs spread across the cabinet help notably increase breadth and clarity beyond expectations for under $50. Connecting digitally via optical or wirelessly through Bluetooth worked reliably for TV, movies and Spotify sessions. There‘s even standard aux inputs so temporarily plugging in old devices is fair game!

Downsides? Besides boring black plastic construction screaming budget status from across the room, absent WiFi limits playback controls and streaming freedom. The rudimentary remote leaves a bit to be desired too. But focusing where it counts most – actually making entertainment louder while adding definition and separation – the ITB196B bargain nicely fills that role anywhere needed.

iLive ITB196B Key Details:

  • Channels: 2.0 analog stereo soundbar
  • Speakers: 4 midrange drivers, 4 tweeters
  • Inputs: Digital optical, RCA, Bluetooth
  • Audio Codecs: 2-channel PCM Stereo

The Good:

  • Insanely affordable price
  • Surprisingly decent stereo audio kick
  • Optical + analog connectivity

The Could Be Better:

  • Unsophisticated simple design
  • Disappointing remote
  • No advanced features

Closing Thoughts From Your Home Audio Geek

I hope demystifying soundbar tech and highlighting killer models available at Walmart – whether online or their nearby store – helps you decide on the audio ascent best matching both your entertainment ambitions and reality check budget my friend.

You really can‘t go wrong leveling up TV sound with any decent bar. Yet investing just a bit more for true dedicated center channels, surround separation and premium codecs like Dolby Atmos yields an immersion I feel transports shows, movies and music into experiences offering way deeper emotional impact. It‘s just plain glorious!

But forget overthinking perfect channel counts or connectivity checklists. Even compact two-speaker upgrades made smart through room-adapting EQ and tuning algorithms that maximize their output potential bring joy. Ultimately, the best soundbar boils down to realistic performance goals plus whatever design or brand vibe keeps reminding just how sweet stepping up can feel long after buyer‘s remorse should have set in.

Here‘s to many nights settling into sublime home entertainment bliss my friend! Now streaming in richer, clearer audio impact guaranteed to take your breath away thanks to your newest electronic gear upgrade.

Let me know if any other home theater topics I can decode for your quest towards A/V nirvana!

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