What Is The Distance Between A TV And Soundbar?

A soundbar is a great way to improve the sound quality of your TV, and I’ve been learning the ins and outs of where to put one relation to my TV. Based on my research here’s what I found.

So, what is the distance between a TV and a soundbar? The ideal distance between your TV and your soundbar is around 1 foot (30 cm). The user manual for well-known soundbar brands such as Sony and LG doesn’t give a recommended distance but say to place it just below your TV and facing towards you.

There are a few reasons why this is the best place to put a soundbar, and there are few other things to consider when using a soundbar. Below, I’ll explain why this is the ideal place to put a soundbar, and other helpful tips about using a soundbar.

Where Is The Best Place For A Soundbar?

The best place for a soundbar is either mounted to the wall below your TV, or on a cabinet just below your TV. Technically, you can put a soundbar above a TV, however, this impacts the sound quality, and isn’t recommended. 

A soundbar projects sound in the direction it’s facing, and you want it to be level with your ears when you’re watching it

For example, most folks sit on the couch with the TV at about chest/head height.

Angling the Soundbar

In theory, you could mount your TV close to the ceiling, and angle it downwards. Then set up your sofa or chair so you’re lying down. If you did you’d want to angle the soundbar down to get the sound coming towards you.

That’ll make the sound the most realistic because the sound will be coming towards you, almost like it’s coming out of the screen.

If you put your soundbar above your TV the sound will be traveling in a direction over your head, and it’ll sound as if the sound is coming from above the TV. And that’ll make the audio and visual experience less immersive.

Other common scenarios:

Putting the soundbar behind the TV – Not recommended
This blocks the sound and you won’t be able to hear the soundbar very well.
Putting the soundbar behind where you sit – not recommended
That’ll make the sound and visuals appear to be unsynced. In-home theater systems there are certain speakers that can be placed behind you. But, a soundbar isn’t designed to be used this way.

How do I Mount A Soundbar To My TV?

Some soundbars come with a bracket, which you attach to the wall below your TV. Some brackets also attach directly to your TV.  Which is more convenient if you move it to a different room or move house. If your TV is sitting on a cabinet it’s best to lay it on the cabinet in front of your TV.

If your soundbar didn’t come with a bracket you need to do a bit of research to find one that’s compatible. Each soundbar is a different size. There are universal brackets which act like a shelf.

One that’s highly recommended is the Universal Sound Bar Brackets on Amazon.

However, before you get it’s a good idea to measure your soundbar, to see if it will fit comfortably. If it overhangs too much you run the risk of your soundbar falling off.

Also, if you do a search on Amazon for the specific make and model of the soundbar you have, it’s a good idea to get one that’s specifically designed for it.

If you haven’t yet bought one I created some recommendations for the best ones, based on my extensive research. 

I sorted through a tonne of soundbars and evaluated them against some specific criteria. Then created a shortlist of the best ones on the market. To read what I found are the best soundbars for the money, click here

Where Should A Soundbar Subwoofer Be Placed?

According to the user manual for well-known subwoofer brands like LG, it should be placed on the floor, to the side of your TV, but facing where you sit. Each room has a unique geometry that affects the sound in a room, so you’ll want to move your subwoofer around a bit to find the best spot.

Sonos, another quality subwoofer manufacturer, recommends in their subwoofer manual to place a soundbar subwoofer in line with your other speakers. Because this will blend the sound from your subwoofer with the sound from your other speakers.

And they recommend not putting it in a corner. They say this is because the sound waves will bounce off the walls and produce standing waves

One of the few things I remember from physics class, this is where two sound waves combine and you don’t hear one of the sound waves.

This means you don’t hear certain nuances in the sound, and it can also give the effect of not being as loud overall. As a result, you’ll have to use more power to get the same volume.

What Size Soundbar Do I Need For A 55 inch TV?

Any soundbar will work for a 55 inch TV. Soundbars are not made to match certain sizes of TVs and overall have about the same volume. Technically a soundbar that is bigger will produce more sound. However, this is usually only a consideration if you’re seated unusually far back from your TV.

A decent soundbar will give you enough volume regardless of which one you buy, so you won’t need to choose one over another based on the size of your TV.

Are Soundbars Worth It?

As you may be aware the trend for TVs is to get thinner and thinner. And the speakers that your TV comes with also had to get thinner to fit. But, smaller speakers don’t sound as good as larger speakers. So, separate speakers are needed to get the best possible sound for your TV.

As part of research into the best soundbars, I came across countless written reviews from people on Amazon that said the sound quality was so much better than the speakers that came with their TV. 

And they were very happy that they bought one. Because of this, in my opinion, soundbars are definitely worth it. 

Many of them also come with a subwoofer. A subwoofer handles the low-end sound and provides the much-loved bass – both by people who own them, and their neighbors.

But, all joking aside, a subwoofer extends the life of your speaker because the soundbar doesn’t strain itself trying to play the low-end frequencies. 

As you may be aware low-end frequencies are the bass tones, such as the impact of two heavy objects. For example, Optimus Prime colliding with a Decepticon in the movie Transformers, or an explosion in an action movie or TV series.

In Conclusion

To summarise, the distance between a soundbar and subwoofer should be around 1 foot (30 cm), and it should be placed under your TV and facing where you sit. This gives the best sound and the most immersive sound experience.

You can mount your soundbar directly to your TV or to the wall below your TV. If you have a subwoofer with your soundbar it’s best to put it on the floor directly facing you, and in line with your other speakers.

Soundbars are definitely worth it, based on the overwhelming amount of reviews I’ve read from customers who have bought them.


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