Samsung is back with its 2020 soundbars lineup. One of them is the Samsung HW-Q800T, an upgrade to the previous year’s HW-Q70R. Both of them follow the same configuration, i.e. 3.1.2 and come with a bucket load of features. It also has an Amazon Alexa integration for your ‘assistant’ needs and comes with Wi-Fi support too.
Samsung follows the neutral sound profile to ensure that the soundbar caters to most genres relatively conveniently. Also present is the in-house Acoustic Beam and Q-Symphony tech for improving the surround sound experience. The Samsung HW-Q800T looks good too, but is it worth the $900 price tag?
Amazon.com is selling Samsung HW-Q850T now!
This is the Samsung HW-Q800T review to find out that and more.
List of specifications
|Product Dimensions||38.6 x 2.4 x 4.5 inches (Soundbar)
8.1 x 15.9 x 15.9 inches (Subwoofer)
|Weight||3.6 kg (Soundbar)
9.8 kg (Subwoofer)
|Wireless Audio Protocol||Bluetooth
|Audio Decoding Codecs||DTS Digital Surround
Dolby Digital Plus
|Connectivity||1 x HDMI In
1 x Optical TOSLINK – Audio
1 x HDMI Out
1 x micro USB (updates only)
- Wide soundstage
- Premium build
- Neutral sound with exceptional overall balance
- Lacks room correction
- The subwoofer is bulky
What’s in the box?
- Samsung HW-Q800T soundbar
- Wireless subwoofer (PS-WR75BB)
- AC power adapter
- 2 x AC power cords
- 2 x “AA” batteries
- 2 x Wall-mount brackets
- 2 x Screw-holders
- 2 x Screws
- 59-inch HDMI cable
- Remote control
- Wall-mount guide
- User guide
- 4 x Self-adhesive pads
Design and build
The Samsung HW-Q800T soundbar has been designed by the Audio Lab in the USA and follows a minimalistic design. It looks similar to HW-Q70T with black plastic covering the top and the front. The sides get a greyish accent, and the face gets a metal grille for added protection. The top houses the holes for Acoustic Beam and the placement is such that the TV above won’t block the sound flow.
The bar is 38.6 x 2.4 x 4.5-inches and weighs 3.6 kg, making it similar to its predecessor. Its width is suitable for 55-inches, but best compatible with 65-inches or more. On the upside, it isn’t very tall, making it easier to accommodate itself below your television screen.
The Korean giant also ships the soundbar with wall-mounting accessories giving you added functionality. Like most of the recent soundbars from Samsung, the HW-Q800T has two openings at the back for input ports, and there are universal holes underside for your wall-mounting exercise.
The Samsung HW-Q800T also has a wireless subwoofer, measuring 8.1 x 15.9 x 15.9 inches and weighing 9.8 kg. It can be placed anywhere in the room. The entire body is made of good quality wood, with thin fabric covering the sides and front.
The back houses a plastic port where you will find a pairing button and the power cable.
Overall, we have little to complain about the build of the Samsung HW-Q800T. It is minimalistic, functional, and gets the job done. It looks sleek and justifies the price tag it demands.
Samsung follows the tried and tested formula with the HW-Q800T soundbar. The front side of the bar houses an LCD screen, protected by the metal casing. The screen is small, accommodating only four characters at a time. It displays the volume level and other settings in use. It also houses a useful red light, which is visible when the user mutes the bar.
The top of the Samsung HW-Q800T bar houses four touch-sensitive buttons in a single array. The left one is for powering on/off the device followed by volume buttons, and the last one is a multifunction toggle for managing inputs.
The Samsung HW-Q800T package comes with a regular remote control. It is lightweight but a tad longer than we would have liked. It is not a universal remote, but you will find buttons for managing all the functions of the bar.
The Samsung HW-Q800T soundbar also supports the SmartThings app. The application is available on both iOS and Android app store and lets you manage the EQ, inputs, and play music. You can also control the volume levels via it.
The sound bar also has a Power Saving option which turns it off after 18 minutes of inactivity. It also has HDMI CEC allowing users to use the regular IR remote to manage its essential functions.
The Samsung HW-Q800T soundbar houses a decent selection of input ports. On the back of the bar, you will find an HDMI In/Out port, a Full HDMI In, an optical port, and a micro USB (restricted for updates and servicing only). It lacks the aux port meaning that you won’t be able to connect your PDA device via wires.
The subwoofer has a pairing button and connects wirelessly to the bar. It only has input for drawing power. The upward-firing speakers are embedded in the main bar, and the package doesn’t come with satellite speakers.
Speaking of wireless connectivity, it comes with Bluetooth (version unspecified) and Wi-Fi onboard. It is surprising to see Chromecast or AirPlay missing from the deck, but you can still connect your PDA devices and play content easily.
As far as support for audio codec goes, the Samsung HW-Q800T has HDMI eARC port enabling it to stream most formats with elan. You get support for Dolby Atmos, Dolby TrueHD, DTS-HD, DTS, Dolby Digital, DTS-HD MA, and 5.1 PCM via the port. It also has the ability to pass through 4K and HDR10 content, letting you connect your PC or console and visualizing in the intended quality.
The setup is perfect for people who want to play high-end games or stream lossless music, and the Atmos support should encourage movie lovers too. The optical port supports DTS and Dolby Digital, ensuring seamless connectivity with your Blu-Ray player.
One area where the Samsung HW-Q800T soundbar shines is the performance department. For its price, we barely have anything to complain about here, other than the missing room correction. The HW-Q800T is a 3.1.2Ch configuration.
The soundbar is amongst the first to come equipped with Q-Symphony, a feature for all the new Samsung QLED TV owners. It pairs up the TV speakers with the bar and uses them all for creating a more engaging sound.
It follows a neutral sound signature out-of-the-box and supports a lot of tweaks to suit your taste. It is an excellent soundbar for mixed usage. It gets loud enough, and we did not find any bother compression creeping in the playback. It has a better-than-average stereo frequency response to suit most content types.
Pair the loudness with excellent bass quality, and you have a recipe for success. The soundstage is as wide as the bar and has good focus and imaging. It was easier to locate the exact source of the sound, and the center channel helps in improving dialogue delivery.
The bar comes equipped with two upward-firing speakers and the Acoustic Beam tech to create a height impression, but these two don’t sound as good as the main speakers, resulting in an average height experience.
Even though it supports most codecs, its configuration isn’t capable enough to play stereo content without downmixing. It ends up sounding bass-heavy and forced, the only gripe that we could find with its performance.
Talking of sound enhancements, it is a pity that the Samsung HW-Q800T soundbar misses out on room correction. If you can get over it, the bar has support for dialogue enhancement, a graphic EQ with several presets and also allowing manual tweaking. There is support for bass and treble adjustment, and you can also manage the height level adjustment.
At a cent shy of $900, the Samsung HW-Q800T is a fantastic product. It has ample features for the junkie in you, and the overall sound is praise-worthy for a soundbar. Let us see how it stacks up against the competition –
Even though they are in the same price range, the Sonos ARC opts for a 5.0.2Ch configuration instead of 3.1.2 found in the Samsung HW-Q800T. It allows the former not to downmix stereo content and excel at surround sound, creating a more immersive content watching experience.
The Samsung HW-Q800T soundbar hits back with better sound output out-of-the-box and better handling at higher volumes. It also has an HDMI eARC port, and graphic EQ lets users better handle the sound output.
The Samsung HW-Q800T and HW-Q70T are a part of its 2020 lineup and matches each other in design and performance front. The latter has more emphasis on bass, making it better for “bassheads” and EDMs.
The former has a neutral sound, thereby catering to a broader spectrum. It also has a better subwoofer performance and is good at handling top volume.
The Samsung HW-Q800T is an excellent buy for most people. It has an impressive “maximum loudness”, capable of catering to large rooms or crowded places. It has sufficient bass, which is fast and deep.
The bar doesn’t handle surround sound the best, but it is acceptable given its choice of configuration and the fact that none of its competitors excel at it is a bonus. If you are looking for a bar that looks good, has an excellent build, and performs as well, the Samsung HW-Q800T is the one for you.
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