26 January 2016

REVIEW: Edifier B3 Soundbar

B3 or not B3...

New TV? Yes, the picture might be incredible, and yes it might be able to read what mood you're in and suggest a show to cheer you up, but how is the sound? TVs might have gotten thinner and cleverer these days, but the quality of the sound they produce has yet to catch up with the picture. What you need is a soundbar to complete your home cinema set up, and we've found a pretty good on. We review the Edifier B3 soundbar.

Your headlines here are that the B3 Soundbar is equipped with four speaker units and two tweeters, and can be connected to your TV, DVD, and game consoles via a multitude of ways... including Bluetooth. This means that as well as serving your TV watching habits, it can also be used as a dedicated Bluetooth speaker for your phone, tablet, and laptop. Nice. But for wiring it up for good, there's an optical input, coaxial, RCA Line In, and a good ol' fashioned auxiliary

In cross section the B3 looks like a chubby triangle, which actually give it a lot of stability when placed on a flat surface. It can also be wall-mounted should you wish, and Edifier have included all the gubbins you'll need to do so relatively easily. The whole thing isn't too heavy so there's no need to worry about it dropping off the wall under your telly and killing the cat, and at exactly one metre wide it isn't too big.

Before we get onto how it actually sounds, one quite clever thing to point out is the standby function. The B3 knows when it hasn't been used for ten minutes and so shuts itself down. This not only saves you power, but also extends the life of the unit, and as gadgets tend to use just as much electricity when on standby mode as when they're actually being used, the planet ain't complaining about this ability, either.

We first fired ours up along with a selection of shows on Netflix while the soundbar was connected to the TV via Bluetooth. As expected, the wireless stream of sound was flawless and lagless, and we were glad to hear that conversational vocals were rich, deep and clear. All other sounds were strong and lacked that weird empty quality that thin TVs tend to make, while the bass was exceptional.

We also connected it up via the included optical cable and found the sound to be just as good. The true advantage to so many connection options is that a number of different inputs can be permanently connected, negating the need to reach behind the soundbar every time you want to play a game, or use the DVD player. Needless to say, no matter what we tried it with, the sound reproduction was complex, clear, and powerful.

A well-designed speaker with some nice clever features, the Edifier B3 Soundbar would look great on your wall or sitting upon your TV cabinet. We love the connection options (especially Bluetooth), the metal finish to the ends, and the rich sound this thing chucks out. This is another product that proves that Edifier really don't get the recognition they deserve.

Around £127.99

Available from www.amazon.co.uk

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