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Need a Dolby Atmos Soundbar for Your Home Theater? Just Get This

In the market for a soundbar, but don't know which one to buy? Skip the research — buy the Sonos Arc. You won't regret it.

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Tucker Bowe

If you want a great soundbar for your home theater, then you want one that supports Dolby Atmos. The immersive sound technology tricks your ears into thinking that sound is coming from all around you — left, right and above — so that you really feel like you're in a movie, not just watching it.

The good news is that, in 2022, there are a lot of different soundbars that support Dolby Atmos — but not all of them are created equal. If you're not trying to go down the rabbit hole of comparing each of the different Dolby Atmos soundbars, we suggest going with the Sonos Arc ($899). It's the best all-around Dolby Atmos soundbar you can buy. Here's why.

The Sonos Arc delivers the the full Atmos experience

The Arc isn't a small or cheap soundbar. It's a full 5.0 system packing a total of 11 drivers, including eight midwoofers and three tweeters. The key to the Arc, however, (and for most flagship-quality Dolby Atmos soundbars, if we're being honest) is that it has two upward-firing drivers that allow it to create true virtual height channels and really take full advantage of Dolby Atmos. It's one of the most immersive-sounding soundbars you can buy.

As a point of comparison, there are many more affordable soundbars that support Dolby Atmos — like the Sonos Beam (Gen 2) — but they lack upward-firing drivers and thus, aren't able to trick your ears as well or create as immersive of an experience.

jgt sonos soundbar
Tucker Bowe

The Sonos Arc can be turned into a full surround-sound system

The Arc sounds great on its own, but for an even more immersive experience you can turn the Arc into the hub of a full Sonos surround sound system. For example, you can add two Sonos One (or One SL or Play:1) speakers and designate them as satellite speakers. And you can add Sonos's wireless subwoofer, the Sub (Gen 3), for extra bass. Together, this combination creates a 5.1.2 surround sound system.

The great thing is that you don't have to buy all these speakers together. The Arc is upgradable, meaning you can buy it by itself and, if you decide you want an even more immersive experience, you can buy the surrounds and/or subwoofer after the fact. And setting them all up together is super easy thanks to Sonos's intuitive app.

jgt sonos soundbar
Tucker Bowe

The Arc is a dream of a multi-room speaker

The other neat thing is that the Arc comes with all the advantages of most other Sonos speakers. It supports AirPlay 2 for easy streaming from your iPhone or iPad. It can be integrated with a voice assistant, either as Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant, and thus respond to voice commands; you can even tell it to turn the Arc's volume up or down, or, with some supported TVs, turn them on or off.

You can also group the Arc with any other Sonos speaker in your home via the Sonos app. This is cool because it allows you to play your TV's audio throughout your home so, for instance, you can listen to your TV's audio while you're making dinner via a Sonos speaker in your kitchen.

jgt sonos soundbar
Tucker Bowe

The Sonos Arc hits the right price.

The Sonos Arc isn't a cheap soundbar by any means. It costs $899 — which is actually $100 more than it used to cost as Sonos raised most of its speaker prices in 2021 — but that puts it inline with many other flagship Dolby Atmos soundbars, such as the Bose Smart Soundbar 900 ($899) and the Bowers & Wilkins Panorama 3 ($999), both of which have upward-firing drivers to deliver that full immersive experience. But the Arc separates itself from the pack because of its wonderfully easy-to-use app, its ability to play well with all of Sonos's other extremely popular speakers, and its bespoke yet cool design.

Gear Patrol

Sonos Arc

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