Vizio 5.1.4 Dolby Atmos Soundbar Review: Epic Atmos on the Cheap

Soundbars with true Dolby Atmos surround sound have historically been a rich man’s game, often costing well over $1,000. Vizio’s new 5.1.4 Dolby Atmos soundbar undercuts similar competitors by hundreds of dollars, so we spent some quality time with the system to find out if it can hold its own with the top-rated competitors.

One could say Vizio’s motto has long been “Anything you can do, we can do cheaper.” It’s worked out pretty well for the brand’s TVs — including the feature packed (and gorgeous) Vizio P-series — and it’s also a pretty good way to win the soundbar war. The company’s latest effort on that front is a 5.1.4 Atmos soundbar, which goes by the title “Vizio Home Theater Sound System with Dolby Atmos,” or the exceedingly long model number, SB46514-F6.

Bad names aside, the SB46514 offers a powerhouse of features, including discrete surround sound and four upfiring drivers to closely model Samsung’s popular HW-K950 and HW-N950 bars, both of which helped set the standard for potent Atmos sound in an all-in-one solution. The twist? At $1,000, Vizio’s version undercuts those rivals by as much as $700. We spent some quality time with the bar to find out if Vizio’s new Atmos value proposition delivers.

We’re used to some heavy lifting when it comes to Atmos bars, but the SB46514 wins the prize for most awkward gear-drag. This thing is heavy, so lift with caution. Opening the L-shaped box is also an awkward affair, flush with foam packaging, a sizable accessories box, and plenty of flaps and inserts to unpack.

It didn’t take long to discover what was weighing down the package, as we nearly slipped a disk pulling out the massive subwoofer block, outfitted in Vizio’s signature black-and-silver color scheme, including a layer of black grill along the top and front matched by slick aluminum slabs at the sides for some impressive style. A sizeable bass port sits at the backside next to inputs for the included satellite speakers (more on that below), and a power port.

The pint-sized satellites and soundbar are similarly adorned, the latter of which spans a healthy 46-inches across and bears a rubberized control pad on top. Riding in the package are a litany of cables and other accessories, including power cables for the bar and sub, connector cables for the dual surround speakers, multiple digital and analog connection cables (including HDMI), and the same recycled remote packed with virtually every Vizio bar, complete with basic navigation keys and a Casio-style digital menu screen.

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Comments

Shaun Davids says:

$1000 ,only a complete moron would pay that for plastic ..two inch drivers. ..omg I’m creasing up

anamayshun says:

What’s cheap about this?

Sting's Doppelgänger says:

Why wouldn’t you spend a little more and get a receiver with a left and right channel?

CC CC says:

Vizio sucks Sony better

Sir Jon Smith III says:

Was thinking about getting the vizio atmos soundbar, but could not resist the price of the LG SK9Y during black friday ($292).

Timen de Bruijne says:

Is this better than €500 surround sound set?

ColonielLizardT4 says:

Nice for the price, otherwise the Samsung HW-N950 blows this bar out of the water.

Videogame Vegas says:

I wish I could trust this review, It sounds like Vizio may have a winner, but unfortunately Digital Trends screwed me with their false Samsung HW-K950. Can’t trust it. Hopefully I’ll be able to get a demo at a store.

vgv

Pete guyette says:

Found both in the wild, 800,350, looking at the 350 one for the bedroom

Mordakie says:

bose may not be atmos but still has the best sound in a soundbar to this day!

Daniel Chang says:

Does it make a difference that the SoundBar is using Dolby Processing for the Height channels?

Is the only way to get full Dolby Atrmos processing to connect to the source to HDMI in? will it make a difference?

I want to connect my Blu-ray player with Dolby Atmos support and the Apple TV 4K , so I don’t know how to do it and get the full experience

TheHugginMonkey625 says:

I have the SB365.1.2. It’s not a bad sound bar at all. My first and very impressed with it. It would be nice to upgrade the rear speakers with upward firing speakers. Even though I bought this for $299 I still think it should be around $250.

Nun Ya says:

$1,000 for a sound bar? Are you fucking insane?

MASKOAA says:

I’m afraid if I get this my cats will think it’s a scratch post

luis esparza says:

My current Vizio soundbar is amazing. I hope to soon upgrade and enjoy this soundbar.

John Malone says:

Why didn’t you play a Movie by the sound bar. A action one and some rock band so we can appreciate the depth of the sound bar not that stupid music in the background Come on Man U guys can do Better After all it’s Digital Trends you’re supposed to set the Trend

Paul Grice says:

Hey vizio what a dumbass design on speaker cords ends if i wanted drop these down thur the floor up front come up thur floor in back. Looks like i would have to drill a hole about the size of a fist.

Arsenal Best says:

Bose soundtouch 300 no dolby atmos from 2017 but still the best soundbar in terms of clarity & quality

Raymond Leggs says:

$1,000.00? No! No! No! Oh God No! Oh god No! Oh God NO!

Ajit Zhu says:

what this the rear speaker stand model showing in 3:44 at the back? and will it fit the vizio ones? Thanks

Arnold Nathan says:

I hate that I have the vizio with the flat subwoofer and it never stays connected to Bluetooth

Sloe Bone says:

Atmos with all the speakers shrunk and stuck right next to each other. I don’t think that really qualifies as Atmos

Bill Peirce says:

I can see 400.00 but definitely not 1k.
U can get a thx certified Receiver and 7.1 speaker set up for 1,100.00 from onkyo that will blow this away!!!!!
Vizio needs to drop that price big time!!!!!

GodOLight says:

The design looks so clean

min nguyen says:

Woah I see you have the pioneer elite line in the back, you have a video on those?

Michel Linschoten says:

Pretty cool! I would never use a soundbar for home theater purposes and such, but technology has not been sitting on its ass. And for that kudos, i just hope that Vizio lowers their prices a bit. Now they risk getting the same hatred Bose gets in the audio community.

ericimi says:

Sound bar is a compromise don’t get it unless your lazy or it’s for a bedroom.

Wes-Fish Care says:

DTS:X is not hard to find with physical media

paul woodward says:

Yah sure 1k I’d rather spend my money on Bose

Jimmy Cheng says:

I’d love to know the issues you’ve had while using the soundbar, as I’ve read many people complain about the hdmi-arc connection.

mikej747 says:

“If you like what you see”! So you’re trying to sale us a soundbar/SPEAKER on how it LOOKS, NOT how it SOUNDS!!! What a stupid sales pitch!

Yarlin la voz sensual says:

i dont trust vizio

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