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  1. #1

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    Arrow Polk Audio SurroundBar (42", 50", 360 DVD Theater, SDA IHT) - Review/ Help Thread

    SurroundBar - SurroundBar 50 - SurroundBar 360 - SurroundBar SDA Instant Home Theater

    I created this thread to get opinions and comments regarding the Polk Audio SurroundBar and the new additions to the SDA Surround family, the SurroundBar 50, SurroundBar 360 and SurroundBar SDA Instant Home Theater.

    If you have previously heard this product, please post your comments. If you have recently heard or purchased this product, I encourage you to let the Club Polk forum...and Polk Audio know what you think of the SurroundBar Series.

    This is an open discussion, but please make every attempt to stay on topic. I would hope that whether it's positive or negative, you will post your genuine opinion as all the information is important.

    The following information is a collection of quick links to information regarding SDA, SDA Surround and the SurroundBar series of components.

    Thanks for participating :)

    SurroundBAR Series Homepage

    SurroundBAR FAQ

    SDA Surround Sound Technology Explained -- Matt Polk's White Paper

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    Last edited by dorokusai; 04-09-2008 at 10:40 PM.

  2. #2

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    for the target market intended, this is a great product in my opinion. As I said at polkfest, would I replace my speakers with this thing...no. But If I had a room to put a home teater in with either limited room, or no desire to put towers and bookshelves on stands to take up a ton of room, this product would foot the bill. I was very surprised at the performance of this unit with the little polk 404 sub I heard it with. It was a very solid demo. It was surround sound, while the surround effects kind of stopped laterally, say 100 degrees in each direction, as opposed to all the way around.

    need to save space? want great sound, at a good price, in a small convenient package? get a good reciever, a decent sub, and this thing and you'll be fine. all that for way less than a bose lifestyle, taking up less room, and still trounces the bejesus out of any of the lifestyle systems I've heard (up to the 4000 dollar lifestyle 25)
    Theater - Polk LSi15, LSiC, LSi9 speaks, DIY Sub (142.5L box, SVS plus driver, 500 Watt plate amp)...Outlaw 990 pre/pro, Carver TFM45, 2 X Outlaw M200 . Rotel RB980 . PS3, Monster 3600 power center

    2 Channel -
    Anthem Pre 2l, Jolida JD100 CD player, CAL Sigma DAC, Carver m4.0, Polk LSi9 w external modified Crossovers (thanks Trey!)

  3. #3

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    I was very impressed with the Surround Bar. I would be quite happy with one for my HT. I have heard others say it does not take the place of a full HT speaker system but I have to ask at what cost? In my opinion it is as good as any HT system at the $1K price point and certainly better than any HT in a box that I have heard. For plasma or LCD owners who want a clean easy installation it is a must have.
    madmax
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    Avantgarde horns, 300b tubes, thats the kinda crap I want... :D

  4. #4

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    Mark,

    You might want to add the SDA whitepaper to this thread as well: http://www.polkaudio.com/partners/papers.php?id=8


    Also, as part of the discussion, I would like to find out what types of applications the SB would be good for.

    Therefore, I'm also attaching a rough layout of my room. It is a very open floorplan with 11 ft cathedral ceiling over the living room part and 9 ft flat ceiling over the kitchen/dining part.

    In the corner, there is a large gas fireplace. I have my television on top of it, along with my components: receiver and LSi7's. The ledge is approx 7 ft wide, however it is at least 4 ft off the ground.

    I'm thinking about putting a Surroundbar below the mantle, so I could use my home as a demonstration room for my new business. I would probably keep the 7's in place for comparison, but I think many of my clients could benfit from something like the surroundbar.

    If you have any suggestions, let me know.


    Zach
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    Last edited by okiepolkie; 12-12-2005 at 01:45 PM.
    Tschüss
    Zach

  5. #5

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    It sounds like something made for people who dont like speakers in their house.
    Outlaw M200s
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  6. #6

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    Some might say Bose has had moderate success with that.

  7. #7

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    Default Polk Audio Surround Bar

    I plan to purchase an HDTV soon and will buy a home theatre set-up also. While I already have rear (surround) speakers in place (in the wall), I don't have alot of space for front & center speakers. The Surround Bar placed on top of my TV may be a good solution for me. It is my understanding that I can combine both my existing surround speakers with the surround speakers in the Polk Surround Bar - connecting both to my AV Receiver. I don't have alot of experience doin this kinda stuff, and was wondering if anyone on this thread might care to comment on my plan. Thanks.

  8. #8

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    if i had to wager a guess, you could do 7.1 that way. hook the center, fronts and side surrounds to the bar, and the rear cahnnels to your inwalls. I bet that would sound pretty friggin cool!
    Theater - Polk LSi15, LSiC, LSi9 speaks, DIY Sub (142.5L box, SVS plus driver, 500 Watt plate amp)...Outlaw 990 pre/pro, Carver TFM45, 2 X Outlaw M200 . Rotel RB980 . PS3, Monster 3600 power center

    2 Channel -
    Anthem Pre 2l, Jolida JD100 CD player, CAL Sigma DAC, Carver m4.0, Polk LSi9 w external modified Crossovers (thanks Trey!)

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by bankshot
    It sounds like something made for people who dont like speakers in their house.


    this is the first product I heard for this type of market (no lots of speakers in the house) that I would actually consider using if I did not have the room for my towers and such. as I said, I wouldnt replace what I have, but if I had to save the room, I could quite easily live with the bar and a good sub.

    cant say the same for the polk cubes, I would rather just listen to the TV speakers, I'm dead serious on that

    the friggin cubes are near unlistenable to me
    Theater - Polk LSi15, LSiC, LSi9 speaks, DIY Sub (142.5L box, SVS plus driver, 500 Watt plate amp)...Outlaw 990 pre/pro, Carver TFM45, 2 X Outlaw M200 . Rotel RB980 . PS3, Monster 3600 power center

    2 Channel -
    Anthem Pre 2l, Jolida JD100 CD player, CAL Sigma DAC, Carver m4.0, Polk LSi9 w external modified Crossovers (thanks Trey!)

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by ohskigod
    if i had to wager a guess, you could do 7.1 that way. hook the center, fronts and side surrounds to the bar, and the rear cahnnels to your inwalls. I bet that would sound pretty friggin cool!
    with a 5.1 system wire the front, and rears of the sound bar to the front channels, and would most likely sound pretty flippin' cool



    Quote Originally Posted by ohskigod
    this is the first product I heard for this type of market (no lots of speakers in the house)

    Boston acoustics had some thing simialar It had a single suround and a speaker that had left center and rightfor postioning on or under your tv , an a tiny sub
    Speakers:SDA2a, sub:Atlantic Technologies 172 PBM
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    SourcesOppo DV-970HD, Xbox360, Kenwood KT-5300
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  11. #11

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    Okie - That looks like the best place to install it. You may want to treat the first reflections from the adjacent sidewalls.

  12. #12

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    One thing I always wondered about these kind of speakers is if you dont have a wall directly in back of you then how do you get the simulated surround effect.
    Outlaw M200s
    Outlaw ICBM
    Yamaha reciver
    Panasonic: AE900U
    POLK LSi 15s
    POLK LSi 9s
    POLK LSi C

  13. #13

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    it doesnt use bouncing sound off the walls to get the job done, it uses SDA technology to get the job done. loooong story I'm not qualified to fully explain. I'm sure someone will :)
    Theater - Polk LSi15, LSiC, LSi9 speaks, DIY Sub (142.5L box, SVS plus driver, 500 Watt plate amp)...Outlaw 990 pre/pro, Carver TFM45, 2 X Outlaw M200 . Rotel RB980 . PS3, Monster 3600 power center

    2 Channel -
    Anthem Pre 2l, Jolida JD100 CD player, CAL Sigma DAC, Carver m4.0, Polk LSi9 w external modified Crossovers (thanks Trey!)

  14. #14

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    Bankshot - SDA is fully explained in the original post. Check out the links.

  15. #15

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    Default Polk Surround Bar

    Thanks very much for the input re the 'sound bar'. I had a chance to compare the Polk Sound Bar with a similiar product made by Yamaha (YSP-1).

    While the Yamaha sounded alot better, I didn't feel it was a fair comparsion. The Yamaha was connected to a sub-woofer, and perfectly centered in a sound room. The polk was positioned beneath a TV, with no sub connected.

    This was in a store where sales personnel work on commission. I couldn't help but think that I was being steered to the more expensive $1,300 Yamaha versus the less expensive $900.00 Polk. Thanks Again & MERRY CHRISTMAS!!.

  16. #16

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    I got a chance to hear this at Polkfest and thought it sounded amazing. Not only was it super clear and detailed but had no harshness at all and for 3" drivers soudned full and rich.

    Not only that but this little thing is capable of quite a bit of output. I was quite suprised when the volume was cranked how well this thing handled it with ease and no distortion.

    Its also appealing for ease of installation. Simply plug the wires into the back and youre set. No need for running and hiding wires all over the living room floor and around doorways now.

    Sure it doesnt give you the full effect of having rear speakers but its not supposed to. Not everybody wants to deal with rear speakers so this thing is perfect for them.

    Match this thing with a good sub and youve got a very high quality home theater.
    polkaudio sound quality competitor since 2005
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  17. #17
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    I think the Surroundbar is a great innovation and wish Polk the best.

    In looking at pictures, a couple of questions popped into mind.

    I know the SB uses much smaller drivers, but it seems astonishing that there's no more (apparent) volume to the enclosure! Having said that, do you all think the same basic enclosure and drive array might be "split" in a later model -- allowing the L&R channels to function as stand-mounted units and more flexibility in placement of the channels and center?

    I look at my old (but excellent pic quality) Toshiba 32" CRT in the upstairs family room (with limited horizontal real estate on its top) and think "that would be cool if I could set the center on top and have the channels as sides, placed where I want them!"
    Be-Bop-A-Lula, Baby What I Say

  18. #18
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    Interesting thought, Mike. That would essentially create a Surround Bar center channel, and could be used with existing main speakers as well as Surround Bar mains.
    More later,
    Tour...
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  19. #19

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    Default Polk Audio Surround Bar

    I intend to purchase the SurroundBar from Circuit City to take advantage of their Subwoofer rebate offer. While the overwhelming majority of reviews favor the Polk PSW10, one reviewer mentioned the lack of an 'LSF connection'. I have no idea what that refers to. I intend to connect the sub to my Kenwood receiver, which is equipped with a 'sub-woofer pre-out' connection. Can I assume that is how the PSW10 should be connected to my receiver? -- using the 'pre-out? Thanks for the help.

  20. #20

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    Quote Originally Posted by willbrook
    I intend to purchase the SurroundBar from Circuit City to take advantage of their Subwoofer rebate offer. While the overwhelming majority of reviews favor the Polk PSW10, one reviewer mentioned the lack of an 'LSF connection'. I have no idea what that refers to. I intend to connect the sub to my Kenwood receiver, which is equipped with a 'sub-woofer pre-out' connection. Can I assume that is how the PSW10 should be connected to my receiver? -- using the 'pre-out? Thanks for the help.
    Yes, you are correct. The reviewer must have made a typo and meant LFE.

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    A co-worker is actually looking to purchase a new HT system and was describing the system she is thinking of purchasing, the 3-2-1 GS Series II from Bose. I told her to look at the Polk SurroundBar. You can purchase this in Canada for $829.99 compared to amost $2K for the Bose system. Too bad she cannot demo either product here is Yellowknife. Anything extra that you folks would like to add that will help in her decision would be greatly appreciated. I am atempting to convert someone to Polk. She has listened to my system and liked what she heard. Thanks.
    Michael ;)
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  22. #22

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    'Political Correctness'.........defined

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  23. #23

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    Default Polk Audio Surround Bar

    I purchased the Surround Bar (with free Polk PSW10) from Crutchfield in December. Free shipping & no taxes. Arrived three days later in perfect condition. I've installed the Surround Bar above my new 55" Sony TV, and connected both the Surround Bar's 'surround' inputs & my existing surround speakers (in rear wall) to my AV's 'surround' inputs. Sounds great. Very neat & inconspicuous. I appreciate guidance received on this forum. Thanks. :) :)

  24. #24

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    congrats! Glad you are enjoying your new system!
    Sunfire TGP III PrePro, Sunfire Cinema Grand Signature 405wpc 5 ch. Amp, Rotel RCD-1072 CDP, Onkyo TA2600 Tape Deck, Pioneer Elite 47-A DVD, Sony 32" XBR TV, Polk RTA-8T Main Speakers, Boston VR-920 Center Channel, Boston PV-600 Subwoofer, Polk DSW 400 Subwoofer, Polk FXi-3 Surround Speakers

  25. #25
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    Cool, wb... Please copy and paste your thoughts into a customer review over in the Products area of the site...
    More later,
    Tour...
    Vox Copuli
    Better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to open your mouth and remove all doubt. - Old English Proverb

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    "There is a certain entertainment value in ripping the occaisonal (sic) buttmunch..." - TroyD
    "Death doesn't come with a Uhaul." - Dennis Gardner

    Rebuilding Maggie 2-ch & Amazing 2-ch... Building 2-ch "wall"... Figuring out the HT

  26. #26
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    i've got to listen to this thing. Hearing is believing.

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    Note Home Theater Magazine review and measurements .

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    I do not see a stong market for this. You still need to buy a reciever, sub and dvd/cd player. The total price is going to be high. I would think that the kind of person who buys the Bose 3-2-1 type of system would be attracted to the "all-in-one" packaging AND the smaller overall setup (sound quality in third). Through in one remote...the Bose marketing machine...

  29. #29

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    There's a huge market for this and the CES event at which SB was one of the showpiece demonstrations, was packed 24/7.

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    and Bose's price isnt high ?

    It helps that the surround bar style wise fits much better with a plasma tv, wall mounted then a 321 system. I wouldnt say sound quality isnt a factor, just with Bose, it has to sound ALOT better to overcome the marketing machine. The 321 isnt anywhere close to the same league sound wise as the sound bar.

    listen for yourself, hopefully others will.

    will bose still make money? sure? Polk doesnt need all there market share, just some of it to make it worth while. Polk has to market it right, but it terms of product itself? I can easily tell it is a winner.
    Theater - Polk LSi15, LSiC, LSi9 speaks, DIY Sub (142.5L box, SVS plus driver, 500 Watt plate amp)...Outlaw 990 pre/pro, Carver TFM45, 2 X Outlaw M200 . Rotel RB980 . PS3, Monster 3600 power center

    2 Channel -
    Anthem Pre 2l, Jolida JD100 CD player, CAL Sigma DAC, Carver m4.0, Polk LSi9 w external modified Crossovers (thanks Trey!)

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