A little boom for your TV experience. A soundbar turns those tinny speakers into something a lot more immersive, but without the footprint of a full stereo system. This Tribit Soundbar is an entry-level (cost-friendly) option to accomplish just that and we have been testing it out over the last week so that we could tell you what we think.
Design-wise, I could say that a soundbar is a soundbar, but that isn’t always true. Especially, now that we have Atmos models in the market as well as some uniquely shaped creations. Then there is overall size, weight, and everything else to consider. For example, are you going to set this in front of your TV on a flat space, or do you plan on hanging it on the wall?
It’s important to take these things into consideration because this may or may not work out depending on where you will be putting it. If you plan to hang it, you will absolutely want to make sure that you have studs to screw into as this is a bulky model. It isn’t much heavier than the average speaker bar of its size, but it will stick out some which will add to the effect of gravity pulling on its anchor points. General anchors into drywall may or may not be effective (especially if anyone accidentally puts any weight on it).
Overall size includes 37.2″ in length, 3″ in height, and around 5″ front to back. As for its weight, it does fall around 8.5 lbs. This can sound like a lot, but speakers are heavy and there are many others out there just as heavy or worse.
That being said, due to it being a slightly bulky speaker, it does give you the impression that it has slightly larger cones inside for those lower frequencies.
It does have two small (but decently sized) woofers on top with a release in the front, plus four drivers in the front for everything else. So there are some options packed inside for sure.
The entire body of the soundbar is black, with an LCD display on the front and manual controls on the right side.
These controls on the side include the basics. Such as volume, source, EQ, Bluetooth pairing, and power. All of which are also provided on the included remote. So you likely won’t be using these much unless you are notorious for misplacing remotes.
That backside of the soundbar contains your inputs as usual. You have HDMI for Arc support coming from a TV that offers the same, as well as SPDIF (optical), digital coaxial, analog 3.5mm in (stereo), as well as USB.
There is a physical power switch on the back, so don’t forget to turn that on before you start mashing the power button on the remote wondering why it isn’t working. This is normal for many or even most soundbars, but I had to mention this because one of my colleagues (I won’t mention names) walked into the room to play with it at random and had a brief moment of cerebral air-gap troubles until he remembered that there was (“probably”) a switch on the back.
All of these inputs, including power are all tucked inward so that the speaker can still rest flat against the wall if you do plan on hanging it.
As for the mentioned remote, it is a simple option with all of the normal features. Starting from the top, you have the power button (red), followed by mute and source (ie, HDMI, Optical, Coaxial, Bluetooth, USB). Then a directional pad which is just for what is labeled (there is no on-screen interface after all), including volume and track control (USB).
Below that is your EQ, outlined with a white borderline. You have four options, including Movie, Game, Music, and News. The last one you likely won’t ever use as it’s a bit compressed and tinny sounding. Movie and Game are a bit similar offering what “appears” to be a wider soundstage experience, and Music is simply a nice crisp/loud stereo effect. We found ourselves mostly switching between Movie and Music trying to figure out what we liked better for any given media source.
Then you have a Bluetooth button to trigger pairing. Which it does just as well as any Bluetooth speaker. Start the pairing, pick it up on your phone, and mate them up resulting in the ability to play audio wirelessly from any mobile device.
Many entry-level soundbar options offer a limited range. Some of which don’t sound much better than the TV’s built-in speakers. They are simply louder and that’s it. This model isn’t affected by this but we still have to lump it into the category of entry-level (or at least semi-entry-level) since it has its own quirks worth mentioning.
For one, this speaker can get pretty loud thanks to its size. You can get a lot of volume out of whatever you are watching. The only issue there is that it does begin to distort at some point. So we can’t say “distortion free” when bragging about volume levels.
Once you start cranking it to around 80% and higher, you begin to notice distortion on various levels. Mostly in the lower frequencies at first, and then eventually everywhere else. Many soundbars are simple devices and run into this. We just felt that it was a little more noticeable on this one. This is what keeps it in or close to the entry level.
As for the lower frequencies, they are absolutely there and this makes a big difference to your watching experience. It is definitely not a boring soundbar for an entry-level model. There is a lot of range in there, although it isn’t perfect either.
Most soundbars are limited in range due to the fact that they aren’t full-range in most scenarios. This is due to the lack of space to get all the required drivers in. So usually you have some mids to highs and everything else is dependent upon a separate sub (if your soundbar even comes with one). This one doesn’t come with a sub, but as I mentioned, it does have some sub drivers inside. So you get a little mid-lows in the mix that can sometimes hit pretty low. You just can’t hit it too hard before distorting (as mentioned).
Finally, the LCD display on the front is very helpful in terms of knowing which source you are in. It is also nice that it does dim after a few seconds. Some models don’t do this and the light of the screen can be very distracting. This one only remains bright long enough for you to easily read it and then dims to an acceptable level where it just becomes an ambient light source in the room without taking your focus from the TV.
What’s inside the box
It does come with mounting brackets to install the soundbar to the wall. As well as an analog cable (3.5mm), an optical cable, and an HDMI. So you do have your pick of just about everything without having to buy anything else to make it work. Unless you make use of coaxial, but almost no one does.
Besides the speaker, remote, and power cable, there is nothing else. The instructions are there but most users won’t pay attention to them. Unless of course, you are new to soundbars and are not comfortable with new tech–then you might “skim” the instructions. Everything is mostly self-explanatory though thanks to the LCD display on the front.
It’s a big one with a decent number of drivers giving you a lot of volume and a little bit of boom to go with it all. It does begin to distort a little eventually at higher levels, so this is something to watch for and try to find your sweet spot in top volume (also depending on which EQ you are set to).
All in all, we do like the range and volume it has to put out for an entry-level (or semi-entry-level) model, such as this. It’s nice to get those lows in there without the need of having to add a sub in the mix somewhere. The price is also right for what you are getting.
The point of distortion is the only thing we have to shake our heads at a little. When it comes to similar brands (the not so widely known brands), we like the Soundcore Infini Soundbar better. It remains distortion-free at higher volumes than this one and sounds good. Sadly, it isn’t for sale anymore it seems.
It is nice that Tribit took into consideration LCD dimming to prevent distractions. Again, not every company thinks of this and that can be a problem. So it’s nice to see this factored into its design.
Co-Authors: Ryan S.
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