Samsung has announced a bevy of new high-spec Q-Series soundbars for 2021, including the 11.1.4-channel HW-Q950A, which comes with Dolby Atmos support and some seriously innovative rear speakers.
Unlike most soundbar setups, the included wireless rear speakers each come with a side-firing channel, blasting your music or TV audio at you from every angle in conjunction with the bar's upfiring tweeters.
The Samsung HW-Q950A also comes with a wireless subwoofer that features a built-in microphone. This mic allows the subwoofer to scan the room and calibrate the sound accordingly, so it should sound great wherever you place it.
With many soundbars, including the Sonos Arc, you have to walk around your room waving your smartphone around in the air to properly calibrate it to its surroundings, so this feature will be a welcome improvement for those that want a simple setup.
According to Samsung, the new soundbar also comes with a gaming mode to introduce "more dynamics to your game experience", as well as a Active Voice Amplifier feature to boost the dialogue in films and TV shows when it detects noise disturbances.
A slew of Samsung soundbars are coming soon
There's no word yet on how much the Samsung HW-Q950A will cost, but if its predecessor is anything to go by, it'll be pricey. The 9.1.4-channel HW-Q950T cost $1,399 / £1,499 / AU$1949 when it launched last year, and you can expect the latest model to be at least as expensive.
If you're on a strict budget, other new models in the Q-Series range will likely be a little cheaper – though these soundbars don't skimp on the specs.
According to Tech Hive, Samsung announced a new 2.0.2 add-on wireless surround kit for some of these Q-series soundbars, which means you'll be able to create a true surround sound system if your bar doesn't already come with wireless speakers.
One of the compatible Q-Series soundbars, the HW-Q800A, comes with Dolby Atmos and DTS:X support, though its 3.1.2-channel build suggests it will be a lot cheaper than the Q950A.
Samsung has also announced that its Q Symphony feature – which means Q-Series soundbars can work with the speakers in a Q-Series TV – will come to more Samsung TV's this year, including the Q70A, A80A, A60A, and AU8000 lines.
When those will arrive is anyone's guess, but a Q2 launch (March through May) seems the most likely, if past years are anything to go by.
- Can't hold out til then? Don't miss our guide to the best soundbars of 2021