8.0
Score

Pros

  • Easy and Seamless Setup Experience
  • 5.1 Channel Surround Sound
  • Amazing Audio Quality
  • Wireless Subwoofer works Wonders

Cons

  • Doesn't Support .m4a via USB
  • Could be Pricey for some

When it comes to Home Audio, we have various types of speaker that pretty much helps us to enhance and offer better listening experience to the content we consume. Knowing the fact that almost most of the time, the TV Speakers go through huge compromises – it either lacks loudness, clarity and many more. One thing that made an impact in the Audio division was the rise of Soundbars. Samsung unveiled their new lineup of Soundbar for this year and the kind folks at Samsung Malaysia has sent us one of their newest addition. Meet the Samsung Soundbar N650 – A 5.1 Channel Panoramic Soundbar with some serious trick up its sleeves. We have been using it for almost a month now and its time for us to share our final verdict in this Samsung Soundbar N650 review.

What’s Included in the Box

Inside the box, the Samsung Soundbar N650 comes with a Soundbar and one unit of Subwoofer. The moment you open up the box – these are the accessories you’ll find along with the soundbar.

  • Adapters for the Soundbar and Subwoofer
  • Remote Controller
  • HDMI Cable
  • Micro USB to USB-A Cable
  • Wall Mount Bracket
  • Battery

Design and Build Quality

The Samsung Soundbar N650 has a rather simple design over all – and this applies to both the Soundbar and the subwoofer. On the soundbar, you’ll see this mesh like design all over from the top to the front. At the sides, it has an angle that it bends into to give this illusion look to it which is nice. There’s only color and it comes in this black subtle matte paint finish on the speaker that doesn’t look shiny and has a beautiful understated look to it. The subwoofer on the other hand, it’s huge and has the same mesh design on the front of the speaker and has a black finish to it as well, where on the top has a rough texture and a smooth side panels.

1/11

As for the build quality, the soundbar feels solid and when we removed it out of the box, it was actually heavier than we thought. This is because the soundbar is completely constructed in metal and that gives the heft to it. If you are wondering, the speaker let a lot weighs about 3.6kg. The subwoofer is actually the heaviest at 7.0kg. That totals about a whopping 13.8kg when it’s in one package. The subwoofer is constructed in a different material but it doesn’t feel cheap in anyway – which is definitely a good thing.

1/2

The remote has a very ergonomic design that fits into your hand nice and snug. The remote isn’t too overwhelming – in fact it has a total of 10 buttons to control the soundbar. That’s quite little but it’s very functional. The plastic matte finish once again takes the cake for what it is.

Overall, I like the build quality and how understated it looks. It doesn’t look flashy and the muted look pretty much blends into any environment – like mine for instance where I pretty much placed it on my Desktop.

Specification

The N650 requires a total power of 360W to power the whole speaker and Subwoofer. It uses Dolby 5.1 Channel Surround sound system. It has a frequency range of 42Hz ~ 20KHz. The Speaker has a sealed enclosure that cannot be removed and under that, it consists of 8 speakers in total. The subwoofer has a driver size of 6.5” – which gives you the answer why it’s heavy. It has a bass reflex subwoofer enclosure.

What makes this N650 special is the fact that there isn’t a single cable connecting both the soundbar and Subwoofer together because it’s wireless. Trust me, the moment we knew about it, we were genuinely surprised to see the unit was wireless. This means you can place the subwoofer anywhere you like – be it near your couch, beside the table. Well, pretty much anywhere you like.

Features

Let’s jump into the features the Samsung Soundbar N650 has to offer. This is a panoramic soundbar, which means that the sound staging is placed in a way that it sounds way impressive than you think. With the help of the 8 speakers that’s built in – it will amplify the sound and reflects on the wall and gives it a dynamic listening experience. On top of that, Samsung has built in a feature called Samsung Acoustic Beam. What this does, is that it combines the sound together to make sure that what you watch and listen is pretty much in sync.

One other thing this soundbar offers, it’s the 4K Pass-through. If you happen to have a PS4 Pro, or a UHD Blue-ray Player, you can pass it through the soundbar and connect it to your TV – which makes it seamless. What’s also fun is that it has a Game Mode to offer insane sound quality throughout your gameplay. If you happen to use a wireless TV, well, you are in for a treat because you can connect your speakers with no wires and keep the whole setup clean as ever. You can even control the speakers with the help of an app on your Android phone, which is pretty cool too.

Our Experience

The Samsung Soundbar N650 has a package that pretty much resembles like a “Tetris” and there’s a reason why – because it has both the subwoofer on the top and the soundbar at the bottom. Our package was already opened up previously and so, our unboxing experience varies. With the same compartment as the Subwoofer is where you’ll find all the cables and the remote that you’d require for the speaker and the subwoofer. Following that the bottom compartment only carries the Soundbar.

Setting Up

Setting up the Samsung Soundbar N650 is without a doubt the easiest to do. All you have to do is connect the Power cable into the Soundbar and the Subwoofer and voila, it’s powered up. It’s pretty much seamless and very easy to use. In our setup, we placed the soundbar right in front of my monitor and the subwoofer is located at the side below the table like a PC.

We passed through our laptop – the Asus ROG Scar to the Soundbar and daisy chained the soundbar to the Monitor. Somehow we weren’t able to pass through the audio and no matter what we try, it still failed to pass through but the visuals appeared pretty well. So, we ended up not passing through. Now trying an external Gaming console on the other hand did work fine.

Other than that, the Soundbar has various amounts of ports. You find a MicroUSB port, AUX in, Digital Audio in on one side and Two HDMI (One for in and the other one for Out) and a DC Adapter port. On the right side of the soundbar, you’ll find the buttons – Volume, Source and Power. The speaker has 5 different modes – D.IN | AUX | HDMI | BT | USB respectively.

The Remote

The remote – like I have mentioned earlier is what you use to control the speaker and the controls are rather simple. On the remote, you’ll find the Power Button, Source and a dedicated Bluetooth Pair button that allows you to pair your device. Then we have the Arrow button in a circular position and the Play/Pause button. Below that, you’ll find the Mute, Sound Mode and Settings to change the Treble and Bass.

The volume and the Woofer control is actually very creative. The whole thing behaves like a joystick, where you move up and down to increase or decrease the Volume/Bass and press the button, it mutes the audio. Very intuitive design.

Sound Quality

Via AUX

During our usage time, we tested three particular type – via AUX, Bluetooth and USB. This is to tell what the speaker support and doesn’t. In Standard mode, you can tell that the front speakers are actually being used and the subwoofer itself. Testing it via AUX did give it a nice listening experience and both the vocals and instruments sounds pretty stunning. Switching to Surround gives a wider soundstage and with the sound bouncing off the wall – it has a very dynamic staging. Now in gaming mode, it amplifies the sound more and gives less priority to vocals – as it gets masked. I’d suggest you to get a good quality AUX Cable that has the potential to stream improved audio quality from your Audio Source to the speaker.

Via Bluetooth

We later proceeded testing the speaker via Bluetooth and in this case, I actually used my personal daily driver – The Samsung Galaxy Note8. When you stream music via Bluetooth, there’s always a hit in quality but somehow the Soundbar managed to handle the song really well. I was really enjoying Flicker by Lorde (Kanye Version) because on how it sounded. The vocals were sharp and clear but missed minor details, the instruments were subtle. Since this song has some heavy bass to it, the mids and lows was intense. Lorde’s voice has an echo effect and it has directions – this is what makes the whole song beautiful and enabling the Surround mode did the song some serious justice. Words can’t tell, you need to feel it yourself.

Via USB

Finally, we listened to some songs from our USB Stick. Now, I personally listen to .m4a format and FLAC files as it has better everything overall. Sadly, the soundbar supports AAC, MP3, WAV, OGG, FLAC. If you are someone who uses M4A, ALAC and AIFF, well, it doesn’t support locally. I personally think that the Soundbar handles songs locally really well as there isn’t any compression like streaming via Bluetooth. The quality was slightly better over AUX and almost the same via Bluetooth.

If you are wondering, we tested the speaker with one whole playlist of songs – which we have it locally and on our Apple Music and Spotify. We played DMC: Definitive Edition and Overwatch to test the Gaming mode.

What still leaves me in awe is the fact that the sync between the speaker and subwoofer is really impressive – there isn’t a single delay. This definitely is a one fine piece of hardware.

Conclusion

Overall, I have to say – I had so much fun with the Samsung Soundbar N650 because it has so much potential and man, the sound quality is so good. Considering the fact that it has multiple ways of connecting, super easy setup process and amazing sound quality – we definitely recommend the Samsung Soundbar N650. This soundbar is a dream come true for both gamers and movie buffs out there.

Samsung HW-N650 Panoramic Soundbar
  • Design and Build Quality
  • Specification
  • Sound Quality
  • Connectivity
  • Affordability
  • Value for Money
4.1

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