JBL Soundbars
compared

JBL - The American speaker-expert

Starting from lightweight Bluetooth speakers up to extensive sound systems: The JBL product range offers pretty much everything you need for good sound.
The American manufacturer has stood for excellent sound for decades. Of course, a rich selection of soundbars should not be missing in the portfolio.

JBL Soundbars 2022 compared

JBL has released not one but several soundbars in 2022. Among them are once again models with external Subwoofers and strong bass. In addition, some models have got an improved replacement.

JBL Bar 500
Bar 500
JBL Bar 2.1 Deep Bass (MK2)
Bar 2.1 Deep Bass (MK2)
Model year 2022 2022
Channels 5.1 2.1
Dolby Atmos
DTS
HDMI 2.1 1x In + 1x Out
eARC
WLAN
Room size above 40 m2 up to 40 m2
Subwoofer External External
Satellites
Dimensions Height x Width x Depth 56 x 1017 x 103 mm 56 x 965 x 85 mm

JBL Bar 500 2022
5.1 channel setup with powerful subwoofer

JBL Bar 500
Room size
above 40 m2
Channels
5.1

JBL Bar 500 Connections

HDMI 2.1 InHDMI OutHDMI eARCDigital opticalLAN-Ethernet
Dolby Atmos
Set
Soundbar + Subwoofer
  • 590W total power
  • External subwoofer
  • Smart Features
  • Virtual 3D sound
  • Room Calibration
  • HDMI eARC
  • No height channels
  • No integrated voice assistants
  • No DTS

The JBL Bar 500 does not come with detachable satellite speakers. Nevertheless, it has five main channels, but no up-firing speakers. It can still play Dolby Atmos content, but it has to create the immersive sound experience virtually via MultiBeam technology. You also have to do without DTS content with this soundbar.

With an output power of 590 watts, the JBL Bar 500 offers enough power to sound even larger rooms at parties. The external subwoofer provides deep bass. Conversations and dialogues are also not neglected thanks to the PureVoice technology for speech enhancement.

The JBL Bar 500 hasn’t skimped on modern features either: it comes with an HDMI eARC connection with 4K Dolby Vision Passthrough, just like with integrated Chromecast, Airplay and Alexa Multi-Room Music.

JBL Bar 2.1 Deep Bass (MK2) 2022
Two-piece setup with strong bass

JBL Bar 2.1 Deep Bass (MK2)
Room size
up to 40 m2
Channels
2.1

JBL Bar 2.1 Deep Bass (MK2) Connections

HDMI 2.0 InHDMI OutHDMI ARCDigital optical
Set
Soundbar + Subwoofer
  • 300W total power
  • External subwoofer
  • Bluetooth
  • HDMI ARC
  • Dolby Digital
  • No DTS
  • Few connections
  • Only stereo sound

The JBL Bar 2.1 Deep Bass has already been released in its second version. The addition “Deep Bass” stands for the powerful, external subwoofer that is included in the scope of delivery. With it, the 2.1-channel setup has a total output of 300 watts. Thus, it is also suitable for a party or somewhat larger rooms.

The JBL Bar 2.1 Deep Bass only supports Dolby Digital as a sound format. DTS content, on the other hand, cannot be decoded by it. The connection to the TV can be made via HDMI ARC. In addition, the soundbar has another HDMI input.

Due to the lower price, this model also skimped on smart features. Thus, the integrated Bluetooth interface has to be used to transfer content wirelessly to it.

Older JBL Soundbars compared

JBL focuses on room-filling sounds and a strong bass in its soundbar models, regardless of whether they come with or without a separate subwoofer. In order to serve every price segment, the US company offers setups of different dimensions, which are equipped with more or less features. 

JBL Bar 9.1
Bar 9.1
JBL Bar 5.0 MultiBeam
Bar 5.0 MultiBeam
Model year 2020 2021
Channels 5.1.4 5
Dolby Atmos
DTS DTS HD-Master + DTS:X
HDMI 2.1 1x In + 1x Out 1x In + 1x Out
eARC
WLAN
Room size above 40 m2 up to 25 m2
Subwoofer External
Satellites
Dimensions Height x Width x Depth 62 x 884 x 120 mm 58 x 709 x 101 mm

JBL Bar 9.1 2020
3D surround sound system with freely placeable battery satellites

Room size
above 40 m2
Channels
5.1.4

JBL Bar 9.1 Connections

HDMI 2.1 InHDMI OutHDMI eARCDigital opticalLAN-Ethernet
Dolby Atmos
Set
Soundbar + Subwoofer + Satellites
  • 820W total power
  • External subwoofer
  • Wireless battery satellites
  • Impressive surround sound
  • Room correction
  • HDMI eARC, Wi-Fi & Bluetooth
  • Dolby Atmos & DTS:X
  • No Dialogue Enhancement Feature
  • No Equalizer

The JBL Bar 9.1 is one of the more extensive models from LG. It is a 5.1.4 channel soundbar, which means that it has four Dolby Atmos/DTS:X height channels. The highlights of the soundbar are two detachable satellite speakers that can be placed wirelessly in the room. Just like the soundbar itself, they are equipped with up-firing speakers that provide an immersive listening experience. In addition, the soundbar features room correction, which adjusts the acoustics to the room and thus improves the sound even more.

In addition to its 3D sound, the JBL Bar 9.1’s variety of smart features is also impressive: Thanks to its Wi-Fi connectivity, built-in Chromecast and Apple Airplay, content can be streamed easily. A traditional Bluetooth connection is also available.

JBL Bar 5.0 MultiBeam 2021
Kompaktes Klangwunder mit virtuellem 3D Sound

Room size
up to 25 m2
Channels
5

JBL Bar 5.0 MultiBeam Connections

HDMI 2.1 InHDMI OutHDMI eARCDigital opticalLAN-Ethernet
Dolby Atmos
Set
Soundbar
  • 250W total power
  • Virtual Dolby Atmos
  • MultiBeam Surround Sound
  • HDMI eARC
  • Room correction feature
  • Multiroom option
  • Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, Chromecast & Airplay
  • Voice assistant compatible
  • No DTS
  • No graphic equalizer

With a width of just little over twenty-seven inches, the JBL Bar 5.0 MultiBeam is one of the more compact soundbars. Despite the rather small size, however, it has enough punch and gets relatively loud. While its bass could be a bit deeper, the soundbar is all the more convincing in quiet scenes: Thanks to its center speaker, dialogs are reproduced clearly and distinctly.

As its name suggests, the soundbar features JBL’s MultiBeam technology, which is supposed to provide immersive sound even without up-firing speakers. It also supports Virtual Dolby Atmos, meaning that Atmos content is converted to surround content for playback.

Those who want to use the JBL Bar 5.0 MultiBeam to stream music have all sorts of options to do so: Both Bluetooth and Wi-Fi are supported by it and Chromecast as well as Apple Airplay are integrated.

JBL Bar 5.0 MultiBeam Review