Important Specs Overview
Speaker type: powered, 2 channel, sealed (soundbar); powered, ported (subwoofer)
Continuous power handling: 96 W (total, *approximated)
Peak power handling: 320 W
Frequency response range: 40 – 20k Hz
Wireless: Bluetooth compatible
Warranty: 1 year
*When nominal/RMS power isn’t specified by manufacturer, we use an approximation of ~30% of the specified peak/dynamic power for comparison purposes.
Review and Discussion
Samsung has a variety of 2.1 soundbar systems, which give the user an easy, out of the box way to enhance default TV speakers without needing to deal with bulky and complicated traditional av equipment.
The main limitation of soundbars is that their thin nature simply doesn’t allow for large enough woofers to reproduce decent bass, but, many systems such as this one add in a separate subwoofer to solve the problem. The cumulative result of this 2.1 system is a combined ~ 100 W of (approximated) continuous power output and a response floor of 40 Hz. For the price and convenience? These are actually quite impressive specs for a soundbar system.
Both the soundbar and subwoofer have a pretty understated, minimalist design that should seamlessly blend in with just about any TV. Other companies have slicker and more prominent designs, if you care about that. Each unit is bluetooth compatible and can be controlled with either the included remote or an app that can be used with your smart phone or tablet. Samsung offers 1 year of warranty protection for residential use, which is pretty bare minimum in the audio world but fairly standard for cheaper soundbar systems.
Our Overall Take, As Compared to the Competition
The HW-M450 / ZA caught our eye recently because we’ve seen it sell for incredibly cheap, albeit from 3rd party vendors in some cases, which does pose a risk, and be careful that the original warranty might not apply. If you’re looking for a cheap and easy to bolster your default TV speakers to decent caliber sound, and you’re able to secure a decent and reliable discount, the HW-M450/ZA 2.1 offers a lot of volume for the price, definitely more so than similarly priced and popular competitors from VIZIO.