3.1.2 vs 5.1 Soundbar

Buying new home entertainment equipment may be a complex experience. Some of the most common phrases you’ll encounter while shopping for a new television are “HDTV,” “sound system,” “speakers,” and “TV.” “Dolby Atmos Surround Sound” may be a mystery to you, but your buddy assured you that it was a must-have in your home theater. Maybe you’d want to have the most immersive audio experience possible, but you’re not sure how to go about achieving this goal? What to look for in new home entertainment equipment will be covered in this series.

Soundbars typically include at least five channels for entry-level models. The new ones, on the other hand, have Dolby Atmos. 3.1 2 vs 5.1 Soundbar is becoming more popular, and many people are wondering which is better. The only thing that the two projects have in common is that they both call for the same number of speakers.

If you want to enjoy a really cinematic home theater experience, soundbars are a must-have. Buying a soundbar may be exciting, but it can also be perplexing for those who are unfamiliar with the lingo used in the industry. In general, most people aren’t aware of the 3.1 2 vs 5.1 Soundbar distinction. Which one is the better choice? Find out by reading this article.

What is surround sound?

Sound is an essential component of every film. Sound, in my opinion, is more crucial than a stunning visual presentation. Isn’t it wonderful to be at a place with a mediocre TV but outstanding audio? There’s a good chance you didn’t notice the TV’s screen as much as you normally would. However, even if you’re gazing at the most gorgeous TV screen in the world, you won’t want to watch anything on it if the sound is horrible.

The term “surround sound” refers to sound that fills the surrounding room. If you’re watching a movie, you’ll only be able to hear it via the speakers in front of you. There would be some audio in a movie or TV program that would happen to the side of you, back of you, or even over your head if you were watching it. In order to enhance your movie-going experience, surround sound utilizes numerous audio channels.

The built-in speakers on most televisions aren’t very good. It’s easy to become lost in the sea of options while looking for a home entertainment system. What is Dolby Atmos? 3.1.2-Channels? 5.1-Channels? Break it down for you.

What Do The Numbers On a Sound Bar Mean?

As a result, we must first grasp what these numbers signify before we can compare 2.1, 3.1 and 5.1 soundbars.

A 2.1 soundbar contains two speakers, and these decimals allude to the number of speakers or channels it has. To discover whether or not a subwoofer is included, use the second number.

Dolby Atmos surround-sound is supported by a third number on a soundbar, which indicates that the device has upward-firing speakers.

Main Differences Between Sound Bar Numbers

Assuming you know what the numbers on soundbars signify, let’s look at the differences between the 3.1 2 vs 5.1 soundbar versions, as well as the benefits and drawbacks of each.

Differences between 3.1 2 vs 5.1 soundbar

The main difference between the 3.1.2 and 5.1 soundbars is how many channels they have.

As for 3.1.2 soundbar, it has three channels. One on each side and one in the middle. It also has a subwoofer and two speakers that can play Dolby Atmos music. If you want to listen to music, you’ll need at least one subwoofer and at least one 5.1 soundbar to do it.

However, this isn’t the only difference: Whether your home theater needs a 3.1.2 channel soundbar or even a 5.1 channel soundbar change depending on how well it works. These two types of soundbars are very different from each other in how they look, how they set up, how they connect, and most importantly, how good they sound. Let’s talk about these features in more detail.


The design of a soundbar includes more than just how it looks on the outside. It also includes its weight, dimensions, and build quality, which are all important for setting it up in your home theater.

Both the 3.1 2 and 5.1 soundbars are very small and light, but they are not the same size. The 5.1 channel soundbar, on the other hand, has an extra speaker in it, so it’s a little bigger than the 3.1 2 soundbars. It’s still true that both speakers come with a big subwoofer that can take up a lot of space in the room.

If you have a lot of space, a 5.1 channel soundbar should be a good choice for your home theater set up. However, not all rooms can fit a big soundbar and a subwoofer at the same time, so it’s not always possible. 3.1 2 channel soundbars are better for small rooms with taller roofs because they have three speakers instead of just two. However, soundbars are designed to blend in with your home theater set-up, so it shouldn’t be that big of a deal where you put them.

Audio quality

In terms of audio performance, it is clear that the 3.1.2 channel soundbar will be better than the 5.1 channel soundbar when two speakers are added to the set-up of the soundbar. It turns out that when we looked at the audio performance of the two types of soundbars even more, we found that 3.1.2 soundbars have more dynamic sounds than 5.1 channel soundbars do.

This might be because the center speaker is built into the soundbar. Because the speaker is in the middle, there is a lot of clarity in the dialogue and a lot of detail in the audio response.

In this case, you’ll have to put the soundbar in the middle of the room, right in front of where you’re sitting to listen to the music. Specifically, below the TV. Thus, the speech isn’t as clear, and the audio doesn’t have as many details. In order to get a good 5.1 or 5.2-channel set up, check to see if your rear speakers are wireless.

This is because the 3.1.2 channel soundbar has a channel in its center. This means that both of the other two speakers, the one on the left and the one on the right, don’t have to work harder to make the sound. In this way, each of the three speakers can stand out and do its job very carefully, which means that the audio will be cleaner and more powerful.

When you put the presence speakers on the ceiling above your listening spot or use the Dolby Enabled speakers as the main¬†speakers, make sure you set up your presence speaker layout. The two surround sound speakers that face up add to the immersiveness and make you feel like you’re in the middle of the movie. As you add more Dolby Atmos surround sound speakers, the immersiveness grows even more.

However, the number of channels alone does not have a big impact on how good the audio is. There are other things to keep in mind. In fact, a 3.1.2 channel soundbar with Dolby Digital or DTS can do just as well as a 5.1 soundbar on its own.


It doesn’t matter how many channels there are in each soundbar. They both have the same types of connections. Some good connections include optical and HDMI inputs because they let you get high-quality sound.

Both 3.1 2 and 5.1 soundbars can come with built-in Bluetooth, but it’s not always the case. Wirelessly connect as well as stream content from those other devices can be done with this option, as well. Soundbars can also connect to Wi-Fi.

Both soundbars have the same types of connections, but the types of connections can vary from model to model.


ARC, or Audio Return Channel, is a newer audio technology that is needed for Dolby Atmos surround sound to work properly. It also makes things a lot easier, which is why it is important. If both your TV and sound system support ARC, things are usually very easy to set up for audio.

As long as ARC is working, your TV can control the sound system’s audio without you having to change a remote, as long as ARC is working at the same time. It’s not just that many soundbars now have HDMI ports, so you don’t have to give up any on your TV when you use this new technology.

When HDMI ARC first came out, it didn’t have a lot of support and didn’t work very well. However, in newer TVs and soundbars, ARC is much more stable and can be used more often.


Optical audio is a technology that has been around for a long time and is my favorite, but it isn’t used very often. The cables are very small, and the audio is very good, but optical doesn’t officially support Dolby Atmos surround sound in all its glory.

Fiber optic technology is used to make optical cables that use light to send sound. If you use optical technology, you can make the audio sound as good as it can. Because optical technology can’t be verified, Dolby Atmos surround sound can’t work at its full capacity through the technology.

If you have a standard audio setup, optical will work for you and make things easy, and it’s always going to work. You’ll have tochange the settings on your remote when you use optical, but it’s always going to work.


You may already know how the formats change the sound. If you don’t know what it is, then just know that it is the technology of reducing the size of sound. So, the more compressed the sound is, the more real it sounds. Now that you know about this technology, let’s talk about the difference between 5.1 and 3.1.2.

DTS or Dolby Digital are used to make the 5.1 sound. DTS, on the other hand, has less compression than Dolby Digital, but it is more common. This is the same for the 3.1.2 channel, as well.


Different soundbars cost different amounts even though they have different number of channels built into them. Both of the soundbars have a left and right channel, but the 3.1.2 soundbars have two extra speakers on top of them. This makes the soundbars even better. Because it has three speakers, the 5.1 channel soundbar costs more than the 3.1.2 channel soundbar, but that’s because it has the LCR speaker set up.

Another thing that can affect the price of the soundbars is if they have extra features like voice control and Bluetooth.

Why should you choose 3.1.2 soundbar

  • Excellent center speaker.
  • This is beneficial for more understandable discussion.
  • It is less expensive than a 5.1 soundbar.
  • Two upward-facing speakers provide excellent surround sound.
  • Excellent for compact spaces
  • Choosing a budget-friendly choice

Why should you choose 5.1 soundbar

  • Experience the sound of surround sound.
  • There are two surround speakers included in the package.
  • The choice with the highest level of quality.
  • Perfect for medium-sized or large-sized spaces.
  • Can’t compete with lower-priced soundbars with front-firing speakers on the market..

Top five picks for 5.1 soundbar

Here are five of the top 5.1 soundbars that we have picked out for your sound system:

JBL Bar 5.1

Despite its age, a few years in the world of audio equipment is a drop in the bucket. If you’re looking for a basic 5.1 system, the soundbar is a good option to consider.

For action movies and EDM music, it has a bass that is both punchy and boomy. You can also use a number of wifi devices to send music to the bar, and it features room correction as well. There are no Dolby Atmos support and minimal EQ choices. It’s a novel idea, and one that clearly sets the JBL Bar 5.1 apart from the competition.

Bose Smart Soundbar 900

With Dolby Atmos and conventional content, the Bose Smart Soundbar 900 employs a very distinctive sound design that, although sometimes entertaining, is uneven in its usefulness and only seldom offers a unique layer of organisational structure and tone colour.

Many listeners will likely be quite delighted with its responsive and cinematic performance, which has a remarkably broad soundfield, clear forward projection, and a lively character.

Vizio Elevate

The Vizio Elevate Sound Bar has a striking look that is sure to get people talking. As soon as it detects Dolby Atmos input, you’ll be able to see the Dolby Atmos logo appear on the side speakers.

As a fun party trick, it’s a great way to switch between a 5.1 surround sound soundbar and a basic soundbar. If you want Dolby Atmos sound without spending money on receiver, this is an excellent 5.1 sondbar. However, it has a boomy sound and emphasizes rumbly bass with little clarity in the higher frequencies.

Vizio M Series M512a-H6

For $500 or less, the Vizio M Series M512a-H6 is the finest 5.1 soundbar that we’ve tested. The price-to-performance ratio of this 5.1.2 system with two separate satellite speakers, which provide superb surround sound performance, is outstanding. With Dolby Atmos content, the bar has two up-firing drivers integrated into it that bounce sound off the ceiling and back down towards you to give the sensation of height.

It comes pre-configured with a sound profile that is neutral and balanced, making it ideal for listening to a wide range of audio files. Even EQ settings and bass and treble controls are available to assist you fine-tune its sound. Increasing the volume will allow your favorite movies to fill a huge room.

Sonos Arc with Sub + One SL Speakers

The Sonos Arc with Sub and One SL Speakers is a 5.1 soundbar with DTS compatibility. The Sonos S2 app has just been updated to playback DTS material, which is often used in movies. Otherwise, the two bars have a lot in common when it comes to their performances.

Trueplay is a room correction function that only works with iOS devices. In order to get a more balanced sound, you may utilize the bass and treble controls to reduce the brightness of Trueplay’s sound profile. Dolby Atmos material sounds great on it as well, with a really immersive surround sound experience.

Top five picks for 3.1.2 soundbar

Here are five of the top 3.1.2 soundbars that we have picked out for your sound system:

LG SNYG 3.1.2 Soundbar

An excellent soundbar from 2020, the LG SN8YG is a 3.1.2 model. It boasts a thumpy, bass-heavy sound thanks to its wireless subwoofer, which is likely to thrill lovers of action films or techno music. The remainder of its audio spectrum is quite neutral, so you may still enjoy its sound with other audio material. In addition, there are several sound improvement tools to assist you achieve the optimum sound for your purposes.

However, the surround sound quality is weak, and it must be downmixed into stereo before it can be played, which isn’t ideal if you’d want to be fully engaged in your music. Its up-firing speakers and Atmos capability, on the other hand, make it a standout addition to any home theater system.

Samsung HW-Q800T Sound Bar 3.1.2

The Q800A is one of the most powerful, convincing, detailed, and effective soundbars available at this price point for movie fans. There’s a tremendous amount of bass to be had from the subwoofer, and the system is so solidly built that it doesn’t squeak or buzz even when you’re cranking up the volume on an action movie.

The Sonos Arc soundbar, for example, may appeal to those with a more refined sense of musicality who want a more subdued sound. The Q800A, on the other hand, has a unique ability to provide massive sound from a little speaker. For best results, use it with a Samsung premium TV.

LG Eclair QP5 Sound Bar 3.1.2

Due to the fact that Dolby Atmos soundbars tend to be more expensive and hence bulkier, we were pleasantly surprised by the Eclair. For those who want an Atmos bar that doesn’t take over their living area, this is a bit of a unicorn.

The sound quality is excellent, and the speaker’s design is sleek and contemporary. However, Bluetooth and the ability to connect other LG speakers means it may still be part of a larger system, despite the absence of in-built smart home connectivity.

TCL TS8132 Sound Bar 3.1.2

TCL has one of the cheapest soundbars that can play “real” Atmos sound with built-in height channels. This is one of the best soundbars. And for the price, it sounds great! The TCL TS8132 is a soundbar that is about 1 meter wide. On the other hand, it is dressed in black fabric and has a subwoofer with a down-facing woofer that fits in a small space.

Because it is so cheap, it is one of the best soundbars in the test. If you pay a very low price, you get a wireless subwoofer, Dolby Atmos 3D sound, and built-in “up-firing” height channels, which even sound pretty good if you don’t play the music too loud.

Samsung Q700A Soundbar 3.1.2

A 3.1.2 configuration from the manufacturer’s 2021 portfolio, the Samsung HW-Q700A is featured in this review. It boasts a well-balanced mid-range that allows it to reproduce vocalists and lead instruments with clarity and accuracy. However, it has difficulty reproducing the thud and punch of the bass range, so you don’t get a sense of the deep rumbling that you would expect to hear in action-packed movies.

Despite this, it is capable of playing Dolby Atmos and DTS:X material, and it has other sound improvement capabilities, including Samsung’s Acoustic Beam virtual surround technology, which we did not test.

Verdict: 3.1 2 vs 5.1 soundbar

Now that you know which one is best for you, you can make a better choice. There is 3.1 2 vs 5.1 soundbar for both video games and movies.

These home theaters are the best way to get the best out of anything. You can trust them to do their best. For depth as well as precision, 5.1 is the way to go. The 3.1 2 will make you feel like you’re in the middle of something. So, think about the goal and all the other things that will help you figure out which speaker is best for you.

The editor’s favorite: 5.1 soundbar

Because at the end of the day, everything is up to you and what you want. Keep in mind all the information we have given you, and you should be able to make a decision at the end of the day, like Sheldon Cooper from TBBT. And if you’re still not sure which one to buy, try 7.2 or 5.1.2 Surround Sound.


This FAQ is here to solve some of your problem regarding this soundbar sound system. let’s find out more!

Does Dolby Digital 5.1 mean?

Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround Sound is an audio coding method that can deliver sound with five separate full-range channels, as well as a sixth channel for those powerful low-frequency effects that are felt more than heard in movie theaters. This sixth channel is used for those low-frequency effects that are felt more than heard.

Is 5.1 or 3.1 soundbar better?

What makes a 3.1 soundbar better is that it has a center channel that focuses on dialogue audio. This means that the sound will be clearer. This isn’t clear. It’s not always better to get a 3.1 soundbar. There’s a good reason why both soundbar setups are good.

Does Netflix have 5.1 audio?

Netflix allows you to stream movies with better audio quality so you can enjoy them at home. Most movies and TV shows have high-quality audio that can be streamed, like 5.1 surround sound or Dolby Atmos.

What is the difference between 3.1 and 3.1 2 soundbar?

When you buy a soundbar, the number one is the number of channels it has. If the number is 2, this means your soundbar has a left and right speaker. if the first number is a “3,” then the soundbar has three channels: one for each side and one for the center.