There are many soundbars in the market today and many of them are great while some aren’t but among the great ones are also the affordably great ones which is where the new Vizio V21 stands. The device offers an interesting pack of audio quality allowing it to ace it’s predecessor the Vizio SB361n-E8 which was released back in 2017.
Aside being an affordable soundbar, it just doesn’t look like a cheap-ish device at all. he inclusion of some interesting quirks and features such as an HDMI and a much more better Bluetooth connectivity makes the device modern like a true 2020 soundbar.
The audio output is great and sounds really natural though not as what you’ll hear in some pretty much expensive soundbars but for US$200, this is one of the greatest and it definitely ranks above in the midst.
Combined with a giant TV in your living room and you’ll be living in heaven. It stands independently on its own which is part of why it’s cool making it usable with other devices thanks to it’s Bluetooth connectivity which means your smartphone can become your audio system.
I got to ask myself “Who needs expensive and space-consuming audio systems any longer” when you can just use the Vizio V21 and connect a smart mobile device to it and then you’re at the party in your home already but that’s not where it ends because there is even much more.
Features of the Vizio V21
The design of the Vizio V21 is traditional because it’s of course just a soundbar meant to just produce audio for TV or whatever output device being connected on to it. At the top of the soundbar comes a row of control buttons which includes the Bluetooth control and volume rockers.
The plastic texture with mesh design of the device makes it firm and it measures 36 inches and features a 2.1 channel just as the name denotes V21 much like it’s predecessor whose name is basically the mixture of the length 36-inches and 2.1 channels hence SB3621.
The color of choice is also being swapped out for black in place of silver and it sports a rear port with it’s driver producing it’s audio down ways.
Also Vizio V21 has an updated LED display as well in place of the older white dots. The new display show things such as the volume level and other inputs.
Remember I mentioned the inclusion of HDMI ARC port and on the Vizio V21, it helps in connecting one cable directly to the ARC port right at the back of a TV with which you can stream features which are built into the TV itself or better still use the TV as an input switch.
The soundbar also has an optical connection which can be used in rather complicated scenarios. But the HDMI isn’t the only mode of connectivity as there also is Bluetooth, USB and 3.5mm analog input which can be used for voice assistant speaker.
The fact that this is made possible is interesting and kudos to Vizio on this one. But you can as well connect your smart speaker to the ports on the Vizio V21 while the soundbar will auto switch to the input when you command it to do so.
With that, one can say the company did it’s homework well enough especially as more people now own smart home speakers such as the Amazon Echo Dot for things like streaming of podcasts or for plainly listening to music.
The Vizio is generous enough to add up a remote control to this but maybe that’s not too much to ask because you don’t want to be standing up all the time to do something on the device itself which is where the remote comes in. It also needs to be kept safe as losing it means you lose the speaker’s color-coded input which is printed rigtht at the back of the remote which the documentation failed to include.
What the Vizio V21 sounds like?
The the V21 sounds pretty good for what its worth and it sounds even better than the previous model in many ways. Trying it against a number of alternatives, there is a sure difference in terms of comparison although it costs just US$20 more than the previous version at US$180.
One of the reason why the Vizio V21 sounds pretty good is due to its DTS virtual:X compatibility which was first seen on Yamaha speakers which basically let the soundbar emulate a surround sound and yes, it does it well.
The V21 also has a quite good bass but compared to the other alternatives like the JBL Deep Bass 2.1 which offers a much more ground shaking (not really) but you get the point… The Virtual:X inclusion in the V21 makes it better. The type of music you play on both devices will determine the output. I like rap music which is usually heavy with bass while sounds like pop music or electro-pop are better with the V21.
Another thing is watching movies with the V21 whereby their dialog is usually clear and more pronounced. Movie sound effects like bullets, arrows would usually sound really great.
The most-expensive JBL Deep Bass 2.1 was the most fun in this scene. The larger sub was able to catch more of the low frequency effects — from the pad of the thanator’s footfalls to the gentle roar of the waterfall — and the jungle sounded more alive with insects and running water.
Should you buy the Vizio V21?
Yes but that answer also depends on your needs and what you want personally. What type of music you like or the main purpose of purchasing a soundbar in the first place. So with that answered, you can be rest assured the Vizio V21 will be a good buy for you.
It offers an immersive audio quality and the design is great and firm. It’s solid and sports a number of connection alternatives which makes it much more pronounced than the rest. For US$200 you get a Bluetooth-enabled and HDMI featured soundbar with a number of control systems for both it’s input and output systems.
Great audio system with quality output that can connect to an array of devices ranging from TV to smart speakers
- DTS Virtual:X for better audio
- Great overall home audio quality
- Multiple connection modes
- Subwoofer not very great
- Gimmicky voice assistant support
- Product description not well done
Value for money