A soundbar with personality
There aren’t that many good alternatives of improving the audio quality of your HDTV, but Samsung’s new HW-D450 is supposed to be quite a worthy creation. This sound bar was made to be straightforward and at the same time offer consistent performance, unlike many other gadgets in this category. The only problem you’ll presumably encounter is with midrange. But more on this device in the following review.
Perfect design for 40 inch TVs
The Samsung HW-D450 will definitely answer the prayers of those of you who are unsatisfied with the sound offered by your TVs, but not in such an impressive way that you’ll have to rush to the nearest store and buy it. During our testing phase the product we’re discussing in this review was able to easily improve the audio quality of the HDTV we were using while at the same time keep a low profile. This soundbar, we noticed, was designed to be used by 40 inch TVs, so remember that if you want to buy the device. General appearance is somewhat reminiscent of the HW-D550 model; but once you start using the HW-4450 you’ll see some differences between the two members of the same line, with depth, sound in the midrange and clarity being some of them.
Without HDMI connectors
But let’s develop the design aspect for a bit. The sound bar we tested was, as hinted at, almost identical in looks with its bigger brother, the HW-D550. The profile is configured with the usual visible drivers on each side of the bar and there’s also a similar wireless subwoofer present. The HW-D450 is, however, smaller and heavier. The back features 2 optical audio inputs and one 3.5mm input, but no HDMI options, which is a shame, because you won’t have the possibility of using the gadget as a two-device HDMI switch if you own an old TV set. But we found a way to do that, though: we just ran an optical audio cable from our HDTV’s output to the sound bar input after which we left the HDTV in question do a HDMI switching. Whenever we wanted to change a setting on the Samsung HW-D450, the screen emitted a blue LED, a detail which we liked a lot.
3D surround sound
This sound bar comes with the same-looking remote control as on the HW-D550, so using the product won’t give you headaches. But it had some functions that didn’t work on the device we rated; the Channel Down/Up and the Audio and HDMI Anynet were incapable of doing something useful. There’s a key on this remote control that turns simulated 3D surround sound on and off, delivering or stopping a fuller sound field. We think it would have been better to see a smaller remote control, considering its fewer options.
Weak midrange performance
The Samsung HW-D450 provides users with the following audio modes: News, Cinema, Game and Classical. Not many, true, but decent when it came to performance. Out of the 4, the Cinema one was the best, because it produced great vocals while the other modes delivered flat sounds.
Audio quality for this sound bar is good. Bass levels tend to get very loud, so if you have annoying neighbors, turn the volume up and wake them up with this device. The wireless subwoofer rendered a song’s bass notes distortion-free. The weak point of the HW-D450: midrange performance. Voices began to sound weird and tiny, even when we turned the volume up.
Long story short, Samsung’s HW-D450 is the kind of product that best fits people who have never owned a sound bar before. To all the others: look for something else.
|Number of Channel: 2.1|
|Maximum Power: 80W x 2 + 120W|
|2 Way 3 Speaker|
|i-Pod(Optional, WDC 10)|
|1 x Audio Input connector|
|2 x Optical Input connector|
|External size & Weight|
|Packing Dimension (W x H x D): 1032 x 462 x 246mm|
|Net Dimension (W x H x D): 957 x 45 x 92mm|
|Total Weight: 2.25kg|