The television industry, which faced a bit of flux recently, seems to be picking up the pace yet again, and with smart TVs now dominating homes around the world, it seems that the market is all set to play host new television sets and technology for years to come. Along with these new TVs, another peripheral device that is gaining popularity worldwide is the Soundbar.
Sometimes, the audio output of the TV itself, may not be enough or immersive enough for your liking, in this case, a Soundbar helps enhance the output and experience and deliver some serious cinematic feels to everyone in the room. A brand that has been making big strides in this real is Philips, and fortunately, we were able to get our hands on the new Philips Fidelio B97 Soundbar.
We have reviewed a few soundbar devices in the past, so when we got hold of this, we were actually expecting much more of the same, with a few additions on the cosmetic front, but we were pleasantly sur- prised to see that the Fidelio B97 Soundbar, was actually everything we expected in a soundbar device, and then some.
In this review, we will take a closer look at the new Philips Fidelio B97 7.1.2 Channel Soundbar Soundbar and its pros and cons, so that you can ultimately decide whether it is the right fit for you or not.
We always love well-designed packaging and Philips, who is one of the best when it comes to creating some truly cool packaging material, has pulled off a masterclass here as well. The black base color with the product image on top truly displays the beauty of the B97 Soundbar. The critical specifications of the devices are carefully and aesthetically arranged across the entire packaging in a way that doesn’t take away the absolute pleasure of even viewing the packaging as a whole.
As seen on the box, the PHILIPS FIDELIO B97 7.1.2 CHANNEL SOUNDBAR is compatible with Dolby Vision and Dolby Atmos.
This is useful if you are streaming high-quality content that has been shot using these standards. Along with these, the PHILIPS FIDELIO B97 7.1.2 CHANNEL SOUNDBAR is also compatible with Blue- tooth, HDMI, DTS Play-Fi, Chromecast, Apple TV among others.
On opening the packaging, the first thing that we saw was the soundbar itself. Be careful while taking it out of the box as it is quite tightly packed in. Along with that, we also have the Subwoofer device in its own box. Next, we got hold of the power cable and power adapters, the quick start guide, and a very sleek remote. Philips has also bundled in an AIC cable, in case you feel the need for it at any given point in time. The PHILIPS FIDELIO B97 7.1.2 CHANNEL SOUNDBAR peaks at 888 watts power & 240 watts of that are given over to the subwoofer. The guarantee card is also included along with the paperwork, so make sure you go through the packaging and retain the guarantee card.
Now, with all the components out of the box, let’s get into the review.
Design and Build
If there is one thing that Philips always seems to get right, it’s the design and builds. Every little and big product that comes from the house of Philips is a work of art and the PHILIPS FIDELIO B97 7.1.2 CHANNEL SOUNDBAR is no different. Yes, the sheer width of the soundbar with the speakers connected, may throw you off, and it may even overshadow the width of the television that is above it, but when you look at the 5.6cm of height, you will be compelled to marvel at how they have managed to fit everything in such a slim package. You do get fittings that allow you to mount the B97 to a wall, and it looks rather neat, but when you see that the depth of the soundbar measures in at 12cm, you may get weird ideas like using it as a shelf as well. Make sure you don’t do anything like that.
The build itself is very impressive. The rather long soundbar meant that the designers at Philips had to work with a lot of perforated metal, but they have done an incredible job. What stands out the most, is the smoked aluminum accents around the magnetic unions with the detachable modules, the endcaps of the modules themselves, and the little stands they sit in when being used as rear surround-sound speakers, give an up-market appearance, too.