Large flat panel or flat-screen TVs offer terrific image fidelity and performance when it comes to video, and though many feature good built-in speakers, they’re usually not the height of audiophile performance (even the best TVs can do with some improvement in this regard). However, a dedicated sound system including large speakers for your TV isn’t always possible space-wise. If you’re wondering how to mount a soundbar to your tv, there are several guidelines that should work for nearly all models of tv and soundbar.

KEY TAKEAWAYS:

  • Mounting your soundbar directly to your TV is the best option for most people
  • 3.1 soundbar models offer better surround sound performance than 2.1 models
  • Always install your soundbar so that it will be at ear level when seated

You won’t need more than a Phillips-Head screwdriver and about 10 minutes of your time to get the job done.

Soundbar Mounting Tips

When it comes to soundbars for your TV, you have quite a few options to choose from, but there are some basic guidelines you should follow for installing most models:

  • Make sure not to block the infrared (IR) receiver on your tv. Your remote connects to your tv using an infrared signal. The IR receiver is usually located along the bottom front edge of the screen. Blocking it with your soundbar will interfere with your remote’s functionality.
  • Be sure to center your Soundbar under your TV. Setting it more to one side or the other will create a disconnected listening experience, especially when it comes to spatial perception in stereo sound.
  • Install your soundbar at ear level- for the same reason you should center your soundbar, you should install it so that it’s approximately at ear level when you’re seated in front of the TV- this will create the best sense of focus to your audio.
  • Leave space for access at the bottom or top of your TV. Your TV likely has buttons and possible connection ports along the top or bottom edge (or both) that shouldn’t be obstructed by your soundbar.

Finally, remember to organize wires behind the TV. This is a smart way to avoid tripping on wires or getting injured.

How to Mount a Soundbar

Here are the steps you’ll need to take that will apply to most TVs and Soundbars. You’ll generally need a Phillip’s Head screwdriver for the job.

  1. Buy a universal soundbar to TV bracket- quality brackets can be found for as little as $10, though you may want to spend a little more to get a sturdier model if you have an active family household.
  2. Remove your TV from the wall if it’s mounted- you won’t be able to correctly mount your soundbar otherwise.
  3. Remove the TV’s wall mount bracket if necessary and note the bracket placement.
  4. Making sure your soundbar will fit in the brackets, attach the soundbar bracket and tv wall mount bracket if used to the TV
  5. If using a wall mount, remount the TV on the wall, then attach your soundbar to its bracket

Again, while some steps may be slightly different depending on your TV and soundbar models, these steps and guidelines should apply well to nearly all situations. And while you are in the mood for some DIY, you can also change your dumb TV into a smart TV, so you can enjoy all the features and benefits of a smart TV.

Warning

Make sure not to block the infrared (IR) receiver on your tv. Your remote connects to your tv using an infrared signal.

F.A.Q.

How do I choose the right mounting bracket for my soundbar?

Most soundbar brackets and mounting systems will list their compatibility with the size and model of your soundbar, but a good general rule of thumb is that they share the same size mounting sockets and that the bracket is adjustable or sized to fit your soundbar.


Should I mount my soundbar directly to my TV?

The main advantage of mounting your soundbar directly to your TV is that it will go where the TV will, meaning adjustments to the TV’s position, tilt, room placement, etc, won’t throw off the focus between your audio and visual. For that reason, it’s generally advisable to mount your soundbar to your TV.


What does a TV soundbar do?

A soundbar is an all-purpose speaker/audio solution that provides top-quality audio for TVs without taking up the space of a full audio system with separate speakers.


Which is better, a 2.1 or 3.1 soundbar?

If you’re going to be using surround sound, a 2.1 model will generally have a less realistic surround sound audio image than 3.1, but the difference is less noticeable for standard stereo sound.


STAT: Most TV soundbars are self-powered (source)

STAT: 95% of soundbar owners install and mount theirs below their TV set (source)

STAT: Altec-Lansing introduced the first soundbar system for audio in 1998 (source)

Jed Smith

I'm a musician and recording engineer and live in Queens. I have a cat. Her name is Elsa. I love to write about consumer tech and musical instruments.

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