Soundbars aren't just designed for enhancing or boosting the audio of your TV. You can also use these audio accessories to play music. And soundbars with smart assistants like the Google Assistant help you in just that. Unlike conventional speakers, where you'll have to connect it to a smartphone via Bluetooth, these Google Assistant soundbars will help you blast your favorite tunes via simple voice command. Cool, right? And like any soundbar, you can also connect it to your TV or home theatre.
While there are several soundbars with built-in Google assistants, they cost upwards of $700. And most of the affordable ones support Google Assistant but do not have built-in Google Assistant.
We have gone through the available options with a fine-tooth comb and have found the ones suiting the requirement. Do note that when it comes to soundbars and other audio accessories, the term 'affordable' usually ranges between $300 to $500.
If you are looking for some affordable mid-range soundbars with built-in Google Assistant, here are our best recommendations. But first,
The Sonos Arc is more than just your average soundbar. This smart soundbar packs both built-in Google Assistant and a slim and stylish look. This is despite its affordable price tag compared to its peers like Sonos Beam or the LG SN9YG. The audio delivery is spot on and has a rich and thumping bass.
The Google Assistant integration means it can play music from several music sources. So whether it's a YouTube Music playlist or your favorite song, it can play them all with ease. The good part is that the Beam receives all the voice commands without any issues, thanks to the five mics.
Apart from Google Assistant, this one also supports Amazon Alexa and Apple Siri. Quite versatile, we would say.
As noted above, the audio output is pleasant for the price. The vocals are projected clearly and are distinct from the background music. This comes to the picture when you want to connect the soundbar back to the TV.
Though it doesn't have fancy features like Dolby Atmos, the speakers and radiators are arranges cleverly to project the sound around the room. However, do note that the Beam is not designed for bigger rooms.
The highlight of the Bose Soundbar 300 is its low profile yet elegant design and wide soundstage. And for the price, this one packs a punch. It's a tiny 3.0 subwoofer-free setup and does a pretty good job of filling your entertainment room with music and vocals from movies and TV shows.
The Google Assistant is more than just issuing voice commands for playing your favorite music or playlist. The Assistant integration in the Bose Soundbar 300 means you can also operate TV functions without HDMI. This is made possible by the Soundbar 300’s built-in infrared emitter.
Like the Sonos Beam above, this one also doesn't support Dolby Atmos. However, the angular drivers give an immersive experience by making the sound bounce off walls. In comparison, the Soundbar 300 does it better than the Sonos Beam, as per the folks at Digital Trends.
Apart from Google Assistant, the Soundbar 300 works with both Amazon Alexa and Apple AirPlay 2. It also supports SimpleSync, a proprietary Bose tech. Using it, you can connect the soundbar with other wireless Bose speakers (or headphones). While you can stream music, do note that this one doesn't support YouTube Music.
If you can extend your budget by a hundred dollars more, the LG SN8YG makes for a worthy investment. This one is a simple 3.1.2 soundbar and brings a wireless subwoofer to the table. Its highlight is its loud bass which gives off a booming effect. And if you are in the habit of listening to EDM tracks or watching action-packed movies, this soundbar will give you the full-blown effect. No kidding.
However, the feature that differs it from the above soundbars is its support for Dolby Atmos, which is responsible for delivering precise and immersive audio. Furthermore, you can also calibrate the soundbar using the LG app to get the most out of the soundbar.
Like the ones above, this soundbar has built-in Google Assistant. Apart from voice commands, you can also ask the assistant to tweak the volume levels, among others.
However, do note that the high bass can result in slightly muffled dialogs. And compared to the soundbars above (even though this one is expensive), the soundstage is a bit narrow.
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Last but not least, you can have a peek at the Polk Audio Signa S3. This one is an affordable soundbar and costs a lot less than its counterparts above. It supports Chromecast and works with Google Assistant. By works with, we mean it doesn't have built-in Google Assistant. However, if you connect it to a Google Home device, you can issue voice commands. For now, it supports a wide array of music streaming apps such as Spotify, Amazon Music HD, and Tidal, among others.
For its price, it delivers punchy audio, whether you are listening to your favorite tracks or watching some movies.
If you want the best performance for the price and can do without Dolby Atmos, the Bose soundbar makes for a good buy. It's not too expensive and has an elegant design. However, if the idea of a wireless sub-woofer sounds enticing to you, then the LG SN8YG is a good pick.
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