Soundbar Above or Below TV: Which Option is Better?

Placing the soundbar above your TV can improve sound quality and prevent obstructions, but it may not be aesthetically pleasing.
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The position of a soundbar can make a significant difference in its performance. Even the best of the soundbars will sound distorted if not placed correctly.

This article will help us understand the importance of soundbar placement and possible speaker placement options. Choosing an optimal location will help with crisp audio.

Why the Placement of the Soundbar is so Important

When you get a new soundbar, the idea is to get the best audio. But without the right positioning, the sound will not be ideal. 

If you place the soundbar in the wrong place, it will make the sound move in the wrong directional round. Ideally, the sound has to bounce through the ceiling back and forth to provide the best audio quality. 

To create a home theater experience, ensure that the placement is correct. Moreover, every soundbar fits into different positions; thus, research thoroughly for the best experience.

You can place the soundbar on a cabinet, stand, table, or furniture or mount it below or above the television. But the right soundbar placement is critical for optimal audio performance.

6 Reasons You Should Place the Soundbar Below a TV

People often wonder whether to mount the bose soundbar above or below the TV; many prefer to place it below the television. Below are the reasons why it is so common.

Aesthetically Pleasing

Many soundbars are designed for placing below the TV. If you position them above, they will not look right visually. Moreover, it will feel that the sound effect is flowing over the head. It will be even more evident if they are upward-firing speakers.

Superior Audio Performance

If you setup the soundbar below the TV, it will be at eye level. And thus, the audio will directly come to the viewer. 

The sound wavelength will not scatter or reflect away; thus, it will have a lesser echo. The audio experience is better if the soundbar, by default, is placed under the TV or is a front-firing soundbar.

Easy Wiring

Soundbar can be wired or wireless. The connectors are present at the bottom of the TV. When you place the soundbar below TV, wiring becomes simpler. Furthermore, concealing the wiring becomes uncomplicated when the soundbar is below or in front of the TV. 

No Mounting Needed

A soundbar is expected to be mobile; thus, mounting it to the wall is not ideal. When you put it below the TV, there is no need to mount the soundbar. But that is not the case when placing it above the TV.

You might have to put the soundbar on a glass or stand over the TV while mounting the stand first. When you place the soundbar on a table below the TV, you can easily move it conveniently. But you will not get the flexibility if you mount it above the TV.

To Enhance the Soundbar Design

Most soundbars are forward-firing. Having them at eye level ensures no obstruction between the listener and the soundbar. 

When you place them above the TV or not around eye level, the sound waves bounce through the room before reaching you. The indirect path of the audio will result in diffraction and reflection. Thus, the audio will distort. 

It allows for Remote Connection 

One critical factor that people often overlook is the connection between the soundbar and its remote. The remote must have a clear path for the infrared beams to control the soundbar. 

Placing the soundbar below the television provides an unobstructed path for remote connection. Keeping the soundbar above or on the ground will require you to hold the remote over the head or closer to the ground. 

5 Reasons You Should Mount the Soundbar Above a TV

While a soundbar is usually placed below the TV, there are instances when placing the Dolby atmos soundbar above the TV is a better option. 

Upward-Firing Soundbar Speakers Must Go Above the TV

Soundbars having upward-firing speakers should not be placed below. They are designed to reflect the sound waves from the ceiling for the best acoustics. 

The upward-firing soundbar has the design to use the physical space of the room to provide a better and more immersive audio experience. Moreover, they have Dolby Atmos technology for the best results. 

Make sure not to place it too close to the ceiling, as the sound might not ricochet properly. 

No Remote Sensor Blocking Issues

When the soundbar is placed close to the bottom bezel of the TV, it might come in between the TV remote and the sensor. Having the soundbar above the TV will remove this issue. It will not block the TV remote sensor, allowing you to control it easily.

Ideal for Low-Lying Seating or TV Stand

Mounting the soundbar above the TV looks better and provides a good audio experience when the TV is positioned lower than eye level. The TV could be lower when the seating arrangement is closer to the floor. Thus, the soundbar can be placed above it.

Anti-Kids and Pets

Placing the soundbar below the TV can be a menace if you have kids or pets at home. They will have easy access to the equipment and continue fiddling regularly. 

Ideal for Home Theaters and Tiered Seating 

Rooms designed as home theaters will benefit if the soundbar is placed above the TV. Some factors that make placing the soundbar above ideal are:

  • Tiered seating area
  • Lower viewing area
  • High ceilings

Issues You Might Encounter with Soundbar Placement


Most televisions have a remote control receiver located at the bottom bezel. The soundbar can block the remote receiver when placed below the TV. In these cases, it is better to place it above the TV. 

But sometimes, the wires might not be long enough to position them above the TV. Such cases will require the soundbar to be placed below. the distance between the TV and the soundbar is critical for minimal wiring. 

Upward Firing or Non-Upward Firing Speakers 

When placing the soundbar, it is critical to consider whether it has upward-firing speakers. If the soundbar is upward-firing and uses the reflectors below the TV, they must be positioned below. 

But if the soundbar is upward-firing and needs the ceilings to act as the reflector, then positioning the sonos beam above the TV is better. You have to ensure it is not too close to the ceiling. Try to have a minimum distance of one meter between the ceiling and the sound bar. 

So, Are TV Soundbars Worth It? 

TV soundbars are affordable and extremely convenient to use. They help with the viewing and listening experience by providing better stereo sound quality. You can experience the sound system like a theater at home. 

Moreover, installing these products is easy. You can check the user manual and install it within minutes. 

Places to Avoid Mounting a Soundbar

Soundbars provide the best sound quality, but positioning them too low or high above the ear level can make the quality poor. 

Some mounts have a hinged feature that allows you to direct the sound in your desired direction. 

Try avoiding placing them in a way that blocks the TV. The best option is to mount it above the TV and angle it downwards for surround sound. 

Whenever installing a soundbar, ensure that the speaker is not blocked and is towards the seating location. It ensures that the sound reaches your ear without delay. 

Placing the soundbar where it will look good but not have the best performance is pointless. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Can Soundbars Be Wall Mounted?

Yes, you can wall-mount the soundbars. You can mount them directly to the wall with the help of a mounting bracket. Or you can mount it to the TV itself. Ensure that the power cord reaches the connector. 

Where Should You Mount Your Soundbar?

Try to mount the soundbar as close to the TV as possible. You can mount it below or above based on the variables. They can also be mounted to the wall with brackets or placed on stands, TV cabinets, TV racks, or tables beside or below the TV. 

Should You Mount a Soundbar to the Wall or TV?

Soundbar can be mounted to both walls or the TV. It depends on the specification of the room and the soundbar. There are universal brackets for the soundbar, or you can choose brand-specific mounts designed explicitly for a soundbar. 

Should You Hire a Professional to Install Your Soundbar Wall Mount?

Installing a soundbar is pretty straightforward. If you have DIY experience with access to basic tools like a drill, screwdrivers, and levels, you can install the soundbar yourself without hassle. But if you do not feel comfortable handling these tools, you can always get a professional for help. 

Can You Position a Soundbar Vertically?

People often wonder if a soundbar can be placed to the side of a TV or vertically, and the answer is yes. But it is not advisable to do the same. The soundbars are designed for horizontal mounting above or below the TV for the best sound quality. Placing it elsewhere will result in a loss of sound quality. 

Should the Dolby Atmos soundbar be above or below the TV? 

Check whether the speaker configuration is upward-firing, and place the soundbar accordingly. Ensure that the path for the sound is clear to the reflector, like a ceiling. 

Could You Use A Soundbar In A Car? 

You can use a soundbar in a car. It will be convenient to use a one with Bluetooth connection for the best connectivity and use. It will take up lesser space compared to a stereo unit system. 

Where Is The Best Place To Put A Soundbar?

The best choice to place a soundbar can be above or below the TV. But ensure that the built-in speakers faces the listening area and there is no hindrance between the device and the listener. 

How Can I Reduce The Echo/Reverb In A Large Room If I Can't Add Physical Damping?

It will help to bring the sound directly to the audience as much as possible. A small acoustic ensemble will be beneficial as it will have fewer reverb issues.

About The Author
• Editor In Chief
José is a veteran audiophile with an MSc in Engineering, and a passion for sharing his audio knowledge with others.
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