Sony HT-X8500: Not happy with the sound. What to choose instead?

I just got a Sony HT-X8500 and was excited to play with it. It looks very nice, supports Dolby Atmos, DTS:X, HDMI eARC and 4K passthrough.

BUT. The sound quality is disappointing. Voice and dialogue sound muffled and distant. They are not crisp and defined. Yes, I have tried all the settings. This is another annoying thing about this soundbar - you can't see what you're doing without the instruction manual.

What would you suggest instead? I'm looking at Sonos Beam and JBL Bar 5.0 MultiBeam. I'm willing to stretch my budget for the right device, though. I even looked at Sonos Arc, but it's just too long for my setup.

Thank you!
 

Tim2049

Well-known Member
I'm into my second week of owning a Beam. I can't speak of the competition, but I'm blown away by its performance.

If dialogue is an area you found lacking in the Sony I can safely say you won't be disappointed by how the Sonos handles it. Very clear indeed and the 'night mode/speech enhancer' features are really effective...
 
I'm into my second week of owning a Beam. I can't speak of the competition, but I'm blown away by its performance.

If dialogue is an area you found lacking in the Sony I can safely say you won't be disappointed by how the Sonos handles it. Very clear indeed and the 'night mode/speech enhancer' features are really effective...

Sounds great! Yes, the Sony is good for music and action, but dialogue suffers hugely. I should be getting my Beam today, excited to test it. Thank you! :)
 

zubeir

Well-known Member
What about the JBL Bar 5.0 MultiBeam?
Are you after a soundbar without a sub?
 
What about the JBL Bar 5.0 MultiBeam?
Are you after a soundbar without a sub?
I'm looking at that one as well. They both have a trial period so I am thinking of testing them both to see which one I like better. Yes, I want a soundbar without a separate sub.
 

zubeir

Well-known Member
I'm looking at that one as well. They both have a trial period so I am thinking of testing them both to see which one I like better. Yes, I want a soundbar without a separate sub.
Ok, without a sub then I would definitely trial out the JBL 5.0. Has EARC, 4k DV pass through etc. I'm not sure if it handles DTS though.
The Denon 550 has had some good feedback , but I think it's very expensive for a bar without a sub
 
Ok, without a sub then I would definitely trial out the JBL 5.0. Has EARC, 4k DV pass through etc. I'm not sure if it handles DTS though.
The Denon 550 has had some good feedback , but I think it's very expensive for a bar without a sub
I'll try the JLB, too. However, I'm beginning to understand that support for Dolby Atmos, DTS and other proprietary formats means nothing if the basic dialogue sound the bar outputs is not great. :)
 

zubeir

Well-known Member
I'll try the JLB, too. However, I'm beginning to understand that support for Dolby Atmos, DTS and other proprietary formats means nothing if the basic dialogue sound the bar outputs is not great. :)
After my inconsistent issues with the Sony G700 soundbar, I am not sure what to go for. At the moment it's between the Samsung HW-Q70T 3.1.2 or the LG SN9YG 5.1.2
 

GRS67

Active Member
I'll try the JLB, too. However, I'm beginning to understand that support for Dolby Atmos, DTS and other proprietary formats means nothing if the basic dialogue sound the bar outputs is not great. :)
First time posting, I thought I would give my impression of the new JBL 5.0 soundbar which I've had since last weekend.

I'm really happy with the Soundbar and it was very easy to set up, the calibration took less than 30 seconds and it was very easy hooking up my Panasonic UHD Blu Ray Player to the HDMI in port and I've had no issues with playback via my Samsung 4K TV eArc port.

The sound is very immersive using the 'multibeam' I find It really brings a new dimension to TV watching.

Re dialogue, I'm very happy with it, the centre speaker delivers crisp sound, of course depending on the source but where I was constantly turning up the sound on my 'JBL 2.0' I'm finding I'm not having to do that at all to hear dialogue.

I watched a UHD Blu Ray 'Logan' last night and it was fantastic, I was hearing sounds from way out left and right and the bass is really deep and rumbling.

Virtual Atmos is a feature of the '5.0' I watched some scenes with it on and off, TBH I couldn't tell much difference, that could be down to the fact that it's more subtle than I thought I was expecting, having never heard Atmos before.

The 5.0 provides a large 3D Surround stage with the right source and I would definitely recommend it.
 
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First time posting, I thought I would give my impression of the new JBL 5.0 soundbar which I've had since last weekend.

I'm really happy with the Soundbar and it was very easy to set up, the calibration took less than 30 seconds and it was very easy hooking up my Panasonic UHD Blu Ray Player to the HDMI in port and I've had no issues with playback via my Samsung 4K TV eArc port.

The sound is very immersive using the 'multibeam' I find It really brings a new dimension to TV watching.

Re dialogue, I'm very happy with it, the centre speaker delivers crisp sound, of course depending on the source but where I was constantly turning up the sound on my 'JBL 2.0' I'm finding I'm not having to do that at all to hear dialogue.

I watched a UHD Blu Ray 'Logan' last night and it was fantastic, I was hearing sounds from way out left and right and the bass is really deep and rumbling.

Virtual Atmos is a feature of the '5.0' I watched some scenes with it on and off, TBH I couldn't tell much difference, that could be down to the fact that it's more subtle than I thought I was expecting, having never heard Atmos before.

The 5.0 provides a large 3D Surround stage with the right source and I would definitely recommend it.
That sounds very promising! I will report back once I've been able to try it. :)
 

GRS67

Active Member
At present it appears that the 5.0 is only available from JBL and Richer Sounds.

I ordered directly from JBL and it was delivered in just over a week.

They offer a 10% discount if you register with their website so I saved £35!

As you can see it sits perfectly in front of my Samsung 43" TV.
 

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