Image Credit: Polk Audio
American manufacturer of home and automobile audio products Polk Audio’s new React speaker is an affordable home theater soundbar.
The new Polk Audio React soundbar looks like a typical soundbar with a 3rd generation Echo Dot screwed in place. Polk Audio claims the speaker is the “most advanced Alexa-enabled soundbar”, with four far-field microphones for voice pickup from across the room, even when loud audio is playing.
Alexa on the soundbar provides all the usual smart assistant functionality, such as music streaming from various services, grouping multiple Alexa devices for multi-room sound, free calls in supported countries, the intercom feature to drop-in on other Alexa-enabled devices, as well as TV specific features such as controlling the volume, setting levels and adjusting sound modes with your voice to optimize the soundbar to what you’re listening to. Preset modes can also be switched at the press of a button on the remote. Continuing with smart features, Polk Voice Adjust technology can boost vocal levels for clear, easy-to-understand dialogue.
With support for Dolby and DTS, React produces big, detailed, room-filling 5.1 virual surround sound without the need for additional speakers placed behind you. Understandably at the price, there’s no sign of Dolby Atmos support here, as there is on JBL’s new Bar 5.0 MultiBeam. Despite this, the soundbar should give a significant upgrade on your current TV’s built-in speakers without breaking the bank. Interally, sound comes from two 96mm x 69mm mid-range drivers, two 25mm tweeters and two 110mm passive radiators. The speakers are packed into a slim, low-profile design, standing only 2.2-inches tall.
Setup is super simple in the Alexa app. Polk Audio say the soundbar works with almost all TVs and remote controls. Beyond WiFi for Alexa, connection to React is via HDMI, optical, Bluetooth and USB-A.
If you fancy getting even more from the soundbar, you can purchase Polk Audio’s SR2 wireless rear speakers for $199 and/or the companies $199 7-inch React Sub, for a true 5.1 surround sound experience.
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