(Pocket-lint) – The Polk Signa S3 is an inexpensive providing from an organization that is actually made a reputation for itself within the soundbar market. This bar’s 2.1-channel system sports activities a low-profile cupboard in order to not block your TV display, contains high-quality drivers, plus a beefy wi-fi subwoofer with loads of low-end kick.

Options are restricted to assist maintain the value down, however you continue to get HDMI-ARC, Polk’s Voice Alter expertise, Bluetooth, Chromecast, and the power to work with Google Assistant. Consequently, the Signa S3 could be the perfect resolution for enhancing the sound in your new big-panel magnificence – with out breaking the financial institution.

Maintaining a low-profile 

  • Soundbar: 898 x 56 x 83mm
  • Subw: 171 x 311 x 343mm
  • Obtainable in black

The Polk Signa S3 retains issues easy with an unassuming and low-profile cupboard that is designed to not block your TV’s display or IR sensor. The chassis itself is pretty properly made, contemplating the value, and it is completed in black with a cloth grille throughout the entrance and high.

The soundbar lacks a correct show, as a substitute utilizing a row of 4 LEDs to supply standing data like supply, quantity and sound modes. However good luck making an attempt to recollect the completely different mixtures of lights and colors with out resorting to the handbook.

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The Signa S3 is vast sufficient to enhance TVs with display sizes of 55- to 65-inches, and you’ll select between stand- or wall-mounting the soundbar. When you determine on the latter, there are holes on the rear. Polk additionally supplies wall mount spacers, together with optical and HDMI cables.

The included wi-fi subwoofer can also be well-made, and makes use of the identical styling because the soundbar, with a black end and material on the entrance. The sub is front-firing, with 80W of amplification to energy its driver and a forward-facing bass port for added depth.

Adjusting the voices

  • 2.1-channel configuration
  • 2x 40W; 1x 80W
  • Dolby Digital 5.1
  • Voice Alter

The Polk Signa S3 targets a aggressive value, and so as to hit it the options have been stripped again. What you do get is a pair of respectable audio system, every composed of a 1-inch tweeter plus 1.25- x 4.4-inch mid-range driver, and powered by 40W of grunt. There is no centre speaker for dialogue, however throw within the sub with its 80W of low-end energy, and you’ve got a strong system.

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The Signa S3 is proscribed to 2.1 channels, however in a position to decode 5.1-channel Dolby Digital. It additionally contains Polk’s patented Voice Alter expertise, permitting you to select from three distinct ranges to breed clear, crisp dialogue and by no means miss a single phrase of your favorite film or TV present. There are additionally three self-explanatory sound modes: Film, Music, and Night time.

Connections and controls

  • HDMI output with ARC
  • Optical digital enter; Aux enter
  • Bluetooth; Chromecast
  • Works with Google Assistant

The Polk Signa S3 homes its connections in a recessed space on the rear, and admittedly there aren’t many. You get an HDMI port with ARC (audio return channel to push audio with no need anything), an optical digital enter, and an auxiliary enter. That is it for the bodily choices, however there’s additionally Bluetooth and Chromecast.

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The final two means that you can wirelessly stream music out of your favorite apps together with Google Play Music, YouTube Music, Amazon Music HD, Spotify, Tidal, Deezer, Qobuz, TuneIn Web Radio and extra, in addition to entry your personal music assortment over Wi-Fi.

There are some fundamental touch-sensitive controls on the soundbar itself, which let you energy the system on and off, cycle by way of the inputs (ARC, optical, AUX, Bluetooth), pair a Bluetooth machine, and alter the quantity up and down.

The included distant is small nevertheless it will get the job achieved. All the required controls are current and proper, with the buttons sensibly laid out. The distant additionally works with main TV producers’ remotes to regulate quantity in addition to most CEC-enabled TVs.

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When you’ve got a Google Dwelling speaker, you should use your voice and Google Assistant to regulate music playback, pause or alter the quantity. You may as well use the Google Dwelling app to regulate the Signa S3 or group with different Chromecast-enabled audio system to play music all through your property.

Punchy and musical

The Polk Signa S3 could be a comparatively easy soundbar by way of its structure, however crucially it is properly put collectively. The corporate is aware of the right way to make a speaker, and in consequence the 2 channels on the Signa S3 are clear, properly outlined and detailed. The width of the soundbar itself additionally ensures spectacular stereo separation and imaging, which is good for music and films.

Polk

There is a pleasing sense of width to the entrance soundstage, making this soundbar an important selection for anybody trying to increase the audio on their new big-screen TV. This sense of scale is enhanced by the devoted subwoofer, which provides a strong basis of bass. Polk’s speaker expertise comes into play right here as properly, with an efficient crossover making certain the sub isn’t overpowering.

The upshot is that the Signa S3 sounds wonderful with music, permitting you to take full benefit of all of the Bluetooth and Chromecast capabilities. Listening to Do You Realise by The Flaming Lips, you may instantly pick the assorted sound results and eccentric instrumentation. The supply offers this surprisingly upbeat track about dying loads of drive and power.

Polk

This sense of musicality carries over to watching TV – music and sound results are delivered with precision as they’re unfold throughout the entrance of the room. The Signa S3 overcomes its lack of a centre speaker very successfully, delivering dialogue with readability and focus. Consequently Sean Pertwee’s dulcet tones come throughout clearly in Masterchef: The Professionals.

The mixture of the soundbar’s width, the subwoofer’s depth and a few respectable amplification produces a supply that has scale and energy. This enables the Signa S3 to deal with pretty giant rooms, and go loud with out distorting or shedding its cohesion. The second season of His Darkish Supplies is dealt with with talent, and there is some punchy bass that offers the audio larger kick.

Polk

Relating to motion pictures the efficiency is equally dynamic, though the decoding is proscribed to lossy Dolby Digital. Nonetheless, the ensuing supply is definitely highly effective sufficient to deal with in the present day’s blockbuster soundtracks, with a bass-heavy film like Aquaman sounding suitably epic. The music, results and dialogue are all delivered with the ability of a tsunami.

It needs to be pressured that with regards to the Signa S3’s sonic prowess, expectations must be managed. There is no sense of encompass envelopment for a begin, with the soundstage targeted on the entrance of the room, however the supply remains to be a serious step-up from any TV’s built-in audio system. Finally the Signa S3 is a cracking all-rounder that produces spectacular bang on your buck.

Verdict

The Polk Signa S3 is one other cracking soundbar from the well-known speaker producer, successfully utilising its 2.1-channel structure to provide a efficiency that is each musical and punchy. This spectacular all-rounder provides actual width to the entrance soundstage, which is ideal for larger-sized TVs, and the well-integrated subwoofer delivers a lovely bassy thump.

The unassuming and low-profile design ensures this soundbar will not block your display or draw undue consideration to itself, and the pricing is very aggressive. Naturally this ends in a reasonably restricted set of options, however all of the vital stuff is current, together with HDMI-ARC, Voice Alter, Bluetooth, Chromecast and the power to work with Google Assistant.

Additionally contemplate

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Sonos Beam

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An ideal various, costing about the identical, and proving helpful for these already invested within the Sonos ecosystem. It is a good soundbar that is straightforward setup, works with Alexa and Google, has HDMI-ARC, and helps AirPlay 2. There is no separate subwoofer, so the bass is not as deep because the Polk, however the Beam delivers an thrilling and expansive soundstage.

Yamaha

Yamaha YAS-209

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A similarly-specified 2.1-channel soundbar and wi-fi subwoofer. It prices a bit greater than the Signa S3, however provides an HDMI enter, built-in Amazon Alexa and help for DTS Digital:X. In most different respects it is very related with an honest entrance soundstage, wonderful readability, loads of bass and an brisk supply.

Writing by Steve Withers. Modifying by Mike Lowe.

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