Vizio M-Series Elevate Review: Affordable Atmos Soundbar

Most individuals are in search of certainly one of two issues in a soundbar: essentially the most reasonably priced possibility or the best-sounding one. While it’s simple to search out merchandise that match a kind of standards, Vizio’s M-Series Elevate tries to fulfill each.

In phrases of value, options, and high quality, this $700 soundbar system nestles within the hole between the corporate’s $500 M-Series and its $1,000 Elevate. Like the original Elevate we reviewed in 2021, the brand new M-Series Elevate makes use of rotating, ceiling-firing drivers for the Dolby Atmos peak channels. However, the brand new bar opts for a wired setup and ditches additional options like Wi-Fi to chop prices. 

This “best of both worlds” strategy may have simply mired the M-Series Elevate in a no man’s land of compromises, but it surely manages to be a kind of uncommon Goldilocks choices that delivers great-sounding 5.1.2 Dolby Atmos in a comparatively cheap package deal. 

Out of the Box 

One of the primary reasons to choose a soundbar over an entire speaker configuration is the benefit of setup, and the M-Series Elevate completely nails it. It makes use of a largely wired setup (by which every speaker is bodily wired to the subwoofer, slightly than simply to an influence outlet), which can disappoint some customers, however the course of is remarkably simple.

The soundbar connects to your TV by way of an HDMI ARC/eARC port, and you may join an exterior gadget like a streaming field or online game console by way of an extra HDMI enter. You can even hook the soundbar as much as your TV or different gadgets by way of USB or digital optical audio cables, that are included. 

The two encompass audio system hyperlink as much as the subwoofer by way of included 3.5-mm cables and an influence cable. The solely wi-fi part within the core setup is the subwoofer, which syncs to the soundbar routinely if you flip it on; there’s no pairing step to cope with, and its wi-fi nature means no ugly cable operating by way of the center of your room. Because the surrounds connect with the subwoofer, it is higher to place it within the center or rear of your room.

Optionally, you possibly can join an Echo Dot speaker to the soundbar to allow voice controls, and you may pair it with a smartphone or different Bluetooth gadget to stream music to the M-Series Elevate.

Aesthetically, the M-Series Elevate is delicate and can simply slot in with most individuals’s decor. The soundbar is barely rounded and lined in a easy charcoal-gray material, and the encompass audio system and subwoofer function the identical modern design. Very little concerning the setup stands out—although the encompass audio system are oriented horizontally and can fairly actually stand out from the wall just a few inches if mounted. That stated, they’re sufficiently small to suit on most cabinets.

The solely standout visible function is the tiny audio system that come out at each ends of the soundbar in Dolby Atmos mode. These tiny drivers rotate upward to behave as ceiling-facing peak channels. Customizable coloured LEDs contained in the audio system make the Atmos Mode much more apparent, however you possibly can flip off the lighting if it’s not your model. It’s price noting that this function provides a smidge to the soundbar’s footprint—one thing to bear in mind when you’ve got restricted area.

Sound Design

Photograph: Vizio

The bodily setup is straightforward, however dialing within the M-Series Elevate’s settings could be tedious, relying in your wishes. To Vizio’s credit score, the bar is full of choices, and I recognize the granular management you’ve gotten over each side of the listening expertise. The drawback is definitely simply navigating all these menus.

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