Published on February 7th, 2024 | by James Wright
Bose Smart Ultra Soundbar Review
Summary: The Bose Smart Ultra Soundbar is the only external audio device you need for your home entertainment - perfect and flawless audio!
The Bose Smart Ultra Soundbar is a dedicated audio solution to maximise the sound produced from a variety of entertainment devices such as your TV, PlayStation 5 or Smartphone for example, in order to produce a more immersive experience. Courtesy of its 5.1.2-channel with nine drivers, two upward firing speakers plus Dolby Atmos and TrueSpace, this allows you to hear clear audio in all directions. Movie lovers will appreciate the AI Dialogue Mode which balances voice and surround sound for clear voice, even when the action booms. Speaking of voice, it comes with our favourite voice assistant built-in, Alexa which is fantastic for swapping between devices connected to the Bose Smart Ultra Soundbar, including turning off your TV and other smart assistant features.
In Australia, the Bose Smart Ultra Soundbar retails for $1499.95AUD (Feb 2024) and is available in two colours, black and arctic white (reviewed) in order to ensure a good match for your home or office. The Bose Smart Ultra Soundbar measures at 5.8cm (height), 104.5cm (length) and 10.7 (depth) with a weight of 5.8kg. While it is a long device, it actually looks quite stylish with its metal grille and glass that can either blend or stand out with your placement of this slim soundbar. While it comes with a remote control, there are physical action buttons on the soundbar for Alexa plus microphone on/off. You can also pair the Bose Smart Ultra Soundbar wirelessly with the Bose Bass Module 700 or Bose Surround Speakers 700 for an even more immersive audio adventure.
In terms of connectivity, the Bose Smart Ultra Soundbar supports a plethora of different connections that include digital optical or HDMI eARC connections which is fantastic if your TV has several devices connected to. For wireless connectivity, you can access Bluetooth 5.0 (including AAC and SBC codecs) and WI-Fi. Additionally you can also use Apple AirPlay 2, Spotify Connect and Chromecast. On the rear of the soundbar are the physical ports that include the aforementioned HDMI eARC, Digital Optical plus Ethernet and USB-C (for servicing). There are also four 3.55mm inputs for connecting the Bose bass module, an IR blaster, the ADAPTiQ calibration headset and also a data port.
- Bose Smart Ultra Soundbar
- HDMI eARC cable
- Optical cable
- ADAPTiQ headset
- Power cord
- Remote control (battery included)
- Quick start guide
While the soundbar is plug and play that allows you to get the audio device up and running in no time – in order to maximise the capabilities, you do need to install the Bose Music app as it allows you to fine-tune it to your home and Wi-Fi network. This also includes linking it to your Alexa account and several audio tweaks such as volume, adjusting channels or bass. The other part of the install is to use the included ADAPTiQ headset that calibrates this technology to your room for the optimal audio. This is via the app which also links to your music streaming services.
When you are wearing the ADAPTiQ headset, the soundbar performs the calibration a handful of times that requires you to sit in the main positions where you will be using the device (e.g. in front of your TV for gaming or watching films). Once you have gone through the ADAPTiQ calibration process (e.g. connected the headset to the soundbar, completed its configuration and optimisation), you only need to re-engage with this setup if you move the soundbar or perhaps change the “seating” configuration in your lounge room for example. That’s it and you’re up and running in time, so it was time to test the Bose Smart Ultra Soundbar.
Our first test were movies – Films such as Dune (2021), Super Mario Bros (2023), Oppenheimer (2023) and John Wick 4 (2023) sounded phenomenal with the Bose Smart Ultra Soundbar successfully creating this immersive audio experience, creating this virtual surround sound atmosphere. The gun battles in John Wick 4 could not be faulted and really drew you into the choreography of these over the top fight scenes. Another highlight was Taylor Swift The Eras Tour which produced extremely clear audio and music that with the volume loud, a true concert-like experience. Also complementing films were streaming series such as Lock Season (2023) and The Witcher (2023) which mirrored the audio quality of the aforementioned films. Further, rich and deep levels of audio.
And music? Another win from Bose! Taylor Swift’s Cruel Summer, Ariana Grande’s Yes, And?, Dua Lipa’s Houdini plus Olivia Rodrigo’s Vampire again produced excellent clear audio levels. It’s amazing how much elements you miss out when listening to music on other audio peripherals. On the flipside, heavy metal from Ville Valo (Neon Noir) was banging music and equally soundtracks such as Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back and The Batman were immersive as every instrument could be hear that just resonated through your body when the Smart Ultra Soundbar was loud.
The only thing it lacked a little was bass but nonetheless, it still delivers. What about games on the PlayStation 5? Again, this soundbar from Bose cannot be faulted and games such as Assassin’s Creed Mirage, Suicide Squad: Kill the Justice League or Call of Duty: Modern Warfare III produced that big blockbuster gaming feel that allowed for a more immersive experience as you saved the world. A special mention should be made about the two upward firing speakers that somehow pushes sound above you – definitely a wow moment!
The Bose Smart Ultra Soundbar is a premium soundbar and if you’re looking to take your entertainment experience to a whole new level, then you’re in luck because this device is indeed the soundbar you’re looking for. For more information, please visit https://www.bose.com.au/en_au/products/speakers/home_theater/bose-smart-soundbar-ultra.html#v=SUSB-SOUNDBAR-BLK-240V-AUNZ