Home theatres are definitely a worthy investment if you have the space and the money for it. But, in case you’re looking for something more compact but just as powerful, your best bet might be a sound bar. While sound bars have not yet caught up in India, with most people opting for multi-channel speaker set-ups, companies have already started introducing products for consumers to warm up to. LG, for example, recently launched its SoundPlate LAP340W which found its place on our desk for a while.

Build The photos of the SoundPlate we had seen seemed misleading when we pulled out a pretty massive-looking sound bar from the covers. In the pics, it looks like a bar you can possibly carry in one hand. The real life version was much bigger at 28-inches across. Despite the width, the LG SoundPlate looks sleek. The absence of any buttons or controllers on the body gives it a minimalist appearance and it will look subtle yet classy in any room, under any TV. All the connectors on the SoundPlate are located at the rear. There’s a single power indicator which lights up when you switch the unit on, this also flashes when you’re trying to pair it with another device via Bluetooth.

Performance The LG SoundPlate is supposed to emulate a 4.1 multi-channel setup. The speakers house high-end neodymium magnets along with twin built-in subwoofers for bass and rounding this off is 120 watts of total power. We started off the SoundPlate experience with some music - switching from some hip-hop by Iggy Azalea and M.I.A to Arctic Monkey’s latest indie rock album AM and some mellow Bollywood numbers. On almost all the tracks we tried out, the volume levels could rise reasonably high without any distortion and the tones were reproduced accurately. While watching a movie, you have the option to activate a dedicated surround sound mode to make the most of the sound effects. The one consistent letdown though was the lack of an impressive thump. With bass heavy tracks such as Crying Lightning by Arctic Monkeys, we could barely gauge the effect. If you’re big on action movies or gaming or just bass-heavy music, this could be a definite letdown.

What works for the LG SoundPlate is the fact that it could go with any decor and any flat-panel telly you might already have blown lots of money on. The SoundPlate is supposed to sit below the TV - not next to or in front of it. Hence, it’s designed to support almost any telly that weighs up to 37 kilograms or so. Thankfully, LG packs in an optical digital connector so all you need to do to set it up is just plug that in to your TV. However, if you want an HDMI connection you will have to buy one yourself. The product is a good buy for someone who might not be getting decent volume levels and acoustics from a TV set. The SoundPlate is a decent accessory in a scenario like that, if you can afford it.


Love – Sleek build, subtle design, decent audio quality

Hate – Limited connectors, lacks bass