Samsung brings wireless Dolby Atmos to its 2022 soundbars

Mike Wheatley

Samsung Electronics has embraced Dolby Atmos surround sound with its latest soundbars, which will be able to receive wireless multichannel audio from most of its 2022 TVs.


So anyone who buys one of Samsung’s more affordable QN80B Neo QLED TVs, or a superior model, will be able to enjoy immersive Dolby Atmos sound without needing to use an HDMI cable to connect their soundbar.

What’s more, from Samsung’s announcement there’s no need to purchase an accessory to enjoy this capability, as is necessary with LG Electronics's soundbars, for example.

Reports from FlatpanelsHD and Techhive claim Samsung’s flagship 2022 soundbar is the HW-Q990B, replacing last year’s HW-Q950A. Like its predecessor, it’s an 11.1.4 channel Dolby Atmos/DTS:X system with upward-firing and side-firing speakers in the main soundbar unit and also the separate surrounds. For 2022 however, there will be a revamped subwoofer.

Samsung is also launching a step-down model, the HW-Q930B, which is a 9.1.4 channel system, as its surrounds lose the side-firing drivers.

Samsung will also add more drivers to other, lower spec models in the Q soundbar range, so the replacement for last year’s Q900 will step up from a 7.1.2 channel system to 9.1.2 channels, courtesy of new surrounds with front-facing drivers. Meanwhile the Q800A replacement will upgrade from 3.1.2 to 5.1.2, thanks to the addition of side-firing drivers on the main soundbar.

There is an entirely new model in this year’s Q-Series soundbars that doesn’t replace any similar model from the previous year. The sleek-looking HW-S800B Dolby Atmos soundbar features nine drivers packed inside an ultra-slim chassis and boasts changeable covers available in black, white and wood. It also supports DTS:X and comes with a compact, separate subwoofer with passive radiator tech.

Samsung’s 2022 soundbars will all benefit from some updates to the Q-Symphony symbiotic technology that helps them and Samsung’s Neo QLED TVs work better together. Q-Symphony can now work automatically and will also incorporate all of the drivers built-into the TV as well, so they can be used in tandem. Also, Samsung said its soundbars will feature its Spacefit calibration software, so they can be set up and auto-update themselves on a daily basis without need for a Samsung-branded TV.

This week we also learned of Sony’s new 2022 soundbars, and the biggest thing with them is that the top two models in its lineup – the Sony HT-A7000 and the HT-A5000 – will come with a new feature called 360 Spatial Sound Mapping.

The technology delivers more realistic surround sound, Sony claims, making it possible to feel the sound emanating from every direction and distance.


“Using Sound Field Optimization, the soundbar uses built-in microphones to ingeniously measures the relative height and position of the soundbar and rear speakers,” Sony explained. “360 Spatial Sound Mapping technology then creates multiple phantom speakers by synthesizing sound waves based on positional information. Thanks to this technology, Sony's wide spatial sound field fills every part of the living space, so everyone gets the same sound experience, wherever they are in the room.”

For the new technology to work, the soundbars must be used with separately sold SA-RS3S wireless rear speakers, or else the soon-to-launch SA-RS5 wireless rear speakers that will launch in the spring. The feature won’t work out of the box however, but rather be enabled via a firmware update that’s also planned for sometime in spring.