The Samsung 2020 Q-series soundbars are here and include Dolby Atmos 9.1.4, 7.1.2, 3.1.2 and Dolby Digital Plus 5.1 soundbars.
Samsung 2020 Q-series soundbars are the pinnacle of Samsung Audio Lab California tuning and design. While they are best for Samsung TVs, their sound quality makes them a great addition to any brand of premium TV.
The Samsung 2020 Q-series soundbars (Q60T/70T/800T/900T/950T) have one main difference when paired to a compatible Samsung Q-series TV (Q80T and above) – Q-Symphony. It uses the TV’s top and side speakers to enhance the Dolby Atmos sound stage.
Q-Symphony does not increase the number of Dolby channels but allows the soundbar to phase sounds and objects across more speakers for a more holistic Dolby experience.
Samsung 2020 Q-series soundbars support (Website here)
Dolby Atmos, Dolby Digital Plus, Dolby True HD (except Q60T is Dolby 5.1 only)
DTS:X and its lesser variants (DTS:X is an Atmos-like surround sound with object steering)
PCM mono, 2.0 stereo and multi-channel
Surround Sound (faux upscale)
Adaptive Sound to optimise to content type – dialogue, sports, news, movie
Game Mode Pro – highly directional audio
Premium textile covering by Kvadrat (Q950/900T)
Separate Wireless Sub-woofer
Where applicable separate rear speakers or acoustic beam to reflect rear channels off ceilings or walls
Most have Alexa voice assistant (no Google Assistant/Chromecast or AirPlay2)
Tap and play with Samsung smartphones (via Samsung SmartThings app and cloud)
SmartThings compatibility (not Q60T)
Wi-Fi AC 2.4Ghz (no Ethernet port)
BT SBC RX (Q900/950)
BT SBC TX/RX A2DP (800T and below support multi-connection)
Passthrough of 4K Dolby Vision and HDR10+ content
AAC, MP3, WAV, OGG, FLAC, ALAC, AIFF
HDMI 2.0 in
HDMI 2.0 eARC (Dolby and all sound formats) and Digital Audio In (PCM)
Not part of a multi-room sound system
60-day money-back guarantee
Samsung 2020 Q-series soundbars base specifications
Dolby 5.1 (Not Atmos)
7 30Wx4+20Wx2 +10W+160W (Sub)
Physical speaker boxes
same Acoustic beam for rear L+R
4 Rears are L+R and L+R up-firing
1232×69.5x 138 mm
Option rear speaker for 5.1.2
same for 7.1.2 (not 7.1.4)
Have 2 rear and up-firing speakers
SWA-9000S are $249 for the pair – these are for rear Left and Right and do not have up-firing speakers in them like the Q950T)
A note on Dolby Atmos and you may need to read this!
First, you must have Dolby Atmos content from Blu-ray or some streaming services. That is the same for DTS:X content.
Next, you must have HDMI 2.0 cables connecting all devices (information here). These are Premium High Speed (HDMI 2.0) or Ultra-High-speed (HDMI 2.1) although the Q-series 4K TVs and Soundbars only are 2.0.
The TV must pass through Dolby Vision/Atmos metadata via eARC to the soundbar (only late model TVs do this)
Dolby Atmos means a total of 128 channels routed to up to 64 speakers – it down-mixes to the available channels and speakers.
The terms overhead, up, up-firing and ceiling speakers are the same and refer to adding overhead sound, e.g. height
.1 is for a Sub-woofer which operates on a frequency cut-over).
5.1 (and 2/4)
7.1 (and 2/4)
9.1 (and 2/4)
1. Left front
2. Right front
3. Centre front
4. Left surround
5. Right surround
6. Left rear surround
7. Right rear surround
8. Left wide surround
9. Right wide surround
.2 Left front overhead
.2 Right front overhead
.4 Left rear overhead
.4 Right rear overhead
Confused – most are.
If a single soundbar is 5.1 (with a separate sub-woofer), it uses two front up-firing or side-firing front speakers (Samsung call this Acoustic Beam, and we call it psychoacoustic trickery) to bounce/reflect sound off the ceiling or wall and drop it somewhere behind the viewing position where you would normally have speakers 4 and 5 (in our table and #6 above in Dolby parlance) – left and right surround.
If a single soundbar is 5.1.2 (with a separate sub), it uses another two speakers to bounce (usually off the side walls) the .2 channels (#8 in Dolby image).
It is very hard to get 7.1. let alone 7.1.2 from a single soundbar. Samsung’s Q900T has no separate L+R rear speakers. But if the room has the right surfaces and dimensions, you can do it (not tested). But that is why when you add the optional SWA-9000 rear Left and Right surrounds it remains 7.1.2 (not 7.1.4). The speakers in the soundbar that were emulating the .2 then provide sound reinforcement.