Soundbar VS Bookshelf Speakers – Comparison

Here in this guide article I’m going to compare soundbar vs. bookshelf speakers.

Sound plays an essential role in our lives. Sadly, the default speakers of TVs, monitors, and LEDs don’t care much about the listening Experience.

So, on the way to power up music. The two choices that fall down for many people are soundbars and bookshelf speakers.

On the surface, both are great for filling a room up with a clear, vibrant bass sound. Still, some differences are apparent, which I’m here to uncover so you can totally rely upon your purchase.

I’ll put everything upfront which you need to know.

Soundbar VS Bookshelf Speakers

A few years back, I had been tapped into a similar situation. I was looking around to come up with a better choice.

My primary preference was listening to music quite often and watching Netflix shows with better sound effects. Not to mention, I was very strict about the budget spending option, which was below $150.

After spending a lot of time on options, I got to know a few apparent differences.

Bookshelf speakers are recommended for listening to music at a high volume. Preferably, if you’re keen on enjoying songs, bookshelf speakers can do wonders then.

Also, they’re very portable, small in size that can be placed over any place in a room. However, I would say you should buy an additional stand that will make it look cool.

So soundbars are highly recommended for people belonging to Netflix’s fan base- or Amazon’s prime. Soundbars have modern sound effects. Basically, while watching movies they can control bass not to take over a character’s voice- to make it clear to hear.


Soundbars are famous for their minimalist designs, slim shapes that make it easier to hook them up on a horizontal wall. Plus, most people use it for their stylish design as well.

Many popular soundbars come with built-in speakers that simulate the Dolby Atmos experience through ceiling reflections, which adds some additional taste in watching movies as sitting in a theater.

Apart from built-in speakers, you can find soundbars with external speakers too that can be placed at different places in a room. However, the possibilities with a soundbar to have great quality sound is sky-high- Where money is the key.

Check Best Soundbars on Amazon

Bookshelf Speakers

Like every product, come up with something unique in it. And this goes the same for Bookshelf speakers as they’re basically designed to place anywhere in a room to enjoy music. Unlike soundbars, they’re not needed to place below a TV.

The speakers are designed to achieve the maximum sound in small and medium spaces.

With that said, if you don’t find interest in watching Netflix shows all the time, that too in a theater-like sound. Rather interested in music, at that moment, the choice is clear. Go with bookshelf speakers, and you will find your all needs fulfilled.

Check bookshelf speakers on Amazon

Soundbar VS bookshelf Speakers – Comparison

For Music

If you are thinking of which one can produce maximum sound and bass just for music?

Then, bookshelf soundbars are what you should consider. Not only is their sound volume higher at default, but they also are upgradeable- if you know how to do that.

Whereas, soundbars are not basically pleasing to people who love to keep the music going on- Unless you choose an expensive one that comes with separate sub speakers. Definitely, you will have to pay extra for that.

Not to mention, soundbars are not easily upgradeable, so that’s something you should keep in mind.

For TV

Both produce a sound that is packed with bass- immersive sound quality. If getting superior sound from movies is your primary objective, soundbars and bookshelf speakers perform differently.

Soundbars usually come up with at least one channel-centric position, which is why it produces nice and clear sound- dialogue clarity.

This is not the case with speakers. In bookshelf speakers, background music often goes too high to listen to the dialogue.


The size of both is vital to understand as they differ both in look as well as in the process of setting them up.

Soundbars are flat, horizontally wider, and in the back, they have hooks that are for mounting them. It’s always essential to be mounted near a LED- a few inches below.

Bookshelf soundbars come up with a compact design and shape- look like a box. Opposed to soundbars, they can be positioned at any corner of the room as opposed to soundbars, but being close to the monitor can enhance the audio experience.

Sound Quality

On the surface, so far, there is nothing to complain about their sound quality only, if you know how to use them at their best.

When put side by side with bookshelf speakers, the soundbar stands out while comparing dialogue clarity features. For this purpose, they have built-in channels that automatically balance background music.

Even though bookshelf speakers are good, just because it’s aimed at bass, many people don’t like listening to podcasts as they require amplification- which they lack.

Connectivity Options

Both units come up with multiple connectivity ports, HDMI, CEC, and wireless connectivity, including Bluetooth and wifi.

However, setting up a soundbar is more convenient than a bookshelf speaker because mostly the HDMI ports do the trick.


Soundbars have multiple channel options to opt for. Which includes 2;1, 5;1, even nowadays you can find a soundbar with a 7:1 channel. They’re all geared toward making a room into an entertainment center, a concept most people are enthralled by.

This isn’t how bookshelf speakers are rated. Instead, they are measured by how loud and strong the bass is. In particular, gamers are drawn to.


Regardless of the fact, there are cheap options available for both products. Still, if you dig down to look for quality and features, you can get soundbars and shelf book speakers.

You will find speakers will cost you more money than soundbars, even with the same features.

Which is Better? – Conclusion

As I had used both. To be honest, they impressed me with what they offer under the hood.

For tv, soundbars are a better choice than bookshelf speakers. Not only are they cheap,, but also have advantages such as easy to set up high-quality sound, and essentially 3D vibrant sound that feels like sitting in a theater.

As far as I can tell, I was able to listen to the podcast clearly with a soundbar that was hard for bookshelf speakers.

Although I have one speaker in my place that I used to play music, I’ve connected it to my smart mobile, and with my PC as a bookshelf speaker really produces better sound effects while gaming than a soundbar.