Polk crammed Dolby Atmos and a ton of features into this 15-inch soundbar

Polk crammed Dolby Atmos and a ton of features into this 15-inch soundbar

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How tiny tin a soundbar get portion inactive offering Dolby Atmos? According to Polk, the reply is 14.5 inches. That’s the width of the company’s caller $499 MagniFi Mini AX, which supports some Atmos and DTS:X. In summation to the very compact soundbar, Polk is besides including a wireless subwoofer for that price.

The Sonos Beam — which itself is what I’d see a small-ish soundbar — measures 25.63 inches wide. The MagniFi Mini AX manages to hack implicit 10 inches disconnected of that, and frankly its dimensions and top-panel controls marque it look much similar a Bluetooth talker than location theatre gear. On the beforehand is an OLED ticker for relaying cardinal accusation similar dependable adjustments.

Most soundbars dwarf an iPhone successful size, but not this one. Image: Polk
An OLED show connected beforehand volition amusement cardinal info. Image: Polk

But Polk has included a ton of functionality successful this tiny thing. Aside from its eARC HDMI and optical inputs, the MagniFi Mini AX supports audio streaming via Bluetooth, AirPlay 2, Chromecast, and Spotify Connect. There’s an aux input, and the strategy is adjacent Roku TV Ready. This means you tin set dependable settings close from the autochthonal menus of a Roku TV. Polk truly covered each the bases here.

But by now, you mightiness beryllium wondering however almighty a 14.5-inch soundbar tin perchance be. The MagniFi Mini AX includes 5 talker drivers — but nary of them are up-firing. So similar Sonos does with the second-generation Beam, Polk is virtualizing those Dolby Atmos tallness situation dependable effects. You tin optionally adhd successful the company’s SR2 rear situation speakers for an other $170.

The downward-firing subwoofer kinda looks similar a insubstantial shredder, but astatine slightest it comes successful the box. Image: Polk

Polk claims the MagniFi Mini AX tin nutrient “quality that you’d expect to wage 2 oregon 3 times arsenic overmuch for.” The company’s VoiceAdjust diagnostic optimizes dependable clarity done the halfway transmission and keeps each dialog casual to understand. There’s besides a 3D audio mode that “transforms stereo audio to 360-degree situation sound.” That past instrumentality isn’t peculiarly caller and usually has mixed results, but it’s different instrumentality successful this soundbar’s ample container of them. Polk besides lets you dial backmost the bass oregon alteration nighttime mode to chopped down connected rumble if you’re watching thing precocious astatine night.

Do I expect an ultra-compact soundbar’s audio to stroke maine away? Not entirely. This full Dolby Atmos happening keeps getting much and much diluted arsenic laptop makers and different tech companies propulsion the Atmos badge connected products that often dependable wholly good but seldom present immoderate other immersion. Still, I’m decidedly funny astir the MagniFi Mini AX’s performance, and Polk has surely stuffed it afloat of features (and thrown a subwoofer into the mix) each for a tenable $499.