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The Beosound Theatre Atmos bar looks great but comes with a steep price tag

Scandinavian audio brand Bang & Olufsen has whipped the covers off its latest Dolby Atmos soundbar, and it is a striking effort that comes with a huge price tag.

We had thought the Sennheiser Ambeo Soundbar and Devialet Dione was expensive but clearly B&O have decided that’s not really expensive enough. Available in a range of premium finishes and customization options, Beosound Theatre’s pricing starts at £5,590 / $6,890 / €6,490.

Nevertheless, this is Bang & Olufsen, so we’re expecting a high-quality experience, and the company isn’t playing expectations down with the implication that the Beosound Theatre is “raising the bar” (in more ways than one)

The Beosound Theatre features twelve (12!) speaker drivers, including two custom-made long stroke 6.5” woofers, the set-up backed by 800 watts of amplification power that provides up to 112dB sound pressure level. As an all-in-one soundbar, the Beosound Theatre can be the centre of a 7.1.4 Dolby Atmos set-up, with support for up to 16 external loudspeakers with the bar functioning as a centre speaker.

Bang Olufsen Beosound Theatre product shot

The Theatre’s own centre channel takes on dialogue duties, with the tweeter mounted directly in front of the midrange, B&O say the alignment of these drivers “ensures a better sound distribution” ensuring everyone in a room gets a good performance.

Other speakers within the unit include a patent-pending combination of direct, side- and up-firing speakers, using the Beam Width and Beam Direction Control developed for the Beolab 90 speakers, with B&O claiming this means all loudspeaker drivers are working together for a spacious, enveloping performance

The soundbar is also modular, the TV screen can be swapped out (it’s optimised for specific 55-, 65- and 77-inch LG screens) as can the cover of the soundbar. The aluminium “wings” are extendable, growing in size if you decide to jump to a bigger screen, maintaining a consistent visual appearance. There’s an interface bracket that connects the bar to the stand/TV screen that hides any clutter from cables.

And then there’s the look of the thing. Inspired by sailboats, the keel-like design look as if it appears to be resting on an aluminium blade, giving the impression of the bar floating in the air.

The B&O Beosound Theatre will come in a range of premium finishes and customization options, with prices for the fabric cover version starting at £5,590 / $6,890 / €6,490 and £6,390 / $7,990 / €7,490 for the wood cover alternative.

A soundbar for the few, not the many

Bang & Olufsen is boutique company and the Beosound Theatre is a flex of its extravagant design muscle, appealing to those for whom money is no object.

And while you can’t really blame B&O for not reading the current moment where cost of living is on everyone’s tongues (the Theatre has been in development for a while), I can’t help but feel slightly disappointed in the direction B&O has gone in.

Where audio brands are looking at the compact, more affordable Atmos market, that’s not what B&O is interested in. But it would have been intriguing to see what B&O’s interpretation of that design would have been. Instead, the Beosound Theatre looks innovative but its appeal feels limited.

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