Sony HT-X9000F Sound Bar 2020 Detailed Review
Even the most impressive HD/UHD televisions can have their performance undercut by mediocre sound. Televisions aren’t built to replace speakers, and the speakers installed on them by default are usually scarcely better than the cheapest tech on the market. In this article, you will get a detailed review of the Sony HT-X9000F Sound Bar.
About Sony HT-X9000F Sound Bar
Sony’s 2020 lineup of audio equipment includes two new soundbars, the HT-Z9F and the HT-X9000F. The HT-Z9F is extremely high-end sound equipment that verges on being audiophile quality gear.
Although Sony’s HT-X9000F isn’t quite as powerful, it does have a number of things in common with the HT-Z9F. Both offer support Dolby Atmos surround sound.
If you know anything about Dolby Atmos sound, then you know the true Atmos effect requires you to add more speakers than a 2.1 channel soundbar provides.
Fortunately, the HT-X9000F is ready for that as well. Should the day come that you wish to upgrade your sound system, Sony’s X9000F can be extended from digital surround sound to true surround sound with the addition of another set of speakers.
- SOUNDBAR & SUBWOOFER: Sony 2.1 channel soundbar system with wireless subwoofer for optimized audio
- VERTICAL SOUND ENGINE: Upscale audio to immersive surround with a max of 7.1.2ch with a single click
- MATCH YOUR ENTERTAINMENT: 5 unique sound modes for enhanced movies, music, gaming, news, and sports. Bluetooth version 4.2
- VOICE ENHANCEMENT: Isolates voices and amplifies them over the background noise for greater clarity
- 4K HDR QUALITY: Made for the latest home theatre formats to provide content with crystal clear audio
- eARC TECHNOLOGY: Relay full-resolution sound with immersive audio formats like Dolby Atmos and DTS:X
- BLUETOOTH STREAMING: Stream your favourite movies, shows, and music from your smartphone or tablet
- WIRELESSLY CONNECT: Connect via Bluetooth to send audio to the slim soundbar and sub from anywhere
- ONE-CABLE CONNECT: Send audio and control information from the TV using a single cable with HDMI ARC
- IN THE BOX: HT-X9000F soundbar and subwoofer system with remote control, batteries, and HDMI cable
Build & Design
The HT-X9000F was built to match the appearance of Sony’s high-end BRAVIA X900F TV. The result is a non-descript professional aesthetic that pairs nicely with essentially any large TV.
The soundbar itself uses a lengthy 36.6-inch body, standing just over 2.3-inches tall. That build provides a low centre of gravity that prevents the soundbar from being knocked over easily.
Most soundbars are built as 2.0 channel systems. After all, the entire purpose of a soundbar is to create speakers that don’t take up much space. But Sony’s HT-X9000F is a full 2.1 channel stereo system, which means it includes its own separate subwoofer.
Like most subwoofers, this one uses a 15 x 7.5 x 15-inch build that’s fairly bulky. But the vertical orientation of the device means it won’t be too difficult to neatly tuck away without losing much space. Additionally, it’s wall mountable and wireless, so it’s not difficult to avoid all of the most common hassles surrounding subwoofers.
Drawbacks to Consider
The X9000F doesn’t have the same level of versatility you’ll find on the higher end Z9F. You can’t create a multi-room wireless connection, and you can’t connect through Wi-Fi. Moreover, the X9000F is picky about its compatibility. While it’s possible to add Sony’s SS-CSC speakers, you can’t implement any other speakers within those audio channels. Once you buy a Sony soundbar, there’s a good chance you’ll be locked-in with Sony products.
Turning to the USB port, you should know that not all types of USB devices are supported. You have to consult Sony’s manual for a complete list, but the majority of unsupported devices are either very old or very obscure. As long as you’re not using any unusual devices, you shouldn’t end up running into any issues with the USB connection.
As far as extras go, the X9000F doesn’t include anything noteworthy. You get a remote, batteries to operate the remote, and one HDMI cable. That’s nothing to write home about, but at least you have everything you need to get started out of the gate.
Why Choose Sony HT-X9000F Sound Bar?
Among mid-ranged soundbars, Sony’s HT-X9000F is on the top of the heap. It supports many of the same advanced features you’ll find on Sony’s best equipment. The faux surround sound isn’t as sophisticated as what you’ll see on the best soundbars in the world, but it’s definitely enough to surpass anything you’ll see on a 2.0 channel system.
When you sign up for a soundbar, you’re making a compromise. You can’t achieve true surround sound, and bass tones tend to suffer. In exchange, you don’t have to store a shedload full of speakers in your living room. The X9000F gives you the best deal on that compromise. With its independent subwoofer, you won’t have to sacrifice booming bass, and you won’t have to endure a low-quality sound stage.
If you’re looking for high-quality sound in a compact form, then the X9000F is a great choice. Suffice to say, it can do far more than your television speakers will ever be able to do. The level of immersion it provides comes eerily close to a real cinematic experience.
Ultimately, the HT-X9000F is a 2.1 channel soundbar, and there’s only so much you can squeeze out of a 2.1 channel system. But with its ability to be upgraded to full surround sound, the X9000F is a great choice for anyone seeking compact speakers around this price point.