3 cheap soundbars that deliver awesome audio upgrades

A soundbar is one of the biggest TV upgrades you can make, but that doesn't mean you need to spend big money

Sonos Ray soundbar in white colorway
(Image credit: Sonos)

For most people, soundbars are a must-have TV upgrade. They deliver a much more punchy and powerful sound than the speakers in your TV, primarily because they don't have to be stuffed into a case that's so slim there's barely room for the tiniest tweeters – something that affects even the best TVs. Adding a soundbar means more immersive audio in movies, clearer dialogue in TV shows and more fun when you're playing games or music.

The best soundbars can be quite expensive, but that doesn't mean you need to spend a fortune to get a serious upgrade. Here are three that punch way above their price tags.

Sony HT-SF150 soundbar

(Image credit: Sony)

1. Sony HT-SF150

Sony sound for less than £100? That's what the HT-SF150 delivers, and while it can't match the power and punch of Sony's more expensive soundbars it's a slim and surprisingly loud upgrade for smaller TVs, and the best soundbar in this price bracket. With support for Dolby Atmos as well as Bluetooth, Chromecast and Airplay 2 streaming it's an excellent audio all-rounder.

Roku Streambar soundbar

(Image credit: Roku)

2. Roku Streambar

Fancy upgrading your Smart TV system as well as its sound? Roku's Streambar is a Roku streaming box and a soundbar combined, and it hasn't cut corners on either specialty. It sounds fantastic and much louder than you'd expect from such a small device, and it adds a world of streaming apps to any TV with an HDMI port. That's useful if, like many TVs, you don't have the full complement of streaming apps on the TV's own streaming hub.

Sonos Ray soundbar

(Image credit: Sonos)

3. Sonos Ray

If you're thinking of going down the Sonos route for home cinema, smart speakers and/or multi-room audio, you're probably aware that its bigger soundbars are a little on the pricey side. By Sonos standards the Sonos Ray is available at pocket money prices, and if you're looking to add a soundbar to your existing Sonos setup or take your first steps into Sonos sound then it's a brilliant buy. It's a pretty good option even if you aren't planning a full Sonos system, but the soundbars listed above are more affordable options.

Writer, musician and broadcaster Carrie Marshall has been covering technology since 1998 and is particularly interested in how tech can help us live our best lives. Her CV is a who’s who of magazines, newspapers, websites and radio programmes ranging from T3, Techradar and MacFormat to the BBC, Sunday Post and People’s Friend. Carrie has written thirteen books, ghost-wrote two more and co-wrote another seven books and a Radio 2 documentary series. When she’s not scribbling, she’s the singer in Glaswegian rock band HAVR (havrmusic.com (opens in new tab)).