In the last comparison, I did I hoped to do this one – Sony HT-G700 vs Samsung HW-Q60T Which is better? I was very curious to see if the addition of a subwoofer with the Sony soundbar would make a difference in the final outcome. It did have an impact but not quite as much as I’d been expecting.
If you missed it, the previous review was titled – Sony HT-X8500 vs Samsung HW-Q60T Which is better? The outcome of that review favored the Samsung soundbar but it actually felt like a bit of a test against unequal systems. This comparison is the one I was thinking about in the closing of that comparison.
I’ve also had the opportunity to review the Samsung HW-Q60T before comparing it to the Sony HT-X8500 so I did come into this review with some real hands-on experience. That review compared to Samsung products – Samsung Q60T vs Samsung Q800T which is better? – and found that they were nearly equal in performance. Had it not been for the separate subwoofer, and the price difference, there would have been very little daylight between these two soundbar systems.
As was the case with my last review, there is still a bit of an imbalance in this review that gives Samsung a bit of an advantage. I am still testing these two soundbars using my Samsung Q-Symphony enabled TV. With that function enabled the HW-Q60T improves significantly and that improvement tilts the results in its favor. For balance though, I tested both soundbars without Q-Symphony enabled and my final verdict is based on this balanced approach.
Why do you need a soundbar?
The passage of time since the first soundbar hit the market leaves me continually surprised to still hear the same question about soundbars. Folks still expect that they won’t stand up well against surround sound stereo component systems. Maybe this question will never be fully put to bed, or maybe it’s just the stirring of purists that can’t let go of the traditional component stereo approach.
It may also be the stigma soundbars rightfully earned when they were first introduced. They were so clearly inferior that it was hard to imagine that they could ever compete in a crowded and very well-developed sound system marketplace. Plus, they were overpriced, making the comparison even starker.
Those soundbars and today’s soundbar systems are like night and day, at least at the mid to high end of this market. The sound they deliver rival some of the best component-based surround sound systems available, and this includes those from top brands like Harmon Kardon, Klipsch, and others. It shouldn’t come as a surprise either to see most of these top brands now offering soundbar systems that are competitive with their own component stereos.
|Sony HT-G700||Samsung HW Q60T|
|3.1 Channels||5.1 Channels|
|7” Subwoofer||8” Subwoofer|
|Wireless Subwoofer||Wireless Subwoofer|
|400w Output||360w Output|
|No WiFi Support||No WiFi Support|
|No playback||No playback|
|Dolby Digital, Dolby Digital Plus, Dolby True HD, Dolby Dual Mono, DTS, DTS HD High-Resolution Audio, DTS HD Master Audio, DTS ES, DTS 96/24, DTS: X, Dolby Atmos||Dolby Digital, DTS, DTS:X, ARC eARC|
|1 HDMI in||1 HDMI in|
|1 HDMI Out||1 HDMI Out|
|HDMI ARC||HDMI ARC|
|Optical digital I/O||Optical digital I/O|
|1 USB 2.0 port||1 USB 2.0 port|
|Bluetooth, SmartThings App Compatible||Bluetooth|
|Google Assistant Built-in||No Alexa or Google Assistant support|
|No Airplay or other streaming service support||No Airplay or other streaming service support|
There are two standouts in this side-by-side comparison that the specifications uncover. The first is that the Sony soundbar system has more power. The second is the HT-G700 includes Dolby Atmos support that is, unfortunately, missing from the HW-Q60T. However, the impact these two features have surprisingly little impact on the overall performance differences.
Pro of the Samsung Q60T vs Samsung Q800T:
Samsung HW Q60T Pros
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- Samsung soundbars, including the HW-Q60T, deliver a consistently wide and deep soundstage.
- The wireless subwoofer can be placed anywhere in the room as long as there is access to a power outlet.
- Dialog is crisp and clear, with dialog enhancements in the SmartThings App that make it even better.
- Stream music from any Bluetooth-compatible device, including smartphones.
- The USB port allows for easy updates to the firmware and adds the ability to plug a flash drive in for music playback.
- A single connection from the eARC connection on the bar to the matching connection on the TV allows you to fully control the bar from the TV and its remote.
- It is priced at the lower end of the market but performs more like those in the $500+ range of soundbars.
- With support for Q-Symphony, this soundbar stands up well against those that have Dolby Atmos support.
Samsung HW Q60T Cons
- While Q-Symphony comes close, Dolby Atmos is noticeably better so this soundbar comes up a bit short.
- It would also be nice to have streaming service support that helps eliminate the quality limitations of Bluetooth.
- It could use a touch more power, particularly at the bottom end of the sound spectrum.
- While infrequent, you will probably experience some Bluetooth dropouts with this subwoofer.
- While not bad, this soundbar isn’t at its best when it comes to music playback. It is a bit flat, and again, this is primarily at the low end of the frequency range.
Sony HT-G700 Pros
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- The HT-G700 supports Dolby Atmos, the latest decoding enhancement from Dolby Labs and it has been reasonably well implemented on this soundbar.
- Compared to the Sony HT-X8500, voices come through with much greater clarity.
- Streaming music from other devices is possible using Bluetooth.
- eARC is available so this soundbar connects to compatible TVs with a single wire and is then controlled from the TV remote.
- Like its predecessors, this soundbar does a balanced job with movie and music content.
Sony HT-G700 Cons
- While more powerful than the Samsung Q60T, the sound becomes noticeably compressed and distorted as the volume is turned up.
- While better at delivering impactful baselines, it’s still a bit flat.
- The construction of the subwoofer is inferior, with a particle board box and plastic trim.
Comparing Sizes – Sony HT-G700 vs Samsung HW Q60T
|Sony HT-G700||Samsung HW Q60T|
|Width||38.5 inches – 97.8 cm||38.7 inches – 98.2 cm|
|Height||2.4 inches – 6.2 cm||2.3 inches – 5.8 cm|
|Depth||4.3 inches – 11.0 cm||4.2 inches – 10.7 cm|
|Width||7.5 inches – 19 cm||7.9 inches – 20.1 cm|
|Height||15.2 inches – 38.5 cm||13.9 inches – 35.2 cm|
|Depth||15.8 inches – 40.2 cm||11.9 inches – 30.3 cm|
Both of these soundbars fit well below any TV that’s 40 to 60 inches wide. That covers a lot of territory so unless you’re working with a much smaller or larger screen, these should look good. Of the two, the Sony will look better, longer. The Q60T’s cloth covering collects dust that is nearly impossible to get rid of so it gets to looking a bit dingy.
You can find the Samsung HW-Q60T on Amazon for $221.21. It’s also available on eBay for $206.99. Both are very fair prices. This puts this soundbar at the lower end of the soundbar market and given the level of performance you’ll enjoy, that’s a very fair price.
The Sony HT-G700 is available on Amazon at $498. You can find it on eBay for $325 and on Walmart for $498.27. That’s a significant difference in pricing across these selling platforms and when compared to the price for the Samsung HW-Q60T.
This one may come down to budgets but before we get there, there are some noticeable performance differences.
The most noticeable difference relates to having Atmos included with the Sony HW-G700. They have definitely improved the way this has been built into the soundbar and it shows in the immersive quality of the movie-watching experience.
Q-Symphony does an admirable job by syncing the two built-in TV speakers and by doing that it does come closer to an Atmos experience. Of course, you have to be using a Q-Sympohy TV as well or your listening experience will come up a bit short.
Samsung does much better with base performance at all volume levels. The quality of the Sony subwoofer build and the compression at high volumes is a real disappointment on this count.
So each of these soundbars has a winning point and each has a losing point and at the end of the day, they both do a reasonably good job delivering an enjoyable listening experience. If the last factor is cost, in the comparison of the Sony HT-G700 vs Samsung HW-Q60T, budgets favor the HW-Q60T once again. However, that advantage is less pronounced if you don’t have a Q-Symphony compatible TV.
Do look at some alternatives as well. I have been looking through many reviews of the Bose Smart Soundbar 300 that stand up well against the Q60T and the HT-G700. It does cost a bit more and has no separate subwoofer but still, it seems to play well against these two.
You’ll find our comparisons of the JBL Bar 9.1 vs Sonos Arc and the Yamaha Yas-209 Vs Sony HT-G700, among others, that you should also take some time to read through. It will expand your range of choices and might just convince you to invest a bit more in your surround sound system.
While these two soundbars were fun to compare, they didn’t fully answer the questions I was left with when I was comparing the HW-Q60T to the HT-X8500. I was hoping for a clearer performance difference between these two since by appearance, they are more closely matched. I went into this thinking that the proper inclusion of Dolby Atmos would be the defining difference between these two. The fact that it didn’t leave me wondering about the impact implementation of this decoding technology has had and how often this falls short with other soundbars. It’s something I’ll be paying closer attention to in the future.
Still, in the end, and even at the higher price, I would opt for the Sony HT-G700 if you don’t have a Q-Symphony compatible TV. If you do then save the money and stay with the matching HW-Q60T. You will have a better overall listening experience with this pairing.