Sennheiser Ambeo Soundbar vs Samsung HW-Q90R which is better

Sennheiser Ambeo Soundbar vs Samsung HW-Q90R which is better?

This Sennheiser Ambeo Soundbar vs Samsung HW-Q90R battle is something that I am very excited about. I have looked at the Sennheiser Ambeo Soundbar a fair bit lately. Putting it against other soundbars such as this Sennheiser Ambeo Soundbar vs Sonos Arc which is better? article I had a lot of fun with. Today though I am checking out the Samsung HW-Q90R which I have been waiting to do for a while now and this is one hell of a match up as we have two very premium products here going head to head.

The Price

The first step on our Sennheiser Ambeo Soundbar vs Samsung HW-Q90R fight to the finish is price. These are both very expensive soundbars and if you are interested in either of these you need to know right away that you are looking at over a grand for these! However, as I always say, expensive and overpriced are two very different things and either of these are overpriced.

Sennheiser Ambeo Soundbar:

People tend to freak out when I tell them that the Sennheiser Ambeo Soundbar had an RRP of $2,499,99 when it was first released! This thing is a premium in every sense of the word soundbar. From the Dolby Atmos to the way it is built. The intent by Sennheiser here is to bring theatre audio into your home. Now, you can find this for close to 2 grand at most stores that sell this so I would certainly shop around before you pay that 2500 bucks. You can look on eBay, but I have seen a couple of these pop up on there and then never go for less than the RRP so you might as well go through a proper store. This is more expensive than the Samsung HW-Q90R, but I have to be honest and say that I am not 100 percent sure I see that extra value.

Samsung HW-Q90R:

If you were to buy the Samsung WH-Q90R when it was first released you were looking at around 1500 to 1600 bucks which I think is a great price for a setup like this. These days, you can get it cheaper than that the best price I saw for the Samsung HW-Q90R was on Walmart of all places who had it listed for an incredible $899.99! that is a steal for something like this. Over at Amazon (as of me writing this), there are a couple of third party sellers with this for sale, the cheapest one being $1,249.99 which is more than a fair price. I did also have a look on eBay and there are not a ton of these on there right now, however, the few that are on there and are brand-new are going for 1100 to 1250 bucks which again is a great price for a piece of tech like this.  

The Verdict: 

I have to give this round to the Samsung HW-Q90R. I think that the Sennheiser Ambeo Soundbar is fantastic and very, very premium and I can see why some people think it is the greatest ever. However, with the HW-Q90R, you are getting a Dolby Atmos soundbar, but you also get the subwoofer and surround speakers all for a price lower than what the Ambeo is going for. I actually think that the HW-Q90R is one of the best deals you can get when it comes to a premium soundbar.

The Design

Next round in this Sennheiser Ambeo Soundbar vs Samsung HW-Q90R WWE style title fight is the design. Both of these look great and would look awesome in either a home theatre or your living room. These have a very different kind of style to them so I am pretty pumped to get deep into this and see which one I think looks the best.

Sennheiser Ambeo Soundbar:

Each time I have looked at the Sennheiser Ambeo Soundbar here on the site I have talked about how it is the largest soundbar (so far) that I have played around with. The dimensions of the soundbar are 49.8” x 6.73” x 5.31” and it is the over 6 inches of height that really make this stand out. It will really struggle to sit under any TV due to it being so high. As well as being large, this thing also comes in at 40 pounds so it is pretty damn heavy too. Sennheiser has clearly made this with it not being between the legs of a TV in mind. The thing is, once you crack open that Pandoras Box sized box that the Sennheiser Ambeo Soundbar comes in and you take it out, you notice right away just how much of a premium product this thing really is. It has a feel that is just indescribable and makes you realize right away why the price tag is what it is!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-1KDIBhuqNA

I really like this Sennheiser Ambeo Soundbar review – Is the most expensive soundbar worth it? video as it does a great job of showing off just how cool this thing looks. The Sennheiser Ambeo Soundbar has a very interesting design to it. When I first saw this, I thought it was the standard rectangular shape that the majority of soundbars have. However, at the sides, this is angled and it not only helps with the way it pushes the sound around the room. It also looks very cool as well and gives it some edge and personality which I really do like. While the whole soundbar has a very premium kind of feel, they have gone with a fabric grille to protect the speakers. Look, the fabric grille looks great and very stylish. Still, a fabric grille is not something I am a huge fan of. It can be a magnet for dust and if you have kids or pets, it can be easily damaged too. One design feature that I am a big fan of is the LCD that Sennheiser has put on here.

Before we get to the back of the soundbar, I want to talk about the top. You have your controls on here, but it is the way they have used both plastic and metal for the top that I think is very cool. It gives the soundbar an even more premium feel to it. Around the back, you have an HDMI arc port, but there are three other HDMI ports, an optical port, and an RCA port. Plus, there is an ethernet port and a USB port! This thing is stacked when it comes to connectivity options for you.

Samsung HW-Q90R:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1py_96L1tfM

The Samsung HW-Q90R is a really interesting and cool looking soundbar. Have a quick look at this BEST Dolby Atmos Soundbar? – Samsung HW-Q90R Review video which does a great job of showing off the soundbar, subwoofer, and satellite speakers. Coming in at 48.3” x 3.1” x 5.4” this is still pretty damn big, but not as big as the height is the main winner here as if you have a larger TV like the SAMSUNG 75-Inch Class QLED Q60A Series TV, it will not take up a ton of space underneath it like the Sennheiser Ambeo Soundbar does. The style of this soundbar is something I am a massive fan of. I like how the front and the sides are protected with a metal grille, it not only looks awesome, but it also ensures that the speakers are well protected. Plus it is very easy to clean and keep looking sharp too. It has the same style of grilled on the top too which is something I really do like.

Around the back of the Samsung HW-Q90R, we have your connectivity options. Before that I have to talk about the build quality of what is going on here, the back is made with a solid plastic and the opening for the ports is quite small which I like. You have an HDMI Arc and two other HDMI ports on the back of here. There is also an optical port on the back as well. Now, this does come with a set of satellite speakers and these are way more high quality than I thought they would be. These are protected with a metal grille and they look fantastic. They come in at 5.6” x 8.2” x 4.8” and that 8.2 inches of height were a tad bigger than I was expecting. These look awesome and have a very smart and stylish design. When you notice them, you can appreciate how cool they look. However, their design does also allow them to blend into the background too.

As the Samsung HW-Q90R comes with a subwoofer it is only natural that we take a closer look at what that has to offer. This is a good sized subwoofer coming in at 7.9” x 15.9” x 15.7”. The majority of the subwoofer is made from a high-quality wood. The speaker is on the side and rather than use the same kind of metal grille like the soundbar and the satellite speakers use, this is fabric. It is not horrible, but I always worry bout fabric getting damaged and dirty, it rings even more true for a subwoofer as most people have these sitting on the floor! Still, it looks cool and goes with the style of the rest of the package very well.

The Verdict: 

I think that the Sennheiser Ambeo Soundbar has a very elegant and cool kind of style to it that I am a big fan of. However, that fabric grille is not something I am a fan of. The Samsung HW-Q90R on the other hand has the exact kind of style that I want when it comes to a soundbar. It has a metal grille and just a very cool and sleek kind of style to it. Plus, the included subwoofer and satellite speakers go amazingly well with the soundbar to make a great package.

The Sound

Sound is 100 percent the main event of this Sennheiser Ambeo Soundbar vs Samsung HW-Q90R championship match! Both of these offer Dolby Atmos, but one is a full surround sound system and you do have to wonder if that is going to make a massive difference. I am very excited to get into this and spoiler alert, this was not as close as I thought it was going to be!

Sennheiser Ambeo Soundbar:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nYUgaHOZXhc

From what I have seen and this The Best Soundbar With Dolby Atmos – Sennheiser AMBEO Soundbar Review video is a prime example of that, people who have tested or who have the Sennheiser Ambeo Soundbar love it! This is a cinema style of soundbar and it is just amazing and as soon as I hooked this thing up, I was impressed by the audio quality. The first thing I have to talk about is Dolby Atmos, the Sennheiser Ambeo Soundbar has amazing Dolby Atmos capability. I am a huge fan of the How to Train Your Dragon movies and the third one, How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World on the 4K release has a tremendous Dolby Atmos track. I watched this with my son and we were blown away by what we were hearing. Soundbars these days all claim to have 3D audio or surround sound, but this one actually sends the sound all around you and the effect is the kind of thing that is very hard to put into words.

While there is no dedicated subwoofer with the Sennheiser Ambeo Soundbar, I can tell you that this thing is probably the most powerful soundbar I have ever used that does not have a dedicated subwoofer. I ended up watching the first few episodes of season 2 of Daredevil through this. First of all, I had no idea the physical copies (even the DVD) for the Netflix Daredevil show were going for so much money! Secondly, the way that this balances the sound is just amazing. Loud action scenes sound amazing when pumped through the Ambeo, but not at the expense of not being able to hear what the characters are actually saying.

Which brings me back to my next point about the Sennheiser Ambeo Soundbar and that is the way it handles dialogue. Remember when “clear voice” was the buzzword that was always used when it came to clear dialogue. Well, clear voice is probably the best way to describe what this soundbar is offering. You could watch something like BlacKkKlansman which is very dialogue heavy and you want to hear everything that is being said and not miss a beat! However, like I said before, even if there is other stuff going on, you can always hear what people are saying nice and clearly. Modern TVs tend to struggle with dialogue when other stuff is going on, this 100 percent eliminates that problem.

Samsung HW-Q90R:

As I write this the Samsung HW-Q90R is actually a couple of years old. So, I have to be honest and say that I thought it may not quite match what the Sennheiser Ambeo Soundbar offered in terms of sound quality. Well, I can tell you right off the bat that I preferred the sound quality here! I will have to be honest and say that I do not think the Dolby Atmos packs quite as much of a punch when compared side by side with the Ambeo. However, it still sounds great and gives the cinema at home experience you want. Actually, my son and I watched Venom: Let There Be Carnage with this and were very impressed with the Dolby Atmos track that the 4K Blu Ray offered. I am being very nitpicky when I say it is not as good as the Ambeo as I would wager most people would probably not be able to tell any difference!

As the Samsung HW-Q90R comes with satellite speakers you are getting a surround sound kind of experience. We actually did a double bill when we tested this out as we also watched the recently released No Time To Die which is a fitting end to this era of James Bond if you ask me! The surround sound performance of this is incredible, I think that the Dolby Atmos along with the sound coming at you from the rear, really does give you a cinema style sound. Actually, I saw No Time To Die in the theatre and I can tell you with my hand on my heart, that I felt this managed to replicate that experience very well. I know some people just want a soundbar, but to me, there is nothing better than having a full surround sound setup!

We do also have to talk about the bass. The subwoofer gives your movies that extra bit of kick. I recently got an awesome deal on the 4K releases of the Lego movies and decided to give The Lego Batman Movie another try and the bass this gave that movie was awesome. Some soundbars have a subwoofer built into them and that is great, but to me, nothing tops having a dedicated subwoofer. Overall, I think that the Samsung HW-Q90R offers you a tremendous balanced kind of surround sound experience and it is a package that if you want to have the cinema at home experience you have to consider.

The Verdict: 

I have put the Sennheiser Ambeo Soundbar against many other top tier soundbars lately and it always won this category. Do not get me wrong, it is a phenomenal soundbar and I am very impressed with the sound it offers. However, side by side with the Samsung HW-Q90R I have to say that I like what Samsung is offering more. It has a much more movie theater kind of sound thanks to the subwoofer and the satellite speakers, but I think soundbar to soundbar, it is just as good as what the Ambeo is offering. Plus, you do also have to factor in that the Q90R is a fair bit cheaper than the Ambeo too.   

The Remote Control

Next up in this Sennheiser Ambeo Soundbar vs Samsung HW-Q90R showdown we are taking a look at the remote controls. As the Sonos Arc is not here or Sonos in general, we actually have two remote controls to put side by side today. I have to say this is probably one of the closest remote control categories I have done!

Sennheiser Ambeo Soundbar: I have to say that I am very happy that the Sennheiser Ambeo Soundbar gives you a good remote control. They do have an app, but I would say that most people are going to be more than fine just using the remote control. It is a pretty compact remote control and the buttons are easy to figure out. You can play around and tinker with the sound to get it just to your liking which is fun. I will say that for this kind of price I do think they could have had a truly epic remote control like the one that comes with the Bose Smart Soundbar 700, but to be fair, people seem to prefer a more compact remote control these days. I could not imagine anyone who purchases this being disappointed with the remote control that comes with this.

Samsung HW-Q90R: I am pretty pleased with the remote control that comes with the Samsung HW-Q90R. This has a very similar style to the remote controls that Samsung has used with their various models of TVs. It is a decent size and it is not too overloaded with buttons. I do not think that anyone would have a hard time getting to grips with this remote. It has a button that lets you flick between the various sound modes which is really handy. In all. This is a damn fine remote that I could easily see myself flipping around while I am watching a movie and then getting shouted at by my wife to stop!

The Verdict: Man, this one is so hard to call. I like both of these remote controls that we have looked at here. They both offer you a great control over your soundbar and they are not all that dissimilar in terms of their size and style.  However, I do have to pick a winner here and it could be because it is newer for me, but I am raising Samsung’s hand in this round.

What Is In The Box?

Before we pick which one of these is the winner, our Sennheiser Ambeo Soundbar vs Samsung HW-Q90R fight has one last category. Here as usual we are taking a look at what you can expect to find in the boxes of these things!

Sennheiser Ambeo Soundbar:  I know it is probably pretty obvious, but the box that the Sennheiser Ambeo Soundbar comes in is huge! For a soundbar that does not have a subwoofer, I think this might be the biggest box that I have seen a soundbar come in! It is crazy, but once you open this up and see the size of the soundbar, you can tell why it needed this box. As well as the soundbar and the power cable. You also get your instruction booklet, an HDMI cable, and your remote control. A nice little bonus is this room correction microphone that can help you set up the soundbar.

Samsung HW-Q90R: As the Samsung HW-Q90R has not just a soundbar, but also a set of satellite speakers and a subwoofer, the box is pretty damn big! Also, as it comes with all that stuff, you get four power cables inside this box. There is also the remote control, an HDMI cable and they also give you wall mountain adapters and the screws to use them which I thought was a nice touch. Speaking of a nice touch, Samsung also gives you a set of batteries for the remote control which believe it or not is pretty rare these days!

The Verdict: I have to say that the Samsung HW-Q90R is the winner here. Do not get me wrong, Sennheiser are giving you what you need to get going in the box. However, I think that in terms of sheer value, the Samsung is giving you both a subwoofer and a set of satellite speakers so you are getting far more with that.  

What Is The Best?

Before I started this epic Sennheiser Ambeo Soundbar vs Samsung HW-Q90R battle, I was pretty sure this was going to be very hard for me to pick a winner. The Sennheiser Ambeo Soundbar is truly something special and I have been very impressed with it and I can see why so many people say that it is the best of the best when it comes to a soundbar. However, I have to say that I was blown away by the Samsung HW-Q90R and overall, I think it is a much better purchase! You could say that soundbar vs soundbar, the Ambeo might take it. However, I would argue that there is not much difference between the two, but the subwoofer and the satellite speakers make a hell of a difference. You could have a good sized home theater and that thing would rock it like a hundred plus seater theatre. I have to say that the price also is a factor here, I would actually say that when it comes to a surround sound setup that offers Dolby Atmos, the HW-Q90R is one of the best deals around.

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