Sennheiser, the German audio brand, has introduced their newest and most affordable soundbar, the Ambeo Soundbar Mini. Priced at $799 (€799 / £699), this soundbar is considered expensive compared to other AV accessories on the market. However, when compared to Sennheiser’s original Ambeo Soundbar Max priced at $2,499.95 and the Ambeo Soundbar Plus priced at $1,499.95, the Mini’s price seems relatively affordable.
Despite being more accessible in terms of price, the Ambeo Soundbar Mini still retains many of the key specifications found in Sennheiser’s previous soundbars. It supports various 3D surround sound formats such as Dolby Atmos, DTS:X, 360 Reality Audio, and MPEG-H. Additionally, it can be paired with up to four Sennheiser Ambeo Subs and offers a wide range of streaming options, including Bluetooth, Spotify Connect, Chromecast built-in, and AirPlay 2.
However, as its price suggests, the Ambeo Soundbar Mini has been scaled back in comparison to its older counterparts. One noticeable difference is its smaller size, measuring approximately 70 x 10 x 6.5cm. This compact design limits the space available for drivers, resulting in the Mini featuring only six drivers (four full-range and two woofers) compared to the nine drivers in the Plus model. Unlike the Plus, the Mini does not have any front-facing drivers to bounce audio off the ceiling, relying solely on virtualization technology to create the illusion of audio coming from above, similar to the second-gen Sonos Beam.
In terms of physical connectivity, the Ambeo Soundbar Mini offers a lone HDMI eARC port for connecting to the TV. Unlike its pricier counterparts, it lacks optical or aux inputs, as well as HDMI passthrough. This means that the soundbar will occupy one HDMI port on the TV without providing any additional ports as a replacement. Additionally, users are limited to the formats supported by their TV for audio pass-through or output.
Despite these compromises, Sennheiser claims that the Ambeo Soundbar Mini can virtualize 7.1.4 channels of audio, offering an immersive listening experience. This claim will be tested thoroughly in forthcoming reviews, as it has been observed that even the more expensive Ambeo Soundbar Plus had limits to its surround sound capabilities from a single location.
In terms of wireless connectivity, the Ambeo Soundbar Mini supports a wide range of streaming options. Along with the mentioned services, it also supports Tidal Connect and comes with built-in Alexa for voice commands. The soundbar’s microphones are used for calibrating the sound to the room it is placed in, and it also offers night mode and voice enhancement audio options.
The Ambeo Soundbar Mini will be available for purchase from September 1st. Make sure to stay tuned for our full review of this soundbar, coming soon to get a detailed analysis and final verdict.