Soundbars are key components of a home theater system. However, these audio devices don’t always come cheap. So when VIZIO SB3821-C6 was released at an attractive price tag, it became a bestseller.
And if you’re wondering if this soundbar is right for you, we discussed a brief VIZIO SB3821-C6 review below to help you out.
Overview of the VIZIO SB3821-C6 Soundbar
The VIZIO SB3821-C6 Soundbar isn’t a new offering in the market. It’s been around for a couple of years and remains one of the most popular options for home theaters and speaker systems on a budget.
This soundbar offers up to 100 dB of crystal clear audio with only 1% of harmonic distortion. It also comes bundled with a wireless subwoofer that enhances the bass sounds of your music, movie, TV, and other media.
Moreover, this soundbar works through Bluetooth and boasts Dolby audio digital decoding. This guarantees a clear and reliable audio experience even on a wireless setting.
Aside from the Dolby technology, the VIZIO SB3821-C6 has the DTS audio post-processing and DTS TruVolume, making it a champ in audio quality.
With the subwoofer and soundbar bundle, the price tag of this unit is a steal. Sure, it’s not the most exquisite model, but it does packs a punch when it comes to sound quality, brand reputation, and overall value.
VIZIO Soundbar SB3821-C6 Review
Design and build
VIZIO stick with simple and sleek with their SB3821-C6 soundbar and subwoofer. Just like any soundbar, this one from VIZIO is made of plastic paired with black panels and a grille. On both ends, you’ll find a brushed aluminum cover. Overall, the build and design are visually appealing and will blend with most home theaters.
Moreover, this soundbar is 38” wide, 3” tall, and 3” deep. It’s considerably compact compared to the likes of Sonos Arc and the Bose 700.
However, the controls are placed in a recessed part at the rear. It’s a bit difficult to access, much so if you’re mounting the soundbar or placing it in a hidden spot. Nevertheless, this part is forgivable and is something you’ll get used to overtime.
Sound quality and performance
In terms of sound quality, the VIZIO SB3821-C6 delivers up to 100 dB of sound. It’s not screamingly loud, but more than enough to fill an average room with crisp audio. The minimal harmonic distortion also prevents the sound from cracking even if you use the highest volume setting.
Moreover, this soundbar is equipped with two drivers, each one measuring 2.75 inches. It’s made to handle high frequencies while the separate subwoofer complements by producing the lower ranges. When set up together, both the subwoofer and the soundbar will deliver a surround sound effect.
This is no wonder because the VIZIO SB3821-C6 uses Dolby Digital technology. It’s the gold standard for streaming and even cinema settings. Paired with the DTS TruVolume and DTS TruSurround, your ears will be treated to satisfying audio.
However, since this soundbar is in the lower to the mid-price range, you shouldn’t expect a lot. Sure, it comes with a wireless subwoofer, but it doesn’t have a very rich mid-bass. Nevertheless, it offers crisp audio without pushing its drivers to the limits.
Overall, this VIZIO soundbar will produce clear dialogues when used while watching movies or TV shows. The bass rumble is also great and it doesn’t make the subwoofer buzz or crackle.
But then again, the VIZIO SB3821-C6 is far from 5.1 or 7.1 speaker systems. Nevertheless, the price tag makes this part a reasonable trade-off.
Sound enhancement and controls
The VIZIO SB3821-C6 is easy to set up and it comes with simple remote control. Here, you can tweak the volume, power, EQ, and Bluetooth connection of the soundbar.
However, we found it odd that VIZIO placed the onboard controls at the back of the soundbar. Also, it was recessed, making it hard to access once the system is mounted or placed on the floor. It could have been more convenient if VIZIO placed the controls at the top of the soundbar instead.
Nevertheless, the remote control somewhat compensates for this small issue. Also, the subwoofer that it comes with is wireless and the overall setup is much easier compared to Bose 700 or even the expensive Sonos Arc.
If there’s one caveat I have over the controls of this soundbar, it would be the noticeable lag on the remote’s response. It takes a while for the remote to respond when you’re using it at a far distance.
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Connectivity and inputs
When it comes to connectivity, we don’t have major complaints with VIZIO SB3821-C6 Soundbar. It has built-in Bluetooth connectivity enough to put Sonos Arc to shame. Also, the distance range stretches up to 30 feet, which is already a champ for most living rooms.
However, to ensure that the Bluetooth connectivity won’t be disrupted, your device should be located in an unblocked line of sight from the soundbar. Walls, large decors, and furniture may affect Bluetooth efficiency, especially when the device is placed at a far distance.
Aside from Bluetooth, you can also use the wired connection of this VIZIO soundbar. It has RCA, USB, and aux slots. However, this one doesn’t have an HDMI connection, which can be a deal-breaker for those who want a single cable for both audio input and output.
Overall, connecting to the VIZIO SB3821-C6 is a total breeze. It doesn’t require any app configuration, which means that the soundbar has a plug-and-play design. This is a very great feature, especially for those who aren’t very techie.
Its mid-range price tag makes the VIZIO SB3821-C6 an attractive choice for those on a budget. And for a small price, you’ll get both the soundbar and a subwoofer on a bundle. For someone who’s been testing and using soundbars for years, this is a deal you shouldn’t miss out.
Still, it’s important to understand that VIZIO’s pricing is proportional to the features it offers. This soundbar doesn’t have an HDMI connection and its controls are still left to be desired.
Nonetheless, you still get Dolby Digital and reasonable quality. Build-wise, the VIZIO SB3821-C6 can give other soundbars a run for their money.
Compared to brands like LG, Bose, Sonos, JBL, Anker, and so on, VIZIO is probably the one that offers the most budget-friendly options.
- Enjoy 100 dB of room filling, crystal clear sound with less than 1 percent total harmonic distortion
- Wireless subwoofer adds rich bass from anywhere in the room
- Built in Bluetooth lets you lose the wires and listen to your music with a tap of a finger with built in Bluetooth. Sound pressure level - 100 dB. Sound bar frequency - 50 hertz - 19 hertz
- Premium audio with Dolby digital decoding, plus DTS TruVolume and DTS audio post processing
- Wireless remote for convenient volume, input and audio controls; Wireless subwoofer range approximately 60 feet – line of sight from sound bar
What we like about VIZIO SB3821-C6
Compact design. This 38” wide soundbar is considerably compact compared to its competitor models. It suits home theater systems with minimal space to spare. It’s also easy to mount and it won’t look bulky if placed on the floor.
- Sleek design. The combination of black and aluminum on the sides makes this soundbar look more expensive than its actual price.
- Value for money bundled. For an affordable price, you’ll get a bundle of VIZIO soundbar and subwoofer. This is an unbeatable offer, especially if you’re still setting up your home theater system.
- Dolby Digital. For this price, it’s surprising that VIZIO managed to equip its soundbar with Dolby Digital technology. This is why you can enjoy quality audio without breaking the bank.
- Solid highs. One thing we really love about the VIZIO SB3821-C6 is its solid high sounds. It doesn’t crackle, except for exceptionally high-pitched sounds.
- Multiple connectivities. This VIZIO soundbar allows for both wireless and wired connections. You can use Bluetooth, RCA, USB, and auxiliary for your audio.
- Easy to set up. Unlike other soundbars that require app connectivity, the VIZIO SB3821-C6 has a plug-and-play design. You can use it straight from the box.
- Direct TV remote synchronization. Once you turn your TV on, the optical cable will automatically turn the soundbar on as well. It does so seamlessly, which is added convenience.
- Low price point. You’ll get the best bang for the buck when it comes to this soundbar and subwoofer bundle. It’s cheaper than other leading audio brands without compromising the sound quality.
What we don’t like about VIZIO SB3821-C6
- No HDMI. One major downside of the VIZIO SB3821-C6 is it doesn’t have an HDMI port. This takes away some level of future-proofing for this soundbar as more and more units are being equipped with HDMI-ARC.
- Poor controls placement. The controls are located at a recessed spot at the back of the soundbar. This makes it difficult to access, especially when the speaker is mounted.
- Short-ranged subwoofer. Overall, the subwoofer on this package produces excellent sound quality. However, it has a short-range and must be placed right next to the soundbar for optimal connectivity.
- Random sound crackling. From time to time, the VIZIO soundbar will crackle, especially under very high sounds. Nevertheless, the crackling will stop once you restart the soundbar.
- The bass sound isn’t very full. Despite having a separate subwoofer, this VIZIO soundbar still doesn’t deliver the deepest and fullest bass sound. Nevertheless, it’s an acceptable trade-off for this price range.
- Remote control lag. Sometimes, the remote control will lag, much so if you’re located too far from the soundbar.
- Limited sound enhancements. Unlike other soundbars with app connectivity, the VIZIO SB3821-C6 doesn’t have much to offer when it comes to sound enhancement. Sure, it has an EQ feature, but not as comprehensive as the one you’ll find on expensive soundbars.
Is the VIZIO SB3821-C6 Soundbar worth it?
If you’re looking for a budget-friendly and high-quality soundbar, there’s no reason not to try the VIZIO SB3821-C6. It packs a punch of sound quality, usable features, and aesthetic build. Also, it’s bundled with a subwoofer for the best listening experience.
However, if you’re a bass head and looking for full mids and lows, this VIZIO unit may not be for you. After all, it’s an entry-level soundbar, so you can’t expect it to have the same audio profile as expensive units.
Overall, this soundbar has several trade-offs, but it remains worth the money. If you’re new to soundbars and hesitant to spend top dollar, the VIZIO SB3821-C6 is an excellent choice.
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Frequently Asked Questions
Which is better, VIZIO or LG?
Both VIZIO and LG offer a great line of soundbars. If you’re looking for budget-friendly options with reasonable quality, VIZIO is the most common choice. Meanwhile, LG tends to have a higher price tag, but with better sound enhancement features. Overall, it’s important to consider the features you like, your budget, and the sound quality you prefer.
Is VIZIO a good brand?
VIZIO, including its television and audio devices, is well-placed in the market. They offer good value for money without being extremely expensive. Beyond the brand, it’s important to consider the features of the specific soundbar or device you’re planning to get from VIZIO.
Does VIZIO have Dolby Atmos?
VIZIO uses Dolby technology in many of its soundbars and television sets. It provides a surround sound effect as well as gold-standard audio quality. This is the same technology used in cinemas, ensuring that your home theater will deliver a satisfying viewing and listening experience.
Do VIZIO soundbars work with any TV?
Most VIZIO soundbars, including the SB3821-C6 model, works with any TV. The good thing is that VIZIO offers multiple connectivity options to ensure that it will match your existing television. You can use any of the wired inputs to suit the TV model you have.
How long does a VIZIO soundbar last?
The longevity of your VIZIO soundbar depends on how much you use it and how you care for it. In general, a typical VIZIO soundbar will remain in good condition for at least 6 years. Others can stretch their soundbar’s lifespan for up to 16 years. This proves the durable build of VIZIO soundbars and speaker systems.
The VIZIO SB3821-C6 Soundbar offers the right balance of an affordable price tag and excellent sound quality. While it’s not the most premium option in the market, this soundbar delivers satisfying audio.
We hope that this VIZIO SB3821-C6 review helps you decide if this soundbar is right for your money. If you have any questions or inquiries, feel free to drop them in the comment section below!