Panasonic Sound Bar Reviews: SC-HTB70

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Panasonic home theater systems are among the industry pioneer and early innovators. In its heyday, Japanese consumer electronics companies dominated almost the entire spectrum of home theater devices and Panasonic is one of them. Before LCD and LED TV became mainstream, Panasonic Plasma TVs were the darling of the industry and they enjoyed the lion share of the market. Japanese’ market dominance may have been replaced by the Koreans, but they are nonetheless still very much respected for their fine engineering quality. The good news for consumers is Panasonic home entertainment division still continues to innovate. This time, we are going to talk about Panasonic sound bar reviews. One model that is in our spotlight is the latest Panasonic SC-HTB70 sound bar system.

Panasonic Sound Bar Reviews SC-HTB20

Click here to check stock availability of SC-HTB20 at Amazon

Panasonic Sound Bar Reviews: Durability

The biggest reason why Japanese consumer electronic giants were able to rule the land was because they were really able to make great hardware. The rise of mobile computing is unfortunate because superior hardware alone is no longer good enough without thriving software ecosystem. Unlike smartphone and tablet market, the technology evolution in home theater system is not as fast and furious. That is why Japanese-based Panasonic home theater systems and the rest are still relevant and popular.

The Panasonic SC-HTB70 is a great sound bar system with superior hardware built. It is a durable machine, on top of being a loud one. It can take drops from the entertainment unit with no problem whatsoever, and it can last many years before requiring much of any maintenance at all. The SC-HTB70 is kid-proof, as well (well, as kid-proof as it could get, anyway), so it can take light spills on its exterior, the occasional drop, and the not-so-occasional bump. Don’t travel with it – it’s not really made for that – but do feel free to put it in the den where the whole family can interact with it. Ultimately, the SC-HTB70 can be judged as one of the better choices for the family or office environment.

Click here to see our full sound bar comparison and how your favorite sound bar fares

Performance of SC-HTB70

Following the success of flatscreen LED TV, sound bar home theater system is now flooding the market. From acoustic point of view, the shrinking living room size is both good and bad. Smaller room is good if we are talking about surround sound system as the sound will be trapped and confined, hence giving a certain degree of natural surround effect. But smaller room creates new set of limitations and space is the biggest limitation. If you think of it, this space limitation is the catalyst behind the skyrocketing success of thinner TVs. When you have limited amount of space to put your Panasonic TV, Blu-ray / DVD player and audio surround system, that is when creative engineering and re-thinking is needed.

Panasonic sound bars stand out in this regard. What started in earlier SC-HTB20 model, Panasonic has enhanced the automatic multiple position sound callibration. This feature is really cool because it allows you to place the sound bar at 4 different angles and still produce optimum surround sound experience. This is achieved by advanced algorithm that detects the angle at which the sound bar unit is placed. For example, most sound bar models such as Samsung HW-F450 will not give you a good surround sound experience if you place it on top of the TV console, facing upwards. This can be easily explained as the generated sound is not directed towards where the audiences are located. Our Panasonic sound bar reviews reveal that the latest Panasonic SC-HTB70 promises to overcome this limitation.

Click here to find out which sound bars are in our Top 3 list

Comparison with SC-HTB20

The thing with gadget and electronic devices is technology moves so fast that it is always good to keep a tab on what improvement(s) is(are) introduced with each new release compared to the incumbent. The SC-HTB70 is quite different from all previous Panasonic sound bar models. The closest is SC-HTB20.

One feature that is present in SC-HTB20 but not the latest model is wireless subwoofer. This is interesting to me and this is quite a bold decision. Many Panasonic sound bar reviews are quick to highlight and criticize as such move is seen as going against the mainstream. Many critics doubt the oomph power that SC-HTB70 will be able to deliver. After testing it out, I personally feel that it has sufficient oomph to deliver decent surround sound experience for small room set up. What I mean by small room is the typical apartment living room size of 3m x 5m. Bigger than that, I agree that a separate powered sub would do a neater job. Read our wireless subwoofer reviews to find out what level of performance you can expect of sound bar systems with wireless subwoofer.

The other feature that we saw in SC-HTB20 but not SC-HTB70 is the detachable feature. The idea is quite a nice one. Unlike most main sound bar units that reside in single housing, the unit in SC-HTB20 can be detached. This allows you to place the sound bar in vertical layout which looks more like traditional multi-speaker systems. I’m not sure why this feature is removed in the latest model and curious to find out the reason.

The last feature that we want to highlight in this Panasonic sound bar reviews is the improved frequency response built in the latest model compared to its predecessor. The SC-HTB20 may have separate sub but its frequency response is only up to 100Hz while the integrated sub in SC-HTB70 is up to 125Hz. If this sounds too techie for you, let me put it in simpler terms. In layment term, it means that the new subwoofer has better bass support.

Final Verdict

Based on our concise Panasonic sound bar reviews, we see the latest SC-HTB70 as a sexy option for those who are looking for the ultimate simplicity. Doing away with the wireless sub is controversial but it has served its purpose well. I’m not saying that is the best sound bar, but it certainly delivers enough kick for small room usage and that is achieved by using only a single audio bar.

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