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(Pocket-lint) - When Bang & Olufsen unveils a new product it doesn't do things by half.

On the face of it, the Beosound Theatre is a soundbar. It is designed to accompany a TV and provide a multi-channel system from the one unit.

However, it is also so much more besides. We got to demo one on the eve of the IFA consumer trade show in Berlin and found out why.

Our quick take

Bang & Olufsen has a fine heritage in audio and the Beosound Theatre looks set to continue its run. The 12 speaker drivers provide as wide a soundstage as you are likely to get from a single unit system, while bass is good enough that you won't miss a dedicated subwoofer.

Of course, we'd need a proper listen for a longer period, but everything we've heard so far is highly impressive.

The modular nature of the bar is well thought out and implemented too - especially the way it can accommodate different sizes of TV in tabletop or floor standing modes.

It'll all come down to price at the end of the day - how much you're willing to pay for premium performance - but the product certainly has the potential to meet expectations. 

Bang & Olufsen Beosound Theatre initial review: Redefining the sound bar

Bang & Olufsen Beosound Theatre

For
  • Great bass levels from internal woofers
  • Room-filling sound
  • Very wide soundstage
  • Beautiful design
Against
  • Price is going to be a defining factor for many

Beosoundbar

Bang & Olufsen has created something different with the Beosound Theatre. It contains 12 speaker drivers, with a mighty central unit, two woofers, and others firing in different directions - including upwards for Dolby Atmos purposes.

Pocket-lint Beosound Theatre photo 5

However, the first thing you notice is the design. You can opt for a fabric-covered version that looks more conventional, but where's the fun in that?

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The wooden slats on that option give the bar a distinctly 70s feel - and we heartily approve. It is retro in look, yet modern in implementation.

There are three different mounting modes - wall, table and dedicated stand - with each able to be matched with just about any TV, not just those made by B&O. Indeed, you can even swap certain design elements to match the width of a 55-, 65- or 70-inch set, to make sure it is even more suited.

Pocket-lint Beosound Theatre photo 6

The customisation doesn't stop there either, as Bang & Olufsen told us that the Theatre has been built to be modular and upgradeable throughout. If new connections come around in the next few years, say, that part of the rear can be swapped with an updated unit. It's clever and when you make such an investment, good to hear.

Audio thrills

Also good to hear is the overall performance. The Beosound Theatre is an excellent piece of kit.

Pocket-lint Beosound Theatre photo 10

We only got a brief audio demo, with some music and a couple of movie sequences to give us impressions of its prowess in different circumstances.

Bass levels were particularly good - with a room-filling sound from just the one system. And, the centre channel ensures that voice is clear and precise no matter the grunt coming from other directions.

We really need more time with the speaker to give a more rounded verdict, but signs are great so far.

We'll bring you more when we can.

To recap

In all, Bang & Olufsen has created a desirable product - a space saver that also provides room filling sound with little effort. It also looks great, of course.

Writing by Rik Henderson. Editing by Chris Hall.