Samsung HW-Q990C evaluation: Sounds acquainted

The Samsung HW-Q990C is the corporate’s newest and best Dolby Atmos soundbar, providing flagship specs at a flagship value.

Which means 11.1.4 wi-fi sound that goals to fill your lounge with sound, from ceiling to couch, and provides up a options record that’s full of all the great things you’d anticipate.


The one factor is, issues look a bit acquainted right here, when put next with final 12 months’s glorious Samsung HW-Q990B, so the place is your cash greatest spent for those who’re in search of the very best soundbar you should purchase? Here is our full evaluation.


Samsung HW-Q990C

Editor’s Alternative

$1597.99 $1697.99 Save $100

This very good soundbar delivers extremely partaking Dolby Atmos and DTS:X sonics due to a class-leading 11.1.4-channel speaker format and efficient room correction. Total sonics are very good, with loads of energy, though keep in mind the older and now cheaper HW-990B is nearly equivalent when it comes to options and general efficiency.


  • Absolutely immersive soundscape
  • Subterranean ranges of bass
  • Surprisingly good with music

  • No 4K/120 and VRR passthrough
  • No nice strides forwards in efficiency


  • Soundbar – Dimensions: 1232 x 70 x 138mm (WxHxD) / Weight: 7.7kg
  • Rear Audio system – Dimensions: 130 x 201 x 140mm / Weight: 3.4kg
  • Subwoofer – Dimensions: 220 x 413 x 410mm (WxHxD) / Weight: 11.7kg
  • End: Titan Black

The Samsung HW-Q990C sports activities precisely the identical cupboard as final 12 months, with angled corners, steel mesh grille, and a show on the entrance. The design is unassuming, in order not to attract consideration to itself, and is completed in what Samsung refers to as Titan Black, however is admittedly extra of a darkish gray.

The general construct high quality is great, and the soundbar’s bigger dimensions imply it most closely fits TVs with display sizes of 55 inches or greater. Simply watch out it would not block the display when putting in on a stand in entrance – for those who resolve to wall mount there are devoted brackets for this objective.

Samsung HW-Q990C Left View

The subwoofer and rear audio system have the identical end, although like final 12 months, the audio system characteristic a barely curved cupboard rather than straight traces, with matching steel grille to the soundbar. This creates an awesome aesthetic cohesion throughout the entire system, and within the case of the audio system, they will both be stand or wall mounted.

The subwoofer makes use of the identical 8-inch driver and acoustic lens design as final 12 months, which is meant to generate bass with better uniformity, thus producing a low-end that is clearer and extra exact.

Whereas the sub and two rears are wi-fi from each other and the principle soundbar unit, do keep in mind that every one three nonetheless require energy sockets.

Connections and management

  • HDMI output (eARC); 2 x HDMI enter; Optical digital enter
  • Wi-Fi; Bluetooth; AirPlay 2
  • Full distant management
  • SmartThings app (iOS/Android)
  • Alexa built-in

The Samsung HW-Q990C homes a strong set of bodily connections in a recess on the rear. Right here you will discover an optical digital enter, two HDMI inputs and an HDMI output that helps eARC. When it comes to wi-fi connectivity, you additionally get Bluetooth, Wi-Fi and AirPlay 2.

All of the HDMI ports passthrough 4K/60p, and each model of HDR (HDR10, HLG, HDR10+ and Dolby Imaginative and prescient). Additionally they help ALLM, however nonetheless cannot deal with VRR or the 4K/120 excessive body price, which is disappointing given the few variations in comparison with final 12 months’s HW-Q990B.

Samsung HW-Q990C Connections

The One Distant Management stays comfy to carry and intuitive to make use of, whereas the SmartThings app can be successfully designed, making setup straightforward by permitting customers to shortly discover and create a Wi-Fi connection, configure Alexa, and replace the firmware if crucial.

When it comes to the day-to-day operation of the HW-Q990C, customers have a alternative of the buttons on the soundbar itself, the supplied distant, the SmartThings app, voice management by Alexa, or utilizing their TV distant by way of HDMI-CEC. Spoilt for alternative, some may say.


  • 11.1.4-channel system
  • Dolby Atmos and DTS:X
  • SpaceFit Sound Professional
  • Q Symphony Gen III
  • Hello-Res Audio (24-bit/192kHz)
  • SmartThings Hub

The Samsung HW-Q990C’s headline characteristic stays its extremely immersive 11.1.4-channel speaker format, and whereas the speaker rely is similar as final 12 months, it might most likely be bodily inconceivable to cram any extra drivers into the soundbar and wi-fi surrounds.

The system consists of entrance left, proper and centre channels, entrance and rear overhead channels, width channels on the entrance, and aspect channels on the entrance and rear. All these audio system enable the Q990C to make full use of its help of the Dolby Atmos and DTS:X object-based audio codecs.

The rear audio system and subwoofer hook up with the soundbar wirelessly, and for those who like the concept of maintaining the cabling to a minimal, there’s additionally Wi-fi Atmos. This permits the format to be transmitted wirelessly by way of Wi-Fi utilizing Dolby Digital Plus from supporting Samsung TVs.

Samsung HW-Q990C Surrounds

Samsung’s SpaceFit Sound Gen Professional makes use of a built-in microphone to calibrate the bass response for higher integration with the opposite audio system, whereas concurrently optimising the room correction for a particular surroundings. The result’s a better sense of tonal stability and smoother bass.

When it comes to sound modes, there’s Adaptive Sound 2.0, which makes use of AI-enhanced processing, whereas others embrace Commonplace, Encompass Sound and Recreation Professional 2.0. There’s additionally a Evening mode if you might want to flatten the dynamic vary to not disturb others, and a Voice Enhancement mode to enhance hard-to-hear dialogue.

For these with a suitable Samsung TV, Q Symphony Gen III permits the soundbar to combine together with your TV, making full use of the latter’s further processing energy, in addition to all of the obtainable audio system. The result’s a much bigger entrance soundstage, and it even works utilizing a wired or wi-fi connection.

This 12 months Samsung has included the brand new SmartThings Hub, permitting you to make use of the SmartThings app to manage all of the units in your house, together with people who use the ZigBee high-level communication protocols to create private space networks for switches, lighting, curtains and so on.

After all, it will also be used to manage the HW-Q990C, so you may management all of the settings and sound modes out of your telephone or pill.

Samsung HW-Q990C App

Lastly, there is a good assistant and voice management due to built-in Amazon Alexa, together with help for a number of music streaming providers, Hello-Res Audio, Faucet Sound for supporting Samsung units, and the Lively Voice Amplifier (AVA), which will be useful in noisy environment.


The Samsung HW-Q990C is extremely straightforward to put in, with the subwoofer and rear audio system pairing routinely when first powered up. The SmartThings app does all the remainder, discovering and connecting the soundbar to the Wi-Fi community, configuring Alexa, and updating the firmware.

The upgraded SpaceFit Sound Gen Professional is equally intuitive, routinely taking measurements to make sure the soundstage is corrected for the room and eliminating any acoustic aberrations. The sub can be correctly built-in with the opposite audio system, making a cohesive system with balanced bass.

Now let’s begin off with the chilly exhausting info – in the case of efficiency, not quite a bit has modified right here from the HW-Q990B. That is no unhealthy factor, it is excellent system, however we won’t assist however be a bit disillusioned that issues have not been pushed ahead a bit, contemplating that system is now half the worth.

Nonetheless, in the case of music, the Q990C stays fantastically succesful due to its bigger drivers and general width. There’s good stereo separation, and a lovely readability, whereas the highly effective sub offers a strong basis of bass that feels tight and managed due to the efficient room correction.

Samsung HW-Q990C Front View

The Samsung builds on these strengths in the case of multi-channel audio, with the side-firing audio system offering further width to the entrance soundstage, the centre channel guaranteeing dialogue is obvious and targeted on the display, and the surrounds making a cohesive 5.1-channel sound area.

Consequently, any encompass results are properly outlined and expertly steered from speaker to speaker. There’s additionally a seamless sensation of tonal stability resulting from using equivalent drivers and room correction, whereas the wi-fi connections themselves are freed from annoying delays or dropouts.

As quickly as you progress on to completely immersive, object-based audio soundtracks that use Dolby Atmos or DTS:X, the whole 11.1.4-channel system comes into its personal. The sense of sonic envelopment is outstanding, making a plausible and three-dimensional acoustic hemisphere.

The usage of entrance and rear up-firing audio system actually make a distinction, permitting the system to maneuver sounds round overhead in a practical aural bubble. Nevertheless, the up-firing drivers effectiveness in creating overhead channels will rely in your ceiling – the decrease and flatter, the higher.

The general soundstage is big, with enough amplification to retain glorious dynamic vary, and sufficient energy to fill a decent-sized room. The 8-inch subwoofer offers exceptionally deep and highly effective bass, with out dominating the opposite channels or swamping the soundstage.

Samsung HW-Q990C Subwoofer

This potential to create a way of scale is completely demonstrated by Dune, with its energetic Atmos combine. The flight by the sandstorm makes use of each channel to immerse you within the chaos, whereas the sub provides a daunting feeling of overwhelming energy – and but, dialogue is at all times clear and comprehensible.

The efficiency is equally spectacular with gaming, and the general tonal stability means results transfer from speaker to speaker with out sounding noticeably totally different. That is very efficient throughout first-person shooters, making a seamless acoustic expertise as you alter your viewpoint.

Whether or not you are watching TV or films, listening to music or enjoying video games, then, the HW-Q990C delivers a fascinating, gratifying and extremely immersive efficiency that is certain to please.


The Samsung HW-Q990C is a unbelievable soundbar that delivers class-leading immersion in the case of decoding Dolby Atmos and DTS:X object-based audio. It creates a discreet however highly effective 11.1.4-channel system that’s straightforward to put in, and comes packed to the brim with options – although the dearth of VRR and 4K/120 passthrough is a little bit of a disgrace.

Nonetheless, all of that might normally make this a severely compelling purchase… if it wasn’t for final 12 months’s glorious – and now closely discounted – HW-Q990B.

Whereas the efficiency right here is undoubtedly very good – and it stays a five-star suggestion for that cause – not an enormous quantity has modified right here from final 12 months’s HW-Q990B. Contemplating that soundbar is now half the worth of this one, your cash might be higher spent there, when you can nonetheless get it.

However discover this soundbar system bundled with a TV or on the receiving finish of another low cost, then snap it up. It truly is the whole bundle.

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