Samsung HW-Q800C review: Wireless Dolby Atmos sound perfect for most large living rooms

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In my last soundbar review, I had some good things to say about the Denon DHT-S517. While Denon did great with its effort, it was only good enough for a mid-sized bed or living room. So what do you do if you want better quality sound in a larger bed or living room? Well, you buy the Samsung HW-Q800C with Dolby Atmos, a powerful soundbar with room-filling sound.

Estimated reading time: 9 minutes

Samsung has an impeccable reputation in the home theater segment, and they brought their A-game with the Samsung HW-Q800C. We tested this Dolby Atmos capable soundbar with the Samsung S95B QD OLED TV. That’s an integral part of this review, as the S95B is Q-Symphony capable, and that will make the experience with this soundbar even better. However, you do not need a Samsung TV to get the most out of this soundbar, though it is helpful. Read on for the full review of the Samsung HW-Q800C Dolby Atmos soundbar.

The Quick Take

I am a sucker for Samsung’s soundbars; they are among the best on the market and the next best thing to a complete AV system. The Samsung HW-Q800C has all the power you need to elevate your home theater experience to its next level.

The HW-Q800C will enhance any TV’s sound, thus providing a better overall experience. While some special features are only available with a Samsung TV that supports Q-Symphony, you hardly require those to be impressed.

Still, if you own a Samsung TV with Q-Symphony capability, you will be astonished at how well the feature works.

The HW-Q800C is a fantastic soundbar that brings Dolby Atmos to your home theater setup. It’s perfect for larger beds and living rooms by utilizing its 11 speakers and subwoofer to envelop the listener in a room-filling experience.

Specifications

The Samsung HW-Q800C has the following features and specifications:

  • Number of Channels: 5.1.2
  • Number of Speakers: 11
  • Total Power: 360W
  • Subwoofer Type: Wireless
  • Center Speaker: Yes
  • Up-firing speaker: Yes
  • Side-firing speakers: Yes
  • Q-Symphony Capable: Yes
  • Dolby: Dolby Atmos, Dolby TrueHD, Dolby Digital Plus, Dolby MAT (ATMOS Music)
  • DTS: DTS:X DTS-HD HRA DTS-HD MA DTS Express DTS 5.1ch
  • Sound Modes: Surround Sound expansion, Game Pro, Standard, Adaptive
  • Active Voice Amplifier (AVA): Yes
  • Auto AV Sync: Yes
  • Wide Range Tweeter: Yes
  • Night Mode: Yes
  • Voice Enhance: Yes
  • SpaceFit Sound Pro Capable: Yes
  • Hi-Res Audio Decoding: Yes
  • LPCM: Multi-channel
  • 4K Video Pass: Yes
  • HDR: HDR 10+
  • AV Decoding Formats: WAV, MP3, WMA, OGG, FLAC, AAC, ALAC, and AIFF
  • Network: Wi-Fi 2.4/5GHz and Bluetooth
  • Connectivity: Bluetooth (SBC), HDMI In, HDMI Out, HDMI-CEC, HDMI eARC, Optical, and Auto Power Link
  • Package Dimensions in inches (W × H × D): 46.5 × 22.7 × 10.7
  • Package Weight in pounds: 39.7
  • Subwoofer Size in inches: 8.3 × 15.9 × 15.9
  • Set Weight in pounds: 32.8
  • Main unit weight in pounds: 11.2
  • Subwoofer weight in pounds: 21.6
  • Main Unit size in inches: 43.7 × 2.4 × 4.7
  • Package size in inches: 46.5 × 22.7 × 10.7

What’s In The Box

What's In The Box HW-Q800C soundbar
  • Samsung HW-Q800C soundbar
  • Samsung HW-Q800C subwoofer
  • Wall Bracket and hardware
  • HDMI Cable
  • 2 Power Cables
  • Remote
  • Batteries
  • Manuals and Documentation

Design

The last Q800 series soundbar I reviewed was a few years ago, and the design has changed slightly, but not extremely. The basic shape and size of the Samsung HW-Q800C are noticeably different from the HW-Q800A from 2021. What remains the same is the aluminum construction and quality.

The overall look of the Samsung HW-Q800C is nice, though I wouldn’t call it a piece of art. Despite the lack of beauty, it’s not ugly, and when placed directly in front of the TV, it’s hardly noticeable. You can also mount it on the wall with the included wall brackets.

Taking a tour around the soundbar, you will find the Multi-Function, Power, Volume, and Mic buttons on the top. These are clicky buttons, not touch-sensitive, and I prefer this. The front of the Samsung HW-Q800C houses a small LED display showing the current status and mode of the soundbar. It does turn off after a few seconds, so it’s not on all the time, which is impressive.

Moving down to the bottom of the Samsung HW-Q800C, we find the power port, service port, Optical port, HDMI port, and HDMI eARC port. That’s all you’ll see on this puppy; the rest is high-quality aluminum and plastics.

The remote is also simple but allows you to control the source, Bluetooth pairing, muting, sound mode, playback, woofer level, and tone control. While you don’t need the remote to turn the volume up and down, you can use your TV remote for that; I would keep the soundbar remote handy for fine adjustments—more on adjustments and modes in the following sections.

Like most Samsung remotes, the design is simple and to the point. I recommend reading the manual because you may miss many features and controls on the remote if you don’t research it.

Overall, the design of the HW-800C is nice and straightforward, yet it is robust and well-built. It’s not ugly; if you place it correctly, it blends right in without sticking out.

Ease of Use and Setup

Samsung HW-Q800C review: Wireless Dolby Atmos sound perfect for most large living rooms

Using and setting up the Samsung HW-Q800C is straightforward. If you’re using a non-Samsung TV, all you need to do is plug it in, and you’re on your way. If you’re using a Samsung TV, the TV should detect the soundbar and ask if you want to set it up, go through the quick and simple setup process, and you’re in.

I opted to place the HW-Q800C under and in front of the S95B; it is recommended not to slip the soundbar under the TV. Putting it in front of the screen allows the up-firing speakers to work properly. Not to mention the side-firing speakers.

You can mount the HW-Q800C on the wall using the included brackets and hardware. You can place it under the TV if it is also wall mounted. Or if your TV is on a stand, you could put it behind and mount the soundbar on the wall behind the TV. But be aware that the front-firing speakers may be blocked, depending on how high or low you mount the soundbar. I recommend finding studs, but you could also use heavy-duty wall anchors. The video below is a year old, but the same basic steps apply to the HW-Q800C.

Samsung’s SpaceFit sound will automatically calibrate the sound to your room. A built-in microphone inside the subwoofer and the soundbar ensure sound settings are auto-optimized and calibrated to match the dimensions of your room. This system works very well and delivers an excellent experience.

Overall, the Samsung HW-Q800C is straightforward and very easy to set up. Once everything is in place, you don’t need to worry about anything else.

Sound and Features

“The Q800C produces life-like audio through 5.1.2 Ch. True Dolby Atmos sound while harmonizing with your Samsung TV to maximize the potential of both.”

That’s what the company’s website says about the Samsung HW-Q800C; to translate that, they are referring to the Q-Symphony sound feature in this soundbar and compatible Samsung TVs. With Q-Symphony, the HW-Q800C pairs with your TV speakers to operate as one. Together, they optimize all the channels to deliver a more immersive sound experience.

The first time I heard Q-Symphony, I was blown away, and the technology is fantastic. I have always wanted to use my soundbars and my TV speakers, but the limitation has always been syncing. There has always been an issue with syncing the sound from the soundbar to the sound from the TV. Samsung solved that, and the HW-Q800C combined with a compatible Samsung TV now allows you to use ALL THE SPEAKERS!

The sound coming from this 5.1.2 Dolby Atmos soundbar fills the room, and the subwoofer shakes the floor. Movies like Top Gun Maverick and Lord of the Rings are much more enjoyable with the added channels, Dolby Atmos, and surround sound. The Samsung HW-Q800C delivers impressive sound that immersed me in the content I was watching. It’s incredible for larger bedrooms and living rooms.

But the remarkable sound and Q-Symphony aren’t the only things going for the Samsung HW-Q800C. There are other features to list, probably more than we can cover here, but here are a few.

  • Active Voice Amplifier (AVA): Analyzes external noise in real-time while the soundbar is playing, so that voice audio can always be heard clearly.
  • Bluetooth Connectivity: You can connect your smartphone to the HW-Q800C and play your favorite music directly from the soundbar, and music sounds stunning on this soundbar.
  • Voice Assistant Compatible: Activate hands-free navigation of your soundbar and TV using built-in voice assistants. Play your favorite songs, or tune in to your favorite shows and sporting events–all with a straightforward voice command.
  • Adaptive Sound: Sick of missing lines? Hear voices better, even at low volume, with intelligently optimized audio. Scenes are analyzed in real-time to pull out the essential audio based on the type of content.
  • Game Mode Pro: The game is calling. Powerful up-firing speakers, side-firing speakers, and robust woofers unlock a more intuitive gaming experience with 3D-optimized sound.

Overall, the Samsung HW-Q800C sounds terrific. Even without a Samsung TV, it sounds incredible. You will be delighted if you have a Q-Symphony-compatible TV.

Price/Value

The Samsung HW-Q800C is pricey, but it holds its value and is worth the $999 Samsung is asking for this guy. As of this review, it is on sale for $799 on Samsung’s website, which is a great deal. I know it’s hard to plunk this much money on a soundbar, but if you watch a lot of movies and TV at home, the HW-Q800C is an investment and will pay you back quickly.

Wrap Up

Samsung does it again with its 800 series of soundbars. This series is sort of the midrange of the Samsung soundbar lineup. It’s a bit more expensive than most soundbars, but not crazy expensive like the 900 series. But the Samsung HW-Q800C is well worth the investment if you’re serious about improving your home theater experience.

Last Updated on May 2, 2023.

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