One thing that has stood out over the past year, especially during repeated lockdowns is how bad my TV speakers REALLY are. To make matters worse, my TV even has a thin speaker running across the bottom. It’s not why I bought the TV (honest), but you’d hope it would be half decent or at least passable since it’s apparently a feature. In truth, I bought a Philips TV for the Ambilight feature which I absolutely love.
To be honest, I’d learned to tolerate the sound, we’d previously had a cheap sound base with an inbuilt subwoofer and whilst it was an improvement over the TV speakers,(though that wasn’t hard) convenience won. Sadly, the soundbase remote was quickly lost to ‘that special safe place’ and so with it our interest in standing up and turning it on and changing the volume. Lazy, I know, but it’s an important point that I’ll revisit later.
So when we were invited to review the Majority K2 2.1 soundbar and subwoofer we really questioned whether it was worth it. Transparency: We were given the soundbar to review but we were not paid to review it, nor were we asked in any way to give a positive review in return for the product. However, they did promise to plant trees once the review was live and give proof that they had done so, something they are also offering to do via their website, It’s a nice touch in my humble opinion.
When I started to go through the spec sheet for what I would look for in a soundbar, I quickly realised that most, if not all were ticked. What was even more surprising was that it did so for a soundbar and subwoofer costing £79.99 RRP.
Here is my list and my thoughts.
ARC support: AKA, audio via HDMI. A must if your TV supports it and you can spare the HDMI port. Aside from the fully digital link, it most importantly allows you to control the volume with your normal TV remote. Or in our case our Amazon Fire Stick 4K remote as our TV remote is currently in ‘that special safe place’.
A wireless subwoofer: The main reason for this being a requirement is that our TV is against the wall of our neighbours’ house. However, we are lucky enough to not have any neighbours on the other side of our living room. It also had another unintended use as one of the key negatives I’ve seen in the mostly positive Amazon reviews is the loudness of the bass speaker or lack thereof. As it is wireless, I was able to place it very close to where I normally sit on the couch. I agree that the volume of the subwoofer isn’t the loudest. That said, you do really notice the difference when it is switched off, especially when watching a blockbuster such as X-Men: Apocalypse or my current go-to with my new favourite toy… Guardian of the Galaxy. I loved the soundtrack before, but more so much more now.
So I would personally say the sound is balanced for the most part, though I’d like more control over the bass to crank it up, especially at low volumes. I’ve found that setting the bass to 4 and the treble to 0 gives the best balance and gives the subwoofer an opportunity to shine. The best way to really realise the impact is to watch 5 minutes of a film switched off and then the same 5 minutes with it on. The earth won’t rumble at lower volumes but you notice it. If you’re looking for a subwoofer that will rattle your bones and annoy your neighbours, then look elsewhere, but I like the rich sound that it adds to the soundbar. Oh, and the wireless range appears to be about 3 meters.
Plenty of volume: Better sound quality can sound louder by default, in part because you notice more of the sounds. However with 150w in the tank, it has plenty to keep you happy and your neighbours less so. To put this into perspective I rarely go above 5 or 6 and this bad boy goes all the way up to 32. Something I can’t wait to try once the family are finally out of the house together at the same time, if only for a few precious moments. What is really positive is that it should be more than loud enough at 20, with plenty of headroom to avoid distribution.
Optical out: Pretty redundant for me thanks to ARC, but for those who have the need, it’s there, whether for the TV or for that dusty CD player.
Bluetooth: I’m yet to try this, but Bluetooth 3.0, whilst it will do the job, it is way out of date, so seems like an odd choice, but likely to keep the costs down.
AUX in/RCA in: Seems pretty redundant until I remembered that my record player should be given a go. I’ll update this review when I’ve given this and the Bluetooth a whirl.
USB: It supports mp3 and other formats. I can’t think of a use case for me using it to be honest, but others might.
Decent remote: Now the settings have been tweaked, this slightly longer Fire Stick copy is now safely in a draw, but it is pleasing and responsive, very similar to an Amazon Fire Stick remote.
Quality construction: For the most part it feels like a quality product and feels more expensive than it is, the size is also perfect for our 49inch TV and whilst there is a reflection from the top of the soundbar, we have noticed it at all, that will, of course, depend on where you place it. The black version looks the part in front of the TV. Perhaps, I should have considered the white one for when I finally put the TV on the wall. However, the least premium part is the right handside of the soundbar which houses the buttons. Whilst the buttons feel solid and clicky, the panel and buttons are a bit too shiny and cheap looking. Again this soundbar is only £79.99, so I’m not complaining as it’s also not in view. It is however a bit of a dust catcher, with it needing dusting after only a couple of weeks and you know we are starting to nitpick when we’re talking about dusting.
No Dolby or DTS: Yeah, I would have liked Dobly or DTS, but I’d also like a Ferrari and you’re not going to get either for £79.99.
A better watching experience: One major side effect of the new soundbar is my kids’ insistence of watching Moana and Trolls World Tour. I enjoyed them the first couple of times (if I’m being honest). But you have been warned…
What I didn’t like. I hate to say it but in 2021, please don’t send us every cable under the sun. It’s likely that no one will ever need a standard HDMI cable ever again. The optical cable is more niche, so I’m okay with that at a push. I’d rather that Majority made a few extra quid for making an excellent product and let us use the leads we already have at home or let us purchase the ones we need ourselves. If they don’t want to make a bit of extra cash, then they are welcome to plant another tree. YES, the main gripe with the product is that they give you too many things. That feels so 2021.
Another minor thing is the lack of presets. There are voice and movie presets which both sound different enough to be useful. However, there is also ADJ and I have no idea what that means or what difference it is supposed to make, but it does sound good nonetheless.
So, if you’re looking for a low-cost way of drastically improving your TV sound. Just manage your expectations, double-check it does everything you’d want and remind yourself every time you turn Netflix and hear that satisfying Netflix ‘da dig’ that it only costs £79.99 (sometimes a bit less if you’re lucky) The Majority K2 is an amazing bargain and it would still feel like a bargain even if the price was £99.99.
Buy the Majority K2 2.1 soundbar on Amazon.
Majority K2 Soundbar Review
Double-check it does everything that you’d want and remind yourself every time you turn Netflix and hear that satisfying Netflix ‘da dig’ that it only costs £79.99 (sometimes a bit less if you’re lucky) The Majority K2 is an amazing sounding bargain and it would still feel like a bargain even if the price was £99.99. If it came with a bit more control over the bass I would have easily given it 5 stars.