Sony HT-Z9F Review (3.1 CH Soundbar)

Sony HT-Z9F Review













  • Premium, durable look and feel.
  • Lots of connectivity and audio format options.
  • Great dialogue-handling.


  • Mediocre job at handling Atmos content due to lack of speakers.
  • No treble or bass adjustment options; EQ presets only.

Soundbars ended up consistently believed that the centre ground involving your dreadful sound performance which we’ve to endure out of our amazing apartment TVs along with also a fullblown surround sound installation. Ofcourse in most instances certain constraints stop us from having the capacity to possess devoted speakers round the space it really be limiting or cost distance accordingly within this event a soundbar may be your next most useful point. Ofcourse the largest problem before today was encircle operation because most soundbars shortage encompass speakers and also this got even worse with the advent of Dolby Atmos and DTS:X because added speakers had been desired as a way to build the over-head results. When attempting to bridge this gap from hardware that there is just a single of the ways potential, also which has been virtualization.

Virtual encircle technology looks properly used alot in soundbars with combined outcomes. Even though many models appear to make use of this being an extra characteristic the soundbar we’ll likely be reviewing now from Sony employs this as truly one of their machine’s center purposes so as to supply an immersive experience. However, how true do this digital technology be in regards in a restricted number of speakers also can that soundbar handles to build realistic environment and over-head results? Read our Sony HT-Z9F review to learn.

Style and design, Inputs and Attributes

Even the Sony HT-Z9F can be really a 3.1 channels soundbar whilst the most important unit is sold with 3 chief channels including left,centre and while the added wireless sub-woofer included at the package deal really helps lots with all the frequencies that are low. Having a dimension of 39-3/8″ × 2-5/8″ × 4″ (100 cm x 64 mm x 99 mm) and pounds of 17 pound 14 ounce (8.1 kg) the device may sit under many TV stands and panels.

Sony has maintained the aesthetics at rather substantial degrees far too. Having a piano-lacquered high plate and also exactly what sounds just like a brushed aluminum foundation that the chassis is made and pairs fine with all the perforated, charcoal grey metallic grille which attaches on the home device. It isn’t the most notable premium quality we’ve found not too long ago on various different soundbars . however, it truly is among those far better kinds.

One other characteristic of it has superior structure could be that the pressure-sensitive controller switches which can be placed towards the upper middle of this machine. Included in these are electrical power, Input, blue tooth, tunes support and quantity controllers even though still being worry sensitive and painful tends to make the soundbar search nicer a single draw back is the fact that it’s consistently tough to discover them from the darkened.

At front involving both rear and right centre drivers we all see front panel exhibit with all the blue tooth index being set about it has left and also the handheld remote controller detector about it really is ideal. With all the grille on, the exhibit will not look nearly as fantastic as with no however this really is normal in all soundbars hence no complaints .


What grabbed our interest was that Sony has also contained an IR repeater in the rear part of the system. Which usually means that in case the soundbar is blocking the IR detector of one’s television fear less the soundbar will relay the sign into it is rear and also into it itself which makes matters much easier.

The absolute most curious facet of the device is the fact that it is ranked because of 7.1.2 channels Dolby Atmos empowered soundbar but appearing underneath the grid people just detect about three drivers to its abandoned, right and centre channels. You can find not any upfiring motorists which we had seen within certain other Atmos soundbars which ensures that inorder to replicate the Atmos impacts the Sony HT-Z9F could need to be dependent on engineering technology. How powerful it really is of course, should it surely succeeds to make precisely the exact same immersion of being given or upfiring speakers we’ll explore a little this report.

Together with all the soundbar we additionally receive yourself a wireless sub-woofer which stands only in excess of 15 inches deep and high, and only under 8 inches large. It’s a slick bass jack at front and also in overall is as it’d go undetected in the majority of sound rooms. And if it has appearance might possibly not be much it’s going to soon be intriguing to learn the way that it plays which can be exactly what things the absolute most.


Needless all vents are at the trunk once we all detect them piled together within a recess whereas the positioning is quite exceptional since you are able to observe at the photograph with all both HDMI vents together side all the Ethernet jack staying in an angle when compared with the most important component’s figure. We suppose that this is made blatantly to produce relations simpler when wall-mounting the soundbar however we still wonder just how much difference that this might create.

The machine is sold with two HDMI inputs and one HDMI output signal which likewise supports ARC. They all are all HDCP 2.2 harmonious which signifies that they pass-through 4K, HDR 10, Dolby eyesight, HLG and Broad Colour Gamut. There’s likewise an optical inputsignal, a 3.5millimeter analogue sound minijack input and also a USB interface you may utilize to stream sound in the USB stick or outside storage.

This machine includes integral WiFi in addition to Bluetooth service which you may utilize to set some bluetooth-enabled headphones for listening. The wi fi signal was so strong without undergone any disconnections throughout our screening.

There are 3 principal ways you may restrain the Sony HT-Z9F. In the event you would rather the maximum timeless one afterward a included remote provides you with all of the primary functions you will be needing. The distant itself is not anything special since Sony has made us utilized in supplying simple distant layouts for the majority of these own equipment. It’s a quite easy and uninteresting appearance but it really is buttons and functional positioning is quite excellent. Regrettably no back-light available the following.


The 2nd alternative is touse Sony songs Center Program with which you may not just restrain the soundbar but in addition join many encouraged speakers about your home and flow music so as to produce your favorite multi-room atmosphere.

Last but most certainly not least there are additional assistance for voice get a handle on in the event that you’re far more tech informed which the normal user. Sony has included the Alexa and Google Assistant voice controllers nevertheless as a way to work with some one of them you may be needing the proper speaker apparatus whilst the Sony HT-Z9F lacks all types of builtin mike range that could allow it to sound voice controller all set. For those who might have an Echo Dot or even Google property apparatus all around your household then you’re prepared togo.

Even the soundbar supports all kinds of sound formats from Dolby Digital and DTS into Dolby TrueHD along with dtshd Master sound all of the solution into this absolute most high level Dolby Atmos along with DTS:X rendering it prospective evidence to most now available kinds of sound.

The most important component comprises the soundbar along with also the sub-woofer for establishing a 3.1 installation however, also the fantastic point about that version is the fact that it grants you the capacity to enlarge into an entire encompass 5.1 technique with the addition of some of back speakers (SA-Z9R). The speakers hook up with the primary unit like the subwoofer and you also simply require an electric socket close to electricity up them. Ofcourse as you’ve got to get them independently this usually means that whenever you choose the complete 5.1 installation the fee goes much greater. This really is just a huge characteristic and presents amazing flexibility based upon your own budget and room limits.

Sony has built this specific particular unit having a couple supplemental characteristics that people have been convinced most men and women would love. As such there clearly was Chromecast service which permits you to to stream tunes into the soundbar out of a tablet computer or smartphone.


Additionally there’s assistance for highresolution Audio such as highres FLAC 192kHz 24bit and also DSD in the event you’d like however when playing high-resolution files that the soundbar is sold with Sony’s DSEE HX up-scaler that’s assumed to boost the sound to nearly large res caliber. We experimented with this using a couple monitors even though you will find always a couple instances it felt just like any advancement has been there normally do not anticipate any significant gap.

Overall performance

It might be considered a bit confusing for a thus we will need to clear some reasons for having the digital technologies which have all the Sony HT-Z9F. In the crux of the machine we get that the Vertical Audio motor which can be Sony’s proprietary digital technology that’s supplemented with the Vertical S up-mixer. From the distant Sony has set the S button at the center location that toggles that the up-mixer on / away. Even the up-mixer ought to be properly used specially whenever you will find additional non invasive Dolby Atmos monitors as if Atmos will be discovered the upmixer has been it.

Even the Sony HT-Z9F comes with 7 various DSP possibilities which have Cinema, Music, sport, information, activity, typical and vehicle audio. Of course the automobile choice will switch into a particular processing predicated upon this material whereas most of one different are intended to make an even more striking effect to his or her content that is specified. In spite of the fact that it really is wonderful to decide to try all of them and you also might locate a few for your liking that you need to prefer using this conventional style because it’s the one which playbacks the sound together with just as little processing as you can as well as can be nearer to the way it had been meant to become listened.

First installation may perhaps not be any much easier even for some people who have no wisdom together with sound tools. After linking both soundbar along with sub-woofer to an energy socket we had a HDMI cable which runs out of the machine into the television and switched them got us into a onscreen manual that required us stepbystep during the preliminary installation. It supported the speakers which had attached wirelessly, even once it joined to your wireless router to get world wide web and ultimately it requested us to empower Chromecast some thing you may bypass and empower after in the event that you’d like. And that is it.


1 thing which we found was while some other soundbars offer you some sort of computerized sound calibration technique there is not one in that particular one thus many calibrations must be accomplished by hand some thing which individuals surely like however many can discover that it’s somewhat annoying. From the complex menu you may discover configurations to correct the exact distance of the soundbar and also sub-woofer from the settee in addition to change the respective speaker degrees.

Motion Pictures

Moving to your picture analyzing we chose up our favourite film recently which can be protecting Private Ryan at 4K UHD which includes a remarkable Dolby Atmos sound-track. This picture really is precisely that which we want so as to learn how very good the digital environment technology is currently doing work about the Sony HT-Z9F of course whether it may reliably re create the over-head and also encircle aftereffects of such a picture.

Of course we started out our evaluation with all the launching spectacle which may be the landing of the Allied powers on Omaha beach. What’s immediately evident is the way much superior that the picture sounds out of your vanilla television audio-system. The noise feels richer with additional information being discovered as the Allied ships are approaching the beach. Even the splashes of these ocean waves onto the metallic ships felt far more tangible, the sea motors had been roaring with an increase of oomph as you’ll listen to artillery shells bursting to the rear distance further afield.

Up to now so great however the true test will come whenever the troopers reach the beach along with the sea ship doors available. The dynamics and clarity that we buy at front are very excellent. To get a 3.1 strategy front sound-stage felt quite deep and wide and also the soundbar was precise and good with all channel altering. Even the subwoofer was good-enough in bringing all of the lows with artillery shells bursting in leading part of the digital camera left our settee shake a couple days. Differentiating between your subwoofer along with also the soundbar was incredibly fine and you also will not know once usually the person ceases and one different starts off.


Let us talk a little bit concerning the Atmos consequences. Fully being promoted being a Dolby Atmos empowered soundbar you’d count on all the over-head impacts to maneuver your thoughts all of the moment, appropriate? With all the Sony HT-Z9F but there are a few feeling of over-head activity this isn’t too evident and comes about just a couple situations. And also this isn’t just a mistake with this picture even as we attempted a couple of the others to support that it too.

Even the soundbar attempts to practically produce the illusion of both over-head activity and also though a few occasions it succeeds this really is popular or miss out situation indeed. Sit nearer into this soundbar the consequence grows more noticeable however that indicates that you might need to locate a perspiration location for this as well as also your chamber might well not allow such independence of choice.

The 2nd thing that we taken notice of has been that there isn’t much depth at the sound stage supporting us. In the event you opt to pick the back speakers afterward that challenge is always solved however since we desired to take to the method by which a soundbar acts with people we observed it neglects to supply exactly the environment effects since we’d expect it’d. There’s a feeling of this activity staying nearer to people compared to additional non invasive Dolby Atmos empowered soundbars but however it can’t provide you with the type of immersion which you’d possess with genuine surround speakers.

Final our picture analyzing we’d love to mention the soundbar can be just a significant advancement over all types of television music platform is present now. It provides a exact extensive front sound stage whenever it really is digital technologies attempt and push immersion over and supporting our screening location but using maybe not really a exact clear outcome. You’re certainly going to really feel as if you listen to noises from some other places aside from the leading however do not anticipate the outcomes that you want out of an actual Dolby Atmos platform with speakers that are dedicated.


Then we proceeded onto our new music examining and then here the Sony HT-Z9F fared excellent in the event that you regard the components limits of this machine. Analyzing a couple FLAC tunes monitors throughout the USB interface we have extremely sharp vocals plus a exact balanced midrange. Sound parting was great enough with all the soundbar that provides great spatial comprehension. Even the sub-woofer even felt at home throughout our pictures analyzing that it absolutely was competent to provide a commendable overall performance delivering each of the needed bass of their music monitors.


Soundbars possess general some components constraints which arise from your hardware that they must make use of but so the Sony HT-Z9F was able to supply some exact decent music operation also it’s going to soon be a fantastic choice for all those trying to find an all-purpose solution to his or her family place.


Sony has built some fairly huge statements together with all the Sony HT-Z9F and though the machine supplies pretty excellent effectiveness for exactly what it can be, it can not offer you the total Dolby Atmos encounter which we’d really like.

However on the side Sony has made a fantastic high quality soundbar that certainly frees the sound immersion out of that which the very simple television audio-system may provide, but it truly is simple to set up and presents assistance for most sound monitors for example Dolby Atmos along with DTS:X, also has lots of characteristics that’ll suit all users also may be enlarged to the entire 5.1 surround platform. In the middle of it has operation is Sony’s Vertical Audio motor, supplemented with the Vertical S up-mixer sufficient reason for the accession of Dolby’s very own Atmos digital processing that the soundbar supplies the whole digital technology package deal.


However, whilst the soundbar asserts a-lot it neglects to send at its own important aspect. Being fully a Dolby Atmos bar usually means it may produce the desired over-head results however that isn’t the case . And though the digital technology which accompanies the machine absolutely provides a little bit of elevation into the sound-stage we have never felt utterly encircled with it made a true big difference to the practical experience. Exactly the exact same might be said about it has setting capacities as minus the surround speakers the majority of the thickness driving us is misplaced. Ultimately the cost even to your center 3.1 device can be somewhat high since we’ve experienced a number of different soundbars with much lesser price offering commendable consequences too.

If a soundbar using 3.1 channels asserts to offer you a 7.1.2 channels immersion you always need to maintain your anticipations check. Digital technology like it can be it could not reliably mimic an actual surround platform and also the Sony HT-Z9F can be really a quality instance. It truly is maybe not it’s really a poor version, to the other hand to a 3.1 soundbar it includes very excellent noise . however, it truly is Sony’s asserts which produces expectations high. When it had been promoted for an easy 3.1 technique afterward we’d have the ability to estimate it otherwise since it offers a much superior experience compared to any television sound platform may provide.

And at the long run that really is the method that you really should observe this version. As being a 3.1 platform that may present much greater than that which your own television may plus it may expand to the entire 5.1 process in the event you put in the back speakers. As such the Sony HT-Z9F absolutely deserves some thought.

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