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JBL Bar 5.0 MultiBeam review

The JBL Bar 5.0 MultiBeam is a compact, Dolby Atmos soundbar filled to the brim with features.

Our rating 
4.0 out of 5 star rating 4.0
£349
JBL 5.0 MultiBeam review

Our review

The JBL Bar 5.0 MultiBeam is a compact soundbar delivering full, well-balanced sound that's designed to suit most TV set-up needs.
Pros: Sleek and simple design
Compact size 
Full, well-balanced sound thanks to Dolby Atmos
Works with Google Assistant and Alexa
Cons: No app

JBL is a brand dedicated to manufacturing audio equipment, covering everything from soundbars and smart speakers to headphones and wireless earbuds.

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Having been released in April 2021, the JBL Bar 5.0 MultiBeam is the latest soundbar to be added to JBL’s line-up. Looking to compete in the crowded compact soundbar market, this JBL soundbar measures just 70cm long.

But does its small size mean it lacks features? The simple answer is no. JBL has done their best to fill the soundbar with features including a built-in subwoofer, Dolby Atmos and voice control via Alexa.

All of which sounds great on paper, so we put the soundbar to the test in this JBL Bar 5.0 MultiBeam review.

To see how other models compare, read our Sonos Arc review and Yamaha YAS-209 review. Or, head straight to our best soundbar round-up.

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JBL Bar 5.0 MultiBeam review: summary

With its classic and rather simplistic design, it would be easy to expect very little from the JBL Bar 5.0 MultiBeam. But, you’d be wrong to do so. Despite its compact size, the soundbar from JBL has a lot going for it. Featuring and a built-in subwoofer, Dolby Atmos and MultiBeam Surround technology, the soundbar creates room-filling sound that is well-balanced and rich. It works with Google Assistant and Alexa giving you a choice on what virtual assistant you want to use, and you can connect to Alexa compatible devices. If you want a fuss-free Dolby Atmos soundbar, the JBL Bar 5.0 MultiBeam is a solid option.

Price: The JBL Bar 5.0 MultiBeam is available for £349 from JBL itself and retailers such as Amazon, AO and Currys.

Key features:

  • Built-in subwoofer
  • Five built-in speakers with Dolby Atmos and MultiBeam Surround technology
  • Works with Google Assistant and Alexa
  • Built-in Chromecast

Pros:

  • Sleek and simple design
  • Compact size
  • Full, well-balanced sound thanks to Dolby Atmos
  • Works with Google Assistant and Alexa

Cons:

  • No app

What is JBL Bar 5.0 MultiBeam?

The JBL Bar 5.0 MultiBeam is a compact, all-in-one Dolby Atmos soundbar. Released in April 2021, the JBL Bar 5.0 MultiBeam is one of two all-in-one soundbars made by the brand. At £349, it is the more premium offering of the two, with the JBL 2.0 soundbar priced at a more affordable £99.

What does JBL Bar 5.0 MultiBeam do?

JBL has done their best to fill the JBL Bar 5.0 MultiBeam with a great range of features. Rather than a device, the subwoofer is built into the soundbar and works with Dolby Atmos and JBL’s own MultiBeam Surround technology to create well-balanced, room-filling sound.

  • Built-in subwoofer
  • Five built-in speakers with Dolby Atmos and MultiBeam Surround technology
  • Works with Google Assistant and Alexa
  • Built-in Chromecast

How much is JBL Bar 5.0 MultiBeam?

The JBL Bar 5.0 MultiBeam soundbar is available for £349 from JBL itself and retailers such as Amazon, AO and Currys.

Is JBL Bar 5.0 MultiBeam good value for money?

If you have a limited budget, there are definitely cheaper soundbars like the Roku Streambar available that will make less of a dent in your wallet. At £349, the JBL Bar 5.0 MultiBeam is more of an investment, but you are getting a good range of features for that price. Features like Dolby Atmos, voice control via Alexa or Google Assistant and the inclusion of a built-in subwoofer will all contribute to that slightly higher price point. Considering the amount and quality of the features, the JBL Bar 5.0 MultiBeam is good value for money.

JBL Bar 5.0 MultiBeam design

JBL MulitBeam soundbar review

The sleek yet simple design means that the soundbar should fit into most TV set-ups without feeling like an eye-sore. Available in a black matte finish only, the JBL Bar 5.0 MultiBeam only has four buttons on the soundbar itself – found on the top of the device. This is where you’ll find power and volume buttons.

The soundbar comes with a remote, too. It is equally simplistic with only seven buttons, including controls for HDMI, Bluetooth and Dolby Atmos, along with mute and volume buttons.

  • Style: The soundbar has a classic and relatively simple design. Rectangular in shape, the soundbar has curved edges and a speaker grate that wraps around three of the four sides of the soundbar.
  • Robustness: The rounded finish of the JBL Bar 5.0 MultiBeam makes the soundbar feel well-made. It feels solid but is easy enough for a single person to manoeuvre.
  • Size: The JBL Bar 5.0 MultiBeam measures 6cm tall, 70cm long and 10cm wide.

JBL Bar 5.0 MultiBeam sound quality

JBL soundbar review

The JBL Bar 5.0 MultiBeam has five built-in speakers working with Dolby Atmos and MultiBeam Surround technology. Designed to give a 3D feel to the sound, these two bits of tech work well to ensure any audio does not feel one-directional. For extra oomph, the soundbar also features a built-in subwoofer that does a good job at adding some additional bass to make the audio feel a little more room-filling. The combined result is TV, film and game audio that feels rich and well-balanced.

Using Bluetooth, built-in Chromecast or Apple AirPlay 2, you can also easily stream music from a smartphone or tablet. The volume range is pretty impressive, too, and we rarely raised it above the first 10% to fill a medium-sized room.

JBL Bar 5.0 MultiBeam set-up: how easy is it to use?

JBL soundbar review

Inside the box of the JBL Bar 5.0 MultiBeam is everything you need to set it up. Supplied with the soundbar is a power cable, HDMI cable, remote and AAA batteries (for the remote), along with mounts and screws if you want to put it up on the wall. If you aren’t mounting the soundbar, the JBL Bar 5.0 MultiBeam should take less than 10 minutes to unbox and set up.

There is no accompanying JBL app that you need, but you will need to download the Amazon Alexa app if you want to connect an Amazon Echo device or take full advantage of voice control. Once Wi-Fi is set up, you add the JBL soundbar to your list of Amazon devices. This is done by scanning the barcode on the back of the soundbar. Once complete, you’ll then be able to set up other Alexa features such as Multi-Room Music so that you can stream music over multiple speakers at the same time.

Our verdict: should you buy the JBL Bar 5.0 MultiBeam?

Despite its rather simple design, the JBL Bar 5.0 MultiBeam has a lot going for it. First, it’s compact with a classic design, making it easy to slot into any TV set-up. It even comes with screws and mounts if you’d prefer to put it on the wall. For less than £350, you also get some good additional features. The soundbar works with Alexa and Google Assistant and has Chromecast built-in.

That doesn’t mean the basics aren’t delivered, too. For the price (and the size), the sound quality of the JBL Bar 5.0 MultiBeam is superb. Featuring Dolby Atmos, JBL’s MultiBeam Surround technology and a built-in subwoofer, the soundbar produces loud, room-filling audio that sounds identical throughout the room. This mid-range soundbar is a great option for anyone looking for a no-fuss all-in-one soundbar that delivers more than the basics.

Our rating:

Design: 4/5

Sound quality: 5/5

Ease of set-up: 4/5

Value for money: 4/5

Overall rating: 4/5

Where to buy JBL Bar 5.0 MultiBeam

The JBL Bar 5.0 MultiBeam soundbar is available at a number of UK retailers.

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