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Looking for a cheap way to upgrade your TV audio? This TCL soundbar is it.
The TCL TS6100 soundbar may not be revolutionary but it's a solid option for anyone looking for an affordable way to upgrade their TV audio.
Upgrading your TV set-up can get expensive quickly. At the more premium end, soundbars can easily go over the £1,000 mark and that's before you invest in accompanying surround sound systems.
But not everyone wants, or can afford, to be spending these huge amounts of money. So we put the TCL TS6100 soundbar to the test to see what the £60 device had to offer.
It is easily one of the best priced soundbars on the market; but are you sacrificing quality at this price? In this TCL TS6100 soundbar review, we cover sound quality, design and set-up to showcase if the soundbar really is brilliant value for money or if it is better splashing a bit more cash.
The TCL TS6100 is a solid option if you're looking for a cheap and cheerful soundbar. For £59, you don't get anything too sophisticated but we were pleasantly surprised by the sound quality. You don't get a whole load of bass but, with the help of Dolby Digital, the audio is well-balanced and speech is crisp and clear. The TCL TS6100 soundbar isn't designed to fill a massive cinema room, although it has a pretty impressive volume range, but offers a cheap way of upgrading your TV set-up beyond TV-only audio.
Price: The TCL TS6100 soundbar costs £59 and is available at a number of UK retailers including AO.
The TCL TS6100 is an affordable soundbar with Dolby Digital audio processing. The device is an all-in-one soundbar so doesn't come with an external subwoofer and has two in-built speakers. There's no voice control via AI assistants like Alexa, but Bluetooth does allow you to stream music and other audio through the soundbar. At £59, the TCL TS6100 soundbar is one of the cheapest ways to upgrade your TV's audio.
This TCL soundbar is pretty simplistic but that is to be expected when it costs less than £60. The small soundbar is supplied on its own without a subwoofer. Instead, the two built-in speakers work with Dolby Sound Technology to provide rich audio, which it does relatively well.
The TCL TS6100 soundbar costs £59 and is available at a number of UK retailers including AO.
The TCL TS6100 soundbar is brilliant value for money. It doesn't offer a lot of features but what is there is done well. For less than £60, you get a soundbar with two built-in speakers that work with Dolby Digital to produce good quality sound. It isn't class-leading but that is expected for the price. Set-up is simple, Bluetooth allows you to wirelessly play music and the design is compact and unobtrusive so the soundbar easily slots under the TV. If you're looking for a cheap soundbar that is a vast improvement on TV-only audio, the TCL TS6100 soundbar is it.
Available in black only, the TCL TS6100 is a long, slender but still relatively compact soundbar with a curved design. The simplistic soundbar is accompanied by an equally simplistic remote. Despite only nine buttons, the remote has all the key controls including for Bluetooth, navigation buttons and to switch between audio modes for movies, music and TV. If you prefer, there are also touch buttons on the top of the soundbar including a power button, volume controls and for Bluetooth.
We were pleasantly surprised with the sound quality of this TCL soundbar. Films, TV shows and speech sound great thanks to the Dolby Digital audio processing. Music is definitely where the cracks show a little. The quality is OK but it can sound a little tinny on occasion.
It also has a great volume range and can go impressively loud. The audio is fairly directional but we found it will easily fill the small and medium rooms it is designed for. It's definitely not the surround sound experience you get with the likes of the Sonos Arc, but the TCL TS6100 soundbar is also more than £700 cheaper.
One benefit of the TCL TS6100's affordable price point is that everything about the soundbar is simple. This makes it incredibly user-friendly. Setting it up takes five minutes maximum and it is literally a case of plugging it into the HDMI port in the back of the TV. It is worth noting, though, that a HDMI cable is not included in the box so you will need to buy one separately if you don't have a spare.
Beyond this initial set-up, the only other decision to make is whether you want to mount the soundbar. Included in the box is a mount and screws so you can put it up on the wall straight from the box. If you'd rather not mount it, it is short enough to sit on a TV stand under the TV without getting in the way of the IR receiver.
One small quirk of the TCL TS6100 is that if the TV is paused for too long, the soundbar will turn off and won't automatically switch back on when you press play. Instead, you have to turn the soundbar back on using the remote.
A cheap, all-in-one soundbar is a great way of upgrading your TV's audio without spending a lot of money or adding too much extra clutter to your TV set-up. But will a cheap soundbar really make a difference? The quick answer is yes.
There is a noticeable difference between the TCL TS6100 soundbar and TV-only audio. Background noises that were unintelligible before are able to be heard easily. This gives a better and more well-rounded TV experience. In the case of this TCL soundbar, it can also go considerably louder than most TVs.
If you're looking for a cheap and simple device to upgrade your TV audio, the TCL TS6100 soundbar is it. It is compact enough that it won't take up loads of room and the set-up is simple and user-friendly. The sound quality goes way beyond what you'd expect for its £59 price tag. You don't get a whole load of bass but, with the help of Dolby Digital, the audio is well-balanced and speech is crisp and clear. The TCL TS6100 soundbar isn't designed to fill a massive cinema room, despite it's good volume range, but it's definitely one of the best ways of upgrading your TV set-up beyond TV-only audio at an affordable price.
Sound quality: 3/5
Ease of set-up: 3/5
Value for money: 5/5
The TCL TS6100 soundbar is on sale at various UK retailers including AO.