Monoprice SB-300 Soundbar Review: An ideal soundbar for the apartment

The Monoprice SB-300 soundbar offers Dolby Atmos compatibility and good sound, for a simplified home theater setup.

Sometimes simple is best, especially when adding a home theater speaker system to your home or office. The Monoprice SB-300 soundbar brings Dolby Atmos support to any TV setup, without breaking the bank.

The built-in speakers of most modern TVs are useful, but they typically lack sound quality or volume, so customers are forced to find an external solution. Home theater speaker systems can range from under a hundred dollars to thousands of dollars, depending on your needs.

We have found that the Monoprice SB-300 is the perfect choice for anyone looking to add a speaker to their apartment or bedroom. Since the SB-300 does not have a separate subwoofer, it is suitable for the apartment and simplifies wiring and setup.


The buttons on the device don't offer much control

The buttons on the device don’t offer much control

The SB-300 is an unassuming soundbar with no sleek curves or bright flashing lights, and that’s a good thing. The design will blend in with most home theater setups and sit under the TV without being a distraction.

The soundbar is constructed entirely of plastic and uses an LED behind the speaker grille to display information. There are no flashing lights or bright displays, which minimizes the possibility of distracting attention from the content on the screen.

A dimmer button on the remote can be used to adjust the brightness levels of the display and there is a setting that turns the display off completely.

Connections and controls

There are four audio options for the soundbar: Voice, Sports, Movie, Music. These can be changed using the included remote control.

There is no “standard” mode that doesn’t do any processing, so for most of the content we use Film as the default. Additionally, the need for the remote to manually change sound modes makes for a slightly cluttered experience.

The soundbar itself has power, mute and volume buttons for quick access to essential controls. There is also an input control and a Bluetooth pairing button on the top of the soundbar.

There are several connection options for the SB-300

There are several connection options for the SB-300

One might expect a speaker in this price range to be limited in its choice of inputs, but the SB-300 has plenty of options. There are two HDMI-in ports, coaxial, optical, a 3.5mm audio jack and a USB-A port.

Most users will benefit from the HDMI port, but the other port options for previous configurations make this speaker versatile. Additionally, the two HDMI 2.0 ports could help make it easier to connect devices like Apple TV or Playstation if your TV has a limited number of HDMI inputs available.

The USB-A port allows external storage drives or MP3 players to connect directly to the speaker. Smartphones or computers can take advantage of the 3.5mm jack or Bluetooth.

The SB-300 is a 2.1 speaker system, which means it has two speakers in stereo and a woofer used for bass. Typically, speakers in this price range include an external subwoofer, but we found that the soundbar alone provides enough bass.

That said, we would prefer an external subwoofer at this price as a dedicated subwoofer would produce better bass on its own than the soundbar.

Using the Monoprice SB-300 soundbar

We tested the soundbar using the HDMI eARC connection to our Sony TV. The media player in use was an Apple TV 4K connected directly to the Sony TV input.

Since the soundbar was connected via HDMI eARC, we could control the volume using the Apple TV remote and the iPhone Remote app without any additional setup. This also means that the iPhone can control the soundbar volume while displaying the widget playing on the lock screen.

The Monoprice SB-300 is a good soundbar for low budget homes

The Monoprice SB-300 is a good soundbar for low budget homes

The maximum speaker volume was loud enough to be audible in noisy environments, but not so loud as to distort the audio. However, running a noisy fan or nearby air conditioner may be enough to muffle the speaker at any volume except the loudest.

We tested various media on the soundbar and everything came out clear and loud without any problems. Some small speakers have issues with dynamic audio, but the SB-300 may keep voices and music separate and distinct.

Movies encoded with surround sound or Dolby Atmos worked great despite the 2 speaker soundbar. While it can decode Dolby Atmos, it uses this data to try to simulate surround sound in a stereo environment.

The simulated surround effect is evident and not unwelcome. The soundbar was able to make sounds appear “outside” the speaker enclosure using clever audio tricks.

Should you buy the SB-300 soundbar?

We can’t recommend it enough for anyone looking for a soundbar to fit into their small apartment or bedroom. The speaker is very loud and doesn’t produce enough bass to annoy the neighbors.

However, if you live in a noisy environment, have constant fan noise or an A / C unit near the TV, you may want to find a louder speaker. We found that the louder volume could barely overcome the noise of an old air conditioner nearby.

The soundbar comes with everything you need in the box, even wall mounting brackets. For a soundbar under $ 150, we believe you’ll be happy with the audio quality and easy setup.

  • Able to play at maximum volume without distortion
  • Excellent sound separation for a surround effect
  • Multiple input options for maximum compatibility
  • No external subwoofer despite the price
  • Sound modes lack customization or control
  • It might be louder at maximum volume

Rating: 4 out of 5

Where to buy the Monoprice SB-300 soundbar

The Monoprice SB-300 soundbar is available on the Monoprice website for $ 179.99.