Can Soundbars and Center Speakers Be Interchanged? Expert Opinion

As thinkers and audiophiles, we always look for a way to enhance our listening experience. However, there is a difference between a speaker system and a central speaker. While a speaker system comprises speakers, a center speaker is a speaker that sits in the middle of the room, usually next to a TV. A soundbar is a speaker system that fills a large area with high-quality audio.

So what does that mean for us? First, a center speaker would be ideal for someone who wants to enjoy their favorite music in a larger room.

Can you use a soundbar as a center channel?

The short answer is no. A soundbar can’t replace a central speaker without lowering the sound quality.

This blog post will give you more details about the differences between a center channel and a center speaker and the benefits and drawbacks of using a soundbar as a center speaker.

How can Soundbars Operate

Soundbars are not individual speakers. They are only one notable speaker. The only difference is that they are built to fill an entire room. So, a soundbar can cover an area of up to 150 square feet. You have a lot of space to listen to music or watch a movie.

Soundbars have a wide frequency range. You’ll hear low and high frequencies. So you can enjoy music and movies.

If you want the full experience, do this. Soundbars can help you control volume. The soundbar’s volume is easily adjustable.

How Center Speakers Work:

Can a Soundbar be Used as a Center Speaker? Expert Opinion

Speakers are usually placed all over a room as part of the speaker system. The name for these speakers is “surround speakers.” Each surround speaker can be connected to a power source called an amplifier. But for the best sound, it would be best to connect the surround speakers to an amplifier.

The center speaker is made up of three main parts. A woofer, a tweeter, and an amplifier make up these parts.

The woofer plays low frequencies between 20 Hz and 200 Hz and sends the sound waves in the right direction. The tweeter plays sound waves with higher frequencies, between 15 and 20 kHz, and boosts them. Lastly, the amplifier makes the sound louder by sending power to the speaker.

Soundbar is Used as a Center Speaker

Soundbar is Used as a Center Speaker

As you are well aware of the role of the soundbar, now, from my knowledge, I will explain how to use a soundbar as a center speaker in your surround system.

The amplifier is the first to hook up a soundbar with surround speakers. The amplifier is the center component of a surround system. It gets the audio signal and amplifies it. There are two types of amplifiers.

The first is low-power, and the second is high-power. Use a low-power amplifier to hear sounds at a low volume. Use a high-power amplifier to boost the room volume.

The amplifier has an output, which controls the power sent out to the speaker. Therefore, turning up the volume when you connect the surround speakers to the amplifier would be best.

Differences between Center Channel and Center Speaker

The center channel has a function similar to that of a center speaker. The center speaker sits in the middle of the room and receives the main output of the sound system. This is where most audio equipment comes in and out of your home. These speakers connect to an amplifier that sends the signal to the rest of the speakers in the system.

Use Samsung Soundbar To Desire

A center channel refers to a speaker placed near the center of a surround sound system. This means the center channel is closer to the listening area than the left and right channels. As a result, the center channel receives much less direct sound than the left and right channels.

When to use a Soundbar as a Center Speaker

A soundbar should only be used as the center speaker if you don’t care about the sound quality. You should know the soundbar’s powerful sound output if you intend to use it as your center speaker. These loud noises might bother you.

However, a few things to remember if you use the soundbar as your primary speaker. To begin with, you should not use it while the music is playing. When watching a film with friends, it’s best to keep the volume low.

Using only the soundbar as a central speaker would be best when you have quiet surroundings. Then, the background noise of your house will not affect the soundbar as much.

Advantages of using a soundbar as a Center Speaker

The advantage of using a soundbar as a center speaker is that it can create surround sound with only one speaker. You don’t need to buy another center speaker or set up extra wiring. You may listen to your favorite music or movie with the soundbar while watching a TV show with a different audio source.

You can control the volume of the soundbar and the center speaker separately. For example, you might be able to hear the voice of a person speaking while listening to music. You may also hear the person’s voice while watching a movie or TV show.

Disadvantages of using a soundbar as a Center Speaker

Disadvantages of using a soundbar as a Center Speaker

I told you throughout the blog you should not use the soundbar as a center speaker; if you do, you will have some problems. One of the main problems with this is that your soundbar can make the surround speakers not work correctly. The surround speakers will be damaged if you play music at a loud volume.

Another problem could be that the volume from your center speakers is too high. This means that the speakers in the middle will be too loud. You should consider getting a center speaker if you use a sound bar as a center speaker.

Connectivity Issues:

You can connect a soundbar to the TV in two main ways. The first way is to attach the surround speakers to the soundbar using a speaker wire. The other way is to use HDMI cables.

If you connect the surround speakers to the soundbar using speaker wire and HDMI cables, you can use the soundbar as a center speaker

In the HDMI connection, the center speakers must be connected directly to the soundbar. This is so that they can receive the audio signal.

For instance, your TV may not receive sound from the center speaker if it doesn’t have HDMI inputs. It may also not have the ability to produce high enough power levels.

The volume levels cannot be adjusted using your soundbar. Additionally, connecting your soundbar to several sources will present challenges. You must take the surround speakers off the soundbar and put them back on to change the input.

Amplification Stacking Problem:

The average home theater may have two or more soundbars. The problem is that the amplification stacking problem may make it difficult to adjust the volume level of each source. In addition, some soundbars may have a remote with volume control for each source. As a result, you can’t easily adjust the volume level of the center speaker from your soundbar. 

However, you can adjust the volume level of your television. It may also allow you to adjust the volume level of your soundbar. If your television is hooked up to your soundbar via HDMI, you may be able to adjust the soundbar’s volume level and the television. If you use HDMI, you can also connect the receiver to the TV via HDMI.

System Compatibility:

If you don’t understand system compatibility, don’t set up a soundbar with your center speaker. This might cause problems with your soundbar. If you do, your soundbar might not work correctly.

Ensure your center speaker is compatible with your soundbar before setting up the soundbar. Your center speaker and soundbar should be able to work together. However, you might be unable to use both simultaneously because it could damage some parts of your system or the whole setup.


A soundbar can produce loud sounds and be used as a central speaker. It would be best to be careful about using the soundbar as a center speaker when you have loud music playing. Loud music can easily damage the soundbars’ sensitive electronic components.


Can you use a sound bar as a speaker?

Some soundbars come with external or wireless speakers, but most are just meant for use with the soundbar.

Can I use any speaker as a center speaker?

Any speaker (except a subwoofer) will do for your center channel. Still, a horizontal rather than vertical (or square) cabinet design (like the one shown below from Aperion Audio) will provide the best possible soundstage.

What is better, surround sound or a sound bar?

Whether you should get a soundbar or a surround sound system may depend on where you live. Since soundbars are small, they are the best choice if you live in a small apartment. But surround sound setups will almost always give you a better listening experience if you have the room.

Can you use a Sonos arc as a center channel?

Using the Arc as the center channel speaker in your current setup is impossible. The Arc is designed to be used independently, directly connected to the TV, without any other equipment.

Is a soundbar better than a central speaker?

In most center speakers, one is surrounded by a circle of speakers called the “midrange. This means the audio is placed in the speaker’s center, which is why you hear the dialogue in a movie centered. You’ll want a soundbar if you’re looking for a TV that produces better sound than your old model.

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