Best Home Theater in a Box under $500 in 2018 – Reviews & Buyer’s Guide
by David Wright | October 24, 2018
When you start enjoying movies, music, and TV shows at home, it is time to consider buying a home theater system. Due to all the advanced tech features, you may think they are out of your range. But, there is good news for you because you can access the best quality in image and video when you buy the best home theater in a box under $500.
There are many features available for the home theaters with the price below $500. If you’re in a hurry, we’ll say right away that our favorite equipment is the Pioneer 5.1 Home Theater System HTP-074. Why is it the best?
Firstly, it supports all Dolby versions, and the Advanced Sound Retriever Technology restores output of compressed audio. Its 5.1 channel AV receiver includes wireless technology. You can watch Blu-ray discs, broadcast, streaming and games.
As it is ready for the next generation video standard HDR, you can be sure you will have more life-like and more brighten images. But, you still have the chance to evaluate more options because we included 4 more models with amazing features. Keep reading and find your best home theater under $500.
Best Home Theater in a Box under $500 – our list:
|Pioneer 5.1 Home Theater System HTP-074||100 watts|
|Yamaha YHT-4930UBL 5.1||145 watts|
|Onkyo HT-S3900 5.2||120 watts|
|Energy 5.1 Take Classic||100 watts|
|Yamaha YHT-3920UBL 5.1||100 watts|
1. Pioneer 5.1 Home Theater System HTP-074 – The Best Overall
The sound of this Pioneer system stands out. It supports Dolby TrueHD/Dolby Digital and Dolby Pro Logic which allow you to enjoy the analogic and digital material. It is complemented with a 5.1. channel AV receiver with Bluetooth.
All you need to do is connect a Blu-ray or DVD player, and you will have all the high-definition entertainment you want. A sound retriever also let you restore compressed audio from MP3 and other sources. You can enjoy premium videos as you can easily connect compatible devices and they will pass through 4K/60p/4:4:4.
With the ECO Mode, you can save energy while still enjoying a high-quality sound.
Pros and Cons
You can connect Xbox, Wii, Blue-ray, and DVD
It offers next-generation video standard (HDR) to improve the images
Includes 5 channels AV receiver
It has Bluetooth wireless technology
The image quality may vary according to the TV
This Yamaha Home Theater equipment offers everything to get the most optimized images and sound. Firstly, the combination of YPAO sound optimization along with a 100-Watt powered subwoofer and an extra Bass technology provide an incredible sound balance. With YPAO sound optimization you get analysis and adjustment of the room acoustic.
You can use it with rear speakers or install 5 speakers at the front and still enjoy the best quality. It is compatible with Bluetooth, and you can also enjoy music from your smartphone and other devices. Images are enhanced through the combination of Dolby Vision and Hybrid Log-Gamma technology to provide the highest quality with great contrast and bright colors.
Pros and Cons
Speakers are finished in a beautiful black gloss
It is perfect for watching movies and listening to music as the receiver includes several DSP modes
YPAO sound optimization
The size of the equipment is better for medium/large rooms
3. Onkyo HT-S3900 5.2 – The Best for Small Spaces
Despite having little space available to install your Home Theater in a Box, it is still possible to enjoy the best quality with this equipment. Its system comprises a six-piece speaker system that suits perfectly in small rooms. The combination of this system with an explosive Bass in the subwoofer provides an authentic surround for all your space.
You can play anything from your smartphone, laptop or PC because it includes Bluetooth wireless technology. The receiver can decode the most widely used soundtracks formats for Blu-ray Disc. The HDMI terminals allow you to play the last video formats and there is an audio return channel (ARC) for amplifying TV broadcasts.
This equipment also features analog amps that control the power and enhance music, videos, and video games.
Pros and Cons
It is possible to enjoy music via USB input
Compact speaker system
Easy connection and installation
Color-coded speaker cables included
The Bluetooth signal doesn’t reach long distances
4. Energy 5.1 Take Classic – The Best Subwoofer
The Energy 5.1 stands out for its 200 Watts subwoofer that provides a unique quality of sound. It includes 4 satellite speakers and patented Ribbed Elliptical Surround. These speakers reproduce the sounds in a uniform manner which creates a smooth sound that reaches all areas of the room equally.
A center channel speaker provides centered sound and the Convergent Source Module offers low distortion, wide dispersion, and excellent performance. Music and movies feel more real than ever.
Pros and Cons
It includes integrated keyhole wall-mounts threaded inserts and rubber bumpers to ease installation anywhere
Low price with great advantages
It is suitable for small and large rooms
The finish of the speakers gets easily scratched
5. Yamaha YHT-3920UBL 5.1 – The Best Video Quality
With this Yamaha model, you will get the highest standards for HDMI with 4K video transmission. It doesn’t have degradation and fully complies with copyright protection. It includes all the Yamaha technology that comprises: Virtual Cinema Front that allows you to install the speakers at the front if the rear speaker can’t be placed; extra Bass to enhance the performance of the 100Watt subwoofer with YST technology.
The center channel and 4 surround speakers can be easily mounted in the wall.
Pros and Cons
Includes Yamaha Parametric Acoustic Optimizer (YPAO) for sound optimization
It can be wall mounted
Bluetooth for wireless music streaming
Connectors require multiple adjustments
Finding The Best Home Theater in a Box
To enjoy the benefits of the best home theater in a box under $500, it is not necessary to understand how it works. However, when you have to choose among several models, it is crucial to understand the underlying technical features.
Video and audio are the most essential features, but if you want to make your home theater to combine with your décor, you should also consider the design. The best brands offer a wide range of equipment, and they include many years of technical experience to make them work as well as they do.
To achieve the best audio, it is important to consider the subwoofer. It is designed to reproduce low bass frequencies. Most of them come with 100Watt and exceptionally they may come with 200Watts.
But the subwoofer is not the only element. The number of speakers and how you must place them to obtain the best sound is also crucial. The amount may vary from 4 to 6.
In any case, they would be fine if the surround technology works well. Dolby sound features are also important. That technology supports almost every single movie that is available in the market.
According to technological changes, there are several versions of Dolby. Therefore, if you want to make sure you can access all types of movies with good sound, make sure you include all the Dolby versions.
One important reason to buy a Home Theater in a box is the video feature. We know that images get enhanced with this type of equipment. As the technology evolves, images get better and better.
In addition to the movies, now you can enjoy your favorite games and streaming TVs such as Netflix and Amazon Prime, to name a few. When choosing the video features the most important thing to consider is the High Definition feature. That is what makes the difference, and fortunately, most of the home theater systems include this feature.
Where to Place a Subwoofer for Home Theater
Current TVs may include amazing features. However, films, TV shows, and streaming broadcasting are continuously adding new and more sophisticated elements. Home Theaters in a Box are an extraordinary way to catch up with all them.
The technology they offer, the easy way to install them, and the affordable price make them the best option. You can select the best audio and video features to enhance your experience, and you don’t need to overspend to do so.