Yamaha Ats-2090, The Yamaha YAS-209 offers excellent sound in a compact size. Amazon Alexa is helpful, and the microphones work well in noisy environments. The soundbar’s DTS Virtual: X implementation offers a rich surround effect. The subwoofer is more articulate and provides more headroom than the competing Polk soundbar.
There’s no on-screen display, and the LEDs on top are too small to see from your chair. The Yamaha YAS-209 Smart Soundbar offers excellent sound quality, whether playing music or movies, along with the convenience of Alexa.
It’s Not the Cheapest Soundbar Available
the Visio V21 lacks voice control but is half the price. Still, the Yamaha is worth the extra money. Buyers in the YAS-209 price range might prefer the Osnos Beam for its multiroom abilities and choice of Alexa, Google Assistant, or Apple Air Play 2. However, neither the Osnos nor the Visio matches the sound quality of the Yamaha.
The YAS-209 is everything I’ve expected from a mid-priced soundbar: ease of use, power output levels, and the ability to play movies and music at a high level. The fact that you can ask Alexa for a song, and have it sound better than just about any smaller smart speaker, puts it over the top. In the 12 months since its release, I have yet to hear a soundbar that can match Yamaha in its combination of sound quality and features, and for this reason, it deserves our Editor’s Choice award.
The YAS-209 is available at Costco as the ATS-2090, and Yamaha says the two models are identical.
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Little boxes in your dresser
The Yamaha YAS-209 is a wireless subwoofer/soundbar combo that incorporates two microphones for use with Amazon Alexa. Unlike competitors like the Osnos Beam (which lacks a subwoofer) and the Bose Soundbar 700, Yamaha won’t be getting Google Assistant in the future.
The main soundbar is about 37 inches wide and 2.5 inches tall, and I found it fits under multiple TVs without blocking the IR port. You can also mount it on a wall in the same horizontal orientation. On the other hand, the subwoofer is a large box that houses a 6.5-inch bass woofer. It’s more intrusive than the bar at about 16 inches square and 7.5 inches wide.
Connections include HDMI input and Output (ARC), digital optical, and Bluetooth. You can connect the soundbar to Ethernet and Wi-Fi for Spotify Connect and Alexa compatibility, though there’s no Air Play 2 or Chromecast built-in.
The soundbar comes with a larger-than-usual remote, and the back is pleasingly concave. Given the minor nature of the soundbar’s LED display readout, the remote control is one of the primary methods of interaction with the soundbar; its selection of buttons is suitably comprehensive and easy to use.
The soundbar does not use the Amazon Alexa app for setup but uses the Yamaha Sound Bar Controller app for iOS and Android
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Big and Spacious Sound
Several smart soundbars are available now, but the closest rival to the YAS-209 is the Polk Command Bar. Both bars offer wireless subwoofers, built-in Amazon Alexa, and HDMI connectivity, so I started comparing the two. It’s been a year since I’ve reviewed the Command Bar and Polk, since I’ve made a few tweaks, including adding Alexa multi-room music support, and the Command Bar is still a good speaker.
In the 12 months since its release I have yet to hear a soundbar that can equal the Yamaha for its mix of sound quality and features, and for this reason it deserves our Editors’ Choice award. The YAS-209 is available from Costco as the ATS-2090 and Yamaha says the two models are identical.
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