JBL 9.1 vs. Sonos Arc: Which One is Right for You?

Are you trying to decide between the JBL 9.1 and the Sonos Arc for your home theater system? If so, you’re in the right place. This blog post will closely examine the JBL 9.1 and the Sonos Arc and compare their features to help you decide which is best for your needs. We’ll cover everything from audio quality to price point to make sure you make an informed decision when choosing between the JBL 9.1 vs. Sonos Arc. But before we dive into the comparison, let’s quickly go over why soundbars are becoming increasingly popular and what are the different types of soundbars currently available on the market.

Why Are Soundbars Becoming Popular?

Soundbars are becoming increasingly popular for their ability to enhance the audio experience of TV and other audio devices. They are compact, easy to set up and provide high-quality sound for movies, gaming, and more. Soundbars are also great for gamers as they deliver crisp, clear sound with no distortion. The soundbar also helps reduce the clutter of multiple speakers in one room, create a complete surround sound system, and provide a great way to upgrade your audio experience with minimal effort.

What Types Of Soundbars Are There?

You’ll find two main types when shopping for a soundbar: passive and active. Passive soundbars don’t have built-in amplifiers and must be paired with a separate receiver or amplifier to work. On the other hand, active soundbars have their own amplifiers and do not require an additional amplifier to function. Most major electronics companies make home-theater-in-a-box systems, with some offering systems across all categories and others specializing in soundbars. 

Who Are The Most Popular Brands That Make Soundbars?

Popular brands that make soundbars include Yamaha, JBL, Sony, Vizio, Samsung, Sonos, and Bose. Some of these brands even offer upward-firing speakers enabled with Dolby Atmos technology. While buying a soundbar and TV from the same manufacturer is unnecessary, doing so may provide certain benefits. As such, if you’re looking for a soundbar to match your TV, you can check out the offerings from the same brand that made your television.

Now that we’ve got that out of the way, let’s dive into the JBL 9.1 and Sonos Arc comparison!

 JBL 9.1 Overview

The JBL Bar 9.1 is a state-of-the-art soundbar system that boasts an impressive nine separate channels of sound, making it an excellent choice for those looking to upgrade their home theater experience. This system includes four up-firing Atmos speakers that provide an immersive 3D surround sound experience and two detachable surround speakers for added depth. With a total output of 820W, the JBL Bar 9.1 is louder than comparable systems and also features Bluetooth, HDMI IN, and Chromecast support for easy streaming. 

Additionally, this system supports Dolby Atmos and DTS-X audio formats, providing an even more cinematic experience when enjoying movies and music. The excellent battery life guarantees uninterrupted entertainment, while the accompanying remote makes it simple to adjust the volume and settings from anywhere in the room. The JBL Bar 9.1 is ideal for anyone wishing to update their home cinema setup at a fair price.

Key Features

  • Get a Realistic Dolby Atmos and DTS:X Immersive Audio Experience with the JBL Bar 9.1
  • Enjoy Balanced Sound Out-of-the-Box with Extra Bass
  • Easily Connect Your Surround Speakers for a 5.1.4 Soundbar Setup
  • Enjoy 10 Hours of Wireless Playtime from the Detachable Rear-Surrounds
  • Take Control of Your Audio with the Convenient Power, Volume Up/Down, and Input Select Buttons
  • With nine drivers, the JBL Bar 9.1 delivers powerful sound and has a wireless subwoofer to provide deep bass for an impactful listening experience.
  • You don’t need any extra cables or mounting brackets as all necessary parts come included inside the package when purchasing the JBL Bar 9.1, making it easy to set up in no time!
  • Wireless Streaming options are available with Apple Airplay and Android QPlay.


  • Super simple setup
  • Unique design with detachable speakers
  • True Wireless Surround with Dolby Atmos®
  • Designed for use with a 100-240 voltage range
  • Can decode both object-based audio formats and immersive listening experience


  • Expensive compared to other soundbars
  • Lacking dynamic appeal
  • Imprecise effect placement

Sonos Arc Overview

The Sonos Arc is the perfect addition to any home theater system. It offers crystal clear audio with Dolby Atmos support and is optimized by an Academy Award-winning sound engineer. With its eARC connection, you can enjoy the highest quality of sound available on your TV, while an HDMI to optical adapter allows you to use it with older TVs. The Arc sounds excellent on its own, but adding rear speakers and a subwoofer takes your experience to the next level. 

Listening to movies like Star Wars or Zootopia in Atmos surround sound will make you feel like you’re in a high-end movie theater. The Arc also works with voice commands via Alexa or Google for easy access to music streaming services like Amazon Music, adding even more convenience to your setup. This comes in an aesthetically pleasing design that perfectly blends in with any TV stand and looks great in your living room or home theater. 

The Sonos Arc is also compatible with the Sonos S3 app. This incredibly intuitive and user-friendly app helps users set up, control, and enjoy their Sonos soundbar. The app walks users through the setup process step by step, ensuring they don’t miss any crucial details. It also allows for easy control of the various components of the system, including the speakers, soundbar, and subwoofer. It gives users access to many streaming services, including Spotify, Apple Music, Pandora, and others.

With all of these features, it’s no wonder why the Sonos Arc is one of the most popular smart soundbars on the market today.

Key Features

  • With Trueplay Tuning Technology, the Sonos Arc can automatically calibrate itself in any room that it’s set up in, ensuring an optimal listening experience based on the size of your room and its acoustics.
  • The Sonos Arc comes with a wireless subwoofer and the option of adding one or more satellite speakers to your setup. This allows you to create a surround sound system without wires or cables.
  • With voice control compatibility, you can control the Sonos Arc with Alexa and Google Assistant devices, allowing you to easily adjust volume levels and play music without manually operating your soundbar system.
  • Enjoy immersive Dolby Atmos surround sound with this powerful soundbar.
  • Get the most out of your music with TruePlay, voice enhancement, night mode, and AirPlay 2 support.


  • Modern and sleek design
  • Supports Dolby Atmos, Google Assistant, and Amazon Alexa
  • No need for a subwoofer to hear the low end
  • White color is really clean looking
  • Improved design and modern features
  • Stellar sound
  • Unmatched clarity and depth for the home cinema experience


  • Price looks a little on the high side
  • Has only one HDMI port
  • No Bluetooth streaming is available

JBL 9.1 vs. Sonos Arc: Design

Regarding design, both the JBL 9.1 and the Sonos Arc soundbars are sleek and modern and will look great in any setting. The JBL 9.1 system includes surround speakers and a subwoofer, while the Sonos Arc has a more minimalistic design with just the soundbar included. Both come in black finishes, so they are sure to complement any decor. Both soundbars will look good in your living room or bedroom, making them great for anyone looking for an aesthetically pleasing audio device.

So we can’t call a winner in terms of design as these soundbars will suit people of different tastes and overall they are both great looking soundbars. 

JBL 9.1 vs. Sonos Arc: Connectivity

JBL 9.1 and Sonos Arc both offer impressive connectivity for their soundbars. JBL 9.1 offers connection via HDMI, as well as a WiFi connection and an optical connector. On the other hand, Sonos Arc uses eARC, ARC, and other optical outputs; however, eARC is the best option to use with this soundbar. Both soundbars are compatible with any device with an HDMI port, making it easy to connect to your TV or other devices. These soundbars provide great connectivity options that make it easy to integrate into your home entertainment system.

The JBL 9.1 soundbar offers more connections than the Sonos Arc, providing users access to various input sources. It has an HDMI connection and a WiFi connection, as well as an optical connector. This allows users to connect their devices directly to the soundbar or wirelessly via WiFi, giving them a great range of options for their audio setup. The Sonos Arc, by comparison, only has access to eARC, ARC, and optical outputs. The JBL 9.1 gives users more connection options for their audio setup, allowing them to customize it for their needs and preferences.

JBL 9.1 vs. Sonos Arc: Sound Quality

The JBL 9.1 and the Sonos Arc soundbars provide excellent sound quality for your home. The JBL 9.1 has a dedicated subwoofer and satellites for clear, high-quality sound with Dolby Atmos and DTS:X built in. It also has detachable speakers for an immersive surround sound experience. The Sonos Arc is well-built and has a simple setup. It offers five channels of audio which are perfect for delivering expansive height effects of Dolby Atmos. Both soundbars provide excellent sound quality, but there is a winner here, and we will dive deeper into the sound quality of both soundbars and explain why we prefer one over the other. 

The JBL Bar 9.1 soundbar is the perfect way to bring the audio experience of a movie theater into your home. It has two detachable surround speakers and Dolby Atmos® for an impressive 5.1.4 setup. The two detachable satellite speakers provide proper surround sound and are wireless, rechargeable, and can play your favorite audio wirelessly for up to 10 hours. With 820 W of sound power, it also supports Dolby Atmos and DTSX for a 3D audio boost and is sure to bring life to any movie night. All in all, the JBL Bar 9.1 soundbar is an ideal addition to any home entertainment system. The JBL 9.1 provides excellent bass response due to the subwoofer included with the soundbar, which makes all the difference.

The Sonos Arc also provides pretty good sound quality, but the JBL 9.1 blows the Sonos Arc away in this battle as the JBL is a multi-speaker system that comes with a subwoofer. On the other hand, the Sonos Arc only comes with the soundbar itself and, therefore, cannot produce the level of surround sound like the JBL 9.1 can. The Sonos Arc also doesn’t support DTS:X like the JBL 9.1 and can only support Dolby Atmos. 

This doesn’t mean that the Sonos Arc doesn’t provide good sound quality, as we still believe it can offer a great surround sound experience. However, if we compare it to the JBL 9.1, the JBL wins pretty comprehensively. The JBL 9.1 is simply spectacular in terms of its sound quality. 

JBL 9.1 vs. Sonos Arc: Price

The JBL Bar 9.1 is a budget-friendly soundbar alternative with a dedicated subwoofer and satellites, making it an excellent option for those seeking an immersive audio experience on a budget. The cost is around $1,000, but occasional sales drop the price to $850. The Sonos Arc is slightly cheaper that usually retails between $800 and $1000. 

If you are deciding based on budget, then the Sonos Arc is the better choice, as the soundbar tends to be cheaper than the JBL at most retail outlets. However, considering value for money, features, and sound quality, we believe the JBL 9.1 is the better choice. The price tag of $1000 might seem hefty initially. Still, the quality of sound you’re getting and the additional wireless subwoofer and two detachable speakers make the JLB 9.1 well worth its price compared to other soundbars in the market in its price range. 

JBL 9.1 vs. Sonos Arc: The Verdict

The overall winner for the comparison between JBL 9.1 and Sonos Arc is JBL 9.1. It offers a powerful and beautiful theater experience with a Dolby Atmos soundtrack or a Dolby 5.1 track for movies and shows. Furthermore, it boasts an impressive 5.1 channel layout, easy setup and connection capabilities, and great stereo frequency response for excellent sound quality. In addition, it has the bonus of supporting Dolby Atmos and DTS content, making it the perfect choice for your next sonic experience. The final reason we believe the JBL 9.1 is the better choice overall is that it offers more value for money and is slightly more expensive than the Sonos Arc. However, factoring in the superiority of its features and sound quality, paying a few extra dollars for the JBL 9.1 is worth the additional cost.


To conclude this article, both soundbars are excellent, but the JBL is simply brilliant. As mentioned earlier in the article, the Sonos Arc is also a superb soundbar, and there are many things we love about the soundbar. Still, it’s up against a formidable competitor in the JBL 9.1. Overall, whichever soundbar you purchase, you will be satisfied with both as they are both high-quality products that set the standards in the soundbar industry.

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