I think that this Sony HT-A9 and Bose 900 battle we have to go through together today is going to be pretty damn interesting. I have only had the pleasure of looking at the Sony HT-A9 a couple of times and as it is not a soundbar, I think it makes for an interesting match-up against the Bose Smart Soundbar 900. I am all about Dolby Atmos these days, but I still think that there is a place on the market for a surround sound kind of setup too. That is why I think putting these two head to head against each other is going to be fun.
To say that there is a massive price difference here is an understatement! This Sony HT-A9 and Bose 900 thing we have going on is starting off pretty interestingly as the price difference is so large between these two products that you could make the argument these are almost unworthy comparing!
I hope that you are ready for this because the Sony HT-A9 is going to cost you two grand plus! Amazon themselves do not actually have any of these in stock right now, but there is a third party seller offering them for just over $2,000. Walmart has this in stock and on there it is currently priced at $2,071,50 which is a really random price, isn’t it? I did have a look on eBay and I was pretty shocked as it seems to go for even more than it does on Amazon or Walmart! This is a very premium kind of product and those that really want it seems to be happy paying what is being asked.
Bose Smart Soundbar 900:
I already had the Bose Smart Soundbar 700 in my home and was very happy with it. When I heard that the Bose Smart Soundbar 900 was coming out and it would support Dolby Atmos, I knew I had to have it. However, I was sure that with how amazing the 700 was, the Bose 900 would surely be over a grand. Well, first of all, don’t call me Shirley (an awesome Airplane reference for you there), and secondly, Bose managed to keep the price under a grand. This is currently priced at $899 and I feel that is a great price for a soundbar of this quality. Heck, even the 700 is only $100 bucks cheaper. In 2022, you would be crazy not to pay that extra $100 and not get the Bose Smart Soundbar 900.
This was a first-round knockout for the Bose 900 here. I am not saying that I feel the Sony HT-A9 is overpriced or anything like that, but I just do not see a world where I could ever imagine spending over double the price of the Bose Smart Soundbar 900. Heck, you could even add the Bose Bass Module 900 to it and it would still be less than the price of the Sony HT-A9.
A while back I put the Sony HT-A9 up against the Sonos Arc and this Sony HT-A9 and Bose 900 has a similar “problem” going on with the design category. These are two radically different looking products which makes it hard to do a comparison. Still, I am going to roll up my sleeves and give it my best college try!
As the Sony HT-A9 is not a soundbar, we do actually have quite a bit to talk about in regards to the design of this thing. I suggest you check out something like this Sony HT A9 Review – Not your Average Soundbar video to see it from all angles and get a better idea of what this is all about.
Instead of a soundbar we have this little control box that is pretty cool, it is nice and compact and takes up next to no space, and can fit in front of your TV or projector with no trouble at all. It does not grab your attention and just blends into the background which is something that I like. There is an HDMI in and out, a USB port, a Lan port, and there is also a port if you wanted to add in an extra center speaker. That is all that makes this thing up. It is very well built and it has that Sony quality about it which I really like. The main event of this is the four speakers that come with it.
These speakers are a decent size as they come in at 6.3” x 12.2” x 5.8”. Sony has done you a solid and made sure that you know which ones go at the front and which ones go to the back of the room. These are Dolby Atmos speakers, so you want to make sure you have the right ones in the right place! The speakers are a kind of grey color and man do I wish they were black! They have a very smart looking metal grill and the speakers are made from a very strong plastic. These speakers are also wireless so apart from the power cable you do not have to worry about cables hanging down the wall. As is the case with most other Sony products the Sony HT-A9 comes with a really badass remote that gives you a great level of control over the sound.
Bose Smart Soundbar 900:
I knew when I heard the word that Bose was making the Bose Smart Soundbar 900 that it was going to look amazing. The 700 was such a well designed and cool looking soundbar that it was impossible not to be impressed and they have brought that same style here with the 900. It is a decent size as it is 41,14” x 2,29” x 4,21”, however, this is not too wide if you ask me. The version I am talking about today is the black version, but you can also get this in white as well. The part of the design that I really love about this is the metal grill that does not just cover the front, it wraps around the sides as well. Bose has also used that same metal grill design to cover the up-firing Dolby Atmos speakers that are on the top of the soundbar!
Of course, one of the things that I loved about the design of the Bose Smart Soundbar 700 was the stylish looking and dust attracting glass top. It gave the soundbar a real premium look and Bose has once again used that here, but it is broken up with the metal grills for the extra speakers. On the back of the soundbar, there is an HDMI Arc, a standard HDMI port, an optical port, and the bass port which is there for connecting a subwoofer to it. The only area in which I think the design of the 900 stumbles is with the remote control. This thing is nowhere near as good as the remote Bose has you with the Bose Smart Soundbar 700. Instead, you get just the basic controls and you have to use the Bose App to access the majority of the soundbars features.
As far as a surround sound kind of system goes, I really like what Sony has done with the Sony HT-A9 and if the speakers were black, this perhaps would have been a much closer round. However, I have to give this round to the Bose 900! As of writing this, it is my favorite design of any soundbar, the 700 already looked good and I think it was a smart decision of Bose to keep that same kind of design for this soundbar.
To be honest with you guys the sound category in our Sony HT-A9 and Bose 900 contest is going to be rather interesting as these are two quite different products. I think that the real million dollar question is going to be, is the Sony HT-A9 worth all the extra money?
I think that it is awesome how Sony managed to make this set a Dolby Atmos capable set. The Sony HT-A9 has some great Dolby Atmos capabilities. I would have to say that it is not the most powerful Dolby Atmos I have experienced, but those two rear speakers more than make up for it. I watched Moonfall with this as I fell in love with the movie and it was even better on my second viewing. The way the Dolby Atmos and rear speakers worked together gave me some of the best cinema quality sound I have ever experienced in my home theatre. The bass and power is not quite there like you would get from a dedicated soundbar in my opinion, but I have to say that most “normal” people, people who are not nerdy about stuff like this would not notice this.
I know this sounds cheesy and such a cliché, but it really was like I was being blasted with sound from every angle. Even if you are watching something a bit more lowkey in terms of audio like The Royal Tenenbaums for example. You are going to think that people are actually in your living room or home theatre talking! One thing that I never got round to checking out and I wish I did was the scene from the original X-Men where Charles Xavier was talking to Logan and his voice was coming from all around him. I knew that this system was going to be good, but I was legit blown away at how good it was. I think adding a center speaker and a subwoofer to this would truly give you the best sound you can get at home without going for a professional setup.
Bose Smart Soundbar 900:
Currently in my home theatre I have the Bose Smart Soundbar 900 and I am very, very happy with it. I also have the Bose Bass Module 700 and the Bose Surround Speakers 700 paired with it and I could not be any happier with the sound. I think my setup is better than what you get with the Sony HT-A9, but we have to be fair and just look at the Bose 900 on its own without the extras as that is how it comes in the box. The Dolby Atmos here is fantastic and just last night I watched X-Men: Dark Phoenix which is not my favorite X-Men movie, but the Dolby Atmos track here is amazing, especially during the final battle, it rocks the room and even when you have it cranked up the clarity is great. I think that it does offer more bass and power than people give it credit for too.
I would also suggest that you check out this Bose Smart Soundbar 900 Review: Is Bose Worth It? to get another opinion about this amazing soundbar.
Of all the more recent soundbars that I have looked at, I truly think that the Bose 900 offers the most balanced kind of sound. While the 4K release of Predator does not have a dedicated Dolby Atmos track, I found this to be a great showcase of just how good this soundbar is. It managed to fill the room with sound, but the way it goes from guns blazing to people talking quietly is very impressive and makes watching a movie a more immersive kind of experience.
This is such a hard one to call. The Sony HT-A9 was just incredible and while I thought it was going to be impressive, it actually was even better than I imagined it would be. Yet, I still think that the Bose Smart Soundbar 900 gives a better Dolby Atmos performance. It has more power and it still manages to fill the room with sound. That is why I am giving this round to the Bose Smart Soundbar 900.
Which Is The Better Soundbar?
I had a great time putting together this Sony HT-A9 and Bose 900 comparison. I went into it thinking that the Bose Smart Soundbar 900 was just going to steamroll the Sony HT-A9, yet it turned out to be closer than I thought it would be. The Sony HT-A9 gives you some amazing Dolby Atmos with surround sound and it was so impressive. However, I just do not see it being worth over double the price of the 900. If you have over two grand to spend on a sound system for your home theatre. You would be far better getting the Bose Smart Soundbar along with the Bose Bass Module 700 and the Bose Surround Speakers 700. Even without adding these to the mix, I would still suggest getting the 900 over the HT-A9.