LG has brought me to England to listen to some new soundbars, so I figure these must be pretty special soundbars. I normally listen to soundbars in big appliance stores just like my readers do but, hey, it’s LG’s dime.
The special thing about these soundbars is the little badge on them that reads ‘Meridian.’ Meridian is a name after which hi fi buffs lust. It’s an English company making speakers, amplifiers, CD players and streaming equipment and it has been at the top of these various trees for more than four decades. And now LG is partnering with it for soundbars.
Partnerships like this either work or they don’t. When it got into cameras Panasonic partnered with Leica and it worked brilliantly, but how many people bought a Proton sedan because Lotus had a hand in the suspension? These partnerships are all about commitment. If it is to maintain its brand values the established brand – in this case Meridian – has to make very sure that anything wearing its name delivers a genuine benefit over and above the norm. This can mean some robust meetings with the aspiring brand, in this case LG.
Knowing Meridian I’m expecting good sound. But that’s not the only partnership LG has going. It is also putting Dolby Atmos in these soundbars. Atmos delivers sound from above as well as all around, so a helicopter really does sound like it’s above you. Okay, the Atmos in these operates with sound reflected off the ceiling rather than having actual roof speakers. It’s okay as long as your ceiling isn’t too high, and it’s why demos don’t work in big showrooms. As the sound bounces off the ceiling it also spreads, increasing the sweet spot; that spot where everything sounds right. So the far end of the couch still works.