Okay. I’m taking a huge break from my normal blogging style to discuss something that is near and dear to my heart: What speakers go with the Apple TV 4?
As some of you may know, the Apple TV 4 does not have an Audio-Out Port, which made our awesome (20-year-old) surround sound system go to the attic with everything else time's forgot. It was time to upgrade the speakers, because our first generation Apple TV had finally spirited away with the ghost of Christmas Past, along with its precious Audio-Out.
This caused a 12-hour frenzy. What speakers work with the Apple TV 4? This was not easy to find out. It took exactly 2 hours of talking to Apple Customer Support, an Apple Store Employee, three people at Best Buy in two trips, one to return a set of Polk Omni-SB1 speakers (1: Not compatible with AirPlay, 2: Made Behemoth sound like swamp-metal — aka, they sounded terrible), and 5 hours spent trying to get those Polk Omni-SB1 Speakers to work, which the Internet assured us had HDMI capabilities.
SPOILER ALERT: They don’t. Damn you, Internet.
What speakers work with the Apple TV 4?
Anything with an HDMI hookup or Bluetooth capabilities.
We found that out by using our own Bose Mini Soundlink, and while Mad Max came through sounding a bit muffled, it sounded better than just through our TV Speakers, the way cavemen used to watch Fury Road back in the olden days. I am not a caveman. I need a real sound system.
We ended up getting the Sony - 2.1 Channel Soundbar with Wireless Subwoofer.
1) The soundbar has three HDMI hookups. Which is ideal: one for the TV, one for the Apple TV, and one to grow on.
2) It made Behemoth sound the way Behemoth should sound. Crisp, tight, and with every instrument coming through clear and precise. Then I played Nick Cave’s “Song of Joy” and that sounded better than I’d ever heard. It filled the room perfectly.
3) After 5 hours of downloading Apps on our phones and computers to make the Polk Omni-SB1 work with our phones and tablet, James had the Sony Soundbar set up in the less-than five minutes it took me to take out the recycling.
4) Suggestions made to get the Polk Omni-SB1 working were going to cost us up to $100 more than we’d already on a system when we didn't like the sound. The Sony system was half as much and sounded much better, and it didn’t need over $100 in accessories to get it to work.
Now - we have a small, thin living room. Kind of like a boxcar. The soundbar and subwoofer are ideal for the space. There’s an open archway to the dining room and then to the kitchen, but the sound is lost by the time you’re in the kitchen. But I don’t need to hear “Luke, I am your father” for the 999th time while I’m emptying the dishwasher.
So if your sound needs aren’t to fill an actual home theatre: What speakers work with the Apple TV 4? Sony - 2.1 Channel Soundbar with Wireless Subwoofer. You can get the system from Best Buy for less than $300. If you are looking for a surround sound speaker system - you need HDMI hookup or Bluetooth.
And here ends my blog post in an attempt to give to the Internet what I didn’t have when I spent hours searching for the answer contained above.
Go forth, and be excellent to each other.