TV’s produce amazing pictures in these days of 4K content and live streaming, and some TVs offer impressive sound. Some of them have under-screen speakers, edge speakers and even rear mounted sub-woofers like the TCL C835 I reviewed recently. Impressive, for sure. But hook up a sound bar and there’s no TV that compares to the direct forward firing sound you get from that extra box in front of the TV.

This week in the EFTM Man-Cave, the TCL TS8132 which is a delightful product name, describing the latest 3.1.2 channel Dolby Atmos Sound Bar from TCL.

TCL put the RRP at $699, retailers put it at $499 and we’ve seen it as low as $399 and at either of those latter prices, I’d say go and get one. Stat.

Brand loyalty doesn’t need to be a thing with soundbars by the way, as I’ve said before – JBL’s offering is TV agnostic, and this TCL is no different.

Sure if you’ve got a TCL TV the brands line up, but with the right TV connection using ARC for your HDMI from the TV to the Soundbar and you’ve got power and volume control with your existing TV remote.

Out of the box, this is a nice looking unit. Fabric covered from front to back, rounded edges for a bit of style and simplistic features like the buttons on top and a screen that’s embedded behind the fabric.

This is – as the product full name states, a 3.1.2, meaning three front firing speakers, one sub-woofer and two channels of audio above you.

Of course, this “above” speaker concept is virtual, as the actual system is just the physical soundbar and the sub-woofer.

Jumping straight into a brutal action packed episode of Drive to Survive, one of the most heavily audio mixed shows I’ve ever watched – and boy oh boy, we’ve gone from a TV to a sound system in a heartbeat.

Booming sound, some very clear channel separation and a great bass from what is a relatively smallish sub-woofer.

It could be my room configuration, but the left and right differentiation isn’t outrageous, but it’s very clearly there – though those extra two channels of audio from above are not easy to pickup.

I know Dolby Atmos is awesome, and it’s a great logo to place on things, but sometimes I just wish we’d be happy with the 3.1 here and not have to oversell the extra .2 because I think it requires a perfect room, and amazing ears.

Turn off the TV and you’ve got WiFi and Bluetooth streaming, with the option also of 4K passthrough on HDMI meaning you’re not losing a 4K input to your TV.

Despite it’s slim size, it’s a solid booming sound, and for $500 or less, it’s an instant must consider for your TV room.

And it doesn’t HAVE to be a new TV either, if you don’t have ARC HDMI connection does your TV have an Optical out? That too will create amazing sound.

I like the simplicity of the design, and I like the solid volume coming from it, for action, sports no matter what – it will improve the viewing experience.

Check it out at TCL, or buy now from JB HiFi, The Good Guys and Appliances Online