Edifier CineSound B3 Soundbar Speaker Review

Hi guys! Today I’ll be reviewing Edifier CineSound B3, one of Edifier’s latest speaker releases in 2015. This sleek 1 meter long svelte sound bar speaker provides a better cinematic effect compared to traditional TV speakers, making it suitable for home entertainment without taking up much space. It’s made of high-strength composite materials to minimize acoustic resonance and has built-in high efficiency switch power for energy saving while producing loud volume. The SRP (Suggested Retail Price) is 599 MYR (approximately 160 USD).

Intro: CineSound B3 Soundbar length is approximately 2 full-sized keyboards + 2 regular mice.

Edifier has a variety of speaker series ranging from 2.0 stereo speaker to 5.1 speaker setup. Now Edifier introduces another new series known as B series to cater for Soundbar speaker and CineSound B3 is the very first in the line-up. Soon Edifier will be releasing other models such as B1 and B7 which are accompanied with different set of features and price tag. Before diving into this review, let’s take a glance over the technical specifications and features that this product has to offer!

Features

  • Easily switches between 3D mode, News mode and Movie mode with remote control.
  • Accessible with optical, coaxial, line-in and auxiliary input ports for multiple use.
  • Bluetooth 4.0 enabled.
  • Additional bass output port ideal for external subwoofer.
  • HI-FI optical and coaxial digital inputs also support STB and X-Box digital audio sources.
  • 70mm aluminum diaphragm mid-range and 19mm silk dome tweeter speakers.
  • Electronic-crossover signal processing uses DSP technology.
  • Wall mount bracket included.

Specifications

  • Power output : RMS 16W×2(Treble)+19 W×2(Mid-range and bass)
  • Signal to noise ratio : ≥85dBA
  • Frequency response : 60Hz~20kHz (±6dB)
  • Input sensitivity : Line in: 700 ± 50mV AUX: 550 ± 50mV OPT, COA: 400mFFs ± 50mFFs
  • Input type : Auxiliary/Line in/Coaxial /Optical/Bluetooth
  • Bass driver : 2¾” (70mm)
  • Treble driver : 3/4” (19mm) silk dome tweeter
  • Speaker dimension : 1000×79×80 mm
  • Packing box dimension : 1066×170×143mm

Ordering Details

EAN: 6923520264704 | B3 Black

Packaging

Packaging-1: The packaging is somewhat different compared to other Edifier speakers as it comes with a sticker with colored diagrams instead of just the red-black color scheme. Both left and right sides displays “Edifier” logo and the model “CineSound B3 Soundbar”, along with the features it comes with it.

Packaging-2: Here is a closeup of the sticker that I mentioned earlier. On the very right corner, it describes the B3 Sound Bar suitable for “Home Theater / Home Entertainment / Lifestyle”. On the left side, it has a sticker along with the measurement length of the soundbar (1 meter), and 150cm Toslink. It shows the RCA to 3.5mm cable, remote control and input output interface.

Packaging-3: Here is another closeup of the packaging features. Starting from left to right: Bluetooth v4.0, Optical, Coaxial, Remote Control, DSP Control (Digital Signal Control), Electronic Crossover, RCA Input, AUX and 100-240V Auto Switching Power.

Unboxing

Unboxing-1: Cutting the top seal, the first item that can be seen from the opening of this box is the wall mount wrapped in plastic. Underneath it is the remote control, CineSound B3 Soundbar protected with white thick hard foam.

Unboxing-2: The box contents contains the following items (left to right, top to bottom): 3.5mm-RCA audio cable, Remote control, User Manual, Warranty Card, Fiber optic input cable, Speaker and Wall Mount Bracket (33 inch / 85 cm). It does not come with any concrete screws to secure the wall mount to the wall.

Accessories

Accessory-1: The fiber optic input cable measures 57 inches. Each end is protected with a pair of mini plastic cap which you will need to remove them first before inserting to the speaker input and audio source output.

Accessory-2: The RCA to 3.5mm audio cable measures 67 inches, 10 inches longer compared to the fiber optic cable. You can use this cable if your audio source output does not have SPDIF output, but the sound quality will not be optimal.

Accessory-3: The remote control model is RC10A1 which uses CR2025 3V Lithium Cell Battery. It has 12 buttons which are evenly spaced out to make it easy for large fingers to press without triggering other buttons. Starting from top left to bottom right: Mute, Power On-Standby, Volume Decrease, Volume Increase, Line In, Auxiliary, Coaxial, Optical, Bluetooth, 3D, News and Movie. The last 3 buttons (3D, News, Movie) are sounds preset aka mode which you can switch depending on your listening preferences. There is a thin plastic provided to prevent battery consumption. When compared to the older Edifier speaker remote controls, it has skipped using AA battery that makes it much overall device larger.

Accessory-4: The provided user manual guides user on how to install the speaker to the wall mount bracket and how to interact with the speaker buttons.

Accessory-5: This is the warranty card that comes inside the packaging which you write your personal details in it. One copy for you and the other copy for the distributor. In my case, its Inter-Asia for Malaysia. The warranty card appearance may differ based on Edifier’s distributor located in various countries.

Accessory-6: The wall mount bracket measures 33 inches (approximately 85 cm). This solid metal bracket has a smooth black coating texture and it does not flex.

Design

Design-1: Taking a look at the front of the CineSound B3 Soundbar, the Edifier logo can be seen in the middle of the black thin cloth. I discovered that one third of the speaker width from the center isn’t hollow, which means the speaker driver are only located on the left and right sides. The front cover is removable unlike other soundbar in the market.

Design-2: The CineSound B3 Sound Bar has a L.E.D. which displays 3 colors. Red for Coaxial and Optical, Green for Line In and Auxiliary, Blue for Bluetooth. These modes can be set via the remote control or multiple-button clicks from the side of this speaker!

Design-3: Looking at the sides of the this speaker, both sides have chrome blunt edges which gives a sophisticated appearance. The left side has Edifier phrase “A Passion for Sound” while on the right side has 4 mini circular buttons. The “+” Plus Symbol is to increase volume whereas the “-” Minus symbol is to decrease volume. There is a power on-standby button and also the mode button. The input mode button will require a few presses to loop through a sequence of input modes.

Design-4: On the speaker rear, we can find 2 metal hooks which are used to clip onto the wall mount bracket. If users prefer to have it sit on a desk, there are 2 anti-slip rubber padding to prevent it from sliding off easily on smooth surface.

Design-5: The input output interface can be found hidden at the rear of the speaker too. Starting from left to right: Optical Input, Coaxial Input, Line In (Red-White) Input, Auxiliary Input, Subwoofer Output, Power Cable (hard wired). This speaker can be plugged to an active subwoofer to play the lower bass.

Design-6: The power cable is a 2-pin plug which is measured 62 inches in length. It is fairly long enough to access power source located at a far distance from your display input (e.g. monitor / TV).

Design-7: Here is a look at the CineSound B3 Sound Bar cover mesh. It’s made of flexible plastic yet durable. The center of the cover does not have any holes since the speaker driver are all located at the far left and right edges.

Design-8: CineSound B3 Soundbar has 6 speaker drivers (2 tweeters x 16W, 2 mid range driver x 19W, 2 subwoofer driver x 19W). The center of the speaker holds the speaker electronic components. The L.E.D. light bulb and sensor can be seen here.

Design-9: Here is a closer inspection of the all 3 speaker drivers. The mini hole is basically a port to allow air to move freely whenever the bass driver is actively playing.

Design-10: Another look at the tweeter and mid-range driver. The silk dome tweeter is 19mm in size while the mid-range and bass driver is 70mm. Both are held securely with 4 screws on each corner.

Discoveries

New Speaker Smell

When I first turned on the speaker and played it at 50% volume for the first few hours, I did not noticed any hot glue rubber smell coming out of the speakers which I had experience with the Edifier R2730DB. This weird smell is similar to burn glue used for the speaker driver.

Sub out aka Subwoofer Output

I performed a quick test by connecting the CineSound B3 Soundbar Sub Out to Edifier R2730DB speaker via RCA to 3.5mm audio cable. I noticed the lower bass is audible but soft. This similar experience is shared with the R2730DB where its sub out also played soft bass too.

Temperature

Running the speakers for few hours with random music (techno, trance, K-pop, J-pop, instrumental, rock, etc) generated high heat behind this active speaker. The warmth is much more compared to a Western Digital Caviar 2TB Hard Disk on load, approximately 40~48 degree Celsius. Most of the heat are generated around the center area of the speaker.

No hissing noise on Idle or Mute + No pop on power up/down

As expected from a high-end speaker, there isn’t any hissing/electrostatic noise emitted when the speaker is on idle, mute and standby. When the speaker is power up or power down from the power plug, it does not emit any annoying popping noise like most lower-end speakers.

Speakers Magnetically Shielded

The one thing that annoys me about speaker is that they emit weird blip-blip noise when a SMS/call is received if the phone is placed close to the speaker. This common speaker issue doesn’t occur to the CineSound B3 Soundbar as all the drivers are magnetically shielded. Thumbs up! No issues when placing side by side to the monitor with the strong magnets as its not faced directly.

Coverage for Bluetooth and Remote Control

I played a FLAC music via my smartphone using Bluetooth connection to the CineSound B3 and measured the distance the speaker can receive the signal. The speaker is capable of receiving the audio signal up to 4 meters with direct line-of-sight. This same applies with the remote control as it could send its signals up to 4 meter as well when there are no obstruction in its path.

Speaker Volume

The default speaker volume is reset to 10 (1/5th of the total volume, approximately 20%) whenever you set the volume lower than 10 upon placing it to standby mode (off). I discovered that the volume is much louder when using the fiber optic cable compared to the RCA to 3.5mm audio cable.

Power Consumption

I used a digital power energy meter to calculate the power consumption of the speakers. My findings revealed the CineSound B3 consumes 0W on standby (power off) and 4.7~5W on idle and mute. It goes on standby mode automatically after 10 minutes of idling to conserve electricity. There are 3 different presets which you can set the CineSound to play the audio: 3D with added bass, Movie for slightly lesser punchier bass, and News which focuses more towards vocals. The 3D preset consumes approximately 15-25W to deliver powerful bass whereas Movie preset uses 7-10W and News preset uses 5-7W of power when all 3 presets are played at the volume of 70% with casual music. The power consumption can increase around 30-40W if the speaker plays heavy bass music at 80% volume.

Sound Default Format

What sound default format can these speakers play? I have tested 2 connections using my PC and they are Optical cable (Digital) and RCA-to-3.5mm (Analog). The result “PASS” means there is sound coming out from speaker and “FAIL” means there is no sound emitted. The analog is able to play sound on all format whereas digital can play all except 96 KHz and 192KHz (Studio Quality).

Optical (Digital Input)
2 channel, 16 bit, 44100 Hz (CD Quality) = PASS
2 channel, 16 bit, 48000 Hz (DVD Quality) = PASS
2 channel, 16 bit, 96000 Hz (Studio Quality) = FAIL
2 channel, 16 bit, 192000 Hz (Studio Quality) = FAIL
2 channel, 24 bit, 44100 Hz (CD Quality) = PASS
2 channel, 24 bit, 48000 Hz (DVD Quality) = PASS
2 channel, 24 bit, 96000 Hz (Studio Quality) = FAIL
2 channel, 24 bit, 192000 Hz (Studio Quality) = FAIL

RCA-to-3.5mm (Analog Input)
2 channel, 16 bit, 44100 Hz (CD Quality) = PASS
2 channel, 16 bit, 48000 Hz (DVD Quality) = PASS
2 channel, 16 bit, 96000 Hz (Studio Quality) = PASS
2 channel, 16 bit, 192000 Hz (Studio Quality) = PASS
2 channel, 24 bit, 44100 Hz (CD Quality) = PASS
2 channel, 24 bit, 48000 Hz (DVD Quality) = PASS
2 channel, 24 bit, 96000 Hz (Studio Quality) = PASS
2 channel, 24 bit, 192000 Hz (Studio Quality) = PASS

Sound Quality

The CineSound B3 has 3 different presets and the default is “Movie”. After testing out all 3 presets with various genre, I discovered that the 3D preset provides the most bass effect followed by Movie and lastly News. 3D is best for both music listening and watching movies. However there are times where playing heavy bass muddies the other tracks when it tries to play the lower bass notes with strong vibration. Therefore, switching to Movie preset counters this issue as it caps the bass at a certain level without forcing the bass out.

In addition, the sound dispersion feels a little special. The 3D provides a broader sound dispersion whereas Movie provides a straight focus sound dispersion. News preset produces a narrower concentrated sound field which is best for vocals.

The soundbar produces clear and crisp vocals, mid tones are good and the bass is slightly punchy. If you have an unused subwoofer lying around, you can plug it in to the CineSound B3 Sounbar for additional lower bass support! The sound positioning is just as good too, so you will not stumble into issues of hearing the direction of enemies in an FPS game before you see them.

Verdict

Although the CineSound B3 does not provide greater sound spectrum in mid and bass due to its smaller speaker drivers, its slim form factor allows users to easily place it beneath the TV/monitor or better yet wall mount it to save additional desk space. For those who are searching for a unique non-boxy traditional speaker appearance to complement their ultra-wide flat screen display monitor, then this speaker might be just for you. If you have a subwoofer lying around, you can plug it in to the CineSound B3 Sounbar for additional lower bass support! Overall, the CineSound B3 Soundbar gets my thumbs up as it delivers crystal clear treble, powerful bass and balance mids when used for watching movie or casual music listening.

Expectations

There are a few features that I would like to see in the CineSound B3 Soundbar if Edifier were to make a second revision of this speaker. The first would be having a knob controller (e.g. potentiometer) to control the bass volume and treble volume. It would be nice to see the treble-bass adjustment on the remote control too! The second would be a switch to turn on-off the internal built-in subwoofer while allowing the external subwoofer to be played out. The third would be a LCD panel that displays the current volume, sound mode, mute and input which makes it much more user friendly. I would also like to see a longer fiber optic cable with similar length to the RCA to 3.5mm audio cable as it would be very helpful when the audio source output is located far away from the speaker itself.

Edifier CineSound B3 Video

Edifier CineSound B3 Sound Test with Music (3D, Movie, News) + Dell U2515H

Edifier CineSound B3 Sound Test with Show (3D, Movie, News) + Dell U2515H

Edifier CineSound B3 Sound Test Speaker Driver Reveal

Disclosure: The review sample was provided by Inter-Asia Edifier – if you’re looking for this speaker, you know where to find them.

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