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Review: Teufel Cinebar 11 – good sound for an affordable amount

4.7 - 3 vote[s]

The Teufel Cinebar 11 is a sleek soundbar with a wireless subwoofer that has a total of eight drivers. With a suggested retail price of 399.99 euros, it is a relatively affordable soundbar, but what quality can you get for that?

Teufel Cinebar 11 – design and specifications

With the new Teufel Cinebar 11 2.1 set The German brand has launched a wide but very slim soundbar on the market. The soundbar has eight drivers, which you can see well behind the grid on the front. In the middle of that front is an LCD screen from which you can make information, such as which port is selected and how high the volume is. The television speaker stands on a leg, so that it does not rest entirely on a cupboard and you can see the cables from the back underneath.

That does not look very attractive. It is good to know that you can also hang the soundbar on the wall, as there are holes for that. You can therefore conceal the cables a little better (but getting rid of them almost never works). On top of that we find four buttons: source selection, volume up, volume down and the on and off button. This may not look very luxurious for the appearance, but for the practical use it is nice that the buttons are easily accessible. This also applies to the auxiliary connection.

The other connections are on the back. There is room for an optical cable, which is often a good way for people with an older or cheaper television to transmit the sound. Modern or slightly more expensive televisions do not always have this port, so it is nice that you can also use HDMI. One of the two ports is for the television, while the other is for another device. In addition, the Cinebar 11 also has Bluetooth. There is no WiFi or things like Google Cast or Spotify Connect available.

Teufel Cinebar 11 – installation

Unfortunately installation is not that easy. Normally you plug in the plugs and the soundbar and the wireless subwoofer find each other by themselves, but that is not the case here. You will have to perform the link manually. The link button is on the bottom of the woofer, so you have to put it on its side when you are busy. You have to find the correct setting on the soundbar via the remote control and then you can start pairing (luckily this process is well described in the manual).

Once that pairing has been done, you no longer have to do this. In the future, both devices will find each other immediately when you have turned on the soundbar. We also did not notice during use that the connection was lost. One problem we have encountered is making a bluetooth connection. In the end we were able to do it via the built-in NFC chip. Our telephone, a OnePlus 6T however, was unable to find the soundbar manually (but it can also be on the telephone).

Teufel Cinebar 11 – in use [19659003] Installation therefore takes a little more time than you may be used to from a soundbar with a wireless subwoofer, but luckily once you start using the device it works fine. When you switch on the television, the soundbar also switches on automatically. If you want to adjust the volume, you can use your TV remote control for this; you do not actually need the supplied Teufel remote for this basic function. You do need it for activating the surround sound or changing the source.

The remote control is quite compact. Just a bit too compact for comfortable operation. In addition to the above functions, you can also set the level of the subwoofer with the remote, select the menu and switch on evening mode. That evening mode, incidentally, seems to have little effect; only the higher tones are somewhat watered down, but for the rest you do well to just turn down the volume. The Display button makes it possible to adjust the strength of the LED display.

Teufel Cinebar 11 – audio quality

Depositing 400 euros for a soundbar is still a considerable amount, but it is again not the main prize if you look at sound bars in general. It is, however, important to adjust the expectation somewhat when you start looking for a soundbar on budget. That said, the Teufel Cinebar 11 with its wireless subwoofer will probably not disappoint you at all. There is enough to notice though. But that first impression remains: decent sound for a relatively low amount.

So there are some reservations. For example, we have noticed that the sound field is not very wide, which means that the sound can sometimes sound hollow. Not all tones come out well; we miss a certain bearing that we do encounter on more expensive models. That is of course an unfair comparison. When you first had to do it with a small soundbar or had no external speakers at all, then things like this do not stand out. Then it almost always sounds good and pure.

Even when you are used to it, the sound reproduction sounds that way, but there are things that can stand out. Furthermore, it is striking that the bass sound can be overly present (which you can adjust) and that it is virtually absent at another time at the same setting. Of course, it depends on what you do, but that sometimes makes the bass reproduction unreliable. If you switch off the soundbar, you will hear the difference clearly. So the bass does a good job, but we think it is just a little too subtle from time to time.

Teufel is a brand intended for young and hip people and so it focuses on a good bass response. While listening to music this is often okay and we also have little to complain during gaming. The shots from the pistols of Red Dead Redemption 2 still sound overwhelming. However, if you go up to speed with fast or electronic music, that can cause an unpleasant sound. The tones can hardly be taken apart. It feels a bit too much at that moment and not in the right way.

If you turn on the surround sound, you will initially hear little difference with the normal mode. Voices sound farther away, but otherwise the normal and surround modes match. Unfortunately, the Teufel Cinebar 11 does not have other sound modes such as music, gaming or film, but it is possible to adjust the settings of the bass and treble to your own taste. So you still have a little control over the sound reproduction; however, it remains a pity that those modes are not present.

Then we encountered two other problems. When you switch on the Teufel Cinebar 11, the subwoofer first turns on and then the soundbar. That means that you have no sound for half a second. That also happens when it is quiet in a movie, series or game and then it can become annoying. In addition, it has been noticed that the sound sometimes lags behind, but only with live TV. Are you watching a video via a streaming service or are you gaming?

Teufel Cinebar 11 – conclusion

Don't get us wrong: the Teufel Cinebar 11 is really not a bad soundbar. You won't find better for 399.99 euros. However, that does not mean that we should not criticize anything that works well. The first impression that the soundbar with its wireless subwoofer leaves after installation is good and that impression knows how to hold the device. Generally the sounds sound clear and pure, while the sub is sometimes just overwhelming or just a bit too subtle. That just depends on what you are doing.

A somewhat tricky installation, just a bit too compact remote control, the fact that the sound sometimes lags behind and in the beginning or at quiet moments, we think the biggest ones are downsides of the Teufel Cinebar 11. Fortunately, the sound only lags behind during live TV; so if you are a cord cutter, you will hardly notice this. However, the two most important aspects are good: the soundbar is very easy to use and the sound sounds good, but nevertheless 399.99 euros may be just a bit too much to ask for.

Cons

  • Busy sound is not beautiful presented
  • Surround and evening mode have little effect
  • Sometimes delay in sound

Plus points

  • Bass sound can pop well
  • Decent sound reproduction for this price
  • Practical addition to TV

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