I had a Samsung soundbar & subwoofer. The subwoofer died. The soundbar still works. I read about the Roku soundbar & subwoofer. I read that it works with any TV. I'm considering replacing my Samsung soundbar with the Roku soundbar. Presently, I will have 2 hdmi connections on my 55" Samsung TV- one for cable & one for the Roku soundbar. Or are the Roku soundbar & subwoofer completely wireless? Will the Roku soundbar work with cable or only with the Roku device or only work with Roku TVs?
The Roku Smart soundbar requires a connection to your TV, either HDMI ARC, (for audio output from the TV and/or video playback from the Soundbar's built in Roku player) or via S/PDIF optical for audio output from the TV.
The Roku Smart Soundbar will work with both Roku TVs, and standard TVs. Your cable box would need to be connected to your TV, and your TV then connected to the soundbar via HDMI ARC or an optical cable, in order to pass audio to the soundbar.
I had forgotten that the soundbar has a Roku player included!
I just looked at the back of my 55" HDTV. The set top box is plugged into HDMI 1 (labelled (STB)). HDMI 2 is labeled ARC. Since the subwoofer died, I've been using the TV's speakers.
So, I plug the soundbar into HDMI 2.
If I want to use the Roku player, I'd need to switch the TV input/source to HDMI 2 or if I want to watch cable, I'd switch the input/source to HDMI 1.
But HDMI carries both audio & video. Well, this is confusing! The Samsung soundbar has an HDMI In AND an HDMI Out. Maybe they are for passthru to an AV receiver. I'm pretty sure that when the soundbar worked, both the soundbar AND the subwoofer were connected by Bluetooth. I remember that it took a few seconds to switch to Bluetooth so there was silence for a few seconds. Seems to me if I want to watch cable, there would be no sound because the soundbar is connected to a different source/input. Or I'd listen to the sound from the TV's speakers every time that I want to watch cable.
HDMI ARC allows audio output via HDMI to a connected HDMI ARC compatible receiver, such as an A/V receiver or soundbar, when configured. Even if you are watching an input source connected to another HDMI input port on the TV, your TV should be capable of sending audio from your cable box out to the soundbar via the HDMI ARC port.