This RIF6 soundbar review looks at the features and performance of a 2.0-channel device that retails for less than $100. Does this budget soundbar exceed expectations? To find out whether the 35-inch RIF6 soundbar is a good decision, keep going.
RIF6 Soundbar Review: Unboxing
The soundbar makes a good impression from the minute you open the package. Inside, you will find everything you need to set up and operate the RIF6 2.0 channel soundbar. The manufacturer provides the following cables:
- A 3.5mm-to-RCA adapter
- An aux cable
- An optical cable
- HDMI cable
- Power cable
The soundbar also comes with wall-mount brackets and screws. This is in addition to a wall-mount pattern and a user manual.
Being a 2.0 channel audio device, the RIF6 doesn’t ship with a subwoofer. Instead, the manufacturer incorporates additional drivers into the bar to cover the bass audio elements.
Design and build
The RIF6 has the build quality and aesthetic of a high-end soundbar, a nice touch that goes well with its attractive pricing.
This 35-inch soundbar has rounded edges that give it a sleek outline. A metal grille covers the forward-firing speakers at the front of the bar and gives some sheen to the charcoal-grey color-scheme. The rest of the soundbar sits inside sturdy plastic of varying glossiness and texture.
You’ll find a USB port and a set of controls on the right side of the RIF6. The rest of the input ports sit in an inset at the back.
Inputs and connectivity
The RIF6 soundbar is compatible with most, if not all modern TV sets. The auxiliary port offers connectivity for older TV sets that lack HDMI or optical ports. There’s a single HDMI port with ARC capability that allows you to use the TV remote to perform basic tasks on the soundbar. Next to the HDMI port is a digital optical port.
Bluetooth 5.0 connectivity lets you channel music from your devices from a distance of up to 33 feet.
RIF6 soundbar review: Setup and operation
The RIF6 is in essence a plug-and-play device. Physical installation is as simple as placing the soundbar on your TV stand or mounting it on your wall. Once the soundbar is situated, connect it to a power source and the TV. Turn the soundbar on, and a digital LED display will shine through the metal mesh at the front of the soundbar. Audio should automatically redirect from your TV speakers to the soundbar.
An HDMI connection lets you turn the soundbar on and off with a compatible TV remote. The connection also allows you to adjust the soundbar’s volume. An optical or analog connection will have you juggling two remotes since you would need to use the soundbar’s remote for everything.
Whatever connection you choose, you will need the soundbar’s remote to select different input sources.
Being a 2.0 channel soundbar the RIF6 has two inbuilt subwoofer drivers; one for each channel. Each bass speaker sits on one end of the soundbar, next to a companion treble driver. This means that each channel has a treble and bass speaker. The two treble speakers fire forward and inward, creating a virtual center.
RIF6 soundbar review: Sound quality
Soundbars are supposed to enhance the tinny sound from TV speakers. The RIF6 2.0 channel bar does more than that.
For starters, it produces blended, yet detailed audio. You can hear the different elements of your favorite song coming through different points on the RIF6 sound stage. The soundbar goes as far as to define and enhance audio artifacts with adjacent sound frequencies.
Then there’s the bass. Although the soundbar only goes as low as 72Hz, it still manages to produce a convincing thump as it plays a bass-heavy piece of audio. The sound effects of an action movie will sound better than your TV speakers. However, anyone who needs thunderous, rumbling bass should go for a rig with a subwoofer.
Equalizer, sound presets
The remote that ships with the RIF6 2.0 channel sound bar has dedicated buttons that allow you to adjust the bass and treble levels. That’s the extent of the calibration you can do on this soundbar.
The manufacturer also programmed four equalizer presets that push different audio elements to the forefront.
Music mode tries to enhance and blend different sound elements, with a healthy pinch of bass. News mode enhances dialog. Movie mode emphasizes sound effects while trying to keep voice elements from drowning in bass. Then there’s the 3D mode, which tries to simulate surround sound with mixed results.
Audio format support
The RIF6 sound bar will downmix surround sound to stereo.
- Great design with a solid build
- All the inputs and cables you need
- Ease of installation and use
- A digital display and a useful remote make the soundbar easy to use
- Good sound definition
- The bass levels are deep for a 2.0 (standalone) soundbar
- This soundbar is plenty loud
- There is little audio distortion at peak volume
- The user manual is light on information and it’s a good thing that the soundbar is easy to install and operate
- You’ll need the soundbar’s remote to switch between input sources, even with an HDMI-ARC connection
- A minimum frequency of 72Hz limits the bass levels of the RIF6
- The soundbar may work in fits and starts when it comes to streaming apps and you may have to connect to the TV via Bluetooth
- It will work with most, but not all TV remotes
- RIF6 customer service can be unhelpful
RIF6 soundbar review verdict: It’s worth a try
This RIF6 soundbar review uncovers an audio device whose performance is just as impressive as its pricing. If you’re looking for good sound on a budget, then the RIF6 2.0 channel soundbar is a good option. Click here to read more about it.
Frequently asked questions (FAQs) about the RIF6 soundbar
1. How do you choose the HDMI-ARC input?
On the remote, it’s labeled as HD.
2. Does the soundbar have automatic volume adjustment?
No, the soundbar will not lower the volume during action scenes and turn up the volume during dialog scenes
3. Can this soundbar double as a regular speaker?
You can channel sound to the RIF6 soundbar via Bluetooth. You can also connect a device that is not your TV via the RCA-aux cable.
4. Does the soundbar power on automatically when you switch on the TV?
When you use the HDMI-ARC port, the soundbar will activate when the TV comes on. When you turn the TV off, the soundbar won’t always power down. Especially if you switch on the soundbar manually.
5. Does the soundbar put itself to sleep after a period of inactivity?
Yes. If the RIF6 goes a while without an incoming audio signal, it will power down automatically.
6. What do you do if there is no sound when you connect the soundbar via the optical or HDMI port?
Go to your TV settings and select a sound output port that matches the soundbar port that you want to use.
7. Can you use the soundbar in combination with other speakers?
The RIF6 has a selection of ports that receive audio output from connected devices. So it’s possible to slave the soundbar to a second audio device.