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Crutchfield

ZVOX Z-Base 555

Powered home theater sound system and platform for TVs up to 50"

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  • ZVOX Z-Base 555

    Front

  • ZVOX Z-Base 555

    Back

  • ZVOX Z-Base 555

    Disappearing display

  • ZVOX Z-Base 555

  • ZVOX Z-Base 555

  • ZVOX Z-Base 555

  • ZVOX Z-Base 555

    Remote

 

Our take on the ZVOX Z-Base 555

by Marshall Chase
ZVOX

Sound bar speakers: room-filling sound with less clutter

Add big sound to your TV without a roomful of speakers. Sound bars require minimal space and wiring, and their sleek designs complement today's flat-panel TVs. Most sound bars have their own built-in amplification, so you won't need to use a home theater receiver. Some models use advanced surround processing and carefully aimed speaker drivers to simulate the effects of a full home theater audio system.

ZVOX takes your listening to a new level with the Z-Base 555. This compact, pedestal-shaped speaker will give your HDTV the boost in sound quality it deserves. Flexible connection capabilities include analog and digital audio inputs, for both newer and older TVs and gear. Best of all, you'll enjoy clean sound that's surprisingly robust for such a compact, low-profile speaker.

Dialogue reclaimed, commercials tamed
If you can't hear what's being said, it's nearly impossible to follow the story. That's why ZVOX created a dialogue enhancement feature that gives voices new clarity and prominence. What's more, ZVOX knows how sponsors love to blast us out of our seats when they go to a commercial break. Thanks to the Output Leveling feature, the 555 keeps commercials on a short leash so you can just relax.

Everything you need in one low-profile box
This one-piece system houses five full-range speakers, a high-output woofer, and built-in amplification — there's no need to use a separate receiver or run wires to any external speakers. Plus, the 555 is designed to serve as a convenient base for most flat-panel TVs with screen sizes from 26" to 50". Place it directly underneath your TV and you won't have to worry about making extra room for it on your entertainment stand.

Loaded with convenient features
The Z-Base 555 is a great place to plug in your iPod® or portable player for terrific sound. It has a minijack input on the front panel for easy access. The display on the 555 lights up from behind the front cloth grille then disappears when not in use. And the 555 learns the commands of your current TV remote, giving you one less clicker to keep track of. Signal-sensing circuitry powers the system on and off along with your TV.

Highlights:

  • serves as a platform for most flat-panel TVs from 26"-50"
  • TV base should not exceed 27"W or 13"D, and TV should not exceed 90 lbs.
  • PhaseCue II virtual surround sound
  • frequency response 45-20,000 Hz
  • built-in 70-watt (peak power) amplifier
  • five 2" full-range speakers
  • 5-1/4" woofer
  • Dolby® Digital decoding
  • 1 optical digital and 1 coaxial digital audio input
  • 2 stereo RCA analog inputs
  • 1 front-panel minijack input for portable music players
  • auto on/off
  • remote control
  • also learns commands from your TV remote
  • rigid MDF (medium density fiberboard) cabinet
  • 28"W x 3-3/8"H x 16-3/8"D
  • weight: 20 lbs.
  • warranty: 1 year
  • Our 60-day money-back guarantee
 

Hands-on research from the Crutchfield Labs (what are the Labs?)

Features and Specs
General
Enclosure
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Bass Reflex
Pieces in System
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1
Color
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Black
Tweeter
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None
Midrange
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2.0" Cone (x5)
Woofer
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5.25 Cone
Separate Subwoofer
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No
Subwoofer Driver
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None
Bluetooth Connectivity
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No
Wall-mountable
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No
Mounting Bracket Included
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No
Surface Mount Stand Included
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No
Speaker Parts Warranty
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1 Year
Speaker Labor Warranty
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1 Year
Amplifier Parts Warranty
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1 Year
Amplifier Labor Warranty
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1 Year
Specifications
System Frequency Response
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45-20k Hz
Powered System
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Yes
Sound Bar RMS Power
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70 Watts total
Subwoofer RMS Power
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N/A
Audio Inputs
Mini Stereo Audio Inputs
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1
RCA Stereo Audio Inputs
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2
Optical Digital Audio Inputs
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1
Coaxial Digital Audio Inputs
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1
HDMI Audio Video Connections
HDMI Inputs
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None
HDMI Outputs
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None
Dimensions
Sound Bar (inches)
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3-9/16H x 28W x 16-5/16D
Sound Bar Weight
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20 lbs
Subwoofer (inches)
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No Subwoofer
Subwoofer Weight
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N/A
Product Research
What's in the box?

Download owner's manual

  • ZVOX Single cabinet surround system
  • 6' AC power cord
  • Wireless remote control
  • 2 AAA Batteries
  • 6.5' Audio cable (Stereo RCA plugs on both ends)
  • Setup/Operation guide
  • Quick Setup sheet
  • Remote Control instructions

Scratch & Dent items may be missing non-essential accessories. In some cases the manufacturer's accessories have been replaced with generic equivalents.

Our Product Research Team

At Crutchfield, you'll get detailed, accurate information that's hard to find elsewhere. That's because we have our own in-house Product Research team — they open the box, verify contents, check the owner's manual, and record dimensions, features and specs. We stay on top of new products and technologies to help people make informed choices.

Features
Controls
Connections

Features

Overview: The ZVOX Z-Base 555 is a single-cabinet audio system for your flat-panel television. It combines high-quality speakers, a built-in amplifier, a built-in subwoofer, and ZVOX PhaseCue II Virtual Surround Sound processing (enhanced by a Dolby Digital decoder) to give you an easy surround sound solution. Since there are no speaker wires to deal with, you just need to connect the power and audio cables to get started.

TV Compatibility: Most 32"-50" flat-panel TVs can be placed directly on top the Z-Base 555 . The television should weigh 90 lbs or less The TV's pedestal base should not exceed 27" (w) x 13.0" (d).

Class D Amplifier: The ZVOX Z-Base 555 is bi-amplified, using a specially designed, highly-efficient 70 watt Class D amplifier that includes electronic contouring for superb frequency response.

Five 3.25" Drivers: The ZVOX Z-Base 555 uses five 2.0" main speaker drivers that use a long-throw design to create a remarkable wide range, and accurate sound.

5.25" Subwoofers: In addition to the five main speakers, the Z-Base 555 has a single firing high-mass, long-throw 5.25" subwoofers in a ported enclosure.

PhaseCue II Virtual Suround Sound: The Z-Base 555 uses ZVOX's proprietary PhaseCue II virtual surround processing to give you rich, three-dimensional sound with movies or music. PhaseCue II, as its name implies, manipulates the phase of the separate channels to "fool the ear" into believing that sound is coming from a variety of sources throughout the room. The benefits of PhaseCue II vary greatly based on program material. Live music and well-recorded modern movie soundtracks will deliver rich, three-dimensional sound - pulling the sound out from the speakers and into the room, literally surrounding the listener.

  • Music: With music, PhaseCue II creates a very wide soundstage - it literally sounds like you are listening to speakers eight feet apart from each other.
  • Movies: When listening to a good movie, the soundtrack will envelop you - putting you in the middle of the action.
Note: While the virtual surround experience isn't the same as a high-quality 5.1-channel system, the performance is much better than the speakers built-in to most TV's.

Dolby Digital: The unit's two digital inputs work with the built-in Dolby Digital decoder for improved virtual surround performance.

Wood (MDF) Cabinet with Hand-Lacquered Side Panels: The Z-Base 555 features a hand-built cabinet of heavy MDF with beautiful hand-lacquered high gloss end panels. Its low-profile design blends perfectly with most flat-panel TVs.

Disappearing Display: The Z-Base 555 features a four-digit display located behind the speaker grille that shows the current setting for volume, bass/treble, and PhaseCue II (virtual surround). It also shows when you have engaged the Mute, Output Leveling (OL), or Dialog Emphasis (DE) features. A few seconds after you stop using your remote (or front panel) controls, the display disappears completely.

Controls

Dialogue Emphasis (DE): Dialogue Emphasis (DE) provides an easy-to-use and effective method for improving the intelligibility of television dialogue. By pressing the Dialogue Emphasis (DE) function button on the remote control, the system engages a circuit that mimics the functions of a hearing aid. The frequencies used by human voices are dynamically emphasized, while other frequencies are minimized.

Output Leveling (OL): The Output Leveling (OL) function prevents large changes in volume levels. Simply press the Output Leveling (OL) button on the remote control and a sophisticated processor takes over, making soft sounds louder and loud sounds softer, so there are fewer jarring moments when switching channels or when commercials come on. This system also helps by boosting the audio levels from a DVD or Blu Ray player that is not loud enough.

Surround Settings: You can adjust the level of PhaseCue II virtual surround processing effect. You can select from Surround One (low effect), Surround Two (moderate effect), Surround Three (strong effect).

Tone Control: The bass control has a range from -8 to 4. The treble control has a range from -4 to 4.

Remote Control: The included wireless remote has controls for power, mute, volume, PhaseCue II effect level, bass & treble level. and DE/OL functions.

Programmable: The new Z-Base 555 can be programmed to respond to your remote control. The illuminated display walks you through a less-than-a-minute programming cycle. Then your TV remote, cable box remote, or satellite receiver remote can control volume, mute, power and input functions of the ZVOX system.

Auto Standby: The Z-Base 555 will enter a low-power Standby mode after approximately 5 minutes of no audio signal.

Connections

One Cable Connection: The Z-Base 555 requires only one connection cable. You can use either analog or digital connection options to your television.

Audio Inputs: The ZVOX Z-Base 555 offers analog and digital audio inputs.

  • Digital Input: The Z-Base 555 is equipped with a coaxial digital (single RCA) and an optical digital (Toslink) input. The digital inputs will accept either 2-channel PCM or Dolby Digital bitstream signals.
  • Analog Input: The Z-Base 555 has two rear-panel stereo RCA analog inputs and a front-panel 3.5mm analog audio input.

Subwoofer Output: An optional powered subwoofer can be connected using the full-range single RCA Sub Output on the back panel.

Remote Control Input: This jack is reserved for ZVOX service only.

 
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ZVOX Z-Base 555 Reviews

Average Customer Review:

91 people say:

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Filter by rating:
5 out of 5

Big, big improvement!

Written By RodC, Sacramento, CA on Tuesday, April 08, 2014
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Huge improvement over the TV speakers! Very happy with my purchase.
Pros:
Great sound, compact fits well under TV, not a bunch of wires everywhere.
Cons:
None so far.
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5 out of 5

ZVOX 555

Written By Bob G., Sumter SC on Sunday, March 23, 2014
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Very pleased with this unit, I own two. I initially bought a Bose Solo and it was adequate. But it lacked the punch I wanted for a larger room with a vaulted ceiling. So I put the Bose in my wife's office and purchased two 555's on the reviews. I have not been disappointed; they sound clear and have much more adjustability than the Bose. I feel they also have more punch than the Bose, with clearer sound.
Pros:
Bass and treble adjustments, volume, and settings indicator that disappears on time delay. Robust unit with deep clear sound. Easy setup and install, I'm using a fiber optic input and it sounds great and decreases clutter.
Cons:
A little pricy for what it is, compared to other units
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5 out of 5

Great speaker for the price

Written By RickB, Los Angeles, CA. on Thursday, March 13, 2014
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
I was looking for a speaker that would enhance dialogue, which is a problem on many broadcasts. This speaker does a great job in that regard. Setup is a snap; it takes just a few minutes to connect. Sound quality is very good.
Pros:
Easy setup, great for enhancing dialogue
Cons:
Only comes with RCA cables
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1 out of 5

Superb sound and design. Don't buy ZVOX.

Written By ef, Boston, MA on Saturday, March 08, 2014
 
Fabulous sound, crisp & clear at low and high volumes. The design is equally impressive like the disappearing display, learning remote and enhanced dialog.

Sadly, it failed after 5 months. Just quit producing sound. Turning it off & on got me another 20 seconds of sound and then nothing. foolishly, I ignored the many people who posted the same experience. Don't you be fooled, too. There is clearly a quality control problem at ZVOX and they are unable or unwilling to fix it.
Pros:
great sound. cool features.
Cons:
dead as a doorknob after 5 months of light use. Really don't want to do the warranty dance.
2 out of 2 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Great Sound system replacement

Written By Scott, Elk Grove, Ca on Saturday, March 01, 2014
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Great sound for the money. Removed five speakers and sub and this system sounds just as good if not better. Great shelf for tv to sit on as well. Very clean solid look. Easy to program DTV remote as well.
Cons:
None
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5 out of 5

Huge improvement with ZVOX Z-Base 555

Written By David, Lafayette, CO on Sunday, February 16, 2014
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
We just bought a new 39" flat-panel LED TV to upgrade from our 17-year old tube TV. The flat-panel TVs have terrible built-in speakers - at maximum volume, I still couldn't hear some of the dialogue. I wanted a sound bar to improve things but most models would have blocked not only the remote control sensor but also part of the screen itself. The ZVOX Z-Base 555 solves this problem by serving as a base for the TV itself. Sound quality is outstanding and now I can hear dialogue better with the dialogue emphasis feature. I've never turned the volume all the way up because it would probably blow out my eardrums and shatter the windows in our small TV room, but at my preferred normal listening volume level everything sounds great, from the lows to the highs. This is everything I was looking for in one affordable package and a much cleaner solution than multiple speakers, subwoofers, etc. of a true surround-sound stereo system.
Pros:
Great bass, output leveling and dialogue emphasis features work great, very attractive appearance, easy to set up, works with the TV remote, does not block screen or remote sensor.
Cons:
None
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5 out of 5

z555

Written By Bill, United States on Wednesday, February 12, 2014
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Very pleased with the sound bar. Voices are very clear and i can clearly hear talking with music being played in background. Would highly recommend this sound bar.
Pros:
Easy setup do not notice on the tv stand. Excellent sound talking and music.
Cons:
No problem with anything.
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4 out of 5

Nice, simple audio upgrade!

Written By Oaknell, Tappan, NY on Sunday, January 26, 2014
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Good sound from a simple upgrade.
Pros:
I am no audiophile, but to me this upgrade was a great way to vastly improve the sound from my Samsung TV. Hookup could not have been easier using the optical audio jack. It also blends in with the TV in an inauspicious manner.
Cons:
None.
1 out of 1 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

ZVOX Z-Base 555

Written By Frank C., Ridgway, Co. on Friday, January 24, 2014
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Very well built with Great sound! Easily supports our 32" screen T V. Instructions were very clear and a snap to hook up. Several adjustments make listening a pleasure.
Pros:
Quality, great sound, several adjustments, and easy to install.
Cons:
None to date
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4 out of 5

Like part of the TV

Written By David R, Manassas, VA on Monday, January 20, 2014
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Easy setup, just as they said. Used optical cable. Even more sturdy than expected. Sounds great -- voices are clarified, tonal quality settings cover what is needed, plenty of inputs, volume is enough for a large room, no hissing, and so on... I don't like a lot of bass I didn't connect a subwoofer. It is not surround sound but it fits the purpose I had in mind. I like the sound projected toward me just like the video, not all over me. Hooked a table-top HD radio (RCA/phono cable) to it and have rich sound from my local stations, just like I did from my old analog receiver. This thing looks like it is part of the TV. FIOS remote control works with the volume. I think the Wii sounds better too.
Pros:
Easy setup Easy remote control Great sound and control Voice clarification feature
Cons:
Some settings revert to default between uses
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3 out of 5

ZVOX 555

Written By DougH, Afton, MN on Sunday, January 19, 2014
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Unit offers a definite improvement over speakers in my 40" Samsung. Setup was easy and directions were very clear. Was able to sync ZVOX remote to TV in less than a minute. Purchased a digital optical cable separately based on other reviews and was surprised to see one included in the box along with standard analog cables, requiring a unplanned return trip to the store. Dialog enhancement feature works well.
Pros:
Unit looks good, install was easy, directions were clear, and sound is clearly an improvement over TV speakers.
Cons:
Output leveling does little to consistently level the output either within a channel or when flipping between channels. Occasionally hear a "tinny" resonating sound for certain voices... one newscaster's voice is particularly bad. Have tried adjusting bass and treble settings to minimize it, but still am not able to totally eliminate it.
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5 out of 5

Quality product that works well

Written By Steve O, San Francisco, CA on Monday, January 06, 2014
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
The ZVOX was easy to set up and connect to the TV. Had to buy a digital audio cable though as the product only came with an RCA audio cable. The sound is much improved. I would buy this product again and definitely recommend it to anyone looking for an easy way to get better sound. The dialogue enhancement feature works great.
Pros:
Easy to install.
Cons:
none
2 out of 2 people found this helpful
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4 out of 5

555 review

Written By BobbyfH, Keysville, VA on Sunday, January 05, 2014
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
The sound is very impressive. I replaced a 3 JBL speaker/ Onkyo amplifier system with the 555. The sound is crisp and clean with no noticeable distortion but I don't really crank the sound up anymore; I'm 61 years old! I was able to connect an older Vizio TV/DVD/CD player using a coax and HDMI cable. Unfortunately, my CD player has no coax capability so had to use the red/white analog connection.
Pros:
the sound, capacity to connect various audio/video devices
Cons:
the instructions very basic. could have used more indepth instruction.
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5 out of 5

ZVOX Z-Base 555

Written By 57vdub, Honolulu, HI on Thursday, January 02, 2014
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Super easy to set up! I had it up and running in less than 10 minutes. The sound didn't blow me away but it fits my needs perfectly. Looks like it is well built even if it was made in China. I would gladly pay a little more for it to be MADE in the USA!
Pros:
Super easy set up. Crutchfield's tech support and free shipping!
Cons:
Sound is 6/10 for music but a 8.5/10 for TV dialog
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5 out of 5

Good Product

Written By MikeS, Green Valley, AZ on Tuesday, December 31, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
My 47" LG TV had decent, but not great sound. However, I wanted a little better. I didn't have room for a sound bar (and subwoofer), so did some research on on sound bases. The ZVOX 555 satisfies my need. It doesn't sound as good as when I run the audio thru my all-separate-components stereo system, but also doesn't take all the time that turning on the whole system and resetting switches does every time I turn on the TV. In short, I'm a reasonably "happy camper".
Pros:
Reasonably good sound (better than the TV speakers); easy to use.
Cons:
Nothing worth mentioning.
1 out of 3 people found this helpful
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4 out of 5

zvox 550

Written By John R, Seneca, SC on Sunday, December 22, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Adds just enough base and treble to give you some quality sound. Love the speech enhancement button for certain tv shows.
Pros:
good sound enhancement.
Cons:
could use a larger sub woofer
2 out of 3 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Experience True Sound

Written By DennisR, Winchester, VA on Tuesday, December 17, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
I purchase model 550 a couple of years ago for the bedroom and the sound is super. This new one the model 555 for the living room, and the new improved features will blow your mind. It's the best one box sound system.
Pros:
This one box system with the Monster Cable 400dfo will give you sound as good or better then other multi-speaker systems. The price is great also. Easy to set up.
Cons:
none
3 out of 4 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

ZVOX Z-Base 555

Written By Rich F, Summerfielf, Fl on Tuesday, December 17, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Very easy set-up and does everything as promised. The voice enhancer really works well and the movies sound very good.
Pros:
easy setup, good sound and looks nice under the TV, Remote learn Function.
Cons:
None right now
4 out of 4 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

ZVOX Z-Base 555

Written By Bill S, Muskego,WI on Wednesday, December 11, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Nice sound and easy to setup with the Sony TV. Also very easy to setup with my Time Warner Cable remote. Ordered the 555 and 3 days later it was hooked up to the TV. The TV speakers would hurt my ears when the wife had it turned up so she could hear it. Now it's a nice rich sound and no complaints.
Pros:
great sound and easy setup
Cons:
none
2 out of 2 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

ZVOX Z-Base 555

Written By terry, angola,in. on Wednesday, December 11, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
replaced a polk surround bar with this,can hear voices much better and really like the clean look, hook up was easy and programming remote super easy.
2 out of 2 people found this helpful
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4 out of 5

Reviews for the ZVOX Z-Base 555

Written By VinceC, Ashland, OR on Friday, November 22, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
I can finally hear dialog by just using my hearing aids. (My wife doesn't like the volume as loud as I do.) The audio from my HDTV was so bad, I had to use 'TV Ears' Now they are unnecessary.
Pros:
Great voice clarity. This sound bar is a must for all those thin HDTV's with poor audio.
Cons:
Does not come with an instruction manual. I wanted to get rid of the base reverberating in other parts of the room, but am not sure how to do it. I don't know how to use "Input" or what those signals on the 555 mean.
4 out of 4 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

ZVOX 555

Written By rich, Central PA on Wednesday, November 20, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Love it. Does exactly what we wanted it to do. It helps enhance the TV dialogue. Only things missing - I wish it had Bluetooth and cheap that they do not include a digital optical cable.
Pros:
Good sound. Simple hookup. Dialogue enhancement feature.
Cons:
No blue tooth and no digital cable
3 out of 3 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Excellent Product

Written By MLC, Sullivan NH on Thursday, November 14, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
I recently moved and could not use my Sound Bar. After talking with my Crutchfield Advisor, I decided to give this a try. What great advice. The sound is excellent. It was very simple to install - one cable and one power cord! The hardest part was lifting the TV. The 555 is pretty good size and you might want to double check the dimensions for placement but a really great product. I am still working on all the possible setups, including speech enhancement, but very pleased.
Pros:
Great sound Easy to assemble Easy to use
Cons:
None that I have found
2 out of 3 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Zvoxx Base 555

Written By Kevin, 21219 on Thursday, November 07, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
An amazing sound now reverberates my family room. I am so pleased with this. Easy to hook up. Theater sound in 5 minutes. Worth the expense.
Pros:
Sound quality and easy install.
Cons:
None
2 out of 2 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Great Product

Written By JanG, Dyersburg, TN on Wednesday, November 06, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
My husband had almost stopped watching TV because he could not hear or understand the dialogue clearly even with hearing aids, so I went on the great search for something that would help him enjoy TV more. I considered a Bose and started reading reviews. The ZVOX Z-Base 555 was mentioned in several reviews as a better product, so I researched that and decided to buy it. I was really surprised at how easy it was to set up and program my ATT Uverse remote to operate the volume . I am 65 and my husband is 76 so we are not really tech smart. We have been very pleased with this product especially the dialogue enhancement and I love that our 42" Vizio sits neatly on top of the box. It looks like they were purchased together.
Pros:
Very good instructions for easy set up. Great sound
Cons:
None
8 out of 8 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

ZVOX Z-Base 555

Written By JimR, Alpharetta, GA on Sunday, October 20, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Great for dialogue enhancement, even in a large room. GREAT for Senior citizens and those who have difficulty listening to dialogue from their existing audio speakers...
Pros:
Dialogue enhancement
Cons:
Not the best setup for surround sound.
6 out of 6 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Great Sound!

Written By JanB, Mesa, AZ on Thursday, October 17, 2013
 
This is a great product. It is easy to set up, the sound is great, the dialog is much easier to understand. Looks good under the TV-better than a sound bar.
Pros:
Easy to set up
Cons:
Should have been suggested to buy the optical cable that I needed to set it up.
7 out of 7 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

ZVOX Z-Base 555

Written By Marion s, Dedham, MMa on Monday, August 19, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Good sound. Simple to install and operate.
2 out of 2 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

WoofWoof!

Written By Howler, Big Bear CA on Friday, July 19, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
BIG SOUND! Echo throughout the mountain! Paired with 55" Panasonic Viera, The sound is awesome
Pros:
Heavy duty, nice piece of furniture! This box blows the competition away
Cons:
The ZVox555 is US integrity that has been outsourced to China BUT with a hefty price tag. We need to demand that our ideas and thier manufacturing be brought back to the United States!
5 out of 7 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Great Soundbar

Written By Bad Ankle Bill, Cazenovia, NY on Tuesday, July 09, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Looking for something to facilitate my wife's difficulty in hearing tv dialogue. Complicated as an axe. Did a lot of shopping around, reading of reviews. Tipping point was simplicity/quality/ease of use of remote. The sound is gre"Scratch and Dentat. We usually listen at level 12 out of 30. Dialogue Emphasis feature works well. Output Leveling works well. We usually leave Surround Settings on 1, as other settings seem to decrease ability to understand dialogue. Played iPhone/Pandora flawlessly with reasonable sound. Bass is acceptable for our needs. Great deal as I bought Scratch and Dent and arrived good as new-so saved $60! Great sound bar!
Pros:
Good sound, ease of use, nice features, grew remote, ease of using cable remote for sound level
Cons:
Surround sound not great for dialogue
6 out of 6 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Dynamic sound...reasonable price.

Written By RWJ, South Amboy, NJ on Friday, July 05, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
I recently purchased and hooked up a new ZVOX Z-Base 555 to my SHARP Quattron 46" LCD. I was replacing a twelve year old Bose 321 that had lost it's 5.1 surround mode, output was reduced to only 2.0 stereo, it had lost that full rich dynamic sound I so enjoyed. I wanted to replace the tired old Bose unit and de-clutter the mass of wires behind, around, and under my TV stand at the same time. Did a lot of research online and in stores then decided to give the ZVOX Z-Base 555 a shot. After tweeking the modes and functions of the ZVOX unit I was able to attain almost the same quality dynamic room filling sound that the 321 had provided so well for so many years. Keep in mind the ZVOX is only a simulated surround sound unit not a 5.1 but with adjustments comes very close effects wise and basically matches the quality of sound. A pleasant surprise I must admit. All around very happy with the purchase, this is a quality product.
Pros:
Full range dynamic room filling simulated surround sound. Voice enhancement modes come in very handy when needed. Fits nicely under TV. Well made and nice looking.
Cons:
Remote has no channel change function so one must use a separate remote for that. No Digital Optical cable included.
10 out of 10 people found this helpful
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3 out of 5

Compact Home Theater Sound

Written By Charlesk, Laurel Springs, NJ on Monday, July 01, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Since traditional sound bars were too tall to fit under my Panasonic 50 inch TV, the Zvox was the best solution. Its design is really the best feature, as the actual sound produced is good but some other home theater systems but better than one would expect from a single box. A good
Pros:
Design, overall appearance
Cons:
Sound is good but not great
4 out of 4 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Incredible Sound and Value!!

Written By Fred, California on Saturday, June 22, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
This device should be a must have for every recent flat screen TV, with small built-in speakers, sitting on a stand. I am using mine in a guest bedroom with a 40" Samsung LED.

I listened to this and Bose One in the showroom, there is NO comparison, even without a sub-woofer Zvox 555 is meaningfully superior, in my opinion.

Center channel speech is very clear in Surround 1, but if some source really needs help Dialog Emphasis should make any listener happy.

It is hard to know how Zvox put so much sound and technology into this product at only $399. In my opinion, this unit is competitive with much higher priced sound bars.
Pros:
Excellent spacious sound; Flexibility to control sound; 3 surround modes, dialog emphasis, treble, and base; digital display
Cons:
No optical digital cable included
3 out of 3 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Love my new ZVOX Z-Base 555!

Written By JerryB, Boca Raton, FL on Thursday, May 16, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
I am delighted with the ZVOX Z-Base 555. For the past year, my wife and have relied on the speakers in our 55" Samsung flat screen TV while listening to the dialogue on many of our favorite shows and it has been a struggle, especially conversations with various dialects. I sought advice from Buddy, one of the terrific members of Crutchfield's teach support team, and after telling him my budget, he immediately recommended the ZVOX. I placed my order, two days later it arrived, and I had it installed and operating in 30 minutes. The sound is light years better than what I was listening to before and dialogue is now crystal clear. I highly recommend the ZVOX 555.
Pros:
Crystal clear sound and very easy installation
Cons:
Does not come with an optical cable. I found this out when I read many of the reviews, so I purchased the optical cable before the ZVOX arrived and was ready for the quick connection.
9 out of 9 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Makes a difference

Written By Louis, Rochester, NY on Tuesday, May 07, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Delivers as advertised. The speech enhancement feature "clears away" back ground noise. And, again, the service at Crutchfield is outstanding. The first unit was defective, but the replacement arrived 48 later. The service tech assisted with setup, and accepted return of the digital cable which my Sony Bravia audio output made unusable.
4 out of 4 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Great, but one missing feature

Written By Anonymous, Pittsboro, NC on Wednesday, April 24, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
We chose this instead of a regular sound bar because of the limited space in front of the TV. Setup was super simple and fast. The sound is of course worlds better than the TV's speakers. The bass from the kids watching cartoons actually woke us up one morning. The auto power off is great. Now for the missing feature, auto power on. It would be nice if the power came back on when audio was detected. I guess it doesn't to reduce the amount of energy used.
Pros:
Easy setup Good sound Auto power off
Cons:
No auto power on
4 out of 4 people found this helpful
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3 out of 5

OK product, horrible documentation

Written By GC, Hampstead, MD on Monday, April 22, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
I need to begin by making clear that I am far from an expert. I just knew the sound on my new (Panasonic) TV was weak at best. The sound on this unit is, in my opinion, very good, enjoyable at least to my untrained ear and I guess that is what you buy this product for. However, it is supposed to have a sound leveling feature to level the volume between different inputs and channels which is very annoying and would be quite useful if it worked. Even on the same station there times when the sound between program and commercial is vastly different, let alone between different channels and inputs. This unit does NOTHING to even that out. There is also a setting that emphasizes speech, which again might be nice, but I can't tell if the function is on or off (ditto the sound leveling function) add to the confusion that some of these functions cancel one another out. With all this said you may think, just read the instructions-they are worthless. In fairness, the instructions are good at telling you how to set up the unit and correlating the unit with your TV's remote but as to using the various features on this unit, forget it.
Pros:
Very good sound quality Good coordination with your TVs remote
Cons:
Lacking documentation Sound leveling function is worthless Confusing as to whether the different functions are on or off
Crutchfield response on Wednesday, April 24, 2013
We forwarded this review to our Technical Support team for follow-up. Lifetime tech support comes with every Crutchfield purchase.
12 out of 16 people found this helpful
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4 out of 5

ZVOX Z-Base 555

Written By RickS, Hollywood, FL on Monday, April 15, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
We were torn between the Bose and ZVOX product to improve our TV audio without lots of boxes and wires. The features and controls of the ZVOX is why we selected that product.
Pros:
Great sound, clear voices, easy to hookup, very easy to control from our Comcast remote, looks great under our 46" flat screen TV
Cons:
Volume control is too coarce, bass and treble settings make little difference, mute indicator does not stay on, no indicator light when the unit is on
9 out of 10 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

audio music lover

Written By Mario L, San Diego, california on Monday, April 15, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
easy to use,great sound, a cool appearance
Pros:
quality
Cons:
none
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5 out of 5

Great sound!

Written By skifishvail, Vail, CO on Wednesday, March 20, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Great sound and easy hook up.
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5 out of 5

ZVOX Z-Base 555

Written By Anonymous, Orange, ca on Tuesday, February 12, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Excellent sound, the sound of this unit fills a large room very nicely.
Pros:
Simple, no additional sub needed, awesome sound quality, it is able to be programmed to function using universal remote.
Cons:
The unit is kind of large, with that said it fits perfectly for my application.
3 out of 3 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Z-Base 555

Written By JF, Columbus, OH on Monday, February 11, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Works as expected. The sound quality for speech is a big help for my "golden-age" ears. And turning on the dialogue enhancement makes it even clearer. (I am not the one to judge how good it sounds for music.) Setup was easy. As other reviews have noted, the cable is not included for the optical digital input. It easily learned the commands (Volume, Mute, Power) from our remote. It also has its own remote control, but you really only need that remote to turn on/off its special features such as dialogue enhancement. So it doesn't really add the confusion of an additional remote for your life. More than I wanted to spend, but it seems to be worth it.
Pros:
Dialogue is much clearer.
Cons:
It is a rectangular box designed to sit under a LCD. If you have one of the new very thin LED screens, the shape may not work for you. But, under our fluorescent LCD of a few years ago it is fine. There are a few control buttons on the front. They are very small and recessed below the speaker grill. That makes them impossible too see unless you are crouching on the floor. Fortunately you don't really need to use them. But, kids might poke them and change settings (e.g. mute or input).
8 out of 8 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Awesome

Written By Ray, Hemet CA on Monday, February 04, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
This is an awesome sound system!!! We are delighted with its richness! Fifteen minutes to install and setup and a great price!
5 out of 5 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

ZVOX Z-Base 555

Written By Jim, San Antonio, TX on Thursday, January 17, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Needed better sound on my new Sony HDTV and this sure filled the bill. Great sound.
Pros:
Real easy to setup and program
Cons:
none
6 out of 6 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

ZVOX Z-Base 555

Written By Budarp, Shrewsbury, MA on Saturday, December 29, 2012
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
The Z-Base 555 is my second purchase of a ZVOX speaker system, this time a smaller unit for my second 40" TV panel. I find the peak power output to be perfectly sufficient in my large office area, 310sqft, enjoy the very noticable Dialog Enhance feature and continue to enjoy the Surround (formerly Phase Que) feature. Starting with my purchase of the largest system two years ago I continue to much favor these one box systems. Judgeing from the appearance of such systems from high priced competitors I am not alone in preferring the simplicity yet high performance of the ZVOX systems.
Pros:
High performance, competitive pricing, simple yet stylish design, minimal standby power.
Cons:
Cannot think of any.
10 out of 10 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

ZVOX Z-Base 555

Written By D, Logan, Oh on Friday, December 28, 2012
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Generally, very well pleased with this unit. Easy setup and use with the instructions and a little help from Crutchfield. I could tell more about the sound if the wife would let me turn the volume up.
Pros:
Nice looking base without a bunch of extra wires and speakers to deal with.
Cons:
While the surround sound is good I suspect addtitional speakers would make it sound even better.
5 out of 7 people found this helpful
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4 out of 5

ZVOX 555

Written By Ken B, Cincinnati, OH on Thursday, December 27, 2012
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Really helps the hard of hearing separate the increasingly louder background music from dialogue. I'm very happy with my decision.
Pros:
Dialogue enhancement button works
Cons:
too large a change on up/down volume changes
11 out of 11 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

ZVOX 555 Soundbar

Written By AndrewP, Orange, CT on Sunday, December 16, 2012
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Pleased after two-week's ownership. Sound output quality is an impressive improvement over built-in speakers of my flat-panel TV.
3 out of 4 people found this helpful
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4 out of 5

ZXOX Z-Base 555

Written By Bob, Menomonie Wi on Tuesday, December 11, 2012
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
The product is awesome. The sound is exceptional and the price comparitive to others such as Bose etc. I would buy again but would call with any questions beforehand.
Pros:
Great sound and easy to use remote. Display is nice on the front. Shuts itself off if not used which I felt is a nice feature.
Cons:
NO OPTICAL CABLE PROVIDED. Advertisment says "Just plug it in and go." Not so fast. No optical cord is provided! I had to run to WalMart in the dead of night to make the proper connections. Other than that the product was "as advertised". I think they could throw inthe stupid cable or at least say it's not provided.
11 out of 11 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Very Satisfied

Written By JR, Baltimore MD on Sunday, December 09, 2012
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
This Zvox 555 sound bar is great. We needed something to help the clarity of the dialogue on our television and this sound bar is perfect. There are three adjustments and changes are made easily with the remote. Set up was easy for us (we are sometimes challanged in that area and have to call in our son to help) and we were able to set it up and program our current remote to control the sound bar as well. I like the fact that it sits under the TV rather than in front of it, which makes it feel like part of the stand and less like another piece of equipment. Very satisfied with the sound bar and we continue to be satisfied with Crutchfield's advisors and products.
Pros:
Greatly improves the sound of our television. Easy set up.
Cons:
none that I can see
5 out of 5 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Zvox 555

Written By stanlsc1, Hampton, SC on Friday, November 30, 2012
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
This is a must with any of the new LED-LCD SUPER THIN televisions. You will need something that is an improvement over factory TV speakers. Instead of buying a sound bar and separate speakers consider the Zvox 555 it has all the sound you need in one convenient box. Commercials are no problem and low tones or voices are crystal clear! Almost bought the Bose, but there were too many bad reviews.
Pros:
Great sound! You can listen to the news, watch a movie or listen to music from your iPhone! This is a great system!
Cons:
None so far.
6 out of 6 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

ZVOX Z-Base 555 & Crutchfield's Buying Experience

Written By Garfield2012, San Jose, CA on Friday, November 30, 2012
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Purchasing my ZVOX 555 from Crutchfield was as perfect as it can get. Their great communication and fast shipping is second to none!

I've had my unit for over a week now, and I can say without question that it improved the sound quality of my Panasonic plasma TV. It exceeded my expectations of what it could do, and I am very happy I chose the ZVOX over other type of sound bars that I had considered. The unit has plenty of sound setting options, and after trying several, I found the one that works best for my needs.
Pros:
The minute you pick up this unit, you can tell by the weight it is not cheaply constructed. The unique design and dimensions set it apart from sound bars. The built in sub woofer is fully adjustable, and you can fine tune it to your listening preference.
Cons:
If I had to give one, I would suggest the manufacturer ship it with an optical cable, as most new TVs all have this connection.
5 out of 5 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Improved "Voices"

Written By don, Colchester, VT on Tuesday, November 13, 2012
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Fantatstically fast delivery from Crutchfield and really beautiful IMPROVED SOUND from this speaker box unit. The Panasonic TV speakers just could NOT delivery voice clarity over the background sounds in many of todays TV Series shows. Hooking up the ZVOX-555 was easy and quick. I used an optical cable rather than the RCA type connector cable that came with the delivered ZVOX and the optical cable worked out perfectly. Sound quality to our ears was improved the minute I turned the ZVOX "on". Loudness is there at low settings and you can get the voices to pop-out from the background sounds. It's easy to set-up and adjust bass and tenor if you so choose. Nice looking unit, though a little larger in length than I would have liked. I'm very pleased with the unit, and with Crutchfield.
Pros:
exceptional voice enhancement, good looking unit, powerful sound for/in a family room, easy set-up
Cons:
should come with a digital optical cable
5 out of 5 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

ZVOX Z-Base 555

Written By John, Hawaii on Sunday, November 04, 2012
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Very easy to set up. Sounds much better than the bar speakers on my Sony TV. Takes a while to get exactly what you need in the way of speech v surround, but so much neater and easier than my receiver and the six speakers that I used before.
Pros:
So simple and uncluttered, and easier to use than the rather complicated home theater stuff.
Cons:
The sound level button is very sensitive, and goes from soft to loud very easily, jumping numbers.
4 out of 4 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Easy

Written By Stroud, New Bern, NC on Friday, September 21, 2012
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
It took longer to unpack this unit than it did to hook it up and get get it running. My DirecTV remote was programmed in less than 5 minutes. Sounds great for what I'm using it for. Much better than the TV speakers. It won't replace my 7.1 system but it sure make the bedroom TV sound great.

Pros:
Easy hookup and setup
Cons:
No digital cable included. Might be an issue for someone who does not have an extra one on hand.
4 out of 4 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Impressive!

Written By RayM, Phoenix, AZ on Wednesday, August 29, 2012
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Sounds great and works perfectly for what I wanted. I've had several soundbars and this easily beats them all. The sound is great, you can control it with your regular remote, it's easy to hook up, and has just enough adjustments to get the sound the way you want it without overwhelming you. I like the complicated 5.1 or 7.1 systems as much as anyone, but the wife and kids never use them because they can't figure everything out. This unit solves all that without sacrificing the quality.
7 out of 7 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

great voice quality, small footprint

Written By Sandi, Sarasota, FL on Saturday, July 14, 2012
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
We downsized & gave away our 5.1 surround sound. We have a small tiled room off the kitchen and couldn't get discernible sound. Our Bravia's sound is horrible, my husband has hearing loss and we set the level to 50+ to hear what was being said. Even then it was difficult and the commercials were painfully loud. I called Crutchfield and the tech asked me some questions and recommended this product. It works! The sound is clear now with just an 11 vol level. We find ourselves not FFing through the commercials because the volume is normalized and they capture our interest. The hardest part was the audio cable connection. I called Sony and was told I needed to use an optical cable from the TV to the Zvox. We got one and it didn't work. Another 20 minutes with Sony helpline and they finally told me to try directly from TiVo to Zvox. That worked, (I already knew that but I wanted to go from the Sony TV because of the Zvox auto volume shut off.) The Bravio model has no Pass Through Setting and Sony Support didn't know that. Anyway, it works directly from the TiVo box and when TiVo is paused or stopped the volume also stops. I then need to hit the Tivo volume up/down to make the Zvox power up- it doesn't turn on automatically with a direct TiVo connection but that's not a problem for us. I then spent 1+ hrs searching for TiVo codes. Finally I went to the Zvox site and found a video. The video explained it well & within 2 minutes my TiVo remotes were in control of the Zvox
Pros:
Set up in minutes, clear conversation for TV programs, audio normalized in commercials, Zvox powers off even when connected to TiVo box instead of to TV.
Cons:
Instructions not clear as to how to program TiVo remote to control volume. Internet search on TiVo is misleading- you do not need to enter codes into a TiVo Premier remote- just pair it to the Zvox using IR. Go to Zvox website and watch the short video to get the correct information on how to do that.
7 out of 7 people found this helpful
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4 out of 5

Z-Base 555

Written By EricM, Escondido, CA on Saturday, June 16, 2012
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
This unit is well made, looks good, and blends well with other dark-colored video equipment. Sound is good. Maybe not as good as I had hoped, but still good.
Pros:
Appearance; Excellent remote 'learning' process; Ability to fit under a TV
Cons:
Could use more treble boost.
2 out of 3 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Excellent!

Written By John W, Grand Rapids, MI on Sunday, May 20, 2012
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Bought this for the living room HDTV which has to fit in an entertainment center. The sound is spectacular for our space and the best part.... My wife is no longer putting flower pots everywhere to hide my speakers.
Pros:
Great sound. No nest of wires. No holes to drill and nothing to hang. It was Chad, one of the Crutchfield guys, who convinced me that this was the right unit for my needs. He was right on!
Cons:
None
3 out of 3 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

ZVOX Z-BASE 555

Written By John N, Ashaway RI on Thursday, May 03, 2012
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
I just received My ZVOX Z BASE 555 Yesterday. Really fast delivery time. 2 days. Took exactly 10 min to unwrap and set up, under My Samsung LCD flat panel TV. My wife and I were both stunned with the sound, coming from the ZVOX Unit. We have a DVR from Our Cable provider, with HD Service. The Picture Quality was always great, but now the Sound makes it awesome.
Pros:
It's all that's advertised,
Cons:
None so far
2 out of 2 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Great center channel

Written By Jerry, Roseburg Oregon on Sunday, April 29, 2012
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
We all know why your reading reviews as I was, the small ribbon speakers on LCD's is well, somewhat to be desired. I mostly purchased this for better sound watching TV only, but then wondered? I turn on my stereo system watching movies having two tower speakers and an amp that pumps out 250wpc. I never hooked up the surround (someday, haha) and decided to try the ZVOX as the center using my stereo. Ran a cable from my Oppo center to my Sunfire processor center to the analog imput #1 on the ZVOX. When I select this input I can use the volume to bring out the center vocals and it worked Great!! I did have to purchase the optical cable (not included) to hook up TV>ZVOK and also in TV setting's had to select "external speakers". If you don't do this you will still have the TV speaker wanting to play. Set-up was extremely easy, 5 min. programing and you ready to go.
Pros:
Easy set-up, worked great for center channel, the unit hides itself, don't even know it's there.
Cons:
The surround modes are a little muffled, but surround mode 1 works for me. After programming your remotes one more learning button for input would be nice. When I use the center channel > analog input #1 I have to use the ZVOX remote or panel on unit to select this. No biggie, just another remote I have to use.
4 out of 5 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Rich Sound!

Written By FannD, Lima, OH on Monday, April 23, 2012
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Noticed some saying they were disappointed with the bass. I find it more than adequate for a small living room, and see no need for a subwoofer! This is, however, subjective, and adding a subwoofer would be a simple solution. Although my 2 year old Samsung, 42" LCD HD TV provides an awsome picture, it's audio was flat and tinny. The size of the room does not allow for external speakers, or for a sub woofer, and even a mounted soundbar would have presented location problems. The ZVOX was a perfect solution! I did not expect the quality of sound of a theater system, but was surprised by the full, rich sound of the ZVOX! The voice enhancer is a special plus for my partially deaf husband, who had the ZVOX installed in about 5 minutes! I'll be calling Crutchfield for help with getting my cable remote to work with my ZVOX.
Pros:
Quality of sound, easy installation, ongoing tech support, under the TV placement.
Cons:
A little pricey
5 out of 5 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

ZVOX Z-Base 555

Written By Keith S., Phoenix, AZ on Saturday, April 21, 2012
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
From out of the box to up and running took about 5 minutes. My wife loves this unit. It is attached to her LG 42" TV. These devices are installed in our master bedroom. The LG TV speakers were so bad (tinny) that my wife had to crank up the volume (level 46) to try and hear the actors voices. I could hear her TV blasting throughout the house. Now, with the ZVOX Z-Base 555 she turns the volume down to almost the lowest setting (6) and the voices of the actors are clear and understandable. I set up our ZVOX output for enhanced voices versus the surround sound option. This is done very easily using the ZVOX remote control device included in the purchase price.
Pros:
LG TV sits nicely on top of the ZVOX Z-Base 555. Hook up was a breeze. I plugged in the power cord and used one digital optical cable to connect the TV to the ZVOX unit. We have a Direct TV satellite dish and receiver providing our television signal.
Cons:
Not really an issue, but I did call Crutchfield tech support and asked them to help me set up my Direct TV remote to control volume on the ZVOX. I had read other reviews and the reviewers suggested contacting Crutchfield for the tricks to an easy set up. The adviser emailed me the directions and then walked me through the process. It took about 2 minutes to program the remote.
2 out of 2 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Great Addition To My 50" Plasma

Written By SDL, Memphis, TN on Sunday, April 01, 2012
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Made a HUGE improvement to the aweful sound from the tv stock speakers........Have used to aux port to play music from my ipod and the music sounds great! Easy to install (took maybe 3 minutes)......Hated the idea of purchasing a home theater system and having wires running everywhere.....I am completely satisfied with this sound "box"..........I was kinda shocked at how large this speaker box is. It is large but my 50" fits nice on top of it and it DOES blend in with the black tv.........
Pros:
Sound is amazing compared to the standard tv speakers.
Cons:
Size....Make sure this fits where you want it to go
1 out of 1 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Great Sound

Written By MDR67, Pittsford, NY on Friday, March 30, 2012
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
After purchasing a 46" LED TV we were very unhappy with the sound quality of the internal speakers. The ZVOX Z-Base 555 solved our problems and looks great doing it. Very easy too install, classic styling blends in with our decor, and the sound produced is far superior to the internal TV speakers. The remote allows fine tuning to your specific preferences, the "surround" feature is not a "true" surround sound but it fills our 16' x 20' family quite well with thumping lows and crisp highs. Our children are always plugging their iPods into the Aux jack wheen doing things around the house. The ZVOX has become our main system for listening to music on the first floor of our home. The enhanced dialog is great when you really want to concentrate on conversations. We had a minor problem with our remote (4 months into ownership). An email to ZVOX customer service had a brand new remote shipped to me the very next day. I'm pleased with Crutchfield, I'm pleased our ZVOX unit, and I'm pleased with the customer service I've received.
Pros:
Looks great, sounds awesome.
Cons:
A more detailed control panel on the front of the unit itself would be my only suggestion
2 out of 2 people found this helpful
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4 out of 5

Z-Vox Z-Base 555 Loudsspeaker

Written By GeneH, Silver Spring, MD on Monday, February 27, 2012
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Product is made in China. Had I realized that before purchase, I probably would have avoided it. That said, the unit sounds very good, a tremendous improvement to the TV's internal speakers (Samsung 42" class flat screen (LCD)). Simple to set up and use. Had a little trouble getting my cable company's remote to work with it, but a phone call to Crutchfield's tech department solved that problem in short order.
Pros:
Sounds very good; simple to set up and use. I am quite pleased with it. It was up and running within 2 days of placing the order.
Cons:
None except country of origin --- but that's just me.
2 out of 10 people found this helpful
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4 out of 5

Nice Soundbar for the money

Written By Jack, Halifax, PA on Monday, February 13, 2012
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
I purchased this soundbar from Crutchfield (received the unit in just 1-day after ordering) based on extensive internet research and after thoroughly reviewing a popular internet audio-video forum. I bought it after checking its ratings versus a Polk 6000 soundbar. Although I had no actual experience with either soundbar beforehand, I decided to buy the Zvox, which was just a bit cheaper than the Polk, and because it received rave reviews by some of the popular electronics stores and testing sites. I had no trouble hooking it up to my TV and satellite system, but I could not get the remote to completely "sync" with my satellite remote. A minor issue, but worthy of mentioning, I think. My first flick was Super-8 and the sound was amazing. I enjoyed the unit for about 2 weeks, but I noticed that although the unit put-out some amazing sounds (I attached a spare Mirage sub-woofer I had laying around - the Zvox doesn't come with a sub), it didn't seem to be able to give me the eardrum-splitting volume I craved. So, I decided to return the Zvox and exchange it for a more powerful solution to my druthers, mostly because I wanted more volume, and because I just received my income tax return. One other thing - the Zvox is revolutionary in its ability to "disappear" from your set-up as it's a nifty stand for my Sony TV. My wife is nit-picky about her home decor, and even she didn't notice the Zvox underneath the TV until I told her it was there
Pros:
Serves as a great TV stand; it virtually disappears beneath your TV. Great sounds. Sufficient base and treble controls; vocals very clear and even without a separate sub-woofer, the lows are thumping and great fun to listen to.
Cons:
Remote control is a bit finicky with my DirecTV satellite remote control unit. The soundbar didn't seem to put-out a huge amount of room-rattling volume.
3 out of 12 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

ZVOX ZBASE555

Written By TLP, Kulpmont, Pa. on Saturday, February 11, 2012
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Excellent sound from a relatively small package. Setup was easy. Works well with my DIRECTV remote. Great surround sound from a small package.
Pros:
Size and SOUND. Price is not bad either. As always Crutchfield came through.
Cons:
NONE
1 out of 1 people found this helpful
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4 out of 5

Great speakers. Met my needs.

Written By TonyB, Horseheads, NY on Wednesday, February 08, 2012
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
I was looking for a soundbar for my Sharp 40 inch HD LCD tv. I considered other makes, but based on the positive feed back I went with the ZVOX Z-Base 555. I've been using the ZVOX for about a month now and I am not disappointed. Set up was simple and it looks great under my TV. I love the fact that it learned the commands of my Tivo remote. I only rated it 4 stars because of the lack of more than one digital optical input and no HDMI pass through. I originally was going to hook this up using the digital optical out on my tv, but I was disappointed to find out that most TV's on the market today will not pass through Dolby 5.1 through the optical out for HDMI sources. So, the only way to get Dolby 5.1 from both my Tivo HD and PS3 would be to hook each directly to the ZVOX. But, there is only one digital optical in. I ended up buying an optical to coaxial converter so that I could use the coaxial input on the soundbar to connect my PS3. All in all, I am very happy with the speaker and I am glad I went with ZVOX. As a bonus I was able to get the speaker as a scratch and dent. It still looked brand new when I opened it and I saved $$$. Awesome! This speaker may not be for everyone, but I love it.
Pros:
Easy setup All self contained (no speakers or wires all over the living room) Learned my Tivo Premier remote commands my wife and kids find it super easy to use
Cons:
Only 1 digital optical input No HDMI Passthrough
6 out of 6 people found this helpful
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4 out of 5

Good Product

Written By Jim, Crystal Lake, IL on Tuesday, February 07, 2012
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Recieved this product in a few days, thought I was going to set it up in minutes (per other reviews) however my Samsung ultra thin 3D TV had other ideas. I called Crutchfield for help and was told that I would have to go out and buy another cable to get this working. Day 2 purchased cable for $15, and within minutes had the speaker box hooked up and playing. Sound is ok, there is no surround sound effect that I hear, but I was not looking for that anyway. It does sound much better than the TV speakers and for the price that's good enough for me. I would reccomend this product as long as you have realistic expectations.
3 out of 3 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

ZVOX Z-Base 555

Written By CDS, Pinckney, MI on Tuesday, February 07, 2012
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Nice upgrade to the TV's audio. Especially like the load commercial leveler, it works!! Great bass response.
Cons:
Just a bit overpriced.
1 out of 1 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Great Product

Written By Boomer, Florida on Tuesday, February 07, 2012
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Great product. We can hear again--the speakers on our flat screen TV are in the rear and despite being a top line model, the spreakers are not good. With this the voice are clear--thanks ZVOX
Pros:
It works well
Cons:
Should have bought it years ago
1 out of 1 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

epic simpicity

Written By rico, redford michigan on Tuesday, February 07, 2012
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
wanted to enhance the sound from new flat screen in a large living room, without tangles of wires. after seeing one cable hookup, decided to try the zvox. TV and DVD's play deep sound at half volume, and music is superior from ipod. liked option for wired subwoofer on this model. Ended up matching my cabinet and raising my screen to a perfect level for the room. after one month of use this rates as best electronic purchase ever made. and i am an old guy!
Pros:
setup in minutes, number of inputs, beautiful wood box, fairly priced.
Cons:
none
2 out of 2 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

ZVOX Z-Base 555

Written By Mark, Wilmington, DE on Sunday, January 29, 2012
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
A solid product! Significantly clarifies the sound otherwise coming from my Sony flat screen without having to make the volume louder. Very simple hook-up and operation. Dialog Emphasis takes the muddiness out of the spoken word and Output Leveling keeps commercials from blaring (although I often mute them). One of the most straightforward, performs-as-advertised, solid products I've run across in recent memory. A big home theatre system has better sound, but also is more hassle to hook up and to operate. Exactly what I was looking for.
Pros:
Dramatically improves the sound -- clarity, output leveling, dialog; simple to hook up and operate; performs as advertised.
Cons:
None that I've noticed.
3 out of 3 people found this helpful
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4 out of 5

great sound!

Written By Mike, Hurricane, WV on Sunday, January 29, 2012
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Very good sound, and easy to setup. I'm pleased with the purchase.
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4 out of 5

No Fuss Soundbar

Written By Anonymous, Austin, Texas on Friday, January 27, 2012
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
A surprisingly difficult part in the installation was making sure the TV was centered on the Z-base 555. If your flat panel is big, it's best to have two people.

The supplied cable works fine, but it would have been nice also to have an optical cable since many flat panels have optical audio outputs. But, this is understandable... not every flat panel has an optical output.

Everything else was pretty straight forward. My Logitech Universal remote was a bit old so we had to use the learn function as no remote codes for the 555 were readily available.

The sound is pretty good. For sitcoms and regular TV, you won't need anything else. But make no mistake, this sound bar is not a replacement for a proper home theater system. The folks at ZVOX did provide a sub woofer output, though. Maybe this will supply a bit more punch.
Pros:
Wicked easy setup. Knuckle Draggers rejoice. Innocuous with respect to space requirements. My curious toddler leaves it alone.
Cons:
A bit pricey but well worth the convenience
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5 out of 5

ZVOX555

Written By TOMR, Scranton,Pa. on Friday, January 27, 2012
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Very nice unit, great sound and works really well in small livingroom. Very easy to install and it fills the room with great sound and clarity
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4 out of 5

Much better sound

Written By JW, Seattle, WA on Friday, January 27, 2012
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Our Panasonic plasma tv has a great picture, but hearing dialogue clearly was often difficult, and occasionally made a show unwatchable. The Z-Base 555 with dialogue enhancement makes a huge difference. The surround sound is also much better than one would think possible from a relatively narrow box that requires so little space.
Pros:
Greatly improved sound. Excellent dialogue enhancement.
Cons:
Power plug connection requires an additional inch plus of depth in addition to the depth of the actual unit. This seems a surprising lapse considering the overall excellent design. Thee is an attempt to put the directions on one sheet. This makes them overly cryptic for some users.
1 out of 2 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

ZVOX Sounds great

Written By vball01, franklin, nj on Thursday, January 26, 2012
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
I brought this as a gift for my girlfriend and after a few glitches in set up, okay we're not technically savvy, we got started and love the unit. The sound is great and the box uses little space and is fairly innocuous, blending well with the TV
Pros:
Great sound in a small space
Cons:
None really
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5 out of 5

ZVOX Z-Base 555

Written By Steve D., St. Peters, MO on Wednesday, January 25, 2012
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Excellent unit for the price. Gave as a gift and they love it. Good sound, dispersion and bass for the money. More impact for video games. Also compact, self-contained unit which works perfectly under the TV as a base. Great for smaller spaces where a full home theater system and wires may not work. I imagine the top of the line model has even greater output and bass. Stereophile gave a good review also. (I would have rated 4 1/2 stars because few pieces of audio equipment are perfect).
Pros:
Great sound instead of listening to weak flat-screen TV speakers, good dispersion and bass. Compact, self-contained single unit and stable base for TV. Good value for the money.
Cons:
None.
2 out of 2 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Decent sound without tons of wires

Written By HOPEA, Leesburg, FL on Monday, January 23, 2012
 
I live in a close complex so rattling sound not needed and I hated all the wire and unit placement of 5.1 units. The zbase 555 performs well and provides surround sound even at low volume levels for late night use. Hooked up a sony subwoofer 60 watt for football rattling sound,but not realy needed for every day use. The DE and OL features are great. Do not have my unit under tv - that way I can take it to other rooms as needed. This unit will fill a room with rich sound. Love it for looks, sound, ease of hookup/use and the fact there are no units to hookup or miles of wire to run.
Pros:
Does as designed to do in sound and ease of use. The sound will fill a room and any volume setALL the featurs work well and there is no need to get up and adjust sound or knobs as with some units.
Cons:
No on /off button on the front.
1 out of 1 people found this helpful
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4 out of 5

ZVOX_Z Base 555

Written By Bob L., Ocala on Sunday, January 22, 2012
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Love the product BUT wonder why they didn't provide for a headphone output connection or did they ????
Cons:
no headphone output connection....
1 out of 3 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Great sound!

Written By Jon B, Chicago, IL on Tuesday, January 17, 2012
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
I've had this unit for about two weeks now. Very happy with the sound quality. I will admit that my expectations were slightly higher after reading the reviews online, but when you consider that this system isn't a full 5.1 type setup, you can't expect 5.1 type sound performance. Speaker far out-performs anything a standard TV speaker can produce and the design is nice. I'm using as a TV stand and doesn't look out of place. Well worth the money.
Pros:
Easy to setup / install / operate. Good sound quality
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5 out of 5

Outstanding Sound Solution

Written By Rick, Le Sueur, MN on Sunday, December 04, 2011
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Recently was browsing through the latest Crutchfield magazine just sent to us in the mail, and was looking for speaker solutions for our new flatscreen that lacked good sound to say the least. I had no idea of the ZVOX concept of a speaker acting as a seamless and good looking stand for the TV, and loved that concept over a bar. After reading nothing but positive reviews, I decided to go forward and purchase. EXTREMELY pleased I did. It took probably 10 minutes to get set up and running. Instant sound improvent - impressive sound depth - terrific quality. I like to watch TV from my kitchen island which is 35 feet away from my set - now I have no problem hearing quality sound from my set. Terrific product!!
Pros:
Instant sound improvement as easy as it gets.
Cons:
Nothing.
3 out of 3 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Big sound improvement

Written By Lesh, New Jersey on Friday, September 23, 2011
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
The Z-Base 555 was a quick and easy way to improve the sound for our family room TV. In this space, we have no room for an A/V receiver, speakers and unsightly speaker wire. The Z-Base is a perfect fit and sounds great compared to the TV sound. I like this much better than the previous model that had no volume display or front panel iPod input. Very happy with the purchase.
7 out of 7 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Exceeded expectations

Written By JB, Alexandria, VA on Monday, September 19, 2011
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
I purchased the Z-Base 555 based entirely on reviews here and scattered throughout the web. I did not have an opportunity to listen to the device before purchasing but felt comfortable enough in my past experience with Crutchfield and ZVOX's 30-day guarantee to take the plunge.

I'll just quickly reiterate what others have said, that if you're looking for a complex home theater solution for a large space you should look elsewhere. But if you're on the hunt for amazing sound in a small footprint this system will put a smile on your face. Cinematic explosions boom like thunder, sure. But dialog is also crystal clear, and you can tweak the levels a bit to fit your ears.

The setup was a cinch, at least after figuring out how to disable my TV's internal speakers! And having my TV sit on top of the unit, instead of having a sound bar floating aimlessly in front, just looks brilliant. Suffice it to say, I am blown away by what ZVOX has been able to do with this system.
9 out of 9 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

ZVOX Z-Base 555

Written By Kathy, Milton, FL on Saturday, September 10, 2011
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Excellent sound. I use this rather than the television speakers for all listening.
2 out of 4 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Excellent Sound Bar

Written By Ron, Pagosa Springs, CO on Wednesday, August 24, 2011
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Before I recently purchased the ZVOX Z-Base 555, I owned a Polk Audio sound bar system with an additional component required for operation (DVD player). There is no doubt that I now know what I was missing while operating this system with my flat screen TV. The ZVOX Z-Base 555 is more than a sound bar. It has incredible range and many more features than the Polk Audio system. I would highly recommend the ZVOX Z-Base 555 for anyone needing a quality sound system but has limited space. You can't go wrong with this item.
7 out of 7 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Not true surround, but met expectations

Written By Timm, Russellville, Arkansas on Thursday, July 28, 2011
 
If you have a good home theater system with 9 speakers in the house, you will initially not be overly impressed by this unit. This unit was place in the family room under a Sony XBR-2. I tried the Toslink connection but it did not work. I didn't trouble shoot it, so it could have been a bad cable or bad port on a 5 year old TV. The analog connection worked fine. Set up was fairly simple; but I found one trick to pass along: Set up the TV volume at 90 on a scale of 100, and turn off the TV speaker to get sufficient TV "output" so you'll get maximum performance from the Zvox. If you don't do that, your volume output won't be that good watching a game with a lot of people.

Having done that, I can say that the unit performed as advertised. The DE button is a great feature, the sub is adequate, and the front panel input for ipods is a nice feature, and the OL feature is also good. Aesthetically, it blends very well.

All in all, it really does what it advertises, but not more, so have the right expectations when you buy this unit. What it does really well is create an improved soundstage for a bedroom or a room where the wife won't allow all the speakers needed for true surround. If you are looking for a bigger stage with improvement in effects and excellent clarity, then this is a unit for you.
16 out of 16 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Best Soundbar System on the Market. Period.

Written By Matt K., Greensboro, NC on Saturday, July 23, 2011
 
Between store visits and in-home trials I ran through the laundry list of systems including the Sony CT150, Kardon SB 16, LG 316, Bose Cinemate, and basically every system any electronics store in the area had to offer.

Some were impressive but none really filled the room with the immersing sound I was looking for. I didn't expect magic but I'll admit my years of 7.1 channel custom enjoyment probably set the bar high.

Then I read about the newly released 555 from ZVox and dug through their history. With a 30 day trial I figured I couldn't lose.

Boy did I not lose.

This system disappears beneath my 50" plasma. That is, until you turn it on. For movies this compact system provides remarkable base far exceeding any other system without an external subwoofer. At the same time, it spreads the sound well and has remarkable clarity throughout its range. Vocals, music, and every mid-range effect is crystal clear and the system performs equally admirably when watching standard tv at low volumes.

Can't say enough for ZVox and this system. My search is over and I may not go back to a 7.1 channel system. True, it doesn't give you the real from-behind sound motion but for clarity and room-filling volume it easily matches anything on the market.
22 out of 23 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Depends On What You Want

Written By John F, Brick, NJ on Thursday, July 21, 2011
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
If you want your flat-screen TV's sound to face you rather than surround you or be deflected from behind or beneath the screen, then this soundbar will surprise you. Easier to install than expected. TV remote control "learns" to sync up quickly. We use the digital audio in/out. If this is all you have, adding a powered subwoofer would be overkill. You WILL need to anchor the TV if you plan to stand it on top of the soundbar.
14 out of 14 people found this helpful
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1 question already asked

What kind of sub woofer can be added to this unit? [ Wendell  Nov 27, 2013 ]
1 answer
  • This unit has a standard RCA output for the subwoofer, so any of the powered home subwoofers will connect with no issue. Feel free to reach out to an Advisor by phone or chat to discuss which subwoofer will be a good match for your system and the room it will be going in. [ Jeff Staff  Nov 27, 2013 ]

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