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Polk Audio SurroundBar® 500 Component Home Theater™

7-channel home theater sound bar

4 Reviews | 1 question - 1 answer

Item # 107CHT500

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Our take on the Polk Audio SurroundBar® 500 Component Home Theater™

Your component home theater speaker system is less than two inches away
A room full of speakers is no longer the price you have to pay for a great home theater system. At a mere 1-1/2" deep, Polk Audio's SurroundBar 500 CHT delivers crisp, room-filling sound in a fraction of the space required by traditional seven or five-speaker systems.

Your component home theater speaker system is less than two inches away
A room full of speakers is no longer the price you have to pay for a great home theater system. At a mere 1-1/2" deep, Polk Audio's SurroundBar 500 CHT delivers crisp, room-filling sound in a fraction of the space required by traditional seven or five-speaker systems.

Excellence by design
Polk Audio invented a completely new driver to enable the 500 CHT's ultra-slim profile: a 3-1/4" low-distortion, ASP™(Asymmetrically Sculpted Sculpted Profile™) aluminum dome mid-woofer with neodymium magnets and voice coils that are loaded for bear. Nine ASP woofers team with three of Polk's ring radiator tweeters to deliver a big soundstage that will envelop you with goodness, whether you're firing up your favorite Blu-ray movie or relaxing to some sweet tunes. And the 500 CHT uses patented Polk SDA® and Digital Logic™ technologies to deliver wraparound audio without the need for rear speakers.

Flexibility at the flip of a switch
The 500 CHT features a handy mode switch that lets you customize the speaker to suit your room, your home theater receiver, and your preferences. Set it to either 5- or 7-channel mode to match the capability of your receiver, and it will reproduce all the surround sound channels in your movie soundtracks. Or engage the "LCR" (left, center, right) mode and use the SurroundBar for only your front three speakers, if you want to add separate surround speakers for even more authentic home theater sound.

Installation doesn't get much easier than this
You can wall-mount the 500 CHT right below your TV. Or use the supplied adjustable feet to place this video-shielded speaker on your equipment stand. Connect the separate SDA crossover module to your home theater receiver with your own speaker wire (not included)) then use the supplied 15-foot, color coded speaker cable to connect to the sound bar. No more confusion about which wire goes where.

Don't forget the bass...
For full home theater impact, pair the 500 CHT with a Polk powered subwoofer.

Product Highlights:

  • single-speaker home theater sound bar
  • separate crossover module enables ultra-thin sound bar design
  • frequency response 100-29,000 Hz (-3dB)
  • handles 20-150 watts per channel
  • sensitivity 87 dB
  • 8-ohm impedance
  • SDA surround technology and Digital Logic deliver 360º wraparound sound from just one speaker
  • three 3/4" ring radiator tweeters
  • nine 3-1/4" ASP (Asymmetrically Sculpted Profile) drivers for ultra-low distortion
  • seven sets of spring-post speaker terminals
  • extruded aluminum cabinet virtually eliminates sound-muddying resonance
  • anti-diffraction grille for open, spacious imaging
  • bracket included for easy wall-mounting
  • adjustable feet included
  • 15-foot, 14 conductor, color-coded speaker wire included (in-wall rated)
  • sound bar: 49"W x 4-1/4"H x 1-/2"D
  • crossover module: 1-7/8"H x 17"W x 8"D
  • warranty: 5 years
  • Our 60-day money-back guarantee

What's in the Box:

  • SurroundBar speaker
  • SDA control module
  • 15' Color-coded wiring harness
  • Wall-mount bracket
  • 2 Rubber feet
  • 2 Rack mount brackets
  • 4 Screws
  • Owner's Manual
  • Warranty Card
  • Online Product Registration
  • Speaker cable note (on plastic bag)
  • Polk Audio brochure
  • SDA Control Module Wall Mount Template

Polk Audio SurroundBar® 500 Component Home Theater™ Reviews

Average Customer Review(s):

(4 Reviews)

Pleasantly surprised

DefconDan from NYC on 1/27/2013

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

This a pretty impressive little sound bar, excuse me, surround bar. The speakers are very clear and the left center right separation is excellent. The center channel clarity is excellent, which was nice. Now, depending on the mix of the movie, the virtual surround capabilities are not going to knock your socks off; again depending on the film and its mix it can be weak to soft to very good. I have it set up as 7.1 and that probably the best option to do here if you can. Look if you can manage the full separated satellite speaker systems obviously its going to be better. But if your looking for a really good setup that is going to minimize your speakers to 1 this is really the one you want. I get most of what I want as an audio freak, more importantly CLARITY, and my wife gets less speakers/wiring/mess. Honestly if you understand what they are shooting for her you will be surprised. Sub is HIGHLY RECOMMENDED and depending on your home/ears/receiver the crossover will need adjustment but there are sweet spots so its just tweaking, just like you would with any speaker setup.

Pros: * Excellent audio quality * Single speaker giving multichannel sound * Low profile unlike a Yahama bar which is actually quite tall but probably just as good if not better * Happy Spouse if it cleans up some speaker mess

Cons: * Not true true surround; you will hear a difference from your separated system, but its still there * 7.1 wiring can be a lot of wires and while you can use banana plugs I found the ports to be too shallow to keep it secure but I have mine loose and havent had any issues. * Main cable from speaker to cable unit is a monster... you will need an extra wide in wall channel if you are going to wall mount. * wiring box is small dvr size; not terrible but plan space. * Sub needed for optimal sou

Looks Great

MG from Chesterfield, MO on 7/11/2012

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

This soundbar looks great with a wall mounted screen. Installation was easy. The surround effects are minimal, though I did not expect a lot compared to a traditional system with multiple speakers. Our priority was a clean look, followed by nice sound. For our family, the sound quality is excellent for both movies and music. I upgraded the sub to the Pro DSW 440wi. Receiver is Denon AVR 2312CI.

Pros: Design, sound quality, looks. Easy cable routing for installation.

Cons: Lacks true surround effect.

Great Choice

JLM from Fargo, ND on 2/3/2012

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

This sound bar is an excellent choice over the lower end options on the market. For movies the sound has good depth and clarity - not the same surround effect you will get with a traditional surround set up but that goes with all sound bars. Distortion at high volume will not be an issue as this can handle the watts with ease. Does a fine job for music as well. If you are wanting a sound bar over a traditional set up I highly recommend this unit, and the free sub performs very well in a medium sized room (mine is 12'x15'). A couple of notes: 1.) This unit does NOT come with speaker cables to the receiver, only one from the bar to the crossover. 2.) If you are buying a receiver at same time, get a 7.1 - I have a 5.1 Yamaha and it sounds great but the surround effect will improve with a 7.1 amp. If you are looking for a clean look and are willing to sacrifice some surround effect get this unit - it's a top quality sound bar. Also the LCR / 5.1 / 7.1 option of this unit allows for future expansion and that is a great feature not found on other units.

Pros: Design; sound quality; style

Cons: Lacks true surround effect a bit; crossover cable is huge

Great sound

Kevin from South Jordan, UT on 1/19/2012

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

The sound quality is great! I needed a speaker that looked good, was thin, but didn't want to sacrifice quality. The clarity is much better than I expected from such a thin design. While the range isn't bad, I recommend pairing with a subwoofer to get the lows for music, movies, and games. Overall, I am very satisfied and highly recommend the 500 CHT if you're looking for a sound bar.

Pros: Clarity, design, and a great option if looking for a single speaker solution.

Cons: None


Hands-on research

Features and Specs

Enclosure Acoustic Suspension
Design Bar
Pieces in System 2
Color Gloss black
Tweeter 0.75" Ring Radiator (x3)
Midrange None
Woofer 3.25" Dome (x9)
Separate Subwoofer No
Subwoofer Driver None
Surround Sound Decoding No
Dialogue Enhancement No
Auto Volume No
4K Video Compatible No
HDR Video Compatible ---
Audio Return Channel No
Remote IR Passthrough No
Works with TV Remote (IR) No
Control by App N
Bluetooth Connectivity No
Wi-Fi No
Wall-mountable Yes
Mounting Bracket Included Yes
Surface Mount Stand Included Yes
Speaker Parts Warranty 5 Years
Speaker Labor Warranty 5 Years
Amplifier Parts Warranty N/A
Amplifier Labor Warranty N/A
System Frequency Response 100-29k Hz
Powered System No
Sound Bar RMS Power 0
Subwoofer RMS Power N/A
Inputs and Outputs
Mini Stereo Audio Inputs None
RCA Stereo Audio Inputs None
Optical Digital Audio Inputs None
Coaxial Digital Audio Inputs None
HDMI Inputs None
HDMI Outputs None
USB Port No
Subwoofer Output 0
Sound Bar (inches) 4-1/4H x 49W x 1-5/8D
Sound Bar Weight 10 lbs
Subwoofer (inches) No Subwoofer
Subwoofer Weight N/A

Product Research

SurroundBar Series
Driver Technology
Enclosure Design
Mounting Options

SurroundBar Series

Polk Audio SurroundBar: The Polk Audio SurroundBar 500 CHT achieves single-speaker surround sound from one slim speaker bar & external crossover module. The Polk Audio SurroundBar 500 CHT is less than 1.625" deep, which is made possible by housing its crossover & SDA Surround technology in an external module. Polk Audio's exclusive patented SDA Surround & Polk Digital Logic technologies eliminate the need for rear speakers. The bar's black extruded aluminum enclosure is 49" long & blends in well with today's 50" or larger flat-panel televisions. The SurroundBar 500 CHT can be table-top or wall mounted.

SDA Control Module: The Polk Audio SurroundBar 500 CHT includes an external SDA Control Module. The external SDA Control Module includes all the crossover components and Polk's proprietary SDA Surround & Digital Logic technologies. It also includes the receiver inputs, channel mode switch, & output to the SurroundBar. This creates a sleek, compact two-component system that delivers a musical or movie experience not possible before from most soundbar speaker designs.

7Ch, 5Ch, or LCR Switch: The Polk Audio SurroundBar 500 CHT's control module features a rear-panel channel mode switch, which enables the SurroundBar to play as part of a 7ch, 5ch, or LCR front stage. You get a rich, enveloping surround experience when you using the SurroundBar 500 CHT in 7ch or 5ch mode, plus the flexibility of adding dedicated surround channel speakers when you use it as a LCR front stage.

  • 7Ch Mode: In 7ch mode, the Polk Audio SurroundBar 500 CHT creates all 7 channels of surround (Front/Center/Surround/Surround Back), without the use of any additional rear speakers.
  • 5Ch Mode: In 5ch mode, the SurroundBar 500 CHT creates 5 channels of surround (Front/Center/Surround), requiring additional speakers for the surround back channels.
  • LCR Mode:  In LCR mode, the SurroundBar 500 CHT creates 3 channels of surround (Front Left/Front Right/Center), requiring additional speakers for the surround & surround back channels.

Driver Technology

Polk Audio Proprietary Technologies: The SurroundBar 500 CHT utilizes Polk Audio's proprietary SDA Surround & Polk Digital Logic processing technologies to produce a rich, enveloping listening experience.

  • SDA Surround Technology: Polk's patented SDA Surround technology means there's no need to install rear speakers. SDA Surround creates a completely immersive experience, as if there were 5 or 7 speakers all around you. This technology is based on fundamental research into the way our ears process sound and perceive the direction of sounds. It uses a patented combination of signal processing and acoustical geometry that complements the spacing between your ears to produce surround sound without the need for rear mounted speakers. Since the SurroundBar 500 CHT works directly with the hearing mechanism and requires no special room characteristics, it can deliver a room-filling surround experience in nearly any location in almost any type of room.
  • Polk Digital Logic: The SurroundBar 500 CHT utilizes Polk Digital Logic to deliver big, crisp sonic performance with no complicated setup or calibration. Through Polk Digital Logic, the SurroundBar 500 CHT's sound is created independent of any room boundaries. Polk Digital Logic helps to maintain a solid center channel for clear, intelligible dialogue, & Polk's signature warm & full sound.

Polk Next-Generation Ring Radiator Tweeters: The SurroundBar 500 CHT uses three Polk next-generation 0.75" ring radiator tweeters with neodymium magnets for incredible accuracy & detail. The ring radiator tweeter is recognized as among the highest performing tweeter technologies available.

ASP Aluminum Dome Mid-Woofers: The SurroundBar 500 CHT features nine 3.25" ultra-shallow (0.9" deep) ASP (Asymmetrically Sculpted Profile) aluminum dome mid-woofers that use rubber surrounds & lightweight, powerful neodymium magnets for low distortion & smooth frequency response. Two of the nine drivers are dual voice coil (DVC) designs that make possible reproduction of seven discrete channels of information from fewer drive units than would otherwise be necessary. Fewer drivers enable Polk to reduce the bar's internal volume & therefore minimize the bar's depth, while reproducing seven vivid full-range channels associated with state of the art home-theater processors. The 3.25" (diameter) ASP drivers incorporate innovations specifically developed by Polk Audio.

  • First, the driver's 1.5" voice coil ensures high power handling and, in tandem with its coupler, helps provide an extra-rigid platform across almost the entire surface of the dome. This eliminates distortions on the dome & creates a more linear movement.

  • Second, the asymmetric pattern of indentations & bumps on the surface of each driver's dome eliminate resonances on the dome to smooth frequency response.

Frequency Response Note: The overall frequency response is 80 Hz to 33,000 Hz & the -3dB frequency response is 100 Hz to 29,000 Hz.

Enclosure Design

Aluminum Enclosure: The SurroundBar 500 CHT features a stylishly curved extruded aluminum enclosure in a high-gloss black to match today's flat-panel televisions. The shape of the heavy-duty non-resonant aluminum enclosure breaks up internal standing wave resonance to give you pure, lifelike sound.

Slim Profile: By separating the SDA Control Module from the SurroundBar speaker, the speaker cabinet measures only 1.625" deep.

Anti-Diffraction Grille & Bezel: The SurroundBar 500 CHT's anti-diffraction grille & bezel help create open, spacious imaging.


SurroundBar Speaker Terminal: The SurroundBar 500 CHT is fitted with a 14-pin proprietary connector to attach the included 15' speaker wire harness. The 15' speaker wire harness then connects to the external control module.

SDA Control Module Connections: The SDA Control Module is fitted with a 14-pin proprietary connector (speaker output) & 14 spring-post terminals (speaker input). The 14-pin proprietary connector connects the SurroundBar speaker & the Control Module together using the included wiring harness. The 14 spring-post terminals (FL+/-, FR+/-, C+/-, SL+/-, SR+/-, SBL+/-, SBR+/-) connect to your home theater receiver's speaker output terminals using 16-12AWG speaker wire (sold separately).

Color Coded Wiring: The included 15' 14-conductor speaker wire harness connects between the SurroundBar's & SDA Control Module's 14-pin proprietary connectors. The speaker wire harness is terminated with a proprietary 14-pin connector on both ends. The 14-conductor speaker wire harness is color-coded for easy identification.

Color Codes

White, White/black Front Left +, Front Left -
Red, Red/black Front Right +, Front Right -
Green, Green/black Center +, Center -
Blue, Blue/black Surround Left +, Surround Left -
Gray, Gray/black Surround Right +, Surround Right -
Brown, Brown/black Back Left +, Back Left -
Orange, Orange/black Back Right +, Back Right -

Mounting Options

SurroundBar Placement: The Polk Audio SurroundBar 500 CHT can be placed in front of, below, or above your flat-panel television.

Rubber Feet: The Polk Audio SurroundBar 500 CHT speaker can be placed on a stand or shelf using the included rubber feet. The rubber feet simply slide into the bottom grooves of the SurroundBar speaker. The feet can be positioned to place the speaker flat or at a 10° upward angle. Without the feet, the SurroundBar speaker tilts up 5°.

Note: The rubber feet add 0.125" to the height of the speaker.

Wall Mounting: The SurroundBar 500 CHT's can be hung on the wall using the supplied wall-mount bracket. The included wall-wall mount bracket clips on the back of the SurroundBar speaker without any additional hardware. The mounting bracket should be attached to the wall using a minimum of five drywall or wood screws (sold separately). Make sure the bracket is stud mounted.

Note: The mounting bracket measure 22.75" wide. The bracket adds 0.125" to the depth of the speaker.

Control Module Mounting: The SDA Control Module can be simply placed horizontally on a flat surface or installed in a rack using the supplied rack mount ears. It can also be mounted on a wall, either vertically or horizontally, using the module's integrated keyhole slots. A wall-mount template is provided. Wall-mount screws not provided.



  • W = 49.0"
  • H = 4.25" (4.375" with feet)
  • D = 1.625" (2" with feet)
  • Weight = 10 lbs

Control Module:

  • W = 16.9375"
  • H = 1.875"
  • D = 7.9375"
  • Weight = 7 lbs

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 verify what’s in the box, 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.

Q & A

Customer Q&A

1 question already asked

Absolutely. The model has been discontinued but we do have one left in our Scratch & Dent inventory. These items are first come, first served so, if this is the model you want, I recommend adding it to your cart and checking out before anyone else snatches it. I hope that helps! [ Ryan  Mar 25, 2016 ]  Staff