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Nakamichi Shockwafe Ultra 9.2 Soundbar Review

If you are looking for a soundbar that can drastically change your audio experience, this 9.2 channel sound system is incredible. But is it right for you?

As an underrated product, the Nakamichi Shockwafe Ultra 9.2 is a premium choice and we’ll tell you why in this in-depth review.

Pros

  • Very well built
  • 9.2.4 channels setup
  • Can pump out loud volumes
  • Provides Dolby Atmos surround sound
  • 1000 watts of power
  • Comprehensive sound system
  • Dual wireless subwoofers
  • 360-degree expansive sound
  • 4 modular speakers
  • Flexible placement
  • Comes with everything in the box
  • Multiple forms of connection
  • Remote and bar controls plus app
  • Power saving mode
  • Supports Bluetooth

Cons

  • The sound will be a bit compressed at max volume

Design

The Nakamichi Shockwafe Ultra 9.2 is a heavy-duty home theater system that has all the right accessories and a beautiful design. Equipped with 2 external subwoofers and 4 rear satellite speakers, our audio team is very impressed with the looks and performance of the entire system. 

They are all matte black with black grilles and embellished with silver trim for a futuristic design. Even with so many components, the Nakamichi Shockwafe Ultra 9.2 design is compact and takes up as little space as possible.

Placement

Due to the Nakamichi Shockwafe Ultra 9.2 having so many moving parts and being a relatively large soundbar system, placement can be limited if you don’t have that much space in your home. If you are placing it level with your TV on a surface, the soundbar could be tall enough to obstruct the bottom part.

We would suggest placing it lower than your TV or wall-mounting it for the best aesthetics and sound. During our tests, we’d say the wall is the optimum location for connecting your Nakamichi soundbar to your TV.

Interface and Display

The control panel on the soundbar has 5 buttons: two for the volume, one for inputs, a demo button, and a power button. The power button helps you test the tones for each individual channel in the system.

The soundbar also has a mini display that sits inconspicuously behind the grill. It will show your settings and menus,which is helpful when you’re operating the sound bar up close.

Features

While it’s more known as a car audio brand [1], Nakamichi is more than capable of producing an all-encompassing audio experience for your home. Here are some of its more notable features: 

Channels

The Nakamichi Shockwafe Ultra 9.2 is an amazing soundbar with 9.2.4 channels. The first number is the number of channels it has (where sound is emitted from), the second is the number of subwoofers, and the last is the number of external speakers (in this case, the rear satellite speakers).

We always say that 5 channels is the number you should get if you want industry-standard surround sound, so you can imagine the type of immersive and expansive sound the Nakamichi Shockwafe Ultra 9.2 can provide. The numbers alone lets you know how powerful this system is compared to other well-reviewed soundbars like the Sony HT-CT80 that come with fewer channels.

Meanwhile, the Vizio SB3651-E6 simulates 5.1 surround sound, which brings it closer to the standard.

Sound Quality

The frequency response of the soundbar isn’t astounding but it’s still pretty good. With a range from 48.3 Hz up to 5.7 kHz, the subwoofer does help even everything out. 

It’s quite a capable soundbar for those who like loud sounds as the Nakamichi Shockwafe Ultra 9.2 is one of the loudest soundbars on the market. They also put emphasis on the sound direction for smaller details instead of having it overwhelm you from all directions. 

When listened to at a regular volume, the sound is pure and clear with minimal harmonic distortion. Our tests reflected more distortion if you turned the volume all the way up, but it’s still insignificant compared to the detail you’ll hear. 

Surround Sound

With so many extra components as a 9.2.4 soundbar, it’s not very difficult for the Nakamichi Shockwafe Ultra to achieve surround sound. To be able to play DTS and Atmos content, however, you need to be sure to turn the Dolby Surround function on.

This soundbar also has a sound enhancement feature, which comes up on the remote as “room”. This feature will change the sound and adjust accordingly depending on the size of your room.

Subwoofer

With two subwoofers, the bass in this system is tremendously rumbling and room-filling. The “bass” button on the remote can help tune the lower frequencies with tons of sound customization options available. We do recommend turning the bass down a bit since it can be overwhelming. 

The subs can be placed on either side of the soundbar to propel deep and rich bass right across the room. The subwoofer in the Shockwafe Ultra is already larger than regular subwoofers included with soundbar systems, so having two would need even more space.

Satellite Speakers

The 4 rear satellite speakers can be strategically placed around the room to further produce immersive sound. The satellite speakers have rear mounting holes in case you want to place them on the wall and connections to the subwoofers.

With the satellite speakers in place, the full 9.2.4 home theater system is complete.

Connection

When it comes to connection options, the Nakamichi Shockwafe Ultra offers HDMI arc, HDMI input and output, an analog 3.5 mm, and USB. With three HDMI ports, it’s easy to run all the sound through the soundbar posing as the command center.

The soundbar also supports Bluetooth wireless playback, but unfortunately doesn’t offer Wi-Fi connections. While you need to connect the subwoofers to some sort of power outlet, it doesn’t need to be wired to the soundbar itself, but the 4 satellite speakers do need to be connected to the subs to work.

Remote and Controls

The Nakamichi Shockwafe Ultra comes with a remote that gives you full control over the entire soundbar system. Unfortunately, it’s not a universal remote, which means you will have at least two remotes in the house.

Compared to the remotes of other soundbars we’ve tested, the remote in this model is quite large and can be difficult to hold for someone with smaller hands. Also, the Nakamichi Shockwafe Ultra doesn’t have an app, which is pretty disappointing considering how big the system is.

Still, you have two options for controls – the remote and the control panel on the soundbar.

Power Saving

For users who are conscious about their energy consumption, this soundbar also comes with a power-saving mode or “eco mode”. It’s basically just the soundbar going into standby if it’s been inactive for over 20 minutes.

Setup and Accessories

Setup is easy and your purchase comes with everything you need right in the box. This includes all the cables you need, the remote, batteries, user manuals, and of course, the mounting kit.

Nakamichi Shockwafe Ultra 9.2 Review Conclusion

The Nakamichi Shockwafe Ultra 9.2 provides an unsurpassed experience in terms of heavy-duty and explosive sound. With 9 channels, 2 subwoofers, and 4 satellite rear speakers, the sound quality and the detail that emanates from this soundbar system is superior than others in the same price point.

Willie Greer

Willie Greer is the founder of The Product Analyst. A cinephile, he has made it a personal quest to achieve the awesomest home theater possible. He now shares what he has learned through the years on the site, and has enlisted the help of tech-savvy colleagues in providing more insight about today’s most sought-after gadgets.
Willie Greer

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Nakamichi Shockwafe Ultra 9.2 Soundbar Review
8.5 Total Score

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