Sony HT CT180 Review — Enjoy Virtual Surround Sound With Its 2.1 Channels and Wireless Subwoofer

The Sony HT CT180 is a slim soundbar-subwoofer combo, making it a 2.1 channel soundbar. A soundbar with a subwoofer should bring the bass and round out the audio spectrum quite nicely, but does the HT CT180 do the job? To make sure your hard earned money isn’t going to waste, our experts conducted a thorough Sony HT CT180 review.

Brand new Sony HTC180 units are difficult to find in the market nowadays. If you’re looking for the best soundbar alternatives today, here are our handpicked recommendations, all under 300 bucks!

What We Like

What We Don't Like

Sony HT CT180 Design

The Sony HT CT180 soundbar and subwoofer combination has a design that can easily match any interior. With no obvious buttons, logos and other defining features, this 2.1 channel soundbar can blend in seamlessly and support high fidelity audio.

Measuring at 90 cm, or 35 inches, the Sony HT CT180 is a great option for mid-sized TVs where speakers just don’t do the trick. The sleek black soundbar features a basic control panel on the side of the soundbar and the surface of the soundbar are indicator lights that flash your settings.

The subwoofer also shares the minimalist design of the soundbar without any distinct features but a large driver. It has a wireless design, which allows for flexible placement around the room to find that perfect listening sweet spot.

Features of the Sony HT CT180

Sound Quality

While the HT CT180 doesn’t feature industry standard advanced audio technologies for elevated sound, it does have Sony’s proprietary technology such as Sony S-Force, S-Master Digital Amplifier, and ClearAudio+. 

Sony S-Force is a surround sound technology that can encircle you with 3D audio without having to add additional components to your setup. 

Sony’s S-Master Digital Amplifier ensures less distortion at any volume level from your soundbar and more power for more far-reaching sound, as our experts have also proven in this Sony HT CT180 review.

Lastly, ClearAudio+ is used not only to enhance your music, but clarify speech and all the previously inaudible sound effects. ClearAudio+ will automatically detect your settings and optimize them to produce ideal content.

If you are looking for its speaker counterpart, you can also check the best 2.1 wireless speakers in this list. 


The Sony HT CT180 is a 2.1 channel soundbar subwoofer combo just like the Klipsch Cinema 600 or Klipsch Bar 48. The digit before the decimal refers to how many sound output channels there are on the soundbar and the digit after the decimal is the number of subs you have.

In this case, the Sony soundbar has a left and right channel plus an external wireless subwoofer, making up the 2.1 channels. To get true surround sound, a system needs to have at least 5 channels and 1 subwoofer. The more channels the better for true cinematic experience, but 5 is the most basic. 

That’s not to say a soundbar with 2 or 3 channels cannot simulate surround sound, but it can only do so with the help of added components or advanced audio technologies, which is what we call virtual surround sound. 

Adding top-performing floor standing speakers under 2000 can also significantly improve your 2 or 3 channel sound  system, as well. 

Sony HT CT180 Subwoofer

The Sony HT CT180 soundbar comes with one subwoofer that is responsible for all the bass tones. It has a wireless design which helps with the placement. Our team was pleasantly surprised at the high performance of the sub. It is comparable to the best Kicker subwoofer even when set up in a car audio system.

Virtual Surround Sound

As mentioned above, the 2.1 channel soundbar is only capable of virtual surround sound with the help of Sony S-Force and the S-Master Digital Amplifier. Our experts were disappointed with the lack of DTS or Dolby technology, but they found that Sony’s brand-specific technologies more than do the trick.

Sound Modes

Other than the ClearAudio+ and virtual surround sound mode, the Sony HT CT180 also offers night mode and voice mode. Night mode can be activated to audio levels at a minimum for low noise environments. Voice mode is a dedicated sound mode just to enhance speech.

Wireless Connectivity

The Sony HT CT180 has basic wireless connectivity [1] with Bluetooth that allows you to stream content from your mobile devices. You can set it up easily with NFC One-Touch Technology.

Sony HT CT180 Connections

Our experts always suggest opting for HDMI connection if your devices support it. Unlike TCL Alto 6+ with HDMI ARCthe HT CT180 does not have one, so digital optical cable is the next one on our team’s list of suggestions. This form of connection can also support digital content and HD.


The Sony HT CT180 like Vizio M21D-H8R is quite an affordable soundbar considering all the brand-specific technology it comes with and an external subwoofer to enliven your listening experience. For all you get, our experts feel it’s worth the purchase.


How do I connect my Sony HT ct180 sound bar?

You can connect your Sony HT CT180 sound bar either with digital optical or analog connections found on the back of the soundbar.

How do I reset my Sony HT ct180?

You can reset your Sony HT CT180 by pressing the power, input and volume down buttons together for 5 seconds until the LED lights blink.

Sony HT CT180 Review Conclusion

Our experts’ Sony HT CT180 review is a highly positive one. Sony’s technology embedded in the device really elevated the listening experience and the wireless sub really brought out all the bass tones.


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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.