Dolby's Atmos surround-sound technology can create an encompassing experience, and a soundbar is the easiest way to add the experience to your home theater. Until recently, Atmos soundbars cost $1,000 or more, but the company is now making lower-priced units. Anker's $230 Soundcore Infini Pro is the least expensive soundbar with Atmos we've seen yet. The Infini Pro a solid overall soundbar, but you shouldn't buy it if you want a real Atmos experience.
The Infini Pro fits the standard soundbar aesthetic: a rectangle covered in black mesh. The 36.6 x 4.7 x 2.4-inch unit fits well with 45- to 55-inch TVs, though it might get dwarfed by larger ones. Inside, the soundbar features two midrange drivers and two tweeters along with two woofers.
You can connect one HDMI device to the Infini Pro, and there are options for connecting via digital optical, 3.5 mm and Bluetooth. The soundbar has one HDMI output, which supports ARC.
On top of the unit, you'll find the controls for the basic functions: power, volume and input selection. That's also where the indicators for the current input, sound mode and volume level are, which makes the status difficult to see when you're sitting on the couch.
The remote offers control of those functions as well, from volume to sound mode. You can also adjust the bass level from the remote. The free app for iOS and Android offers the same controls as the remote.
For a midpriced soundbar, the Infini Pro delivers good overall audio quality, especially in surround-sound mode while you're watching shows and movies. The dialogue is clear and full, and it produces enough bass to provide depth and resonance. It falls short when it comes to producing the full effects of Dolby Atmos, however.
The speaker's wide sound helped fill the room with dragon roars and shrieking soldiers while I watched Game of Thrones, and it made Jon Snow's speeches clear and easy to understand.
When I was watching a Dolby Atmos demo video of a swirling leaf, the Infini Pro handled the width of the sound well, but I couldn't detect much height — on other Atmos soundbars it felt like the leaf was moving around me; that didn't happen with the Infini Pro. Although some of the spatial effects of Atmos were lacking, I still enjoyed the deeper bass and fuller overall sound that the Infini Pro produced.
The speaker's shortcomings also became evident when listening to music. The Infini Pro is serviceable at best for cranking tunes. Sharon Van Etten's voice was buried in the mix on her song "Seventeen," while Tame Impala's "Patience" sounded thin overall.
The Infini Pro gets plenty loud, and can easily fill a large room with sound with 60 watts for the woofers and 60 watts for the tweeters and midrange drivers.
The Infini Pro is easy to set up, as a soundbar should be. If you want to take advantage of the Infini Pro's Atmos abilities, you need to connect via HDMI to your TV and have an Atmos-capable source plugged into the soundbar.
You can choose among a few sound modes — movie, music, voice or surround. In most cases, surround was the best option. Beyond that, you can adjust the bass level, but that's it.
The Infini Pro creates a wide sound and produces good bass without a separate subwoofer. Dialogue comes through full and clear. But don't get it for its Atmos abilities; it lacks the full spatial effects that make movies and TV shows encoded in Atmos fun to experience. For the Atmos experience on a budget, try the $500 Vizio SB36512-F6.
If you're simply looking for a great-sounding budget soundbar, the Infini Pro is worth considering, although the $200 Yamaha YAS-108 is slightly less expensive and handles music better.