By John Patrick Pullen
Updated: May 19, 2017 6:20 PM ET | Originally published: May 18, 2017

We’re living in a golden age of televisions, where even entry-level sets look absolutely fantastic by any reasonable measure. But there’s a downside: Most TVs have pretty cruddy sound.

From the increasing number of whispery, dialog-heavy dramas to the failure of TV makers to put decent speakers in their screens, it seems there’s an ongoing conspiracy against your ears. Thankfully, there’s an easy fix: Get a sound bar.

These modern wonders will make your TV shows and movies sound better than ever, often even without wiring up a complicated multi-speaker home theater setup.

Where should you start? These are our favorite sound bars depending on what your exact needs are.

Contact us at editors@time.com.

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