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HW-K650 and Two R1 Wirelss Speakers in 5.1 With KS7000 TV

Pathfinder

Well guys first email sent to all

 

This has gone to Samsung head office in the UK

 

I will now send emails to both the UK and US CEO's and copy you in. 

 

If you haven't received this email sent just now please let me know as I may have missed you; it was a bit of a job collating all the email addresses and hopefully I haven't missed one. 

 

Please follow up my email and copy all in including original email chain of mine going back some months. 

 

Thanks again....... This is not over by a long way

Pathfinder
Pathfinder

Looks like they have bigger issues than soundbar firmware in Korea hehe

 

http://mobile.reuters.com/article/amp/idUSKBN150079 

 

If link doesn't work search "Samsung boss faces arrest as South Korea corruption scandal grows" 

Apprentice

I've just sent this to the head of Samsung UK, but it would appear the email address is blocking my incoming email. So here is my response to Samsung... 

 

Dear Mr Archer, 

 
I would like to take this opportunity to introduce myself. My name is John Macdonald I am and always have been a loyal Samsung supporter, my house is full of Samsung products from mobile phones, to kitchen appliances, to tablets, and TVs (I have 6 Samsung TVs from 32 inch through to 65 inch ). 
 
Having recently built a log cabin in my garden at considerable cost when it came time to install a UHD 4K TV and BluRay system with a 5.1 system the choice for me was always going to lean towards Samsung. 
 
I visited Richer Sounds, John Lewis and Curry's PCWorld, having considered many options from different suppliers from Sony, to Panasonic to LG and Denon, Bose, Sono and many others I chose the 65 inch UHD 4K Samsung TV with 4K BluRay player, HW650 soundbar and subwoofer combination and R1 surround speakers. Why well not only because I believe in the quality of Samsung products, but having observed first hand the quality of the TV image alongside offerings from LGs OLED, Panasonic and Sony, I believed the overall picture quality from Samsung was better. So I had now chosen my TV, which would now form the very foundation and core of my home cinema experience. I had not compromised on anything in my log cabin and despite being advised to go down the route of separate AV amp and speakers I again chose Samsung. For me it was a simple choice, not only did the equipment rate very highly in independent reviews, it looked good and more importantly offered in my opinion an unparalleled level of sound quality and flexibility, even over offerings from Bose and Sonos. I loved the idea of the wifi multiroom app and the complete flexibility of being able to group speakers, or ungroup and operate them independently and wirelessly to drive them through a phone, tablet or my TV home cinema system. I must say I had already came across the forum thread in the Samsung community and although I had grave concerns about the rear speaker issue and the promised software update which was due to arrive, my mind was put to ease by Barry, the Samsung representative from Curry's PCWorld in the Kirkcaldy store. He told me the system worked flawlessly, I asked for a demo and he connected it up through his multiroom app from his phone. Sure enough it worked perfectly and the sound quality was simply divine, he told me all about Samsungs new research and development sound factory in America which was developing in his opinion some of the highest quality speakers on the market. (I should point out that the Sony representative from the same store was telling me differently, he told me there was serious software issues. In fact he said... "Do you know why they are called radiant 360 degrees speakers?" I replied "No" he said "Because the customer leaves the store with them and then brings them straight back again!") However having read the technical information on Samsungs website about the multiroom app and the wireless 5.1 system and Samsungs technology and ability to resolve issues I felt confident to proceed with the sale. 
 
I purchased a pair of 55 and 65 inch UHD 4K TVs, Samsung 4K UHD BluRay player, Samsung Hw-k650 Soundbar and two Samsung R1 surround speakers. I bought them December 18th 2016, the fact that I had to wait almost 10 weeks to get the soundbar did not reduce my excitement and enthusiasm when it finally arrived and I could connect it all together. I had been playing the R1s grouped together, sure I sometimes had difficulty losing wifi connection and they would ungroup unexpectedly and I'd have to search for them through the multiroom app and regroup them, but it was worth it because the sound quality was simply amazing when they did work. 
 
So eventually all the equipment arrived and I was ready to set it all up, this is where my problems began. I simply could not get them to connect, I have a degree in electrical and electronic engineering, I am usually pretty good with technology but I simply could not get them to work. After a week of trying I contacted Samsung customer service, I can fast forward by saying that I personally spent at least 2 to 3 hours each time I was on the phone for a total of about 4 or 5 times, so I have personally spent between 12 to 15 hours acting as the remote operator whilst the Samsung technical support would try to resolve matters. Each time we would go through the same script, eventually I knew it off by heart and could almost jump ahead of the operator. Each time I would be told it was now fixed. I remember on one occasion trying to explain that I was actually sitting in my log cabin holding the R1 speakers right against my right and left ears to hear them and I was told by the lady on the phone that it was now working as it should and that it was simply a surround sound effect! Now I have listened to many 5.1 systems and I can assure you from my seated position I could not hear anything from the surround speakers. It was clear to me the system was not working as a 5.1 wifi system. (PS I can give you my fault reference number and you will be able to track my numerous calls to your call centre and technical support) 
 
I then carried out further research and came across the Samsung community forum, I joined and added my findings, my user name is DreamTallStart. I tried the optical work around, but my rear speaker levels were still too low due my personal taste and I had serious synch issues, my soundbar sounded distant and tinny, and I had a constant rumbling sound from the subwoofer like an HGV lorry driving past, I would say it even does this with my SkyQ box paused. In the end I had to ungroup the R1s and I now just use the soundbar via Bluetooth from the TV. This was not the 5.1 cinematic experience I had hoped for. 
 
I would add at this point that when I do group them all in 5.1 wifi surround via my Samsung phone or my Samsung tablet and play through the multiroom app and my Deezer (which I got the 12 months free with the sounbar) and Spotify which I already had, the sound quality is awesome. The sounbar is clear and loud with great control and balance, the subwoofer has great bass you can "feel" it through the cabin and my surround speakers have superb clear loud volume. It is as if I am immersed in a theatre of sound. It is a truly awesome experience. 
 
Then I try to connect to the TV and suddenly it's all gone again, the usual issues, no rear volume on the R1 surrounds, a sub that just rumbles at the same frequency irrespective of what's in the TV and a tinny sounbar that sounds worse than the internal speakers on the TV. I have tried everything but to no avail. 
 
My wife wanted me to simply take it all back, as it does not work as described on your website or by the Samsung representative. 
 
So why don't I? Because I am a loyal Samsung customer, I believe in your products, never give up at the first hurdle. I can see the potential in this system. My wife's phone is an iPhone, amazingly when she downloaded the multiroom app and grouped everything in 5.1wifi she was blown away playing her favourite tracks through Spotify, she has a mini mobile rechargeable Bose speaker and she was thoroughly impressed. So why can't my Samsung TV work with my Samsung 5.1 speakers? Apple to Samsung speakers works, but not my Samsung TV to Samsung speakers! 
 
I have kept an eye daily on the forum and read every post, I have downloaded the latest software and tried every suggestion from the community. However I still do not have a workable or useable system. 
 
I should add at this point, that I even contacted your approved Samsung repair centre in Edinburgh, he explained to me how to try and get it to work, by setting the speaker level on the soundbar to minimum and the rears to maximum manually then grouping them and setting the sounbar at - 6 and the surrounding at +6,  I tried it knowing fine well this had already been tried and had failed. As expected running through the test gave very high volumes on the rears with "surround left"  and "surround right" and "front" volume so low it was hardly distinguishable. However as soon as you click done, the rear volumes are pulled back down to no volume again as soon as you try to bring the sounbar volume back up. I called him back and offered to take in the soundbar and surround speakers to connect to one of his TVs as he described them as "carry in items". Needless to say he declined. 
 
The Samsung store representative Barry (lovely chap by the way and very pro Samsung) was unable to help me, it turns out he just works for an agency he isn't even employed by Samsung! 
 
This has been going on for months now, it had taken over my life, I kept hoping and praying the latest firmware update would resolve these issues. The latest one made no difference, I'm still using only the sounbar via Bluetooth as it will not work via 5.1 WiFi.
 
Your statement that the system is now working to an acceptable level of performance is simply not true and unacceptable and stating that there will be no further software updates is simply heartbreaking to those who have purchased the equipment in good faith. We are your customers, we bought your products and we are at the coal face having spent our hard earned cash. We can assure you the latest firmware has not resolved the issues. Instead of listening to feedback from your engineers, can you please listen to the equipment itself first hand. Then you will have a true experience of our issues! 
 
So what do I do now Mr Archer, should I return all the products as they were all bought as a system, a system which is not operating as described (I would add they were bought via a debit card). Or should I just put up with almost £4000 worth of equipment which is not working as described in your technical specification hoping for a fix in the future? 
 
Could you please help me to answer that one as I am unable to at the moment. 
 
I look forward to receiving a response from you. 
 
 
Kindest regards
 
 
Pathfinder

Thanks...... May be blocked as you attached files. I did this before and had the same results. 

 

If anyone wants to join in its not too late just pm me your email address's 

First Poster

Dear John

 

Having seen the trouble that many Samsung customers have had with the Samsung TV, K650 soundbar and R1 speaker combination when used as a surround sound solution (including me), I was able to return all my gear to Richer Sounds without penalty and swap for a far superior combination of HEOS homecinema and 2x HEOS 5 HS2. The smartphone app and setup instructions are so easy and the quality is truly amazing. Although twice the price of the Samsung solution I at least have a system I am comfortable with. Interestingly, the rear speakers also occasionally ungroup themselves when you first turn the TV on each day but they rediscover each other. I also use an optical in for the TV to soundbar (which was also my preferred setup when I had the Samsungs).

 

I have always been a huge fan of Samsung products and always thought that combining components from the same manufacturer would be the obvious solution. Clearly I was wrong. I'm pleased that I made transition but I sympathise with you all

 

best wishes and good luck

Highlighted
First Poster

Hi,

I have sent the following message to the CEO using the link Robbienobs supplied.  Initially, it did not send but I think this was a time-out so I refereshed the form and pasted my communication back in the blank field and it was dispatched successfully.

 

"Dear CEO,

 

I have taken the trouble to contact you as I am very dissatisfied with the performance of my Samsung HW-K650 sound bar when trying to use them wirelessly as a WiFi connected 5.1 surround system. This email is in support of the contact made with you under the above customer reference.

Personally, I bought a new Samsung UE49KS8000 TV in Oct 16 and after much online research, I bought the HW-K650 3.1 sound bar because it offered the opportunity to create a 5.1 wireless WiFi surround sound system. When, in March 17, I then purchased two Radiant 360 R1's I was impressed by the sound quality. At that stage the speakers did an automatic firmware update. BUT when I set up the system with WiFI grouped to deliver 5.1 surround sound using the official protocol, I was very disappointed to discover that the surround sound experience was woefully inadequate. Within an hour of taking delivery of them, I was considering returning them as faulty but thought I would do some research to see if I was alone with this problem. A brief online search revealed that many others, in the US and UK on the Samsung Community websites., were discussing the poor volume of the R1's in WIFi surround sound mode. There are others. One retailer (Curry UK) product feedback also has customer reviews highlighting this problem.

 

I contacted first-line Samsung customer services who in response, utterly failed to appreciate the fault. Subsequently, the firmware of the HW-K650 and R1's has been remotely updated but this HAS NOT corrected the fault.

Without the support of the UK Samsung Community forums where one member had discovered a method using the optical cable connection to get an acceptable surround sound experience which is very inconvenient to control, I would have returned the speakers as I would have no use for them. Using a cable is claimed by Samsung to be only necessary when the sound bar is used with non-Samsung TV's.

 

The bottom line is that the HW-K650 with R1's connected wirelessly by WiFi to a Samsung smart TV (UE49KS8000) fails to deliver the surround sound experience one would expect, as claimed in the product description. e.g. From a retailers website:

"Create true surround sound without wires

Enjoy the freedom to fill every room of your home with music by adding Samsung Multiroom speakers to the system or create your own wireless 5.1 surround system."

 

It is edifying to compare the R1's rear speaker output using the optical cabled TV-to-sound bar connection with the WiFi wireless set up. In comparison, the wireless setup falls woefully short of satisfactory for me and many others.

 

It is a shame that this one issue, which must be within the ability of your engineers to resolve, blights an otherwise excellent system and concept! I do hope that you can encourage those responsible to find the solution to this fault or lack of performance and accept the gratitude of all those affected.

 

I look forward to receiving your response.

 

Yours faithfully

 

A. Nicol"

 

I hope I have not understated the problem.

Navigator

Wait, Heos has an ability to add additional speakers for 5.1 surround? I was thinking about buying it before I got my Samsung set, but nothing on their site said anything about 5.1 setup with additional speakers. 

 

 

Also, I did notice while binge watching The Walking Dead, that center channel (no matter if using just k650 alone or in 5.1) isn't in fact supported by a subwoofer like someone said here before. 

 

I wonder if it's just another bug on the long list of bugs, or its intentional. 

First Poster
Yes, they work perfectly. Using the app you just drag a speaker into a group and away you go
Pathfinder
Well done Woody12,
If only they would give me a refund!

They did start looking into this but then did a u-turn......... Probably realised they would be opening a can of worms, and would have to do the same for anyone else with same issues
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