Fluance AB40 review: A bargain soundbase with a big footprint

Deciding on a home theater setup is an overwhelming and expensive task that can easily empty your wallet. But the Fluance AB40 sound bar proves that you do not have to drain your bank account for excellent sound. This aptX compatible speaker may not seem extraordinary, but for just over $ 200: the quality of the sound is nothing to sniff.

Who is the Fluance AB40?

The Fluance AB40 measures 66 cm in length and weighs 10.9 kg. Even the totally black paint job can not slim down this great sound base.

They are for listeners who want a home theater audio configuration without waste of insurmountable sums of money. If this is your first or fifth home audio purchase, Fluance AB40 is a bargain.

Given the uncomplicated nature of the configuration, the AB40 is a suitable option if you feel intimidated by optical inputs and the like. While includes an optical input for those who wish to expand the system, it will do very well with connecting the included AC adapter and linking it via Bluetooth.

What's Included

Get a Fluance brand remote control, a 100-200 V AC adapter, a quick start guide and the 10.9 kg AB40 sound base.

Structure and design of Fluance AB40

There is no way to avoid it; the Fluance AB40 is great. And while the wooden cabinet looks good, the particle board feels cheap to the touch. However, on the back of the speaker you will find a tuned side port, which helps improve the low-end frequency response. Accented bass notes, which are excellent for action and horror movies, as well as your music.

  Review of Fluance AB40: an angled image of the sound base on a white wooden stand.

Under the metal grid there are two tweeters and four aluminum controllers.

Wrapping around the entire front element is a metal grid that protects dual 1 "tweeters and four 3" aluminum dynamic controllers powered by an internal 90W amplifier. The outermost controllers are angled outward at 35 °, allowing a more even distribution of sound than just the front speakers. In addition, dedicated tweeters help accurate reproduction of treble frequencies.

Integrated into the wooden cabinet on the top panel are four touch controls. If you lose the remote control, you can access the most important functions directly from the sound base, including turning on / off the AB40, choosing your media source and making volume adjustments.

If you're looking for a sexy and compact solution for all your home theater needs, you'll want to keep looking. With 66cm in length and 36cm in depth, it means that the Fluance AB40 is a piece of conspicuous hardware, no matter what shade of black you use. In addition, the weight of 10.9kg (24 lb) may not seem heavy, but the cumbersome shape makes it difficult to maneuver around for placement.

What can I control with the remote control?

  Fluance AB40 review: An angled top-down image of the Fluance remote control next to a Scepter TV.

Included with the Fluance AB40 is a remote control that must be used to make volume adjustments.

  • On / Off
  • 3D sound mode
  • Mute
  • Play, pause and skip tracks
  • Alternative between bass boost and standard sound
  • Alternate and pairing source with Bluetooth
  • ] Volume settings

It is worth noting that when using the AB40 sound stand, you can not use the remote control of your TV or cable set-top box to adjust the volume. If you wish to do so, you must use the Fluance remote control or the touch controls on the top panel. It's not a big problem, but it's a strange limitation.


  Fluance AB40 revision: a shot centered on the three inputs of the sound base located on the back of the unit.

With aptX support, users can connect via Bluetooth without latency issues.

Hidden in a rear hole are three inputs: optical, AC adapter and auxiliary. Like the Fluance Ai40 bookshelf speakers, the AB40 is designed with simplicity in mind. For wireless listening, the speaker must be automatically connected to a designated paired device after the initial pairing process. Then you can stay connected for three meters. However, it is difficult for you to maintain a connection if you move to an adjoining room.

Another minor problem relates to the automatic connection functionality. With multiple devices linked to the Fluance AB40, you have difficulty connecting automatically to a device. However, an easy solution is to initialize Bluetooth on the desired source device before the others. It's a nuisance, but a solution, nonetheless.

What do all LED flashes mean?

  Fluance AB40 review: Angle image below the sound base showing the four touch controls at the top.

A tactile response interface can be accessed from the top of the wooden cabinet.

  • White: optical connection
  • Green: auxiliary connection
  • Blue: Bluetooth connection
  • When turning the 3D sound mode on and off, the LED will blink twice when enabled and once when disabled.

How does the AB40 sound?

Even without the bass boost activated, it has an intense bass sound. While this may not be ideal for music because the overemphasis can be irritating, it is ideal for movies and television shows. In the scene of the film Emelie a car is rolled up, its engines resounding palpably. While the bass port does not have the same effect as a designated subwoofer, it takes you most of the way there. In addition, the voice of Anna's character is still clearly transmitted within the scene.

When switching between switching the 3D sound mode on and off, the same scene is more immersive than listening through the speakers that go down from my TV. And having it on made it look like autumn was in the air. I could hear the faint wind crunching between the crisp leaves before and during the driveway.

  Fluance AB40 review: The wooden cabinet that connects to the metal grid, which is wrapped lightly on the side panels.

Although the design is simple, the seams between the wood and the metal pieces are perfectly aligned.

After having watched this scene repeatedly with 3D mode turned on and off, it is safe to say that it makes a difference. But if you want true surround sound, you'll have to shell out a little more cash for something like the LG SK10Y, or at least something compatible with Dolby Atmos. However, for just over $ 200, it would be very hard to complain.

It is worth mentioning, however, that the issue of the Fluance AB40 is important. If it was 60º off the axis of the direct projection of the base, the scene in question sounded unnatural despite the peripheral drivers at an angle. When organizing a movie night, place your least favorite people on the outer edges of the group because listening in this way is disorienting.

Bass amplification compared to standard mode

When opting for bass boost, the low end gets a lot of emphasis which, again, is ideal for movies and TV shows. That said, if you are buying the AB40 sound base for music, you will want to use the standard mode. The built-in bass port still works to improve the bass response, but it will not be dominant. The only instance in which bass reinforcement may be preferable for music is if you are organizing a party. In that case, of course you're going to want a bump on that bass.

Should you buy it?

Yes, just like the speakers on the company's bookshelf, the Fluance AB40 is an absolute steal. By offering aptX support along with an auxiliary and optical input, users are free to connect as they wish without feeling overwhelmed by the options.

  Review Fluance AB40: a close-up of the loudspeaker and one of the front controllers.

The Fluance AB40 is a cheap soundstage with excellent bass response.

Naturally, there are some quirks of the sound basis. On the one hand, sitting outside the angle of the main controllers can result in a listening experience that distracts when watching a movie and limited to volume adjustment through the remote control; it's just annoying, but these are small complaints given the reasonable price of $ 210. 19659054] Are you still looking? Read on our list of the best computer speakers

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