The Sonos Beam brings smarts to your home theater setup.
When Sonos launched their first product in 2005, they didn’t just release an impressive new gadget, they basically created an entirely new audio device subcategory: the hi-fidelity wireless speaker. Sonos proved that you didn’t need wires to enjoy high-quality audio, and you didn’t need to go broke doing it wirelessly. Since then, the wireless audio industry has seen countless competitors, and to keep pace, Sonos has continued to refine its product offering. In addition to building larger wireless speakers, Sonos appealed to movie fans by baking their wireless technology into the Playbar soundbar, and, with the release of the recent Sonos One, started integrating the latest-gen voice assistance into their products. This week’s new release, the Sonos Beam smart soundbar, combines those advancements into one unique audio product.
The name of the game with the Sonos Beam is convenience. Soundbars were first created to bring convenience to your family room or den, without sacrificing audio quality. Instead of trying to wire five separate speakers, you plugged in one soundbar that would mimic surround sound. With the Beam soundbar, Sonos aims to make that simple process—and many other typical tasks—even easier. The integration of Alexa voice assistant means that not only can you use your voice to control the volume of the soundbar, but also the hundreds of other devices that can interface with the smart assistant. So, from the comfort of your couch, you can have Alexa dim the lights, adjust the thermostat, or even make a phone call. Integration with just about every streaming service available (61 and counting!) means that you can ask your Sonos Beam to play your favorite playlist on Spotify, a specific station on Pandora, or individual songs from your Apple Music library.
And of course, in addition to the smart features, the Sonos Beam still puts out the hi-fidelity sound that the brand is synonymous with. Inside the Beam are four full-range woofers and a powerful tweeter—each powered by its own Class-D digital amp—and three passive radiators. This combo ensures that even at just 25 1/2 inches long, the Sonos Beam produces sound that rivals a much larger system, with the clarity you’d expect from a dedicated multi-speaker surround sound setup. The Sonos Beam is currently available for pre-order, and is expected to begin shipping by mid-July.