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Sonos Speaker Lineup Explained

Sonos basically invented the networked wireless speaker, and in the decade since the PLAY:5 debuted, they’ve continued to evolve and expand their offerings. Today, Sonos offers a refined product selection that offers wireless audio solutions for mutli-room music, movies, and outdoor listening. They’ve been extra popular lately, as countless people are seeking ways to make home life a little more entertaining or add some pleasant tunes to a home office. If you’ve found yourself looking for an easy way to listen to your music library from any room in your home and are considering picking up your first Sonos product, now is as great a time as any—a trio of just-launched promos can save you some cash on the brand’s most popular models. We’ve put together a quick rundown on the entire Sonos speaker lineup.

sonos speaker lineup

The first thing to note is that Sonos speakers are not Bluetooth speakers—they operate using your wi-fi network. What this means is that you cannot send audio from your phone directly to the speaker when you’re somewhere outside of your home network, like at the beach. They’re also not entirely wireless, because they still need to be plugged in to a power outlet. There’s one product that is the exception to both of these rules, which we’ll mention below.

Sonos One — This is the most popular model in the Sonos Speaker lineup. It’s a small speaker, one you can easily find space for on a desk or kitchen counter. But with a separate tweeter and woofer, each powered by a dedicated Class-D amplifier, it still puts out sound that can fill an average room. For bigger, more detailed sound, you can connect two Sonos One speakers into a stereo pair. The Sonos One is also a smart speaker, giving you access to Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa. Now through April 23, you can save $50 on the Sonos One.

Sonos One SL — This is essentially the One, without the built-in smart features. So you’ll get the same great sound and wireless audio features, without access to virtual assistants. It’s also the most affordable Sonos speaker, making it a great entry point into the ecosystem. The Sonos One SL is also on sale for $50 off its regular price, through April 23.

Sonos Move — Consider this the bigger, boomier, go-anywhere version of the Sonos One. The Sonos Move speaker is the exception to those technical requirements that we mentioned earlier. Thanks to Bluetooth functionality and a built-in battery that promises ten hours of playback, the Sonos Move can be used anywhere, even away from wi-fi. Music goes directly from your phone (or other device) directly to the speaker. Dust and splash resistance means you don’t have to worry about it at the beach or on the patio. 

Sonos Play:5 — This is Sonos’ most powerful speaker, easily capable of serving as your home’s main listening system. Three tweeters and three mid-woofers, each powered by a dedicated Class-D amp, give the Play:5 rich, full sound, while the special driver arrangement ensures that sound reaches a wide area around the speaker. Like the Sonos One, a Play:5 can be paired to another unit for greater sound. The Sonos Play:5 is not a smart speaker.

If you’re interested in a Sonos speaker setup that also works well as a TV speaker, you’ll want to consider one of their soundbars. Each of these is optimized to accompany your TV—and will need a physical link to your TV via HDMI or optical cable—while still offering wireless audio streaming from other devices. There are currently three Sonos soundbars available:

Sonos Playbar — Six mid-range woofers and three tweeters give the Sonos Playbar plenty of oomph—perfect for making Hollywood blockbusters come to life, even in a larger room. An optical input lets the Playbar process Dolby Digital. The Playbar does not have any smart functionality.

Sonos Beam — Measuring in at just 2.7 inches tall and around 26 inches wide, the Sonos Beam works pairs well with smaller TVs or TVs with short stands. The Beam features four full-range woofers and one tweeter, each powered by a dedicated amp, and is suggested for small to medium-sized rooms. The Sonos Beam has built-in smart functionality, so you can use it as a portal to Google Assistant or Amazon Alexa. Save $50 on the Sonos Beam through April 23.

Sonos Playbase — Though not literally a soundbar, the Sonos Playbase offers the same basic idea in a unique form factor. As the name suggests, this speaker is a wide base upon which you can set a TV. This makes it a great solution for TVs with minimal stands that don’t offer the clearance to fit even the Beam soundbar. The increased area lets Sonos fit ten amplified drivers inside (six mid-range, three tweeters, and one woofer), so the Playbase puts out big sound. Optical input, an ethernet port, and Sonos wireless make it easy to connect to your TV or other devices.

Sonos Sub — Though all of the Sonos speakers put out respectable sound themselves, there are always times when you could use a bit more bass. That’s where the Sonos Sub comes in, a wireless subwoofer that pairs with any other Sonos speaker to add some boom to the low end—which is great for movies. And for a full home theater experience, you can pair a soundbar and Sonos Sub to a pair of One or Play:5 speakers for a true 5.1 surround sound system.

Here’s Carl running through the entire Sonos lineup on video, so you can get an idea of the size and shape of each of these products. And have a look at the second video to learn about Sonos’ other audio products.

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