Best Sonos speakers 2022: Which one to buy

Sonos has never had more speaker options than it does now. Once known primarily for its multi-room audio system, Sonos has branched out into soundbars and portables so you can spread sound throughout your home and beyond.

But more options mean harder decisions to make when it comes to which Sonos speaker to buy. Which one should you start with if you’re new to Sonos? What should be the next addition to your existing system? We’ll break it all down for you.

The best Sonos speaker in every way

The One is the best combination of sound quality, features, and price in the Sonos lineup. With support for multiple voice assistants, it can also be a hub for your smart home.

The best portable Sonos speaker

The Roam packs big sound into a small package and is easy to pull out of your Sonos system thanks to its 10-hour battery and Bluetooth connectivity.

The best Sonos sound bar

The Arc produces wide sound, clear vocals and rumbling bass without a subwoofer. And it supports Dolby Atmos, helping it deliver immersive surround sound.

sound

The $219 Sonos One is great for first-time Sonos buyers or as an addition to an existing Sonos system because it can do so much. A single One delivers spacious sound with good bass and clear vocals, which is impressive for a device that measures just over 6 inches.

But pair two Unos together and you’ll be amazed at the spaciousness of the stereo sound they produce. You can even use Ones with a Sonos Arc or Beam sound bar to create true surround sound while you watch TV.

Beyond sound quality, the One is packed with features. It comes with Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant inside (although you can only activate one at a time), so you can use your voice to play music and control your smart devices. If you don’t want voice control, you can save a few bucks by getting the $199 Sonos One SL. The speaker also includes room correction software, called TruePlay, that gets the most out of the speaker by adjusting its output to sound best in the space you’re using it in.

Sonos roaming

Our upgrade pick for the best Bluetooth speaker, the $179 Sonos Roam offers the sound quality you’ve come to expect from Sonos with the benefits of an on-the-go bundle. It is waterproof and can withstand shocks without breaking. The 10-hour battery life isn’t as good as some Bluetooth speakers, like the Ultimate Ears Boom 3 (15 hours), but it should be enough to get the party going.

The flexibility of the Roam is what sets it apart. It can connect via Bluetooth or Wi-Fi, so when you’re at home it can be part of your larger Sonos system, but you’re not limited when you want to venture out. Its ruggedness makes it ideal as a bathroom or kitchen speaker, which you can then take with you when you hit the road.

Like the One, it works with Alexa or Google Assistant (Sonos recently released a version without voice control, the $159 Roam SL). And it has automatic TruePlay, so it adjusts the sound to your environment without you having to do anything.

Jacob Krol/CNN

The $899 Sonos Arc has been one of the best soundbars since its release, and it’s our top recommendation for people willing to splurge. It delivers big, room-filling sound when you watch movies or shows, and produces impressive low-end even though it doesn’t come with a subwoofer (if you want more noise, you can add a wireless subwoofer for $749). With support for Dolby Atmos, Arc provides precise surround sound even without separate rear speakers. Or you can add two Ones and the Sub for true 5.1 sound.

The Arc sounds just as good playing music as it does when watching TV, adding another option when you’re listening to music throughout the house.

But to achieve its big sound and house its 11 drivers, the Arc comes with a big footprint. At 45 x 4.5 x 3.4 inches, not everyone will have room for it. That’s where the smaller Beam fits into the Sonos lineup (see other Sonos speakers to consider below).

Sonos speakers offer excellent sound quality across the lineup and are easier to set up and use than most multi-room systems. But they’re not cheap: the $159 Roam SL is the cheapest Sonos model (Ikea makes the $119 Symfonisk in collaboration with Sonos, though).

You will need the free Sonos app to set up and control the devices. The app allows you to create groups of speakers, play the same music in different rooms, or you can play different songs on each unit. The app also allows you to adjust the sound to better match what you like to listen to. If you prefer, you can use Apple’s AirPlay 2 or Spotify Connect to play tunes on the speakers instead of using the Sonos app.

All of the speakers we recommend here use the Sonos S2 app. If you have older Sonos devices, they may only be compatible with Sonos S1, your original app. You can’t mix S1 and S2 speakers in a group, a source of controversy among long-time Sonos fans.

In addition to the speakers, Sonos also offers the $449 Dock, which can be connected to a receiver to make it part of your Sonos system, and the $699 Amplifier, which can be used with non-powered speakers.

One hole in the Sonos lineup is the lack of an outdoor speaker, though they’ve teamed up with Sonance to fill that gap.

If the Arc is too big or expensive, the Sonos Beam soundbar offers very good audio in a slimmer package. At 25.6 x 3.9 x 2.7 inches, it fits almost any size TV or room. The sound isn’t quite as big as what you get from the Arc, but you’ll be amazed at what the little unit can produce. The latest version adds Atmos support to enhance an already impressive soundbar.

Sonos’ first portable speaker focused on sound quality rather than portability. The $399 Sonos Move is like a giant One that you can take with you. At 9.4 x 6.3 x 5 inches and 6.6 pounds, you won’t want to take the Move on a hike, but it offers the flexibility to go with you. It has an 11-hour battery and is waterproof. Like the Roam, it has Bluetooth and automatic TruePlay, but thanks to its size, the Move produces a more robust sound than its smaller brother.

If you want a center speaker but don’t want a soundbar, the $549 Sonos Five is your best bet. Produces rich bass and wide sound, with crisp highs and rich vocals. It also has a 3.5mm input so you can connect a turntable or other wired source. However, it does not offer voice control.

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