Want sweet beats throughout your house? Sonos is the original multi-room music maestro – and its speaker line-up has never looked more comprehensive. Here’s our guide to picking the best Sonos gear for you.
From soundbars to subwoofers to portable speakers, there’s now a Sonos for every space, indoors and out. Whether you sync a stereo pair or hook up a bunch via Wi-Fi, the Sonos system makes it a cinch to bring tunes to every room.
Not sure where to start? Bedroom, living room, garden: we’ve tested the best Sonos speakers in every position – and recommended our favourites in the list below. So whether you want better audio beneath your TV or a smart solution to usurp your Hi-Fi, you’ll find your ideal Sonos speaker here.
Sonos One (Gen 2)
Styled like the Play:1, the Sonos One (Gen 2) benefits from a key additional skill: voice assistant support – which means you can ask Alexa or Google Assistant to fire up your favourite playlist, no phone necessary. And because Sonos now works with more streaming services than ever, you can source your tunes from pretty much any platform – including Spotify, Apple Music, Deezer, Tidal and TuneIn.
So it’s not picky, which is good news for music fans. But there’s an even better headline for audiophiles: its sound quality is basically identical to the Play:1’s. Despite its relatively dinky dimensions, the One delivers plenty of rich low-end punch, without drowning out the detailed mid-range. Vocals are clear and well-projected, while treble is clean and controlled. All from a compact package that’s simple to control and easy to position.
What’s new with Gen 2? More memory, more processing power and Bluetooth Low Energy on-board. That’s pretty much it. Otherwise, it’s the same superb smart speaker as it was before. You can still combine two Ones to create a stereo pair, and you can still ask your digital helper for assistance as you need.
Stuff says: ★★★★★
If you care about music and want a speaker you can speak to, the Sonos One (Gen 2) should be close to the top of your wishlist
Dimensions: 162x120x120mm • Weight: 1.85kg • Speakers: 1x midwoofer, 1x tweeter • Connectivity: Wi-Fi, ethernet, AirPlay 2, Spotify Connect • Voice assistant: Alexa, Google Assistant
The Move (below) might have been the first fully wireless Sonos device, but it was hardly the type of speaker you’d stick in your backpack for a weekend away. That honour goes to the Roam: light at 430g and compact at 17cm tall, it’s a properly portable speaker that goes toe-to-toe with rivals like JBL.
With classically understated Sonos styling, the Move’s robust, waterproof build means it won’t conk out at the beach. Positioned vertically or horizontally, Auto TruePlay smarts adjust the sonic output based on where you place it. For a Sonos speaker, sound quality is OK. But for a speaker of this size, it’s seriously impressive – easily matching its best rivals for bass impact and balance.
There’s Bluetooth on-board for easy streaming, but unlike your average portable speaker, the Move also features Wi-Fi connectivity for easy integration into your Sonos setup. When you’re using the Roam at home, Sound Swap can automatically switch audio to the nearest speaker.
It also supports a whole host of streaming services, plus Alexa and Google Assistant. Battery life isn’t world-beating at 10 hours, but its feature set, sound quality and connectivity options make the Roam a properly versatile option for go-anywhere audio.
Stuff says: ★★★★★
A smart, stylish portable speaker with solid sound quality: the Sonos Roam ticks all the right boxes
Dimensions: 168x62x60mm • Weight: 430g • Speakers: 1x midwoofer, 1x tweeter • Connectivity: Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 5.0, USB-C, AirPlay 2, Spotify Connect • Voice assistant: Alexa, Google Assistant
Sonos took its sweet time to make a battery-powered wireless speaker. Luckily, it was entirely worth the wait: movable and built to last, the Move is an attractive package that’s splash-resistant and topped by handy touch controls. It also has the best wireless range of any Sonos speaker, so you shift it to the garden and keep the tunes coming.
And those tunes sound sweet indeed. Equipped with a forward-facing mid/bass driver and downward-facing tweeter, the Move is more than punchy enough to deliver the beats outdoors. But despite how hard it hits, there’s real control and authority to the bass – and plenty of texture too, matched by poise and detail in the mids. In fact, the Move excels in every respect: it’s comfortable with big dynamic variation and offers a sizeable soundstage.
Auto Trueplay smarts mean the Move can detect when it’s been moved and adjust its audio output to suit the new surroundings. You can also tweak the EQ in the excellent partner app. It’s super easy to integrate into your Sonos setup – and when you add countless streaming services and voice assistant support into the mix, it shapes up as a no-brainer.
Stuff says: ★★★★★
With big, bold sound and seamless network integration, Sonos’ first portable speaker was totally worth the wait
Dimensions: 240x160x126mm • Weight: 3kg • Speakers: 1x woofer, 1x tweeter • Connectivity: Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 5.0, USB-C, AirPlay 2, Spotify Connect • Voice assistant: Alexa, Google Assistant
Sonos Beam (Gen 2)
Not the biggest nor most advanced Sonos soundbar, the Beam is still a winning package: Sonos has managed to squeeze some serious tech into a streamlined slab that’s small enough to sit beneath screens of pretty much any size.
With identical proportions to its predecessor, the second-gen Beam is only set apart by its polycarbonate grille – replacing the fabric finish which fronted the first edition. Flip it around and you’ll find a minimal array of inputs and outputs, including a single HDMI port – now an eARC number.
Why’s that significant? Because it has the bandwidth to carry higher quality streams, including Dolby Atmos. The second-gen Beam features the same acoustic architecture as the first, but Sonos now employs psychoacoustic techniques across five speaker arrays (versus three on the original Beam) to trick your ears into believing sound is around and above you.
Without upward-firing speakers, it’ll never deliver as much immersion as a full Atmos speaker setup. But the Gen 2 does a surprisingly effective job of replicating overhead effects – and the soundstage is impressively expansive for a compact soundbar. It’s a simple, effective solution for superior sound – and you can always add a Sub if you want more oomph.
Stuff says: ★★★★★
The addition of virtual Atmos magic makes an already excellent compact soundbar even more appealing
Dimensions: 651x100x69mm • Weight: 2.8kg • Speakers: 4x woofers, 1x tweeter • Connectivity: Wi-Fi, HDMI eARC, optical, ethernet, IR, AirPlay 2, Spotify Connect • Voice assistant: Alexa, Google Assistant
Basically a re-branded Play:5 with extra processing power, the Sonos Five is the least intelligent Sonos speaker in this line-up. It has the same design, the same six drivers inside and still no voice assistant support. So what does it have? Sound quality in spades.
Designed to deliver outstanding audio over Wi-Fi, the Sonos Five serves up big, authoritative sound that’s wide and spacious too. If you’re replacing a full Hi-Fi system with a Sonos speaker, this is the one to do it with.
Its clean, streamlined chassis can be stood up or laid flat: the Five will cleverly detect how it’s positioned and adjust output to suit. If tinkering is your thing and you’ve got an iOS device, you can also deploy Trueplay tuning tech to tweak the listening experience.
Cash to spare? You can combine two Fives to create an extremely capable stereo system, or use the pair as left-right surround separates to accompany a Sonos soundbar and Sub. The Five also features that rare thing among Sonos speakers: a 3.5mm aux-in – so you can hook up a turntable, tape deck or pretty much any other analogue source.
Stuff says: ★★★★★
A big, grown-up speaker with limited smarts but plenty of power
Dimensions: 364x203x154mm • Weight: 6.36kg • Speakers: 3x midwoofers, 3x tweeters • Connectivity: Wi-Fi, ethernet, 3.5mm line-in, AirPlay 2, Spotify Connect
Sonos Sub (Gen 3)
In the world of subwoofers, the Sonos Sub is a work of art. Not a rumbling behemoth to hide to the side of the TV, this is a bass-maker you’ll be proud to display. Despite its 16KG heft, the Sub benefits from comparatively slim dimensions. And because it can be oriented vertically or horizontally, it’s easier to tuck away than most competitors – especially as wireless connectivity means it only needs a power cable.
But what does the Sub actually do? Add great big dollops of extra bass to any Sonos speaker system, that’s what. It makes most sense as a sidekick to the Beam or Arc, giving cinematic soundtracks proper punch – but it can also complement Sonos’ music boxes.
Yes, it’s an expensive upgrade. And no, it’s not exactly subtle. While the Gen 3 benefits from more memory and an upgraded processor inside, it’s sonic delivery is hardly nuanced. But if you’re looking for loud, proud and powerful, this is the accessory your Sonos setup needs. Well-heeled and ready to rumble? The third-gen also supports pairing two Subs in the same room, if you really want to annoy the neighbours.
Stuff says: ★★★★☆
A bit of a blunt instrument – but if extra bass is what you’re after, the Sonos Sub certainly delivers
Dimensions: 402x389x158mm • Weight: 16kg • Connectivity: Wi-Fi, ethernet
Adding Dolby Atmos to a soundbar wasn’t a new idea. But Sonos found a way to make it sound groundbreaking. Successor to the Playbar, the Arc is designed to live beneath your TV and add superior audio to your viewing experience – without a full surround setup.
It looks like a soundbar, but also like a Sonos speaker – largely thanks to its matte finish, acoustic grille and impeccable build quality. It’s lengthy at 114cm, but the limited height and depth give it a relatively low profile. Inside are 11 drivers: two firing upwards, one at each end and eight carefully angled along the front of the bar.
It makes a convincing go of delivering that fabled Atmos immersion. Every element of an Atmos soundtrack is given plenty of breathing space, separate from other elements. There’s no shortage of detail or dynamism, plus the Arc does a decent job bringing in surround effects. It can be subtle, too – and while bass is substantial, it’s also nuanced.
Paired with an excellent partner app, alongside all of the smarts and connectivity options we’ve come to expect from a Sonos speaker, the Arc absolutely delivers.
Stuff says: ★★★★★
Sonos’ first Dolby Atmos soundbar delivers big-screen sound to complete the cinematic experience
Dimensions: 1142x116x87mm • Weight: 6.25kg • Speakers: 8x woofers, 3x tweeters • Connectivity: Wi-Fi, HDMI eARC, optical, ethernet, IR, AirPlay 2, Spotify Connect • Voice assistant: Alexa, Google Assistant