The Sonos playbase sound bar had its problems. It was large, unsightly and looked like it belonged in the low rent apartment of a Best Buy employee. Sonos is now fixing this with the Sonos Beam. The latest in the Sonos family of speaker includes Alexa — and promises Google Assistant support — and it improves your TV sound immensely. Designed as an add-on to your current TV, it can stand alone or connect with the Sonos subwoofer and a few satellite surround speakers for a true surround sound experience. It truly shines alone, however, thanks to its small size and more than acceptable audio range
- Great Design
- Terrifically Priced
- Elegant Size
- Big Amazing Sound
- Lacks pop on Sound Effects in Movies
The Sonos Beam is the best sounding, best looking soundbar you can buy for $300. Its a great way to get started on your Sonos collection and start the ultimate home filling speaker system.
No metal grill on this Sonos, surprisingly it sports a e wrap-around cloth grille of the Beam . You know, the ones most commonly associated with the company’s ultra-budget competition. Yes its a bit of a surprise on a Sonos product. Yet, the speaker retains a Sonos look with its plastic top and the touch control panel that debuted on the One. The pill-shaped Beam is smaller than most other sound bars at just 25.6 inches wide by 2.7 inches high and 3.9 inches deep (68.5 by 651 by 100 mm). You can get it in black or white. Unfortunately, the Beam doesn’t include a wall bracket in the box, but the company will sell you one for an extra $59.
The Beam is two feet long and three inches tall. It comes in black or white and is very unobtrusive in any home theater setup. Interestingly, the product supports HDMI-ARC aka HDMI Audio Return Channel. This standard, introduced in TVs made in the past five years, allows the TV to automatically output audio and manage volume controls via a single HDMI cable.
Not surprisingly, the Beam sounds pretty great too, though not quite at the level of the Playbar or Playbase. The soundstage is wider and the bass reaches lower on both of those models, especially the Playbase, but they’re both significantly larger and more expensive. For its part, Sonos recommends the Beam for small and medium-sizes rooms, where these disadvantages are minimized.
The Sonos Beam does have some liabilities. Ive noticed with the soundbar by itself, it lacks sound and misses on sound effects. Mostly in high action movies with alot of explosions the Beam seems to sound flat, almost like it is dimming down the boost in sound. Im not entirely sure if this is a noise reducing functionality or a issue with the Beam itself> However when paired with other Sonos speakers they seem to fill the air and pick up what the Beam seemed to put down.
The Final Thought
With this low cost, High quality soundbar the Sonos Beam will be picking up a lot more customers and putting them in the Sonos sound world. Much like potato chips, when it comes to Sonos speakers, you cant stop at just one.