Introducing Trueplay and the New PLAY:5

  • 29 September 2015
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Today we’re excited to announce our newest product, the all new PLAY:5. The original PLAY:5 still sounds great and we’ve upgraded it in almost every way.

The new PLAY:5 has our best sounding player yet. It's got six synchronized, custom-designed drivers, each with its own Class-D amp, and three mid-woofers for mid-range frequencies. There’s also a touch interface for convenient play/pause, volume adjustment, and changing tracks with a swipe. The new PLAY:5 also has six internal antennas, for the best wifi in any orientation. Find out more about the new PLAY:5 here: http://blog.sonos.com/news/meet-trueplay-and-the-all-new-play5/. We know you’ll love it as soon as you have the chance to hear it.

Along with the new PLAY:5, we will be launching an exciting new software development we call Trueplay. This is a speaker tuning software above and beyond basic equalization options which uses the Sonos software on an iOS controller to adjust your speakers to deliver great sound in any room of your home.

Finally, in the next few days, we’ll be introducing HLS streaming for the BBC via an update to our public beta for Sonos version 6.0. We’ll post a separate announcement with information here when the next public beta update is available.

The new PLAY:5 and Trueplay will be available later this year, and you can sign up here to be notified when the PLAY:5 is available for purchase: http://www.sonos.com/new-play-5-smart-speaker

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242 replies

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I see your point about a dedicated controller offering the stability for Sonos...but I don't think that is the future for any device manufacturer. And, I would venture to say that the vast majority of people want fewer controllers lying around, not more.
I don't believe a phone or tablet will ever will ever make a satisfactory universal remote and you will never achieve stability that way. The Neeo remote might accomplish that goal and if they add a microphone to the next generation of Neeo maybe that will provide the stable platform that Sonos needs for Trueplay.
It's possible to calibrate Android microphones, see my thread regarding ELAC, who do it for their new line of subwoofers. I'm certain Sonos engineers Are Working On it.
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upstatemike - I appreciate your thoughts, but I am of the opposite opinion on the phone/tablet being a great universal remote. But part of that is that I don't have young kids and have built my home systems around the use of smartphones/tablets.

I certainly would not complain if Sonos had a dedicated remote, but would not purchase myself.
https://en.community.sonos.com/wireless-speakers-228992/dsp-room-correction-43916
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A possible solution to the mic situation is for SONOS to provide one that plugs into the mic input of the phone,laptop etc.
They will then have a known starting point.
A Sonos supplied mic is how I thought they would go whenever room response DSP was to be offered. It need not be very expensive these days. Do all phones accept input from a typical mic or are there physical and electrical compatibility issues?
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I would imagine most phones, if not all, would accept a mic via the headphone socket due to hands free laws,in the UK at least.
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The mic performance/behaviour is probably where most of the difference occurs and if this can be known/calibrated at source any noise, from phones, can be averaged out.

A lot of phone mics are probably covered in fluff, jean fluff is probably more dense than handbag fluff 🙂
Is there any update now to when Trueplay will be available to the rest of us that aren't in the beta?
Is there any update now to when Trueplay will be available to the rest of us that aren't in the beta?
Trueplay requires iOS, and iOS controllers don't feature in public betas. It therefore follows that Trueplay will only be generally available when the production release is made. No-one outside Sonos knows when that might be.
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Is there any update now to when Trueplay will be available to the rest of us that aren't in the beta?
Trueplay requires iOS, and iOS controllers don't feature in public betas. It therefore follows that Trueplay will only be generally available when the production release is made. No-one outside Sonos knows when that might be.


Just as ratty said, we'll be announcing as soon as the release data is ready to be made public, but the first time to test it will be when it comes out. We're excited to hear what you have to think about it when it comes out.
While waiting for Trueplay, below is a comment in a review and similar ones are to be found in others:

"In their normal positions, with ample space around them, we noticed a minimal difference when we turned Trueplay on or off. But when we placed the Play:5 behind the sofa and re-tuned it, the difference was far more significant. That's where Trueplay really shows its worth: by avoiding the muddy sound that can occur when a speaker it too close to a wall."

Many of us that know even a little about home audio are going to keep their speakers in at least halfway decent places to start with. And almost no one will, or will feel the need to place it behind the sofa - not even people that know little about obtaining good sound quality in the home. Given this, it will be interesting to see how Trueplay fares at my home, where speaker placement is close to optimal.

I have a suspicion that in many real world cases Trueplay is going to deliver sound that is different, but not necessarily better.

Time will tell.
Well no, if Trueplay finds the sound is already optimal it shouldn't make any changes. You might find you don't like the sound if you're the sort of person that likes your music drowning in bass (which seems to be a lot of people) but that's a different matter.
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I think many people will have speakers that are in sub-optimal places when you consider the number of people who don't live in large homes with "standard" rooms and when you factor in partners who may not be so keen to have large and ugly (I don't think Sonos speakers are ugly but partners may do!) speakers on stands in "ideal" room places - In fact I can think of many partners who would actively seek to "hide" speakers behind furniture as they wouldn't fit in with a room's décor.
Many listeners don't like "flat" response, they prefer more bass or treble. I'm not criticizing the listener, only making an observation. For this type of listener, Trueplay is not a very useful feature.

For the "flat" fans, I hope that reviewers publish some curves -- along with a discussion about what the curves imply. Trueplay improves an already remarkably smooth response.
Another review said that what it does is bump up the midrange a little and roll back the extremes - in places where it does not need to do much else. The resultant elevation in mid range presence may be a listener preference of many. One thing Trueplay does not do yet is to specify a music genre to be played for the tuning process. Different genres may benefit from different tuning approaches.

In any case, a rapid way to defeat it is a welcome feature.

Curves would be very interesting, but very few reviewers do that. The only place I have seen these for Sonos kit is the Brent Butterworth play 1 review.
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Trueplay is designed to compensate for acoustical properties of the room each player it is placed in. Some rooms absorb high frequencies, some rooms reflect too much bass, etc.. Trueplay Tuning gives each player a flatter 'default' tonal quality relative to the room it is placed in, which can then be further fine tuned with the bass, treble and loudness controls that already exist to suit your personal preference. Obviously everyone's Opinion varies, but in my experience I feel Trueplay tuning makes each player's baseline response sound brighter and clearer overall. Once tuning has been completed, it can be switched on and off with the difference noticeable immediately.
Many listeners don't like "flat" response, they prefer more bass or treble. I'm not criticizing the listener, only making an observation. For this type of listener, Trueplay is not a very useful feature.

For the "flat" fans, I hope that reviewers publish some curves -- along with a discussion about what the curves imply. Trueplay improves an already remarkably smooth response.


Stereophile, unfortunately, isn't going to measure "lifestyle" speakers. Hopefully Brent Butterworth will review and measure them, as he did the Play:1.

http://stereos.about.com/od/Wireless/fl/Review-Sonos-Play1.htm
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Many listeners don't like "flat" response, they prefer more bass or treble. I'm not criticizing the listener, only making an observation. For this type of listener, Trueplay is not a very useful feature.

For the "flat" fans, I hope that reviewers publish some curves -- along with a discussion about what the curves imply. Trueplay improves an already remarkably smooth response.


heres a review with some curvy things !
http://arstechnica.co.uk/gadgets/2015/10/sonos-play5-review-the-best-sounding-wireless-speaker-system-weve-ever-used/
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heres a review with some curvy things !
http://arstechnica.co.uk/gadgets/2015/10/sonos-play5-review-the-best-sounding-wireless-speaker-system-weve-ever-used/


Thanks for sharing Nick, that's great review with curvy things!

The physical volume and play/pause buttons have been ditched, in favour of capacitive ones that light up. While that might ring alarm bells for anyone into who's had a cat brush up against an Xbox 360 in the middle of a heated Halo game, the buttons aren't overly sensitive. Sadly, though, I can't confirm whether they're actually cat-proof.


Funny story, this is something that we've been looking into for a while. There was a significant part of the internal hardware beta looking for employees with cats just to test if this would be an issue. There's been a long standing observation (I can't quite call it a problem) where pets find Sonos players to be warm and comfortable perches, at times causing players to start playing in the middle of the night by pressing the buttons on top. The new PLAY:5 went through what testing was possible to try and minimize undesired, pet-caused audio playback. We'll see how the world-wide cat population behaves with their new sonic housemates.

As far as Trueplay is concerned, it will absolutely make a more noticeable difference in some homes over others, it's all about the acoustics in your rooms and where the units are positioned. Even if it only makes a subtile change, it may be a positive change nonetheless, and of course, if you don't like the way it sounds for some reason, you will always have the option of turning Trueplay off. Though we don't expect that to happen much.

We can't wait to hear what you all have to say about the new PLAY:5 and Trueplay when you have the chance to try them out.
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just received a mail regarding IOS compatibility that Sonos 6.0 release (with Trueplay) will be available as of tomorrow, 10 Nov
Just to clarify :-

i) will Trueplay work on all existing Sonos devices, presumably with a software update, or will it only work with the new Play5 and beyond?
ii) if it does work with older units, do we have any idea (or even a vague plan) of when a mic solution for non-iOS users will be available?
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Just to clarify :-

i) will Trueplay work on all existing Sonos devices, presumably with a software update, or will it only work with the new Play5 and beyond?
ii) if it does work with older units, do we have any idea (or even a vague plan) of when a mic solution for non-iOS users will be available?


i) Trueplay will work with Play 1, Play 3, Play 5 and new Play 5
ii) no, there is no indication when this may be possible. For correct calibration, the sound profile of the mic must be known. Apple have a limited number of devices available across their range so this is relatively easy. Android devices can be made by hundreds of different manufacturers and quite possible different mics even within the same product range depending on age etc so the possibilities are endless. Could be a while !
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I'm just wondering how effective it will be. A comment in a previous post said "As far as Trueplay is concerned, it will absolutely make a more noticeable difference in some homes over other".

Somehow I'm not expecting a huge difference. And will it sound any better, or just different? We will find out tomorrow!