Meet Sonos Beam



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Just picked up the sonos Beam and thus far it is blowing me way. shame on a base levels (guessing the sub would be needed).
would be nice and it may already be there and i have not found it yet different EQ setting
Yes it’s there in the “room settings” and it sounds even more incredible with added surrounds too.
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This is so-not what i expected or wanted. Like getting the wrong kind of toy at xmas when i was a small kid.
Hi guys,

as many others of you i was hoping for dolby atmos and dts x (what a shame not to integrate it in 2018). Anyway the beams looks nice. But i have a few questions in mind:

- Is it possible that dts x or atmos will come with a later update? (can‘t imagine because of the speakers inside...)

- Do you think the beam will sound as good as or similar to the playbar? Okay its smaller, but with new technical components...

- If i use Beam in a 5.1 setup, i ask myseld which speakers are the best for the rears: Sonos One or Play 1? Alexa is already integrated in Beam, that makes me think, that Play 1 could reach. The sound between Play 1 and One is comparable, right?

I would have paid more money for that product, coming with more state of the art audio codecs.

What alternatives do you see for a small home theatre setup with a huge sound?
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I was just typing out a reply for your private message. I'll have the team look into the blue light card situation, I don't know too much on that front but you might want to give our sales team a call in the morning when they're in and see if they can help with what you're looking to do. They may have some more options over the phone, and if nothing else will be able to answer some of your questions.

Many thanks for everything and I will do. I’m excited about the product as others here are too. I understand some people want Atmos and already invested in Sonos but I wanted to use my existing amp and speakers and speakers so I bought a connect and connect amp. Don’t see why that’s not an option for the Atmos crew (though also understand they have spent lots on Sonos kit too!)
IF providing HDMI in a mini-playbar that can talk to 3 digital assistants in 2018 is their ground-breaking disruptor that's going to propel their revenue model - well FWIW, I think they are in big trouble.

Amen. Sonos was so promising just 2 years ago. I still think they can survive because no competitor's portfolio is sufficiently developed _yet_. But it looks like the lead is being squandered going by the recent announcements.
Everything the HomePod should have been. This from an Apple fanzine, lol.

https://www.macworld.com/article/3279804/hardware/the-sonos-beam-is-everything-the-homepod-should-have-been.html
I think that the Beam meets my immediate requirements as I am not a Home Theatre person, but surprised it doesn't have a second HDMI port.

Along with the Beam, I thought SONOS may have also launched a replacement for the Playbar with an updated design, microphones, AirPlay2, Alexa, etc. Maybe this will come next as the Playbar is still looking a bit old and the connectivity is limited.

As for Codec support, potentially it is a cost factor to include something that most may not ever need, but maybe this could be solved with an optional paid over-the-air upgrade for the Beam, Playbase and future Playbars.
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My main disappointment is that no one from Sonos got on these forums several weeks ago and knocked the DTS, Atmos, etc. rumours on the head. May have saved a lot of angst and dissatisfaction with what the actual announcement was.

Funny how when you hear a rumour you tell yourself not to get too carried away, to wait until the actual news is official, but you still can’t help but get excited and then when the day arrives and what was rumoured is missing, well you kinda just want to unleash!

The person earlier in this thread that said it’s like being a kid at Xmas and getting a toy but not the toy you were expecting/wanting, that sums it up perfectly :)

Anyway won’t stop me from continuing to love this company and buying their products. I was one of the first Sonos customers in Australia 13yrs ago and the gear I bought then (besides the 2 controllers, cutting edge at the time, clumsy and prehistoric by today’s standards) is still working perfectly now (2 Connect Amps, 2 Connects).

The products and software updates that have followed over the years have been brilliant. Long live the king!


Agreed. If it had be mentioned that the upcoming release was going to be a more 'entry level' soundbar than the current range it wouldn't have attracted so much annoyance etc. For me, the current playbar and playbase were both too expensive for what they offer and this new one might just be right for me. I'm not bothered about DTS or Atmos. I recently dismantled all my proper AV setup and just want something that would give me decent 5.1
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I was hoping for DTS support for 4K discs, but no.
Atmos is covered as sonos beam will still output DD5.1, as opposed to silence with DTS or DTS:X.

Hopefully as mentioned before sonos can work on adding 4 x play1s, a sub, and a paid for software upgrade to turn the beam into a centre only channel for true 5.1 that can handle codecs on 4K discs.

I don't know, but wonder if Sonos wants to leave the high end HT market to others.


I think that's entirely correct, as it has been with high-end audio. It's glaringly obvious to me that the high-end is a niche market they simply don't have any interest in being in. I think that's a smart product strategy.

Cheers,

Keith
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Most people don't have more than one or two devices in the bedroom that need plugging into a TV.

A bigger issue is that a lot of the older TVs with limited HDMI ports don't have HDMI-ARC support anyway, so it's kind of moot. Models with HDMI-ARC support tend to have more ports on the basis that HDMI-ARC is designed to be used in the way that BEAM uses it.

As soon as you add a second port, you start to move away from the HDMI-ARC model and into a switching-hub approach, which then starts adding to the complexity of the solution and makes the unit more of a HT Receiver/switcher than a sound bar.

That's clearly not where Sonos wants to be, and with good reason.

Yes, the BEAM isn't going to suit everyone, but it will suit most. And, increasingly as people get new TVs, it will support them more and more.

Cheers,

Keith


I've had a Philips Fidelio and a Yamaha YSP-2500 Soundbar and both had this feature. In fact, I'd fathom more soundbars have it than don't. I just installed a low end Sony Soundbar for my parents and it had more HDMI ports as well. With HDMI CEC you don't even realise when the soundbar is passing through a video signal or not, it switches inputs automatically on the TV and soundbar to suit as it did on my Yamaha. No user experience required at all.

It is a glaring omission and after I typed the above, I had a look online and there are reviews coming out praising the Beam, but pointing out that limitation as being a dealbreaker for some. I have an LG Oled which is one of the more high end TV's available and that only has 4 HDMI Ports. Once you plug in your cable box, Apple TV/Roku and gaming console you are down to one more port which the Beam demands. Better hope you don't want a dedicated Blu Ray player or a 2nd Gaming console etc.

I say this as someone that lovesI Sonos. My 5.1 Playbar setup is the best audio system overall I've ever bought, and all their speakers are amazing for their size. Overall they are still the multiroom audio solution to beat, but seriously if Sonos are going to do HDMI then I think they should do it properly. Stick to Optical and bring the price down a little bit if they are going to half bake it.
Just realised the my main television (Panasonic Plasma) doesn't support ARC and there is no optical-in on this speaker so it is of no use to me at all sadly :(

It comes with an optical to HDMI converter, so you are good to go!
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You can potentially create a wider soundstage with a pair, in that you can physically separate out a stereo pair. Beam's soundstage is by no means small. In terms of power, it's closer to a pair of Play:3s than Play:1s, considering it has four full-range woofers and a tweeter, all independently amplified and specifically tuned, along with three passive radiators for room filling bass. Definitely, this is one to test out for yourself to see what you think. I'm looking forward to hearing with the community thinks!


Ryan - I've just blown my CR100 fund on a pair. Are you saying there is a plan to enable them to be paired (L+R, not grouped)? I've pre-ordered to use my credit before it would otherwise expire, and picked the slowest delivery method, but I'd be happy to wait a few more days (after 17/7, 7/17 to you) to get some consumer feedback. I know there's the 100 day trial period, but I don't know how the credit voucher is treated if products are returned and the only other solution would be to gift them within the family if not completely satisfied. I've not yet been disappointed by the sound quality of a Sonos product, but given that my wife has said she'd divorce me if I got any more, it was a slightly nervous purchase.

Hey, maybe Ariana needs a tonne of Sonos in her life....;)
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When you set speakers as surrounds in full mode - when watching TV the rears acts as surrounds. When listening to music the rears act as full speakers. So yes when listening to spotify the rear speakers would be full volume stereo.

The negative in that is sometimes people want to listen to music on the TV or just want the rears to play stereo when watching TV. The design of the playbar/playbase doesn't allow TV sound to be set to full (always surrounds).

I don't know if the architecture with the hdmi input instead of toslink will allow Sonos to add a much requested (Stereo via digital input) feature allowing full stereo when watching TV.
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If I group Beam and the 2 play1 surround and maybe sub when watching TV, will I have like multichannel stereo WITHOUT any delay from the video?
I would buy for sure only if I can use multichannel surround.
I live in a flat and I have some noises but at the same time I cannot pump up the volume.

If you bond the speakers so that it's one zone with a soundbar, sub, and surrounds...there is no delay.
The word 'grouping' in Sonos world means playing two or more zones together. Not the same as bonding to a 5.1 setup. Semantics, but it can be confusinf if you start mixing terms.

If what you're looking to achieve is to get the surrounds to play the same stereo signal as the front channels for TV audio, grouping them together is the only way to go, however, they will likely be slightly out of sync for the TV audio only. The surround configuration using the 5.1 setup works off of 5GHz and has no noticeable latency, but grouping the TV signal could have a little delay. It may be noticeable.
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so the Beam will work the same as the Playbar/Playbase - no full mode from digital input (only from stream services / local files)
@pwwhitehead My post, was, by the way, not directed at you, but was an response the the previous post by shoturtle.

There's two ways to (correctly) look at the new Beam:

1. It's a smaller, cheaper version of the Play Bar that connects to your TV out via optical.

Now noone can say that's a product that noone wants. My understanding is they've sold quite a few of them. If you have an older TV without HDMI-ARC, that is what the product looks like.

2. For those with a modern TV with HDMI-ARC, it's an improved product which connects to your TV and other peripherals in the way that is likely to be commonplace and standard going forward.

Now, possibly due to a misunderstanding on your part, you look at the product as something else. If you have a newer TV with HDMI-ARC, you should have no requirement for HDMI passthrough on the Beam, as the TV should do this and present you the audio from all of your devices via HDMI-ARC. If you don't have HDMI-ARC on your TV, then optical output is the supported option.

Now I appreciate that, with your setup, Beam might not be the product for you, but that doesn't apply to everyone. Going forward more and more people will be going the HDMI-ARC route. It's now common on TVs and, unlike Atmos, is something that most people will want to use (once they understand it) as it makes their lives simpler, reduces cable clutter, etc.

Cheers,

Keith


Shirley the AVR (AV Receiver?) is using the HDMI-ARC port, so the Beam can't be connected to it.

Although I'm a bit mystified why you would want both an AVR and a Beam connected at the same time.

Cheers,

Keith


That was kind of my question. I thought he would be replacing the AVR, not using both on the same TV.

And don't call me Shirley. 😃
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if the optical adapter is used - how can the volume be controlled ? is there IR sensor / passthrough also like in the playbar ? otherwise you have to use the sonos app which is pretty unfriendly just to change TV volume !

That is a very good point. Personally, I have no idea.

There is an IR sensor on Beam, just like with the Playbar and Playbase. You can also use the Sonos app, or your voice. Volume controls are also on the device or on surrounds if you add them in.

I wanted to buy playbar since 2014 but kept on waiting for new one. I was ready to buy the new playbar but when it came out, it is for small rooms. My TV room is quite big it is basically open Living room with dining table in the back, will it be ok to have Beam with Sub and 2 one's? The room size probably is length 10 by width 5. Do you think it will give good sound? And Also will be better to have 2 one all the way in the back or in the middle before dining table?
That's a tough one to answer. The Beam has surprisingly big sound for the size, but based on what's in the room and how it's laid out, it may not cover the room. I'd say it's probably worth testing it out if you're interested. We have a pretty great money back guaranty when purchased through us directly.
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Sonos confirms that the beam was what I expected, a price point speaker design to give flat screen better sound. But not the speaker for movie buffs looking for the great sound experience of dolby.

https://www.pocket-lint.com/speakers/news/sonos/144777-sonos-and-dolby-atmos-possible-but-not-right-for-new-beam-speaker
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Instead of a playbar update, I would like a cheaper to make, smaller centre channel only speaker, with 4k passthrough, 4 hdmi, that could do all the lifting for 5.1 of higher codecs, then add 4x play1's and a sub.
Technically there's nothing stopping them from doing that in software anyways. They have a 5.1 signal coming in, they have an ecosystem built around you buying multiple speakers, they have regular software updates. There's no real reason why it couldn't be that. Whether or not they do though I think depends on how much people actually care about surround.

And HDMI passthrough? It's ultimately just a work around for the fact that ARC doesn't support some of the higher end codecs. And when push comes to shove those higher specs on the box is all for absolutely nothing when you have to drop back to HDMI ARC anyways. Eg when using one of the many apps on your smart TV.

I would be happy to have the 4K pass-thru and added HDMI ports, but I’m sure I could live with just the one HDMI 2.1 plus the usual ethernet port.
If it was HDMI 2.1 the passthrough would be unnecessary. Assuming your TV is also HDMI 2.1 and supports eARC. It'll be a good day for everyone when audio devices only need one cable running to them.
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TruePlay for HT already consists of two parts where the first part is for the sweetspot and the second is walking around
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Will this thing decode 5.1 from a dolby digital plus signal from a smart TV via ARC?
You bet! Beam does a handshake with the TV over HDMI-ARC and asks for Dolby Digital 5.1. If the TV has an Atmos or Dolby Digital Plus signal, it'll automatically send Dolby Digital 5.1 to Beam instead. The formats by specifications are compatible, assuming the devices are handling it properly.

From what I've read, stereo pairing is for homepod only.
This is correct, though there is some grouping functionality that'll work. More on that later when we're ready to share all the details around Airplay 2 and Sonos.
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I was getting excited when I heard abut support for hdmi, then this.. small price meant for a small room no atmos (netflix and others are using that) Still innovation is behind it's time It's like 6.2 pounds slightly more weight than a play 3 so how would it compare to a play 3 Play 3 one tweeter, two mid woofers Beam is four full range woofers and one tweeter. Play 5 3 tweeters and three mid woofers playbase 18 lbs, playbar 11.9, Play 5 14 lbs, Play 3 5.71 lbs weight may not be everything but it does state what you are getting when you compare that to speakers. so how will it stack up..Note I can use a dot echo for controls. No pre order for me - instead I'll wait for the store and see"
Currently use chrome cast to turn on my TV and everything plays through my playbar and sub. Amazon has a cube that turns on TV as well now.
May be it will be OK in a bedroom....
second new product in recent years and for me I am again met with disappointment. (playbase was the other)..Maybe I expect to much for 2018. I guess they really don't want my money.

If you want atmos you best look elsewhere - https://www.dolby.com/us/en/categories/sound-bar.html
It took them a long time to get to hdmi


It is disappointing, but the beam is a price point sound bar, aim at the biggest segment of the sound bar market. Something simply that will give you a good upgrade form most flat screen TV sound. I wish it had been a upgrade for the playbar. Just got a new tv, and while I love sonos for music. I just can not bring myself to invest in sonos for my home theater.
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Wow - this is a long thread!

I am waiting to see what people think of the Beam with Sub and Surrounds vs Bar with Sub and Surrounds. Other than that I think many people are missing the point.

If I wanted a state of the art surround system, I would buy one. If I wanted Sonos integration I would then buy a Connect and link it to the state of the art surround system. It seems completely counter intuitive to ask Sonos to support Atmos with their current product line up. In my mind you would need some kind of Connect Amp on steroids to feed lots of speakers around a room.

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