Meet Sonos Beam



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You've invested in an LG OLED, personally I would invest in a better sound system than the Sonos Beam. Maybe an Atmos bar or Yamaha YSP-2700, both cheaper than Beam and Sub, and will sound better.

I personally have a 2017 LG Oled and deliberately bought a Sonos Playbar for it to replace my Yamaha YSP-2500. Sonos wireless components perfectly complement the minimalist look of the TV in my eyes.

I much prefer the Sonos Playbar due to it being true 5.1 surround sound with the rears and excellent sub over the Yamaha YSP-2500 and 2700 etc. They only sound great if you have a perfectly shaped square room with no big windows on the sides. Not to mention the Sonos blows the Yamaha's out of the water when it comes to music playback.

I do agree for a TV 55 inch and above I would avoid a Sonos Beam as it would probably just be a bit small.
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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 😞
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.

Logically, no it wouldn't it would just have happened sooner, and at the expense of leaking details about the product launch.

That would be a really dumb thing for them to do.

Especially as Sonos are not responsible for people's overactive imaginations or belief in internet rumours. If you feel slighted andare angry and want to blame someone, go and look in the mirror and get angry with the person looking back at you, because it's 100% that person's fault.

Maybe this will teach people a few lessons about getting their hopes up based on rumours and speculation, but I doubt it.

Cheers,

Keith
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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 :(

https://www.sonos.com/en-gb/shop/beam.html

Optical Audio
Optical Audio Adapter to connect to your TV. Allows Sonos Beam to support DOLBY DIGITAL and stereo.

But there are some glaring omissions. Omitting hdmi connectivity is just crazy if the aim is simplicity. It is the main connection mechanism on almost all equiplent. How do you connect an AppleTv 4k to a sonos device without adding extra complexity and devices?


The BEAM has HDMI connectivity.

The original Sonos concept was niche and cutting edge 10 years ago.


Actually it wasn't. It wasn't the first home streamer on the block by a long way. Nor was it the only multi-room streaming system. I know this because I was research other systems as early as 2001, and was even considering developing and marketing my own.

What made Sonos different was that it was the best executed.

A huge part of this was focus: they focussed on a core product set designed for a specific market and didn't get distracted by trying to be everything to everyone, or by trying to create dozens of different product variations or incorporate features that weren't important to the core product and the experience they were trying to offer.

For instance, I remember as early as 2007 some people were saying that Sonos would fail because they didn't have an iPod dock on every player. Similarly people have said the same about Bluetooth. I could probably go back through forum archives and find a dozen or more now-forgotten features which people once said were "must haves" with warnings of dire consequences to Sonos's sales if they weren't implemented.

Sonos also attempted to be "open" and agnostic in as much as they didn't try to create their own ecosystem and force users into it.

The problem is people get hung up with technology, feature, and labels/brands, when those things do not equate to or even strongly correlate with success. If your product/sale strategy hinges on your supporting a very specific capability, then you've probably got it completely wrong.

Today, they are still the overall best and leader IMHO, but that edge is being eroded daily.


Daily? Really? Sorry, but I don't see it.

Yes, other products are coming onto the market, but it's a big and growing market. I remember some conversations with a Sonos employee several years ago at the time when Linksys/Cisco launched their streaming system (one of many in the market that were branded as "Sonos killers" but eventually disappeared leaving their owners stranded). At that time, many people in Sonos were hoping their competitor was successful as competition is good for expanding markets. Being second or third in a market of $2-3 Billion can be better than being number one in a market of $200 million.

And I don't see too many real signs of Sonos losing much traction in the market, especially as pretty much every article or review of competitors streaming systems mentions Sonos and almost all paint Sonos in a positive light.

The multi room market and connected speaker market is exploding and the technology to enable it going mainstram. Eventually a player or standards based ecosystem will emerge...


I'm not sure that will happen. The great thing about standards is that there are so many to choose from. Unless someone with the clout of the EU decides to intervene and regulate (and the EU only tends to do that where there's a clear consumer interest) then I can't see there ever being One Standard To Rule Them All.

But even if it does, it's not the technology that makes the product great.

...which will mean Sonos’ key capability - scalablikity and relative simplicity will evaporate as a market edge.


Will it? Why?

As I've said before, it's not just technology that makes products good and people buy them. Yes Sonos has some specific technology that works well, but it's not unique. People have had similar technology and have tried and failed to make "Sonos killers" for over a decade and have failed, because it's not about the technology, it's about execution, and Sonos has shown they have the ability to surprise people (including me) with their execution and ability to pivot into new products at the right time in the market.

People think Apple invented the iPod, the Smartphone, modern video conferencing (Facetime) and other things. The reality is Apple have hardly invented anything, ever. They are, instead, very good at taking existing technology and combining/packaging it into a products and branding that appeals to people. Sonos is doing a similar thing.

This will happen quicker if there are major imediments to being able to connect the equipment to mainstram standards.


Agreed, but there aren't any such impediments. There really aren't.

The vast majority of people with a modern TV can connect their Sonos equipment to their TV and it will work. They are the people who define the market. A handful of people with unusual setups which don't work well with Sonos are not the market.

And when new standards come out, or existing standards prove their worth and gain market support (as HDMI-ARC has now done) then Sonos will release new products or software updates to cater for those. That's what they've always done, and they're pretty damn good at it.

Cheers,

Keith

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
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.

The chances are you don't need a second HDMI port.

Cheers,

Keith
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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.

The chances are you don't need a second HDMI port.

Cheers,

Keith


This is the only thing you have said I don't agree with. I think many people will be very surprised at only 1 HDMI Port. Especially considering many TV's only have between 2-4 HDMI Ports with many smaller bedroom type TV's which the Beam seems aimed at, being in the lower end.

Sonos ease of use disappears when you get home and plug your Beam in via HDMI to your bedroom TV and then notice you can no longer plug in one of your existing devices as the Beam lacks a HDMI input to pass video through.

You of course can use Optical, but then you get rid of one of the biggest selling points of the beam which is using one remote over HDMI CEC.

It just seems like a huge misstep and very disappointing on an otherwise pretty flawless product when you look at the price tag and sound quality vs something like a Homepod.
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. The way BEAM connects is, increasingly the way the market is going, and is certainly the way it is being pushed by TV vendors and the AV industry in general.

Cheers,

Keith
Hi,

I'm really looking forward to this product. I have a question in terms of User Experience that current Playbar/base owners may be able to answer; once I have the Beam, if I start to stream something on my TV (YouTube/Netflix/etc), and I group with my other Sonos speakers, will I be able to walk to any of the speakers of the group and press pause to pause all of it (video+sound)? Or will I need to ask a voice assistant to do it?

It's a small feature of Sonos that I really like, and I'd love it if it could carry over to the video format.
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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.
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Newbie question here. I do not own any Sonos products. I have been waiting for a Sonos soundbar that supports voice control. I'm considering a Beam 5.1 setup.

I want to use the Beam to replace current 2.1 soundbar that has a lot of HDMI ports. I'm hesitating because I read the Beam only has 1 HDMI port.

Current Setup:
TV:
2016 LG OLED 65E6P TV
- 4 HDMI ports. HDMI port #2 is labeled "(ARC)"
- 1 port labeled Optical Digital Audio out
Peripherals:
2016 DirecTV 4K setup
2017 Apple TV 4K
2016 Samsung 4K BluRay Player

Is the following correct?

If I connect:
1) the Sonos Beam to my LG OLED's HDMI #2 port labeled (ARC)
2) DirecTV to HDMI #1 port
3) AppleTV to HDMI #3 port
4) Samsung 4k BluRay to HDMI #4 port

then those 3 TV peripherals's sound will use the Sonos Beam for sound because of
- the HDMI cable going between Sonos Beam LG OLED HDMI (ARC) port #2
and
- the 3 other HDMI connections between LG OLED HDMI remaining 3 ports and perpherals above

??


Do Not Get the Beam... Get the Playbar. Get an Open Box from BestBuy for 500 bucks. Especially if this is your main TV. Also a HDMI switch may be of use for you. I have 5 devices into a 5-1 switch. The sonos system works great for me this way.

Sonos even works with my logitec remote which is pretty cool.
Userlevel 3
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Newbie question here. I do not own any Sonos products. I have been waiting for a Sonos soundbar that supports voice control. I'm considering a Beam 5.1 setup.

I want to use the Beam to replace current 2.1 soundbar that has a lot of HDMI ports. I'm hesitating because I read the Beam only has 1 HDMI port.

Current Setup:
TV:
2016 LG OLED 65E6P TV
- 4 HDMI ports. HDMI port #2 is labeled "(ARC)"
- 1 port labeled Optical Digital Audio out
Peripherals:
2016 DirecTV 4K setup
2017 Apple TV 4K
2016 Samsung 4K BluRay Player

Is the following correct?

If I connect:
1) the Sonos Beam to my LG OLED's HDMI #2 port labeled (ARC)
2) DirecTV to HDMI #1 port
3) AppleTV to HDMI #3 port
4) Samsung 4k BluRay to HDMI #4 port

then those 3 TV peripherals's sound will use the Sonos Beam for sound because of
- the HDMI cable going between Sonos Beam LG OLED HDMI (ARC) port #2
and
- the 3 other HDMI connections between LG OLED HDMI remaining 3 ports and perpherals above

??


Do Not Get the Beam... Get the Playbar. Get an Open Box from BestBuy for 500 bucks. Especially if this is your main TV.


Agree 100%. The Playbar over optical works beautifully with my 2017 LG Oled. Make the Playbar a 5.1 system with a Sub and 2x Sonos Ones as rears for Alexa and future Airplay 2 compatibility, then add a Harmony remote and you'll have an extremely capable entertainment hub and one of the easiest to use and best overall systems available.
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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Am I the only one who couldn’t care less about DTS or Atmos? My old DVD player gathers dust, never did make the move to Blueray, because, let’s face it, streaming is SO much simpler. Same with music, I don’t bother with CDs anymore (though I still enjoy spinning LPs, lol).

Maybe if I were a fan of the noisy action movies that I HATE in theaters (only see during the annoying trailers) because they are simply far too loud, and have no substance. As a fan of great dialog, which is delivered just fine in stereo or Dolby, I just don’t care. I suspect there are many others who agree. Certainly don’t need 9.1 channels for streaming The Marvelous Mrs Maisel, or watching Masterpiece Theatre or Doc Martin OTA.


For appletv 4k Users Atmos is supported. So it is nolong just blue ray and DVD codec anymore. So Atmos is something that should have been considered for future home theater system.
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Does it make sense anymore to have playbar at 799€?
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Hi,

I'm really looking forward to this product. I have a question in terms of User Experience that current Playbar/base owners may be able to answer; once I have the Beam, if I start to stream something on my TV (YouTube/Netflix/etc), and I group with my other Sonos speakers, will I be able to walk to any of the speakers of the group and press pause to pause all of it (video+sound)? Or will I need to ask a voice assistant to do it?

It's a small feature of Sonos that I really like, and I'd love it if it could carry over to the video format.


You can use either the button controls on any grouped player or voice control.

For appletv 4k Users Atmos is supported. So it is nolong just blue ray and DVD codec anymore. So Atmos is something that should have been considered for future home theater system.


Atmos is great for high-end installations with multiple speakers correctly places in a treated room, but it is pretty pointless for a soundbar like BEAM.

If you can configure Apple TV to not output Atmos, which I believe you can, then you will be good to go.

Next...

Cheers,

Keith
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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.

Logically, no it wouldn't it would just have happened sooner, and at the expense of leaking details about the product launch.

That would be a really dumb thing for them to do.

Especially as Sonos are not responsible for people's overactive imaginations or belief in internet rumours. If you feel slighted andare angry and want to blame someone, go and look in the mirror and get angry with the person looking back at you, because it's 100% that person's fault.

Maybe this will teach people a few lessons about getting their hopes up based on rumours and speculation, but I doubt it.

Cheers,

Keith


You obviously missed the humour bit and the facts of my last paragraph or two.

Judging by some of your hostile posts, an attitude adjustment is probably something you should think about.
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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....;)
A quick question Ryan: A remote that is confirmed working with the Playbase and Playbare (Samsung One Remote), will that work with the Beam (if in an optical line-in?). As I'm not a part of the Amazon ecosystem I'm holding out for Google Assistant and want to be able to controll volume the old fashion way. Thanks!
Userlevel 5
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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!


Thanks 🙂 I must admit I didn't see that when I looked earlier. Shows I need to pay more attention!!
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The dimensions are listed as 25.625 x 3.94 x 2.70 in. Which of 3.94 and 2.7 in. is the height and depth? I have a small space between my mantel and TV, so I am hoping the height is the 2.7 in. Thanks. The height is 2.7 in as per my conversation with tech support.
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Welcome back Majik! Good to see your sound thinking back on a Sonos forum. Perhaps other sages such as RO53BEN and Buzz will pipe up too? Got a bit worried about ratty the other day but he's still here. And, of course, Kumar has been here throughout.
Userlevel 5
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A quick question Ryan: A remote that is confirmed working with the Playbase and Playbare (Samsung One Remote), will that work with the Beam (if in an optical line-in?). As I'm not a part of the Amazon ecosystem I'm holding out for Google Assistant and want to be able to controll volume the old fashion way. Thanks!

Surely it come with an IR remote too for those circumstances, if not then how would you control the voulme?! :?

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