Is there something wrong with my Playbar?


I just bought a Playbar for my living room and a Play1 for my kitchen. I had no problem installing the units and I'm really impressed with the Play1 but my Playbar is a big disappointment.

When playing music on the Playbar the sound is thin, flat and really lacks warmth/depth. As a test I brought my Play1 into the living room and it outshines the Playbar even in the bigger room. I have tested it on many friends and they all say the same thing. The Playbar does a far worse job filling the room with sound. It's not just about the base, the Play1 just has a bigger sound.

Could this really be how it should be, or is there something wrong with my unit? I have done factory reset twice. Tried both with and without Trueplay. I have tested a set-up without connecting it to the TV (incase that for some reason would interfere).

I've read so many good reviews of the Playbar and I've been so impressed with the sound quality from other Sonos speakers (Play1's and Play5's), so I just don't want to believe that this is the sound that I should live with.

Any ideas?

9 replies

Hi I'm a new Playbar owner also, just took delivery this week - sorry t hear about your issue. To my ears it sounds amazing fed by the TV and maybe just a notch below with music. Such a stark difference seems not normal to me based on my 5 days with it. I would talk to Sonos support.
Userlevel 1
Badge +1
Sound quality is somewhat subjective and I'm not in the same room, but did you True tune the playbar?
Badge +4
As well as Trueplay (which you've tried on and off), you could try changing the EQ settings to your liking in the speakers room settings.

If it's still not satisfactory, a chat with SONOS support might be a good idea.
Userlevel 1
Badge +1
Sorry OP, I totally couldn't read this morning. I'd talk to support.
Thanks for your comments. I'll give the support a call in the coming days.

It could be that my expectation is off, but i tested it on quite a few friends and they all say that the Play1 delivers a better warmer, "richer" sound. I tried the EQ, but playing with the treble and the base settings does not solve the problem. It still sounds like a can.

One solution could be to add a couple of Play1's or even Play5's next to it to boost the experience. But it feels a bit sad to pay a lot of money for a Playbar that will only serve as the optical bridge to the TV.

I really hope that there is some kind of software issue that can be solved easily. I really love the concept of the Playbar.
I've got a similar problem. Love my Play3s and Gen II Play5, but the Playbar is very disappointing. I even purchased a SUB to try and make the Playbar sound better. It just sounds bad (mids are muddy. the highs are 'tinny').

Did you contact Sonos support? Were they able to help you?
Userlevel 3
Badge +3
Not sure if you have resolved this with Sonos Support, but I would add a comment.

I found my PlayBar to be... truthfully... ok for music... and great for TV, and I figured it was just what it was... ... ... ... until I added a SUB. The SUB totally transformed the experience and the PlayBar totally came to life once it was able to offload the bass response to the SUB. So, with regards to your comment about adding play 1's or 5's to the area... seriously consider a SUB that can bond with the PlayBar to give 3.1 (and obviously if you wish a pair of other matched players for full 5.1).

I get that it may seem like an expensive addition... but perhaps not when compared to a pair of 5s you mentioned potentially adding... Purchase from a retailer you are certain you can return it to if you wish - or I understand Sonos offers a 45 day return policy if you purchase directly from them... Just from my own experience... the SUB totally transformed the sound in the space I had a PlayBar simply by allowing the PlayBar to do what it does best... and the SUB.. well it is just unparalleled.... I could never have imagined the difference it could make without actually adding it. Not sure I would have believed anyone telling me to be truthful.
Steehl have you fixed it yet?
I set mine up with two Play1s as a 5.1 system and find it quite good at music and 5.1 cinema via optical from the tv and Wi-Fi from my smartphone. How are you playing music on it? are you using optical in or direct from your phone, and which service e.g. Spotify?

Maybe your source of music is the problem and how you connect it.


    • :D
    • :?
    • :cool:
    • :S
    • :(
    • :@
    • :$
    • :8
    • :)
    • :P
    • ;)