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fives or era300 with my arc

  • 4 November 2023
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I have an arc bar. I would like to buy two speakers. I'm hesitating between fives and era300s. I use 50% music in stereo and 50% in home cinema.What do you recommend ?

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24 replies

Userlevel 7

Hi

If you are considering adding the speakers as rear surrounds with the Arc to achieve full immersion with Dolby Atmos movie content (and stream select music tracks encoded for Atmos) then you must purchase the Era 300’s. The Sonos Five’s do not support Dolby Atmos.

The Era 300’s can also be set to deliver full stereo when used as surrounds when playing stereo music with the Arc. The listener will be placed in the center of the music experience. The Era 300’s will auto switch back to surround mode for movie content.

If you are looking to add speakers as a standalone stereo pair and are not concerned with Dolby Atmos for music then the Fives are the best choice IMO. However, the Era 300’s as a pair will play both stereo and Dolby Atmos encoded music. The stereo sound with the Era 300’s (IMO) offers a near Sonos Five listening experience with slightly less low end.

Note: Neither the Era 300’s nor the Five’s when used as surrounds can be used as an independent stereo pair.

Userlevel 7
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I don’t have either but how would the 300s and a Sub-mini compare to the Fives?

Userlevel 7

I don’t have either but how would the 300s and a Sub-mini compare to the Fives?

That setup (IMO) would be spot on to the Fives. I have the Era 300’s bonded to a full size sub. The reason it’s a full size sub is because I removed it from a room with dual subs that really didn’t need both. Otherwise I would have chosen a sub mini. 

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Merci AjTrek1 pour ta réponse claire 

Je vais donc acheter pour compléter mon arc deux era 300 plus polyvalentes que les fives 

Je pense aussi compléter par un sub pour avoir avec les era autant de basse que les fives .A votre avis le mini sub sera t il suffisant ? Merci

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Thank you AjTrek1 for your clear responseSo I'm going to buy two era 300s to complete my bow, more versatile than the five.I'm also thinking of adding a sub to have as much bass with the Era as with the Fives. In your opinion, will the mini sub be sufficient? THANK YOU
Userlevel 7
Thank you AjTrek1 for your clear responseSo I'm going to buy two era 300s to complete my bow, more versatile than the five.I'm also thinking of adding a sub to have as much bass with the Era as with the Fives. In your opinion, will the mini sub be sufficient? THANK YOU

The sub mini will work as an excellent setup with the Era 30O’s in stereo pair. One more question…

Please clarify if you will be using the Era 300’s as a standard alone stereo pair or as rear surrounds with a Sonos soundbar? The application is different as I tried to communicate in my original response but may have been lost in translation 😉.

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With the mini sub, the arc and the 2 era300s, the ideal for me would be to be able to switch from a stereo configuration to a dolby home cinema configuration thanks to a modification to be made on the Sonos application
but if I understood correctly this is not possible, is it not?

There is no ‘easy’ way to do this, no. It can be done, but it’s both time consuming, and breaks any TruePlay settings you may have. Basically, you’re setting up your speakers as ‘new’ each time. 

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It’s a shame. So I configured it as a home theater with the eras at the back. I hope that the sound will also be correct for musical listening. In this case do you think that the sub is really necessary unlike stereo listening where it would have provided a plus

I’d set up the surrounds in the settings for the room as Full, rather than the default ambient. 
 

Any Sonos speaker system gets better with the addition of a Sub, either the mini or standard version. 

It’s a shame. So I configured it as a home theater with the eras at the back. I hope that the sound will also be correct for musical listening. In this case do you think that the sub is really necessary unlike stereo listening where it would have provided a plus

 

Personally I think a Sub has much more impact on Home Theater than music.  It doesn't have its own channel (the '.1' in 5.1) for nothing.

Userlevel 7

With the mini sub, the arc and the 2 era300s, the ideal for me would be to be able to switch from a stereo configuration to a dolby home cinema configuration thanks to a modification to be made on the Sonos application
but if I understood correctly this is not possible, is it not?

Thanks for the clarification. Using the Arc, sub mini and Era 300’s is a good choice. If you re-read my initial response the sound parameters are explained. The sub will enhance the listening experience for movies and music. The sub relieves the Arc of having to process low-end content for movies and music allowing it to process everything else un-incumbered.

Fyi, if cost is not an issue the full size sub will make an even greater impact especially for movies.

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Fortunately, it is not a question of means, but more of choice. In fact, I'm afraid that the big sub will give too much bass compared to the mini.I had a problem with my old Bose Acoustimass 15 home cinema system where the bass was often too present
Userlevel 7
Fortunately, it is not a question of means, but more of choice. In fact, I'm afraid that the big sub will give too much bass compared to the mini.I had a problem with my old Bose Acoustimass 15 home cinema system where the bass was often too present

I believe you’ll find that Sonos compared to Bose is more balanced. I’ve never been a fan of Bose for the very reason you mentioned. You could buy both and test each using the same source and material to listen for yourself and keep the one you find more appealing. Granted there would be a bit of work involved to setup each for testing but the end result may be worth the effort to achieve the best combination of Sonos gear for your environment. Of course it depends upon the return policy. Sonos is 45 days in the USA.

Note: At the risk of ruffling some community feathers 😅The “.1” is always present when adding a sub. There is stereo 2.0 which consists of two speakers and there is stereo 2.1 which consists of two speakers and a sub. I’ve always used a sub (when possible) to handle the low end in any speaker array be it 2.0, 3.0, 5.0 or 7.0. The latter three (IMO) would demand a sub for optimal sound reproduction.

Userlevel 7
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The full Sub is easily controllable, you will not end up with too much sound. I have on in a huge, open L shaped room that it fills nicely, and a second in a 10x11 foot office where it blends in perfectly.

The office one because of spousal dislike of things Organ and Bachman Turner got me banished from the big room.

Userlevel 7

@Stanley_4 

Hi 👋 five for BTO!!!

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Thank you for your feedback. I decided to order 2 era 300 to go with my arc bar. For the sub, I wait a little because many tests conclude that the era in surroud give a lot of bass. And then if necessary I could always add the sub later
Userlevel 6
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Thank you for your feedback. I decided to order 2 era 300 to go with my arc bar. For the sub, I wait a little because many tests conclude that the era in surroud give a lot of bass. And then if necessary I could always add the sub later

I have the Arc, sub, and two Ones. I replaced the Ones with Era 300’s. Wasn’t long before I replaced the 300’s back to the Ones. I wasn’t impressed at all with them on other forums, I’m seeing a few that have done the same as in retuning the 300’s. I also listen to music 50% and movies the other half. 

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I'm not sure I understood correctly, you put era300s instead of ones and that wasn't satisfactory. Is that right?

Userlevel 6
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I'm not sure I understood correctly, you put era300s instead of ones and that wasn't satisfactory. Is that right?

I had Ones with Arc and Sub. Decided to get the 300’s in place if my Ones. Returned the 300’s and set the Ones back up. . I prefer the Ones. 

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Ok but why do you prefer the ones ?

Userlevel 6
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Ok but why do you prefer the ones ?

Better for music. Also, I don’t find there’s enough Atmos movies now to justify $900. 

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That's right, hopefully the number of films will grow in the near future.After concerning stereo music, I think I would invest in 2 fivesso I will have 2 separate systems: 1 for movies 1 for music because a priori versatility would seem difficult.
Userlevel 7

Hi @Choupix 

You’ll find a lot of different opinions on use of and preferred speakers in this community. Personally, I'm happy with my switch to the Era 300’s as surrounds. I also have a pair setup with a sub for music in a room.

However, in my main media room I have a pair of Five’s with sub for music and a home theater with Arc, subs x 2 and Era 300’s for surrounds. So, yes I have two separate systems...one for movies and the other for music.

I might add that in the main media room I also have a turntable connected to a Sonos Amp with sub and wired speakers. So...basically three (3) systems in the same room.