Next generation Playbar 2018?

  • 4 November 2017
  • 54 replies
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When will we get a new Playbar?! Perhaps in 2018?!

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54 replies

Userlevel 7
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The only forthcoming Sonos hardware currently in the FCC database is an updated Connect, due in March. It would be nice to get an HDMI-aware Playbar though.
The author of that post also said this in response to a question about needing to return a newly purchased Playbar:

No don’t do that!

OK, now I feel bad and I think I should come clean. I just thought I would do some trolling but I don’t want some crap I made up to affect someone else’s purchasing decisions especially with an expensive product like this.

I never worked for Sonos.

In another thread, I mentioned how I wanted a Playbar to come out with HDMI and was pissed off the Playbase didn’t have one after all these years. I then received a private message from some random account telling me that there is a new soundbar coming out in May with HDMI. The account was a year old and never made any posts or comments. It could be true or it could be someone trolling me. Who knows! They told me a bunch of random shit.

I have been reading up on home theatre since I’m researching to replace my Playbar with an AV receiver and have researched a bit about HDMI 2.1. I decided to troll you guys here by fabricating a story from these articles:

https://www.electronichouse.com/home-theater/is-the-home-theater-receiver-dead/
https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2013/feb/18/sonos-soundbar-home-theatre-system
https://www.soundandvision.com/content/taking-hdmi-next-level

So I built a narrative around these three articles I had read - the first two being Sonos interviews I found while trying to verify the random poster’s private message. I then deleted my comments to give my story some legitimacy.

So in conclusion, please don’t go returning your gear based on some story I wrote. Enjoy your Playbar!

P.s. I can’t believe a publication would go publish a story based on some unverified comments on a forum!

P.p.s. I can’t believe that some comments I made on a subreddit, were used to write an article and then that story was then shared on the same subreddit as news...

Link to reddit:
https://www.reddit.com/r/sonos/comments/7vyf5q/rumor_new_playbar_with_hdmi_might_be_released/?st=JDJF6KVV&sh=a9d97705
Userlevel 3
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I hope these rumors are true. It makes complete sense for Sonos to do this. As the guy states in the cached thread, the Playbar has been a smashing success for Sonos. With some tweaking they could make even more headway into the home theater market.

I'll use myself as an example: I used to have a 5.1 wired setup. Now I have the Sonos 5.1 setup and I love it. It was easy to set up, it is easy to operate, and it produces great sound. However, it does need updating. I want Atmos, DTS, and 7.1 support. I'm willing to give Sonos another year but if they don't release something new than I will get rid of my Sonos 5.1 setup and either get something such as the upcoming Sennheiser soundbar or go back to a wired setup.

Ideally, I would love for Sonos to come out with a new Playbar (or mini-playbar) that supports Atmos, DTS, 7.1, and the ability to add another subwoofer to the room. Ideally this set up would allow for discrete left and right front channels. They do that and I will gladly buy the new Playbar, two additional Play 5s as front channels, and another sub as well as any speakers required to incorporate Atmos. My friends who have the Sonos 5.1 setup would do so as well. Sonos as an opportunity here to really make significant headway into the home theater market.
Userlevel 4
Badge +2
Any official news from Sonos on this before i go spend £1500 on a rivels system? Thats a lot of cash to lose for the sake of not confirming a possible 2018 release.

Sonos is not a home theater company and based on comments from the CEO they will not be releasing any products that cater to that demand. Spend your money elsewhere if HT is important to you. Otherwise you will be disappointed.
Userlevel 7
Badge +21
We're always watching the FCC database... however, looking at how the Sonos One played out, it didn't appear in the FCC database until Sonos announced it at the end of August... which was a little over a month before it became available. And the short-term confidentiality of the Sonos One's internal photos and other details is still in effect until late February. So if something new appears, we'll likely already know about it.

Will it happen? Eventually, I'm sure. This year? Who knows. My question is what Sonos will decide to support in terms of audio formats, if they do it. HDMI removes the restriction of bandwidth needed for the newer audio codecs... so there should be no reason to limit themselves like they did with the Playbar and Playbase.
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Sonos needs to support the newer audio formats and Atmos. They do that and I'll gladly buy the new playbar (and it appears many other people will do so as well). They don't do that and I'm going to go with a traditional wired system. I love my 5.1 system but I want Atmos at home.
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My dream scenario for the next Playbar (if there will be such a thing) is HDMI-driven supporting all the audio formats and Atmos with the ability to go up to 7.1 and the ability to add play 3s or play 5s as discrete front left and right channels. And then the ability to add four play 1s as Atmos height channels. Man that would be awesome.
I've been contemplating for a few weeks to buy a Sonos soundbar to go with new LG oled but have been put off. The sound quality is fantastic which we all know however the overall design and spec looks dated. Please Sonos your competitors are moving forward and are gaining ground and in some quarters have gone past you incorporating Up to date features with comparable sound quality and are overall far better value for money.
I want to part with my hard earned cash but won't commit because it looks like a future proof,stylish well equipped soundbar/play bar isn't on the horizon or is it? I want to be proven wrong.
The overall product range is good but the bar is like an ageing car trying to keep up with new models . Come on step up you would have an enhanced market share if you showed you were imaginative and progressive instead of simply reinventing the wheel as you've done by producing a flat old car in the form of a sound base .You certainly have lost my custom Which I'm gutted about because I had my heart set on owning the play are but it simply doesn't tick the boxes or cut it like it did 4 years ago tech has moved on.
We might finally get a new one. Including HDMI 2.1. .

The guy who posted the topic on reddit soon deleted it after it was posted possibly because he actually wasnt allowed to post it?

If you click on his profile you'll find posts where he do everything in his power to make the post "less likely" and told people it was false. I think he fucked up revealing sensitive information. (since Sonos is too private about their releases and upcoming stuff)

Rumoured source:

https://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?q=cache:PMYMBHFS8QoJ:https://www.reddit.com/r/sonos/comments/7vm79v/leak_the_next_sonos_sound_bar_will_have_hdmi/+&cd=1&hl=en&ct=clnk&gl=dk

https://www.flatpanelshd.com/news.php?subaction=showfull&id=1517993468

Discuss.


I know Sonos is a private company when it comes to releasing information. I don’t know if any of this is true but it has made me stop and wait. I was ready to order a HomePod and a Apple TV today. I will now patiently wait and see if this happens. I hope so. It would solve my only complaint with Sonos.
Userlevel 1
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Sonos needs to support the newer audio formats and Atmos. They do that and I'll gladly buy the new playbar (and it appears many other people will do so as well). They don't do that and I'm going to go with a traditional wired system. I love my 5.1 system but I want Atmos at home.

Agreed. Sonos should look interested on the marked today.
Or else the costumers are long gone.
I trully think sonos has underestimated the marked for soundbars. Well they may have made soundbar acceptable i home setups overall. But since then they havent done much to take cuts on the marked.
Many users today just want a simple setup and are willing to take convenience before audio quality. That been Said, i love my Sonos today. A soundbar with atmos compared to my old traditional 5.2.4 atmos setup? Soundbar any day. Its so much easier, takes a lot less space and my kids and wife can use it AND i think the Sonos sound quality is on par with the prices.
But the current setup may properly have atmos etc, If so it would be hard compressed due the bandwith with toslink.


Sonos is not a home theater company and based on comments from the CEO they will not be releasing any products that cater to that demand. Spend your money elsewhere if HT is important to you. Otherwise you will be disappointed.


This^^^

Sonos makes surround sound soundbars that can be easily connected to an optical out from a TV and are a great sounding replacement for the tiny speakers on a flat display, while also being wireless and part of the Sonos multi-room system. That is their selling point. What they are not is a substitute for a true Home Theater system, given the deficiencies in speaker configuration and codecs supported.
Userlevel 5
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So they should do full stereo (multichannel stereo) option


If you mean stereo at full volume out of the Playbar/Playbase and the surrounds, it does for music. Set the surrounds to Full in the Settings for the room, and you will get the equivalent of 5 channel stereo for music sources.


What has been asked by many people, already for a long time, is to have the the same 'Full' option for TV audio as exists for music.
Yes, its not going to fit all TV viewing but would be good for music sourced via the TV (music/concert DVD/bluray, music TV channels, youtube etc) and also sporting events.


So the exact opposite of what anyone into home Theater would want.

Got it.


My opinion:

- 80% of people owning an home theater configuration do not listen to 5.1; because of many things: broadcasters not broadcast 5.1, Sonos does not decode 5.1 (just dd), most of the sources are not 5.1, use TV for music listening... And why buy so good and expensivespeakers to let them off most of the time? And developing full stereo is by far more simple than implementing codecs or fake 5.1.

- 50% people live in little flat appartments, not in theaters; they have noises around and not complete silence, they want immersive sound to forget about the noise around. And they cannot turn up the volume too much when they are on the sofa because of the neighbors especially in the evening/night I need to have surround sound as well near my ears.

Do you find it reasonable?
Hope so.

Camillo
Userlevel 7
Badge +17
Every one of my TV stations broadcast in 5.1, HDTV in the US requires it, and I don't watch non-HD channels. For the very few that broadcast in 2.0 because the source material is 2.0, there are other modes like Pro-Logic (Sonos says it's mode is Pro-Logic-like) for those who complain (like below) that not all speakers are not in use (not me).

For music, I listen to stereo sources in stereo, I care not a whit about what speakers are in use or not in use, I want the source as recorded.

Agree to disagree.


here in UK hardly any music channels on TV are in 5.1. Sonos' 'pro-logic like' efforts are woefully bad such that the rear speakers are mostly silent (in TV mode) without a 5.1 source - hence the reason you see so many topics by those with a Playbar and 'Play x' rear speakers saying they dont work !
I sure hope so. I’m waiting patiently. Hopefully its all black to match the new Sonos One.
Userlevel 2
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I would like a new connect, but only if it is either cheaper (like a chromecast audio, doesn't need to be the same price range) since it does the same job a chromecast audio does OR incorporate something more to justify the ridiculous price target...
Userlevel 7
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Think about this....

OK...Everyone wants Dolby Atmos. However, designing a Dolby Atmos capable Playbar is only part of the picture. Even if such a Playbar handled the Left/Center/Right channels with at least two built-in upward firing speakers at either end; Sonos would still have to design surrounds with an upward firing speaker in each as well. The current Sonos sub would probably work.

So now next the question becomes does Sonos still support; but scuttles the existing line of speakers in favor of the new Dolby Atmos capable speakers (which will undoubtedly have a higher price point) or do they maintain two distinct line-ups?

Bottom-line....Integrating Dolby Atmos is more complex than adding Alexa to a Play 1 and calling it the Sonos One. :8
Userlevel 3
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Think about this....

OK...Everyone wants Dolby Atmos. However, designing a Dolby Atmos capable Playbar is only part of the picture. Even if such a Playbar handled the Left/Center/Right channels with at least two built-in upward firing speakers at either end; Sonos would still have to design surrounds with an upward firing speaker in each as well. The current Sonos sub would probably work.

So now next the question becomes does Sonos still support; but scuttles the existing line of speakers in favor of the new Dolby Atmos capable speakers (which will undoubtedly have a higher price point) or do they maintain two distinct line-ups?

Bottom-line....Integrating Dolby Atmos is more complex than adding Alexa to a Play 1 and calling it the Sonos One. :8


There would be a multitude of ways to incorporate Atmos.

They could incorporate upward firing speakers into a new Playbar. Or they could come out with a new speaker that solely provides Atmos (see the new Damson Atmos speaker set). Or they could come out with multiple upward firing speakers where you would buy a pair or two pairs and place them around the room. Or perhaps supporting Atmos and requiring that two or four play 1s be mounted near the wall/ceiling junction. Lots of ways of potentially doing it.
I have spent hours researching soundbars and come back to Sonos each time for flexiability and integration but the issue remains design and spec. I have the same LG and when you place the Playbar in front of the set if table mounted it blocks the sensor and you loose about an inch at the bottom of the screen. Even though it has an IR repeater for your remote it still creates issues. I was in John Lewis at the weekend taking a closer look and my view hasn’t changed it’s a brick with very few options compared to the competition and is very poor value for money given the competition. Now they have integrated Alexa into the Ones both myself and the sales rep I spoke to believe it’s only a matter of time before the rest of the range follows and they increase the specs of their products across the range......fingers crossed like you I’m waiting if not I will go with another manufacturer.
Userlevel 1
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We might finally get a new one. Including HDMI 2.1. .

The guy who posted the topic on reddit soon deleted it after it was posted possibly because he actually wasnt allowed to post it?

If you click on his profile you'll find posts where he do everything in his power to make the post "less likely" and told people it was false. I think he fucked up revealing sensitive information. (since Sonos is too private about their releases and upcoming stuff)

Rumoured source:

https://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?q=cache:PMYMBHFS8QoJ:https://www.reddit.com/r/sonos/comments/7vm79v/leak_the_next_sonos_sound_bar_will_have_hdmi/+&cd=1&hl=en&ct=clnk&gl=dk

https://www.flatpanelshd.com/news.php?subaction=showfull&id=1517993468

Discuss.
Copied from my post in the other thread:

I found this quote in the cached version of the post to confirm what I've been thinking for a long time:

(talking about receivers)... not only must they have licences for a bunch of audio codecs (Dolby Atmos, DD, DTS X, DTS-HD etc), they also need to distribute video, supporting Dolby Vision, 4K, HDR10. The licences for these are quite expensive and it seems there’s more and more each year that they need to support, particularly for video. They then need to support Bluetooth, AirPlay, DLNA, multiroom...and all at the same price point from the year before.

I see that as an obstacle for Sonos as well. And will continue to do so. Paying for these licenses for each codec (and I believe some of them are per speaker used, not just for the device interpreting the data) will be a challenge.

And the implementation with eARC (in HDMI 2.1) will present a confusion for the consumer buying the product. We'll see a bunch of increased "it doesn't work the way it was advertised" posts from people who don't understand the system. I have to wonder how many TVs will be able to be firmware updated to this. Probably not many. Something to be thinking about when replacing my current sets.

I predict the need for a "Can my TV be updated to HDMI 2.1" thread :)

Assuming this guy is right. But it's also an eloquent post explaining the backstory about the optical connection.
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The author of that post also said this in response to a question about needing to return a newly purchased Playbar:

No don’t do that!

OK, now I feel bad and I think I should come clean. I just thought I would do some trolling but I don’t want some crap I made up to affect someone else’s purchasing decisions especially with an expensive product like this.

I never worked for Sonos.

In another thread, I mentioned how I wanted a Playbar to come out with HDMI and was pissed off the Playbase didn’t have one after all these years. I then received a private message from some random account telling me that there is a new soundbar coming out in May with HDMI. The account was a year old and never made any posts or comments. It could be true or it could be someone trolling me. Who knows! They told me a bunch of random shit.

I have been reading up on home theatre since I’m researching to replace my Playbar with an AV receiver and have researched a bit about HDMI 2.1. I decided to troll you guys here by fabricating a story from these articles:

https://www.electronichouse.com/home-theater/is-the-home-theater-receiver-dead/
https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2013/feb/18/sonos-soundbar-home-theatre-system
https://www.soundandvision.com/content/taking-hdmi-next-level

So I built a narrative around these three articles I had read - the first two being Sonos interviews I found while trying to verify the random poster’s private message. I then deleted my comments to give my story some legitimacy.

So in conclusion, please don’t go returning your gear based on some story I wrote. Enjoy your Playbar!

P.s. I can’t believe a publication would go publish a story based on some unverified comments on a forum!

P.p.s. I can’t believe that some comments I made on a subreddit, were used to write an article and then that story was then shared on the same subreddit as news...

Link to reddit:
https://www.reddit.com/r/sonos/comments/7vyf5q/rumor_new_playbar_with_hdmi_might_be_released/?st=JDJF6KVV&sh=a9d97705

First he makes a huge article about it and everything around it to then do everything in his power to make the news fake... I believe what he said wasn't his to say and therefore he is trying to fix it. I think it's real and hope it is. Ready to buy a 5.1 setup but waiting for the Hdmi (atmos /dts) for future eligible.
I hope these rumors are true. It makes complete sense for Sonos to do this. As the guy states in the cached thread, the Playbar has been a smashing success for Sonos. With some tweaking they could make even more headway into the home theater market.

I'll use myself as an example: I used to have a 5.1 wired setup. Now I have the Sonos 5.1 setup and I love it. It was easy to set up, it is easy to operate, and it produces great sound. However, it does need updating. I want Atmos, DTS, and 7.1 support. I'm willing to give Sonos another year but if they don't release something new than I will get rid of my Sonos 5.1 setup and either get something such as the upcoming Sennheiser soundbar or go back to a wired setup.

Ideally, I would love for Sonos to come out with a new Playbar (or mini-playbar) that supports Atmos, DTS, 7.1, and the ability to add another subwoofer to the room. Ideally this set up would allow for discrete left and right front channels. They do that and I will gladly buy the new Playbar, two additional Play 5s as front channels, and another sub as well as any speakers required to incorporate Atmos. My friends who have the Sonos 5.1 setup would do so as well. Sonos as an opportunity here to really make significant headway into the home theater market.


Same here.

I would immediately by the mini, two play 5 (if I could do left,right discrete ) and two subs
Any official news from Sonos on this before i go spend £1500 on a rivels system? Thats a lot of cash to lose for the sake of not confirming a possible 2018 release.

You will get no official news confirming or not confirming this.
Userlevel 7
Badge +17


So they should do full stereo (multichannel stereo) option


If you mean stereo at full volume out of the Playbar/Playbase and the surrounds, it does for music. Set the surrounds to Full in the Settings for the room, and you will get the equivalent of 5 channel stereo for music sources.


What has been asked by many people, already for a long time, is to have the the same 'Full' option for TV audio as exists for music.
Yes, its not going to fit all TV viewing but would be good for music sourced via the TV (music/concert DVD/bluray, music TV channels, youtube etc) and also sporting events.
Userlevel 4
Badge +2


So they should do full stereo (multichannel stereo) option


If you mean stereo at full volume out of the Playbar/Playbase and the surrounds, it does for music. Set the surrounds to Full in the Settings for the room, and you will get the equivalent of 5 channel stereo for music sources.


What has been asked by many people, already for a long time, is to have the the same 'Full' option for TV audio as exists for music.
Yes, its not going to fit all TV viewing but would be good for music sourced via the TV (music/concert DVD/bluray, music TV channels, youtube etc) and also sporting events.


So the exact opposite of what anyone into home Theater would want.

Got it.