Arc Vs. Beam + 2 ones - what is the better investment?

  • 29 July 2020
  • 2 replies


I will be making my first SONOS purchase for my future apartment (up to 1000 sq ft), but am also hoping to use this in my future full sized home within the next 5-7 years. I set my budget for $800 USD and my two options are: 1) Beam + 2 ones or 2) Arc.


I watch a lot of movies and TV, but also like to listen to music out loud every so often! I do not currently own a TV, but I will probably not be able to afford one that has HDMI-eARC capabilities. However, I plan to purchase one (at least 55 in) that has HDMI-Arc. 

I’ve read a lot, but am still confused and torn between both purchases. I think (from what I’ve been told) the beam + 2 ones will overall sound better, but I’m not entirely sure if this is correct. I want to try to “future proof” this purchase as much as I can in hopes that what I buy will be usable for around 10 years or so and I think the Arc might have the edge here with the future of Dolby Atmos.


All suggestions are welcome :) thanks!!

2 replies

Userlevel 7

Hi @Mghanadian 

Glad you are considering Sonos.  Judging from your post with a budget of $800 USD the Arc may not be the best choice. To reap the full benefits of the Arc a TV with eARC is required. However, there is a device soon to be released called the Acrana by HDFury that will go between a non-HDMI eARC TV with just HDMI ARC and the Sonos Arc to deliver the full spectrum of Dolby Atmos. That said the Arc may be the way to go.

Looking out 10 years the current Arc will be around but will most likely have been replaced by another Sonos speaker with better sonics. Sonos typically follows a seven year speaker replacement/upgrade development phase.  That’s not to say that the Arc will be obsolete for enjoyment. 

The Beam with two Sonos One SL’s is also a good choice. You have options not afforded by the Arc. You could potentially use the Beam along with the TV and place the Sonos One SL’s elsewhere in your apartment. Of course you can use Beam and Sonos One SL’s as a system with your TV.  The Sonos One SL’s can also be set to play at Full stereo for music in conjunction with the Beam and auto switch to surround mode for TV and Movies.  One caveat that may sway you to the Arc is that the Beam can sound light on TV dialogue without a Sonos Sub ($699). Then again you may not think so.

Yours is a difficult decision given your short and long range plans. Both speaker options have their pros and cons.

Sonos is not always the best solution. You might also consider a less expensive competitive option that may meet your needs for the short term. I wish you the best to build your system.


Userlevel 7
Badge +17

In some regions, Sonos offer what is, in effect, a home trial: money back if you’re not satisfied with your purchase. If this includes you, I’d consider consider buying both and returning one!