Intro to Sonos for me

  • 8 December 2016
  • 18 replies

keep hearing about SONOS. i google them and looks like bluetooth speakers. What am i missing? i am thinking of buying my son a Christmas present and was hoping SONOS was something unique. Help!

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18 replies

Userlevel 7
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Sonos is the pre-eminent multi-room audio solution for the home (and used in many work environments too). This means that you can have speakers, either single or paired for true stereo, in each room of the house and play a different music source in each or you can group some or all of the rooms to play the same source with perfect synchronization.
Sonos uses your WiFi wireless network or uses it's own SonosNet wireless network (or both) - this is far more robust than Bluetooth.
Once linked to your network you can access thousands of internet radio stations from all over the world and many catch up programmes. You can also point your Sonos at your own local music depository. And if you are subscribed to a Music Service like Spotify or Amazon or Apple you can link that into Sonos.
So if your son has a house and he likes ease of use, top notch quality audio reproduction and access to more music than you can shake a stick at then he will love Sonos. (If he's a student who moves about unless he has a travel router he may find a Bluetooth speaker suits his needs for now).

He won't thank you mind, I'm warning you. It's addictive. I bought "just the one, for my kitchen 2 years ago and since then I have 1 in my bedroom, 2 in Dining room and the full surround set up in my living room.
I smile the smile of Kings every time I start an album as I'm just getting ready to do the crossword on a Sunday morning.
Userlevel 7
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Sonos is not Bluetooth and that is a big advantage.
Thanks Stuart, ok now... i think i am getting it. would love to see a demo but looks like we can dip our toes in and then expand as needed/desired. Much appreciate the response. Joe

I'm not that familiar with Portland area, but if there's a "Magnolia" inside a Best Buy near you, there's a great chance you could see a demo. But frankly, it pales in comparison to having one in the home. Neat as it is in a store, it's sitting in your own house and enjoying the whole Sonos experience that makes it outstanding.
Hmmm, their Dealer finder service on the Sonos website doesn't list any Best Buys, but Echo Audio, Encore Audio/Video and Fred's Sound of Music (are the hills actually alive?) would be likely places to see a demo. I doubt the Apple store would have one set up (they don't in Palo Alto, near me), and Target would be chancy at best.
Userlevel 7
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Target doesn't have optimal setup but normally has a play:1 play:3 and play:5 demo although you can't play with software much.
Interesting. Perhaps I don't spend enough time in Target :)

Thanks, Chris!
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I don't blame you
Userlevel 7
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Actually until you just mentioned I forgot that in actuality I purchased my first Sonos unit at target. At the time I was still using my squeezebox system. Wasting time one day in target when my wife was getting something I stumble on the Sonos display. That version of display you could play with the controller and play songs and I found it a lot like my squeezebox with a nicer interface and hopefully better reliability for wife acceptance factor (she could never get squeezebox to work reliably when I wasn't around). So I picked up a play:5 (old gen 1 that actually now resides in my sons room).

Needless to say the reliability was for real and my wife uses the system daily - a dozen or so Sonos units later.
Then an epic win for both Sonos, and this community :)

I got my first unit as a gift from a friend, who'd attended a concert where they were giving away a boost and a Play:1. It didn't take long for me to find out how awesome it was, and now I'm inundated with them. I think I have 20, and have achieved a sufficiency (although maybe one more for the garage wouldn't be remiss....)
Hey all of you, thank you so much .... i will get out there and see a demo this weekend. As to Sound of Music - rare snowstorm in Portland today so we are doing our best to look like Austria. Actually a great town ....
Check the demo for the features, but don't make final judgments on sound quality based on what you hear in the store. A properly set up stereo pair of even the play 1 units is capable of sounding as good as a decent HiFi set up in the home.

Bluetooth speakers are a better buy than Sonos if the requirement is for a portable, battery powered unit that can be used out of doors to play music contained in a smart phone or the like, even in places like a poolside or a beach; but for indoor use Sonos has the more suitable technology.

And if you are giving it as a gift, keep in mind what most of us have found: it is a gift that drives users to keep buying more of it. Also, Sonos needs a stable home WiFi as a foundation for it to work.
Userlevel 7
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Stable home wifi if you aren't using sonosnet. I still think running on home wifi is in most cases a mistake.
How can one have a working Sonosnet in an unstable Wifi environment? Running on Sonosnet allows for a dedicated to audio bandwidth, but both are susceptible to interference in the same way - AFAIK.
Userlevel 7
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In general true but Example I used to have a horrible wifi router from my internet service (Verizon) but a stable sonosnet.
Userlevel 6
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We have now had Sonos in our house for year. 10 speakers and counting.
Hey Joe... Go buy at least one speaker and take it home and try it out in the comfort of your own home. If it for some reason you don't care for it or it doesn't do what you expect, return it to the store and you're out nothing but your time. Double check the store's return policy first though.
Userlevel 2
Now that Sonos is in Apple stores, it's a no-brainer. Their return policy is excellent. You don't even need a reason.

It's a nice safety-net to have, which is why I purchased my first unit recently in an Apple store, but if you're anything like me, you won't go back to return anything, you'll go back to get a few more. Started with a Play:1 for the toe-dipping, and not two weeks later, I have another 3 Play:5s ... hide your credit cards from gadget addicts 😛