Sonos Beam and Play 3's as surround speakers


Hi,

I am planning to buy a Sonos Beam. I have two Play:3's, can I use these as surround speakers with the Sonos Beam.

I have read you can do this with Sonos 1's, but have heard no mention of using Play:3's

Can someone confirm I can use my Play:3's

Thanks

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10 replies

Absolutely yes.
Thanks John, good to know.
Just got my Beam and my Play 3's as surround speakers sound great.
Userlevel 7
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I'd be tempted to move the 3s to another room and add some Play 1s as surrounds as they do a decent job but what you have is fine if you don't want sound elsewhere.
Just got a Sonos Beam to go with my pair of Play 3s in my living room. Got them set up as a surround sound pair. Does not sound as good. The play 3s on their own sound much better than when paired with the beam. I have to unpair them each time I want to play music and then re-pair them when I want to watch TV. I’m going to return the Beam to John Lewis, I’m gutted but £399 was a lot to pay for something that stops my speakers working how I want them to.
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That is something you will face with any speaker system, when used as 5.1 surround speakers they do not get sent a lot of sound. I don't have a Sonos surround system but I have seen folks mentioning a mode setting to "full" as mentioned here:

https://support.sonos.com/s/article/2927#surround_settings

Music Playback: Choose Ambient (default; subtle, ambient sound) or Full (enables louder, full range sound). This setting applies only to music playback, not TV audio.
Just got a Sonos Beam to go with my pair of Play 3s in my living room. Got them set up as a surround sound pair. Does not sound as good. The play 3s on their own sound much better than when paired with the beam. I have to unpair them each time I want to play music and then re-pair them when I want to watch TV. I’m going to return the Beam to John Lewis, I’m gutted but £399 was a lot to pay for something that stops my speakers working how I want them to.
Yes, Stanley_4 is right, by default the surrounds are set to 'Ambient' for music playback. Goto the Room Settings for the Beam in the Sonos App, select Advanced Audio/Surround Settings and switch 'Music Playback' from 'Ambient' to 'Full'. I reckon you will be pleased with the outcome.

Let us know what you think?

I still think Sonos ought to change the default setting to 'Full', as that is (possibly) what many users appear to prefer, for their music output.

In this case, the user has even threatened to return their product and that is a good enough reason to change the default setting to 'Full', I think.
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Maybe changing the default to full would also reduce the number of folks thinking they need Play 5s as surround speakers to get a decent amount of sound at the back of the room.

Think of the poor support folks, which would you rather deal with?

C: My rear speakers have too much sound! S: No problem switch this setting to Ambient.
or
C: My rear speakers aren't doing hardly anything, they suck and I want my money back! S: So sorry you are unhappy, please don't send them back. Instead go change the setting to Full and give them a second chance. (Remember this is to a customer that has likely been building up stress listening to Sonos' pretty awful hold music for a while.)
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To me, it's an important enough decision to be included in the initial setup of surround speakers. The setup already asks the distance of the speakers to the sitting area, why not also ask whether you want the speakers to play stereo or ambient as well?
Interesting point, Danny. The key thing I'd recommend, if they were to do that, would be to be absolutely clear about the difference between streamed music versus TV input. I get the feeling sometimes that people assume that YouTube music from a TV is music, and consequently don't understand the difference between the two types of input.