There are a lot of threads asking the question_”Beam vs Playbar/Playbase which should I get?” We all know that the Beam offers more features (i.e. HDMI_ARC, Alexa and AirPlay2). The biggy is sound; IMO primarily vocals/speech, as to how will it fairs in a room of X-Size. The obvious answer is given by Sonos:
I’m going to offer my opinion and feel free to agree or disagree because as I said it’s my opinion. Having both a Playbar and Beam I’ll say this...
Out of the Box they win hands down versus the Beam; as room size is a non-issue (to a point). More speakers (given Sonos engineers drive for perfection) equate to better music reproduction. Vocals and speech are handled well without augmentation.
Music wise it’s better than a Sonos One or Play 1 as stand-alone’s and I dare say the discontinued Play 3. I wonder if there's a replacement in the works for the Play 3. :? Using those same speakers in stereo pairs the Beam falls short. Vocals and speech IMO the Beam sounds better with a sub (augmentation) to handle the low-end in an open space like a Family Room/Kitchen combo. In a bedroom; or slightly larger space with 4 walls, the Beam will do just fine without the sub.
FYI, I have a Beam is an area that is 580 square feet with 18 to 20 ft., ceilings (Family Room/Kitchen combo). Before adding the sub vocals/speech were all over the place; even after using TruePlay. Once I added the sub vocals/speech became lazer focused to the seating area (after TruePlay). It goes without saying that music sounds better also. Just in case you're wondering I have a media room where I mainly watch TV and listen to music. It requires a password to enter:)
So there you have it…my opinion as a Sonos fan! I can’t wait to get my hands on the Sonos AMP. :8