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New Sonos 3?

  • 11 April 2016
  • 27 replies
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Hi Folks,
Is there any announcements or indications on whether/when there'll be a new 3?
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Best answer by MikeV 11 April 2016, 14:42

Sonos waited 6 years between the first release of the Play:5 in 2009 and the second generation model released late last year. By extension, if Sonos were to use the same timeframe on the Play:3, you're looking at Summer 2017 before a new Play:3 appears. And that assumes that Sonos sees fit to update it on the same timeframe.

The Play:5 was lacking one big network development that the Play:3 already has - 5 GHz wireless support. Of course, the Play:5 has other advancements - the microphone (which looks to be part of some future voice control feature) could prompt Sonos to keep the same timetable (obviously that's something that still needs significant development)... gesture controls instead of buttons probably isn't as big of a deal.. But as I've already expressed, I wouldn't expect a new Play:3 until at least next year. But only Sonos will know for sure what's coming and when.
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Userlevel 7
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No

And there won't be
Userlevel 7
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the first you'll probably be aware of any new products is in the FCC application at:
https://fccid.io/SBV
Care to elaborate Stuart?
Userlevel 7
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Well to elaborate.

No there aren't/haven't been any announcements regarding the Play 3 recently.

Sonos don't pre-announce things let alone if they were going to obsolete a current product.

Just look at what they did with the Play 5 Version 2. Nobody outside Sonos saw that coming.
Userlevel 7
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Sonos waited 6 years between the first release of the Play:5 in 2009 and the second generation model released late last year. By extension, if Sonos were to use the same timeframe on the Play:3, you're looking at Summer 2017 before a new Play:3 appears. And that assumes that Sonos sees fit to update it on the same timeframe.

The Play:5 was lacking one big network development that the Play:3 already has - 5 GHz wireless support. Of course, the Play:5 has other advancements - the microphone (which looks to be part of some future voice control feature) could prompt Sonos to keep the same timetable (obviously that's something that still needs significant development)... gesture controls instead of buttons probably isn't as big of a deal.. But as I've already expressed, I wouldn't expect a new Play:3 until at least next year. But only Sonos will know for sure what's coming and when.
Thanks Mike - that helps me a lot, appreciate it

Cheers Stuart - It was more the "And there won't be" that i was curious about. I thought you may have known that there is absolutely no way of a new 3 coming out and Sonos are moving towards brand new products.
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I would guess it is on the way. I don't know what Sonos sales volumes are by product but my guess is that the Play 1 has cannibalized much of the market for a Play 3 and with the gen2 Play 5 the 3 is a weak link now.
Good point Bartender, i was in a store the other day and the three of them (the new 5, the 3 and the 1) were placed along side each other
The 3 is looking (aesthetically) a bit dated, hence why i asked the question in the first place
I think the 3 is an "obvious" candidate for a revamp. I have said on other threads that £ for £ (or $ for $) it has been left behind a bit by the 1 and 5. That doesn't mean it will necessarily come soon. I think most people's needs and budgets for a room can be satisfied by a Play:1, a pair of Play:1s, a Play:5 or a pair of Play:5s.

Hmmm... I may almost have talked myself into believing the 3 is actually redundant. What do others think?

As @Stuart_W has said - you won't get any prior warning from Sonos. They keep their development cards very close to their chest.
I think the 3 is an "obvious" candidate for a revamp. I have said on other threads that £ for £ (or $ for $) it has been left behind a bit by the 1 and 5. That doesn't mean it will necessarily come soon. I think most people's needs and budgets for a room can be satisfied by a Play:1, a pair of Play:1s, a Play:5 or a pair of Play:5s.

Hmmm... I may almost have talked myself into believing the 3 is actually redundant. What do others think?


I think you're absolutely right, I've said on a number of occasions now that I think the play:3 is a waste of money now, particularly as a pair of play:1s is so good.
Userlevel 5
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Hmmm... I may almost have talked myself into believing the 3 is actually redundant. What do others think?

The Play:1 is very good. I would buy two Play:1s instead of a Play:3.
Yes, I too agree with John B and The LHC here. The Play-5 (gen2) and/or two Play-1's seem to over-shadow the Play-3 in today's market.

I no longer possess a Play-3 speaker and quite often you can find some good deals on a Play-1 twin-speaker 'starter' set, which can be quite good value. Considering their compact size, they really can fill a room in most homes with great sound and bass. They easily outstrip competive speakers of similar size and work well.

A local sound engineer, near to where I live, says they are also a very reliable speaker in his opinion and he 'rarely' hears of any Sonos speaker that has developed a fault, certainly there is nothing 'commonly' known to go wrong with these speakers, even in the long term. So they are a good investment for the home.

Ken Griffiths
If there ever will be a new version, all I hope for is a line-in jack... 🙂
Sonos' versatility in dependable, synchronous wireless transmission requiring just a power-point in proximity to speaker location is great. However, anyone who has experienced truly great speakers such as B&W will hear the shortcomings in Play 3 immediately. I augmented 2x Play 3 in stereo with Sub for a kitchen but that hollow 'cheap speaker' sound that defines Play 3 is disappointing and lets down the excellent Sub. As I am using Flexsion brackets to wall-hang the speakers, Play 5 is not really an option. I hope that the next-gen Play 3 takes the audio quality up several notches.
I augmented 2x Play 3 in stereo with Sub for a kitchen but that hollow 'cheap speaker' sound that defines Play 3 is disappointing and lets down the excellent Sub.
Given the excellent results I get from a 1 pair + Sub, this is surprising to me. Although I have no experience of the 3, by all accounts it is at least as good as the 1. The problem with it is that it is a halfway house between the 1 and the new 5, and that leaves little justification for it, leaving another question mark over when a new 3 will be released. Sonos, as usual, won't say.
I augmented 2x Play 3 in stereo with Sub for a kitchen but that hollow 'cheap speaker' sound that defines Play 3 is disappointing and lets down the excellent Sub.
Given the excellent results I get from a 1 pair + Sub, this is surprising to me. Although I have no experience of the 3, by all accounts it is at least as good as the 1. The problem with it is that it is a halfway house between the 1 and the new 5, and that leaves little justification for it, leaving another question mark over when a new 3 will be released. Sonos, as usual, won't say.


Hi Kumar, I think there is good justification for 3 for those seeking good volume in a reasonably tidy package. The 1, for me, is a bedroom /bathroom /conservatory speaker, but not strong enough for parties and high-volume listening. 5 is too bulky for wall-mounting. If it were smaller, I'd have it over 3. As for 5... I have an older Bose Sounddock 10 and the audio quality far outstrips the original Sonos 5 -I haven't heard the new one. But then, Sonos is more versatile than a sounddock 10 in terms of connectivity. As I said in my original comment, this is clearly Sonos' killer feature. They've nailed that bit but the actual sound quality compared to high-end Bose Sub/Sat or other high-end speakers & amps is sadly lacking.

I even paired mine with Tidal HiFi and it did improve but once you've been spoiled with great speakers it's easy to hear the shortcomings in Sonos. Go to a proper HiFi store and experience great HiFi... you'll know what I mean then.

Actually, while on this point, I find that the sound from Connect is quite 'bright' with excessive treble. I have linked it with Marantz /KEF & Yamaha /B&W combos and the results were the same. The alternative source was an Arcam CD72 -same music. Far more 'musical' compared with Connect.
This is all very subjective, of course, but the idea of associating the words "high end" and "Bose" is something I struggle to get my head around. Not heard a Bose speaker I liked or rated. I wasn't a huge fan of the old Play:5, either, though - but the gen2 is brilliant.
high-end Bose
Is that not an oxymoron?

http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=Bose
haha! Ok, I realise they're not so popular with purists but I like the tiny speakers and the strong bass. I haven't listened to a Lifestyle 50 in a long time but when I did, I liked it. And, as a single-speaker setup, the Sounddock 10 is great. Anyway, I too have gone down the Sonos route so don't shoot! 😉

That said, I'll say it as it is, Play 3 is not an amazing speaker by any means.
Userlevel 7
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I have a stereo pair of Play 3s and I love them. I dare say if I ever listen to a Play 5 Gen 2 I'll change my mind so that's why I'm avoiding that risk!!
I'm rather inclined to agree that the P:3 has been eclipsed by the P:1 and certainly the P:5 Gen2. The acoustic engineering in the later models is clearly more sophisticated.
Go to a proper HiFi store and experience great HiFi... you'll know what I mean then.

Actually, while on this point, I find that the sound from Connect is quite 'bright' with excessive treble. I have linked it with Marantz /KEF & Yamaha /B&W combos and the results were the same. The alternative source was an Arcam CD72 -same music. Far more 'musical' compared with Connect.

With respect to HiFi Stores, been there, done that. For about 15 years before seeing the light about audiophilia and its ill defined words like "musical" when used in the context of hifi kit.
And the Connect leaves no sonic signature that anyone has picked up in a well constructed double blind test. What you are hearing is bias driven. Or source quality driven. Though I think it is obsolete if used along with passive KEF or B&W kit. Active speakers incorporate the latest tech now, that allows for better heard sound quality, and the 1/5 in their own way, are fine examples of it.
Userlevel 5
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I'm rather inclined to agree that the P:3 has been eclipsed by the P:1 and certainly the P:5 Gen2. The acoustic engineering in the later models is clearly more sophisticated.

I also agree. I have carefully listed to the 1s and 3s and for the price/size/sound I prefer the 1s. If Sonos would add a line in to the 1s they would be nearly perfect.
Personally I find it a little strange that the play 5 design , e.g. all black is now very different to the play 3. The play 3 looks outdated and I would not hesitate to purchase a couple of play 3's if they looked like the play 5, I am going to purchase 2 play 5's instead purely for this reason , I am into design so that leads me to this decision.
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Just re-visting this topic. Has anyone heard anything about a Sonos Three (with Alexa built in) as we now have with the Sonos One?

What do people think is a realistic timeframe for Alexa updates to existing speakers?

Thanks