Sonos Playbar review: wireless audio invades your living room
7 January 2014
Summary: The simple home stereo is struggling in the digital world. Little black boxes and audio sources are proliferating under the TV, remotes litter the coffee table, and docks clutter the bedroom and kitchen. Countless inputs and apps, disparate interfaces, and way too many wires have mashed up into a home theater headache that’s barely keeping up with music after the CD. It’s not a pretty situation.
Pros: Ease of setup and use, Offers true wireless 5.1, Fantastic sound for movies and TV
Cons: No 3.5mm input, Apps feel clunky, Over-reliant on optical audio, Not ideal for music listening
Conclusion: The Sonos Playbar has a lot going for it, which makes it an easy recommendation. The combination of solid sonic performance and easy-to-use streaming capabilities makes it a winner for just about anyone. If you want to be able to stream music to your soundbar, the Playbar is a must-audition product. That said, if streaming is not a feature that you will ever use, there are many competitive options.
Conclusion: Soundbars are hotter than ever due to the thin flat panel TVs we drag home. And the market for soundbars is more exciting now than it has ever been as the makers of soundbars are coming from very different parts of the electronics industry - with very different features as a result. Sonos’ take on proper sound for your TV is exciting for several reasons.
Pros: Easy setup, IR-repeater, The Sonos-universe is included, Good sound quality for TV and movies, Wireless streaming, Possibility for “surround”, Price
Cons: Only SPDIF input, No DTS support, Sound is lacking a bit for music listening, Cannot connect additional front speakers
Excerpt: The box carrying the Sonos Playbar, like most sound bars for the living room, is pretty big. But unpack it, strip away the protective foam, and the speaker system is a nice size that fits under most 42- or 47-inch TVs common in Singapore homes. Similarly, strip away any unrealistic expectations you have of a sound bar and you’d quite enjoy the Playbar, as I did.
Excerpt: Since its launch in 2005, the Sonos wireless music system has won accolades and an extensive fan base thanks to an early focus on tapping into the digital music libraries that consumers built after the iPod’s launch in 2001, and an evolving graphic interface that, in today’s version, brings the benefits of room, source, and track selection to intuitive touchscreen apps that run on smartphones and tablets.
Sonos Playbar review: A sound bar for Sonos disciples
3 April 2013
Summary: The Sonos Playbar is cleverly designed and does great fake surround, but it's better suited to current Sonos customers than newcomers.
Cons: The Playbar's heavily processed sound won't please purists. It's also expensive and there are considerably better-sounding alternatives in its price range. Many buyers would be fine with cheaper AirPlay or Bluetooth alternatives.
Sonos Playbar review: an excellent (and expensive) home theater addition
25 March 2013
Summary: Sonos' Playbar is an expertly constructed, excellent-sounding soundbar, but at $700 it poses a significant challenge; it's hardly an impulse buy. Pair it with a Sub for a truly great home theater audio experience, and that tally rises to $1,300 or $1,400 (not counting another $50 for a Sonos Bridge). An extravagant sum when compared to, say, Vizio's forthcoming highly regarded soundbar and wireless sub system.
Pros: Simple set up, Great, room-filling sound for a soundbar, Top-notch build quality
Excerpt: The Sonos multi-room audio system had been limited to audio until now. You could play music from your NAS, computer, radio and online streaming services. The user-friendly nature and the good sound quality have made Sonos a popular brand, and with the introduction of the Playbar Sonos is now entering the home cinema market.