17

Sonos Beam Review

True Score

83
85
26

Experts

89
6,520

Consumers

Product Awards

GR Certified

Customer Favorite

Expert Rankings

The mid-range Sonos Beam’s ultra-wide soundstage, crystal-clear dialogues, remarkably low latency, and seamless accessibility through IR remote and app make it ideal for music-listening and dialogue-focused and casual movies. However, its constrained bass, subpar surround, and zero EQ presets could disappoint cinephiles seeking serious immersion.

$474.00

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Product Snapshot

Overview

The Sonos Beam is a mid-range 3.0 soundbar that hit the market in 2018, delivering deep bass for TVs. It has a remarkably compact design, standing out amongst the highest-rated speakers on the market today.

It punches above its weight with the room correction feature, optimizing the sound reproduction based on the room’s acoustic qualities. With built-in Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, and the companion mobile app, this system is easy to control remotely.

It also offers Wi-Fi and Apple AirPlay for streaming. It has an incredibly low latency over all ports, eliminating any lags between audio and video feeds during movie dialogue scenes. Connectivity options include HDMI ARC, optical, and Ethernet.

This system gets remarkably loud, achieving a top SPL of 94.1 dB. However, like most 3.0 soundbars, it downmixes surround sound to stereo, and it doesn’t support Dolby Atmos, so it has a poor 3D soundstage for movies.

It also lacks a dedicated subwoofer, so it doesn’t produce the deep, extended low bass that many movie and music lovers crave. Continue reading to see how the Sonos Beam compares with the finest soundbars on the market today.

Best For

  • PC

Consensus

our Verdict

The Sonos Beam soundbar lacks Bluetooth connectivity and Full HDMI In but features a dependable HDMI ARC port and an Optical Audio Adapter (useful for TVs with only optical output).

Audio is disturbance-free and tested latency is impressive (-14ms through ARC and 0ms through Optical).

Thanks to its side-firing speakers and center channel, the soundstage feels ultra-wide. Dialogues are clear because of the reasonably balanced sound, but it lacks satisfying thump, and the surround performance is hardly immersive for movies.

Although there’s no remote, you can seamlessly sync your TV’s IR remote with the soundbar, and despite the soundbar’s plasticky exterior, it feels durable.

Input commands are responsive, but customizable EQ presets are missing. Lastly, the Sonos 2 app offers streamlined control access to the soundbar through your smart device.

ReasonS to Buy

  • Great sound quality
    • The Sonos Beam is great for dialogue-oriented content, like TV shows, because of its reasonably neutral sound signature, while the slightly overemphasized treble enhances high-pitched vocals. Moreover, thanks to its side-firing speakers and center channel, the stereo soundstage feels ultra-wide.

  • Excellent voice clarity
    • Voice clarity is excellent thanks to the well-balanced mids. The dedicated center channel makes dialogues feel like they’re emerging from specific points, enhancing the immersion.

  • Outstanding smart features
    • The Sonos 2 app offers streamlined control access to the soundbar through your smart device. And it’s equipped with Alexa and Google Assistant for hands-free management.

  • Satisfactory connectivity options and low latency
    • It features a high-speed HDMI eARC with a latency of -14 ms, which is among the best tested. Although there’s no Optical port, it includes an Optical Audio Adapter that connects through eARC, making it perfect for older TVs with just an Optical output. The 0 ms latency through Optical is again one of our lowest tested.

Reason to Avoid

  • Subpar surround performance and missing Atmos
    • Surround performance isn’t immersive because this is a 3.0 setup that downmixes surround sound to stereo. Sounds feel like they’re coming from in front of you rather than all around you. Plus, if you’re into action movies, the absence of Atmos will make the experience less engaging.

  • No thumpy bass range
    • Without a subwoofer, the audio lacks a satisfying thump. Although you can adjust it with the bass adjustment feature, it will still lack deep rumbles.

  • No Full HDMI and EQ presets
    • The soundbar can’t be used as a central hub for connecting various devices without a Full HDMI In. Moreover, the lack of EQ presets makes adjusting the sound profile inconvenient.

Sonos Beam Specs

Bluetooth EnabledBluetooth EnabledNo
DepthDepth3.9"
Dialogue Enhancement FeatureDialogue Enhancement FeatureYes
Energy Star CertifiedEnergy Star CertifiedNo
Equalizer Settingsn/a
HDMI ARCHDMI ARCYes
HeightHeight2.7"
Number of Audio ChannelsNumber of Audio Channels3
SubwooferSubwooferNo
Voice AssistantVoice AssistantAmazon Alexa, Google Assistant
Wall MountableWall MountableYes
WeightWeight6.3 lbs
WidthWidth25.6"
Wireless ConnectivityWireless ConnectivityHDMI
Wireless Subwoofer ConnectivityWireless Subwoofer ConnectivityYes
Works WithWorks WithAmazon Alexa, Google Assistant

All Specs

Test Results

Low End Roll Off (Hz)54.17
High End Roll Off (Hz)9,948.487
Max Volume Test (db)91.2
Latency (ms)-14
THD @ 80dB0.73

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Product Comparison

Sonos Beam Review

True Score

83
83
78
77

Ranking

#

17

/

151

#

11

/

151

#

77

/

151

#

82

/

151

Market Context

The Sonos Beam is a mid-range 3.0 soundbar that hit the market in 2018, delivering deep bass for TVs. It has a remarkably compact design,…

The Sonos Beam is a mid-range 3.0 soundbar that hit the market in 2018, delivering deep bass for TVs. It has a remarkably compact design, standing out amongst the highest-rated speakers on the market today.

It punches above its weight with the room correction feature, optimizing the sound reproduction based on the room’s acoustic qualities. With built-in Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, and the companion mobile app, this system is easy to control remotely.

It also offers Wi-Fi and Apple AirPlay for streaming. It has an incredibly low latency over all ports, eliminating any lags between audio and video feeds during movie dialogue scenes. Connectivity options include HDMI ARC, optical, and Ethernet.

This system gets remarkably loud, achieving a top SPL of 94.1 dB. However, like most 3.0 soundbars, it downmixes surround sound to stereo, and it doesn’t support Dolby Atmos, so it has a poor 3D soundstage for movies.

It also lacks a dedicated subwoofer, so it doesn’t produce the deep, extended low bass that many movie and music lovers crave. Continue reading to see how the Sonos Beam compares with the finest soundbars on the market today.

With the 5.0 setup, the Sonos Beam Gen 2 provides a better surround soundstage than the Sonos Beam. It also supports Dolby Atmos, unlike the…

With the 5.0 setup, the Sonos Beam Gen 2 provides a better surround soundstage than the Sonos Beam. It also supports Dolby Atmos, unlike the Sonos Beam. That said, the Sonos Beam achieves a 94.1 dB maximum SPL, getting much louder than the Sonos Beam Gen 2, which only manages a maximum SPL of 89.4 dB. Check out our Sonos Beam Gen 2 review to learn more.

While the Bose Smart Soundbar 700 can connect wirelessly to devices via Bluetooth and Wi-Fi, the Sonos Beam doesn’t support Bluetooth connectivity. It also has…

While the Bose Smart Soundbar 700 can connect wirelessly to devices via Bluetooth and Wi-Fi, the Sonos Beam doesn’t support Bluetooth connectivity. It also has a higher 95.9 dB maximum SPL, getting louder than the 94.1 dB SPL of the Sonos Beam.

With built-in Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant, the Sonos Beam is smarter than the Sony HT-G700, which doesn’t have built-in voice assistants. It also has…

With built-in Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant, the Sonos Beam is smarter than the Sony HT-G700, which doesn’t have built-in voice assistants. It also has a wider stereo soundstage and a room correction feature, unlike the Sony HT-G700. However, the Sony HT-G700 offers a better surround soundstage and supports Dolby Atmos, unlike the Sonos Beam.

Bluetooth Enabled

No

Yes

Yes

Depth

3.9"

3.9"

13.38"

4.3"

Dialogue Enhancement Feature

Yes

Yes

Yes

Energy Star Certified

No

No

No

Equalizer Settings

n/a

n/a

HDMI ARC

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Height

2.7"

2.7"

7.13"

2.6"

Number of Audio Channels

3

3

Dig Deeper

Sonos Beam Gen 2 Review →

Bose Smart Soundbar 700 Review →

Sony HT-G700 Review →

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  • $474.00

    Availability

    In Stock

    Free Shipping

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  • $475.00

    Availability

    In Stock

    Free Shipping

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Score Card

E

Expert Score

85

*.75

We place a 75% weighted value on Expert Test Scores

C

Customer Score

89

*.25

We place a 25% weighted value on Customer Scores

True Score

83

Any product with a True Score above 80 is a Absolutely Fresh

Expert Scores

  • Rtings
    103

    Category Trust Rating

    76
    The Sonos Beam soundbar is very good for dialogue-heavy content like TV shows. With its… Read More

    By:

    Jean-Simon Bonneterre
  • PC Mag
    54.9

    Category Trust Rating

    80
    The Sonos Beam packs multi-room, multi-service audio streaming and Amazon’s Alexa voice assistant into a… Read More

    By:

    Will Greenwald
  • Tom’s Guide
    66.71

    Category Trust Rating

    80
    The Sonos Beam (Gen 2) soundbar delivers sophisticated sound in a small package. A bounty… Read More

    By:

    Kate Kozuch
  • CNET
    54.51

    Category Trust Rating

    80
    Although some cheaper options sound better, Sonos Beam is a feature-packed, voice-operated sound bar with… Read More

    By:

    Ty Pendlebury
  • Trusted Reviews
    60.27

    Category Trust Rating

    100
    This Beam is a soundbar does a bit of everything and does it well, excelling… Read More

    By:

    Ced Yuen
  • Techradar
    46.31

    Category Trust Rating

    90
    The Sonos Beam is small enough to attach itself to the majority of TVs, and… Read More

    By:

    Marc Chacksfield

Customer Scores

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