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Sonos has a brand new large-room speaker, and it’s a huge improvement over its predecessor in every way – even though it’s more expensive.
Sonos Play 5 Wireless Speaker System
Editor-in-Chief David Carnoy has been a senior member of the Reviews section since 2000. He covers a wide range of devices and is a well-known reviewer of accessories and portable audio equipment, including headphones and speakers. He is also an expert e-reader and e-publisher and author of Knife Music, The Big Exit and Lucidity. All titles are available as Kindle, iBooks, Nook e-books and audiobooks.
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Over the past few years, Sonos has continued to add wireless speakers to its large-room sound line, but its tabletop speaker, the Play:5 has not changed in six years. Until now, that is. This is the new Game:5 (2015), and it’s bigger, better, and sounds better. It’s $500, £429 or AU$749. This is about $100 more than the original model, but after listening to it, I’d say it’s worth the extra dough.
The second generation Sonos Play: 5 is a stylish Wi-Fi speaker, specially designed to deliver great sound for its size and powerful bass. It offers full Sonos functionality, controlled from iPhone, iPad and Android apps, with almost all major music services, including Pandora, Spotify, Tidal and Amazon (along with Apple Music’s latest from).
It comes in two colors — white and black — and can be placed horizontally or vertically in three different positions. I like the way it stands, and while the Play:5 works well as a single speaker with a wider sound and more brightness and bass than the previous model, if possible For these two people, you can create two stereos. and get a real divorce.
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In the past, Sonos has had issues with speakers that don’t provide a stereo image (published). However, in our tests of the new Sport: 5, which Sonos refers to as Sport: 5 (gen 2) whose menu is different from the old Sport: 5 (gen 1), the problem is fixed as it is. it produces a very focused image (dead center between the speakers).
This speaker appears to be about 20 to 25 percent larger than its predecessor: 5 and offers more bass – six drivers, including three mid-woofers and three tweeters – so if two of them are like that. There’s no need to add a Sonos Sub to get a good performance without the low end.
The speakers sound a little different depending on how you handle them. Sonos says that when you plug it in, they deliver “on-line and focused sound with a nice texture.” Combined horizontally, they create a “bigger sound image” for more room-filling sound. That said, we like the sound when we put it horizontally.
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As you’d expect, the new speaker works with Sonos’ “Smart” speakers, which are designed to connect seamlessly to a large room sound system and network. first wireless to a device. Wi-Fi router (Sonos speakers communicate with them). each other through their personal connections).
If your Wi-Fi connection is a bit spotty, you can choose to add a Sonos Bridge ($50) or Boost ($100), which connect both to your router to create a Secure wireless connection for your Sonos devices and more. simplify the setup. The speaker itself is equipped with six antennas – the most of any Sonos speaker to date – to help maintain wireless connectivity.
Update, Dec. 14, 2017 at 3pm ET: We adjusted the score from 8.4 to 8.0 after comparing it to the Google Home Max.
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Everything is set up and controlled through an iOS or Android app on your mobile device, which works like a remote. You can control all the rooms in your home through a single application and stream music using services such as Pandora, Spotify, Tidal, Google Play Music and Groove, or play your music collection stored on a computer or communication device.
With Play:5, the company has also created a new Trueplay adjustment system to help you get the best sound from Sonos speakers depending on their placement in a room. Sonos recognizes that customers are placing speakers in less-than-ideal locations — on the floor in a corner, for example — and Trueplay compensates for poor placement in flexible settings. it helps to increase the bass and increase the brightness.
You pair your speaker — or speakers — using an app with the microphone on your iPhone or iPad. I tried the negative placement of the Play:1 speaker and it definitely sounds better after adjusting. Initially, Trueplay was iOS only and supported Play:1, Play:3, and Play:5 speakers. (Original Play: 5 is discontinued but can be adjusted using Trueplay.)
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The speaker itself has new touch controls that let you play, pause, adjust volume and change tracks. And the best thing is to listen to the speaker to adjust the touch to everything that is happening, so the volume is turned up.
As I said in the introduction, the new Wasa: 5 (Gen 2) sounds better than the old Wasa: 5. The first thing you notice is the amount of bass it produces. It’s also louder, brighter, and doesn’t settle for high volume like the previous Play:5.
We put a variety of music into it and while it’s great for many uses, it stands out for its performance and bass-heavy stuff. I can hear bass and hip-hop and EDM (electronic dance music). It means it has a visceral effect and doesn’t make me think I need a sub.
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I had to listen to audio editor Ty Pendelbury and Steve Guttenberg, who writes the Audiophiliac blog. Steve wasn’t impressed with the speaker, especially for the price (he said it offers plenty of bass but is otherwise a little “boxy” and has a bit of sibilance in the treble) . But Ty and I liked it better because we’ve listened to a lot of these wireless computer speakers and didn’t have high expectations.
Yes, the price is a bit high for one speaker (or two) and you will probably get better sound for the money from a good set of speakers and cheap bookshelves associated with an increase in the budget. We also know that no single speaker can deliver monster volume and sound separation is excellent. But this type of speaker is different, which means that it is integrated into the whole house through a transfer system. And the truth is that it’s hard to find wireless speakers that match from room to room or even tune together in sound.
We compared the Play:5 to the inexpensive Polk Omni S6, which is also good for a Wi-Fi speaker (it has a Play-Fi speaker) and is cheaper than Sonos. It did very well with jazz and vocals, but it didn’t have much bass and the Sonos didn’t pack a punch in heavy tracks.
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Although the performance of the two speakers varies from song to song, I think the Sonos seems to be a good speaker. It’s also a definite winner in terms of design – a very attractive speaker.
We haven’t had a chance to compare this to the Bose SoundTouch 30 Series III, which is priced the same as the Play:5 and is probably its most direct competitor as a consumer audio choice. many Bose. But soon we will update our review.
While the new Play:5 is more expensive at $500 — and may be too small for budget users — it’s a huge improvement in terms of design and implementation. It might not sound great, but it’s the best Sonos sound yet.
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It’s a late party for Sonos wireless speakers, but after spending a week with the new Game: 5, I’m ready to pour my wallet straight into the Sonos bank to install my whole package with these – it’s there.
Reputation. Not only the Game: 5 is the best sound in one I’ve ever heard (yes, better than the famous Bowers & Wilkins Zeppelin), it’s one of the best sounds good i heard it. Sure, you can use built-in speakers and speakers under dedicated DACs like I’ve done in the past, but for something that’s really good and easy to use, the Play:5 doesn’t measure up. .
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In fact, there are few technologies that I have discovered – outside of Apple products – that is.