March 6, 2020
Sonos is one of the companies at the forefront of the smart home industry. For nearly 20 years, their easily integrated products have solidified their spot as a staple of home automation. Here’s some quick insight into the powerful smart music system powering more and more San Francisco Bay Area homes.
Traditional full-home sound systems involving a mess of wires connecting speakers and control panels have plagued homes for years. Sonos is the new and exciting alternative. While the Sonos infrastructure is not entirely wireless, control of the system is. The Sonos system is controlled via an iPhone or Android app, allowing you to play music stored on your phone, or from your favorite streaming service, throughout your home.
Sonos is a very intelligent system. All of the speaker zones can communicate with each other. For instance, you’re watching the game in the living room, but you want to hear the commentary while you're in the bathroom. Sonos allows you to group these two zones, sharing the audio between them. You can also take a more modular approach by playing rock music in the living room, jazz in the bedroom, or conversely, the same song in every room. This innovation has allowed Sonos to revolutionize the home sound system, and the platform has grown exponentially. Let’s dive into some basics about how the Sonos system works.
The Sonos App communicates with the Sonos units wirelessly, making your WiFi network one of the most important keys to a healthy Sonos system. While it may be difficult to get a good signal in cities such as Hillsborough, it is very important to have a strong wireless signal for proper playback with your Sonos system. The Sonos players, speakers, and amplifiers all have a small wireless chip in them, allowing for full functionality without the network wiring that would be required in a traditional setup.
The excitement behind Sonos as a brand comes from the versatility of the platform. If you already have speakers in your home, the Sonos Amp can power existing in-ceiling/in-wall speakers, integrating them into the system for control via the Sonos app. Already have an amp to power your speakers? The Sonos Port can integrate your speakers/amp into the Sonos environment for complete control. If you’re limited from having in-ceiling or in-wall speakers, then the Sonos Play5 is a sleek portable speaker, boasting just as much power as a car sound system for a fraction of the price.
When it comes to the app, the program acts as a conduit for your favorite music services to reach your speakers. Spotify, Pandora, Apple Music, Soundcloud, Sirius Radio, Youtube, and virtually every other streaming service are supported by Sonos. You can even play music stored locally on your phone instead of music streamed through one of the aforementioned services. Basically, if it plays on your phone, Sonos will be able to play it throughout your home.
The technology powering Sonos is just as deep as its functionality. Beyond the aforementioned options, Sonos offers home theater/TV products such as the Playbar or Beam. Both of these can pair with the Sonos Sub woofer for the complete cinematic auditory experience. Sonos can also support a surround sound setup, using the Playbar or Beam acting as the front left, center, and front right speakers, while two Play:5 units act as the rear left and rear right speakers. The Sonos Play series is unique in the fact that they offer voice control through Alexa. These various models differ in size, with enough flexibility to fit any situation. The Play:1 is the smallest option, being able to be placed on a table top or counter, while the Play:5 is a much larger option, usually needing to be placed on a stand for the best results. It’s perfectly acceptable to mix and match your Sonos system based on your needs. This is yet another way it is one of the most versatile music systems around.
There are a few important questions that you’ll need to answer before completing your desired Sonos speaker setup. How many Sonos speakers do you need? Do you want a full 5.1, 7.2.1, or 9.2.1 home theater audio system? That question is one of many that requires a lot of consideration. There are many variables, such as where you’d like the speaker to be placed to fit the decor of the space. Sonos needs to be placed in range of a WiFi network as we’ve mentioned, so with a strong WiFi network, you can have any range of Sonos speakers in any area of your home. The ability to play music from any app from any place is a sensation that you’ll soon enjoy. As we’ve said before — the possibilities are limitless.
Doing a lot of research is recommended when choosing your new Sonos system, as excitement can easily cause a few more purchases than your home may need. The best and most exciting part of Sonos is the fact that you can always add new speakers and accessories to your system without having to redesign everything else. There’s nothing stopping you from simply adding another speaker, for example a Play:1 in your kitchen for your cooking needs. The setup is not a complicated process, but it is quite simple to mess something up as with most audio/visual installations, or even damage your equipment if you miss even the smallest part in the instructions. Make sure you have a great audio video installation team to help integrate everything seamlessly, especially if you’re connecting a Sonos system to an existing speaker system.