My family room is the most used room in my house. From family movie night and some Netflix binges to the occasional slumber party for the kids and watching the latest championships for my favorite sports – we spend hours each week sitting in front of the television. That being said – the sound my television puts out leaves a lot to be desired. It just cannot compare to that of a movie theater. That is – it couldn’t until now and Sonos has a lot to do with that.
Is Sonos good for use in a home theater system? Sonos has become one of the electronic industry’s leading innovators and manufacturers of sleek, modern speakers. A company that strives to remain at the top, Sonos has created a proprietary network of devices that come together to provide top of the line home theater sound.
Sonos products can be quite costly. Knowing which pieces to invest in, how they work together, and what (if any) additional equipment is needed can help ensure you spend only what you need to.
Sonos is a consumer electronics company. Founded in 2002, Sonos has quickly become one of the leading innovators for surround sound systems.
Competing with big name brands, like Bose, Sonos has made a big impact in a short period of time. Their high quality products, streaming surround sound capabilities, and smart speaker designs have become wildly popular choices amongst home theater novices and professionals alike.
Sonos offers new-age technology that sets it apart from many of the company’s top competitors. Their music service agnostics feature allows you to stream digital media from over 30 sources, including Spotify, Pandora, Apple Music and Tidal.
Additionally, Sonos smart speakers work in conjunction with digital assistants. In fact, as of January 2019, Sonos now offers several products that work with Amazon’s Alexa, Apple’s Siri and Google Assistant.
Sonos has also become the industry standard for whole-home audio. With only your smartphone, you can control sound in any room in your house. From having each Sonos speaker synced to the same song, or playing separate tracks throughout each room of your house, the company has exceeded consumer expectations in relatively little time.
But how does this translate to your home theater system? Sonos offers several products that integrate flawlessly with your home theater system, or even replace it entirely!
If a Sonos home theater sounds like something you might want, figuring out which components you need may seem overwhelming. Below, we talk about the pieces you need to build a custom Sonos home theater in your living room.
A home theater receiver interprets input signals and amplifies them as they send them out to your speakers. Because each Sonos component includes at least one built-in amplifier, having a receiver is actually redundant.
However, a receiver is a convenient way to connect multiple devices to your surround sound system. If this is a feature you would like to incorporate, the Sonos Connect may be for you. Sonos Connect allows you to integrate your wired receiver with your wireless Sonos speakers to give you premium sound no matter what your input signal.
The Sonos Connect includes multiply input and output features, including analog, optical and coaxial digital audio. It also allows you to control your receiver via voice command through Amazon’s Alexa. Measuring slightly over 5 inches high, 3 inches deep and almost 6 inches long, the Sonos Connect should be set on a flat surface and cannot be wall mounted.
A home theater system typically includes some type of front channel audio device, whether it's a surround sound speaker system or a soundbar. For Sonos, the three options are the Playbase, Playbar and Beam. Check out our very in-depth article on these 3 options. It covers a ton of information about each of these "soundbars".
Sonos soundbars are renowned for their high quality sound. In fact, even if you cannot afford a full Sonos surround sound set up right now, the Playbar or Beam make for a great interim solution!
Have you ever noticed that deeper tones tend to sound muddy when listening through your television’s speakers? By adding a subwoofer to your home theater, you can help those low-frequency tones clear.
The Sonos Sub, the only subwoofer currently available from the company, offers clear rich tones. Inside each “O”-shaped Sub, two force-cancelling woofers deliver highly-detailed and dynamic bass, no matter what position you place it in.
Designed to cancel out its own vibrations, Sonos Sub has virtually eliminated excess shaking that may take away from the sound quality.
Sonos speakers are some of the best on the market today. When it comes to your Sonos home theater, the Play:1 and Play:5 are the most popular models. (You may find Play:3 versions secondhand. The production of these, however, have been discontinued so you likely will no longer find them in stores.)
Setting up 5:1 surround sound with Sonos is extremely easy. If you have invested in a full Sonos home theater, each piece easily integrates through the Sonos App to give you total control almost as soon as you take them out of their boxes.
Start with connecting a Sonos speaker to the Wi-Fi network used by your phone through the free Sonos App, which is available in both Google Play and Apple App Store. To make connection easy, choose “Set Up New System” from the app and select “Standard Option.” This feature will walk you through the entire set up process. From here, you can also use the
If you are planning to just play music, your speaker is ready to go at this point and you can stream music directly through the Sonos App.
However, if a home theater is your goal – you will need to establish your SonosNet. SonosNet will use your Wi-Fi to send signals to each of the connected devices. Simply network each device to your Sonos App to build your personal Sonos surround sound portfolio.
The Sonos surround sound system is proprietary. That means, the SonosNet created by Sonos is almost completely unparalleled. No other company today can deliver surround sound to an entire house, let alone have it entirely controlled from your smartphone exactly like Sonos can.
Sonos provides devices that can work alone or together. However, unless you also purchase a Sonos Connect, your system will likely not work with other home theater components (aside from your television that is). That being said, the Sonos surround sound experience means you do not have to scramble to figure out which devices will work with which components. Almost every Sonos product will work with the others – ensuring your entire system is 100% compatible with each other.
There is no denying that Sonos products come at a hefty cost. In fact, a full system may cost you well over $2,000 depending on which pieces you decide to buy. But is a Sonos home theater worth it?
For many, the quality, sophistication and capabilities inherent in a Sonos product make each item worth the premium price tag. Whether you are looking for a home theater that offers pristine surround sound or want to experience whole-home audio as you never have before – Sonos can make those dreams a reality.
For many, the advantages of a Sonos set up make it worth their premium price. With more and more people enjoying the convenience of a digital assistant or smartphone control, integrating these features into your home theater experience gives you even more control and adaptability.
Does Sonos support Dolby Digital? Yes and no. Sonos supports Dolby Digital 2.0, Dolby Digital 5.1 and PCM. However, it does not support Dolby Digital Plus (DD+), Dolby Digital 7.1, DTS or Dolby Atmos. That being said, many platforms including your television and Sonos Beam, will downgrade your Dolby signal to Dolby Digital 5.1 to work with speakers that cannot support DD+. Sonos has also been conducting surveys to determine customer demand for a DD+ capability.
Can Sonos One be used for surround sound? Sometimes. The Sonos One is one of the smallest speakers available from the company. However, it does not lack