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I’m on a roll when it comes to sound bars. I’ve had a chance to test out a lot of big name brands lately. Want to know if the sleek and compact Sonos Beam soundbar is right for you? Let’s dig into what it does, how the set up process works, what sets this sound bar apart from others (including other Sonos products), and most importantly, how it sounds.
What is Sonos Beam?
Sonos Beam is a compact sound bar meant to connect to your TV. Beam connects to your TV using an HDMI cable (?????or digital optical audio to give your TV improved overall sound, because let’s be honest, internal TV speakers aren’t great. They certainly don’t match the level of quality of 4K or 8K video. Beam is slim, shorter than a lot of soundbars and not too tall, and it can be set on furniture, shelves, or wall mounted. As far as the looks and styling go, I’m in love.
Beam has the ability to add digital assistant function too, so you can use voice commands to Google Assistant or Amazon Alexa to control the bar itself, or to run your smart home gadgets. For some of you it will be important to note Beam is not Dolby Atmos enabled.
Beam also functions as a music speaker too; you can stream from your phone or device using Bluetooth, or access music and podcasts from any number of streaming services like Spotify.
How to connect Sonos Beam
You can link up to your Beam in a few different ways. You’ll have it connected via HDMI to your TV of course for TV & movie audio. You can also use Airplay, Wi-fi or Bluetooth to play music.
Sonos Beam: What’s in the Box
Sonos beam is quite simply a sound bar; It does not come with a seperate subwoofer like some sound bars do, but it’s worth noting you can purchase a Sonos SUB separately.
There is also no remote control in the box; Beam is designed to use your smartphone, voice commands via a digital assistant, or your existing TV remote, which we’ll get into.
Sonos Beam Specs
Let’s take a look at the specs on the Beam.
There’s four full-range woofers to manage mid-range vocal frequencies and to give you deep, rich bass.
One tweeter is meant to drive crisp and clear dialogue.
Three passive radiators help move air around inside the compact Sonos Beam and add warm sound to the bass. Five Class-D digital amplifiers are there to match the speaker drivers and acoustic architecture.
Five far-field microphones are used for echo cancellation and to hear you if you invoke your digital assistant like Alexa or Google.
Adjustable bass and treble controls inside the Sonos app let you customize your sound by individual room or groups of rooms.
Setting Up Sonos Beam
Setting up the Beam wasn’t trouble-free for me. I had to run the set up process about three or four times before it finally got connected.
Before you start
Disconnect existing home theater or surround sound equipment from your TV.
Connect any external devices, like a cable box or DVD player, directly to your TV. Then connect the power cord.
Use the HDMI cable to connect the soundbar to your TV. You may need the optical adapter too (the app lets you know). You have two choices:
If your TV has an HDMI ARC port, connect the HDMI cable directly to the TV’s HDMI ARC port.
If your TV doesn’t have an HDMI ARC port, attach the optical adapter to the HDMI cable and connect it to the TV’s optical digital OUT port.
Sound quality of Sonos Beam
The main feature you’re interested in is obviously sound quality. I’ll divide this into two parts; the TV audio quality and music and other listening quality.
TV audio quality
I found the Beam gave me great sound that felt like it was coming from a much larger sound bar. The audio soundscape was wide; it seems as though sound is coming from a much larger area than just the Beam. Dialogue sounded crisp and clear, effects were detailed and it was a great overall boost to the basic TV sound. The sound bar gets plenty loud enough too.
Music Audio quality
Though this device is meant for TV and movie viewing it’s also a superb music speaker, and convenient too! Listening to audio on it sounds great