Smart Speaker Comparison: A Helpful Illustrated Guide

I’m am not going to sit here blowing smoke about your smart assistant being the smart speakers to play music with. To try and say that Alexa, Google Home, Siri or any other assistants out there in the market are cat’s pajamas when it comes to listening to music. This would have you say that am full of crap.

There is no secret that smart assistants are tiny sounding and cannot be a replacement for a real stereo system. True audiophiles can know the difference right out of the gate.

The Best Smart Speaker For Music

Any person that has used smart assistants previously knows that they cannot handle playing music in any type of quality or real definition. Though there is this one player in the smart home music market. But they are talked about very much. They are the Sonos.

You may have heard of the Sonos or may be seen the little box somewhere at a local coffee shop mounted in a corner somewhere and was playing your favourite tune with good quality.

Well, that is exactly what I went through. It happened to me once; I was having breakfast at a local shop, one of my favourite places. Then I heard Bohemian Rapsody by Queen was playing somewhere in a corner.

The crisp and clear sound could not get over me. I struggled to still hold the conversation with my wife because I could still hear the dulcet tone of the song playing in the background. That little piece of technology amazed me.

That was so classy, I thought. I needed to have one of those. So for quite some time in the past few years, I have owned several of-of these pieces of Sonos equipment. I can now consider myself a Sonos collector by now.

What Makes Sonos Smart Speakers Different?

The beauty of having Sonos is they have a cross-platform streaming music interface that is very agnostic. I may not mat whether it may not matter what you are using, whether Amazon music, Pandora, Spotify, apple music or tidal. They cover anything you may have or can imagine of.

They perfect the way you will listen to music. They offer the ability to listen to different types of music and different songs in different parts of your home at the same time. Another advantage is that one can control them with the phone. The problem of hunting for remotes is now long gone. This is the hi-fi system and technology you have been waiting for.

Sonos provides a smart speaker with the new Sonos one which is much unparalleled, and you will not find this technology anywhere else. It will work well with all digital assistants like Amazon’ Alexa, Siri and Google assistant.

That is pretty cool and right out of the box. They are also easy to set up just as you can see in the video below.

What Smart Speaker Options Does Sonos Offer?

The fun part is this. I am going to break it all down into three sections because their many different options to choose from. For each, there is a particular use, and in the end, it is all upon you to decide to choose which is going to serve you in your entertainment and music needs.

Sonos speakers, usually come in both the white and black in most cases. These enable them to fit the motif of any home that does not matter the kind of speaker you may decide to with.

Standalone Speakers

If you have been out there looking for a single smart speaker that will give you a big sound, then this is probably the part you have been looking for. There are four Sonos options that you get when it comes to getting a perfect speaker for your room.

Sonos One

The Sonos one offers you not only the much better quality of music than the standard Bluetooth speakers or any smart assistant. But it also includes Alexa that is built right in. That is the part that makes it smart, and also a smart choice as well, this will be a great entry point into the multi-speaker setup that fits your home. You can check their price on Amazon here.

Sonos Play:1

The Sonos Play: 1 is the predecessor of the Sonos one. The difference that is there between the play:1 from the Sonos one is because the play:1 does not have built-in Alexa.though, you will still get the same rich music experience as you would with the Sonos one, and it is also less expensive.

This may be the better option if you have a small room and you would like to add music to, and you don’t have the desire to control music with your voice. Just as the other Sonos speakers, it allows you to use the app on your smartphone or on your computer to control. As I said earlier, they are less expensive than the Sonos one, but you can still check out their current price over here on Amazon.

Sonos Play:3

If you are looking for a little more speaker, then you may like this mid-sized wireless smart speaker the play:3. This speaker features one tweeter and also two mid-range drivers and also a built-in bass radiator. They are great and the best option for stereo quality sound for a single room in my opinion. You can check out their current prices and reviews here on Amazon if you are interested.

Sonos Play:5

If you are looking for the single biggest and also a best-sounding speaker, then you may want to take a look at the play:5. This features six amplifiers with also six dedicated speaker drivers. The beauty of having them is that you can fill even the largest rooms you have with big sound. You can also pair them with your stereo to make the sound bigger and better. They are perfect for a big open concept home where there are not many walls to get in the way.

Speaker and Home Theater Sets

If you are a true audiophile, then you will clearly understand the importance of having more than just one of these little speakers. The ability to listen to music in multiple rooms is a big plus to geeks like us. Not only that, but Sonos also offers some great home theatre sets.

You know the scene at the beginning of Star Wars Movie? Where the Star Destroyer is coming into view from the front to the back of your screen? Well, I will say this, if you pick in of this Sonos home theatre packages, the sound will be like it is coming in the right over your head. This is one of the best purchases that I have ever made, hands down!

Sonos One Sets

Out of all the sets that Sonos offers for music, I have to admit that these are probably my best. Mainly because they offer smart assistant compatibility. Mine is set up with Alexa, and I find them working wonderfully. They provide two, three and four room set. They are worth the money if you want to be able to listen to different tracks of music in your home.

They also offer a two-room Play:5 system,  which does not provide smart assistant compatibility. But as I had said previously, you can still pair them up in one room to have a full sound in the room as well. You can have a look at all the different options for the Sonos One sets over here on Amazon. You are likely going to find the perfect system that will fit your smart home.

Entertainment and Surround Sound Sets

There are different options that one can have when it comes to Sonos, especially the smart entertainment part and home theatre options. This is broken down into two segments. The slightly less expensive 3.1 audio entertainment system sets and also their higher end 5.1 surround sound sets.

There are many different configurations as well that one can choose from, and I am going to go through all of them just here, but you can have a look at these here on Amazon to have a clear picture.

Other Stuff

Just as I had mentioned above there, I own a lot of Sonos equipment. But at times you may want a little better control over what you have already. Let us say that you paid a lot of money to get a sound system and you do not intend to replace it or you may be having the preference of vinyl sound over some of the digital audio.

If that is the case with you, then Sonos connect wireless receiver might just be the perfect fit you need. It plugs into the existing system so that it enables you to control it wirelessly. It also offers all of the same functionality that one would have with any other Sonos speakers without buying new speakers.

If you are a die-hard fan, you can find the alternative of picking the Sonos to connect AMP. This will plug directly into your old speakers and give you a Sonos functionality which is similar if you already have the Sonos wireless receiver.

The following are some few concerns that I had when I wanted to buy the Sonos smart speakers.

Can Sonos use Bluetooth?

Sonos One are the new speakers that are multi-room functional and connect over Wi-Fi. However, Bluetooth connection is not included.

When you use Wi-Fi connection, you can link multiple Sonos speakers through their easy to use application. They are permanent home speakers, thus meaning no battery life and little portability.

Sonos speakers sound excellent and are well known for being the top wireless speakers with just a few drawbacks.

How do I connect Sonos speakers?

These are the steps you may want to follow when setting up the Sonos speakers for the very first time.

Step 1: Unbox and plug it in

You have first to unbox it and put it in a place that you want it to be for the foreseeable future. If you have any plans of connecting the speakers to Wi-Fi, then place them close to your router to make sure that your Wi-Fi signal is strong.

If you plan on using a wired internet connection, then you should ensure that your speaker is close enough to your router for an Ethernet cable to connect the two.

Use the supplied cable in the box for connecting your Sonos speaker to the power outlet, and wait for the light to flash green.

Step 2: Download the Sonos app

You will then be required to download the Sonos app, if you are using Mac or PC, open your web browser and go to support.sonos.com and you will be able to download the app there.

If you are using Android or iOS, you can still download the Sonos app from Google play store or Apple App Store.

Step 3: choose your setup type

After you have installed the app, open it and enter ‘Set up new Sonos System’. You will then be asked the kind of set up you prefer to go through. If you’re not using Ethernet cable and haven’t bought a Sonos boost, just press ‘standard setup’.

Step 4: select your speakers

If the device you are using is connected to your Wi-Fi network, you should be able to see the available Sonos speakers in your home.

If you have multiple of them, you should choose which one you want to set up first by just swiping between them on your screen.

Step 5: put your speakers into join mode

You will then be asked to press a few buttons on the Sonos speaker at the same time; this depends on the speakers that you have. This will enable a temporary Wi-Fi network to be created.

Step 6: Connect to the Wi-Fi network (if you need to)

After you have pressed the buttons, you will hear a chime and a flashing orange light will be shown by the speaker. You will have to confirm with the app that you use this.

When you confirm, the app will start configuring the speaker; you may connect your temporary Wi-Fi network. For some tablet and android phone users they may not do all this. Play:5 would work automatically if you’ve it.

If you would like to connect it, go to devices on your Wi-Fi settings then choose ‘Sonos’.  Once connected, go back to the Sonos app and continue. You may need a password.

Once you are done with that, select a name for your new Sonos speaker. We would recommend that you use the room in which it is in, like say, ‘living room’.

Step 7: add more speakers if you’ve got them

If you would like to set up a second speaker or more others, hit ‘Add Another Player’ and repeat the setup process. This will require you assign each speaker a name.

Conclusion

So now that we have considerably covered your options for the best smart speakers on the market, what is your next step? Pick up a Sonos One and give it a try! I am sure you will find the quality outstanding and the options you will have for expansion are also never-ending.

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