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The new SONOS!
On January 27, 2005, after 4 years of research and development, the first Sonos products left the factory to be delivered to new retailers. Initially few in number, the number of dealers grew steadily. Sonxplus, the proudly Quebecois chain, was one of the first to recognize the potential of this wonderful product.
This product, with its Apple-like marketing techniques, is one of integral quality, whether in performance, durability or even packaging, everything is perfectly executed. Every year, major innovations are presented to the public, and this year is no exception. Sonos has embarked on an overhaul of its S2 platform, which stands out for its greatly increased capacity to support high-fidelity broadcasting, as well as its ability to reproduce the Dolby Atmos sound found in all good serious movies, as well as music as broadcast by Apple Music. Without further ado, let's get to the heart of the matter!
What is SONOS?
Sonos California office
A: Founded in 2002, Sonos was the brainchild of several players, including a former Apple executive in the U.S., as well as a number of visionaries, engineers and marketing specialists... The need, which the company decided to focus on, was to democratize and even facilitate the installation of an audio system worthy of the new era known as "Home Automation". Some companies, such as Control 4 to name but one, offered more expensive solutions, requiring a contractor's involvement in the equation. The other problem was the immobility of the sound systems of the time. They were big and bulky, and required numerous interconnections. In short, people were fed up with clutter and wires, hoping one day for the arrival of a wireless system, without the multitude of devices such as radio tuners, cassette recorders, record players, and so on. Sonos is the complete opposite.
Sonos offers a multitude of wireless speakers with Wi-Fi connectivity, enabling you to play music recorded on your portable devices such as smartphones, tablets and computers, in Android, IOS or Windows environments. What's more, Sonos offers access to millions of free music streams from the web on its Sonos Music network platform. For audiophiles, there are a host of paid services that can be added to the user's wallet, offering high-fidelity products such as QOBUZ, which has just arrived on the Canadian market.
The big news of the year, and frankly the most revolutionary, is the addition of two enhanced surround-sound interior speakers and a brand-new stereo-sounding exterior speaker. I'll explain each innovation and then tell you how it can be used for home cinema...
ERA 100: Basic features
- NEW: Analog connectivity for record players and other analog devices.
- NEW: Uses Bluetooth transmission.
- NEW: Trueplay calibration adjusts the sound to the room.
- NEW: Stereo sound now.
- NEW: Moisture-resistant.
- NEW: Can be used with the SONOS AMP " amplifier for powerful surround sound.
ERA 100 (2) Stereo disc player
The ERA 100 is the worthy replacement for the "ONE" model. It can be used on its own, and offers stereo sound thanks to the incorporation of two tweeters. Of course, if you want true, detailed stereo, you'll need two left and right units, but there's a gain in listening, especially as the system has greater transfer capacity for listening to high-resolution files. In addition to its musical use, it's even better suited to home theater, the models I recommend being the $349 "Ray" soundbar or the more musically efficient "Beam". The best "ARC" bar, however, will be better served with the ERA 300, but will still cope with the ERA 100. Newly offered is the possibility of having surround sound using your own speakers mated to the "AMP" network amplifier.
Sonos RAY affordable set
- Three Class D digital amplifiers, precisely tuned to the unique acoustic architecture of the speaker, power your sound experience.
- Trueplay measures how walls, furniture and other surfaces in a room reflect sound waves, then precisely calibrates your Sonos speaker to ensure exceptional sound wherever it's placed.
- Two angled tweeters and an individually powered woofer to reduce distortion.
ERA 300: This is the improved return of the Play 3, between the FIVE and the new ERA 100.
- NEW: Dolby Atmos.
- NEW: Uses Bluetooth + wifi transmission.
- NEW : 6 Class D amplifiers.
- NEW : NEW upward-firing speakers for Atmos surround sound.
- NEW : moisture-resistant.
- NEW : Trueplay calibration to adjust sound to the room, including Dolby Atmos.
Sonos ARC and ERA 300 Ultimate Package
The ERA 300 is totally new, and has been specifically designed for Dolby Atmos cinema sound reinforcement. Dolby Atmos is the feature that envelops the listener at 360 degrees for total immersion. Present in all good cinema systems, it is now possible with Sonos to reproduce sound coming from the front and rear, as well as from above our heads. To do this, you'll need the ARC bar.
or at least the "BEAM", offering simulated upward sound for the latter. All Sonxplus stores have them on display, including Chambly, which offers all the possibilities for listening. A new feature is the possibility of creating surround sound using your own speakers, coupled with the AMP network amplifier. The more powerful ERA 300 will be perfectly at home with the AMP, which offers 200 watts of power for concert-like surround sound at home. Surround music is currently available from Apple Music and Amazon Music.
MOVE 2 or how to improve on a success!
- NEW: battery life increases from 11 to 24 hours.
- NEW: Internal stereo sound
- NEW: three Class D amplifiers
- NEW: Tweeter drivers placed at the ends for good stereo separation.
- NEW: Environmentally-friendly manufacturing approach and packaging, plus user-replaceable battery.
The MOVE already had its fans, and the MOVE 2 doesn't offer anything revolutionary compared to its predecessor, but it's greatly improved. Sound is better, as is battery life. Discounts will be offered on remaining MOVE 1 stocks, to be continued...
What the Sonos 2023-24 offer has in common.
- High-fidelity design.
Without being an audiophile product, Sonos products offer performance that can be described as high-fidelity, particularly in products introduced in the last 5 years. Two drivers are used, one for low and medium frequencies and one for high frequencies. Many portable speakers use only one, and it's noticeable!
- Automatic TruePlay audio fidelity correction.
Autocalibration is becoming widespread at Sonos.
A neutrally calibrated microphone picks up the sounds in the room and the Trueplay software analyzes them. Depending on the environment, whether indoors or outdoors, a real-time correction is made to obtain the richest, purest sound possible. It's scientific and technological.
- Integrated voice control.
Since we already have a microphone to enable analysis, we might as well take the opportunity to add voice control from Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant or even Siri. Simply ask to play music, check the news, control your smart home automation devices, and so on. If you already own Sonos products, you'll now be able to control them remotely!
- Integrated Wi-Fi.
Unlike other similar products based on Bluetooth transmission only, the new Sonos offers both Bluetooth and Wi-Fi via its own app-based listening platform. This means that at home, you can listen to your music on your computer or stream via the Sonos app. Your visiting friends can easily share their music via Bluetooth. The best of both worlds!
- Apple ecosystem.
It's no surprise that these Apple alumni are integrating Siri functions with AirPlay 2. Use AirPlay 2 to stream sound directly from your iPhone, iPad or Mac to Sonos, and ask Siri to turn up the volume or skip a song.
- Long standby time.
There is no power on/off function on Sonos products, this is done automatically when you stop listening!
The final word
Scoop! Looking forward (very soon) to Sonos' new annual fall sale and holiday season. We invite you to stop by and listen to these technological masterpieces. Sonos products are impeccable and very reliable, as evidenced by the manufacturer's 2-year warranty. When it comes to compact home theater, there's no better product on the market today. Few compact products offer the level of high fidelity that Sonos does, allowing you to listen to movies AND music in high audio resolution.
For music listening, we suggest you use QOBUZ for its high-resolution discography, the SIRIUS XM service for uninterrupted music content advertised by musical style, and SONOS RADIO for free access.