Home / Technology / Sonos PLAY:5 (2015) Review

Sonos PLAY:5 (2015) Review

The Sonos PLAY:5 is special. First of a streaming song company’s all-in-one speakers, a launch in 2009 noted a change to a plug-and-play morality that Sonos is now famous for, yet sacrificing a sound peculiarity that song lovers demanded. Since then, new and some-more affordable models have lured in a uninformed era of wireless fans, while products like a PLAYBAR have tackled home museum audio, yet it’s taken until now for a granddaddy of a operation to get a large revamp.

Sonos’ styling is both informed and new. 2015′s PLAY:5 has a tangible trapezoidal figure of a smaller siblings, yet it’s a some-more mature design: a physique of a orator is now a singular piece, and a micro-perforated grille shows incomparable refinement around a edges.


The many apparent on-device changes are a new controls. Running opposite a tip there are touch-sensitive buttons for volume and play/pause; however, swiping left or right opposite them skips behind or brazen in your playlist. Previously, we could double-tap a play/pause symbol on Sonos speakers to burst ahead, yet there was no approach to step back, so it’s a useful improvement.

On a back, there’s an ethernet pier and a 3.5mm aux-in; a latter can tide any outmost source opposite your whole Sonos network, not usually play it behind by a PLAY:5 it’s connected to. Absent, though, is a second ethernet pier a strange PLAY:5 had, and that offering pass-through connectivity to a connected device.


Ease of setup has always been a hallmark of Sonos’ products, and a PLAY:5 is tiny different. After plugging it in, we non-stop a app on my iPhone, comparison a “add new speaker” option, and pulpy a symbol on a behind of a PLAY:5.

After a few moments it famous my existent Sonos speakers, and afterwards offering to travel me by a Trueplay process.

Trueplay is a new feature, dictated not usually for a new PLAY:5 yet a strange version, in further to a PLAY:1 and PLAY:3. Effectively it’s a spatially-minded involuntary EQ system, that uses uses an iOS device’s microphone to acoustically map a space around a orator and afterwards adjust bass, mid, and three-way to suit.


For a moment, Android users are out of fitness – Sonos tells me that’s given a movement in microphone hardware opposite OEMs creates it wily to order – yet given we usually need to run Trueplay once per plcae they could feasibly entice an iPhone owners to cooking and afterwards steal their handset for a setup process.

Once triggered, a PLAY:5 sounds a swooping droning sound and we spend a subsequent 45 seconds or so walking around a room, solemnly fluttering your iPhone or iPad adult and down with sold courtesy paid to a places you’re approaching to be listening during many often. That gets steady for each particular speaker.

Sonos says that a EQ adjustments that take place as a outcome are some-more granular than a user-facing drum and three-way sliders in a app, yet not each room will need Trueplay adjustment. we initial attempted a PLAY:5 in a larger, rectilinear space, placed on a extended window edge nearby a dining list where we work from sometimes, yet after using by a routine a app told me no tradition changes indispensable to be made.


In contrast, when we changed a PLAY:5 into a dilemma of a opposite room, tucked onto a shelf, Trueplay motionless it could make improvements to a settings. Sure enough, marks we listened to before and after tuning sounded clearer and reduction muffled; we don’t consider we would have indispensably suspicion previously that they were lacking in some way, yet Trueplay positively softened them.

That song sounded so good yet tuning is covenant to a PLAY:5 itself. Behind a grille are 3 10cm midrange drivers, dual 2cm tweeters on a left and right, and a final 2.2cm tweeter in a middle.


Just as a PLAYBAR uses motorist angling to enlarge a stereo soundstage, a new PLAY:5 points a outdoor tweeters scarcely sideways. It’s what gives a all-in-one a sound some-more like dual particular speakers, and yet you’re never going to get a accurate audio knowledge of truly apart left and right channels, it’s an alleviation over a aged system.

Bass is also impressive. Unlike a strange PLAY:5 a new chronicle isn’t ported, with Sonos switching to a hermetic enclosing this time around. There’s a grunt and rumble that achieves both appetite and accurate restraint, rather than sounding weak or loose. Certainly if you’re a bass-addict you’ll substantially wish to chuck in a Sonos SUB, yet section dwellers will roughly positively find a new PLAY:5 has some-more than adequate low-end to green family with their neighbors.


At a other end, there’s both flicker and pointing to a treble, while a midrange lacks a anonymity that some all-in-one speakers can humour from. It’ll holder adult high, too – a volume up/down buttons flip course according to that approach adult we have a orator – yet distortion.

Unfortunately, Sonos usually supposing me with a singular PLAY:5 unit, so we couldn’t exam out a interconnected mode. There, though, we can also have a dual speakers in possibly plane or honest positions, a former earnest a wider stereo picture and a latter a some-more focused sweet-spot softened matched to particular listening.

Things competence urge there over time, too. Sonos has already demonstrated that a program upgradability of a speakers allows aged dogs to be taught new tricks, yet a PLAY:5 indeed comes with hardware future-proofing too.


Two microphones live inside a enclosure, now asleep yet watchful for firmware to capacitate them. What they’ll indeed do during that indicate is, Sonos openly admits, a mystery: they’re usually there given a hypothesis is that a engineers competence find them useful down a line.

Whatever they’re activated for, Sonos promises that owners will get a warning before that happens, along with a ability to opt-out.

Given that arrange of brazen planning, I’m a tiny unhappy that a PLAY:5 lacks a digital submit and usually has analog-in. The PLAYBAR, for example, has an visual input, and while that’s unequivocally dictated for soundtrack audio from your TV or Blu-ray player, I’ve used it before with unchanging stereo sources to good result.


Instead, Sonos would rather we used a accumulation of streaming sources accessible – Apple Music is approaching to be upheld before a finish of a year – or offline marks saved to your computer, phone, or network-attached storage.

The Sonos app has had a severe patches, and it’s still not utterly as candid during times as behind in a progressing days. I’m of a mind to put that down in no tiny partial to a incomparable series of third-party sources it now supports compared to then.

All a same, carrying lived with Amazon’s Echo and a voice tranquil Prime Music playback for some time now, I’d adore to see Sonos capacitate debate approval for playlists and tracks.


Streaming song has come a prolonged approach in a 5 years given Sonos launched a strange PLAY:5 – née S5 – with some of a biggest changes being cost of entry. Sonos’ possess operation is some-more affordable, with a $199 PLAY:1, yet alternatives like Google’s Chromecast Audio – during $35 – are even cheaper, despite with a additional responsibility of apart speakers.

Is there, then, a place for a $499 wireless orator – or, if we wish stereo, a $998 pair? Having lived with a new Sonos PLAY:5 I’m disposed to contend yes. Sound peculiarity is noticeably improved, a preference of a one-box complement is tough to overstate, and as always Sonos hits a fundamentals like ideally synchronized multi-zone playback yet violation a sweat.


PLAY:1 will sojourn a gateway drug to Sonos ownership, and we could make a legitimate evidence for a span of PLAY:3 (at $598 altogether) instead of a singular PLAY:5.

Nonetheless, even compared to a latter setup, a PLAY:5 sparkles that tiny bit more. Sonos competence not recover new products each day, yet when it does they’re not usually memorable, yet they come with improvements like Trueplay that don’t leave comparison models behind. If a association can distill a transparent attracts of a PLAY:5 into a revamp of a rest of a range, all a better.

Article source: http://www.slashgear.com/sonos-play5-2015-review-29412200/

Scroll To Top