Multi-room speaker options are plentiful to say the least. Unlike some of the newer additions to the multi-room speaker sector though, Sonos has been around for over a decade and it offers one of the best app platforms out there, with support for many of the big streaming services including Spotify, Apple Music and Amazon Music.

There are several speakers within the Sonos multi-room line up, but there are also two soundbars, a soundbase and a wireless subwoofer available to join the party too. 

Let us help you work out which Sonos speaker, or speakers, are the best for you.

Quick summary

The Sonos One has a similar design and sound output to the Play:1 but it offers integrated Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant voice control, capacitive touch controls and Apple AirPlay 2 support.

The Play:1 is a great little speaker and the cheapest in the main Sonos line up. It's a great starting place to embrace the Sonos system if you aren't fussed about integrated voice control.

The Play:5 is for those who want the best sound offered by Sonos. If you have the cash to spend, the Play:5 is a fantastic option and a brilliant way to start a Sonos multi-room system with a big bang.

The Beam is designed for your TV. It's compact, powerful and fully connected, offering HDMI for your TV, as well as offering Alexa and Google Assistant voice control. Like the Sonos One and Play:5, it also supports Apple AirPlay 2.

The Playbar is the larger of the two soundbars offered by Sonos. It doesn't offer HDMI or voice control like Beam, and it is pretty expensive, but it does sound great, especially when paired with a Sonos Sub.

The Playbase is delivers big sound in a slim package. It is designed to sit underneath your TV and while it doesn't offer HDMI or voice control, it does sound great like the Playbar.

The main reason you would invest in the Sub with the Beam, Playbar or Playbase is to bring a more powerful sound to your TV, movies and music. They are an expensive pair though so make sure you really want that extra bass.

The Sonos Ikea Symfonisk Wi-Fi Bookshelf Speaker is a bookshelf and speaker in one. It doesn't offer the same power as a Play:1 or Sonos One, but it's under £100 and it offers many of the Sonos features, as well as Apple AirPlay 2.

The Sonos Ikea Symfonisk Table Lamp Speaker is a table lamp and speaker in one. It has the same power as the Play:1 and it's the same price but you get a table lamp too and Apple AirPlay 2 compatibility.

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Sonos One

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  • Dimensions: 161.45 x 119.7 x 119.7mm, 1.85kg
  • Features: Built-in voice control (Alexa and Google), Apple AirPlay 2, compatible with over 80 music services, stereo pairing with two, add to group of Sonos speakers for multi-room audio, Trueplay tuning, app controlled, capacitive controls
  • Sound architecture: Two Class-D amplifiers, tweeter, mid-woofer
  • Connections: Ethernet
  • Colours: Black, White

The Sonos One brings integrated voice control from Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant thanks to its array of six far-field microphones, allowing you to control other Sonos speakers, as well as order an Uber or control smart lights, for example.

It features a similar design to the cheaper and older Play:1 (below), but the Sonos One has a colour-matched speaker grille and a capacitive touch control pad rather than physical buttons. It also offers the same sound architecture as the Play:1 while it doesn't offer the power of the Play:5, the Sonos One still sounds great for its size.

It's worth noting there is a second generation Sonos One model available which includes the addition of Bluetooth Low Energy, an updated processor and an increased memory over the 2017 model. The sound experience, design and smart functionalities remain the same as the 2017 model but the 2017 model costs £179 and the second generation model costs £199.

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Sonos Play:1

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  • Dimensions: 161.45 x 119.7 x 119.7mm, 1.85kg
  • Features: Voice control with Alexa or Google-enabled device, compatible with over 80 music services, stereo pairing with two, add to group of Sonos speakers for multi-room audio, Trueplay tuning, app controlled, physical controls
  • Sound architecture: Two Class-D amplifiers, tweeter, mid-woofer
  • Connections: Ethernet
  • Colours: Black, White

The Sonos Play:1 is one of the smallest speakers in the Sonos multi-room offering. It has a clean and simple design, with physical buttons on the top. There is no Apple AirPlay 2 compatibility or built-in voice control like the Sonos One but you can still control it with your voice if you have an Alexa or Google Assistant-enabled device.

The Play:1 offers many of the same features as other Sonos speakers, including the ability to stream your entire music library, music services and internet radio through the Sonos app, as well as control it via PC and Mac. It offers great sound for its size and like other Sonos speakers, you can pair two Play:1's together to create a stereo pair, or combine with the BeamPlaybar or Playbase and Sub for a 5.1 surround sound experience.

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Sonos Play:5

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  • Dimensions: 203 x 364 x 154mm, 6.36kg
  • Features: Voice control with Alexa or Google-enabled device, Apple AirPlay 2, compatible with over 80 music services, stereo pairing with two, add to group of Sonos speakers for multi-room audio, Trueplay tuning, app controlled, capacitive controls
  • Sound architecture: Six Class-D amplifiers, three tweeters, three mid-woofers
  • Connections: Line-in, Ethernet
  • Colours: Black, White

The 2015 Play:5 is the biggest speaker in the Sonos line-up and the most powerful. It features capacitive touch controls, a plastic front grille and it can be positioned vertically or horizontally. There is no built in voice control but users with an Alexa or Google Assistant-enabled device can control the Play:5 with their voice and there is Apple AirPlay 2 compatibility too.

As with other Sonos speakers, you get the same option to pair two Play:5's together, have multi-room audio, combine it with TV speakers for surround sound, place the speaker where you choose when connected to the Wi-Fi mesh network, as well as the streaming options and app features.


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Sonos Ikea Symfonisk speakers

Sonos and Ikea teamed up together to offer the Symfonisk Wi-Fi Book Shelf Speaker and the Symfonisk Table Lamp Speaker. Both offer all the same features as other Sonos speakers, including Trueplay tuning, multi-room audio, compatibility with over 80 music services, the ability to stereo pair two of the same and voice control via an Alexa or Google Assistant-enabled device.

The Sonos Ikea Symfonisk speakers are controlled via the Sonos app but they have dual functions in that the Book Shelf speaker can be a bookshelf too, as well as positioned vertically or horizontally, while the Table Lamp is a lamp as well as a speaker. Both are AirPlay 2 compatible. 

The Symfonisk Wi-Fi Book Shelf Speaker is the cheapest way to start a Sonos system at £99, offering decent sound for the price and size. The Symfonisk Table Lamp Speaker is more expensive at £149 but it has a very functional design and great sound. 


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Sonos Beam

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  • Dimensions: 100 x 651 x 68.5mm, 2.8kg
  • Features: Built-in voice control (Alexa and Google), Apple AirPlay 2, compatible with over 80 music services, stereo pairing with two, add to group of Sonos speakers for multi-room audio, Trueplay tuning, app controlled, capacitive controls
  • Sound architecture: Five Class-D amplifiers, four full-range woofers, tweeter, three passive radiators
  • Connections: Ethernet, Optical, HDMI
  • Colours: Black, White

The Sonos Beam is a compact soundbar, offering all the features of a Sonos speaker but TV smarts too with HDMI ARC on board - taking the sound from your TV, but allowing Beam to control your TV too - as well as optical as a second option.

There's built-in Alexa and Google Assistant voice control, as well as AirPlay 2 support too. The Sonos Beam works with all other Sonos products in a multi-room setup and can also be paired with the Sub and other speakers for a 5.1 surround sound setup, but perhaps the most attractive element is that it's much cheaper than the Playbar or Playbase, while offering better connectivity.

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Sonos Playbar

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  • Dimensions: 85 x 900 x 140mm, 5.4kg
  • Features: Voice control with Alexa or Google Assistant enabled device, compatible with over 80 music services, stereo pairing with two, add to group of Sonos speakers for multi-room audio, Trueplay tuning, app controlled, physical controls
  • Sound architecture: Nine Class-D amplifiers, six mid-range woofers, three tweeters
  • Connections: Optical input, Two Ethernet ports
  • Colours: Black

The Sonos Playbar is the larger of the two soundbars in the Sonos portfolio, designed to complement your TV, but work as a standalone speaker too, like the Beam, with all the standard Sonos features. It offers clear, boombastic sound but unlike the Beam, optical is your only connection option. 

Physical controls are present over capacitive and there is no built-in voice control or Apple AirPlay 2 compatibility like the Beam offers for less money. As with the Beam though, you can connect the Playbar to your TV for 3.0 home cinema sound, pair it up to the Sonos Sub for 3.1 home cinema, or take it one step further and add a couple of Sonos One, Play:1, Play:5 speakers or even Ikea Symfonisk Bookshelf Speakers for 5.1 home cinema surround sound with a Playbar and Sub.

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Sonos Playbase

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  • Dimensions: 380 x 720 x 58mm, 8.6kg
  • Features: Voice control with Alexa or Google Assistant enabled device, Apple Airplay 2 compatibility, compatible with over 80 music services, stereo pairing with two, add to group of Sonos speakers for multi-room audio, Trueplay tuning, app controlled, capacitive controls
  • Sound architecture: Ten Class-D amplifiers, six mid-range woofers, three tweeters, one woofer
  • Connections: Optical input, Ethernet port
  • Colours: Black, White

The Sonos Playbase is a soundbase rather than a soundbar, designed for TVs that are not wall-mounted, with the intention being that its super-slim build slides beneath the TV as oppose to hung under it on the wall. It follows the same design principals as the Play:5, with black and white colour options, a premium plastic exterior and capacitive touch control buttons.

Like the Playbar, you can connect the Playbase to your TV with an optical cable for 3.0 home cinema sound, pair it up with the Sonos Sub for 3.1 home cinema, or add two Sonos One, Play:1, Play:5 speakers or Ikea Symfonisk Bookshelf Speakers for 5.1 surround sound. It will also work with your TV remote and it is also a very capable standalone speaker as well as a TV sound booster.

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Sonos Sub

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  • Dimensions: 389 x 402 x 158mm, 16kg
  • Sound architecture: Two Class-D amplifiers, two force-cancelling speakers
  • Connections: Ethernet port, Dual acoustic ports
  • Colours: Black, White

The Sonos Sub is an extension of the Sonos Beam, Playbar or Playbase, and its intention is to add more depth to everything you hear by introducing more bass, offering a frequency response down to 25Hz. You will be able to stand the Sonos Sub upright or lay it flat and it features built-in rubber feet, as well as optional feet.

Audio settings are automatically adjusted to balance the Sub and the paired Sonos component and like the rest of the Sonos system, the Sub can be controlled using the Sonos app and it will connect wirelessly to your home network so you can place it wherever you choose.