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(Pocket-lint) - Sonos has reportedly released a microphone-free version of Sonos Arc, its Dolby Atmos soundbar, in North America.

The new soundbar carries the “SL” branding - same as the Sonos One SL speakers that also lack microphones. However, whereas those speakers received no price reduction, this version of the Arc is $50 cheaper than the regular model. Unlike the Sonos Arc, which comes in black, the Sonos Arc SL is available in a “shadow edition” colour (that's basically almost black). There doesn't appear to be any other differences between the two.

In our review of the regular Sonos Arc, we described it as a superb Dolby Atmos soundbar – right up there with the best – and has all the bells and whistles of Sonos' multi-room system and more. You just need to match it with a Dolby Atmos supporting TV to get the best performance.

If you're reading this in the UK and want to get your hands on one: Sorry, no dice. It's supposed to be available exclusively at Costco in the US and Canada from 2 December 2020. Android Central noticed it's already being sold at Costco and recently appeared on Reddit.

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From what we can tell, the audio and hardware is all the same on the Sonos Arc SL. It just gray-ish and lacks built-in mics for Alexa and Google Assistant voice commands. It also costs $749, rather than $799. While that's not a huge savings, every little bit helps, right? Especially at Christmastime.

Writing by Maggie Tillman. Originally published on 3 December 2020.