In recent years, multiroom audio specialist Sonos has established itself as the leader in multiroom smart speakers and soundbars with the Sonos Beam (Gen 2) and Sonos Arc . The Californian manufacturer now offers a more compact and affordable model: the Sonos Ray. Designed to pair with any TV, the new Sonos Ray soundbar promises to deliver more powerful stereo sound for less than €300.
Sonos Ray: the smallest Sonos bar
The Sonos Ray soundbar is the brand’s most compact model. With a length of 55 cm, it is 10 cm shorter than the Sonos Beam (Gen 2), promising a harmonious association with smaller televisions. The Sonos Ray is slightly taller, though, at 7.1cm versus 6.9cm for the Sonos Beam. We would have liked a thinner design, like the models in the top 10 thin soundbars . However, it remains flat enough to be installed in front of the majority of the latest generation televisions.
Sonos Ray: stereo soundbar
Marketed at only €299, the Sonos Ray soundbar is much affordable than the manufacturer’s previous models: €499 for the Sonos Beam (Gen 2) and €999 for the Sonos Arc. This naturally implies the absence of certain features such as Dolby Atmos or DTS:X compatibility. The HDMI eARC is also replaced by a single optical input. So while the new Sonos Ray soundbar can play Dolby and DTS tracks up to 5.1 channels, it’s only capable of outputting them in stereo. However, it is still possible to combine it with Sonos connected speakers such as the SONOS One SL , Sonos One , Sonos Roam or Sonos Roam SL for the reproduction of surround effects, as well as the Sonos Sub wireless subwoofer (gen 3) for deeper lows. The American manufacturer thus continues to democratize wireless home theater systems with multiroom functions and compatibility with voice assistants.
As usual, the manufacturer pairs each driver with its own amplifier. There are also several DSPs to customize sound depending on the program being viewed, as well as TruePlay calibration. As demonstrated in the tests of the Sonos Beam (Gen 2) and the Sonos ARC , this function optimizes sound reproduction in a very convincing manner based on the acoustic properties of the room.
Sonos Ray: streaming and multiroom
The American manufacturer owes its success to its very stable control application, as well as compatibility with all music services. The Sonos Ray carries on this tradition, with AirPlay 2 streaming, access to web radios, as well as all streaming services like Apple Music, Deezer, Qobuz, etc. It can also fit into a group of AirPlay 2 or Sonos-enabled speakers and devices to stream music throughout your home.
Sonos Ray: voice assistants
While the Sonos Beam (Gen 2) and Sonos Arc integrate Google Assistant and Alexa voice assistants, the Sonos Ray soundbar does not have a microphone. However, it is still possible to control it vocally by coupling it to equipment that features one of these assistants, but also with Siri or the new Sonos Voice assistant.
With the new Sonos Ray, the American manufacturer offers a soundbar that is more affordable than ever, while maintaining the streaming options that have made the brand so successful. It is the ideal partner for any 40” TV or larger to offer a more powerful and more realistic stereo reproduction of films, video games and music.