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1,050 of 1,087 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Sonos 101 and the Play:3
Here's the problem with Sonos. Most of these reviews are worthless for a new customer as they have no concept what the various components do, how they fit together and what they should get! In fact, I will say that Sonos could significantly improve the messaging of their products. Think about it -- is a new customer going to have any idea what ZonePlayer or Bridge means...
Published on July 30, 2011 by Captain Latte

versus
244 of 282 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Not even close to Sonos 5 (play:5)
I had 3 Sonos 5's (now called the play:5) and I wanted to add 4th. The play:3 came out so I decided to save the $100 or so and go for the play:3 after reading all the reviews of it. I had the unit exactly 30 minutes before deciding to return it. It's not even close to the 5's. Volume is control is jumpy, not linear like the 5's, power is about half of 5's and once...
Published on September 10, 2011 by Stephen Gibson


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1,050 of 1,087 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Sonos 101 and the Play:3, July 30, 2011
By 
Here's the problem with Sonos. Most of these reviews are worthless for a new customer as they have no concept what the various components do, how they fit together and what they should get! In fact, I will say that Sonos could significantly improve the messaging of their products. Think about it -- is a new customer going to have any idea what ZonePlayer or Bridge means. Even their website is quite confusing for someone new to all of this stuff. For example, they sell a ZonePlayer120 and ZonePlayer90, which have vastly different functionality. Sonos should just get rid of their marketing folks and hire some people from Apple to fix the messaging confusion. My advice for folks who want to learn more about Sonos is to find a friend with one or go to local stereo shop. Fortunately, the folks on the tech-side of Sonos know what the heck they are doing and why I give this 5 stars!

OK, I just bought a new Black Play:3 along with the Bridge. In a nutshell, here is probably all you need to know:

- Why... The Play:3 is essentially for folks who want to listen to their digital music through a high-quality speaker system that is wirelessly connected to sources of music. Typically, the music is coming from your computer's library (e.g., iTunes) or some internet service such as Pandora or TuneIn (internet radio). How do you control all of this -- by using one of their nifty free apps which run on iPhones, iPod Touch, Androids, iPads (with more to come).

- The Play:3 is your speaker component where sound comes out of. The only connection to worry about is AC power. The beauty of this is that you can move your speaker anywhere in your house at will just as you would with a clock radio.

- The Bridge is a little white box that connects to your WiFi router. It functions to stream music from the source to your Play:3 speaker, wherever that may be. Sure, you don't really need this $50 box as you could plug your Play:3 into your router, but then you defeat much of the purpose for getting a Sonos (wireless portability).

- Sonos makes setup of everything about as easy as possible. If you have a firewall (e.g., at workplace), then things become a little more complicated (you're best off just calling tech support instead of wasting hours figuring it out, which I know many have done).

- I decided to copy my entire iTunes library to a network (NAS) drive and just have Sonos access this. Essentially, I have a portable 500GB Western Digital USB drive connected to my Apple Airport Extreme base station. It is ridiculously easy to setup. The advantage of this is that my music is always available instead of needing my computer to be turned on. Also, much of disk space on my Macbook Pro is used for photos and videos. I should say that another reason I did this was because I am running Mac OS Lion, which is not yet supported by Sonos (but this will be addressed very soon).

- The nice thing about Sonos is that I can easily expand my system later on. For example, I can buy another Play:3 so that I can setup the two in stereo. Or I can create multiple zones in my house (e.g., bedroom, living room) with each Play:3 playing different music at the same time.

- The main limitation of the Play:3 is that there is no line-in jack. This means you cannot connect an outside audio source such as a CD player. And because of this limitation, you cannot configure it using an Apple Airport Express to stream from your iOS device using Apple's Airplay technology. The Play:5 system has a line-in if you really some of these features. Personally, I would love to see Sonos come out with a cheap little white box that just has some line-in audio jacks (including optical). This box could address some of the Play:3 limitations as well as offering an easy way to connect the Sonos system to an Apple TV.

Overall, I am extremely pleased with my purchase and will likely buy another Play:3 shortly to further enhance my system. It just works...and sounds great!
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376 of 399 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Sonos is a dream come true. The Play:5 is Great, November 12, 2009
By 
PeteTechGuy (Woodside, CA USA) - See all my reviews
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<> WHAT IS SONOS?

Sonos is a wireless speaker system that streams music from your COMPUTER HARD DISK (such as your iTunes library or other downloaded music) or streams music from the INTERNET (such as 100 thousand internet radio stations, Pandora, Spotify, Rhapsody or most anything else) directly to Sonos Speakers. You CHOOSE that music on the fly using the Sonos iPhone or Android apps (or others). With Sonos, such music does not need to stream THROUGH your phone. You use the phone just for the purpose of making your choices. (The phone is the controller not the streamer, unless you want it to be)

Sonos is special because of the extraordinary range of music available, the intuitive phone app interface which so simply controls every aspect of the experience, the sound quality, the whole home flexibility, the ease of setup and installation, and the benefits of doing all this without needing to stream from the phone.

All you need to get started is one Sonos speaker (like the Play1, Play3, Play5 or Playbar) and possibly one Sonos Bridge (which connects the Sonos wireless network to your home network. See "Do you need a bridge?", below). Note that each of these speakers is fully self contained, including its own amp, pre-amp, sonos-wireless network, wireless access to the full range of music from your computer or the internet, and the ability to respond to sonos controller apps on your phones and tablets.

If you want, you can later add Sonos speakers for every room in your home, all perfectly integrated with your same phone/tablet controllers, music and grouping options. You can also include your 3rd party stereo system with a Sonos-Connect (which would be a sonos input source for that stereo system); or add 3rd party speakers with a Sonos-Connect-Amp, (a small box which itself would be both the SOURCE and AMP for any pair of 3rd party speakers. Perfect for outdoor speakers for example). These Sonos Connect devices also respond to the sonos apps on your phones and tablets, and provide the same options for music and for syncing/grouping with other rooms and speakers.

<> HOW GOOD IS THE SONOS SYSTEM?

I've been using Sonos since 2009, and it's been FLAWLESS, and an ABSOLUTE JOY.

I've got instant, automatically-updated access to all of my iTunes TRACKS, ARTISTS, PLAYLISTS AND ALBUMS. Sonos also has an excellent implementation of PANDORA, RHAPSODY, other music services, and internet radio. It's such a pleasure to hear them throughout the house and patio, controlled by my iPhone in every way, and with full broadband quality sound.

The FLEXIBILITY and EASE OF USE are equally impressive. Each room can play any independent track or other music choice, or be instantly grouped (synchronized) with any number of other rooms. When multiple rooms are grouped, it's so easy and natural to

- choose and navigate music for the group just as you would for a single room.
- control the volume of any individual room within the group.
- control the volume of the entire group while maintaining their relative levels.

I've had multi-zone home systems, costing ten times as much, that couldn't do these things. Nor can you do any of these things with standard airplay speakers or bluetooth speakers.

The ability to SIMULTANEOUSLY PLAY DIFFERENT TRACKS IN DIFFERENT ROOMS from a single iTunes library, located on a single computer, is a technological feat that also can not be achieved with standard AirPlay speakers alone. (You can also play music from multiple libraries from one or more computers or from networked attached storage, NAS). ALL OF YOUR CHOICES for any or all of your rooms can be beautifully controlled by a SINGLE IPHONE, iPod touch, iPad, Android, PC, Mac or by any number of such controllers.

I also have an Apple AIRPORT EXPRESS linked to a sonos line-in, so that my friends can stream any ITUNES OR APP music to my sonos system using Apple AIRPLAY from their iPhone. That works well, but sometimes a streaming iPhone will loose its WiFi connection as you move about the house. (Of course, iPhone/Airplay WiFi streaming glitches are not sonos related problems. This is more of an illustration of how a Phone/WiFi streaming system is likely to work.) Nonetheless, it's great to have Airplay available for friends. Some of this can now be accomplished without an Airport Express, since newer versions of the iPhone/iPad/iPod SONOS APPs can stream the iDevice's ITUNES tracks (but not other app music) to your Sonos system directly from the phone or tablet over wifi. (In this case the audio would be going from phone to router, via wifi, and from router to speaker, via SonosNet)

My Sonos system has been absolutely flawless, with a CONSISTENT, INTUITIVE INTERFACE, and my iPhone, with its Sonos controller app, is always right there in my pocket, ready to go.

Setup for all of the Sonos zones has been a snap, and the system has been a total joy from day one.

<> DO YOU NEED A BRIDGE ?

One requirement to be aware of is that you'll either need to get a Sonos Bridge OR connect this Play5, OR any other Sonos Player (ie, a Play1, Play3, Play5, PlayBar, SUB, Sonos-Connect, or Sonos-Connect-Amp) anywhere in your home, directly to your router or LAN with the included ethernet cable. Only one sonos device or bridge needs to be hardwired to the router or LAN.

So if one Sonos device will be close enough to your router (or to any Ethernet port on your LAN) to plug it in, then you won't need a bridge. Otherwise you will. A bridge costs $50 by itself, but lately sonos has been offering a special bundle (available on sonos.com and amazon), which includes the bridge for free when you buy a sonos speaker. (But you must see that special offer AND add the bridge to your shopping cart!)

<> THE SONOS WIRELESS NETWORK

Every Sonos device uses the Sonos Wireless Network, which itself offers some key advantages over most competing speakers.

With the sonos network, each sonos device wirelessly communicates directly with other sonos devices (using what's called a "wireless mesh network"). Thus when you have multiple sonos devices, each one automatically becomes a wireless relay to the next closest sonos device and on and on, successively back to the router. This means that multiple sonos devices are likely to give you far better wireless streaming connections than you'd have with standard wireless speakers. With standard wifi speakers, each one needs to communicate wirelessly back to your router itself, which can be much farther away than the nearest speaker. This is one of the reasons that so many are so happy with the reliability of sonos audio.

Here's another benefit of the sonos wireless network: The extra ethernet port on a sonos device provides a solid connection to the Internet and to your home network for any device that can use an ethernet port. Thus, you can extend your wifi network to distant locations in your home (for better laptop internet connections, eg), by plugging a standard inexpensive WiFi access point into the ethernet port on any play5. Also, because of the Mesh network relay system, these sonos ethernet ports can often provide a stronger internet connection for VIDEO streaming devices (like ROKU or AppleTV) than the built-in wi-fi on those devices. My friend and I eliminated all of his video stutter by use of sonos ethernet ports.

The Sonos Network DOES require, however, that at least one sonos device or bridge be connected directly to your Router or LAN.

<> PROTECTED ITUNES TRACKS on sonos

iTunes tracks bought after 2008 are not protected, and WILL work on sonos and other devices. If you have a lot of earlier, protected, iTunes tracks, they can ALL be converted for a one time total fee of $25: Just subscribe to iTunes Match ($25/yr) and apple will upgrade your tracks to unprotected. Apple allows you to keep your upgraded tacks if you later cancel iTunes Match, but the $25 will not be refunded. IMO, that $25 is a nice price for converting a large library to "play anywhere", and independently, you might decide to keep iTunes Match as I have.

<> The SONOS Play:5

Sounds better than my Bose Sound Dock. Looks great. Sets up in seconds, and moves easily between rooms when needed. It can really be cranked up in VOLUME WITHOUT DISTORTION. Perfect.

ADVANTAGES in BUYING A SINGLE Play5 (or Play3) rather than a Bose SoundDock or other docking speaker:

1) CONTROL FROM YOUR SEAT: It's an absolute pleasure to have complete control over what you're listening to, right where you are, keeping your iphone or android in your hand or pocket. You don't have to stand up to choose any specific track, playlist, artist, radio station, internet music service, or to see what's playing. And because your iphone is only the controller (you're streaming from your desktop computer hard disk or from the internet, rather than from your iPhone - unless you choose to, as noted above) you're not using up valuable phone battery life or suffering mediocre sound quality, as you might be otherwise. Further, your phone is still with you for answering phone calls or using other phone apps, with no disruption to the music system.

2) INTERNET RADIO: Sonos probably has the worlds best remote control user interface for internet radio. Listen to Pandora, Rhapsody, Sirius, last.fm, Spotify, all of your local radio stations (local radio is quick to find, given it's independent menu item. A very nice touch.), or about 100 thousand other internet radio stations, organized by location (country, state, city), or searchable by genre, sub-genre, station name, station number, or radio show name.

3) UPGRADABILITY: Add another zone (or multiple additional zones) at any time in the future and you're set with a multizone system. Also, the system will continue to be just as valuable if you change your phone from an iPhone to an Android or vice versa, which would not be the case with a phone docking speaker or an airplay system.

I should point out that there are some benefits in going with a single Docking Speaker instead:

1) Cost Savings.
2) Some might prefer a docking speaker away from home, but the Play5 DOES includes a line-in port and cable that can be used with your phone when away. OR You can use an inexpensive bluetooth adapter with the Play5's line-in. The Sonos phone app won't typically work away from home, but you won't need it. Just make sure to turn on autoplay in the play5's line-in settings before leaving home.

Final Verdict: I really do love my Play:5 and my entire Sonos system.
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131 of 140 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Finally a SONOS in the right price range, November 12, 2013
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
I have been wanting a SONOS product for quite a while but the cost of any of their speakers has been to high for me - until now.

Pros: Setup is incredibly easy, sounds great, easily controlled from any device, can be grouped with other speakers to create zones or whole home listening

Cons: No auxiliary input jack, cannot be used to output sound from other sources on your device (i.e. video sound from your iPhone's video player)

I've been interested in getting a SONOS speaker but I haven't wanted to put down $299 for their base speaker the SONOS PLAY:3 or $399 for their top model the SONOS PLAY:5. It's amazing what $100 will do to your purchasing decisions, because at $199, their latest speaker was worth a try.

When I wasn't prepared to buy a SONOS PLAY:3 for $299, I went with a Philips AD7000W wireless Airplay speaker for $150 (now $99.98 through Amazon). I went with the Philips for a few reasons. First, it was half the price and did virtually the same thing. Secondly, the Philips has an auxiliary input jack. Lastly, I have an iPhone, iPad and MacBook Pro so having an Airplay device appealed to me. And while I think the Philips is a great speaker, overall I am happier with the SONOS PLAY:1.

To start with, I'm not an audiophile at all so when I say the speaker sounds great, that's coming from the ears of an average person who isn't extremely picky about the audio source I listen to. I can tell the difference between extremely expensive speakers and cheap ones, but the stuff in the middle isn't as easily distinguishable to me. Keeping that in mind, I think both speakers sound great and can easily fill any room in my house with quality tunes. The Philips does have more bass to it but the SONOS PLAY:1 does well in this area too. I won't go into how I think the SONOS handles highs, mids and lows, because as I said, I'm not an audiophile so you'll just have to take my layman's word for it when I say it is a good speaker.

I installed the SONOS controlling software on my PC, iPhone, iPad and every other iDevice in the house including my 7 year-old daughter's iPhone 3g (Wi-Fi only). My daughter loves music and singing and when I showed her the app and how to use it, she started sending music to the SONOS immediately and hasn't stopped since. The interface on all of my devices is straight forward and easy to use. I used the controller application on my PC to point the SONOS to the music on my hard drive. I only have one iTunes folder of music but if you have multiple music libraries or file locations, you can add as many as you'd like. I also quickly set up my Pandora account and the local radio settings. There are a plethora of other internet radio services but I only use Pandora so that's the only one I set up. I almost never listen to local radio but my fiancée likes the radio setting that lets you listen to the radio based on your zip code. Although I haven't tried it, I'm guessing you could enter the zip code for any city and start pulling up their local stations which might be of interest to some people.

The SONOS searches your iTunes library file for playlists and automatically imports them to the controller menu. For some reason, each of my playlists is showing up twice and the first of each duplicate is actually a blank list. I can't figure out why or how to get rid of it. I honestly haven't put more than five minutes into trying to fix it so I might just have made a mistake somewhere. You can also create SONOS playlists which could be useful if you were pulling music from many different sources and making combined playlists.

One interesting feature is the queue. Every time you play a song it gets added to your queue and the list builds unless you delete it. So if I'm playing one song and then select another song, I have several options for the second song including play now, play next or add to queue. So I can build a queue or change songs on the fly. I'm kind of a neat freak so I don't like seeing the queue and I clear it out often.

On the top of the unit is the Play/Pause button and volume button. If you're listening to Pandora and want to stop it for any reason, you don't have to pull up an app, you can just physically press the pause button. So when you get back from the grocery store, just press the play button and pick up where you left off.

I really like that I can expand the system and make listening zones as well as a wireless surround system for my living room. It will be expensive to outfit my entire house but in the end it will be worth it. The main difference between any Airplay speaker and SONOS is the ability to play music through multiple speakers. If you're using Airplay through an iDevice, you can send music to only one speaker at a time. So if I'm in my bedroom and then go to the living room and then back again, I have to use my device to change the audio output each time I change rooms. With SONOS, I can start the music and send it to every speaker in the house at the same time so as I'm moving around doing chores, I always have music. If you have AppleTV you can use your phone and an Apple Remote App to send the music to multiple speakers but only music in your iTunes library, not sound from other app sources. You can also use iTunes on a computer to send music to multiple Airplay speakers at the same time but neither option is as easy as SONOS.

One thing I like better about Airplay is that I can send audio from any iDevice app to the speaker. So if I'm sitting in bed and watching YouTube or College Humor on my iDevice, I can send the audio to the Airplay speaker in my bedroom and get much better sound to go with the video. You can't do this with SONOS at all.

My last observation about an Airplay speaker is that you must have an iDevice to use its proprietary wireless abilities. I don't see switching from my iPhone or iPad to other devices, but if I did, my Airplay speakers would become useless to me. If I outfitted my entire home with Airplay speakers, I would be locked in to iDevices or forced to buy all different speakers. With SONOS, that won't ever be an issue.

As far as the auxiliary input goes, I've almost never used it on my Philips speaker. So while it was a factor in my original purchase decision, I now know that it doesn't need to be in most future decisions. I will most likely end up getting the SONOS PLAY:5 for my bedroom so I can plug my TV into it instead of buying a $699 SONOS sound bar.

One thing I've noticed with Airplay that I haven't seen with the SONOS is dropout. It could be my network so I won't automatically blame it on the equipment but I'll still mention it. I run a dual-band router and the Airplay speakers only run on 2.4 Ghz which is what my iPhone 4S runs on. Every other device in my house runs on 5 Ghz including my fiancée's iPhone 5. When she tried to use the Airplay speaker there was a lot of dropout and there hasn't ever been any with my phone. So I set her phone to use the 2.4 Ghz and there has been less dropout from her phone but it isn't completely gone. There is no dropout on the SONOS at all.

One other unique thing about the SONOS is the equipment requirement. Each speaker has a wireless antenna in it but at least one speaker or other SONOS device MUST be hardwired to an Ethernet cable in order for the system or even a singular speaker to work. Most people opt to buy the $49 SONOS Bridge to plug into their system and then set up speakers wirelessly throughout the house. I bought my SONOY PLAY:1 on an Amazon deal of the day where the bridge was bundled for free; this was part of my decision to buy the speaker. I unfortunately did not read the instructions and forgot to add the bridge to my cart, I thought it would be added automatically. A five minute online chat with Amazon corrected my error and they sent me out a free bridge; their support was awesome as usual. I haven't received the bridge yet, it's sitting at my PO Box waiting for me to go get it, so I can't talk about that piece of the puzzle. I do know that if you plan on having a speaker near an Ethernet cable then you don't need the bridge. You could also decide to outfit your home with speakers, make individual purchases of the speakers and get a free bridge with each of them and then sell the extra bridges online for $40 :)

In the end, I love my new speaker and having it has helped me come to the conclusion that I will make SONOS my home speaker system. I will add a couple more PLAY:1 speakers throughout the house and eventually get a sound bar and subwoofer for the living room. I hope that one day they offer a weather resistant model for use on our patio, but the PLAY:1 is small enough that it won't be difficult to move around if we want music outside. In the end, my only two complaints are that I can't send audio to a SONOS speaker through any other apps on my iDevices, and that it doesn't have an auxiliary line in. I would definitely recommend this product to other consumers.
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139 of 154 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars As Advertised!, November 18, 2009
By 
Bob (Atlanta, GA) - See all my reviews
I just purchased the s5 with a zone bridge and the CR200. The combination is absolutely amazing. Installation was easy and operation is intuitive. There is plenty out there on how these things work, so I won't go into details on that. But I do have two observations to share:

1) In addition to the s5, I also picked up a NAS drive so that I could stream my 5000+ track mp3 library. After all, streaming my collection with a touch screen remote was one of the main reason I looked at Sonos in the first place. But, after setting Sonos up I decided to give Napster a try. The Napster/Sonos combination gives you access to 8 million tracks on demand. For example, Napster has over 60 Bob Dylan albums, which is pretty much his whole discography. If you want to sample the latest (obscure) music, Napster also has most of the albums Pitchfork reviewed this week--pretty neat.

So, despite my deep investment in my personal mp3 collection, it only took me a couple of minutes to realize that it was completely obsolete. Deciding between $5/month for a 8 million track library vs. a $200 NAS for my 5000 track library was a no-brainier. The NAS got packed up and sent back; my mp3s are now strictly for iPod use.

2) As an NPR fan, the other great feature I didn't realize Sonos included is the ability to search and play archived NPR shows. From the Splendid Table to Fresh Air, it is all there on demand--awesome.

_____________
Two-year update: This thing is still going strong. We use it everyday to catch up on NPR or listen to the latest releases via Napster. For instance, just yesterday, I read a review of the new Sigur Ros album and 10 seconds after finishing the review, I had the album streaming through my S5 with a few touches of the controller. I also find it extremely useful to be able to listen to non-local radio stations. If we sleep in and want to catch Morning Edition, or get home late and want to catch Marketplace, we just tune into Wyoming Public Radio (we are in Atlanta) and presto. (While the NPR shows are archived, they are usually not accessible until one day after broadcast).

Another note is that I have downloaded the Android App, which works very well. The only slight frustration is that it takes my phone a few minutes to ramp up the WiFi connection. Because of this, I still almost exclusively use the CR200 or my laptop to control the music. I'd say the CR200 is worth the expense in order to have a dedicated controller that always works without delay.
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152 of 169 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars My wife told me to buy more. Nuff said! Get a pair..., October 21, 2013
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
We owned one play:5 ($399) and also have a Connect:Amp paired with two Audioengine P4's (White) in the living room ($499 + $249). Love the sound, but since Sonos stuff is rather pricey I postponed getting more...

When these came out last week, I got a single P:1 "For the kitchen and so we can stop lugging around the bulky P5.". It sounded great. So good actually, that my wife told me to order another one for our master bedroom. When it arrived I paired them to see if that made a real difference. Wow. Equal if not better than the C:Amp/Speaker combo (which ran $750) and much better than the single P:5. So then she insisted we buy another PAIR for the master bedroom. Suggestions of buying more 'gadgets' are a very rare occurrence in this household, I assure you... I think they have a winner on their hands.

They are a little lighter on the bass than the P5. I can hear the difference between a single play:5 and and a single play:1, but as a pair they beat the former by a mile. Like other reviewers, I agree that a line-in would have been awesome to have so I could ditch my PC speakers, but I actually read the description before getting them, so deducting stars for that is nonsensical. It does what it claims to do, and it does it very well. If you need line-in, get a P:5 (though then you'll miss out on awesome stereo) or add a Sonos Connect (not cheap at $349).

Tip: These are humidity resistant (other Sonos speakers are not) and fit perfectly well inside a gallon-sized ziploc bag, so on a day with a slight chance of rain you can just zip em up with some silica gel packs tossed in for good measure and take them outside for a BBQ.

PS any tips on how to convince my wife that we desperately need a Sonos Sub are welcome. Perhaps I should just grow a pair...
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137 of 156 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Compact size, easy setup, big sound, October 14, 2013
The wife and I were looking for a way to easily access our music library in our bedroom without sacrificing sound quality. We already have Sonos products in our household so adding to the existing system seemed like a great option. Up until now there hasn't been a Sonos solution that is 1) affordable (I.e. less than $200) and 2) compact enough to fit on a nightstand. Enter the Sonos PLAY:1 speaker.

Look/Feel: The PLAY:1 form factor is solid and the unit feels very well built. It is quite heavy at just over 4-lbs. It has a smooth rounded edge design that takes up about half the space of a PLAY:3. It can only be used in the vertical position where is stands roughly 6.5" tall. I've added a couple photos under "Customer Images" of the PLAY:1 and PLAY:3 side-by-side for reference. You can see in the photos how compact and sleek it is in comparison.

Connections: Power connects at the bottom with a nice recessed cord and an Ethernet port in positioned in the back--required if you do not have the wireless Sonos BRIDGE. A flat Ethernet cable is also included.

Easy Setup: I already have a wireless BRIDGE installed so setup was very simple. Choose "Add a Sonos Component" from the Manage tab in the software. Press the "+" and "Play/Pause" buttons simultaneously on the top of the PLAY:1 and the speaker will be recognized by the software/system. Pick a new room or add it to an existing one and you are ready to rock.

Solid Results: The PLAY:1 delivers full, powerful sound that is surprisingly "larger" than you would expect from such a compact form factor. It produces sound that fills the room while staying clean and very detailed at all volume levels. I'm seriously impressed with the output.

Settings: Bass, Treble, and Loudness settings are available in the software to help you get the sound just right. You can also add a second PLAY:1 to run them as a stereo pair. Lastly and thankfully, you can turn off the annoying white Status light in the settings.

Cons: My only con (applies to all Sonos products) is the lack of a dedicated Windows Phone and/or RT applications. We have an iPad but also a Nokia Lumia and Surface RT in the household. Having software available for these Windows devices would offer up a lot more control flexibility.

All-in, I am very happy with this product and most importantly the wife approves 100%. Evident by the fact she was browsing and streaming our Amazon Cloud Player library from the iPad within minutes of me setting up the PLAY:1 in the bedroom. Mission accomplished!
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146 of 167 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Genius...Pure Genius!, November 6, 2009
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
Just got the S5 about an hour ago. Setup couldn't be easier. Step 1 - connect the power cord to an power outlet. Step 2 - hit the Mute and + button to get the S5 added as a new zone, Step 3 - hmmm....I don't think there is one. Just hit play and enjoy pure bliss.

This is my 4th Zone player (see my other gushing review of the Sonos system on the Sonos bundle page), and anytime my wife asks, "how many of these white boxes you really need?", the answer is always "one more".

Portability is the key feature of S5. Moving it from Kitchen to backdeck is just a matter of unplugging the power cord and replugging at the new location. It's all in one box. And the sound quality is not bad either. With all 4 zone players on party mode - some connected to very expensive Klipsch towers - I have ran around to compare the sound quality at various locations. The verdict - this little guy stacks up nicely against the big boys.

And the iPhone controller is not too shabby either. Don't see the need to buy the new touch controller (CR200).

Awesome product. Pure genius. Just get it.
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244 of 282 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Not even close to Sonos 5 (play:5), September 10, 2011
I had 3 Sonos 5's (now called the play:5) and I wanted to add 4th. The play:3 came out so I decided to save the $100 or so and go for the play:3 after reading all the reviews of it. I had the unit exactly 30 minutes before deciding to return it. It's not even close to the 5's. Volume is control is jumpy, not linear like the 5's, power is about half of 5's and once the volume is over 50% the sound starts to get real tinny.

Bottom line is if you don't have anything to compare the play:3 against you may be perfectly happy with it, but if you have any 5's in the mix you will be disappointed. I'm a huge fan of sonos but the play:3 just doesn't cut it and is way too expensive for the sound quality.
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109 of 125 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Easy set up and works like a charm., July 23, 2011
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
We were looking for something that would allow us to play music remotely with the ability to change music without having to get up every time we wanted to hear something different. Normally we have a Tivoli radio in the kitchen for FM and we also hook an ipod touch up to it for Pandora. Not the most convenient thing to do to have to find the ipod and cable and sometimes the FM stations were hard to get it clearly. We just got the Sonos Play 3 yesterday and I have got to say we are blown away by the convenience, ease of setup and sound quality.

Keep in mind you have to buy the Sonos Bridge if you want to use it wirelessly. I also bought the bridge and hooked it up to our router. I put in the setup cd and everything was running smoothly in less than 10 minutes. Easiest setup for a gadget in a long time. I then downloaded the Sonos Ipad app, then signed in to my Spotify and Pandora accounts and I was streaming effortlessly in 5 minutes. Controlling the songs from the Sonos software was really easy and I could change songs and even change the volume easily. Overall I am so impressed with the Sonos Play 3 we are going to get another for our nursery. I am a gadget geek and this is the most impressed I have been with a gadget in a very long time. Highly recommended.

Update: I have ordered another Play 3 in white for our nursery and expect delivery this week. Once it arrives and I have set it up and tested it I will update this review with thoughts on how a multiple zone speaker set up works.

Update 2 August 17: We have had the additional Play 3 speaker in the nursery for over two weeks and it works like a charm. I mainly use the Ipad app to control the speakers while at home and it is really easy to switch between the two speakers/zones and make seperate playlists, control volume seperately, etc. It could not be easier. Also, I now have added the Sirius/XM service and I can stream any of those channels with ease. I can be playing NFL Radio down in the living room while the nursery has classical music playing and it all goes off without a hitch. VERY happy.

Update 3 January 10, 2013: I have now had the Play 3 speaker for almost 1.5yrs. It still sounds just as good as the day I got it and I have not had a single problem. We run the software on our macbook air, iphones, ipads, android phone and android tablet. It has run flawlessly from all sources and the software has been solid as a rock. If you have the money this is the one to get. I recommend this to all my friends and family looking for a wireless audio solution. It is that awesome.
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84 of 96 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Now That Is A Lot Of Sound Coming From Such A Small Package (Play 1) - Easy Music Is Back In My Life, April 7, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
I have been a Sonos user for over four years now but this is the first time I purchased some of their speakers. I had the connect unit going into either stand alone Bose unit in living room that then ran into a whole house hard wired Russound system that cost way too much, or yamaha and polk audio towers. The speakers in that system for each room with a controller ran more for each room than getting a play 1 or 2. It was a major butt pain running all the ethernet in walls and I vowed if I ever moved that was never happening again,
Well the move has happened and now it was time to do a new system, an easy system, and a cheaper system without compromising on sound quality.

There are ways of running your system with varous components that will get you audiophile quality with the sonos as your backbone, but that is way too much money and more effort and suffering than I care to go through.

Ok now to the meat of the Play 1. I am sitting right now in a 25 x 30 room with one Play 1 going and it sounds great, I dont care who you are you will be surprised at the sound pumping out of this little yet heavy box. For the best results in rooms this size and larger you might want to get two and pair them for stereo with the sonos app. I tried this and its easy. Ended up moving the other Play 1 into another room as I am not going to crank music to move the earth much anymore. My purpose was for constant background quality sound and if a good song came on to pump it up without issue, and not to scare wildlife.

If you are a sound snob, and you know who you are, you can find some lacking highs at high volume and a tad of missing clarity in the midrange. I dont say this to warn anyone off this speaker its just not $800. This system is easy and the sound is very good and very impressive, not awe inspiring. Music for me has changed and for many it has as well.

I had found myself just not wanting to go throught the effort anymore of turning on amplifiers, receivers, hititng remotes to find the content and switch on rooms, adjusting settings,,,,,
By the time I got done with all that I didnt want to listen to anything anymore, and had forgotten the song I wanted to hear anyway. It was a pain that was causing a lack of music in my life. I did not like the lack, but what the heck was I going to do about it as options were limited to non existent.

So now i have a herd of Play 1's all over the place. I am thinking of breeding them to get more. A Sonos Rancher. Riding a horse in the pastures with little Soni following me and playing music everywhere. The music is now back. Its easy, convenient and comprehensive in content. I just run the Sonos system from my ipad or iPhone and move about. You can play fiferent music source in each room at any volume level or hit whole house and roam at will with your tunes. Sonos integrates well with streaming servies and I have found myself using Pandora the most. Slacker works well and I have used Spotify which was my go to for on specific on demand artists, but Spotify wont cooperate with Sonos to make finding your Spotify radio just playlists so that kind of sucks.

The Play 1's are sealed against dust, dirt and moisture / humidity so the outdoors and bath are now no problem. The range of the units are phenomenal. Sonos uses a special wifi thing. Yeah thats as tech as I am going to get on this review. It works and I am happy. I have some Play 1's 40 feet from main connect unit, and some well over 50 feet with concrete block walls.

Is it perfect? No. But good music all the time anywhere you are at a button touch is better than what I had, which was no music because it was too much damn trouble. Those days are gone. It is so good I wonder why Apple has not bought them up.

I have listened to all the Play speakers. The Play 3 has a tad better sound, and the 5 is a tad better sound than the 3. I dont think I am ever going to get the others though. The 1's are so cute and non obtrusive and the look on everyones face as they try to find where the big sound in a room is coming from is entertaining. "That little thing is the speaker? Yes it is. Where are the others? There arent any. You gotta be ****** me? No, thats it"

If you need bigger sound you have the option of the other bigger speakers, or just double up in a room with the Play 1's and move on musically content with your life.

UPDATE: 5/24/2014'. Had a chance to live with these speakers for over a month now and I am more impressed than ever. Getting ready to buy another one for the kitchen. One neat thing is that you can unplug a play1 and take it to any room or outside, plug it into electrical outlet and play music without having to change any settings.
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