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Best Wireless Speakers: Sonos and other multi-room alternatives

Michael Sawh

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Best wireless speakers

A quick look at the best wireless speaker systems, including Sonos and the best alternatives to Sonos currently available.

Sonos is no longer the only multi-room speaker solution available. But while there are hundreds of 'wireless speakers' out there, if you want a setup to dot around the house and stream music direct from your smartphone or computer without trailing wires everywhere, there aren't as many options.

The good news is that the likes of Samsung, Bose and Panasonic and smaller less known companies like British-based company Musaic are getting in on the multi-room act. Most offer streaming over Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and Apple Airplay, liberating the iTunes music from your iPad or iPhone.

Whether you want something that's compatible with Android or iOS or something that doesn't require extra hardware to get it on the network, we've picked out the best wireless speaker systems to get you started.

Weehaaw

June 3, 2014, 9:36 am

Would still pick sonos any day of the week.

Alex Walsh

June 3, 2014, 9:36 am

The number of outages of Spotify on the SONOS network is increasing and is getting more and more irritating.

Prem Desai

June 3, 2014, 10:30 am

It's good to see other manufacturers join the wireless / multi-room bandwagon. Competition is always good.

Why Sonos does it for me is they've managed to combine ease of use, reliability and flexibility together. I do not know of a bad Sonos product yet - I own at least one of everything they make.

The other very important thing about Sonos is that this is all they do. Their existence depends on their products. Other manufacturers like Bose, Logitech, Denon, etc have their fingers in many pies - the moment they get bored or face any challenges, they could pull out or reduce any effort to this market.

sjmleicester

June 3, 2014, 12:17 pm

Sonos is excellent kit. Expensive but well made, simple to use and properly supported.
Would definitely recommend.

A. Mir

June 3, 2014, 12:36 pm

You forgot to mention Denon's new HEOS range which is quite interesting.

freemangeoff3

June 3, 2014, 1:18 pm

for some reason I thought
sonos was going to be higher on the list.

Prem Desai

June 4, 2014, 12:24 am

The reviewer has already called it 'the daddy' and 'the best' ...

How much higher were you expecting?

Richard Jones

September 3, 2014, 9:17 pm

Did you look at the Spaced360. Amazing.

Daz71

October 10, 2014, 12:23 pm

I've experienced this a lot in the UK. Have resorted to individual bluetooth speakers and using phones/tablets for the source. Having all the music around they house synchronized is not really worth the cost of a system like the Sonos in our house at least.

Nevalti

June 9, 2015, 7:35 am

A year ago I would have agreed with you BUT Sonos kit is unable to play the BBC HLS streams. That means that for the last 6 months we have only had the pretty useless quality, temporary and intermittent MP3 streams from the BBC. Sonos simply refuse to say IF and when they will ever support the BBC HLS streams. That renders the whole system almost useless to me. Also, the system is incapable of hi-res music.

Yes, it is good equipment but we are now suffering from the old age of its design.

Nevalti

June 9, 2015, 7:37 am

Agreed - As long as you don't want to listen to any BBC station or to hi-res music.

Congruent Thoughts

June 21, 2015, 1:39 pm

Like mentioned by Alex: 'The number of outages of Spotify on the SONOS network is increasing and is getting more and more irritating'. Yes - this is the most irritating part! We relay on the Spotify Playlists when preparing something important for the next day. When sudden outages occur when we most need it, and some real stupid and dumb reauthorize demands are showing up two minutes before we really need the music, There i can throw the whole Sonos System out of the Window in pure frustration. I have bought the Sonos speakers and they are mine, I also pay fully for the Spotify service and do not need all this suspicious crab around our system. So Alternatives are highly welcome.

If Sonos is not able to deliver a stable system - we must find stable systems in Asia.
I support Sonos as long as I feel supported by them.
This are the rules...

Craig Jacobs

June 28, 2015, 9:27 pm

For me one of the most important things is the software to organize and play music, both on the computer and mobile devices, and the flexibility of where music will be stored. I've been fighting with iTunes for the last few years and this is a primary driver for me - under no circumstances will iTunes or Airplay be any part of the equation for a new music system. I would really like ro see a comprehensive review of the software for these things. The one thing that is holding me back from Sonos is the seemingly excessive pricing. For example I have a nice (very nice) pair of powered speakers that I would like to use. With Sonos I will need to pay $350 for that privilege. That borders on the realm of ridiculous, especially since the Play 1 is only $200 and contains not only the electronics to stream the music, but also two drivers and 2 class-D amplifiers. Came here looking for alternatives, left disappointed.

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