Best Multi-Room Speakers 2017: Sonos and other brilliant alternatives

Looking for the perfect multi-room speaker system? We’ve narrowed it down to five great multi-room options for every kind of household and budget.

Sonos is no longer the only audio giant on a mission to dominate your house one room at a time. Samsung, Bose and a few lesser-known names are getting in on the multi-room act, and the wider choice means a multi-room system is more affordable than ever.

There’s a lot more flexibility with setup these days too, with Sonos and others ditching the old-fangled hub – a device you had to plug into your router to create a wireless network for your fleet of speakers. None of the multi-room systems in our round-up require a hub; you simply download an app to connect the speakers to your home network. Most will stream via Bluetooth too.

Related: 18 Best Soundbars For Your TV Round-Up

All of the multi-room speakers in our round-up are compatible with both iOS and Android devices, but it’s important to make sure the system you choose can stream the right content. Some speakers will happily stream from any music app you like, while others are limited to key services like Spotify, Deezer and Napster.

The beauty of a multi-room system is that you can build on it over time. If your dream of Sonos heaven is stifled by your budget, you can always invest in just a couple of speakers to begin with and then add more later.

If you’re too impatient to wait, you might want to consider some of the cheaper setups on the market. The Jam Smart Sound multi-room system offers a punchy little speaker called Jam Rhythm, available for a neat £80. You can add its more costly sibling Jam Symphony later on if you find yourself with a little more cash to throw at some room-shaking bass.

Of course, it’s never going to be cheap bringing the audio cavalry into your house, but there’s a system here for everyone. You can start browsing our favourite multi-room speakers below. Alternatively, head to our Best Bluetooth Speaker 2017 Round-Up if you’re after that one winning speaker.

Sonos

1 of 5

Key features:

  • Stream from over 30 services, including Deezer, Spotify and Stitcher
  • Play: 5 and Play: 3 speakers can play stereo
  • Play:5 has Line In support

The daddy of the multi-room speaker setups, Sonos offers a great variety of speaker options. There’s even a soundbar in the mix, the Sonos Playbar, which lets your TV join in on the fun.

You can directly connect Sonos speakers to your home network quickly and easily. If your Wi-Fi signal is weak, you can plug speakers directly into your router via an ethernet cable, or alternatively, grab a handy device called Sonos Boost. Like the Pure Jongo system, there’s also the option to transform wired speakers or a home theatre setup into a music streaming system via the additional Sonos Connect hardware.

You can run music from your computer, but the best source of control is the Sonos app, available for both Android and iOS. Its clean, fresh interface and universal search function makes it super-easy to find the music you love.

With one of the most comprehensive apps and a growing army of compatible speakers, Sonos is still one of the best multi-room setups to invest in, and it’s affordable – despite a slight post-Brexit price increase across the entire range.

Prices: Play: 1 (£199), Play: 3 (£299), Play: 5 (£499), Playbar (£699), Sub (£699), Connect: Amp (£499), Connect (£349), Boost (£99)

MORE: Sonos Play: 1 review

Pure Jongo

2 of 5

Key features:

  • Music streaming from any app
  • Stream over Wi-Fi and Bluetooth
  • Stream directly to Hi-Fi

The trio of Pure Jongo multi-room speakers looks just as sleek and sophisticated as Sonos, and is a versatile option if you’re working with a smaller budget.

There are currently three different size speakers in the Jongo family, and you can stream music over Wi-Fi and Bluetooth from any music app or streaming service you fancy. There’s a Pure Connect app for setting up the speakers, which you can also use to play your own music, and discover radio and on-demand content too.

In terms of arranging a full setup with access to an unlimited range of music apps, this is definitely the one that offers the best value for money.

Prices: T2 speaker (£99.99), T4 speaker (£149.99), T6 speaker (£199.99)

Related: Pure Jongo T6 review

Samsung Shape

3 of 5

Key features:

  • 360-degree speakers in the range
  • Bluetooth
  • M7 speaker can be positioned horizontally and vertically

Currently boasting a lively crowd of six different speakers, Samsung’s multi-room alternative to Sonos is wide-ranging and versatile. The big beast of the family, the M7, can deliver clear, enjoyable sound and weighty bass performance.

The entire system is controlled via the Samsung Multiroom smartphone and tablet app, and the streaming magic happens over Bluetooth and Wi-Fi. Spotify, Deezer, Napster and the usual fare of apps is supported.

The M7 is triangular in shape, allowing it to be positioned both vertically or horizontally depending on how you like it. The rest of the R-series speakers in the range deliver omni-directional sound, and come in various orb shapes to deliver that 360-degree punch.

It’s a piece of cake getting a fleet of Samsung Shape speakers singing in harmony throughout your house, and Samsung even offers a device called the WAM-270 Link Mate to bring your TV in on the rich sound action.

Prices: M7 (£330), R1 (£149), R3 (£250), R5 (£302), R6 (£299), R7 (£379)

Related: Samsung Shape M7 review

Bose SoundTouch

4 of 5

Key features:

  • Wi-Fi and Bluetooth
  • Free controller app
  • Six preset streaming buttons

Best known for its noise cancelling headphones, Bose has delivered a high-performing collection of multi-room speakers in its SoundTouch range. The system offers multi-room audio streaming via Wi-Fi or Bluetooth from a smartphone, tablet or computer.

There are three speaker models in the SoundTouch family, all of which can deliver content from your iPhone, iPad or iPod Touch. The free SoundTouch app is available on both Android and iOS devices for remote control around the house.

One neat little feature is an array of six preset buttons on each speaker in the range, allowing you to jump directly to your favourite internet radio stations or playlists with a single press. You can quickly set up and change your favourite go-to stations using the app.

Prices: SoundTouch 10 (£169.95), SoundTouch 20 (£279.95), Soundtouch 30 (£429.95), SoundTouch SA-5 amplifier (£369.95)

Related: Bose SoundTouch 30 Review

Jam Smart Sound

5 of 5

Key features:

  • Two Wi-Fi speakers
  • Spotify, Tidal, tunein and more
  • Jam Home audio app

The Jam Smart Sound multi-room system features two speakers for round-the-house fun: Jam Rhythm and Jam Symphony. The mid-sized Jam Rhythm is better suited to kitchens, bedrooms and offices, while Jam Symphony brings booming bass to larger spaces for double the price.

While Jam’s offering has less variety than some of the big multi-room families in this round-up, it comes with the perk of being the most affordable, starting at just £80 for the Rhythm.

Control is via Jam’s app, available for both iOS and Android, and there’s also an intercom feature in case you need to announce home time to your party guests through your multi-room setup, Big Brother-style.

Prices: Jam Rhythm (£80), Jam Symphony (£169.99)

Related: Jam Rhythm Review

Related: Jam Symphony Review

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