‘Premium Sound’: Sonos Ray Soundbar Review

There is a new and compact soundbar on the market that will deliver premium sound at a reasonable price.

Gamers, movie buffs and binge watchers alike – there is a new and compact soundbar on the market that delivers first-class sound at a reasonable price. Let’s take a look at the recently launched Sonos Ray Soundbar.

unpacking

The Sonos Ray comes in a sleek yet simple package. Inside the box you’ll find the Ray packed in a material sleeve, along with an optical cable, power cord and easy set up instructions. It’s not completely plug-and-play, as you’ll need to download the free Sonos app to set it up and connect it to your TV or display. This may sound complicated, but even my father was able to track it with the app on his nine-year-old iPhone 5S. With our heads together, we were amazed at how quickly we could sync things up.

App Control

The app will ask you to create an account and connect the Ray to your home Wi-Fi network. I assume they’ve turned it into an app product so it can be app controlled from your phone, but also so you can sync playback with other Sonos products in your house – just in case you have your music on multiple devices. places you want to play . Yes, it can be used as a speaker for music, not just an amplifier for your TV.

In the app, you can link your music streaming accounts to play music, podcasts and radio stations. It also allows you to control the volume of your Ray from your phone, although you can also set it up to control it via your TV remote. There is also the option to adjust the EQ of the soundbar.

Sound quality

Out of the box, plugged in with just an optical cable and to the power supply, the sound quality was definitely more impressive than our TV’s internal speakers. Though heads up, it’s important to check if your TV has an optical audio port before using this soundbar. While this is quite common, many soundbar technology are moving to HDMI connections for greater compatibility with Dolby Atmos and DTS Master Audio, which optical cables don’t typically support.

I first tried out the Ray with a few Netflix movies and was immediately shocked at its ability to fill the room with sound.

There was definitely an improved bass and nuance in a movie’s audio quality, as opposed to a very flat sounding audio profile from the TV’s speakers.

My dad also had a surround sound, multi-speaker setup including a sub that we compared it to. While the Ray couldn’t compete as well with a multi-speaker setup in the room, it did a surprisingly good job of mimicking a surround-sound setup. The current multi-speaker setup also has a spaghetti tangle of wires behind the TV that really lets the look down, so we liked the alternative of switching to a single soundbar. Side note, the Ray is compatible with a subwoofer and rear surround speakers, so this could be the start of a whole new sound system setup in the family home – hopefully with better cable management.

Compact SoundBar

Best of all, the soundbar is so compact that it can easily fit under the TV and even between the round stand that our particular TV has.

Measuring 559mm wide, 95mm deep and 71mm high, it is certainly one of the smaller soundbars on the market. I feel that this soundbar is perfect for people who want a simple setup or who only have a small space. This would almost certainly fit in anyone’s TV cabinet or on a desk under a monitor for a gaming setup. And if you’re using it at a desk, there are capacitive controls (touch controls) on the top that you can use to quickly pause, play, or mute content, increase or decrease the volume, and skip songs forward and back. to beat.

Is it worth it?

Sure, this isn’t the cheapest soundbar I’ve seen and there are even a few cheaper options on the market that come with an extra subwoofer. But this is what I’d recommend if, again, you’re short on space but want a hassle-free setup to give you louder, clearer, bassier sound. The audio quality is impressive and it’s a great all-in-one from a reputable brand. Not only that, you can always add more Sonos products and sync with the Ray to expand your setup and sound system throughout your home.

The Sons Ray is out now and available in black and white for $399.

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