HomeBlogREVIEWSonos Ray evaluate: Small dimension, massive sound

Sonos Ray evaluate: Small dimension, massive sound

Suppose soundbar and one thing the scale and form of the Sonos Ray might be not what instantly springs to thoughts. You’re in all probability imagining a protracted, slim bar that runs the complete width of your TV, maybe accompanied by a cumbersome subwoofer.

However, when you’re available in the market for a speaker to enhance your TV’s audio output and also you don’t wish to eviscerate your checking account – or litter your bijou front room – it’s positively value contemplating. For its dimension, it’s the most effective soundbar we’ve ever laid ears on.

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Sonos Ray evaluate: What do you get for the cash?

The Sonos Ray is the most cost effective soundbar within the Sonos vary at £279 and it’s additionally the smallest, measuring a mere 559 x 95 x 71mm (WDH) and weighing slightly below 2kg. It’s properly made, too, with Sonos’ signature minimalist design ethos to the fore. The Ray’s diminutive dimension means there’s no show and controls are restricted to a few contact buttons on the highest panel of the gadget, however there’s no denying that it appears to be like excellent.

Bells and whistles elsewhere are stored to a minimal, too. Audio inputs are restricted to a single optical connection, there’s no microphone, so it isn’t doable to regulate it straight along with your voice as you possibly can with different Sonos soundbars, and Sonos doesn’t even provide a distant management.

Nonetheless, you do get Wi-Fi connectivity so you possibly can stream music to the Ray straight out of your smartphone. You possibly can add the speaker to an present Sonos multi-room setup as effectively.

The Ray additionally advantages from Sonos’ TruePlay know-how, which lets you tune the speaker to the room it’s located in, to keep away from room results like over-boomy bass. When you’ve related the Ray to your TV, you merely wander round your front room waving your telephone within the air whereas the Ray performs a collection of check tones. As soon as that’s achieved, the app units up the EQ for probably the most balanced sound.

Similar to the costlier Sonos Beam and Arc soundbars, you can even improve the Ray at a later date by including a few Sonos One models as left and proper rear audio system (and a Sonos Sub when you’re feeling notably flush) for a encompass sound setup.

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Sonos Ray evaluate: What does it do effectively?

When it comes to {hardware}, the Ray isn’t fairly as much as the extent of the costlier Sonos Beam however Sonos has clearly put loads of thought into the design. Inside are 4 speaker drivers, each backed by its personal Class D digital amplifier. Two of those are mid-woofers, each front-ported, and there are vanes contained in the ports to cut back the impact of turbulence on the sound high quality. There are additionally twin front-facing tweeters, every of which has a break up wave-guide sat in entrance of it to unfold the sound round your room and provides it a way of width.

This setup works beautifully effectively; put merely, for a soundbar of this dimension, it’s nothing wanting phenomenal. There’s extra bass than one thing this tiny has any proper to supply, mids are fleshed out and balanced and audio is evident and crisp within the higher registers, too. There’s even good instrument and voice separation, whereas the soundstage is uncannily vast – little question due to these two wave-guides.

I did discover the odd TV present and film the place I felt the dialogue lacked somewhat coherence however you possibly can repair that simply sufficient by enabling Speech mode within the Sonos app. And, most significantly, I by no means had any points with lipsync – an issue I’ve skilled with HDMI-only soundbars just like the Sonos Arc prior to now.

Even the dearth of distant management wasn’t a problem as you possibly can regulate the amount along with your TV’s infrared distant, or tweak it utilizing the app. In case your TV doesn’t use an infrared distant, you possibly can have the Ray study the indicators from every other IR distant you may have mendacity round. I ended up setting it up to make use of the amount management on my Apple TV distant as each my Sky Q and Samsung TV zappers are Bluetooth primarily based.

READ NEXT: These are the most effective soundbars to purchase proper now

Sonos Ray evaluate: What may it do higher?

Clearly, the Ray’s restricted bodily connectivity isn’t good at any value and the truth that it’s optical-only means there’s no help for higher-end audio codecs, corresponding to Dolby Atmos or DTS:X. It’s additionally somewhat disappointing that there’s no microphone for voice management or a distant provided within the field.

Nonetheless, I’d argue that none of those points are deal breakers, particularly not contemplating how good the Sonos Ray sounds.

The dimensions of the Ray additionally signifies that it isn’t able to shaking the room with rumbling explosions or throbbing bass. In order for you that, there are many merchandise that can serve you higher than the Sonos Ray – the Polk Magnifi Mini, as an example, or the Sharp HT-SBW460.

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Sonos Ray evaluate: Must you purchase one?

Nonetheless, when you’re searching for a neat, one-box answer to your TV audio woes and don’t need a hulking nice soundbar and subwoofer so as to add to your front room setup, there’s lots to be stated for the Sonos Ray.

It’s small and neat, appears to be like elegant and sounds amazingly good for its dimension, plus it’s upgradeable additional down the monitor if you find yourself hankering after encompass sound. Don’t be delay by its dimension: at this value, the Sonos Ray is without doubt one of the finest soundbars round.

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