Sonos Beam Soundbar Review

Tested using Methodology v1.0
Updated Mar 17, 2021 at 09:07 am
Sonos Beam Picture
7.2
Mixed Usage
7.9
Dialogue/TV Shows
7.5
Music
6.4
Movies
This soundbar was replaced by the Sonos Beam (Gen 2)
Channels
3.0

The Sonos Beam is a 3.0 soundbar with a compact design. Out-of-the-box, its sound profile is slightly bright, but it's still quite balanced, making it well suited for listening to most types of audio content. Although it lacks some low-bass, you can improve its bass performance by adding its separate wireless subwoofer, which is sold separately. It can get fairly loud, but there's a bit of compression present at max volume. Its connectivity options are also quite limited, which may disappoint some users. However, this soundbar's side-firing speakers create a wide soundstage that helps immerse you in your audio.

Our Verdict

7.2 Mixed Usage

The Sonos Beam is decent for mixed usage. It has a slightly bright sound profile that's still quite well balanced, making it suitable for listening to vocal-centric content like podcasts or TV shows. However, it struggles to produce a deep, thumpy low-bass. Also, its surround channel performance is poor, and it doesn't support height channels. Luckily, the side-firing speakers help to create a wide soundstage that can give you a more immersive listening experience. It can also get loud enough for most types of audio content, though there's some compression at max volume.

Pros
  • Very well-built design.
  • Easily upgradable setup.
Cons
  • No DTS or Atmos support.
  • No Full HDMI In ports.
7.9 Dialogue/TV Shows

The Sonos Beam is great for dialogue and TV shows. It has a fairly neutral sound profile that's well suited for vocal-centric content like podcasts or audiobooks. However, sibilants like S and T sounds may be perceived as sharp or piercing due to its overemphasized treble range. It can get pretty loud, and its dialogue enhancement feature can improve the clarity of voices in your audio. You can even wirelessly stream content from your mobile devices over Wi-Fi.

Pros
  • Well-balanced sound profile.
  • Great center channel performance for dialogue in movies.
Cons
  • Poor surrounds performance.
7.5 Music

The Sonos Beam is good for music. This soundbar's fairly neutral sound profile is slightly bright but should be suitable for most genres of music. However, if you don't have it set up with its separate subwoofer, the soundbar struggles to produce a deep thump and rumble, which may disappoint fans of bass-heavy genres like EDM and hip-hop. Thankfully, there's a room correction feature and bass and treble adjustments that you can use to tweak its sound profile, and it can get quite loud.

Pros
  • Well-balanced sound profile.
  • Wide soundstage.
Cons
  • Lacks sub-bass.
6.4 Movies

The Sonos Beam is unremarkable for movies. While it has a fairly neutral sound profile, it lacks low-bass. It also doesn't have height channels or Atmos content support. However, it has a wide soundstage thanks to its side-firing speakers, which can give you a more immersive movie experience. This soundbar can get loud, but it has some compression artifacts in the bass range if you push it to its max volume.

Pros
  • Well-balanced sound profile.
  • Great center channel performance for dialogue in movies.
  • Wide soundstage.
Cons
  • Lacks sub-bass.
  • Poor surrounds performance.
  • 7.2 Mixed Usage
  • 7.9 Dialogue/TV Shows
  • 7.5 Music
  • 6.4 Movies
  1. Updated Feb 09, 2021: Updated 'App' box, as the soundbar has a new companion app.
  2. Updated Feb 09, 2021: Converted to Test Bench 1.0.
  3. Updated Jun 30, 2020: We've updated some test results for consistency across reviews. No major score changes happened.
  4. Updated Sep 27, 2019: Review published.

Video

Test Results

perceptual testing image
Market Context
Market Context
Market Context

The Sonos Beam is a high-end and customizable soundbar setup from 2018. It's more compact than the older Sonos Playbar, and it's one of the smallest soundbars we've tested. As a standalone, it can be comparable to the Sonos Play 5 speaker. The Sonos Beam also competes with full system setups like the Sonos Playbar, the Bose Soundbar 500 full setup, and the Samsung HW-N950.

Design
Design
Style - Bar

The Sonos Beam's soundbar has a fairly plain design, mostly made of solid plastic. A mesh-like fabric cover surrounds the whole bar, which can get dirty or tear. On top of the bar, there are three touch-sensitive buttons.

Design
Style - Subwoofer

This setup doesn't include a subwoofer. However, you can purchase a separate subwoofer to upgrade your setup.

Design
Style - Satellites

This setup doesn't have any satellites, but you can upgrade your setup with additional satellites.

Design
Dimensions - Bar
Width 25.6" (65.0 cm)
Height 2.6" (6.7 cm)
Depth 4.0" (10.1 cm)

The Sonos Beam is fairly compact and should fit between the legs of most 55 inch TVs. It's also not very tall, so it doesn't obstruct your view of the TV unless your TV is flush to the table, like the Sony A9G OLED, or if it has a low stand.

Design
Dimensions - Subwoofer
Width N/A
Height N/A
Depth N/A
Design
Dimensions - Satellites
Width N/A
Height N/A
Depth N/A
Design
Back - Bar
Bar Mounting
Proprietary

The back of the bar has one opening for the power cable and the inputs. If you want to wall-mount it, you have to buy special wall-mounting brackets. The proprietary wall-mounting holes are found under the bar.

Design
Back - Subwoofer
Enclosure
No Subwoofer
Design
Back - Satellites
Mounting
No
8.0
Design
Build Quality

The Sonos Beam has a great build quality. Although it has a plasticky build, it still feels very robust and solid. However, its fabric covering is prone to rips and getting dirty.

Design
In The Box
HDMI Cable Length
1.5 m (4.9 ft)
Digital Optical Cable Length
N/A

  • Manuals
  • Bar power cable
  • HDMI cable
  • HDMI to Optical converter
  • Driver CDs

Sound
7.3
Sound
Stereo Frequency Response
Tested Preset
No Preset
Slope
0.37
Std. Err.
2.04 dB
Low-Frequency Extension
53.4 Hz
High-Frequency Extension
15.6 kHz

The Sonos Beam's stereo frequency response is decent. Its sound profile is fairly well-balanced, producing a neutral sound with a touch of brightness. However, as a standalone bar, it has some trouble producing deep thump and rumbles when it's not being used with its separate subwoofer.

Note: This soundbar was tested with the bar only, but we plan to test it with a full setup (sub and satellites) in the future.

7.6
Sound
Stereo Frequency Response With Preliminary Calibration
Suggested Preset
No Preset
Suggested Bass Setting
1
Suggested Treble Setting
-3
Slope
0.05
Std. Err.
1.93 dB
Low-Frequency Extension
50.4 Hz
High-Frequency Extension
19.9 kHz

The Sonos Beam comes with bass and treble adjustments in its companion app. With the bass set to +1 and the treble set to -3, it has a good stereo frequency response. Although it still struggles to produce a thumpy low-bass, its sound profile is more neutral, making it suitable for a variety of audio content.

8.0
Sound
Stereo Soundstage
Crosstalk Error
1.81 dB

This soundbar has a great soundstage. Its side-firing speakers work together with its center channel speaker to produce a soundstage that feels almost as wide as home theater speaker towers. However, you can't disable this setup, and while this soundstage widening effect works well, it feels like the sound is coming from a general area rather than a specific location. If you're looking for a soundbar with a wider soundstage, check out the Bose Soundbar 700.

7.3
Sound
Stereo Dynamics
SPL @ Max Volume
94.1 dB SPL
DRC @ Max Volume
2.78 dB

This soundbar can get quite loud, which is great for use in large rooms. However, there are some compression artifacts present at max volume, especially in the bass range.

7.7
Sound
Stereo Total Harmonic Distortion
Weighted THD @ 80dB
0.48
Weighted THD @ Max Volume
1.17

This soundbar's THD performance is good. At a normal listening volume, there isn't much distortion present, resulting in a clear and pure sound. There also isn't a big increase in distortion at max volume.

8.7
Sound
Center
Localization
Discrete
Slope
0.36
Std. Err.
1.99 dB
SPL @ Max Volume
94.3 dB SPL
Weighted THD @ 80dB
0.72
Weighted THD @ Max Volume
1.16

This soundbar is a 3.0 setup with an excellent center channel performance. It has a dedicated center speaker that helps reproduce dialogue clearly and accurately. Its balanced mid-range also makes dialogue sound present in the mix.

3.3
Sound
Surround 5.1
Localization
Stereo (Downmix)
Slope
-0.02
Std. Err.
5.24 dB
SPL @ Max Volume
88.0 dB SPL
Weighted THD @ 80dB
1.08
Weighted THD @ Max Volume
1.37
7.1 Rears
No

Update 06/30/2020: Since you can use Sonos One speakers as satellite speakers, but we didn't test this particular setup; for now, we changed the 'Rears' test result to 'No' instead of 'N/A'. The score slightly changed, but not by much.

This 3.0 setup has a poor surrounds performance. As a standalone bar, it downmixes everything into a stereo signal while using the left and right speakers to produce its surround sound. It struggles to produce an accurate and clear representation of surround objects, which can make your audio content feel less immersive. Sound objects like footsteps and voices feel like they're coming from the front of the soundbar rather than around you. Luckily, as the L/R drivers are on the side of the bar, it can make the surround experience slightly better. You can also upgrade this soundbar with separate satellites to improve its surrounds performance. If you listen to mostly surround and Atmos content, check out the Nakamichi Shockwafe Ultra 9.2Ch.

0
Sound
Height (Atmos)
Localization
Not Supported
Slope
N/A
Std. Err.
N/A
SPL @ Max Volume
N/A
Weighted THD @ 80dB
N/A
Weighted THD @ Max Volume
N/A

The Sonos Beam doesn’t support height channels and Atmos. If you're looking for a setup that supports Atmos, check out the Bang & Olufsen Beosound Stage or the Denon Home Sound Bar 550.

6.2
Sound
Sound Enhancement Features
Room Correction
Yes
Dialogue Enhancement
Yes
Auto-Volume/Night Mode
Yes
Subwoofer Level Adjustment
No
Bass Adjustment
Yes
Treble Adjustment
Yes
EQ
No
Surround Level Adjustment
No
Rear Level Adjustment
No
Height Level Adjustment
No
Virtual Surround
No

The Sonos Beam has acceptable sound enhancement features. It has a variety of features, including dialogue enhancement for producing clearer speech and a night mode for adjusting the volume level of different content as it changes. It even offers a room correction feature that automatically adjusts the sound profile to the acoustics of the room it's in, although it's currently only available on the iOS app. You can also adjust the bass and treble if you like to tweak your sound, but it lacks a full graphic EQ. If you want a small soundbar with a graphic EQ, check out the Samsung HW-S60A.

Connectivity
Connectivity
Physical Inputs - Bar
Optical Audio In
Adapter into HDMI ARC
HDMI ARC
1
HDMI Out
No
Full HDMI In
No
Analog Audio In 3.5mm (Aux)
No
RCA In
No
USB for Files
No
Ethernet
1

This soundbar has a limited amount of physical inputs. It has an ethernet port and an HDMI ARC in port. While limiting, you can use the HDMI ARC in port with external devices that have an Optical Out by using the HDMI to Optical adapter that's included in the box. If you're looking for a 3.0 setup with more physical inputs, consider the Bose Smart Soundbar 300.

6.1
Connectivity
Audio Format Support - ARC
eARC
No
Dolby Atmos
No
Dolby Digital
Yes
Dolby Digital Plus
No
DTS
No
DTS:X (eARC only)
No
Dolby TrueHD (eARC only)
No
DTS-HD MA (eARC only)
No
5.1 PCM (eARC only)
No

The Sonos Beam supports surround sound via its HDMI ARC port. Unfortunately, it only supports Dolby Digital content, which is often found on Blu-rays and streaming platforms. This bar can't play back object-based sound formats like Dolby Atmos or DTS:X, which may be disappointing for movie lovers.

0
Connectivity
Audio Format Support - Full HDMI In
Dolby Atmos
No
DTS:X
No
Dolby Digital
No
Dolby Digital Plus
No
DTS
No
Dolby TrueHD
No
DTS-HD MA
No
5.1 PCM
No

If you want a small soundbar with a Full HDMI In port, check out the JBL Bar 5.0 MultiBeam.

6.0
Connectivity
Audio Format Support - Optical
Dolby Digital
Yes
DTS
No

This soundbar can playback Dolby Digital surround sound, which is common in Blu-ray discs and streaming media. It uses its Optical out connection via its included HDMI to Optical adapter. DTS isn't supported, and although it isn't common on its own, it can be a fallback for higher quality DTS-HD MA content also found on Blu-rays.

9.8
Connectivity
Latency
ARC
-14 ms
Optical
0 ms
Full HDMI In
N/A

The Sonos Beam has an outstanding latency performance. It has low latency via its ARC and Optical ports, making it suitable for watching videos and movies. That said, some apps and some TVs compensate for latency differently, so your real-world experience may vary.

3.0
Connectivity
Wireless Playback
Bluetooth
No
Wi-Fi
Yes
Chromecast built-in
No
Apple AirPlay
Yes

While the Sonos Beam lacks Bluetooth connectivity, it can still connect to external devices using Wi-Fi. There are also some apps like Spotify that have direct support built-in so you can easily cast your favorite songs from your mobile device. If you have an iOS device, you can cast using Apple AirPlay. If you have the Sonos app, it connects you to a variety of music sources that can be used to play audio.

Connectivity
Other Input Specifications
4k @ 60 Hz Passthrough
No
4k @ 60 Hz @ 10 bit Passthrough
No
4k @ 60 Hz @ 4:4:4 Passthrough
No
HDR10 Passthrough
No

Unlike the Vizio M-Series M21d-H8R, the Sonos Beam doesn't have a Full HDMI In port, so it doesn't support 4k passthrough.

Connectivity
Connectivity - Subwoofer
Sub Wireless
No
Connectivity
Connectivity - Satellites
Sat Wireless
No
Additional Features
Additional Features
Interface
Display
No

This soundbar's interface has two lights. The main light blinks and changes color according to your input source. The second light, found above the microphone icon, turns on when you activate the mic.

Additional Features
Bar Controls

The Sonos Beam's touch-sensitive controls are fairly basic, including play/pause, volume up/down, track skipping, and enabling/disabling the microphone.

Additional Features
Remote
Universal Remote
No

The Sonos Beam doesn't have a remote. Instead, you can use your TV's IR remote to control the bar's volume if you program it through the 'Remote Control Setup' feature on its app.

Additional Features
Voice Assistants Support
Amazon Alexa
Yes (Built-in)
Google Assistant
Yes (Built-in)
Apple Siri
No

The Sonos Beam comes with Alexa and Google Assistant built-in. There's also a mic mute button on top of the soundbar if you want it to stop listening to you.

Additional Features
App
App Name Sonos S2
iOS Yes
Android Yes
Acts As A Remote
Yes
Controls Soundbar's Settings
All
Casts Device Files
Yes

Update 01/19/2021: The Sonos Beam isn't compatible with the Sonos Controller app anymore. Instead, it can be used with the Sonos S2 app. We've updated our review accordingly.

The Sonos Beam is compatible with the Sonos S2 app. You can use the app to control all of the bar's settings. Also, you can link music services like Spotify to the app, and you can set alarms to use it as an alarm clock. The app lets you control other Sonos speakers and set up room configurations with them. However, you can only control the Trueplay Tuning room correction feature using iOS devices at the moment.

Additional Features
Other Features
Power Saving
No
HDMI CEC (TV Remote Control)
Yes

The Sonos Beam doesn't have a power-saving or standby mode. However, you can set a sleep timer for your audio content that turns off the sound after a set amount of time, though this doesn't turn off the soundbar itself. Once you have it set up, you can also use the TV remote to control the volume of the bar.

Differences Between Sizes And Variants

The Sonos Beam comes in one color variant: 'Black'. Some retailers sell a version of this product known as the Sonos Beam Shadow or the Sonos Beam Shadow Edition, and while we haven't tested them, we expect them to be the same product and perform comparably in tests.

If you come across a variant not listed here, let us know in the discussions so we can update our review.

Compared To Other Soundbars

The Sonos Beam is among the best small soundbars we've tested. Its small, compact size packs a decent performance that can be easily upgraded down the line, thanks to its separate subwoofer and satellites. It also has a great soundstage thanks to its side-firing speakers. Unfortunately, it lacks Bluetooth connectivity and like many small, standalone soundbars, it has a limited amount of inputs.

If you're still looking around for more soundbars, check out our recommendations for the best soundbars, the best soundbars for dialogue, and the best Dolby Atmos soundbars.

Sonos Arc

The Sonos Arc is more versatile than the Sonos Beam since it supports eARC and Atmos content. The Arc is able to deliver deeper bass, and it has better surround and height performances. That said, the Beam performs better at max volume. It's also shorter and much easier to fit between the legs of a 55 inch TV. 

Sonos Playbar

The Sonos Beam is a better soundbar than the Sonos Playbar. The Beam has a more neutral sound profile and has a sleeker and more compact design. It also supports ARC via an adapter and is Apple AirPlay compatible.

Bose TV Speaker

The Sonos Beam is a better soundbar than the Bose TV Speaker. The Sonos is a 3.0 setup with a better surround performance. It comes with more sound enhancement features, it can also get loud enough for a large room, and you can stream music wirelessly to it using Wi-Fi or Apple AirPlay. It also has a companion app that can control all the bar's features. However, the Bose is a 2.0 setup that lets you use Bluetooth to play audio from your phone. The Bose also has an auto-off power-saving feature.

Bose Smart Soundbar 300

The Sonos Beam is a better soundbar than the Bose Smart Soundbar 300. The Sonos has a more balanced sound profile and comes with a room correction feature as well as an auto-volume feature. However, the Bose is smaller, it can support more audio formats via its HDMI ARC port, and it has more wireless playback options. 

Bose Soundbar 500

The Sonos Beam is a better soundbar than the Bose Soundbar 500. The Sonos is a more compact soundbar that can get a bit louder, and its stereo frequency response is more accurate. The soundstage of the Sonos is wider, which feels more immersive. The Sonos also has a room correction feature that automatically adjusts the sound profile based on the acoustics of the room it's in. On the other hand, the Bose supports eARC even though it reencodes these formats into Dolby Digital and is also Bluetooth compatible. The Sonos only supports wireless streaming via Wi-Fi. 

Bose Smart Soundbar 700

When comparing the bars by themselves, the Bose Smart Soundbar 700 is slightly better than the Sonos Beam. The Bose can get slightly louder, without as much compression at max volume. It feels better-made and has a premium feel, with a glass plate covering. The Bose also has more inputs, supports DTS, and can play content wirelessly via Bluetooth as well as Wi-Fi. On the other hand, the Sonos is smaller and easier to fit in your home theater setup.

Sony HT-X8500

The Sonos Beam is a better soundbar than the Sony HT-X8500. The Sonos is a 3.0 setup that's better built, has a discrete center channel that performs better than the Sony's phantom center, and has a better stereo soundstage. You can also stream music to it using Wi-Fi or Apple AirPlay. However, even though the Sony's height channel performance is sub-par, it supports Atmos, which is rare for a 2.1 setup. The Sony also has EQ presets, and it has an HDMI Out as well as a Full HDMI In port, which is nice.

Bose Solo 5

The Sonos Beam is a better soundbar than the Bose Solo 5. The Sonos has a 3.0 configuration with a dedicated center channel, which makes voices even clearer. It's better built, and it gets louder than the Bose. Also, its soundstage is wider, and it has more sound enhancement features. However, only the Bose supports Bluetooth.

Sony HT-G700

Depending on your listening habits, you may prefer either the Sony HT-G700 or the Sonos Beam. The Sonos is a 3.0 setup that's better-built and has built-in voice assistant support. It also has a better stereo soundstage, and it offers a room correction feature. That said, the Sony has a better surround performance, and unlike the Sonos, it supports Atmos content. It also comes with a Full HDMI In port.

Yamaha YAS-109

The Sonos Beam is a better soundbar than the Yahama YAS-109. The Sonos is a 3.0 setup that feels better-built and has a more neutral sound profile. Its center channel performance is better, and it has more sound enhancement features. However, the Yahama has more physical inputs like a Full HDMI In port, and it supports Bluetooth.

Yamaha YAS-108/ATS-1080

The Sonos Beam is a slightly better performing soundbar than the Yamaha YAS-108/ATS-1080. The Sonos has a more extended bass, feels better built, and offers more sound enhancement features. On the other hand, the Yamaha has more connectivity options, including a full HDMI In port as well as DTS support. The Yamaha also has Bluetooth playback, while the Sonos can only connect via Wi-Fi or Apple AirPlay.

JBL Bar 5.0 MultiBeam

Depending on your listening habits, you may prefer either the Sonos Beam or the JBL Bar 5.0 MultiBeam. The Sonos is a 3.0 setup with a better soundstage performance and a more balanced sound profile out-of-the-box. Also, it has a dialogue enhancement feature. However, the 5.0 JBL is better for movies, as it offers better Atmos and surround performances. It also comes with a Full HDMI In port and more wireless playback options.

Samsung HW-S60A

Depending on your listening habits, you may prefer either the Sonos Beam or the Samsung HW-S60A. The Sonos is a 3.0 soundbar with a better soundstage performance and a room correction feature. However, the Samsung is a 5.0 bar with a better surrounds performance and a graphic EQ for sound customization. Also, it supports Bluetooth connectivity and DTS content, unlike the Sonos.

Sony HT-Z9F

The Sony HT-Z9F is a better performing soundbar than the Sonos Beam. The Sony is more versatile, even though it struggles to reproduce a rumbly bass and it can support Atmos content as well as all common audio formats through an ARC or full HDMI In connection. However, the Sonos is great if you're short on space and looking for a standalone soundbar with a fairly neutral sound. The Sonos can also be upgraded later down the line.

Klipsch Cinema 600

The Klipsch Cinema 600 is better than the Sonos Beam for most uses. The Klipsch has a better surround performance, and it reproduces a more extended low-bass. However, the Sonos is better-built with a better soundstage. It also comes with room correction and built-in voice assistant, unlike the Klipsch.

Yamaha YAS-207

The Yamaha YAS-207 is a slightly better soundbar than the Sonos Beam. The Yamaha comes with a dedicated subwoofer and has better bass extension to produce a thumpy bass. It also has more input selection and supports Bluetooth, but the Sonos' center channel performs significantly better for dialogue-heavy content and has more sound enhancement features than the Yamaha.

Klipsch Cinema 400

The Sonos Beam is better than the Klipsch Cinema 400. The Sonos is a 3.0 setup that's better-built and gets louder. It has better soundstage, center, and surround performances. Unlike the Klipsch, it has room correction and built-in voice assistant support. That said, the 2.1 Klipsch comes with a dedicated sub that helps reproduce a more extended low-bass.

Samsung HW-Q950T

The Sonos Beam and the Samsung HW-Q950T are two very different setups. The Samsung is a very versatile 9.1.4 setup with a dedicated sub and satellites. It gets louder, and it can reproduce a more extended low-bass. Unlike the Sonos, it supports Atmos content and has a Full HDMI In port for high quality passthrough. Its surrounds performance is better, too. However, if you want a compact 3.0 setup for enhancing dialogue-centric content like TV shows, the Sonos is a solid choice. It even has a better soundstage than the Samsung.

JBL Link Bar

The Sonos Beam is a better soundbar than the JBL Link Bar. The Sonos is easily upgradable, and its 3.0 configuration means it has a dedicated center speaker, which makes dialogue and voices even clearer. It also has way more features like room correction and a night mode. On the other hand, the JBL supports DTS, can play content via Bluetooth, and has Chromecast built-in. It also acts as an Android TV box and a Google Home Speaker.

Bose Smart Soundbar 900

The Bose Smart Soundbar 900 is better than the Sonos Beam. It's better built and it has a better surrounds performance. Unlike the Sonos, it also supports Dolby Atmos content. That said, the Sonos is still a solid choice for dialogue-centric content like TV shows. It also has a more compact design, which some users may prefer.

Samsung HW-Q700A

The Samsung HW-Q700A is a better soundbar than the Sonos Beam for most uses. The Samsung supports Dolby Atmos content and offers a better surrounds performance. It reproduces a slightly more extended low-bass than the Sonos, and it comes with a Full HDMI In port. It also has a graphic EQ and presets to customize its sound, and it supports more wireless playback options. That said, the Sonos supports voice assistants, and it has a better soundstage. It has a room correction feature, and some listeners may prefer its smaller design.

Samsung HW-Q800A

The Samsung HW-Q800A is a better soundbar than the Sonos Beam. The Samsung comes with a dedicated subwoofer that helps reproduce a more extended low-bass. It supports Dolby Atmos content, and it has a better surround performance. It also supports more wireless playback options and has a graphic EQ and presets to customize its sound. However, the Sonos is more compact with a better soundstage, and it also has a room correction feature.

Samsung HW-Q600A

The Samsung HW-Q600A is a better soundbar than the Sonos Beam. The Samsung supports Dolby Atmos content and comes with a Full HDMI In port, unlike the Sonos. It also reproduces a more extended low-bass and comes with more sound customization features, including a graphic EQ and presets. That said, the Sonos is more compact, and it comes with a room correction feature and built-in voice assistant support. It also has a better soundstage.

Sonos Arc with Sub + One SL Speakers

The Sonos Arc with Sub + One SL Speakers is a better soundbar than the Sonos Beam. The Arc full setup is better-built, and it comes with a dedicated sub and surround speakers. It reproduces a more extended low-bass and offers a better surround performance. Unlike the Beam, it also supports Dolby Atmos content. That said, the Beam's small, compact setup may be preferable for some users.

Yamaha YAS-209

The Sonos Beam is a better soundbar than the Yamaha YAS-209. The Sonos is a 3.0 setup with a dedicated center speaker, unlike the Yamaha, and it can get much louder. It's also more compact, and you can easily upgrade the setup with a sub and rear speakers. However, the YAS-209 comes with a dedicated wireless subwoofer that helps to produce more bass than the Sonos. It also has a lot more connection inputs, and you can also connect to it via Bluetooth.

LG SP8YA

The LG SP8YA is better than the Sonos Beam. The LG comes with a dedicated sub that helps reproduce a more extended low-bass. It also has a better surround performance, more sound enhancement features, and more wireless playback options. Unlike the Sonos, it also supports Dolby Atmos content. That said, the Sonos is better-built, more compact, and offers a better soundstage. Unlike the LG, it also has built-in voice assistant support.

Samsung HW-Q950A

The Samsung HW-Q950A is better than the Sonos Beam. The Samsung is an 11.1.4 setup that supports Dolby Atmos content. Thanks to its dedicated sub, it reproduces a more extended low-bass. It also gets louder, and it has a better surrounds performance thanks in part to its dedicated satellites. It supports more wireless playback options, and its Full HDMI In port supports high quality passthrough. That said, the Sonos is better-built, more compact, and its soundstage is better.

JBL Bar 9.1

The JBL Bar 9.1 is better than the Sonos Beam. The JBL comes with a dedicated sub that reproduces a more extended low-bass, and it supports Atmos content. It has a better surrounds performance and more wireless playback options. Unlike the Sonos, it has EQ presets and a Full HDMI In port. That said, only the Sonos has built-in voice assistant support. Some users may also prefer its more compact design.

Vizio M Series M512a-H6

The Vizio M Series M512a-H6 is better than the Sonos Beam. The Vizio is a 5.1.2 setup with a dedicated sub and satellites. Unlike the Sonos, it supports Atmos content and has a Full HDMI In port for high quality passthrough. It also gets louder, and it has a better surrounds performance. That said, the 3.0 Sonos is better built with built-in voice assistant support. Some users may also prefer its more compact design.

JBL Bar 5.1 Surround

Depending on your listening habits, you may prefer either the Sonos Beam or the JBL Bar 5.1 Surround. The Sonos is a 3.0 setup that offers a better soundstage performance. It also comes with a dialogue enhancement feature and built-in voice assistant support, unlike the JBL. However, the 5.1 JBL comes with a dedicated subwoofer, so it reproduces a more extended low-bass. It also offers a better surround performance and comes with EQ presets, a Full HDMI In port that supports high-quality passthrough, and more wireless playback options.

Bose Smart Soundbar 700 with Speakers + Bass Module

The Bose Smart Soundbar 700 with Speakers + Bass Module is better than the Sonos Beam. The Bose comes with a subwoofer that helps reproduce a more extended low-bass, as well as discrete satellites for a better surround performance. It's also better built, and it has a better stereo soundstage. It even supports more wireless playback options. That said, some users may prefer the Sonos' more compact design.

Denon Home Sound Bar 550

The Sonos Beam is a better soundbar than the Denon Home Sound Bar 550. The Sonos has a better soundstage performance, and it gets louder. It also comes with a room correction feature and a discrete center channel. However, the Denon supports Atmos content and Bluetooth connectivity. It also comes with EQ presets and a Full HDMI In port.

Samsung HW-Q800T

The Samsung HW-Q800T is a better soundbar than the Sonos Beam. The Samsung comes with a dedicated subwoofer, so it can reproduce a more extended low-bass, and it also supports Dolby Atmos content. It gets louder than the Sonos, too, with less compression at max volume. Also, it comes with a graphic EQ and presets for sound customization, a Full HDMI In port that supports high-quality passthrough, and more wireless playback options. That said, the Sonos has a better soundstage performance, and it comes with a room correction feature, unlike the Samsung.

Samsung HW-Q70T

The Samsung HW-Q70T is better than the Sonos Beam for most uses. The Samsung has a more extended low-bass, and it comes with a graphic EQ and presets for sound customization. It supports Atmos content and has a better surrounds performance. It has a Full HDMI In port, and it supports more wireless playback options. That said, the Sonos has built-in voice assistant support, a better soundstage, and a smaller design. It also has room correction and auto-volume features, unlike the Samsung.

LG SN8YG

The LG SN8YG is better than the Sonos Beam. The LG comes with a dedicated sub that helps reproduce a more extended low-bass. Unlike the Sonos, it supports Dolby Atmos content, and it has a Full HDMI In port for high-quality passthrough. It also offers more wireless playback options and more sound enhancement features, like EQ presets. That said, the Sonos is better built with a better soundstage. Some listeners may also prefer its more compact design.

Harman/Kardon Enchant 1300

The Harman/Kardon Enchant 1300 and the Sonos Beam have similar overall performances, so depending on your listening habits, you may prefer one over the other. The Harman/Kardon offers a better surrounds performance, and it comes with EQ presets for sound customization. It also has three Full HDMI In ports and more wireless playback options. You can also use it for high-quality passthrough. However, some users may prefer the Sonos' more compact design, voice assistant support, and more neutral default sound profile. It also comes with an app, unlike the Harman/Kardon.

Samsung HW-Q60T

Depending on your listening habits, you may prefer either the Samsung HW-Q60T or the Sonos Beam. The Sonos is a compact 3.0 setup with better soundstage and center channel performances. It has built-in voice assistant support and a room correction feature. However, the 5.1 Samsung has a dedicated sub that reproduces a more extended low-bass. It has a better surround performance, a Full HDMI In port, and a graphic EQ to customize its sound.

Bang & Olufsen Beosound Stage

The Bang & Olufsen Beosound Stage is a slightly better soundbar than the Sonos Beam. The Bang & Olufsen can produce more bass, it supports Dolby Atmos, and it has a graphic EQ with presets. It also offers more connectivity options and supports more audio formats. However, the Sonos has a more neutral sound profile, and it has a room correction feature. Some users may especially prefer its small size, which can be upgraded later down the line with a separate subwoofer or satellites.

Sony HT-A7000

The Sonos Beam and the Sony HT-A7000 are two very different setups. The Sonos is a very compact 3.0 setup with a better stereo soundstage. It's a suitable upgrade over your TV speakers, but if you like to watch a lot of movies, you may prefer the Sony. The Sony is better built with a better surround performance, and unlike the Sonos, it supports Atmos content. It also has a Full HDMI In port for high-quality passthrough.

Samsung HW-Q900A

The Samsung HW-Q900A is better than the Sonos Beam. The Samsung is a 7.1.2 setup that comes with a dedicated sub, which helps reproduce a more extended low-bass. It gets louder and has a better surrounds performance. Unlike the Sonos, it supports Atmos content, and it has a Full HDMI In port for high quality passthrough. There are even more sound enhancement features available, such as a graphic EQ and presets. That said, some users may prefer the Sonos' better-built, more compact design. Despite its smaller size, the Sonos also has a better stereo soundstage.

Yamaha YAS-408

The Sonos Beam is better for most uses than the Yamaha YAS-408. The Sonos is better built with built-in voice assistant support. It has better center and soundstage performances, and it comes with room correction. That said, the Yamaha may be better suited for movies since it has a better surround performance. Also, its dedicated sub helps reproduce a more extended low-bass.

Vizio M Series M51a-H6

The Vizio M Series M51a-H6 is better than the Sonos Beam. The Vizio is a 5.1 setup with a dedicated sub that helps reproduce a more extended low-bass. Thanks to its satellites, it also has a better surround performance. Unlike the Sonos, it supports Atmos content and comes with EQ presets as well as a Full HDMI In port. That said, some listeners may prefer the Sonos' better-built, more compact design. Unlike the Vizio, the Sonos has room correction and built-in voice assistant support. Its stereo soundstage performance is better, too.

Samsung HW-A650

The Samsung HW-A650 is slightly better for mixed usage than the Sonos Beam. The HW-A650 comes with a dedicated sub that helps reproduce a more extended low-bass. Unlike the Sonos, it has a Full HDMI In port and a graphic EQ for sound customization. That said, the Sonos has a better soundstage. Some users may prefer its more compact design and its built-in voice assistant support.

Samsung HW-A550

The Sonos Beam is marginally better for mixed usage than the Samsung HW-A550. The Sonos is better-built with better center and soundstage performances. Unlike the Samsung, it has room correction and built-in voice assistant. That said, the 2.1 Samsung has a dedicated sub that reproduces a more extended low-bass. Unlike the Sonos, it comes with a graphic EQ, presets, and a Full HDMI In port.

LG SP9YA

The LG SP9YA is a better soundbar for most uses than the Sonos Beam. The LG is a 5.1.2 setup that comes with a dedicated subwoofer. It can reproduce a more extended low-bass, and it has a better surrounds performance. Unlike the Sonos, it supports Atmos content, and it has a Full HDMI In port for high quality passthrough. That said, the 3.0 Sonos has a more compact design. It also offers better soundstage and center performances, so it's a solid choice for users who listen to lots of dialogue-centric content and don't want to use up a lot of space in their setup.

Samsung HW-A450

The Sonos Beam is a bit better for mixed usage than the Samsung HW-A450. The Sonos is better built, and some listeners may prefer its more compact design. It has better soundstage and center performances as well as a room correction feature. Unlike the Samsung, it offers built-in voice assistant capabilities and an HDMI ARC port. However, the Samsung comes with a dedicated sub, so it reproduces a more extended low-bass. It also has a graphic EQ and presets, which some users may prefer for sound customization.

Sennheiser AMBEO Soundbar

The Sonos Beam and the Sennheiser AMBEO Soundbar are two very different standalone setups. The Sennheiser is one of the largest and heaviest bars we've tested. It can reproduce a more extended low-bass, and it gets louder. It also has a better surround performance and supports Atmos content, unlike the Sonos. However, the Sonos is a very compact 3.0 setup. It has a better soundstage, and it's very suitable for dialogue-centric content like TV shows.

LG SN9YG

The LG SN9YG is better than the Sonos Beam. The LG is a 5.1.2 setup with a dedicated subwoofer that helps reproduce a more extended low-bass. Unlike the Sonos, it supports Dolby Atmos content and comes with a Full HDMI In port. It also has a better surrounds performance and EQ presets for sound customization. That said, the 3.0 Sonos has better soundstage and center channel performances.

Vizio V Series V51-H6

The Vizio V Series V51-H6 is better than the Sonos Beam. The Vizio is a 5.1 setup that comes with a dedicated sub and discrete satellites. It can reproduce a more extended low-bass, so you feel more thump and rumble in your audio. It also has a better surround performance. However, the 3.0 Sonos is better built with built-in voice assistant capabilities. It also has a better soundstage.

AmazonBasics 2.1 Channel Bluetooth

The 3.0 channel Sonos Beam is a much better soundbar than the AmazonBasics 2.1 Channel Bluetooth. The Sonos is even more compact, and it has a significantly better-balanced sound profile, a wider soundstage, and more sound enhancement features, including room correction. Neither soundbar has full HDMI-in, though, and both only support Dolby Digital surround content.

Sony HT-ST5000

The Sony HT-ST5000 is better for mixed usage than the Sonos Beam. The Sony is a 7.1.2 setup with a dedicated sub. It can reproduce a more extended low-bass, and it has a better surrounds performance. Unlike the Sonos, it supports Dolby Atmos content. However, the Sonos is a very compact 3.0 setup that's suitable for users who prefer dialogue-centric content like TV shows. Despite its small size, it has a better soundstage than the Sony.

Samsung HW-Q70R

The Samsung HW-Q70R is a better soundbar than the Sonos Beam. The Samsung has a more balanced sound profile, mainly due to its dedicated subwoofer, and it has up-firing speakers that support Dolby Atmos content. Also, the Samsung has more connectivity options, but the Sonos has more customization options to tweak the sound to your liking.

Samsung HW-S60T

The Sonos Beam is a slightly better overall performing soundbar than the Samsung HW-S60T. The Sonos is slightly more compact, its sound profile is a bit better balanced, and it has a better center channel as well as surround performance. The Sonos also offers a wide range of sound enhancement features such as room correction and auto-volume mode. However, unlike the Samsung, it lacks an EQ, which shouldn't be too much of a problem, thanks to its fairly neutral sound out-of-the-box. The Samsung, on the other side, supports Bluetooth connectivity, and it can play DTS content using its HDMI ARC or Optical In port.

Sony HT-S350

The Sonos Beam is a better soundbar than the Sony HT-S350, even without its separate sub and satellites. The Sonos has a noticeably more neutral sound and a wider soundstage. It also has a dedicated center channel, which makes voices and dialog clearer and easier to understand. However, it doesn't have any HDMI ports. Also, only the Sony supports Bluetooth.

Sony HT-S200F

The Sonos Beam is better than the Sony HT-S200F. The Sonos is better-built, and it has built-in voice assistant support. It also has better center and soundstage performances. Unlike the Sony, it has a room correction feature. That said, only the Sony has EQ presets.

Samsung HW-T650

The Samsung HW-T650 is a bit better for mixed usage than the Sonos Beam. The Samsung has a dedicated sub that reproduces a more extended low-bass. Unlike the Sonos, it has EQ presets and a Full HDMI In port. That said, the Sonos is better-built with built-in voice assistant support. It has a better soundstage and room correction.

Polk Audio MagniFi MAX SR

Depending on your listening habits, you may prefer either the Sonos Beam or the Polk Audio MagniFi MAX SR. The Polk Audio is a 5.1 setup with a dedicated sub and discrete satellites. It reproduces more of the thump and rumble in your audio, and it has a better surrounds performance. However, there were some audio issues with the model we tested. Also, the 3.0 Sonos is better-built with built-in voice assistant support. It has a better soundstage, and some listeners may prefer its more compact design.

Sony HT-X9000F

The Sonos Beam is a better overall performing soundbar than the Sony HT-X9000F. The Sonos is smaller, its sound profile is better balanced, and it has a better soundstage. It also has an outstanding discrete center channel, as well as a room correction feature. However, it lacks low-bass. The Sony, on the other hand, can support Atmos content by downmixing it, it has a Full HDMI In port, and it can stream audio via Bluetooth. It can also pass through high-quality signals so if you have it connected between your PC and TV, text on the screen will be crisp and clear.

Samsung HW-Q90R

The Samsung HW-Q90R is a better overall setup compared to the Sonos Beam. The Samsung is a 7.1.4 setup with a better surrounds performance that can also support Dolby Atmos content. It gets louder with less compression at max volume, and it reproduces a more extended low-bass. When it comes to sound enhancement features, the Samsung has a graphic EQ and presets, whereas the Sonos has room correction. The Sonos is simple in its setup and is a great standalone soundbar with a center channel that helps reproduce dialogue accurately. It also has a better soundstage and built-in voice assistant support.

Polk Audio SIGNA S2

The Sonos Beam is better than the Polk Audio SIGNA S2. The Sonos is a 3.0 setup with a discrete center channel that offers a better soundstage performance. It's better-built, too. Unlike the Polk Audio, it comes with a room correction feature as well as built-in voice assistant support. That said, some listeners may prefer to customize their bar's sound using the Polk Audio's EQ presets.

Hisense HS218

The Sonos Beam is better than the Hisense HS218. The Sonos is a 3.0 setup that's better-built and comes with built-in voice assistant support. It has better center and soundstage performances, too. Also, it comes with some more sound enhancement features, like room correction. However, the Hisense comes with a dedicated sub, which helps reproduce a slightly more extended low-bass.

Sony HT-CT800

The Sonos Beam is a much better soundbar than the Sony HT-CT800. The Sonos has a more balanced sound profile, and its soundstage is noticeably larger. It's also a 3.0 setup, meaning it has a dedicated center channel for clearer reproduction of voices and dialogue. On the other hand, the Sony has a dedicated subwoofer, although you can buy a separate sub for the Sonos. The Sony also has many Full HDMI In ports and supports Bluetooth.

Sony HT-S100F

The Sonos Beam is a better soundbar than the Sony HT-S100F. The Sonos is a 3.0 system with a center channel, which makes dialog clearer and easier to understand. It also has a more accurate overall audio reproduction and has many sound enhancement features, including room correction. It has a great soundstage for an immersive feel as well. On the other hand, if you like the simplicity of Bluetooth, only the Sony is Bluetooth compatible. It's also better built and noticeably smaller, making it easier to fit in your setup.

Samsung HW-Q60R

The Samsung HW-Q60R is a slightly better soundbar system than the Sonos Beam. Although the Sonos has a wider soundstage, the overall performance of the Samsung is better. It has a better performance with surround content thanks to the built-in Acoustic Beam up-firing speakers. On the other hand, the Sonos has a room correction feature, and it's easy to upgrade with a wireless sub and satellites, though we tested the Sonos as a stand-alone bar.

Samsung HW-N450

Even with the bar by itself, the Sonos Beam is a better option than the Samsung N450. Without a sub, the Sonos has a similar bass performance to that of the Samsung, on top of having a more neutral sound overall. It is also a 3.0 bar, meaning you have a dedicated center channel for clear voices and dialog. The Sonos also has more features and room correction, which is great. It can also be easily upgraded with a separate sub and satellites. On the other hand, it doesn't have a lot of inputs, and you can't stream content via Bluetooth to the Sonos via Wi-Fi.

Klipsch Bar 48

Even without the sub and satellites, the Sonos Beam is a better soundbar than the Klipsch Bar 48, which has a dedicated subwoofer. The Sonos is smaller and very well-built, along with more neutral sound profile. Also, its soundstage is wider, and it has more sound enhancement features. On the other hand, the Bar 48 can get noticeably louder, and it supports DTS, unlike the Sonos.

Nakamichi Shockwafe Ultra 9.2Ch

The Nakamichi Shockwafe Ultra 9.2Ch is a better setup than the Sonos Beam soundbar by itself. Since we only tested the Sonos with the bar alone, it's somewhat hard to compare a 9.2 system with a 3.0 system. Nevertheless, the Nakamichi gets louder with stereo content, although its soundstage isn't as wide as the Sonos'. The Sonos soundbar also features a room correction feature that uses a microphone to make adjustments to the audio reproduction.

Vizio M-Series M21d-H8R

The Sonos Beam is a better soundbar than the Vizio M-Series M21d-H8R. The Sonos is better-built, and it has a more balanced sound profile. It also has a better soundstage performance, and it gets louder with less compression when you play it at max volume. However, the Vizio comes with some EQ presets, unlike the Sonos, and it has a Full HDMI In port that supports 4k passthrough.

Roku Streambar

The Sonos Beam is a significantly better soundbar than the Roku Streambar. The Sonos is a 3.0 setup that's better-balanced and has a better center as well as surrounds performance. It also has more sound enhancement features and can get a lot louder, though with some compression artifacts present. However, the Roku is a 2.0 setup that has a couple more physical inputs. You can also use it to wirelessly stream your favorite audio to the bar using Bluetooth.

Samsung HW-Q80R

The Samsung HW-Q80R is a better setup than the Sonos Beam. As the Samsung is a 5.1.2 setup, the Sonos is suitable if you prefer to have only one soundbar that can do it all. The Sonos offers several sound enhancement features that the Samsung doesn't have such as room correction. However, the Sonos doesn't support height channels or Atmos. It also has a lack of connectivity options compared to the many offered by the Samsung.

Vizio SB3220n-F6

The Sonos Beam is a better soundbar than the Vizio SB3220n-F6. While both bars have fairly well-balanced, neutral sound profiles, the Sonos packs a bit more thump and rumble. It also has a dedicated center channel, which helps voices sound clearer and an even wider soundstage. It doesn't support Bluetooth, though, unlike the Vizio, which also has a regular audio jack for better mobile device support and can play files from a USB key.

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