Written by Laurence

Expert review of the Sonos One

The Sonos One is the updated version of the iconic Play:1 speaker. During testing, the speaker turned out be identical in size and audio performance. The One has a number of improved functions, such as the addition of an interactive touchpad. In the near future, you'll also be able to operate the most important functions by voice command. On this page, you can read all of my impressions.

In short

  • The touchpad allows for simple controls.
  • You'll be able to use voice commands for the most important functions in the near future.
  • The speaker is easy to install.
  • Playing songs and making playlists via the app is a breeze.
  • Both treble and vocals are perfectly clear.
  • Voice commands are currently unavailable in the Netherlands and Belgium.
  • The speaker isn't compatible with current PLAY:1 mounting brackets.

First impression

First impression Sonos Play: 1

You won't find any physical buttons on top of the completely black design, but an interactive touchpad. You change the volume with a simple press, while a swiping motion skips a track. This is a lot easier than having to press those tiny buttons. Additionally, the speaker features a dedicated pairing button. This makes the installation much easier than the Play:1, for which you needed to press multiple buttons at the same time.

Specifications at a glance: installation

Just like the Play:1, installing the Sonos One takes less than 10 minutes. I connected the speaker to the socket, launched the Sonos Controller app on my smartphone, and started the installation. If you don't have the app, you need to download it first. This only take a couple of minutes. Afterward, the app guides you through a simple installation procedure. Each step is clearly explained with help of text and images.

Highlighted specifications: the app

After installation, I was able to integrate my Spotify account within 1 minute via the app. Afterward, I listened to my favorite playlists and composed various queues. As I also own a Play:1, I was able to designate the speakers to specific rooms via the app. This way, I was able to easily switch between different speakers or play back the same song. In the near future, you'll also be able to operate the speaker with your voice, but this feature wasn't available yet.

Specifications highlighted: sound

Just like the Play:1, the Sonos One utilizes 2 class D amplifiers that feature a tweeter and middle tone driver. This means that performance wise, they're identical. For a speaker of this size, the One delivers a clear sound. Especially the vocals can be clearly heard in the mix. The bass isn't very defined, but surprisingly heavy. When I played back Brass Monkey, by the Beastie Boys, the bass was clearly audible.

Highlighted specifications: connectivity

The Sonos One is only suitable for streaming, as it doesn't have any audio ports. This means you can't connect the speaker to an MP3 player or your television via an AUX cable. If you already own accessories for the Play:1, like a mount, these won't fit on your Sonos One. This is because the required screw holes are missing. Suitable mounts for the One will be released at a later date.

Specifications highlighted: suitable for different rooms

Despite the clear and surprisingly heavy sound reproduction, the Sonos One is unable to produce a high volume. This means the speaker isn't suitable for large living rooms. This speaker is mostly suitable for the bedroom or the kitchen. Thanks to its waterproof design, you can also readily use in the bathroom or kitchen, if there's an available socket.


© 1999 - 2018 - Coolblue B.V.
Customer rating: 9.3 / 10 - 36,778 reviews