Considering the Playbar, Sonos’ first foray into home theatre, launched in 2013, it’s about time a replacement came along. The Arc is exactly that and also replaces the Playbase, too.
Sonos says it builds on the firm’s “industry-leading innovations in home theater, with software-driven audio that immerses listeners in dramatic detail, crystal clear dialogue and impressive bass, featuring support for Dolby Atmos.”
The soundbar is powered by no less than 11 drivers consisting of eight elliptical woofers and three silk-dome tweeters. They’re all angled in various directions to achieve an immersive experience with Dolby Atmos, which is available on more than 25 video streaming services like Netflix.
The Arc pulls in some features from its pint-sized brother, the Beam, with microphones and support for both Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant. It also has, of course, Trueplay for built-in tuning, including the new challenges that Atmos brings - namely height.
Arc can be sat in front of your TV or wall mounted and it intelligently knows where it is in order to automatically adjust the sounds for each orientation.
Like the Playbar, it has an infrared sensor so you can use your TV remote to control the volume. It also has an LED light that knows when it needs to be on or off based on ambient light conditions.
The inclusion of HDMI eARC (enhanced audio return channel) keeps setup simple - although it still has optical if you prefer - and adds the ability for high-quality audio playback. Airplay 2 is also supported.
The Sonos Arc is available to pre-order at £799/US$799 from today and will go on sale 10 June, available in black or white, each with a matt finish.
Coming just before the Arc on 8 June, is Sonos’ new software platform called S2. This app offers an upgraded experience and is required to use the Arc or upgraded Sonos speakers (see below).
Sonos says it brings support for higher resolution audio technologies, including Dolby Atmos as well as “increased security”.
An redesigned interface should make it easier for users to find content, control sound and create a more personal system with features like saved room groups.
New Sub and Sonos Five
Sonos has also upgraded two of its existing speakers so the Sub is now Gen 3 and the Play:5 is also Gen 3 and renamed to simply Sonos Five.
It’s a case of fine-tuning with tweaked designs and upgrades in the form of improved connectivity. They both increased memory, more processing power and a new wireless radio.
The biggest news here is that the Sonos Five is available in white with a matching white grille.
The Sub Gen 3 and Sonos Five will go on sale 10 June priced at £699/US$699 and £499/US$699 respectively.