All about the new Sonos Wireless Multiroom Music System at Totally Wired
Do you want to listen to your music in more than one room? Do you want a system that is simple to use, easy to set up and cost effective? That is well made and looks as good as it sounds? And can be easily upgraded at any time? Well really, who wouldn't!
Archived page: January 2016
– The new Geneva AeroSphere sounds better, looks very cool and is easier to set up
Sonos is all about easy.
On the simplest level, Sonos is a very easy way to get music from A to B. Wirelessly. With just two pieces that together cost less than $1000, you can have a functioning system, including speakers, allowing you to listen to all your CD collection, downloads, internet radio and streaming services as well as things you'd like to plug in such as an iPod. You could think of this system as a very smart, high performance alternative to the little speakers some people connect to their computer. But there is much, much more to Sonos that that.
One room, or ten rooms, it makes little difference. You don't need to be a computer whizz to make Sonos work (although if you are you'll revel in all the customization you can do to your system and appreciate the free updates and applications). If you have an iPod or any music stored on a computer in the house, you'll be ready to go. Unlike anything else to do with computers, you also have one big advantage with Sonos - us. We are more than happy to come out and set things up for you and are always on hand to answer your questions.
Wireless is just what we need in existing homes
It's too complicated and too expensive to try and run cables when there is a simple and better way of doing things. Sonos is Wireless. Not just for the transmission of music - the remote control is part of the system is too, and will work in any room in the house. Sonos works brilliantly with other wireless devices - especially from Apple including all versions of the iPhone, Touch and iPad. Not to mention all new smartphones with the Google Android operating system. With new homes, the costs of construction are continuing to spiral - any system that is simpler, requires less inbuilt cables, keypad and installation costs has got to be a winner.
Sonos is broadly compatible
Sonos will work with both Macs and PCs, and caters for almost every format of digital music storage. Sonos will work with existing audio systems and speakers. Let's face it - the iPod is the most successful audio product ever and if you have an iPod, you have iTunes - Sonos can access iTunes seamlessly. And after that, any other system is a doodle.
Sonos really is simple.
Just one small box per room and one remote control for the house is all that it required. So you can start small and built up, room by room. Remember it is wireless, so just needs power. Each box becomes part of a mesh network so the performance actually improves with each addition. The setup software for Sonos is the best we have seen - each step is clearly laid out and it works equally well with PC or Mac. And once the initial set up is done, you really don't need to look at it again - everything is automatic.
Sonos sounds really good.
When using high quality formats such as AppleLossLess, Sonos will send crisp & clear uncompressed music all around your house. You can use high quality speakers with it as the amplifiers are capable and powerful. It features both analogue preamplifier and digital outputs allowing you to also choose to run it with existing amplifiers or even active speaker systems. Or run into the digital inputs of a surround sound system or high quality DAC such as the NuForce Icon HDP or Firestone Spitfire Mk2. And you can also run a CD or iPod into the system in any room. And have the sound from that available to any other rooms. Sonos have just released their new wireless dock which will transmit musc stored on any iPod to anywhere in your house, show all information on the iPod and allow full control
While simple is good, Sonos doesn't skimp on features. Internet radio is part of the package and you also get access to the new generation of streaming services. Easy set alarm functions, playlists and full setup options both the system and other sources. The new touch-panel is a thing of beauty, displaying cover art and allowing to all the options in terms of selecting songs, albums and playlists, controlling any or all rooms from any location and much more.
Sonos is unique among consumer electronics products because it keeps getting better even after you buy it. That's because they offer free software updates with new features, music offers and more. And updating couldn’t be easier - Whenever an update is available, Sonos will automatically notify you on your Controller - just click ‘OK’ and it’s done. Not only that but there is also a nice control program for both Mac and PC to compliment the iPhone application and they all carry the happy ‘Free’ word.
How to get started.
The first thing is to come and see (and hear) Sonos in action for yourself - we’ve got it all set up in the shop and we are sure that once you’ve played around with it there will be no going back. While setting Sonos up is as easy as it gets, there are a few tricks involved and having us do the initial set up for you will mean you are up and running much faster. After that however it’s all plain sailing and if you want to add pieces or rooms, it can all be done with literally the touch of a button.
The new Play3 (NZ$590) makes Sonos the affordable wireless streaming system for everyone. Essentially a more compact and simplified version of the shelf mount S5 speaker system, the Play3 can tuck anywhere and has all the features that make Sonos the perfect choice for New Zealand homes. Combined with the launch of the Play3 (and clearly working on the basis that they really want to make it easy to get into) Sonos have more than halved the price of the little ZoneBridge base station. This is the one little bit you need to transmit music from a computer anywhere in your house to the Play3. Put these two bits together and you can have Sonos up and running for just NZ$ 745 inclusive of GST. You could spend more than that just trying to get speaker cable to another room! The Play3 is a great way to extend existing Sonos systems - it's perfect for smaller rooms like studies or bedside tables. You can move it around really easily and given the price, it might just be the perfect thing to keep the kids quiet. Or not. Anyway, they are just fresh in stock, come in both white and black finishes and sound seriously good.
The Play5 wireless speaker system is a self contained and powerful compact stereo speaker with 5 drivers, each with an individual amplifier giving both remarkable quality and room filling dispersion. It communicates wirelessly so can be used in any location in the house. Just click here to see the neat little video on how the Play5 works.
Sonos Controller for your iPhone, Touch and now iPad.
It's free! Just go to the Apple Aps store and download the Sonos Controller in seconds. It turns your iPhone, iPod or iPad into a fully fledged Sonos remote control. You simply touch the screen to pick a room, point and flick to pick a song, and then hit play. Grouping zones and searching tracks is super easy. In fact there's nothing that you can't do with your system. How cool is that?
And Android too!
It's not all about Apple. There are some great new smartphones out there that run of Google's Android operating system and now you can control your Sonos system with these - find out more here.
A World of Music!
'Spotify' is here in New Zealand now and is a great way to access millions of tracks without downloading. Just look for it under 'More Music' in your your Sonos window. Find out more here.
Yet another thing we really like about Sonos is the fact that they can do pretty much everything you could ever want with a range comprising of just 6 boxes and a single remote control. So rather than pages of prices and parts numbers we can summerize the whole system in a few lines.
The Sonos Play5 is an integrated single box solution for any room. With 5 built in speakers powered by 5 digital amps it sounds spectacular. It is a hugely cost effective option requiring no cabling at all other than power to make it go. The joys of wireless! In a choice of black or white. NZ$ 880 including GST and delivery
And just released - the new Play:3 speaker system. All the same capabilities as the Play5 but in a smaller sleeker package for secondary rooms. NZ$ 590 each.
The Bridge is a great little problem solver. It enables you to wirelessly connect Sonos to a distant computer or modem. It also extends wireless range. NZ$ 120
The Connect Amp has 55 powerful watts of amplifier built in and connects directly to speakers. These can be in-ceiling, in wall, free standing or even outside.NZ$ 1,095
The Connect is a very smart little box - it's a high quality wireless preamp with analogue inputs and outputs allowing toy to integrate Sonos with any existing system. And both coax and optical digital outputs allowing connection to both quality DACs and Home Cinema amps. NZ$ 795
SONOS Subwoofer NZ$1595
The SONOS SUBWOOFER is here. And it's spectacular – even better than we'd hoped for. The Sonos subwoofer will fit in just about any new or existing Sonos system - you can use it with either single or paired Play 3 or Play 5 speakers and with any system using the Control amp (formerly known as the ZP120). Its an absolute breeze to set up - the Sonos software guide you through a simple but very effective routine that means you'll be up and running in minutes with the sound being perfectly matched to any room, any placement and speakers. The Sonos sub is one of the few that actually looks as good as it sounds and visa versa - the unique shape with two opposing drivers delivers deep powerful bass from a compact and slim enclosure. Get one now in beautiful high gloss black.
And that is it - we told you it was simple, didn't we?
So come in and see us now. Setting up a music system in more than one room has never been so easy, so much fun, so cost effective. And we have just the system to help you do this...
Wireless that works like magic.
The key to designing a music system that plays music all over the house is having a wireless network that works all over the house. That’s why Sonos created a wireless mesh network called SonosNet to deliver the range and performance required of a multi-room music system. When you need to stream music wirelessly, the network you use really matters. When a network is overloaded or stretched to its limits, you hear echoes and delays from room to room, and your Internet speed can be sluggish. Not so with Sonos.
Sonos chose a mesh network because a traditional network with a central hub relaying all the traffic can't provide the house-wide coverage we want. What's more, access point networks are plagued by performance issues. SonosNet changes all that — providing the extensive range and superior performance you need to enjoy music in every room without requiring a massive wiring remodel.
Sonos is thinking of you
We take our clients well-being seriously and have looked carefully at the Sonos Wireless system. This is what we can tell you -
The Radio Frequency emissions from the Sonos system are much lower than many other household items - for instance cellphones. The range (and hence signal strength) are only as much as they need to be - the mesh network relies on a number of small units talking to each other over a tightly constrained bandwidth rather than a single hub blasting out to all parts. A cellphone has to be able to talk to a distant cell tower so sends at a much greater level of power. And things like TV transmitters that beam into every town are also running at considerably higher levels.
With Sonos, you do have the option of using a wired network via CAT5 cable. Many homes now feature this as 'future proofing' Which means the future is here. There is no reason not to utilize CAT5 if it is in place or easy to run as it is a very reliable safe option. CAT5 has excellent resistance to interference and works even over long distances.
So let's make Sonos work for you!
We've immersed ourselves in Sonos. We use it every day in the shop - not just to show everyone how it works but as a demonstration source in some of our best systems. If you know what you are doing there need be no compromise. We've got all the products on hand so as soon as you are ready to go - we are too. Just tell us what you want to do and we'll show you the best options to do it. Hear and see for yourself what it can do. Then we'll select the right pieces, match everything up and help you with either installation or (if you'd like to do it yourself) all the advice you need. Totally Wired support World Wide Fund for Nature. Your purchase will indirectly help the survival of New Zealand’s special Hector Dolphins. Find out more here.
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