Review: Sonos Ray Soundbar

If you are unsatisfied with the audio available from your TV speakers, then there are plenty of audio options available to improve your experience. One company offering a growing range of products is Sonos.

While we’ve reviewed the Playbar, Arc and Beam before, their latest product, the Sonos Ray is a soundbar designed for smaller spaces and to complement display sizes up to 55″.

While those chasing a soundbar for their TV are certainly a target market for the Sonos Ray, I also think the size, features, audio performance and price could make this a great companion to live under your computer monitor.

Design

Sonos follows a fairly familiar formula with the Ray. Available in either black or white, the Ray features a front speaker grille that hides two tweeters for crisp high-frequency response and two high-efficiency mid-woofers to ensure faithful playback of mid-range frequencies and solid bass.

On top, you’ll find capacitive touch buttons and at the rear, you’ll find your connections.

Overall this is one of the simplest designs Sonos offers and this should blend in with most setups. Sure, there are no flashy RGB lights, that’s not what Sonos does, instead choosing to focus on audio quality and features instead rather than attention-grabbing or distracting lighting effects.

Features

The Sonos Ray offers a number of great features, many of which you’d expect from Sonos if you’re already a customer.

There are touch controls on top, great if you’re within arms reach of the Ray, as well as support for Apple AirPlay 2, Spotify Connect, as well as support for voice assistants – Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant.

With HDMI eARC support, it allows you to easily connect to modern TVs, or for older displays, there’s still optical audio-in connection. If you position this in your office there’s a decent chance your PC, or doc will have optical audio out, making a connection to the Ray incredibly simple and easy.

While Ray does not have the ability to directly connect over Bluetooth, you can stream audio content over your WiFi or Ethernet network. To do this, you simply fire up the Sonos app, and select your audio of choice.

The amount of supported audio streaming services are really hard to beat with Sonos supporting Spotify, YouTube Music, Amazon Music, Apple Music, Audible, iHeartRadio, Last.fm, Plex, Soundcloud, Sticher, TIDAL, TuneIn, Pocketcasts and many others.

Being a Sonos product, you have the ability to play audio not just through this speaker, but throughout your home with multi-room audio just a couple of taps away.

Price and Availability

The Sonos Ray costs A$399, the cheapest soundbar from Sonos, designed for use with TVs up to 55″ in size.

The Ray is also available in a surround sound setup that includes 2x Play One speakers for rear speakers, this costs A$927 as a bundle.

For those who want to wall-mount their soundbar, Sonos offers a mounting bracket to support this and if you buy the Ray in a mounted set, it’ll cost you $458.

The Sonos Ray soundbar is available now from Sonos direct, or from one of the various Sonos resellers.

Overall

This is a great little soundbar that’s really affordable. While it has nothing on the amazing Arc, particularly when combined with a Sonos Sub and 2x Sonos One rear speakers.

Ultimately what you get from the Sonos Ray, is everything we love about a Sonos speaker, great connected services to play music from, a solid mobile app to control it and the ability to connect to almost any display.

The efficient form factor can fit places the larger soundbars can’t. While this product won’t suit everyone, if you’re chasing a smaller soundbar that still packs plenty of punch and looks great doing it, then you should definitely consider the Sonos Ray soundbar.

REVIEW OVERVIEW

Design
8.5
Features
9.3
Value
9.6
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Jason Cartwright
Jason Cartwrighthttp://techau.com.au/author/jason/
Creator of techAU, Jason has spent the dozen+ years covering technology in Australia and around the world. Bringing a background in multimedia and passion for technology to the job, Cartwright delivers detailed product reviews, event coverage and industry news on a daily basis. Disclaimer: Tesla Shareholder from 20/01/2021

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