Introducing the new SONOS PLAYBAR

Posted on February 12th, 2013 by Sonos Staff in News, Products, Worldwide

The next stage of home theater, amazing Sonos HiFi sound for your television and all the music on earth come together in a radically simple way.

Unleash your TV Sound. Unleash all the music on earth with the new SONOS PLAYBAR:

The newest creation from the Sonos team is the perfect complement to your home theater:

Never before has wireless HiFi audio been this easy. Simply plug PLAYBAR into your TV and any Sonos component into your router. Control the volume with your TV remote or one of the free Sonos controller apps.

PLAYBAR’s built-in sensors will automatically orient the audio channels and adjust the EQs for the perfect sound.

Six mid-woofers provide deep, rich low frequency sounds, accompanied by three tweeters for crystal clear high-frequency sounds.

But we didn’t stop there:

PLAYBAR is smart. Sonos’ advanced speaker array technology makes 24 million calculations every second where each mid-woofer adds and subtracts from one another simultaneously

PLAYBAR is scalable. You can add a SUB or even two PLAY:3s for a 5.1 experience at the touch of a button without the need for messy wiring or complex audio set-up.

PLAYBAR is sensitive. We thought of you late-night movie-watchers. ‘Night Sound’ dynamically compresses the audio to avoid any bangs and crashes waking the family, while making quieter sounds more audible. ‘Speech Enhancement’ boosts the frequency range of the human voice so you never miss those essential moments of dialogue.

Whether you’re watching your favorite movie, catching up the latest TV series, gaming with your friends or having a full-on dance party, Sonos has you covered. PLAYBAR is the soundbar for music lovers.

Pre-order the SONOS PLAYBAR before it’s available on March 5th. Then get your system ready for PLAYBAR by updating your Software now (Sonos Controller > Online Updates).

Have questions? RSVP for one of two Sonos Live Chats (Europe – Feb. 20th at 10am GMT & US – Feb. 21st @ 11am PT) and ask questions directly to the Product Development team in charge of the SONOS PLAYBAR.

Posted on February 12th, 2013 by Sonos Staff in News, Products, Worldwide

  • John Richardson

    The first line should have “complement” not “compliment”. I only mention this because of SONOS’s admirable attention to detail.

  • Frank Vergeer

    Looks like a great product to add a Home Theater to your Sonos system, especially with a Sub!

    A small correction: for real 5.1 you would need 4 Play3’s, a Bar and a Sub. With 2 Play3’s you would have 3.1.

    • Frank Vergeer

      I realize that the Bar functions as central speaker and two front speakers, so it does deliver 5.1 with two Play3’s and a Sub!

    • stiby

      The breakdown image you can see three sets of three speakers (2 woofers and a tweeter) on the bar covering the left, right and center channels.
      The tweeters on the left and right edges are angled to reflect the most directional sound, that leave two PLAY:3’s for read side channels and the sub.

      Though I to would prefer to have 2 PLAY:3’s (prefer it to be PLAY:5’s) directing the audio in the room, with 2 PLAY:3’s on the rear…. there is always hope.

  • Scott

    Hi. Am I correct in saying you CANNOT pair the PlayBar with Play 5’s? Only Play 3’s can be used for the expanded surround sound experience?

    • http://sonos.com Sonos

      Hi Scott, that’s correct. Your PLAYBAR will work with the PLAY:3

      • Adam

        Noooooooooooooo.

      • http://www.facebook.com/people/Jin-Chan/206402989 Jin Chan

        thats so BS! so much for having two play 5s that is so pointless! Now i have to get play 3s instead to get this to get 5.1 surround.. ugh you guys can’t possibly not allowing the play 5 at all -_-.. would be amazing if this can eventually do 7.1 in the future.

      • Robin

        Why not with Play5? I just bought two Play5’s last weekend!

      • Chris

        Is that right? Only Play 3? Why would that be?

      • http://www.facebook.com/bob.thompson.528 Bob Thompson

        Scott, can you comment as to why? Many of us have PLAY 5’s that we would like to use with the Playbar.

        • http://www.sonos.com/support Sonos Support Team

          Hi Bob,

          The SONOS PLAY:5 wireless hardware does not support surround sound functionality and firmware cannot be updated to support it.

          PLAY:5 was designed to be our best all-in-one music player and is perfect for use as a standalone unit or combined in stereo pair mode. PLAY:3 was designed to deliver great sound as a stand-alone music player – it also has electronics that are optimized for surround sound, which, coupled with a smaller form factor and mounting hardware makes it/them convenient to use as surround speakers.

          I hope this answers your question.

          Regards,

          Sonos Support

  • Mark Berkhoff

    I wonder how the playbar volume can be controlled by the tv-remote. Most tv’s output an optical signal at the maximum volume, which is not effected by the tv-remote.

    • http://twitter.com/uknicks uknicks

      Probably the same way analog out works from a TV to a Play 5.

      • Mark Berkhoff

        Analog out is typically volume controlled while optical out is not.
        In my view the only wat they could do this is through IR or through HDMI-CE..

  • stiby

    Is the PLAYBAR digital input like the digital input on a CONNECT?

    For example watching some sport in the lounge in 5.1 using 2 PLAY:3’s and a SUB and I head to get some snacks in the kitchen, could I group the lounge with the kitchen and still get the live commentary?

    • http://sonos.com Sonos

      Hello Stiby – The PLAYBAR will act just like other Sonos players currently do. You can group it with any of your other players. Thanks!

  • Ben

    Is there going to be some way to support uncompressed multichannel audio or are we going to be stuck with DD5.1? That’s an awful lot of money to spend for a wireless multichannel setup without support for DD-HD or DTS-HD.

  • Henrik

    I would also like a clarification if this setup (Playbar + two play:3) would support DD-HD, DTS-HD etc?
    Additionally, clarification regarding the possible use of play:5 as rear speakers would also be very good!

    Great work Sonos!

    • aydincan

      I read that there is a technical limitation with PLAY:5, it can’t be used as rear speakers since it has a different unit for transmission compared to PLAY:3. Anyways why would you use such nice speakers as rear speakers? It’s like treating them as waste..

  • JE

    Could I as for the dimensional specs? Love my Sonos system, this sounds like a great addition.

    • http://sonos.com Sonos

      Hi JE – The dimensions are: 3.35” (H) x 5.51” (D) x 35.43” (W), 85mm (H) x 140mm (D) x 900mm (W)

  • Mike Kelly

    Can anyone tell me if the playbar will have a headphone socket?

    • http://sonos.com Sonos

      Hi Mike – the PLAYBAR does not have a headphone input.

  • Gordon van Zuiden

    With the new Sonos Playbar enhanced 5.1 HT system and HDMI video switching at the TV – why do we still need receivers? (Except perhaps for the dedicated home theater experience.)

    • http://twitter.com/uknicks uknicks

      Exactly! Just make sure TV has enough HDMI ports and TOSLINK. Done.

  • Meehow

    What do you guys think is going to sound better for regular music (not sound from TV)? Two Play 5s or this Playbar?

    • gadgetreview

      Playbar.

      • Meehow

        Why?
        Play 5s have 1 bass driver in addition to mid-range drivers and tweeters. Playbar has mid range and tweeters but no bass driver.

        • aydincan

          I think without Sub, stereo paired 2xPlay:5 would sound much better than the Playbar alone. I mean I am sure!

          • Andrew

            I can guarentee the Sub will change your system completely! Its fantastic :-)

      • Meehow

        Why? Play 5s have 1 bass driver in addition to mid-range drivers and tweeters. Playbar has mid range and tweeters but no bass driver. Just wondering what the better set up would be (without the Sub).

  • Mark Berkhoff

    My current Sonos system has a rather high latency causing lipsync issues when watching TV. Hope this will get fixed now. There will always remain some latency when sending audio to wireless (rear) speakers.

  • http://www.facebook.com/garyrgilbert Gary Gilbert

    Have the delay issues (lip-synch) been fixed with the playbar since it has a digital audio in? What about when pairing with two play 3’s for 5.1 surround. I cant possibly think of paying 700 euro for out of synch sound when watching tv or a movie.

    • http://sonos.com Sonos

      Hi Gary. There won’t be any sync issues between the PLAYBAR and your TV. Also, all Sonos components will stay in sync even when linked to the PLAYBAR while playing music.

      • Peter Nørkjær

        But we would still need the PLAYBAR to get Sonos synced with the TV.
        I was a bit disappointed when I found out that a ZP120 also have a delay.

      • Mark Berkhoff

        Playing music won’t cause sync issues. It is watching TV that most people are concerned about. Even if the paybar is in sync, it does take time to wirelessly send audio to read speakers over SonosNet. This will introduce latency.
        I will have to see it before I believe it.

      • Patrick Dawson

        So, a possible configuration is to connect two Play 3s and a Sub to the Playbar. If I connect the Playbar to a TV, will all Sonos components be in sync with the TV? Your answer suggests a Playbar will be in sync with the TV, and all components in sync when listening to music, but what about all components when connected to a TV?

      • Andrew

        But what about while watching TV? You havent answered the question Sonos.

        • http://www.sonos.com/support Sonos Support Team

          Hi Andrew,

          There will be no noticeable delay between audio coming from the PLAYBAR and your television. You can find more information here:

          https://sonos.custhelp.com/app/answers/detail/a_id/1930

          Thanks,

          Sonos Support

          • Andrew

            Hi, I’ve had the PlayBar (and a decided to buy a couple of Play3s for surround) now for a few weeks ago and I really love it. Works really well integrated to the Sub which combined is great for playing straight off the TV. Movies are fantasitic and TV programs are much improved. I honestly cant see any lip synch issues (worried for nothing) and Im suprised too that the optical output of an older LV LCD TV works really great. I’ve tried plugging the toslink straight into a media centre which I know sends out Dolby Digital and I really can’t tell that much difference.

            The only bug bare I have is I like to regularly play music as well and I’ve noticed the Play3 surrounds dont act like regular speakers but continue as configured surrounds so dont really get any sound out of them. If I want to then listen to Play3s connected to the Sub and Playbar as ‘regular’ stereo speakers I need to reconfigure them in the controller. Its a bit teadious as I have to reconfigure them back again when watching TV or a movie. It would be great if Sonos provided a firmware update to the controller to allow saving regular config setting as favourites so only one click would be needed instead of quite a few!

            happy listening!

      • Cinelliman

        I just spent two hours watching TV and the Playbar lip-synch issue is REAL. Finally had to switch off Playbar and turn on tinny TV speakers. What is SONOS going to do about this show stopper?

        • Andrew

          The link provided by Sonos below indicates ‘around 30ms’ delay for the Playbar which they believe is ‘normal’. The question is if this delay is noticeable. Going on your report above – it looks like it is – which is very unfortunate.

          • http://www.sonos.com/support Sonos Support Team

            Andrew,

            The approximate 30ms delay for the PLAYBAR is completely normal for this type of product. It will not be noticeable – 30 milliseconds is .03 seconds.

            What Cinelliman is describing is most likely delayed audio between the output from his televisions’s optical port and the on-screen video and can be compensated for with the PLAYBAR’s Audio Delay (lip sync) setting.

            Thanks!

        • http://www.sonos.com/support Sonos Support Team

          Cinelliman,

          There should be no noticeable delay between the TV and your PLAYBAR. However, it is possible that the audio output by your TV’s optical port is not completely in-sych with the on-screen video. Some televisions do add additional processing delay when outputting audio which is not present when playing from internal speakers.

          The PLAYBAR has a lip-sync delay setting which can be adjusted to compensate for any delayed audio signal. Go to your Settings or Preferences menu from a Sonos Controller and select the PLAYBAR. Audio Delay (lip-sync) is controlled with a slider to add more delay – simply adjust the slider until the video and audio are in sync again.

  • Cue

    I hope the audio sync issues between this system and the other sonos systems that maight exist within the household gets resolved. It is an issue that many people experience with their sonos connect running brought their stereo and speakers and play 5/play 3 in other rooms there is a very noticeable audio delay between the two.

  • cue

    Can you have more than one sonos sub connected to increase bass/movie bass output with the Playbar? Sort of like a left sub and a right sub? Or even have 2 and have the system recognize that instead of playing as loudly it can then produce down to he 18hz range for amazing movie experiences.

  • http://www.facebook.com/light.wilkinson Wulfric Light-Wilkinson

    Will the lip-sync issues still persist when watching TV? And can you pair it with Play 5s just for listening to music?

    • http://sonos.com Sonos

      Hi Wulfric. There will be no sync issues between the PLAYBAR and your television. Also, all Sonos components will stay in sync even when linked to the PLAYBAR while playing music.

      • http://www.facebook.com/light.wilkinson Wulfric Light-Wilkinson

        Great thank you!

  • Kasper

    Its great have surround sound function with the playbar. – And I am thinking about buying one.
    BUT.
    Why not a “surround sound –station”, just like docking station, but a digital input and the ability to decode and send surround sound to a left, right, rear-left ,rear-right and center speaker of my own choosing, so I can customize my setup?

    Setup 1:
    left, right, rear-left ,rear-right = Play3
    Center = playbar

    Setup 2:
    left, right, = Play 5
    rear-left ,rear-right = Play 3
    Center = playbar

    Setup 3:
    left, right, rear-left ,rear-right = Play5
    Center = playbar

    Setup 3:
    left, right, rear-left ,rear-right = Play5
    Center = 2 x Play 3
    Ect.

    And of cause a SUB option in all setup-variations

    …..Or maybe a variation with a Play 6 ;-)

  • JC78

    Why no DTS ??? Almost all bluray discs have DTS tracks !!! Any update later ???

  • Giacuz

    Hi, no way to use a headphone or other solutions (beside “nightvision”) for silencing the speakers into a headset?

    • Eddy

      You can use a Sonos Connect plugged to a headphone amp (a nice setup close to your listening chair) and send the sound to the Connect from the bar. Probably the Connect and Soundbar would have to be wired to the network to avoid latency.

  • JC78

    Why no DTS ??? Almost all bluray disc have DTS tracks !!! Any update ???

    • http://sonos.com Sonos

      Hi JC. Currently we don’t support DTS as it’s unlikely to be found on a optical output or an HDMI ARC. Also, it’s currently not used for internet streaming either.

      • JC78

        I will not connect PLAYBAR ( + SUB + 2 PLAY3 ) to my TV because I use a video projector, so I will connect it directly to my Bluray player with TOSLINK providing DTS … 90% of Bluray have only DTS … It is a shame not to enjoy 5.1 surround sound but only stereo :( … please think about an update for Home Theater maniacs !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Eddy

    Will the bar let you adjust the center channel sound levels? When a stereo system is trying to decode a Dolby signal, usually the vocals are too soft. Does the Playbar have discreet front LCR channels? or is it a stereo system?

    For those that wonder why you can’t use the Play 5 for surround: the Playbar uses the 5GHZ frequency to send the signal to the rear speakers. Only the Play 3 is dual band. The Play 5 only works on the 2.4GHZ frequency. In other words is a hardware limitation.

  • Eddy

    Will the bar let you adjust the center channel sound levels? When a stereo system is trying to decode a Dolby signal, usually the vocals are too soft. Does the Playbar have discreet front LCR channels? or is it a stereo system?

    For those that wonder why you can’t use the Play 5 for surround: the Playbar uses the 5GHZ frequency to send the signal to the rear speakers. Only the Play 3 is dual band. The Play 5 only works on the 2.4GHZ frequency. In other words is a hardware limitation.

  • joe

    Is the tv sync issue resolved just for the playbar, or has sonos fixed it for all possible speaker setups? I would be interested in using a pair of play 3’s or 5’s for the TV. Tried it before and the results were terrible.

    • Eddy

      I have a ZP-120 connected to my Roku box and I have no problems with the audio being synced with the video. The Playbar will work in a similar way, it will be connected directly to the TV, so there won’t be any delay. Delay in audio occurs when the signal is wireless.

  • Andrew

    Thumbs down SONOS!

    I have invested heavily in two Play5’s and a sub, and what I hear now is I can’t use my Play5’s with the Playbar. My real excitement about the Playbar has just evaporated.

    Also I have not seen a response here by SONOS to confirm there would not be any latency issues with the Play3s/Sub so Im completely suspect it wont work property.

    How disappointing that a potential winner and turned out to be completely useless for me. Im not about to invest another $800 to get Play3’s just to purchase a Playbar.

    • Andrew

      Interesting. Sonos are obviously very worried about this otherwise they wouldnt move my comment well down from the top of this list and out of site…arrhh image control! :-)

      • http://www.sonos.com/support Sonos Support Team

        Andrew,

        Comment positioning is determined by ranks, we haven’t moved your response down but rather other comments have moved up.

        In answer to your question about the PLAY:5s, the PLAY:5 wireless hardware does not support surround sound functionality and firmware cannot be updated to support
        it. PLAY:5 was designed to be our best all-in-one music player and is
        perfect for use as a standalone unit or combined in stereo pair mode.

        PLAY:3 was designed to deliver great sound as a stand-alone music player – it also has electronics that are optimized for surround sound, which, coupled with a
        smaller form factor and mounting hardware makes it/them convenient to use as
        surround speakers.

        I hope this answers your question.

        Sonos Support

        • Nemo

          I have 2 play5’s and a subwoofer. I am not happy with this answer from Sonos. It is a rip off…

          • biff

            I’m the same.

        • aydincan

          I agree! It would be really waste of money to use Play:5 as surround / satellite speakers.

        • Frostydowns

          But this would be abolished if I linked them with a LAN cable?

          I just brought a play bar thinking my 2 play 5’s could work with it.

          I currently have them in separate groups, and have the 2 play’5s at the back, I have the playbar plugged into my computer and used the lip sync feature on the playbar to get rid of the feedback, It sounds good, but, I think I’m missing out with the whole surround sound, I’m yet to fork out more money for some play 3’s, I might used the play 5’s for the side sound to give tru ambience.

          I might have to go ahead and plug line in to both my rear speakers and manually set these on my PC.

          I would be happy if you released an update to allow us to use a LAN cable to connect everything, at least it’s SOMETHING and users such as myself don’t feel ripped off, because sono ISN’T the cheapest by a long shot.

    • aydincan

      I think you don’t need to worry about it. Since 2xPlay:5 units + SUB sounds awesome. I am currently testing a single Play:5 unit + SUB vs Playbar + SUB and I am still not sure which one to keep. They both sound awesome in different ways.

    • Andrew

      Bit the bullett and bought the lot! Very happy now with the system!

  • Cinelliman

    I just spent two hours watching TV with my new Playbar and Sub. The lip-synch issue IS A BIG PROBLEM. Had to turn off my Playbar and turn on my TV Speakers just to keep my sanity. I am sending this $700 mistake back to Amazon tomorrow.

  • philron

    I am mainly interested in improving TV sound, especially dialogue, due to unwanted sound going to neighbors. I am hoping to be able to turn down the volume if the sound is better. Would I be better off with a playbar or with a play 3 or 5 (I assume I have to get a connect for the play 3 or 5).

    • http://www.sonos.com/support Sonos Support Team

      Hello Philron,

      The PLAYBAR surround sound setup will require two PLAY 3 units to
      be used as the rear speakers. The PLAY 5 units are not compatible with the
      PLAYBAR surround sound setup. The PLAY 5 wireless hardware does not support surround sound functionality and firmware cannot be updated to support it.

  • M Tech

    Can the Playbar use a Sonos Connect or Connect Amp to power surrounds? In other words, can a 5.1 system be created using 1 Playbar, 1 Sonos Sub, 1 Sonos Connect to power existing in wall speakers? If Sonos can’t configure this way, there is no way 90% of my clients will be able to make the jump to Sonos for home theatre. Is it even possible through a firmware upgrade in the future?

    • http://www.sonos.com/support Sonos Support Team

      Hello,

      The SONOS CONNECT and CONNECT:AMP cannot unfortunately be used as part of the PLAYBAR’s surround sound setup. The CONNECT and CONNECT:AMP’s wireless hardware does not support surround sound functionality and firmware cannot be updated to support it. I would please look over the link for more information on how the SONOS PLAYBAR works and how the surround sound setup will work.

      http://www.sonos.com/shop/products/playbar

    • Dave

      Any update on this? I have the exact same concern. I have a CONNECT:AMP powering 2 ceiling speakers which would be perfect as surrounds with the PLAYBAR. Is this possible? maybe a future firmware upgrade for CONNECT:AMP?

  • Wjpltp

    While you can’t use 5 ‘s with the playbar for surround, can you use play 5s and playbar grouped for music

  • Wjpltp

    Can you please answer my question While you can’t use 5 ‘s with the playbar for surround, can you use play 5s and playbar grouped for music

    • http://www.sonos.com/support Sonos Support Team

      Hello,

      In answer to your question about the PLAY:5s, the PLAY:5 wireless hardware does not support surround sound functionality and firmware cannot be updated to support
      it. PLAY:5 was designed to be our best all-in-one music player and is
      perfect for use as a standalone unit or combined in stereo pair mode.

  • NeilinAus

    I have just purchased a play bar and so far so good, I’m impressed. BUT I can’t get ANY sound from bluray? I have read that the playbar doesn’t support dots which is apparently the sound from bluray tracks (which does seem strange that a modern device like this doesn’t support the most modern media sound process) but shouldn’t I still be getting sound when playing a Blu-ray Disc?
    At present I get no sound at all when playing from bluray, is this correct or does it sound lie a connection / setup issue.
    Thanks.

    • http://www.sonos.com/support Sonos Support Team

      Hello,

      Please make sure the bluray player is connected to the television first and not directly into the PLAYBAR. Also make sure the protective caps on the optical cable are removed from both end of the cable. If all this checks out I would recommend contacting SONOS Support by phone so they can investigate this further with you. I will attach the SONOS Contact information as well, and if you have to call please have access to the SONOS System.

      Please make sure the television in use in not on the incompatible list here: https://sonos.custhelp.com/app/answers/detail/a_id/1931

      Also see the setup requirements for the PLAYBAR to make sure a supported setup is in use:https://sonos.custhelp.com/app/answers/detail/a_id/1913

      SONOS Support Contact Information: http://www.sonos.com/support

  • Barry O’Brien/Oakland

    I’ve now been told by Sonos product info (via telephone) that Playbar will send tv audio to my Play5 units in two other rooms and would be in sync–all possible if Playbar is added to my current group of devices. Is this correct? A Sonos tech in call last night (on another issue) said tv audio would NOT be in sync on the Play5 units. I have not yet purchased the Playbar and am trying to make sure it can do what I want.

    • http://www.sonos.com/support Sonos Support Team

      With a grouped PLAY:5, there will be a delay between the PLAYBAR audio and the PLAY:5’s audio (the PLAY:5 will be a bit behind, approximately 70ms). This isn’t too large a difference, but if you can hear both units at once, the delay will be noticeable.

      This FAQ goes into more detail on why this is (check towards the bottom in the Latency and Lip Sync Delays section): https://sonos.custhelp.com/app/answers/detail/a_id/1966/. Keep in mind that the delay applies to other Sonos units grouped with the PLAYBAR when it’s playing TV audio. This won’t happen with players bonded to the PLAYBAR (like surround PLAY:3s) or when the PLAYBAR is playing music instead of TV audio.

  • Ped

    I have rear speakers installed, can I connect the playbar and these speakers using a sonos amp and get a better surround experience?

  • Loner

    Is using play 3’s a lot better than using 2 play 1’s as the surrounds?