In-Depth Review of Sonos Play:1

Sonos is a well-known brand when it comes to wireless speaker products. One of their most affordable speakers is the Sonos Play:1, which incidentally works with Alexa devices from Amazon. That means you can add voice control to your Sonos quality speakers.

We'll go over what's to like about the Sonos Play: 1, which is an introductory product. Sonos has come up with a complete array of speakers since.

What is the Sonos Play:1?

The Play: 1 is a companion speaker to the Alexa line of smart speakers from Amazon (Echo, Echo Dot, and others). It is a wireless audio speaker system, not a competitor of Alexa enabled products.

It lets you experience the Sonos audio quality minus the budget dinging price tag. The exterior of this speaker is sleek, and it matches a lot of interior decors.

The sound quality is precisely what you would expect from the Sonos brand. It’s pretty surprising for such a small speaker to pack so much sound quality.

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You can pair it with another Play:1 or with a much more advanced Play:3 to get that real full stereo sound. Of course, if you want to push the sound quality up even further, then you can add a sound bar (e.g., Sonos Beam or Sonos Playbar).

Let’s go over what’s to like about the Sonos:1 and we will also go over the not so good stuff about this speaker system along the way as well.

The Play:1 Design

Sonos comes up with some of the most attractive designs which can improve your interior's aesthetics. The Sonos Play:1, Play:3, and Play:5 all look pretty good and blends well with a lot of interior decors.

The solid black plastic on top is smooth and is a matte finish. It stands upright. The grille, of course, is excellent quality as you might expect from Sonos. The controls are at the top of the speaker. You can use the controls on top or control its settings wirelessly. It fits in most areas since it doesn’t have a huge footprint.

Note that the Play:1 comes in either black or white. The black colored Play:1 blends better with interiors. It will look great in your bedroom, living room, and kitchen.

Now, here’s the thing—the Play:1 is humidity resistant, unlike Echo devices. That means you can get another Sonos Play:1 speaker and put it in your bathroom.

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Build Quality

Taking the Sonos Play:1 out of the box, you will immediately get a feel for the speaker’s build quality. It's reliable, no flimsy edges. Inspecting the controls on top, they feel firm when you press them. They don't feel cheap like they will break if you push hard enough.

This speaker is outfitted with a midrange woofer as well as a tweeter. Note that this is a mono speaker, which could be a downside for some audiophiles.

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If you are looking for a better set of speakers, then we suggest that you go up a notch in Sonos’s product line and get the Play:3. However, that will also mean you have to cough up some more cash.

Going back to the button controls a little bit, you have a mute button there which functions as a pause and play button. There is a status light right there as well. It also comes with volume rocker buttons too.

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Double tap the pause/play/mute button, and you skip to the next track.

Note that this is a heavy speaker. That speaks volumes about its build quality, but it also gives you second thoughts about wall mounting the Play:1. They’re better off on shelves, counters tops, tables, and other surfaces.

Performance

Setting up the Sonos Play:1 is easy, but I wouldn't say it is a no brainer. If you're tech savvy, then it won't be much of a chore.

But for those who are setting up this kind of speaker equipment for the first time, they will still find it easy. They just have to follow the prompts, especially when you're trying out the voice commands for the first time.

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If you have set up other Sonos speakers before then the Play:1 should be a cinch. Tell the app that you want to add a speaker (again, voice command).

You will then be prompted to press the play and volume up buttons when prompted. And then that’s it.

You connect the Play:1 like any other wireless speaker. You can also go for a wired connection if you prefer that. It has Ethernet port at the back so you can connect it directly to your router.

Now, what if you have more than 1 or an array of Sonos speakers for a full surround sound; what now? It would be better to connect that kind of setup via WiFi.

However, if you want to go wired, you’re going to have to connect them via a Sonos Bridge, which is around $50 (-ish). No, you can’t just use a third party Ethernet bridge.

Note that your Sonos speakers will be connected via a mesh network—a separate wireless network dedicated to music streaming. That might sound redundant since you already have WiFi in your home.

But the Sonos mesh network has low latency and is highly reliable. It earns this speaker system a huge thumbs-up when it comes to playback quality.

Supported Music Streaming Services

Other than your music from Amazon Cloud Player, you can also stream music from a lot of other sources. You can stream music from:

That’s already a good number of popular music streaming services. However, there are lots more. Unfortunately, it doesn't support some of the high profile music streaming services like iTunes Radio, Xbox Music, and Google Music All Access.

Pros

  • Price
  • Superb payback quality
  • Solid build quality
  • Works well with Amazon’s Alexa enabled devices
  • Downsides

  • Midrange subwoofer and tweeter
  • It’s a bit heavy, which means wall mounting might become an issue
  • You have to configure it to find your music (that could get fixed in a coming app update).
  • CONCLUSION

    The Sonos Play:1 is a good fit for those trying Sonos speakers for the first time. It’s an introductory speaker that lets you try the Sonos experience and decide for yourself if it is the one for you or not without hacking away at your budget.

    (Last Updated On: May 19, 2019)
    john andrews
     

    HI, John Andrew here. I’ve been an audiophile since I was a little kid. I’m an original member of myaudiolover . It emerged as a way for me to share my passion and knowledge for audio technology. If you’re looking for tips, techniques, and insights about audio-tech, that can enable your productions that professional edge, then MyAudioLover is the place for you!

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