Sonos has a new speaker that starts shipping later this month, and is a significant departure from the company’s usual offerings in many ways. The all-new Sonos Roam is a compact, portable speaker with all-in-battery and Bluetooth connectivity – but still a very Sonos system team player, with WiFi streaming, multi-room features, voice assistant support, and amazingly good sound quality is.
Priced at $ 179, the Sonos ROM is really low, just over 6 inches, about 2.5 inches for both height and depth. It weighs under a pound, and is available in a matte white or black finish, similar to the Sonos in terms of tweet. The Roam is also IP67-rated, meaning it is effectively waterproof, with a resistance rating of up to 30 minutes at a depth of 1 m (3.3 ft).
Sonos has placed the control surface of the speaker at one end of the device, which includes a microphone button, volume control and a play / pause button. These are real, tactile buttons, rather than touch-sensitive surfaces like you would find on other Sonos speakers, which makes sense for the speaker that it is designed to use, and in situations where the touch controls rain. Like things can flare up. And water.
The Roam also has a power button next to the USB-C port for charging. It also provides wireless charging via a receiver found in the speaker’s base, which can be used with Sonos’ own upcoming magnetic charge adapter (sold separately), or any standard Qi-powered wireless charger .
In addition to WiFi streaming, the Sonos ROM can also connect to any device via Bluetooth 5.0. It also features AirPlay 2 when connecting to Apple devices over WiFi, and it works out of the box with Spotify Connect. The built-in battery is rated for up to 10 hours of playback on a full charge, according to Sonos, and can also offer up to 10-day standby mode.
Design and performance
It is the smallest speaker released by Sonos, and is definitely a big plus when it comes to devices in this category. The dimensions make it feel like a slightly longer can of Red Bull, which should give you some sense of how portable it is. Unlike Sonos’ first portable speakers with built-in batteries, the Sonos Move, the ROM actually feels like it is designed to be thrown in a bag and brought with you when needed.
Despite its small size, the Sonos Roam delivers impressive sound – probably the best I’ve yet found for a portable speaker in this size class. Inside, it manages to pack in dual amplifiers, a tweeter, and a separate custom racetrack mid-woofer, which Sonos developed with loyalty to help deliver both lows and mids that are normally smaller Speakers are spared. The ROM quality is very loud while you probably expect it, while keeping the audio quality clear and distortion free at the same time.
One of Roam’s finest sound quality features the Sonos Automatic Trueplay Tech, which best suits audio in its surroundings and actively. This feature requires that the mic be enabled to work, but it is worth having in most settings, and makes a big difference when streaming in Bluetooth and WiFi mode. It also helps to adjust the speaker when it is switched from horizontal to vertical orientation, and is one of the main reasons it rotates above its weight relative to other speakers of this size and price range.
The Room will be the winner based on audio quality alone, but with the additional Sonos system-specific features it truly embodies a true-class leader. These include a standby mode that protects the battery while keeping the ROM available for your system for WiFi streaming via the Sonos app (easy, and also optional because you can power the power button for five seconds to truly Can power off and even conserve your charge. Now, which is great for traveling).
One of Roopam’s truly amazing capabilities is the hands-off feature that passes playback of whatever you’re using to listen to the closest Sonos speakers in your system when you long press the play / pause button Huh. It works almost like magic, and if you are walking around the house and the yard is handy with walking around in your pocket, this is a great orator superpower.
Sonos waited a long time to release a portable speaker suited to his first trip, but he clearly used that time wisely. The Sonos Roam is the most thoughtfully designed, feature-rich and best-looking portable speaker you can get for under $ 200 (and better than many more expensive options at that). Even if you don’t already have a Sonos system to use it, this is an easy option if you’re in the market for a portable, rugged Bluetooth speaker – and if you already have a Sonos convert If you are, then the decision becomes very easy.