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Sonos Ray is a cheaper soundbar option for the rest of us

And there's an upcoming voice assistant from Sonos, too

Sonos Ray

Sonos soundbars are pretty pricey right? Well no longer – Sonos Ray is a new soundbar from the audio giant that costs $279/£279 and features optical rather than HDMI ARC for maximum compatibility. But that’s really where it’s feature-skimp ends. OK, so there’s no Dolby Atmos like on the Sonos Arc or Beam Gen 2, but you still get Dolby Digital and DTS Digital Surround support as well as streaming compatibility with Apple’s AirPlay 2.

This then, is the Sonos soundbar for those of us who don’t have stacks to spend or who want a cheaper Sonos-compatible bar for a second TV. The compact soundbar has actually been designed to be placed in a cabinet should you wish and, of course, you can put it on a TV stand, too.

Custom-designed guides project the sound (from four Class-D amplifiers, two full-range midwoofers and two tweeters) between your walls, while there’s also a new bass system inside Ray, too. Speech enhancement tech means clear dialogue, while there’s a Night Sound mode to reduce the intensity as you’d expect. Setup is via the Sonos app’s Trueplay function, and you can control it via the app, your existing TV remote, via AirPlay controls

Sonos Ray

You can easily control Ray with your existing TV remote, the Sonos app, Apple AirPlay 2 and more. Add a pair of Ones to your home cinema setup for surround sound or connect to any Sonos speaker for multi-room listening. Naturally you can multi-room with any other Sonos speakers, or even add a pair of Sonos Ones to the same room for surround listening. Sonos Ray is available from 7 June 2022.

Sonos Ray

Also new from the streaming giant is Sonos’ own voice assistant which is designed to be quicker than using a third-party assistant for basic commands. Sonos Voice Control – as it’s called – works on every voice-capable Sonos speaker and processes requests entirely on the device, so nothing is sent into the cloud.

Sonos Voice Control is compatible with Sonos Radio, Apple Music, Amazon Music, Deezer, and Pandora at launch and will be available in the US in June, France later this year – but while it will come to the UK and other places, there’s no date for this as yet.

Sonos Roam

Elsewhere, Sonos has also announced two new colours for its super Roam speaker – in addition to black and white, there’s now three new colours – olive, wave and sunset.