The Sonos Playbase is the only system here without a subwoofer included. So, for the sake of this shootout, we paired it with the Sonos Sub, which then required Wi-Fi connectivity, as the Playbase has to be connected to a network with any other Sonos speakers you intend to use.
You’ll also like to know that there’s no physical remote too; Sonos wants you to rely solely on their app for control. However, you can setup a generic IR remote for more convenience.
Design-wise, it’s meant to take the weight of your television so you can place the Playbase right underneath your television instead of in front of it. Because none of the sound is meant to go into your television cabinet, special care has been made in terms of alignment of drivers so all the sound is projected to the sides. Micro perforations of varying sizes cover the speaker from rear to front, allowing for
In our audio testing, we found that the system has a pretty good sense of naturalness and a nice sense of imaging. For example, on a recording of Correnteza by Ana Caram, the harpsicord that starts the track is the chirping of birds and the rustle of bells. There’s good depth in the bass too, and this is full and lush.
On our formal audio test tracks, this strength in the lower ranges again showed itself best with Hotel California by The Eagles. There’s slightly less clarity in the strings here compared to the Samsung HW-K950, and the vocals can be slightly overpowered by the thumping bass at times, but the piece retains good energy throughout, making for an enjoyable listen.
In terms of our movie testing, the system did best on the Mad Max test track, with good clarity in the mids and lower bass ranges matching clip – vocals, engine noises, and even the crunching noise of boots on rubble came through clearly. However, imaging wasn’t as strong as the other Atmos-enabled speakers in this shootout.