Sonos is a strong presence in the soundbar market with the ARC and Beam soundbars, but the Beam is starting to fall behind some of the competition. As a result, Sonos has introduced the Beam 2 which adds some features that bring it up to date.
New Features on Sonos Beam 2 Soundbar
Dolby Atmos: Sonos has added two speakers dedicated to the Dolby height channels (although the added speakers aren’t vertically mounted). To provide the height effects, the Sonos 2 employs virtual audio processing algorithms to provide the needed height sound effect.
Enhanced Sound: In addition to Dolby Atmos, the Beam 2 includes more audio processing power and redesigned phased speaker arrays which steer and localize sound for a more immersive listening experience than was possible on the previous Beam.
New Speaker Grill: An updated polycarbonate perforated grille supports the sound coming from the speakers more efficiently.
HDMI-eARC: This is a connection upgrade that allows the Beam 2 to accept Dolby TrueHD and Dolby Atmos signals from TVs that have an HDMI-eARC connection. If your TV doesn’t have eARC, but only ARC, the Sonos Beam 2 Soundbar is also compatible with that, just as with the previous Beam.
More Secure Set-Up: The addition of NFC makes setup even easier than on the previous Beam. Open the Sonos app, follow the setup steps, and tap your phone to Beam when prompted.
Sustainable Packaging: The product packaging includes a premium uncoated kraft paper, a gift box made of 97% sustainable paper, and no single-use foam.
Apple AirPlay 2: Send sound directly from your iPhone, iPad, or Mac, then ask Siri to turn it up from your device.
Features Carried Over from Sonos Beam 1
In addition to the new features, the core features from the Sonos Beam 1 are also included.
Compact Size: The Sonos Beam/Beam 2 is 25.6-inches wide, 2.7-inches high, and 3.9-inches deep making it an easy fit below most TVs or wall mounting via an optional wall mounting bracket.
Speakers: In addition to the two added speakers for Dolby Atmos on the Beam 2, there are speakers for the L, C, R channels as well as three passive radiators for added low-frequency support.
Connections: 1 HDMI-ARC (Beam 2 adds eARC), 1 Ethernet Port, and a Power receptacle. WiFi is also built-in. Bluetooth is not supported.
Sonos App: The Sonos App (S2 version) is not only used for setup but provides access to several popular music streaming services as well as Sonos Radio. The Sonos app also includes a Speech Enhancement setting that is carried over to the Beam 2.
Multi-Room Audio: Sonos products provide wireless multi-room audio. This means that in addition to using the Beam/Beam 2 for watching TV, you can also use it as part of a multi-room audio system via wireless connection with other compatible Sonos speaker products.
TV Control: You can also control some basic functions on your TV with voice if the TV supports HDMI-CEC (Consumer Electronics Control).
Optional Surround Speakers: Wireless surround speakers can be added. The following Sonos speakers are compatible: Sonos One (including SL), Sonos Five, Play:1, Play:3, and Play:5 (Gen 2). You can also use Sonos Amp to power in-wall, in-ceiling, or other traditional wired speakers as surrounds.
Optional Subwoofer: Just as with the Beam 1, the Beam 2 is compatible with all Sonos Subwoofer models.
Pricing and Availability
The Sonos Beam 2 is available in black or white and is priced a $449.00 at Sonos.com. It can be purchased directly from Sonos or other authorized dealers.
Prices for the optional surround speakers and subwoofers vary depending on the model.
Another available soundbar option is the Sonos ARC ($899).
Sonos has recently raised the prices on many of its wireless speaker products.