Sonos’ cheapest soundbar ever packs voice control and AirPlay 2 support | Cult of Mac

Sonos’ cheapest soundbar ever packs voice control and AirPlay 2 support

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The new Sonos Ray soundbar will sell for $279.
The new Sonos Ray soundbar will sell for $279.
Photo: Sonos

After leaks in April first revealed its impeding release, Sonos officially unveiled its lowest-priced Soundar, the Ray, on Wednesday.

The compact speaker features AirPlay 2 support for streaming from Apple devices as well as “Hey Sonos” voice control integrated with Apple Music.

Compact Sonos Ray soundbar offers an affordable option with AirPlay 2 support and voice control

At $279, the Sonos Ray is the company’s least-expensive soundbar. It goes on sale June 7 in the U.S., Europe and several other regions. Leaks in April revealed most of its characteristics, but not its official name. It was codenamed “Fury.”

So now the full Sonos soundbar lineup consists of the Ray for $279, the second-generation Beam for $449 and the top-shelf Arc for $899.

Sonos said the Ray’s “advanced processing” creates a “surprisingly wide soundstage.” And AirPlay 2 support allows for audio to be wirelessly streamed to it from Apple devices like iPhone, iPad and Mac.

The device contains four class-D digital amplifiers, two mid-woofers, two tweets and a bass-reflex system to cover a full range of frequencies.

And the Sonos app helps you fine-tune your audio, allowing you to make dialogue crisper, for example.

Options-wise, you can buy a Sonos Ray Wall Mount and a surround-sound set with the Ray plus additional speakers.

“Hey Sonos” voice control

Sonos also reiterated plans to launch its own voice control system called Sonos Voice for its speakers, allowing users to say “Hey Sonos” to control compatible music services. Those include Apple Music, Amazon Music, Deezer, Pandora and Sonos Radio. Sonos speakers already support Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant.

The company said the new voice control feature rolls out in the U.S. starting June 1, with additional markets to follow. Sonos emphasized privacy, saying that all “Hey Sonos” voice requests will be processed only on the device, with no recording or data sent to the cloud.

In addition, the company said its Sonos Roam speaker with AirPlay 2 support is now available in three new color options: Olive, Wave, and Sunset.

The Sonos Ray soundbar is available at the company website for preorder.

Price: $279

Where to preorder: Sonos