Sonos PLAY 5 iPod Docking Station
Review: Sonos PLAY 5 iPod Docking Station Review
Works With iPhone in Phone Mode.
Small and Portable.
LCD Display Screen.
It’s big, bold and very expensive. Plus, the name ‘Wireless Hi-Fi’ promises an awful lot. Our intrepid reviewer gets his greasy mitts all over the product formerly known as S5 and gives us the lowdown. Is it worth the money? Does it live up to its boasts? Is it really a brand new product unlike any other? All this and more will be answered, so stick around...
When your asking price is as high as this, you’d better be packing more than just a sexy design job. Fortunately, the PLAY 5 makes use of five (count them) fully integrated speakers, all of which are backed up by custom-built digital amps.
You can place these speakers in individual rooms of your house and wirelessly stream music from your laptop, desktop, tablet PC, iPod or Smart Phone. Or, if you like, you can probably use them all in one room as an enormous surround sound system and pummel yourself with your favorite songs, its up to you.
Each speaker is powerful enough to fill a room up on its own and all the connection points are fully wireless. The PLAY 5 is bang up to date and each individual unit has been designed to sit in the corner of a room and take up very little space.
If this were an ordinary speaker system, you might be forgiven for thinking that the £300+ price tag is pretty excessive. However, this is a speaker system that will wirelessly connect your music throughout the house and give you ultimate control over what you listen to and how you listen to it. So when you consider it in those terms, it is actually not a bad price at all.
To be honest, I was totally shocked by how easy this product is to set up. When you consider how many individual devices it can connect to, it really is a pleasant surprise that this system can be ready to use in about 15-20 minutes. Once you’ve connected the device to your router and installed the driver software onto your computer, you select a device to use as a controller (most users go for their phones) and away you go. It really is that simple.
The sound quality can range from reasonably low and unobtrusive to eardrum-splittingly loud and volcanic, but never loses quality at either extreme. The subwoofer driver makes the bass so hard you feel as if you’ve been punched in the chest and all the sounds that come through are crystal clear. This is a truly excellent speaker system and an absolute joy to use.
Though the critics dismiss this as, to quote one Amazon reviewer, “an over hyped convenience product” this review must politely disagree.
The PLAY 5 is a step forward in home speaker technology and helps to legitimize digital music as more than a mere portable accessory. The speakers sound great (though, for sure, they aren’t on Bose’s level) and the ease of use and set up is a real plus. For my money, this is a terrific product.
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Dispatched from and sold by Amazon.co.uk. Gift-wrap available.
Availability: Usually dispatched within 1-2 business days
Honest reviews of the Sonos PLAY 5 iPod Docking Station from previous customers
As usual, we headed over to our chums at Amazon and collated their user reviews for this particular product, in order to give you a more balanced idea of this model and how well it works.
Amazingly, out of the 77 reviews posted between the time of the product’s release and the time of writing, 71 of those reviews were 4/5 or 5/5 scores. Only 4 reviews offered anything less than 3/5.
‘NDA’ (a Top 1000 reviewer) gave a perfect 5/5 score and praised the PLAY 5 on its ease of use and setup as well as its exceptionally user-friendly computer-interface. (S)he went on to gush over almost every aspect of this product, including the handset used (a CR200) and the masterful sound reproduction.
‘S. Knowles’ (5/5) agreed, saying “my kids and wife love it because they can get straight to their music without any technical knowledge. I've never had any problems with Sonos - it just works” as you probably know, this site favors easy to use, pretense free tech, so we love to hear feedback of this nature.
‘C.J Louwrens’ also offered a perfect score, saying, “The reality was even better than what I anticipated. The system was easy to set up and works flawlessly from day one”. There are 71 more where that came from.
Over on the negative side, ‘Mr. Allan Bennett’ (3/5) said that the system was “OK sounding” but that it “lacks warmth”. ‘JR’ (2/5) was highly critical of the software saying that it was an otherwise good product but was “let down” by the interface.
‘RG’ (1/5) commented that this product was not, at the time of writing (August 2011), compatible with MAC OSX Lion, however I can now confirm that Sonos 3.8 has fixed compatibility with both Lion and Android 4.0 as of May 2012.
We encourage you to read them prior to making your final purchasing decision.