Sonos Arc: Soundbar Excellence

PC Magazine|July 2020

Sonos Arc: Soundbar Excellence
Sonos continues to expand its home-theater speaker selection with the Arc soundbar. The Arc combines the voice assistant support of the Sonos Beam ($399) with the power of the Sonos Playbar ($599) in a single package for $799, adding Dolby Atmos compatibility with directional tweeters. It’s an impressive soundbar on its own, and you can easily integrate it into an existing Sonos multi-room system or pair it with other Sonos speakers for a truly impressive surround-sound setup. Its terrific audio performance and flexibility earn it our Editors’ Choice for high-end soundbars.
WILL GREENWALD

DESIGN AND FEATURES

The Arc features sleek curves for a more modern look than the angular Playbar. Available in black or white, it’s a 45-inch-long oval cylinder measuring 4.3 inches wide and 3.5 inches tall, with a rounded metal grille that runs around the entire front and top. The only flat surfaces are the back panel, so the soundbar can be mounted on a wall, and the bottom, which holds a wide rubber foot to keep it in place.

The top panel has three touch-sensitive buttons for volume down, volume up, and play/pause. These controls sit in the center of the soundbar near the back, and the microphone indicator is in the back-right corner. An additional indicator, which lights up when you use a voice assistant, sits front and center.

All ports on the speaker are in a rectangular recess on the back, including an HDMI port for connecting to your TV over ARC or eARC, an Ethernet port, and a power connector. A pairing button used for the setup process also sits here. The speaker has no optical input, but Sonos includes an optical audio adapter, in case you want to use that instead of HDMI.

The Arc doesn’t have a remote, though it features an infrared sensor and repeater so it can take commands from your TV remote. It works directly with your TV over eARC to seamlessly accept the volume commands sent from your TV’s remote. You can also use the app to control volume.

As for audio, the Arc features eight elliptical woofers and three angled silk-dome tweeters powered by 11 class-D amplifiers. The drivers are arranged to create a 5.0-channel sound field, adjusting to the acoustics of the room by using the speaker’s built-in microphone and Sonos’ Trueplay tuning feature.

Sonos Arc

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July 2020