Sonos Play1 speakers and system

My name is Bill. I decided to conduct a review on the Sonos brand Play1 speakers and system since it is a reasonably cost effective solution for people who want easy and quick music, without a lot of fuss and equipment. Buckle up for the ride....

I live in Ohio, USA and my neighbor Jeff wanted some kind of music system for his back deck. He knew I had a "nice" stereo, and hoped I could help him with setting up "wireless" speakers for entertaining guests on the back deck of his house. A very fine deck which is spacious, with an outdoor large dining table and umbrella, a fire pit, a grill and seating for about 14 people. It is big. Jeff is past 60yrs old and he has almost zero experience with wireless anything, does not really know what a wireless router does or if he had his own wireless network. He does have a smart phone. Later, we did establish he has his own wireless network via At&T.

So I suggested we start with a big box store in our area of Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio, the only real place to shop for anything audio...Best Buy. I had heard about Sonos music systems, but never installed them or owned them. I told Jeff we should check them out. He agreed and off we went.

When we arrived the salesman was knowledgeable about Sonos and he answered all our questions, mostly mine.
Short story is that we left with 2 Sonos Play1 speakers. Each speaker is about 6 1/2 inches high and just 4 1/2 inches wide. They are hefty at about 4 lbs because each speaker contains a digital amplifer and must be plugged into an AC outlet. They connect via a wireless connection to a wireless network OR by ethernet cable to a router.
They are very attractive with a wrap around steel grill. Jeff paid $199 for EACH speaker.

Now I found out by asking Jeff what he wanted in a music system and I decided I could probably give him great advice. By doing some simple research I found he could have access to much more music than he owned on his reel to reel tape machine, his record albums and his CDs by subscribing to Spotify which is the main way Sonos users play music. Although there are many choices which including many music files supported via computer files. MP3, WMA, ACC, OGG, AIFF and WAV. One can use a computer HD or NAS system, ITUNES and can stream Tidal, Pandora, Rhapsody, SiriusXM , SoundCloud, TuneIn on Apple Music and Amazon Music, Deezer and Google Play Music.

Now when setting up the PLAY1 speakers the only control we used in Jeff’s music system was his Samsung phone. With the phone we can control the music source, which in his case was Spotify via his wireless network.
We had to download the Sonos CONNECT app and the SPOTIFY app on his phone FIRST. After which the setup instructions were followed on his phone. We had a little trouble with communication between his network, the Play1 speakers and his phone app CONNECT. Since we had a problem, we had to use the ethernet cable to connect each Play1 speaker to the router, one at a time. Once we did this, the phone recognized each PLAY1 speaker one at a time. That is how one has to setup the speakers, one at a time.

This is the official 4 step process. But like I said, we had to go deeper.
Sonos has a great website for finding solutions to setup and play problems or questions. Also Sonos has created youtube videos here.

One of the best things about the Sonos system is that one can connect as many speakers as you want. One can connect one speaker or 99 speakers. Jeff wanted two speaker systems, one in his house and one on the deck. So off to Best But he went to purchase two more PLAY1 speakers.

The quality of the music is much better than I expected for a two way speaker. Each speaker has two drivers, that are each driven by a digital amplifer. The sound is smooth, clear and neutral. The bass is not anything near what you can expect from a full sized bookshelf speaker, but for $199, it is acceptable. For about $299 one could opt for the PLAY3 speakers that have more full bass. Jeff decided he wanted one PLAY3 in the middle of his PLAY1 stereo speakers for his living room. So off to Best Buy he went again.

Jeff paid $1,100 total for his deck stereo speakers and his 3 piece living room music system. He also will pay $9.99 every month for an unlimited supply of music. It sounds great and he is happy. One more thing for Jeff to consider. He will need 5 speaker stands total. He plans to cover his outdoor stereo speakers, which will be placed under the overhang of his house atop his speaker stands with upside down flower pots to protect them from weather when he is not listening to them. These are NOT weatherproof speakers.
Right now he is very happy.
My neighbor added Sanus speaker stands specifically made for the Sonos PLAY1 speakers. These are a great match and look handsome.