I love my Sonos wireless sound system. From my iPhone, I can tell Sonos to stream music from iTunes, Spotify, Pandora, Songza, and other services directly to any of the Play:3 wireless speakers in our home. The music sounds great, and the convenience of wireless speakers you can locate anywhere is hard to beat.
The Sonos Soundbar is designed to fit right in with your existing setup. In theory, all you do is put it in front of the t.v. (or hang it on the wall), attach the power cable, and hook up an optical sound source (like our Tivo or your BluRay player). The Sonos Soundbar knows where you’ve put it, and it automatically configures itself to give you the best simulated surround sound experience possible. (Simulated, I say, because Sonos Soundbar, like all soundbars, is using tiny, highly-focused speakers to stream rear channel information to the back of your room. When executed well, this kind of technology can deliver a surprisingly deep and well-defined sound field, despite the lack of rear speakers.)
That said: if you want *real* surround sound, that’s possible, too — you just put a pair of Play:3 speakers in the back of the room and set them to deliver the right and left rear channels, giving you a quick and easy way to set up a true surround sound. And, when you’re not using it to enjoy television sound, you can stream music to the Soundbar, using it just like you would a Play:3 or Play:5 speaker. (You can manage all this very easily from the iPhone or iPad apps, using just a tap or two.)
This all sounds great on paper … but the proof of solutions like this one is in the hearing. But if the Soundbar sounds as good and operates as well as my other Sonos products, this is definitely the solution I’ve been looking for.
When I track one down to play with, I’ll let you know. Meantime, if you’re curious about Sonos, readers tell me my post on what you need to buy to get started is better and clearer than any info they’ve found, even at Sonos.com!