Should I get Sonos Arc? - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 24 Old 06-17-2020, 08:35 PM - Thread Starter
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Should I get Sonos Arc?

Hi everyone. I went to Best Buy today to listen to soundbars. I just returned my Harman Kardon Enchant 1300 + Sub (technical issues and just wasn’t impressed with sound).

I fell in love with the Sonos Playbar + Sub. The sound was exactly what I’ve been wanting. BUT I really want Apple Airplay integrated for music. Playbar does not have that capability. The Beam did not sound nearly as good as the Playbar. Unfortunately, they didn’t have an Arc to test, but all I see is raving reviews and how it’s a huge upgrade to the Playbar.

Here’s my issue... I have a one year old 70” LG 4K TV but it does not have eARC. I do have an XBOX ONE SERIES X that can output Dolby Atmos but if I’m running the Xbox to the soundbar, there’s no way to get that picture on the TV, correct??

Also, I fell in love with the sub paired with the Playbar, but my budget would not allow a sub with the Arc for now.

I feel like my best bet is to bring the Sonos Arc home, carefully unpackage, and test it out. If I love it, keep it. And if not then return it.

BUT.... I would love to hear some opinions and guidance. Thanks
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post #2 of 24 Old 06-18-2020, 05:02 PM
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Those early professional reviews were all gushing over the ARC. Go over to Sonos's forums and checkout the Reddit threads. It doesn't look like people are happy with their Sonos ARCs.
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post #3 of 24 Old 06-18-2020, 05:19 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Synomenon View Post
Those early professional reviews were all gushing over the ARC. Go over to Sonos's forums and checkout the Reddit threads. It doesn't look like people are happy with their Sonos ARCs.
Thanks for the heads up! Good to know. I don’t like buying a brand new model at its release — full MSRP and often a lot of bugs. Since I don’t have a TV compatible with Atmos currently, the Arc would seem like a waste.

My #1 concern is sound quality for music. My demo with the Playbar + Sub blew me away. BUT....how would I get AirPlay for music streaming? Any ideas ?
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post #4 of 24 Old 06-18-2020, 08:22 PM
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Most don't need airplay with Sonos because Sonos has Apple music built in as one of its sources and Sonos can use music stored on your phone if that is what you are trying to do. In the sonos app you have the option to play music from your phone and of course if you have an Apple music account that can be directly played through the Sonos app. Your apple music favorites can also be stored in the Sonos favorites called My Sonos. My Sonos is pretty nice as it can have all your favorites from various services as well as your music library in one area. No going between apps.

Unfortunately we install a LOT of different sound bars and one of the main reasons people choose sonos is because of its Apple integration with Apple music. NONE of the other sound bars offer this and instead use airplay which is not as elegant or as easy. If I remember your situation with the TV in the alcove the Sonos ARC might not be a good choice anyway unless you bring everything forward a bit. I'm still not sure the Playbar or ARC will give the sound quality you want at louder volumes but it should do better than the Enchant. The sub definitely helps but is a pricey option.
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post #5 of 24 Old 06-19-2020, 03:02 PM - Thread Starter
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That’s awesome! So in my case the Playbar would be perfect then. I use Apple Music primarily, so that would work out great. And the optical connection is good for my purposes.

I loved the sound during the demo, but only with the sub and that’s an expensive addition as well.

Ellebob, I think you suggested the receiver and passive soundbar route, correct? If so, what soundbar and sub would you recommend in that same budget? (I have seen A/V Receivers pop up on slickdeals and woot that have built-in Apple Airplay for about $280. That would leave me about $450 for a bar and sub.
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post #6 of 24 Old 06-19-2020, 05:47 PM - Thread Starter
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Ordered the Playbar from Sonos, I somehow qualified for a 30% off coupon so it’s $419. And free 1 day shipping. The sub was out of stock currently, so I’ll wait on that.
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post #7 of 24 Old 06-19-2020, 08:27 PM
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If the playbar doesn't workout. I would look at the Bic speaker bar or the Dayton Audio BS41 speaker bar with a Dayton sub. Bigger is better
If I remember correctly you were looking at playing relatively loud and filling a good sized room. That means a larger speaker. The Bic bar is large but I'm not sure if it will fit in your space. You also wouldn't connect the surrounds on the bic as they are side firing and might not go good in your cubby, but you could try it. The Dayton BS41 has smaller woofers but if the BIC doesn't work I would look at that one. For the Playbar I highly recommend the sub when you can. Looking forward to seeing how you like the play bar in your home and if it plays loud enough and you like the sound.
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post #8 of 24 Old 06-22-2020, 09:47 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Ellebob View Post
If the playbar doesn't workout. I would look at the Bic speaker bar or the Dayton Audio BS41 speaker bar with a Dayton sub. Bigger is better[IMG class=inlineimg]/forum/images/smilies/biggrin.gif[/IMG]
If I remember correctly you were looking at playing relatively loud and filling a good sized room. That means a larger speaker. The Bic bar is large but I'm not sure if it will fit in your space. You also wouldn't connect the surrounds on the bic as they are side firing and might not go good in your cubby, but you could try it. The Dayton BS41 has smaller woofers but if the BIC doesn't work I would look at that one. For the Playbar I highly recommend the sub when you can. Looking forward to seeing how you like the play bar in your home and if it plays loud enough and you like the sound.
I should have the Playbar by Tuesday or Wednesday and will let you guys know.

Still wondering if the Arc would be a better choice for only $140 more. Again, I don’t have eARC and won’t be taking advantage of a lot of those features but it’s more future proof.

On the other hand, saving that $140 will help go towards the Sub which I definitely want.

$559 + tax for the Arc is pretty tempting though.
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post #9 of 24 Old 06-22-2020, 10:06 AM
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Just want to confirm I get Atoms sound from my LG apps.
Apps via Apple TV get 5.1
Tivo from OTA 5.1 sound


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
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post #10 of 24 Old 06-22-2020, 01:14 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by HurricaneGio View Post
Just want to confirm I get Atoms sound from my LG apps.
Apps via Apple TV get 5.1
Tivo from OTA 5.1 sound


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
Atmos only works if the TV has eARC. Mine has ARC only. Just bought the TV last year so not ready to make a new investment
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post #11 of 24 Old 06-22-2020, 05:35 PM
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Originally Posted by danasingleton91 View Post
Atmos only works if the TV has eARC. Mine has ARC only. Just bought the TV last year so not ready to make a new investment
Internal apps work via Arc.

HD Fury is making a dongle to allow external apps t work. Look at the thread.
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post #12 of 24 Old 06-23-2020, 04:02 PM
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I just got the Arc, sub is on the way. Didn't really do my research and very unhappy about the lack of DTS support. I watch a good amount of BluRays and feel like that is a huge disappointment. I have no previous Sonos purchases and have a C9 Earc enabled tv.

Was looking at the Q90R or potentially waiting on the Q950T, either way I would plan to upgrade my Sonos with the Ones and sub, but wondering if it's just too much of a compromise with BluRays and UHD movies.

Has anyone spent a good amount of time comparing them? It seems like the Q90R actually beats Sonos in what I have seen on the internet so far.
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post #13 of 24 Old 06-23-2020, 08:17 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by platinum_trunks View Post
I just got the Arc, sub is on the way. Didn't really do my research and very unhappy about the lack of DTS support. I watch a good amount of BluRays and feel like that is a huge disappointment. I have no previous Sonos purchases and have a C9 Earc enabled tv.

Was looking at the Q90R or potentially waiting on the Q950T, either way I would plan to upgrade my Sonos with the Ones and sub, but wondering if it's just too much of a compromise with BluRays and UHD movies.

Has anyone spent a good amount of time comparing them? It seems like the Q90R actually beats Sonos in what I have seen on the internet so far.
Yeah, the lack of DTS is surprising for what’s supposed to be such a high end soundbar. Curious about the Q90R as well.
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post #14 of 24 Old 06-23-2020, 08:29 PM - Thread Starter
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Just got my Playbar today! I’m going to give it some time before deciding for sure but here are my thoughts so far:

1) Very, very easy to setup and very user friendly. Definitely feels like an advanced technology compared to other soundbars I’ve used, even with this being several years old now.

2) The sound quality sounds great so far, although I immediately want the Sub. During my demo the Sub completely changed my opinion of getting the Playbar. With the Sub turned on I was shocked out how good it sounded in the store. I want that ASAP.

3) I am a little annoyed that I have to use the Sonos app to play music, even though it seems to work well. I’m so used to using the Apple Music app, so having to play directly from the Sonos app is a little bit of a letdown. Will take some time to see if I can get used to that. Airplay (Like the Arc or Klipsch Bar 48) would solve this issue.

4) This is a pet peeve, but I wish I could see the volume level on screen. My LG is supposed to have “Sound Sync” but I guess it’s not compatible with the Playbar. I have Logitech Harmony, so the volume control adjusts the volume on the Playbar, but there is no visual of the volume level on the TV.

Going to take some more time to play around with it (and hopefully try the TruePlay calibration tomorrow). I feel like with the Sub, I will be really happy with the sound quality. And I could learn to live with some of the functionality concerns. We’ll see...
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post #15 of 24 Old 06-24-2020, 05:06 AM
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Originally Posted by Synomenon View Post
Those early professional reviews were all gushing over the ARC. Go over to Sonos's forums and checkout the Reddit threads. It doesn't look like people are happy with their Sonos ARCs.
Not really true. The early reddit reviews were because those that had the Arc only had an issue with the bass, which was fixed by a firmware update yesterday and now they are satisfied. If you had the Arc, Sonos Sub then things were great.

I have tried the Sennheiser Ambeo, Bose 700 & Sub, Playbar, Beam and now the Arc (with Sonos Sub and two Sonos One Rears) and the Arc is the most complete system out of all of those. It blows always the Beam and Playbar.

Even my wife who could care less about audio says the same, which is quite a compliment. I am satisfied - finally!

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Last edited by GregF2; 06-24-2020 at 05:18 AM.
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post #16 of 24 Old 06-24-2020, 04:06 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Synomenon View Post
Those early professional reviews were all gushing over the ARC. Go over to Sonos's forums and checkout the Reddit threads. It doesn't look like people are happy with their Sonos ARCs.
Not really true. The early reddit reviews were because those that had the Arc only had an issue with the bass, which was fixed by a firmware update yesterday and now they are satisfied. If you had the Arc, Sonos Sub then things were great.

I have tried the Sennheiser Ambeo, Bose 700 & Sub, Playbar, Beam and now the Arc (with Sonos Sub and two Sonos One Rears) and the Arc is the most complete system out of all of those. It blows always the Beam and Playbar.

Even my wife who could care less about audio says the same, which is quite a compliment. I am satisfied - finally! [IMG class=inlineimg]/forum/images/smilies/smile.gif[/IMG]
I’ve seen comment after comment that it’s been a huge upgrade over the Playbar. For $160 more I’m wondering if I should make the switch. BUT...I feel like it’s not going to make sense in my situation.

Ceilings = 30ft tall
Side firing = I have a wall on each side of the soundbar that will be about 1’ from the ends. Seems like it will reflect like crazy and ruin any surround audio.
TV= 70” 2018 LG 4K w/HDR but from what I can tell does not have eARC.

Thoughts...?
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post #17 of 24 Old 06-25-2020, 07:58 PM
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Not really true. The early reddit reviews were because those that had the Arc only had an issue with the bass, which was fixed by a firmware update yesterday and now they are satisfied. If you had the Arc, Sonos Sub then things were great.

I have tried the Sennheiser Ambeo, Bose 700 & Sub, Playbar, Beam and now the Arc (with Sonos Sub and two Sonos One Rears) and the Arc is the most complete system out of all of those. It blows always the Beam and Playbar.

Even my wife who could care less about audio says the same, which is quite a compliment. I am satisfied - finally!
There are still a LOT of people complaining about the Arc's sound quality even after the firmware update. Either there are a lot of defective units out there or Sonos still has some work to do to make the Arc sound better. The Arc is their flagship product and yet several people have said that their Playbar or even their Beam sounds better at this point. Something isn't right.

Here are some threads on the Sonos forums. There are plenty on the Sonos subreddit as well. I've been reading these threads with interest as I am contemplating an Arc purchase myself if Sonos get this sorted out.

https://en.community.sonos.com/troub...178180-6843904

https://en.community.sonos.com/home-...10/index5.html

https://en.community.sonos.com/home-...9/index34.html
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post #18 of 24 Old 06-25-2020, 10:38 PM
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Originally Posted by GregF2 View Post
Not really true. The early reddit reviews were because those that had the Arc only had an issue with the bass, which was fixed by a firmware update yesterday and now they are satisfied. If you had the Arc, Sonos Sub then things were great.

I have tried the Sennheiser Ambeo, Bose 700 & Sub, Playbar, Beam and now the Arc (with Sonos Sub and two Sonos One Rears) and the Arc is the most complete system out of all of those. It blows always the Beam and Playbar.

Even my wife who could care less about audio says the same, which is quite a compliment. I am satisfied - finally!
Lots of people having issues with mids and highs. Sound like it has to do with the Trueplay on newer iOS devices.
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post #19 of 24 Old 06-26-2020, 04:08 AM
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There are still a LOT of people complaining about the Arc's sound quality even after the firmware update. Either there are a lot of defective units out there or Sonos still has some work to do to make the Arc sound better. The Arc is their flagship product and yet several people have said that their Playbar or even their Beam sounds better at this point. Something isn't right.

Here are some threads on the Sonos forums. There are plenty on the Sonos subreddit as well. I've been reading these threads with interest as I am contemplating an Arc purchase myself if Sonos get this sorted out.

https://en.community.sonos.com/troub...178180-6843904

https://en.community.sonos.com/home-...10/index5.html

https://en.community.sonos.com/home-...9/index34.html
Interesting. Definitely not my case though and as I said before, I tested all the high end sound bars and trust my ears and knowledge of sound bars. Many of those people don’t have the sub too. I doubt if any or very few people tested all the sound bars that I have, which I said in a pervious post. I can probably post just as many links of people that like it.

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post #20 of 24 Old 06-26-2020, 04:12 AM
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Originally Posted by danasingleton91 View Post
I’ve seen comment after comment that it’s been a huge upgrade over the Playbar. For $160 more I’m wondering if I should make the switch. BUT...I feel like it’s not going to make sense in my situation.

Ceilings = 30ft tall
Side firing = I have a wall on each side of the soundbar that will be about 1’ from the ends. Seems like it will reflect like crazy and ruin any surround audio.
TV= 70” 2018 LG 4K w/HDR but from what I can tell does not have eARC.

Thoughts...?
I also have tall ceilings, but the sound is much better overall than a Playbar and for future proofing you are much better off with an Arc. $160 is not too much, when you consider that it will be supported much longer and they will keep improving it through firmware upgrades.

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post #21 of 24 Old 06-26-2020, 02:21 PM - Thread Starter
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[/quote]I also have tall ceilings, but the sound is much better overall than a Playbar and for future proofing you are much better off with an Arc. $160 is not too much, when you consider that it will be supported much longer and they will keep improving it through firmware upgrades.[/QUOTE]

I feel like the side firing speakers reflecting off the walls would be more of an issue than the upfiring speakers, but it’s really hard to tell until it is at home.

I would probably have to wait quite a while to get a Sub with the Arc. I’m not happy with the Playbar sound without a Sub.

As far as sound quality goes, what is better:
a) Sonos Arc
or
b) Playbar + Sub
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post #22 of 24 Old 06-26-2020, 03:31 PM
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I got the Arc and Sub today. I knew it would be a downgrade (from DT center + floor standing with built in subs). It is a downgrade but the jury’s still out. My wife loves getting rid of all the other stuff (including receiver and Harmony remote). The sound is good, not great. Bass and highs are very good but the mids are surprisingly lacking.

To answer the question above, I would think playbar + sub would be better than the arc without one.
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post #23 of 24 Old 06-26-2020, 04:00 PM
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Originally Posted by Atlanta_EQ View Post
but the mids are surprisingly lacking.

There are threads on the Sonos forum and Reddit about the the lacking mids and also in some cases, highs. There were also issues with the lower end, but a recent update supposedly fixed that.
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post #24 of 24 Old 06-26-2020, 04:04 PM
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There are threads on the Sonos forum and Reddit about the the lacking mids and also in some cases, highs. There were also issues with the lower end, but a recent update supposedly fixed that.
Yeah, I read this thread and the Sonos forum posts. It’s not bad. It’s just not good. My experiences with Sonos have been good for a long time (except the bricking debacle) so I’ll give them the benefit of the doubt that they get this worked out.
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