Sonos ERA 100 Speaker Review

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Sonos logo
Sonos ERA 100
Editors Choice

Sonos has once again blended technology and audio with its latest speaker, the ERA 100. Aimed at music lovers, the new Sonos ERA 100 is a significant step up from previous iterations of their base-level smart speaker and a sign of a new vision for the audio maker, bringing new features never before seen on their Wi-Fi-connected home speakers. It’s a symphony of sound and technology that will excite you about everything Sonos brings to the table.

Sonos has always been known for its sleek and minimalist design, and the ERA 100 is no exception. The speaker blends seamlessly into any modern interior and is encased in a sturdy matte black or white finish. Clad in a subdued matte black or white finish, this compact speaker—measuring a discreet 4.9 x 4.9 x 5.5 inches and weighing a modest 6.6 pounds—seamlessly integrates into the tableau of any modern home.

The ERA 100 is also built to withstand the test of time and everyday use in the house. Its moisture-resistant design makes it suitable for use in humid environments, such as bathrooms or kitchens, without compromising its performance or longevity. This resilience, coupled with its timeless aesthetic, ensures that the Sonos ERA 100 won’t feel dated in your home, letting it grow with your living situation, at least if you decide you want to keep investing in Sonos products.

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The ERA 100’s remarkable sound quality comes from a combination of powerful hardware and innovative software, continuing the trend Sonos has built up over the years. With multiple drivers and subwoofer working in unison, the speaker produces deep bass and crystal-clear highs that will make your favourite songs feel brand rich and full of life. Coupled with the advanced Trueplay software, the Sonos ERA 100 adapts the sound output to match the acoustics of your room, ensuring an immersive listening experience like never before. I expected the Sonos ERA 100 to be more of a minor refresh of the Sonos One, but thankfully I was proven wrong.

“Coupled with the advanced Trueplay software, the Sonos ERA 100 adapts the sound output to match the acoustics of your room…”

The sonic performance of the ERA 100 surpasses its predecessors, the Sonos One, in remarkable ways. The bass has evolved, becoming punchier and more defined rather than constrained as in previous models, thanks to a 25% larger woofer. The new stereo sound from the ERA 100 far surpasses the depth and clarity of the Sonos One, bringing music to life, and considering you can pair two Sonos ERA 100s together, things can get even more exciting, much to the delight of your ears.

Position the speaker near a wall or corner, initiate the room-tuning process, and witness the magic. The ERA 100 listens to its own playback and utilizes advanced processing algorithms to adjust its output and refine the audio. The typical boomy or bass-heavy sound plagues speakers in confined spaces is no longer an issue with the ERA 100, thanks to Sonos’s on-device software. The results can be astoundingly impressive, and while TruePlay has been an offering for a while now, finally, Android users can reap the benefits even if not directly on the phone.

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The Sonos ERA 100, even with its small size, manages to be a musical powerhouse that fills your room with immersive sound, taking the listening experience to a whole new level. Its angled tweeters generate an authentic stereo-feeling sound, making the music feel richer and more expansive than ever before. With a sound that feels true to intent for a range of music genres, including hip-hop, pop, and electronic music, the ERA 100 delivers where it counts.

But the Sonos ERA 100 isn’t just about music. It goes beyond being a basic smart speaker and becomes part of your smart home. With built-in support for multiple voice assistants, including Alexa and the Sonos voice assistant, the ERA 100 is easy to integrate into your preexisting system with ease. Whether you need to control your lights, check the weather, or start your favourite playlist, this versatile speaker can do it all. It also sounds significantly better than most other smart speakers on the market, putting the inexpensive Google Home to shame.

“I expected the Sonos ERA 100 to be more of a minor refresh of the Sonos One, but thankfully I was proven wrong.”

The ERA 100’s compatibility with an array of smart home ecosystems makes it an indispensable addition to any connected household. Integration with platforms like Apple HomeKit, Samsung SmartThings, and IFTTT ensures you have complete control over your smart devices. With the ERA 100 at the helm, orchestrating your smart home becomes a breeze.

The Sonos S2 app makes it easy to manage and customize your listening experience, from adjusting EQ settings to grouping the ERA 100 with other Sonos speakers for an immersive multi-room experience. Working with all your existing Sonos hardware, the ERA 100 easily integrates into your home and brings your favourite music and media to life. Unfortunately, if you want to take full advantage of a stereo pair, you’ll need two ERA 100s, and it won’t work with previous speakers in this way, but that doesn’t mean you can’t expand your system by bringing audio anywhere you can find a plug.

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Unlike many previous offerings, including the Sonos One, the ERA 100 also takes the cake when it comes to seamless connectivity. Equipped with both Wi-Fi and Bluetooth capabilities, the speaker offers an uninterrupted listening experience. Say goodbye to tangled wires and cumbersome audio setups; with the ERA 100, your tunes are just a tap away.

With the Sonos S2 app that connects to most streaming services and the ease of Bluetooth connectivity, Sonos has never felt easier. I’m also happy to see that Sonos has more ways to play your personal audio, thanks to USB-C line-in; combined with the right line-in adapter, you can play everything from your classic equipment to more modern devices that need a speaker to bring their audio to life.

Of course, even though I am singing its praises, no device is perfect, and the ERA 100 does have a few minor shortcomings. For an entry-level speaker, the $250 USD price tag is a major hurdle to overcome, even with a vast range of features. Its audio quality, while good, is lacking when compared to other speakers in the Sonos range, leaving it in an odd position against other smart speakers on the market— delivering better audio quality but being a much harder sell due to the price. That being said, Sonos has improved enough to make it a worthy upgrade over the One, and even though costly, the ERA 100 blows $100 speakers out of the water.

“The Sonos ERA 100 is an exceptional smart speaker that delivers a sensational audio experience…”

Much like any Sonos product, the ERA 100 is made better when used in partnership with other Sonos speakers. Sonos is an ecosystem that only gets better the more you add to the mix, with multiroom audio really bringing the quality and concept to life in new ways. But this does have a cost, and for people looking to cheap ways to enjoy their music, this may not be the best option. It will sound good and be packed with features, but if you never want to expand beyond a single speaker, there are other options that may serve you better.

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Despite the price tag, the Sonos ERA 100 stands tall as an unparalleled smart speaker that excels in both audio performance and smart home integration. The elegant design and impeccable sound quality make it a stunning addition to any home, while its vast array of smart features ensures your home is as connected and intelligent as ever.

The ERA 100 feels like an evolution of Sonos, bringing what we all love from the brand while improving in the ways needed to push beyond a core fanbase. From the moment you unbox and hear this smart speaker, the cost makes sense, and the quality behind the brand is hard to ignore. Sonos has shown once again what is possible in a small package, and it is something other brands need to take note of if they ever want to compete.

The Sonos ERA 100 is an exceptional smart speaker that delivers a sensational audio experience and a seamless smart home integration. Its beautiful design, outstanding performance, and advanced features make it a must-have for people looking to go beyond the flat smart speakers we are all used to. Whether you’re a music aficionado or just looking to expand your current setup, the Sonos ERA 100 is sure to exceed your expectations and leave you captivated.

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