Sonos Sub Mini Review

Sonos Sub Mini Review
Sonos Roam Review 1
Sonos Sub Mini
Company: Sonos
Type: Subwoofer
MSRP: $429
CGM Editors Choice

After years of rumour and speculation, Sonos has finally released the Sonos Sub Mini. With the brand moving more into solutions for a wider range of people, it makes sense to bring out a sub that pairs with your equipment, and won’t cost an arm and a leg to add to your home. The Sonos Sub has remained relatively the same look for its almost decade long run, so it is exciting to see things being mixed up, and for most people this new offering will bring more than enough impact to their audio to make it well worth the investment. 

Let’s get this out of the way before we go any further: while the Sonos Sub Mini is indeed smaller than the Sub, it is still a large device for a living room. The standard Sonos Sub is a massive 15.3 in (389 mm) x 15.8 in (402 mm) x 6.2 in (158 mm) and weighs a shockingly heavy 36.3 lb (16 kg). The Sub Mini on the other hand is 12 in (305 mm) x 9.1 in (230 mm) x 9.1 in (230 mm) and clocks in at almost half the weight with 14 lb (6.35 kg). Both will take up a fair chunk of living room space next to your TV, but the Sub Mini makes it much more manageable. 

Sonos Sub Mini Review 1

Beyond the size and weight, the new look of the Sonos Sub Mini is a sign the brand is evolving with each new iteration of a product. While the piano black finish of the Sonos Sub gave it a premium, ‘expensive’ look when it first launched, times have changed, and the new matte finish and clean cylindrical look of the Sonos Sub Mini just looks fantastic next to modern TV’s and devices. The clean lines and flat stop make it stand out just enough, and the black and white colour options work well to instigate it into most living room, or TV room settings. 

This brings us to the price; the Sub Mini comes in at a much more affordable price when compared to the Sonos Sub, costing £429 in the UK, $429 in the US and €499 in Europe when it arrives on 6 October. The original Sub on the other hand is nearly double the price, setting you back £749 in the UK, $749 in the US and €849 in Europe.

The Sonos Sub Mini, much like the Sonos Sub, has minimal inputs and buttons. You will find a single Ethernet port, a power connection, and a join button at the back of the device. The Sub Mini also features NFC on the top though for even easier pairing with your Sonos system.  Beyond that, you have a simple, clean piece of audio that sits at the ready for when you are playing music, and then things start to get interesting.

Sonos Sub Mini Review 2
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In the Sonos Sub Mini you will find class-D amplifiers and dual 6-inch woofers that face inwards for a force-canceling effect that minimizes buzz, rattle and other sounds that would take away from an immersive audio experience. The design of the Sonos Sub Mini is made to neutralize distortion and enhance bass response, and it offers a frequency response down to 25Hz. The Sonos Sub Mini also features a 5GHz low latency connection to a Sonos soundbar to enhance audio transmission speeds, and to sync the audio between your speakers and the TV. 

The Sonos Sub Mini, like all other modern Sonos devices, can take advantage of Trueplay if you have an iOS-based device. This lets you use an Apple phone or tablet to tune the audio of your room to sound as good as possible with your speakers. It uses the speaker and microphones on your mobile device to properly tune the acoustics of the room, and in my experience it can make notable changes to how audio sounds. Sadly, if you do not have an iOS device, you can’t take advantage of the feature, but if you do, it is something well worth the five minutes it can take.

The real question is can a sub this size actually bring noticeable bass to your room, and the answer is a resounding yes, as long as your room is not massive. The Sonos Sub is still the king if you want to fill a massive TV room with audio, and with its ability to pair a second Sub, there is little its smaller, lighter brother could compete on pure impact. Thankfully, the audio the Sonos Sub Mini does produce is clear, impactful and vibrant, even with its smaller size. I found that it filled my 400 sq. ft. TV room with enough bass to rattle glasses, all without ever sounding distorted or muffled. 

Sonos Sub Mini Review 3

Jumping into gaming, the extra bass the Sub Mini provides compared to just a Sonos soundbar was notable. It manages to make the rev of an engine or the slash of a sword have more weight behind them. In action movies, it gave the right level of immersion to suck you into the experience, giving a noticeable oomph to the viewing experience, that no matter how good your soundbar may be, can’t compare to a dedicated amplifier and woofer for the lower frequencies. 

“Sonos Sub Mini is a welcome addition to an already impressive lineup of speakers.”

As with the Sonos Sub, the Sub Mini can have the bass adjusted using the Sonos app. The default should be fine for most use cases, but there are always times you want to turn the bass down for when people may be sleeping, or just want a particular experience to hit a bit harder. At the highest settings, the Sonos Sub Mini delivered a very strong bass that, if you are in an apartment, could be a problem for your direct neighbours, but even at these levels it managed to stay relatively clear, with no noticeable distortion, noise or other interference that could take away from the otherwise fantastic audio.

The Sonos Sub Mini is a great addition to the range of speakers, and makes for a solid companion for someone who may already have a Sonos Ray or Sonos Beam. It pairs well, and gives a noticeable improvement to the audio experience. It is built to fill a small or medium size room and it does so well, giving enough audio to bring your movie or game to life that you simply can’t get otherwise. 

Sonos Sub Mini Review 4

The only issue I have is that while the Sub Mini is a much smaller and lighter option than the full-size monster Sonos Sub, it is still not by any definition small. The simple realities of bass audio are that you need the speaker to have some heft to be able to deliver audio without distortion while still delivering sound that can elevate the experience, but I feel more could have been done to help it fit smaller setups. Even though it is lighter next to the Sonos Sub, the Sub Mini is only slightly smaller, and still needs a relatively large area to work properly. 

Then comes the price: the Sonos Sub Mini is still not cheap by any measurement. The Sonos Sub at nearly a grand Canadian is insurmountable for many who just want to dabble in audio. But so is $699 ($429 USD), especially when it is made to fit smaller homes or spaces and their more affordable speakers. I feel the Sonos Sub Mini is a noticeable improvement to audio, especially when you are diving into gaming on an Xbox Series X or PlayStation 5, but for many what a soundbar delivers is ‘good enough’ and an over-$500 sub does little to win new or thrifty buyers over. 

Gripes aside, the Sonos Sub Mini is a welcome addition to an already impressive lineup of speakers. The Sub Mini fills a small to medium-sized room with bass that sounds fantastic, and the simplicity of the setup makes it an ideal choice for someone looking to upgrade their Sonos Beam or Sonos Ray setup. For anyone looking to elevate their Sonos Arc experience, I would still recommend the full-sized Sonos Sub, but for everyone else, the Sub Mini is an attractive and slightly more affordable option.

Final Thoughts

REVIEW SCORE

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