Best Sonos Alternatives 2022
Best Sonos Alternatives 2022
So you've decided it's time to bring your home music system into the modern era and embrace the digital world of audio streaming, podcasts and playlists. We take a look at several options for the best Sonos alternative, with systems to suit a variety of budgets, and for single room to multi-zone home installation.
Why an alternative to Sonos?
As the market leader, it’s the most obvious choice for shoppers looking at a modern home audio system. Sonos got in early with their smart home audio, delivering the tech with the focus on aesthetic style and the desirable wireless connection of devices.
Great marketing and a catchy brand will always push products to the forefront, making them a desirable name, and leading to those impulse purchases we all make. But, it also leads to a lack of awareness of the lesser-known but quite often better-suited options available.
There are many factors that make a smart home sound system suitable for your specific needs, and this can range from how your home is physically constructed, to the number of required users at any time, and how upfront or discreet you want the system to be, both visually and sonically.
Best Sonos alternatives for single and multiple rooms
The products from Tibo are some of our favourites and for good reason. They offer superb quality and features that put most smart audio systems to shame, and at half the cost of the better known brands.
Easy integration into existing hi-fi setups or as stand-alone audio systems, Tibo makes streaming and multi-room audio as simple as can be. The dedicated Tibo App will recognise any Tibo speaker or streamer connected to your network, allowing you to easily create a zone controlled sound system.
Tibo SIA75 Smart Integrated Amplifier
Tibos range topper is just a beautiful bit of kit. A slim sized amplifier that been designed for the music lover that wants to easily incorporate their existing hi-fi equipment into a modern streaming capable system.
Offering both ethernet and WiFi network connection, along with Bluetooth for local device streaming, the SIA75 brings you all the latest digital music options, from your Spotify playlists to your favourite podcast, easily accessed through the Tibo App from any smartphone or tablet.
Built to be the heart of your music system, the SIA75 features line inputs for connecting CD players, cassette decks, a dedicated phono input for turntables, and an optical input for the audio from your TV.
Internet radio preset buttons to the front panel allow for instant playback without needing the App.
Its Class D amplifier produces 2x 75W which can power anything from ceiling speakers to hi-fi tower speakers, and the unit also includes a balanced output for connecting up an active subwoofer.
Tibo SIA50 Smart Integrated Amplifier
Somehow the SIA50 manages to squeeze in nearly all of the features of its bigger brother into a box thats half the size.
You lose a couple of bits yes, the wired ethernet option, the phono input, and it’s down to one line input, but incredibly the rest is there, making it an ideal low-cost Sonos connect alternative that doesn’t require an additional amp to work.
2x 50W stereo output with a balanced line out for an active subwoofer. Optical input for TV or SKY box audio, and Bluetooth for local device audio streaming makes the SIA50 an amazing little audio system.
Connecting to your network over WiFi via the Tibo App gives you access to all your streaming services and internet radio stations, along with playback from DLNA music servers or hard drives for your stored digital music library.
Tibo Bond 4 Smart Amp
The Bond 4 strips things back even further than the SIA50, which makes it ideal for anyone that’s looking for a simple amplified streaming box to use with a set of speakers as a modern digital music system.
It features wired ethernet and WiFi network connections for all your digital streaming, and Bluetooth connectivity for playing audio directly from your smart devices. An audio input allows for hook up of any analog audio source if required, and line output means the Bond 4 can function purely as a streamer when connected to any external amplifier.
Its 2x 25W RMS output is perfect for use with a set of bookshelf speakers, and as with all Tibo devices, the Bond 4 can be network linked through the Tibo App for multi-room audio control.
Tibo Bond Mini WiFi Music Streamer
As a low cost alternative to the Sonos connect, the Bond Mini from Tibo is a high quality, no frills streaming device.
As simple as can be, the Bond Mini has a single audio line output for connection to a separate amplifier and speakers, or powered monitor speakers, giving you instant access to streaming services, internet radio stations, and and digital music stored on networked hard drives computers.
With WiFi connection to your home network, the easy to use Tibo App provides you with full control over your listening choices, as well as control and playback over any other connected Tibo device.
Cheap Sonos Alternatives for Home Audio Installation
For our low cost smart audio options, we come away from the streaming box options of Nuvo and Tibo, instead looking at several of our immensely popular active ceiling speaker systems.
If youre looking for a completely cable free and clutter free smart audio alternative to Sonos, these ceiling installed sound systems come in several sizes and power levels to suit most requirements, along with single room and multi-zone options.
The discreet nature of ceiling speakers makes these systems not only our most affordable smart audio, but also the perfect choice for modern homes and minimalist decor, where they blend in seamlessly.
WCS65 WiFi Bluetooth Ceiling Speakers 6.5″ 120w Pair
The WCS range of smart home speakers really do offer everything you could want from a modern home music system.
Blending into any ceiling with their magnetic flush fit covers, the 6.5 inch kevlar coned woofers and adjustable coaxial tweeters produce a detailed and powerful sound that makes any audio come alive.
Working as a pair with one active (powered) speaker and one passive speaker, the WCS65 requires a simple mains connection from the lighting circuit and away you go.
Offering both Bluetooth for a local device stream, and WiFi for a networked connection, its easy to listen to your favourite podcast, radio station, or Spotify playlist, all controlled through the 4STREAM App. This also allows for simple multi-room setup of additional WCS65 pairs, meaning you can create a whole home sound system with ease.
WCS50 WiFi Bluetooth Ceiling Speakers 5.25″ 100w Pair
Offering the same functionality and sound quality as their slightly larger brother, the WCS50 speaker set simply brings the main woofer size down an inch to 5.25, making it a better choice for smaller rooms and systems used for more casual, lower volume listening.
Not that they arent powerful when needed of course, as the built in amplifier and kevlar cones create a great depth of sound, enhanced with their independent and angle adjustable tweeters for excellent top end clarity.
The WCS50 feature easy fit ceiling clamps and magnetic flush to ceiling grills, and the low voltage power supply can be easily connected into an available lighting circuit.
With Bluetooth available and the App controlled WiFi connection to streaming services, the WCS50 are a superb choice for any home, with multi-room capability making them incredible value.
4 Zone WiFi Smart Ceiling Speaker System
A superb multi-room audio system which includes 4 pairs of Fonestar KS-07 high performance ceiling speaker sets.
Each pair of speakers includes an active (powered) unit and passive speaker, with the active units digital amplifier providing 2 x 20W, which is selectable for both stereo and mono outputs depending on the room size and listening position.
Requiring just a mains connection from any lighting circuit, the active units feature a WiFi connection to your home network, and connect to one another through the Muzo App. This also allows for each pair of speakers to operate independently or together, so you can have the same music playing throughout, or different music on each pair at the same time. Radio in the kitchen and Spotify in the lounge? No problem.
Easy fitment, great sound, and simple to use. Fill your home with music with none of the traditional audio boxes and cables taking up your much needed space.
Sonos Alternatives for Larger Homes
No list of Sonos amp alternatives would be right without an honourable mention to Systemline 7 as the grandfather of all modern installed audio systems. Sadly no longer produced as of 2020, these were a pioneer in digital audio distribution and a favourite of ours for their reliable connections over distances and no-nonsense design. Its spiritual successor, the Nuvo Player, is where we shall begin:
At the more premium end of the home audio installation market, the Nuvo Player range has been designed to provide a comprehensive yet advanced audio experience, with simple App control allowing multiple users operation of individual zones, with full access to all the major streaming services and stored music collections.
Nuvo Audio P5050 Professional Series 3 Zone Player
Nuvo Players such as the P5050 professional series use a wired network connection for communication in its ‘Player Ecosystem’, ensuring the very best audio quality that's free of the dropouts and connectivity issues that often come with a WiFi-only based system. With its built-in 50W per channel power amplifier and 3 independent zone output, this system can offer an ideal, all-in-one alternative to a multiple Sonos amp and Sonos connect setup.
The P5050 features built-in streaming codecs for all the popular services such as Spotify, Amazon Music, Deezer, SiriusXM, TuneIn, Pandora, Napster and iHeart Radio, along with USB and network playback of all the main stored music file types. Amazon Alexa integration allows for voice command operation.
The control App works on both Android and iOS devices for total convenience, and the P5050 can also be operated from wall mounted Nuvo P20 control plates or the Nuvo P30 touchscreen interface. It gives a stylish and logical layout for easy control of all your music, and of the system’s settings and preferences.
Nuvo P5100 Professional Series 3 Zone Player
Should your home installation require more output power than the P5050 provides, its larger brother the Nuvo P5100 provides identical features but includes 100W per channel output to its 3-zones, allowing a wider selection of loudspeakers to be operated without compromise. Its a powerful Sonos amp alternative that offers many more features in one box.
Nuvo P5200 Professional Series 3 Zone Player
The range-topping Nuvo P5200 again provides the same features and ease of use as its siblings, this time with 200W per channel available, allowing the use of multiple speakers if required, or providing ample power for a set of performance hi-fi speakers.
Though aimed primarily at audio installers, the P5200 could be just what you're looking for in a powerful all-in-one Sonos system alternative.
Nuvo alternatives for Sonos Port and Sonos Amp Systems
The mid-level Nuvo streamers are superbly capable devices, bringing the functionality and audio quality of the larger installation series and making it suitable for a wide range of home situations.
Though fully capable of being used as stand-alone audio streamers, the smaller P series units all operate using the same Nuvo App as the larger system, thus allowing full integration if needed. Perfect for adding in additional zones at any time without the worry of compatibility issues.
This also means that a multi-room audio system can be created using and of the smaller P range (100, 200, 300) in each desired room or zone, with networked control over all the connected devices.
Nuvo P100 Player
Starting with the fantastic P100 Player, which offers both wired network connection and dual frequency 802.11n WiFi to maximise the locations it can be used.
This discreet sized player includes an analog input for connecting in any external device, from a CD player or turntable, to a TV audio out. (TV may require an adapter depending on its specific outputs)
Unlike Sonos, this device is both streamer and amplifier in one, with 2x 20W RMS that’s ideal for good quality ceiling speakers or bookshelf speakers.
Its handy line output allows the P100 to operate as a networked preamplifier, should you wish to connect it into a more powerful hi-fi amplifier or home cinema amplifier to enjoy your playlists and digital library through an existing sound system.
Nuvo P200 Player
The swiss-army knife of the smaller Nuvo players range. The P200 enjoys all the features of its smaller brother the P100, but ups the available amplification to a powerful 2x 60W, which delivers great performance to both installation style ceiling speakers and wall speakers, or to more traditional hi-fi speaker systems.
A welcome inclusion is Bluetooth connectivity using the lossless aptX system, allowing for easy streaming of audio from any Bluetooth capable device such as smartphones or tablets.
The P200 also includes built-in dynamic volume adjustment from Audyssey, which keeps volume levels balanced across the various inputs to avoid any unpleasant jumps when switching say from a Bluetooth source to a network stream.
Nuvo P300 Preamplifier
Offering the convenience of both wired network and wireless WiFi integration, the P300 is designed to work with your existing hi-fi amplifier or home cinema receiver to provide easy access to online audio streaming and both local (USB) or networked music library storage.
This superb preamplifier can be used independently, or be incorporated into a larger Nuvo player home system to allow your home cinema room or traditional hi-fi setup to be included as a selectable audio zone, along with providing you a high performance digital audio source to older analogue setups. Unlike the P100 and P200 models, there is no built-in amplifier to the P300, so it must be connected to external amplification to function as an audio system.
Using the Nuvo App, your playlists, internet radio stations and streaming services are all available from your phone or tablet.