Top 12 tips & tricks to Get the most out of your Sonos soundbar

Sonos undoubtedly has one of the most complete soundbar lineups on the market right now. Whether you’ve opted for their compact Sonos Ray, Sonos Beam (Gen 2) or premium Sonos Arc soundbar, you’re guaranteed an upgrade for your TV, music & gaming experiences. Boasting immersive audio performances, multi-room capability, general ease of use and even Dolby Atmos support in the Beam and Arc’s case, all 3 Sonos soundbars are a fantastic addition to your home.

But, there’s always room for improvement! We have 12 Sonos soundbar tips and tricks to help you make sure you’re getting the most out of your Sonos soundbar. Maximising your performance levels and ensuring you won’t be left wanting more from your home cinema setup. 

Don’t worry Sonos Ray users, although it may not have Dolby Atmos support or HDMI connectivity. We still have plenty of neat tricks that you can use to level up your listening experience. 

1. Trueplay Tuning Calibration

Without a shadow of a doubt Sonos’ room calibration software, Trueplay Tuning, is the quickest and most affordable way to give your Sonos soundbar an instant boost. Admittedly, this isn’t necessarily a hidden feature but many users opt to skip going through the entire process in a bid to save some time during setup. Trueplay tuning makes use of your phone's microphones to tailor your Sonos soundbar’s audio output for your room's exact composition. 

Yes, you may look a little silly waving your phone around the room. But trust us, for what you get in return in terms of sound performance, it's worth it. We also recommend re-running Trueplay every 6 months or so as changes to your room such as furniture being moved around can impact performance!

Disclaimer: this feature is only available on IOS devices. (Top tip for Android users - if you have any friends with an IOS device, invite them over and borrow theirs!)

Tips for getting the most out of tuning

Minimise background noise such as talking.
Cover as much of your space as possible.
Don’t adjust the volume. The test tones can be pretty loud but refrain from turning it down for an accurate result.

 

2. Enhance vocals using Speech Enhancement

Boost vocals by turning on Speech Enhancement in the Sonos app, making dialogue easier to hear and follow. We love this feature for ensuring you catch every word when you’re watching at quieter volumes later at night!

How to turn on using IOS or Android:

  1. Turn on TV & ensure TV audio is playing through your Sonos soundbar
  2. Open the Sonos app and tap the Now Playing bar at the bottom to navigate to the Now Playing screen
  3. Tap the speech bubble icon on the right to toggle Speech Enhancement on or off

3. Optimise performance for evening viewing with Night Mode

Watching late at night and worried about disturbing others in your home? Use the Night Mode feature to reduce the intensity of loud sounds from your Sonos soundbar and increase the volume of quieter sounds to keep the dialogue clear without having to turn up the volume. 

How to turn on Night Sound on IOS or Android:

  1. Turn on TV & ensure TV audio is playing through your Sonos soundbar
  2. Open the Sonos app and tap the Now Playing bar at the bottom to navigate to the Now Playing screen
  3. Tap the moon icon on the left to toggle Night Mode on or off

 

4. Adjust the height channels (Sonos Beam (Gen 2) & Sonos Arc only)

If you have a Sonos Beam (Gen 2) or Sonos Arc then you can adjust the height channels in the Sonos app. Both are Dolby Atmos enabled soundbars but recreate 3D audio in slightly different ways. The Sonos Arc delivers height channels using dedicated up-firing drivers while the Sonos Beam (Gen 2) simulates height channels using psychoacoustics.

Using the Height Channels setting in the Sonos app, you can adjust the volume of the height channels to emphasise or reduce the overhead audio.

How to adjust the height channels:

  1. Open the Sonos S2 app for IOS or Android
  2. Go to Settings then tap System
  3. Select the correct room and under Sound, select Height Audio
  4. Use the slider to adjust the volume of the height audio channels to suit your listening preferences. 

 

5. Dolby Atmos content (Sonos Beam (Gen 2) & Sonos Arc only)

The Sonos Beam (Gen 2) and Sonos Arc sound great with all content but they really come alive when you’re watching Dolby Atmos content. So, you’ll want to check that you’re accessing Atmos if your setup is compatible.

Dolby Atmos is a format which enables sound to be heard three-dimensionally.

Use the following steps to get Dolby Atmos on your Sonos Arc or Sonos Beam

  1. Check if your TV is Atmos compatible (you can normally see in the spec list for your TV). Any other device that “touches” the audio must also be able to pass Atmos content along (e.g. Apple TV, Blu-Ray player etc.)
  2. Check your connections. The Sonos Arc and Sonos Beam need to be connected via an HDMI cord (provided in the box) via an ARC or eARC port in your TV.
  3. Check your streaming app. If you are viewing content via a streaming service such as Netflix or Disney+, it must also be capable of playing Atmos content via your particular TV.
  4. Check your content. Any content you watch must have Atmos audio in a supported codec (Dolby Digital Plus, Dolby True HD, Dolby MAT).
?Top tip - If you have followed all the above steps, you can check if you’re getting Dolby Atmos audio by checking for the Dolby Atmos logo on the now playing screen.

 

6. Adjust EQ

Did you know you can adjust the bass, treble and loudness of your Sonos soundbar? Use the adjustable EQ settings to tailor the performance of your Sonos Ray, Sonos Beam or Sonos Arc to suit your listening preferences. 

Bass Adjusts the lower frequency sounds, such as bass or a kick drum
Treble Adjusts the higher frequency sounds, such as vocals or guitar
Loudness Boosts certain frequencies, including bass, during low listening volumes. This is designed to compensate for normal changes in the ear’s sensitivity when listening to audio at low volumes.

How to adjust EQ settings on iOS or Android

  1. Open the SOnos app
  2. Navigate to the Settings tab and select System
  3. Select the room you would like to adjust
  4. Tap EQ and use the sliders to make adjustments
?Top tip - In the Sonos S2 app, you can adjust the EQ settings from the Now Playing screen by tapping the volume slider and then tapping the EQ icon.

On a Mac or PC

  1. Open the Sonos app & go to the Settings/Preferences menu
  2. (Mac only) select the Sonos drop-down menu at the top left of the screen and select Preferences
  3. (PC only) select the Manage drop-down menu at the top of the window and select Settings
  4. Tap EQ Settings, then select a room from the drop-down menu to adjust the EQ of your Sonos soundbar

 

7. Set a volume limit

Want to set a maximum volume for your Sonos soundbar? Use the volume limit to apply a limit on a scale from 0-100.

The Now Playing screen will still show a full volume slider but will adjust to the limit you have set. Setting a 50% volume limit will mean that sliding the volume bar all the way to the right will output volume of 50% rather than 100%.

Volume limits will also apply to alarms and line-in autoplay as well.

How to set a volume limit on iOS or Android

  1. Open the Sonos app
  2. Navigate to the Settings tab and tap System
  3. Select the room you would like to modify
  4. Under Sound, tap Volume Limit
  5. Use the slider to set the max volume

 

8. Turn off the Status light and touch controls

If you find the status light distracting while watching in low light or worried about young children pausing your music mid flow with the touch controls? Good news is, you can disable both the status light and touch controls on your Sonos soundbar.

Note: the status light indicates connection to WiFi as well as signal errors and muted volume.

To disable:

  1. Open the Sonos app on iOS or Android
  2. Navigate to the Settings tab, tap System and select the product you would like to modify.
  3. Under Hardware, you can toggle Status Light and Touch Controls on/off

 

9. Optimise your setup with an accessory

Sonos soundbars can be further enhanced with their placement. If you have a TV stand, you might opt to place your soundbar on top, underneath your TV. Alternatively, you could add a compatible accessory to fit your setup. 

We have a range of Sonos soundbar accessories from Sonos, Mountson, Flexson & Nova. The range includes TV Mount attachments, Wall Mounts and Cantilever Mounts. Read our best practices for wall mounting the Sonos Ray, Sonos Beam and Sonos Arc below.

Sonos Ray/ Sonos Beam (Gen 2)

  • Keep 1” (25mm) space (minimum) above the Beam to allow access to touch controls
  • For best sound performance, allow at least 1’ (30cm) from either end of the Beam and a wall or other obstruction.

Sonos Arc

  • Keep 4” (102mm) space (minimum) between Arc and your TV
  • For best sound performance, allow at least 1’ (30cm) from either end of the Beam and a wall or other obstruction.

SHOP SONOS SOUNDBAR ACCESSORIES

 

10. Expand your home theater setups

Sonos soundbars sound great on their own and even better as part of a bundle. Add a separate subwoofer and/or rear surround sound speakers to add punchy bass and immersive surround audio to your soundbar setup.

Adding a Sonos Subwoofer

Adding a Sonos subwoofer is a great way of levelling up your audio performance for TV, Music & Gaming by adding extra bass to your setup. Sonos have two subwoofer options, the Sonos Sub (Gen 3) and the Sonos Sub Mini. Both can be added to a Sonos Ray, Sonos Beam (Gen 2) or Sonos Arc and offer simple, wireless connection.

Adding a Sonos subwoofer will also enhance the performance of your paired soundbar. By taking the load of the lower frequencies, connecting a Sonos sub frees up processing power for the connection Sonos soundbar to deliver enhanced performance on the other arrays.

Sonos Sub (Gen 3) Sonos Sub Mini
  • Best suited to medium/large spaces
  • Powerful bass
  • High volume levels
  • Vertical or horizontal orientation
  • Can be used in a dual Sonos Sub (Gen 3) setup
  • Best suited for small/medium spaces
  • Compact yet punchy bass
  • Low to moderate volume levels
  • Vertical orientation only
  • One Sonos Sub Mini per pairing

SHOP SONOS SUB (GEN 3)

 SHOP SONOS SUB MINI

Read our full comparison of the Sonos Sub (Gen 3) vs Sonos Sub Mini here.

Adding Sonos Rears

Looking to add heightened immersion to your setup? Adding a pair of Sonos speakers as rear surround sounds will enhance performance and place you in the centre of the action. 

We generally recommend a pair of Sonos One (Gen 2) speakers to connect to a Sonos Ray if you are looking to add voice control capability to your setup. If you already have voice capability from your Sonos Beam (Gen 2) or Sonos Arc, we suggest adding a pair of Sonos One SL rear surrounds which, at a lower price point, are the perfect pairing. 

For those with a larger, more open plan space or those looking for a powerful rear addition, you can opt for a pair of Sonos Five speakers for your rear surround audio.

Helpful content

Which Sonos speakers are best for surround sound?

Our top 3 tips for adding Sonos Surround Sound speakers.

 

11. Create saved playlists in My Sonos

Everything is set up, now let’s get personal. While Sonos soundbars are often primarily used for TV audio, they also offer a fantastic performance for music. Add a playlist to My Sonos for quick access to your favourite songs at the tap of a button

To add a playlist to My Sonos, tap on your favourite playlist from your chosen streaming service, click the 3 dots on the top right and select Add Playlist to My Sonos - all done!

 

12. Set up voice assistant

The final step is to go hands-free! Add your chosen voice assistant to control your setup with just your voice.

Sonos Ray

Add a compatible device such as a Sonos One, Amazon Echo Dot or Google Nest Mini to add voice control via Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant or Sonos Voice Control to your Sonos Ray Soundbar.

Sonos Beam (Gen 2)/Sonos Arc

To use voice commands to control your Sonos system, you can select from one of the below in the Sonos app.

Sonos Voice Control - see how to setup here.

Amazon Alexa - see how to setup here.

Google Assistant - see how to setup here.

Siri - see how to setup here.