Era 300: Sonos, the Beatles and a special listening experience

Era 300: Sonos, the Beatles and a special listening experience
The Era 300 from the US manufacturer Sonos is now available for 499 euros.
Image: Sonos

I look back fondly on the music lessons I had in high school. Especially an hour where our professor explained what stereo sound is. To illustrate, we listened to recordings of The Beatles in the classroom. On the amplifier, our teacher first turned the balance to one side and later to the other side. Lo and behold, on “Come Together” the left side is reserved for George Harrison’s and John Lennon’s guitars and Paul McCartney’s electric piano. Ringo Starr on the drums can let off steam all alone on the right.

Memories of the music lesson described were awakened when the new Era 300 arrived for testing. Manufacturer Sonos promises “groundbreaking 3D sound”. How would that sound sound – and what would become of the stereo sound of my beloved Beatles? My experience report with the new Sonos Era 300:

New is actually completely new for the Era 300. So far there’s been the Sonos One (whose evolution is now called the Era 100) and the larger Sonos Five. In terms of size and sound volume, the Era 300 falls right in between. A very sensible addition to the existing portfolio.

Internally are six drivers that direct sound left and right, forward and up. This is to ensure that even a single speaker delivers stereo sound. The speaker also masters surround sound, in Dolby Atmos format. To create an ideal home cinema experience, the manufacturer recommends combining two Era 300 rear speakers with a soundbar. It’s a shame that Dolby Atmos support when listening to music is limited to Apple Music and Amazon Music.

Also externally the Era 300 is able to attract attention. The design of the four and a half kilo loudspeaker is modern and bold, and there is also a new practical touch bar with which the volume can be adjusted.

Connectivity: Like other Sonos speakers, the Era 300 connects via WiFi (with WiFi 6 support). The music is selected and playback controlled via the Sonos app. Streaming services such as Spotify, Apple Music or Amazon Music can be connected in the app. A USB-C line-in and Bluetooth support are included. The Era 300 is also equipped with microphones, which on the one hand enables voice commands and on the other hand allows the so-called Trueplay tuning. Here the device determines the room acoustics and then adjusts the sound to the room.

How does the Era 300 sound? The sound is very balanced with clear highs and mids and a powerful bass. And you don’t necessarily need two speakers (anymore) to hear that the Beatles put special effort into the stereo mix of their albums. Sonos’ announcement of a “broad stereo soundstage” is by no means exaggerated here. And the Era 300 manages to do that as a single speaker – a project that many other compact speakers fail at.

  • Continue reading: Test for Sonos One and Sonos Five as well as experience in setting up the Sonos system

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