Bose 700 vs Sonos Arc (Which Home Speaker is Better)?

Both Bose and Sonos are world-famous brands.

Having built a reputation for quality products using state-of-the-art technology in elegant enclosures, is it any wonder these brands produce some of the best soundbars on the market today?

However, if you are trying to decide which brand of soundbar you want to purchase, simple feature overviews can make them interchangeable. This is not entirely true. 

So what are the main differences between the Bose Soundbar 700 and the Sonos Playbar? The Bose Soundbar 700 delivers cinematic surround sound and includes Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, and Bluetooth technologies.

The Sonos Playbar, on the other hand, offers “speech enhancement” functionality not found in the Bose Soundbar 700 and has a well-balanced sound profile.

However, Bose has an edge over the Playbar because it has newer technology and broader feature integration.

Both soundbars have a lot to offer consumers; each of them exceeds expectations in terms of quality. But which one is really the king when it comes to high-end soundbars? Read on to find out more.

Bose Soundbar 700 vs. Sonos Playbar - Which Is Better?BoseBose Soundbar 700 with Integrated Alexa Voice Control, Black$main eligible
Sonos Wireless Playbar Soundbar Speaker – Black$679.00main eligible

Comparison of characteristics

Bose 700 SoundbarSonos Playbar
Built-in audio channels3.03.0
Loudspeakers4 mid-range cones and 1 tweeter6 mid-range speakers and 3 tweeters
Separate subwooferOptional – Bose 700 Wireless Bass Module (on Amazon)Optional – Wireless Sonos Sub (on Amazon)
Audio inputsHDMI (ARC) and digital optical (TOSLINK)Digital optical (TOSLINK)
Device connectionWi-Fi и BluetoothWi-Fi
Voice controlBuilt-in Alexa and Google AssistantAlexa and Google Assistant optional
Surround sound decoding5.1 channels5.1 channels
Surround speakersOptional – Bose Surround Wireless Speakers (on Amazon)Optional – Wireless Sonos One (on Amazon)
Soundbar dimensions38.5 x 2.25 x 4.25 inches35.5 x 5.6 x 3.4 inches
Soundbar weight10.5 lbs11.9 lbs

 

Bose Soundbar 700 

Bose Soundbar 700 vs. Sonos Playbar - Which Is Better?.

The Bose Soundbar 700 is a pretty good investment. On the surface, however, the list of advantages far outweighs any disadvantages that might diminish the value of this soundbar. 

Advantages:

  • Features include Wi-Fi and Bluetooth.
  • The Bose Music app gives users complete control.
  • The built-in Google Assistant, and Amazon Alexa provide even more control and include the full range of services provided by both. 
  • Well built and built to last.
  • QuietPort and PhaseGuide technologies help minimize distortion and deliver true-to-life sound. 
  • Supports a wide range of audio technologies including Dolby and DTS.
  • Easily upgrades from a 2.0 channel soundbar to a 5.1 surround sound system .

Disadvantages:

  • In some situations, a large soundstage can diffuse sound.
  • Without subwoofer and subwoofer function.
  • Does not include full HDMI input ports.
  • Wall mount sold separately.

Sonos Playbar

The Sonos Playbar is no less an investment. However, it remains one of the industry standards when it comes to soundbars. The advantages and disadvantages of this help explain why at a glance. 

Advantages:

  • Robust construction for durability.
  • The sound profile is well balanced.
  • The Sonos app gives users complete control.
  • Dialogue is precise thanks to the exceptional performance of the center speaker.
  • Auto Tuning and Speech Enhancement help ensure crystal clear sound no matter the size of the room or the action in the background. 
  • Easily upgrades from a 2.0 channel soundbar to a 5.1 surround sound system.

Disadvantages:

  • The package does not include a subwoofer and there is no subwoofer function.
  • Does not include full HDMI input ports, DTS support, or Bluetooth capabilities. 
  • Wall mount sold separately.
  • Some may find this technology obsolete with limited I / O ports

Features: What makes each one different?

Bose Soundbar 700 vs. Sonos Playbar - Which Is Better?

But what features really set each of these soundbars apart? Patented technology, state-of-the-art design, and cinematic sound understanding by each of these famous brands may be the answer. 

Bose Soundbar 700 Features:

Bose has applied its patented PhaseGuide technology to the Soundbar 700. By combining this with the QuietPort design, distortion is significantly reduced. It also broadens the sound field for crystal clear dialogue on screen.

While the Bose Soundbar 700 does not support surround sound, the audience will never know the difference. With built-in technology, it seems like sounds will appear from everywhere, creating a cinematic sound you can be proud of.

Keep in mind that you can add surround speakers and a subwoofer to this soundbar to make it a complete 5.1 surround sound system.

Features of the Sonos playbar :

Sonos’ band is classic. This is a time-tested model. The Sonos Playbar has a discreet aesthetic and delivers quality sound without distracting your audience.

Distortion is kept to a minimum so the audience hears sounds the way they should. With Speech Enhancer, dialogs can be heard no matter what is happening in the background.

You can also add a wireless subwoofer and surround speakers to this soundbar to make it a 5.1 surround sound system.

Design

Bose Soundbar 700 vs. Sonos Playbar - Which Is Better?

After all, Bose and Sonos are credited with making the best audio equipment available today. However, the design that each company uses gives its products unique features that consumers value. Let’s take a look at how each of these brands addresses the design of their unique but comparative soundbars. 

Bose Soundbar 700 design:

Bose designed the 700 as one of the finest soundbars in the world. The panel itself contains 4 mid-range speakers and 1 center channel speaker. Proprietary drivers are specially designed to enable low-profile transducers to provide excellent clarity while maintaining a slim profile.

The recessed ports, which Bose calls “QuietPort technology,” significantly reduce distortion. PhaseGuide technology directs multidirectional sound, making the audience feel like the sound is coming from locations outside the soundbar itself.

Bluetooth and Wi-Fi connectivity allows you to transfer content and control your device without using cables. Even when music is playing, an 8-microphone array built into the end of the soundbar ensures that even the weakest voice command is picked up.

If you are not sure if the Bose Soundbar 700 can hear you, the light bar will help indicate the status of Alexa or your Google Assistant; indicator lights show if your soundbar is listening, thinking, or speaking.

This soundbar has been designed to work with most devices. Inputs and outputs include HDMI Audio Return Channel (ARC), Enhanced ARC (eARC), Consumer Electronics Control (CEC), Optical TOSLink, Power, and USB.

As noted in the list of cons, the Bose Soundbar 700 does not have an HDMI input port. The soundbar supports Dolby Digital and DTS formats. Designed with ADAPTiQ Audio Calibration, the Bose Soundbar 700 has optimized acoustics to match your environment and deliver the best possible sound.

The Bose Soundbar 700 is available in both white and black. The sleek, modern design will fit perfectly into any interior. The Bose Soundbar 700 is 2.25 “high, 38.5” wide, and 4.25 “deep, weighs just 10.5 pounds, and can be installed under your TV or on the roof of your entertainment center. 

The Bose Soundbar 700 is a 3.0 channel range. However, Bose has designed this soundbar to integrate with other 700 Series speakers, allowing users to expand their system to a 5.1-channel configuration if they wish. 

Sonos Playbar panel design:

The Sonos Playbar is an older soundbar. However, it is still used today as one of the best soundbars available on the market.

With nine Class D amplifiers, matched dedicated drivers deliver natural sound anywhere in the room. With 6 of these drivers focused on mid-range tones and the remaining 3 tweeters, the phased speaker array matches sound to visuals.

While the Sonos Playbar doesn’t include Bluetooth technology, it does connect to your Wi-Fi network to enable streaming services. Using the Sonos app, users can enable Speech Enhancement, which helps clarify any dialogue, whether the characters are whispering or the action dampens the sound.

Buttons on the side panel let you adjust the volume and play comfort even without a phone or remote control. LED indicators show the status of Sonos components and indicate if the soundbar is muted. 

Like the Bose Soundbar 700, the Sonos Playbar does not have an HDMI input port. However, it does include two Ethernet ports, which in some areas can be more reliable than wireless connections.

There is also an optical audio input. Dolby Digital is supported using the Sonos Playbar; DTS, which is less common but often found on Blu-ray, is not supported. 

The Sonos Playbar can be wall-mounted or placed in your entertainment center, just like any of the top seven in our guide. Anywhere Sonos Playbar automatically adjusts to provide optimal sound in any environment.

Measuring 3.35 “high, 35.43” wide, and 5.51 “deep when seated in the entertainment center, the bar can be rotated horizontally when installed, creating a slim profile of just 3.35”.

The Sonos Playbar is slightly heavier than the Bose Soundbar 700 and weighs just 11.9 pounds. 

The Sonos Playbar is another 3.0 channel soundbar. As with the Bose Soundbar 700, Sonos has engineered its Playbar to be easily upgraded to 5.1 when paired with other Sonos products. The subwoofer is also not included with this purchase. 

Tune

Both Bose and Sonos understand that consumers want products that are easy to customize. In fact, Bose and Sonos offer apps that give users complete control over their soundbars and make setup incredibly easy. 

Bose Soundbar 700 setup process:

Setting up the Bose Soundbar 700 is easy. 

  1. Bose recommends placing the soundbar in the desired location, at least 1–3 feet away from other wireless equipment. The soundbar can be installed directly in the entertainment center. (You can also purchase a wall mount kit if you prefer to hang the unit.)
  2. Once placed in the desired location, connect your TV to the Soundbar 700.
  3. Plug the soundbar into a power source because, as we mentioned earlier , the TV cannot power the soundbar. The light bar will turn amber on after a successful power-on.
  4. Once connected, download the Bose Music app from Google Play or Apple Store to your phone or tablet. The app will contain instructions that guide you through the final setup process. User friendly, clear instructions and setup in minutes. 

Sonos Playbar setup process:

Sonos designed the Playbar as a plug-and-play device. As with the Bose Soundbar 700, the setup is extremely simple.

  1. Place your Sonos Playbar anywhere you want. If placed in an entertainment center, place it at least 2 inches away from the TV. A wall mount will need to be purchased from Sonos if this is the desired location. 
  2. Disconnect any existing home theater or surround sound components from the TV. Connect any external devices such as a Blu-ray player or game console directly to your TV. 
  3. Connect an optical audio cable from your TV’s digital audio output to a digital audio input on the Sonos Playbar. 
  4. Connect the power cord to the Playbar and plug it in.
  5. Download the Sonos app from Google Play or the Apple App Store to your phone. As with the Bose Soundbar 700, the app walks you through the rest of the setup process so you can get started quickly. 

Sound quality: which is better?

In the end, after all the inputs, spec reviews, and one-to-one listening sessions, the winner is the Bose Soundbar 700. With a slightly more accurate response and less compression at maximum volume, the Bose Soundbar 700 delivers superior sound quality.

Conclusion

Both the Bose Soundbar 700 and the Sonos Playbar are quality products. Neither will leave you disappointed.

However, Bose has an edge over the Playbar because it has newer technology and broader feature integration.

That being said, Sonos is offering new models that might be better suited, including Beam with Amazon Alexa and some smart home features.