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So Many Sounds Part 2

So Many Sounds, Part 2
by Gary Woods

Last week I told you that we we’re thinking about re-doing our music set up and how I was dreading having to run wires again so I decided to see what my options are. As it happens the premier company as far as wireless audio is concerned is Sonos,  which is headquartered here in Santa Barbara but is definitely an international company.

When you’re looking at speaker systems there are basically 2 types. Those types are Active where the amplifier is in the enclosure with the speaker and Passive where the speaker is powered by an amplifier connected by a cable to the speaker. What I have now is Passive with all those wires running through walls and under floors connected to my AV Receiver but for an updated system Active is really the way to go and preferably a wireless Active system.

As it happens Sonos makes 3 different active wireless speaker systems, the Play:1 ($199), Play:3 ($299) and Play:5 ($399) which can be connected via Wi-Fi to your local network or they all have an Ethernet connection on the back if you still want to run those wires. Each of the units 1, 3 & 5 give the user progressively louder sound and deeper bass and what’s cool is that each one of the Play series has both left and right channels built-in so you get a full stereo sound. Or, if you wanted to get 2 of them you could spread out the listening field.

Speakers are great but how do I get them integrated into my system? If I wanted to keep using my Yamaha AV Receiver I could use their Connect ($349) device which is an un-amplified unit designed to run into an existing amplifier or receiver as a music source. Or, if I wanted to start over I could get the Connect Amp ($499) which has a 110 Watt stereo amplifier which puts out 55 watts per channel. The Connect Amp is designed for a single pair of speakers but it can power a maximum of two pairs of speakers as long as the speakers are rated at 8 ohms.

Next week I’ll look at my options for our Home Theatre!

If you have any suggestions or questions for me please drop me a note at or see my column on the Internet at or call me at (805) 729-0910

Gary Woods is the Computer Trainer for the Santa Barbara Association of Realtors and he is a Broker/Associate at Sotheby’s International Realty.