Sonos Sub Mini review: There's so much oomph in the "little" Mini
With the Sonos Sub Mini, the manufacturer once again shook a subwoofer out of its sleeve after a break of several years. Read here what experiences I had with it during my two-week test phase.
Sonos previously offered the third-generation Sonos Sub in the subwoofer segment. However, this is currently nowhere cheaper than 650 euros and has not been updated for a long time. That's why it still comes with the old design language of Sonos.
For some time now, the manufacturer has been expanding its range to include cheaper alternatives to the existing ones Products. It sometimes started with that Roam and the Ray on and now it's the turn of the Sonos Sub Mini to complement the Sonos Sub (Gen. 3). This has a smaller form factor and a lower price point than its big sibling. Nevertheless, the small mini should deliver rousing basses.
The device has now been standing next to my television shelf for two weeks. In this article, I want to clarify whether the Sonos Sub Mini can deliver on the company's promises.
Jump to section
Unboxing and initial setup
The packaging of the Sub Mini is very large and heavy. So even here the name "mini" isn't real Program - see the design section of the report for details. The subwoofer weighs 6,35 kilograms, so you should consider the car or a bike with a luggage rack if you have to pick up the Mini from a parcel station.
The look of the box is the same as with other models. Sonos opted for a light box again. It features a picture of the Sub Mini, a Sonos logo, and an inscription with the model's name. It also has two handles, making it easier to carry. The content is clear as always - the Sub Mini is contained in a white fleece, a power cable and various instructions. An Ethernet cable is not included despite the existing connection.
The initial setup is (almost) the same as always. You need the Sonos app again for this. After opening this, the pop-up prompting you to set up the Sub Mini should appear immediately, provided that it has been connected to the power supply. Alternatively, the setup can be started manually via the app settings. Then you have to scan the NFC chip on the top of the cylinder. Now a connection to the WLAN network has to be established, which even works automatically if a system already exists. Finally, the app installs any updates on the device.
That's not all, though, because now the Sub Mini still needs to be paired with a compatible Product be coupled. These are basically all newer, stationary Sonos models, with the app immediately suggesting available speakers in the network. Optionally, you can then set up TruePlay, which should improve the sound even more. However, this requires an iOS device. I explained exactly how it works here .
Design and workmanship
The Sonos Sub Mini is larger than you would expect from the "mini" name. It weighs 6,35 kilograms, has a diameter of 230 millimeters and is 305 millimeters high. Compared to the third generation Sub, it has a cylindrical shape. When it comes to colors, you have the choice between a matte white and a matte black.
The subwoofer fits seamlessly next to current SonosProducts a. It is completely bare, only on the top there is a company logo and in the middle you can find the notch for the amplifier and the woofer. Unfortunately, you won't find any touch controls like on other models. Buttons for controlling the playback would have been very practical, but I would have imagined the setting options for the bass to be even more helpful. This can only be adjusted via the volume menu in the app. Last but not least, the already known function key was installed on the back, not next to the connections, as is usually the case.
Speaking of which: Sonos placed the Ethernet port and the power connection on the underside without planning a small passage for the cables as in the Beam. With regard to the longevity of the cables, I am somewhat critical of this. Thanks to the rubber knobs, the subwoofer at least stands up straight and doesn't wobble.
As is typical for Sonos, the processing is of course at a very high level. I have nothing to complain about here.
Sound: what does a subwoofer actually do?
Inside the Sonos Sub Mini are two Class-D amplifiers and two inward-firing six-inch force-cancellation woofers. This is there to block out unwanted vibrations, ultimately making the sound clearer with less distortion. The connection to a soundbar or other speakers is made via the network with WLAN or Ethernet. It was always very reliable for me, there were never any crashes or noticeable latencies. Unlike the third generation Sub, the Sonos Sub Mini cannot link to a second of its kind.
Now some might ask themselves why you need a subwoofer at all. Since we've never answered this before, I'll do so now. Ordinary loudspeakers serve as the sound source, which means that you can hear the sounds of music, films or series through them. A subwoofer like the Sub Mini affects this sound only by amplifying the low tones, i.e. the bass. The intensity of this can be set as beforeprocustomize in the Sonos app.
So much for theory, let's get to practice. This is the first subwoofer I've used, so I didn't know what to expect from it beforehand. I was a bit worried that some content would not sound as good due to the increased bass. Instead, however, the sound is only adequately 'refined' in most situations, particularly movies, TV shows, rap, hip-hop, and EDM. Occasionally I turned down the strength of the bass a bit, for example with various pop songs or TV shows. I would say that with level 5 you have to adjust the bass the least.
The Sonos app is also the control center for the Sub Mini. The app is available for iOS, Android, Windows and macOS. This has not changed since my last Sonos test, which is why I will only go into the areas relevant to the Sub Mini in the following part.
That starts with the setup. As soon as this is completed, the bass can be turned up and down via the volume settings as described. To get there, you have to change the volume in the Now Playing view and then press the settings icon. There you can then change the bass in a range from -10 to +10. I think the point could have been placed a little more clearly. Also, it would have been handy if you could set presets for different genres. In the settings of the app you can only switch the connection to Ethernet, remove the Sub Mini or assign it to another room.
Prices and availability
The manufacturer calls for an RRP of 499 euros for the Sonos Sub Mini. You can buy the subwoofer here:
Sonos Sub Mini: Conclusion
The Sonos Sub Mini masters its main task with flying colours. It gives music, films and series a pleasant, additional punch. However, the configuration of the bass level could be more flexible and the possibility of setting presets would also be desirable. The bass never drowns out the actual sound too much.
I still have a few criticisms of the design. In my opinion, the situation with the connections could have been solved differently and touch surfaces on the top would have simplified the control a lot.
So who should get this? The Sonos Sub Mini is suitable for people who want to set up a small home cinema setup at home with little effort. Otherwise you don't really need a subwoofer, since the bass is provided by SonosProducts is already very good.
Thank you for providing the Sonos Sub Mini!