I’m a big fan of the Sonos music system. When they recently asked if I’d like to review the new AirPlay integration feature, I was pretty excited. A few weeks later, an Apple Airport Express Base Station and some cables arrived with a diagram of how to hook it up. It’s pretty easy. You connect the base station via network cable and one audio cable then plug it into a nearby outlet. After, you fire up the airport utility, name the base unit, register it on the network, reboot it, and you are good to go. The whole process took less than 5 minutes. That’s one of my favorite parts of the Sonos system: everything is super easy and practically idiot proof.
Once the system was set up, it was over to the iPod program. You select a playlist/song/album/artist/whatever, hit play, hit the AirPlay button, choose “Sonos,” and the music starts coming out of the speakers. If you have more than one Sonos unit (like I do), you have to choose a “default connection,” but you can switch to a different unit any time you choose. I have two base stations, one for each of my Sonos units.
You can use any iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, or any other unit that supports AirPlay and is on your network. It’s cool that, if you turn on AirPlay on the iPad then choose Netflix, the connection will persist, and you can hear Netflix playing through your Sonos system. It’s pretty useful because the native iPad speaker just sucks.
To be clear, Sonos did send me a complimentary Apple Airport Express Base Station as part of this review. That said, I have purchased other Sonos products in the past and plan on expanding my system in the future. The Sonos system not only sounds that good, but it makes playing music all over your house wirelessly really easy, and it’s a snap to upgrade or expand. If you’re looking for a product to let you play music throughout your house or apartment, I recommend giving Sonos a look.
photo credit: Photospin