Sonos fans have been waiting ages for a home theater subwoofer cheaper than the $749 Sub, and now it’s here. After design leaks and a delayed launch, Sonos today officially introduces the Sub Mini. Its price is $429, which is honestly lower than I expected; I thought this thing would cost no less than $499, but I’m glad I was wrong. The Sub Mini is available for pre-order today and will be released on October 6th. It is available in black or white, both of which have a matte finish.
How “mini” is the Sub Mini? It weighs 14 pounds, less than half the 36.3-pound sub. It measures 12 inches tall compared to the Sub’s 15.3 inches, and the cylindrical design has a diameter of 9.1 inches. These differences in size and weight mean that Sonos’ two subwoofers now have their own recommended use cases.
Sonos says the Sub Mini is designed for use in small to medium-sized rooms; the regular Sub is still best equipped for the great outdoors. The company plans to pair the Sub Mini with the Beam or Ray for home theater audio. If you’re buying it for music, the Sub Mini pairs well with a single or stereo Sonos One speaker or Ikea’s Symfonisk products. “Sub Mini is also recommended for small Amp-powered bookshelf speakers,” Sonos says in its website FAQ.
But those looking for the best audio experience should always opt for the existing Sub. If you own the flagship Arc soundbar or one (or two) Sonos Fives, this is the way to go. The same will likely be true for the company’s planned successor Five.
There’s nothing stopping you from using the Sub Mini with any other Sonos product – even the short-lived Playbase is supported – but the dividing line is clear. If you own a high-end Sonos speaker, the Sub is for you. If you’re trying to save money or your system is in a smaller space, the Sub Mini might be the most practical solution.
The Sub and Sub Mini share similar design features. The Sub Mini features two 6-inch force-cancelling woofers that produce “amazingly deep, dynamic bass while minimizing buzz, rattle, or distortion so you feel more immersed in every scene and every song,” according to Sonos. Center cutout maximizes airflow to improve bass response.
Each of Sonos’ subwoofers can hit 25Hz, but volume is really what separates them. Product Manager Scott Fink told me that the Sub can deliver three to four times louder output than the Sub Mini. But there are other differences. You can include multiple Subs in a home theater setup for the ultimate bass experience, but that’s not possible with the Sub Mini. It’s just one per soundbar.
As with the standard Sub, Sonos creates a dedicated 5GHz wireless connection between the soundbar and subwoofer to prevent dropouts and other audio frustrations. You can adjust the bass level in the Sonos app, and as with the company’s other recent speakers, adding the Sub Mini to your system should only require a quick tap of your phone at the top of the product.
Like any other home theater setup, adding a Sub to your Sonos system can really take it to the next level. This allows the subwoofer to handle the bass while allowing your soundbar or speakers to focus much more on the highs and mids instead of having to juggle the entire frequency range. Hopefully it will be the same with the Sub Mini, but on a smaller scale. Stay tuned for our full review coming soon.
With its home theater portfolio now complete, Sonos will soon be looking to other products. Last month, I detailed the company’s next flagship desktop speaker, dubbed the Optimo 2, which is expected to arrive in the coming months.