The Best Multi-Room Audio Systems for Your Smart Home

Ready to upgrade your home’s entertainment situation? Perhaps it’s time to go shopping for a multi-room audio system. While the best-known ones are made by Sonos, many brands are producing wireless speaker setups so you can jam out (or listen to podcast) in every room of your house. Read on to see our top picks for the best multi room audio systems for your smart home.

What is a Multi-Room Audio System?

A multi-room audio system is a broad category of products that allow you to listen to music in multiple rooms. Whether you can listen to different songs in different rooms, or the same music in every room, depends on the system you choose. The music you play can come from your own music collection on CDs or your computer, or from streaming services like Spotify or Amazon Music.

Multi-room audio systems are typically wireless and controlled via smartphone. This allows you to put speakers anywhere you want inside or outside your home.

It might sound expensive to have the luxury of music playing in every room of your house. But since you have the ability to add speakers one by one, it can be more affordable than you think. Plus, the ability to listen to different songs or artists in every room is a huge bonus when you have different generations under one roof.

Audio Pro Addon C3 Multi-Room Speakers

Coming in at $299, the Audio Pro Addon C3 Multi-Room Speakers is a fantastic start to a multi-room audio system. While it’s small in size, it packs a punch when it comes to sound, with plenty of bass. If you like streaming music via Bluetooth, this is one of the best-sounding speakers you’ll find. It’s rechargeable, wireless, and battery powered, with built in wi-fi.

And with multi-room functionality, you can play one song throughout the whole house or different songs in different rooms. It’s compatible with Alexa, so you can play music using just your voice. With an easy to use smartphone app, you can stream music from Apple AirPlay, Spotify, Tidal or numerous other services.

Audio Pro is a longstanding Swedish speaker company, and this is a great-looking speaker. It has a simple, classic design with a leather handle on top and comes in black, gray, or white. Overall, this is a fantastic speaker with amazing sound quality that will look great in your home, too.

ProsCons
Great sound qualitySmartphone app can be buggy
Classic designExpensive
Great features for the price
Best Multi-Room Audio Systems Reviews

Sonos Five

If you’re looking to start your multi-room audio system off on the best foot possible spring for the Sonos Five. While it costs around $500, it has the most superior, room-filling sound of just about any speaker you’ll find. If you’re a music lover who really desires the best sound possible for their multi-speaker system, start here.

The Sonos Five is somewhat bulky in size, but its size also lends it the most powerful bass of any speaker in this article. That amazing sound quality was tuned by famed producer Giles Martin and offers deep bass, plus smart stereo sound if you turn the speaker horizontally — great for watching movies. Thanks to the Sonos app, it’s also incredibly easy to make this the center point of a multi-room audio system. (And thankfully, Sonos has less expensive speaker models you can put in other, less-used rooms.)

The minimalist design of the Sonos Five should fit into any room. Really, the only downside of the Sonos Five is that it lacks Bluetooth, which may be a deal-breaker for some. If you’re used to having visitors connect their phone to your system to play music, the Sonos Five won’t cut it. But if you’re an Apple user, you can accomplish that via Airplay.

ProsCons
Great sound qualityBulky
Volume gets very loudExpensive
Easy to manage multiple speakersLacks Bluetooth
Best Multi-Room Audio Systems Reviews

Sonos One

The Sonos One was Sonos’s first entry into the smart speaker world, and an impressive one at that. If you’re devoted to using Alexa or Google Assistant but also want really amazing sound quality and multi-room functionality, you can’t go wrong. While it’s certainly more expensive than an Amazon Echo or Google Home, the fantastic sound makes it worth the $199 price tag.

With six internal microphones, your digital assistant will have no trouble understanding you even with background noise. And with Spotify Connect, you can request songs by simply saying them out loud. The Sonos S2 app is highly intuitive and makes multi-room audio easy. It has a great feature called “room groups” which remembers frequently grouped speakers, like if you have multiple speakers on your patio. This makes getting the party started faster and easier.

Like the Sonos Five, it lacks Bluetooth, but Apple AirPlay compatibility generally makes that a moot point. If you’re an Android user, you may want to consider a Bose instead. But for anyone else, the Sonos One is an excellent, budget-friendly choice for multi-room audio with smart speaker functionality.

ProsCons
Speaker is attractiveMediocre sound quality
Apple Airplay 2 compatibleSmartphone app isn't very intuitive
Great, clear soundExpensive for the quality
Best Multi-Room Audio Systems Reviews

Bluesound Pulse Flex 2i Portable Wireless Multi-Room Smart Speaker

The Bluesound Pulse Flex 2i Portable Wireless Multi-Room Smart Speaker is a small wireless speaker that you can use to play audio across multiple rooms. At $299, it isn’t cheap, but it has some good features including both wi-fi network connectivity and Bluetooth, as well as Apple Airplay 2 compatibility. It also integrates with Siri or Amazon Alexa, although you’ve got to have a Siri or Alexa-enabled device for it to work with.

Where the Bluesound Pulse Flex 2i falls short is with the sound quality. This isn’t a speaker that’s well-suited to jamming out with; the sound is too closed-in and simply isn’t up to par. It might do the job for listening to podcasts, but for the money, you may want to look elsewhere. The smartphone app also isn’t the most intuitive, especially compared to Sonos.

ProsCons
Speaker is attractiveMediocre sound quality
Apple Airplay 2 compatibleSmartphone app isn't very intuitive
Great, clear soundExpensive for the quality
Best Multi-Room Audio Systems Reviews

Denon HEOS 5 Wireless Speaker

The Denon HEOS 5 Wireless Speaker is one of the larger wireless speakers on this list, with sound quality that gives Sonos a run for its money. The larger body houses four drivers and impressive bass for impressive sound. Nonetheless, it’s still compact enough to fit into just about any room. At $399 it’s quite pricey, but if sound quality matters to you, this is a good pick.

And unlike Sonos models, the Denon HEOS 5 does indeed support Bluetooth. This makes it a great option if you often have guests, so they can stream music from their phones. However, the HEOS app only runs on Android, iOS, and Amazon Kindle devices. That means there’s no simple or fast way to play music off your laptop or desktop computer, which many folks may find frustrating.

You may notice some distortion with deep bass at higher volumes, but overall the sound is impressively clear for any music lover. The Denon HEOS 5 also works with all your favorite streaming services including Amazon Music and Tidal.

ProsCons
Compatible with iOS and AndroidWi-fi can be finicky
Great, clear soundDeep bass distorts
Works with many streaming services
Best Multi-Room Audio Systems Reviews

Final Thoughts

Now you’ve learned more about these powerful multi-room systems that can play music all over your house via voice assistants. Whether you’re loyal to Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant, there’s a system out there to make your life easier and more fun. And no matter what your budget, you can find a multi-room audio setup that will work for you. Happy listening!

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