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Sonos fixes Arc and Sub issues that frustrated some customers for months

Sonos fixes Arc and Sub issues that frustrated some customers for months


The company has restored old volume settings and resolved a Trueplay bug that reduced the Sub’s performance

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An image of the front of the Sonos Arc soundbar with a TV in the background.
Photo by Chris Welch / The Verge

Ever since a system update released over two months ago, some owners of the Sonos Arc and Sub have complained about reduced performance from their pricey home theater devices. This thread on the company’s forum is a good chronicle of the frustrations. Customers noticed that the Arc had lost some oomph at lower volumes, and for those who had run Trueplay tuning on their setup, the Sub had been robbed of its bottom-end growl.

Now, Sonos says it has resolved both issues as of the latest update. Version 14.18 was rolled out yesterday. And while the official changelog only mentions “bug fixes and performance enhancements,” a Sonos employee went into much greater detail in the forum thread:

With the 14.18 software update, both of these issues have been addressed, and the Enhanced Clarity for Arc adjustments are retained. There was a clear preference within our community for the previous volume settings, and these have been restored. This will be apparent immediately after updating to 14.18.

The Trueplay issue has been fixed. Customers who experienced a lower Sub level after performing Trueplay after updating to 14.12 will need to update their systems and then perform a new Trueplay tuning in order to address these improvements in their system. Customers will hear a more powerful low end response, meaning any Sub level adjustments made after 14.12 should no longer be required.

As mentioned at the beginning there, the 14.12 update that caused all this trouble included some beneficial enhancements to voice clarity on the flagship Arc soundbar. Those improvements are sticking around, but the company is giving customers what they asked for and restoring the volume settings that were in place prior to that update. I’m curious as to how Sonos balanced those objectives, but maybe the Arc still has some remaining headroom to work with.

The recently released Sub Mini was never impacted by the same Trueplay issue that plagued the Sub. And Sonos notes that “home theater configurations without a Sub were unaffected, including standalone soundbars and those bonded with surrounds only.”

With this situation now ironed out, Sonos fans can look forward to the company’s next flagship smart speaker. Codenamed Optimo 2, the device will deliver an immersive listening experience with drivers that fire in nearly all directions. It’s set to be released in the coming months — perhaps as a replacement for the Sonos Five — alongside a mic-free Optimo 2 SL.