Sonos’ new hotly anticipated Wi-Fi-connected bookshelf speakers, the Era 100 and Era 300, are inching closer to their March 28th release and can now be preordered at multiple retailers. There’s been quite a bit of hype and buildup for these new speakers, thanks in no small part to a mountain of leaks and teases but also because the Era 100 and 300 are kicking off new lines for Sonos while the sun will set on popular models like the Sonos One and Play:3.
The new Sonos Era speakers will incorporate more features into the meatier parts of the Sonos home speaker lineup, like Bluetooth, line-in, and new spatial audio capabilities. So if you’re hyped and want to get your own at launch, here’s more about the Era 100 and Era 300 speakers, including where you can order them from.
Where to preorder the Sonos Era 100
The upcoming Sonos Era 100 costs $249 and is expected to arrive on March 28th. The Era 100 is currently available for preorder in black or white from Best Buy, B&H Photo, or direct from Sonos.
If you’ve seen or considered the Sonos One or Sonos One SL before now, you should know that this is the next in the evolution of those Wi-Fi smart speakers. The Era 100 looks like most previous Sonos speakers, though it’s a little larger than the Sonos One, thanks to having two tweeters instead of one and a slightly larger woofer for bigger mids and bassy sounds. In addition to its nifty Bluetooth and line-in connectivity features, the Era 100 has a physical mute switch on its back to disable its far-field microphones if you don’t want it listening for hot words. For those who like using their smart speakers to call up a voice assistant, the Era 100 supports Sonos’ own Voice Control and Amazon Alexa — Google Assistant support is notably omitted.
Sonos’ Era 100 smart speaker is a replacement for the older Sonos One, utilizing two tweeters (left and right) and one larger woofer. In addition to Wi-Fi, the Era 100 also supports Bluetooth audio and line-in playback via an optional 3.5mm to USB-C adapter.
Where to preorder the Sonos Era 300
Like its smaller, less weird-looking sibling, the hourglass-shaped Sonos Era 300 is set to arrive on March 28th. It will run $449 in either black or white, and it’s currently available to preorder from Best Buy, B&H Photo, or Sonos.
The Sonos Era 300 takes the “room-filing sound” cliche quite seriously, as its six drivers are pointed in various directions (though, unlike the Apple HomePod, it is designed to sit in front of you). The Era 300 matches the Era 100 in the feature department, with playback available via Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, or line-in over USB-C, but the star of the show is the Era 300’s spatial audio chops. It supports Dolby Atmos and can play spatial tracks from both Apple Music and Amazon Music.
Also, if you’re really into spatial sound for your movie watching, two Era 300s can be paired with a Sonos Arc and Sonos Sub to make a Frankenstein’s monster of a 7.1.4 home theater setup. The math in that setup may be confusing, but it’s safe to bet that pricey combination will sound pretty cool.
The hourglass shaped Sonos Era 300 has six drivers, four tweeters pointing forward, left, right, and up, and a pair of angled woofers, to spread sound around for spatial audio and greater stereo presence. Like its smaller Era 100 sibling, this larger bookshelf speaker supports playback over Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and line-in via USB-C.
An important accessory
I’m letting my own personal proclivities show a little here, but I think a Sonos 3.5mm to USB-C line-in adapter is an absolute must-have if you own a turntable and plan on buying an Era 100 or Era 300. With it, you can plug in most newer turntables and send the audio from your spinning records to a full Sonos multi-speaker setup. Sure, you may already own this kind of adapter if you bought an Android phone in the past, but $19.99 isn’t complete highway robbery for what is hopefully a quality adapter. It’s available to preorder at Sonos, Best Buy, and B&H Photo.
And yes, for the purists out there — playing an analog audio source, converting it to digital, and sending it out over Wi-Fi is a little illogical, but it’s damned convenient, and that’s okay.