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IFA 2018: Sonos Amp Connects The Old With The New

Sonos has made three announcements at IFA 2018 concerning application interfaces, a amplifier, and a new partnership.

The first announcement features a new set of application programming interfaces (APIs) that Sonos claims will improve integration with other platforms and services in a smart-home ecosystem.

On the hardware side of things, the new Sonos Amp can work with four speakers, rather than just two like its earlier iteration, with an output of 125 watts per channel at 8 ohms. This front features an IR receiver, a status light, a play/pause button and volume up and down buttons. On the back, however, there are two ethernet ports, RCA, line-in ports, and HMDI Arc for hooking up the amp to a TV. There’s also support for AirPlay 2 and compatibility with over 100 streaming services.

Sonos says the Amp has been designed to connect all AV equipment, regardless of whether it’s digital, analogue, or streaming. It also features a centralised heatsink to stop it from overheating, and custom detachable speaker connectors that can be replaced when required.

No pricing or a release date for Australia has been announced yet, though there is a recommended manufacturer’s price of US$599.

The third announcement involves a partnership agreement with a company called Sonance involving ‘architectural speakers’ that are built into walls, ceilings and the outdoors, therefore removing often unsightly components from view.

The so-called architectural speakers will be designed to work with the new amplifier. When paired with the Amp, the Sonance speakers can use Sonos’ TruePlayTuning software to analyse a room’s acoustics and adjust their woofers and tweeters accordingly for optimal sound. Sonos says it will sell and market the first products emerging from this speaker collaboration early next year, without discussing any pricing or availability.

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