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Sonos PLAY:1 Compact Wireless Speaker

It would be cool to fill your home with music, playing in every room as you move around. I've seen houses like this, with speakers embedded in the walls, from living room to kitchen to master bath -- and using products from Sonos.

Sonos has developed an impressive line of wireless HiFi products, with wireless speakers including a sound bar and subwoofer, audio bridges from your existing stereo system or to your existing speakers, and network bridges to form a dedicated home audio network.

Yet while the vision sounds great, starting down this path seems like such a huge commitment. Which brings us to the Sonos PLAY:1 compact wireless speaker -- a mini yet powerful speaker that delivers the promise of in-house audio starting at $199.

The PLAY:1 speaker is definitely compact at 6.36 x 4.69 x 4.69 inches, and solid at 4.08 pounds. It features one tweeter and one 3.5" mid-woofer, each with dedicated amplifiers. And it puts out clear sound with volume to fill multiple rooms of a house.

As a bonus, it's also humidity resistant, so you can use it in a bathroom with a running shower. And it has dedicated controls on the top for direct access, to play/pause, skip tracks, and adjust the volume.

The important detail here is that the wireless in the Sonos system is not based on Bluetooth, limited by the 30-foot range from a paired phone or tablet. Instead, Sonos uses your home Wi-Fi network, which means you can control a speaker from across the house, and control each speaker from multiple devices.

You and your family then can use the Sonos apps on each of your devices, or the desktop software, to control the playback and add new music to the queued playlist for the speaker.

Plus you can add additional speakers and control them from one device -- to play two as a stereo pair, synchronize playback across different rooms, or choose to play different music in each room.

You then can stream selections from your entire music iTunes and Amazon music libraries (including up to 16 Macs, PCs, and network storage devices), as well as popular music services and Internet radio (including Pandora, Spotify, Google Play, and SirusXM).

The Sonos PLAY:1 wireless speaker is more than an entry-level starter product -- It's a great stand-alone device to bring a shared music experience to your house.

Although it's admittedly also a tempting entry into the possibilities of whole-house audio.

Find the Sonos PLAY:1 Wireless Speaker on Amazon.com

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