Data obtained January 2020. Prices are subject to change and should be used only as a general guide.
What are multiroom speakers?
Multiroom speakers allow you to listen to the same device in any room in your house. Speakers are connected through a network and are controlled with an app on your smartphone, tablet or computer.
How do multiroom speakers work?
When systems like Sonos and Bose connect to the internet, it forms a mesh network, instead of Wi-Fi to stream music. This keeps bandwidth and data usage in tact while you’re grooving to tunes.
Why should I consider multiroom speakers?
With multiroom speakers, play music anywhere in your home with the tap of a button on your phone, tablet or other device. You can play different music in each room, or play the same music from every speaker to keep listening to your favorite songs as you walk from room to room.
Most multiroom speakers allow you to play music or podcasts from your digital library or a streaming service.
Advantages of multiroom speakers
Quick to install and easy to move if you change homes, or isolate speakers for separate listening
Stream music across multiple speakers
Play content from your digital library or any streaming service
Unlike Bluetooth speakers, Wi-Fi speakers won’t be interrupted by calls or texts
Disadvantages of multiroom speakers
The cost of multiple speakers can add up quickly
Speakers are often not compatible with other brands
Multiroom speakers are not as portable as Bluetooth speakers
How to compare multiroom speakers
Choosing the right speaker for you depends on how much you’re willing to pay, how easy it is to use, sound quality and how well it supports the platforms and streaming services you want to use.
You can find speakers at a range of prices, quality and compatibility.
Maximum room size
Volume capacity (decibels)
From $199 to $1,800
Small to very large
86dB to 110dB
Volume capacity measures the maximum volume for a speaker. However, it’s not necessarily a volume you regularly listen to. To put it into perspective, a loud conversation is around 70 dB, a typical lawnmower is 90dB and a chainsaw can be as loud as 110dB.
When choosing a multiroom speaker, consider the following additional features:
Speakers should support the streaming services you use, such as Spotify, Tidal, Amazon, Apple Music and Pandora.
Make sure the speakers you choose will be easy to add additional speakers and devices to in the future. If you’re interested in building a smart home, look for speakers compatible with Amazon Alexa, Google Home and other IoT devices.
Look for a speaker system that is easy to control from your phone or smart device. If you want to use voice commands to control your speaker, check out smart speakers instead. Or, consider the Sonos One, which has smart speaker capabilities.
If your speaker has Bluetooth or Airplay capability, you won’t lose precious playing time if it malfunctions or has connection issues.
Choose a speaker that’s compatible with any accessories you want to use like floor stands, wall mounts or other accessories to make your new speakers fit perfectly into your home.
While functionality is key when it comes to speakers, you want a speaker that blends into your home.
With a multiroom speaker system, start with just one quality speaker and add more over time as your budget allows. But it’s best to stick with the same brand.
If you want a speaker that can understand voice commands and act as a personal assistant, a smart speaker may be better suited to your needs.
How did we choose these products?
To choose our list of the best multiroom speakers, we compared price, connectivity and volume capacity of popular models, factoring our own personal experiences and third-party online reviews.
Sarah Brandon is an editor at Finder. She has a degree in Psychology from New York University and loves learning about why people do what they do. Sarah has researched and written about a wide range of topics, from pool fences to private jets to personal loans. But no matter the subject, her number one priority is figuring out what information our readers need to make the best decisions.
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