You probably clicked on this review because you’re in the market for a top-notch Bluetooth speaker. Well, let me tell you right off the bat that I got my hands on the Sonos Move 2 in September 2023, and since then, my ears have been treated to an auditory experience like no other in the world of wireless speakers.
Celebrating its fourth anniversary in September 2023, the original Sonos Move paved the way for portable audio excellence. Now, Sonos has introduced its successor, aptly named the Sonos Move 2.
The Sonos Move 2 is, without a doubt, one of the best small-format connected speakers on the market as of early 2023. Its stunning design, impeccable connectivity, user-friendly interface, and exceptional sound quality make it a must-have for audiophiles and music enthusiasts alike. If you’re looking for a portable speaker that ticks all the boxes, the Sonos Move 2 should be at the top of your list. It’s a worthy successor to the original Move and a testament to Sonos’ commitment to delivering outstanding audio experiences.
Sonos Move 2: Video Review
|Sonos Move 2
|9.4 x 6.3 x 4.9 inches/24 x 16 x 12.5 cm
|Black, White, Olive
|Battery life (rated)
|Bluetooth 5.0, Wi-Fi
Sonos Move 2: Design
Upon laying eyes on the product itself, it immediately exuded a premium and sturdy feel, thanks to its choice of materials and the meticulous attention to detail. The Move 2 left no room for complaints when it came to its finishes; everything was clean, precise, and in its rightful place. Even though the black variant of the speaker was prone to collecting fingerprints and dust, this did little to detract from its overall elegance.
Handling the Move 2 was a breeze, thanks to the ingenious rear handle, a concept carried over from the original Move. This design element, as practical in 2023 as it was at its inception, made carrying the speaker a cinch.
The placement of keys on the top and back of the device was ergonomic, ensuring a pleasant user experience. However, there was a significant “but” that came to light once I unpacked the product: its size and weight. Between the Move 1 and the Move 2, there had been no reduction in dimensions. In fact, the Move 2, weighing in at approximately 3086 grams on our scale, was even slightly heavier than its predecessor, the Move 1, which came in at around 3030 grams. This weight difference was likely due to the inclusion of a larger battery. Interestingly, it also made the Move 2 larger and heavier than the Sonos Era 100, released a few months prior, despite the Era 100 not being intended for portability.
Consequently, it became challenging to categorize the Move 2 as a genuinely portable speaker. Similar to its illustrious predecessor, the Sonos Move 2 was a speaker that you would move around your home. It was ideal for transitioning from the bedroom to the living room to set the evening ambiance, or from the living room to the bathroom for a musical accompaniment during showers. For fortunate homeowners with a garden, the Move 2 would make for an excellent companion on sunny spring afternoons. In essence, if you were in search of a speaker to slip into a bag for on-the-go use, it might be wiser to consider a less bulky alternative. Similarly, if you intended to immerse yourself in the Sonos ecosystem and equip multiple rooms in your residence, wired speakers would likely be a more suitable choice.
It is essential to note that the Move 2 boasts shock resistance and an IP56 certification. This makes it resilient enough to withstand a few raindrops, poolside splashes, and the heat of summer, further solidifying its role as a versatile companion for various indoor and outdoor settings.
In keeping with the tradition of Sonos products, the Sonos Move 2 is a highly connected device that is brimming with features as practical as they are innovative.
The Move 2 primarily functions as a wireless speaker, offering both Wi-Fi connectivity (compatible with the Sonos app, AirPlay, Spotify Connect, and more) and Bluetooth capabilities. While there is an option to plug in various devices, including a headphone jack adapter (available separately), into the USB-C port on the speaker’s back, this wired use is generally secondary, especially for those accustomed to the Sonos ecosystem and its wireless conveniences. Right from the moment you power on the Move 2 for the first time, you’ll be guided through an initial setup process using the Sonos app and, consequently, your Wi-Fi connection. This process is designed to be quick and straightforward, ensuring you’re ready to enjoy the Move 2’s features without any hassle.
Once connected, the app prompts you to calibrate the speaker before use. We strongly recommend doing this as it can significantly enhance your audio experience. The Move 2 employs “Automatic TruePlay,” a feature that may be slightly less effective than the “real TruePlay” (the one where you walk around the room with your iPhone as a microphone, typically reserved for non-portable products), but it still does an admirable job of correcting certain audio nuances. Since the Move 2 is a portable device, it even offers the option to activate a functionality that triggers automatic calibration each time you move it and the microphone is activated. This means you never have to worry about manual adjustments, which is a convenient feature.
The Sonos app itself is an ultra-comprehensive, fluid, and intuitive platform that further enhances the Move 2’s functionality. In addition to the automatic calibration, the app also offers manual calibration through a user-friendly equalizer, allowing you to fine-tune the audio to your preferences. Moreover, the app is brimming with features, making it a delight to explore. One noteworthy feature is the ability to integrate your favorite streaming service directly into the app. While native streaming service apps are often more familiar and user-friendly, the integration into the Sonos app ensures a seamless listening experience, allowing you to effortlessly control your music from a single platform.
Alexa and Sonos Voice Control
The Sonos Move 2, being a top-tier connected speaker, offers voice control through two prominent voice assistants: Alexa and Sonos Voice Control. However, there are a couple of notable omissions, which warrant mentioning. Notably, Google Assistant is conspicuously absent, leaving users in the Google ecosystem at a disadvantage and requiring them to juggle different voice assistants.
While the absence of Siri is somewhat expected, as Apple tends to keep Siri exclusive to its own products (though it is possible to control the Move 2 using Siri through Apple Home), the absence of Google Assistant is more conspicuous. Users of Google’s ecosystem might find themselves in a somewhat frustrating position, having to interact with multiple voice assistants to manage their devices.
Let’s delve into what each of these voice assistants brings to the table, starting with Sonos Voice Control (SVC). SVC is a relatively young AI developed by the French, and while it may not be as advanced as Alexa, it excels in understanding voice commands related to the world of audio in general and Sonos specifically. For instance, within the modular Sonos ecosystem, if you have two speakers, you can instruct Sonos Voice Control to enable multi-room playback (playing the same song in several rooms simultaneously) using a variety of phrases. Conversely, you can configure both speakers for stereo sound, enhancing the soundstage substantially.
Alexa, on the other hand, is a well-established and powerful voice assistant known for its versatility. From adjusting volume levels to providing weather updates, Alexa can handle a wide range of voice commands, making it a comprehensive voice control option.
Two essential points are worth highlighting:
Microphone Control: The Sonos Move 2 includes a physical button that allows you to manually enable or disable the microphone. This feature ensures user privacy and allows individuals concerned about potential surveillance to have complete control over their device’s listening capabilities.
Voice Detection and Responsiveness: Regardless of which voice assistant you choose, the Move 2’s microphones excel at accurately detecting voice commands. Even in environments with loud music or significant background noise, the Era 100’s microphones manage to pick up your voice. If you happen to be in a different room from the speaker, you might need to raise your voice slightly. However, overall, the quality of voice detection and the responsiveness of the voice assistants are impressive, if not downright astonishing.
If the design of the Sonos Move 2 is quite close to that of the Move 1, there has been a lot of progress in terms of sound quality. The speaker’s 3-speaker system changes everything, and it’s obvious. I have a Bose Portable Home Speaker at home, considered one of the best, if not the best, wireless speakers on the market. The Sonos Move 2 is clearly a step above.
Overall, the Move 2 delivers remarkably balanced, precise and powerful sound. For a portable product, it’s amazing. You may know that many people have criticized the Move 1 for being a bit too bassy. With its additional tweeter, the Move 2 has a much more balanced sound than its big sister. We are able to obtain both pretty, well-rounded bass, but also well-detailed highs and nicely restored mids. We also note a sound with very beautiful dynamics, which enhances the nuances brought to the mix by the artists you listen to.
An important point to address for a portable speaker is the homogeneity of the sound. The Bose Portable Home Speaker for example is a 360 degree speaker, so it can be placed in the middle of a table in the evening and everyone will enjoy the sound equally. The Move 2 is not a 360-degree speaker, but we noticed very little loss through the back of the product, which is a very good thing. Note that the product’s soundstage is much wider than that of the Move 1, the addition of an additional tweeter is clearly felt.
In this regard, we can quickly talk about the stereo effect of the Move 2. On certain specific songs, we really felt it, but it must be said: the latter is not breathtaking either. And to tell the truth, it’s normal, you can’t do miracles in a product of this format. If you can afford it, you will always have a much more pronounced stereo sound by purchasing a second Sonos speaker that you can pair with the first as you wish (either in multiroom or in stereo).
Last important point when talking about a portable speaker: power. And what power! The Sonos Move 2 spits distortion-free decibels at a truly remarkable level. You can use it outdoors to broadcast music for a small party without any problem.
Sonos Move 2: Conclusion
The Sonos Move 2 has a strong claim to being potentially the best portable speaker available in 2023.
What sets the Sonos Move 2 apart is its exceptional sound quality. It exhibits the hallmark precision in the midrange, impressive dynamics, and a soundstage that is significantly wider than its predecessor, the Move 1. The improvement in soundstage is nothing short of remarkable, expanding the immersive audio experience to new heights. It’s a testament to Sonos’ commitment to audio excellence.
However, there are some considerations to keep in mind. If you find yourself deeply entrenched in the Google ecosystem and you’re in search of a truly nomadic speaker to carry with you everywhere, the Sonos Move 2 might not be the ideal choice. It lacks Google Assistant integration, and its weight of approximately 3 kg may be a bit cumbersome for those seeking the utmost portability. In such cases, you may want to explore alternatives better suited to your specific needs.