Sonos Sub Mini subwoofer

Sonos Sub Mini subwoofer: lounge room grunt (review)


Beefing up your lounge room audio, without blowing out your budget or your windows, the Sonos Sub Mini subwoofer adds low-end grunt to your favourite music and movies.

Sonos made its name as the gold standard in wireless multi-room audio, but these days it’s paying more attention to the lounge room with its range of soundbars designed to improve on the sound from your television’s built-in speakers.

Of course, great lounge room audio needs decent low-end grunt when it comes to booming explosions and thumping soundtracks, so 10 years ago Sonos unveiled the hefty $999 Sonos SUB. It is not designed to work with a traditional home theatre surround sound system. Instead, it works in conjunction with a Sonos speaker, or perhaps two linked as a stereo pair. 

The original Sonos SUB was an engineering marvel, but it’s hefty, expensive and total overkill for your typical lounge room. The new Sonos Sub Mini aims to rectify that – it still packs a reasonable punch, but it’s far more practical for your average home.

Review: Sonos Sub Mini

Australian website here
Price $699 RRP
Warranty 1 year
OtherYou can read other GadgetGuy Sonos news and reviews here

First impressions

Standing 30 centimetre high, the Sonos Sub Mini is a little larger than your typical subwoofer, but not so much that you can’t tuck it out of the way. The cylindrical design is a bit more elegant than your standard boxy subwoofer but, remember, its low-frequency sound is much less directional than your typical speaker, so it doesn’t need to be in view when you’re sitting on the couch.

If you already own Sonos speakers and have set up the Sonos app, it’s simply to add the Sub Mini to your existing set-up. Power up the Sub Mini and the app will detect it automatically, letting you tap your phone on the speaker to configure it via NFC. The speaker can connect to your existing system via Ethernet or Wi-Fi.

Remember, the Sub Mini can’t work as a standalone speaker. Once it’s connected to your system, you need to choose which existing speaker (or stereo pair) to link it to.

Sonos recommends using the Sub Mini with its Ray and Beam soundbars – we tested it with a Beam (Gen 2) – or else a Sonos One or One SL (a single speaker or stereo pair). That said, the Sub Mini actually works with most Sonos speakers which are compatible with the modem Sonos app (not the old Sonos S1 app, which is still around to support very old Sonos gear).

Sonos Sub Mini specs

Woofers Dual 6-inch (inwards-facing for a force-cancelling effect)
Amplifiers Class-D 
Frequency response As low as 25 Hz
Connectivity Ethernet, Wi-Fi
Dimensions 230 mm diameter, height 305 mm
Weight 6.3 kg
Colours  Black or white


Once you’ve linked the Sonos Sub Mini to another Sonos speaker or speaker pair in your home, it’s pretty much set-and-forget. It doesn’t show up as an individual speaker and streaming point, instead it’s controlled automatically when you adjust the connected speaker/s.

If you’ve got an iOS device, you can use the Sonos Truplay feature to automatically calibrate the speaker group to suit the acoustics of the room, which includes adjusting the sub.

Beyond this, you can adjust the EQ of the speaker group to suit your taste. You can’t adjust the cut-over point where frequencies are handed to the Sub Mini, but you can adjust its power level – between -15 and +15 (set at 0 by default) – and its phase control. 

Because the Sonos speakers are designed to work so well in unison, it’s unlikely you’ll need to adjust the Sub Mini’s power unless you really want to feel those explosions and thumping bass lines.

You can also completely disable the sub in the Sonos app, but the difference is more subtle than you expect because the other speakers automatically adjust to compensate (one strength of the Sonos system). If you want to keep down the noise, perhaps not to wake the household, it makes more sense to make use of night mode and speech enhancer – which you can enable via the app when playing sound from your television.


The Sonos Sub Mini isn’t about shaking the windows, it’s about bringing out the richness of your music and movie soundtracks. It’s an impressive piece of engineering with two woofers designed to cancel out each other’s vibrations, meaning you can crank the system up and the subwoofer won’t distort or vibrate.

At first, enabling the Sub Mini doesn’t make a striking difference to the sound because the Sonos Beam already delivers reasonably good bass for its size. But listen closely and you can not only hear but also feel the difference, particularly as you turn up the volume.

The clarity of the Sonos SUB helps a rich low-end shine through without being overpowering or sacrificing overall sound quality. It delivers fuller, richer sound with more impact when watching a movie, ensuring you feel those explosions in a way the Beam on its own doesn’t deliver. Likewise with music, especially when listening to something with a fat bass line like Macy Gray.

Realistically, you need to be cranking up the sound to really appreciate the difference the subwoofer makes. When you might pair it with a Sonos soundbar in the lounge room, you probably wouldn’t bother in the bedroom.

GadgetGuy’s take

The Sonos Sub Mini is a great addition to the Sonos line-up, especially if you’ve previously eyed off the full-sized SUB. But it’s not for everyone.

The question is not whether the Sub Mini is a good speaker, but whether it’s the right speaker for you. If you’ve already invested in a Beam or Ray for a small to medium-sized room,, and you feel it’s not quite meeting your needs on the low end, then it makes sense. You don’t need that Sonos full-sized $999 SUB unless you’re looking to rock a very large space.

Alternatively, if you’re starting from scratch building a home theatre system, then perhaps the $1300 price tag for a Beam and Sub Mini would be better put towards a true surround sound system, including a subwoofer. Unless of course you’re confident that you’d also use the Sonos gear in your lounge room for music – where Sonos’ great streaming and multi-room features deliver a lot of value.

Would I buy it?

Maybe, if I was sure that I would use it for both movies and music.

Sonos Sub Mini subwoofer: lounge room grunt (review)
Beefing up the low-end, the Sonos Sub Mini makes a great addition to some Sonos-centric lounge rooms.
Value for money
Ease of use
Clean, distortion-free sound
Supports both movies and music
Elegant design
A little expensive
Economics might not stack up against 5.1-channel home theatre system