Sonos One SL ditches voice commands but keeps the killer sound

(Image credit: Future)

If you liked the sound of the Sonos One but couldn't stand the fact that it had a built-in microphone, we've got some good news: the new Sonos One SL has everything you liked about the original without the one privacy-invading thing you didn't. 

That mic is gone. Kaput. Removed.

Taking the vast majority of its design from the original Sonos One, Sonos says the SL (which we can only imagine stands for *Stops Listening*) is really an olive branch to people who really want the sound and feature set of the Sonos One without the possibility of an always-listening smart AI helper like Alexa or Google Assistant

New name, same sound

The new Sonos speaker made its debut at IFA 2019 alongside another new product called the Sonos Move, a portable speaker that's intended for outdoor use. The SL is still an indoor-only speaker like the original Sonos One, however, so it's best to leave any outdoor adventuring to the Sonos Move.

With multi-room and stereo pairing support, the Sonos move lets you playback music from more than 100 streaming services, including Spotify, as well as from locally-curated network storage libraries. 

Wi-Fi comes in a 802.11 b/g, 2.4 GHz flavor, with support for Apple AirPlay 2. An Ethernet port is also in the back if your Wi-Fi isn't up to scratch.

Two Class-D digital amplifiers are onboard, with one tweeter handling highs and a mid-woofer for lows and mids. EQ can be adjusted with dedicated bass and treble controls.

In terms of form factor, it has identical dimensions to the Sonos One, measuring up at 161.45 x 119.7 x 119.7 mm, with black or white color options set to be available.

In terms of release date, Sonos is targeting a September 14 street date (so not long to wait), and plans on releasing the SL at the same price as the Sonos One ($179, £179, 199 Euro).

IFA 2019 is Europe's biggest tech show. The TechRadar team is in Berlin to bring you all the breaking news and hands-on first impressions of new TVs, watches and other tech as they're announced.

Nick Pino

Nick Pino is Managing Editor, TV and AV for TechRadar's sister site, Tom's Guide. Previously, he was the Senior Editor of Home Entertainment at TechRadar, covering TVs, headphones, speakers, video games, VR and streaming devices. He's also written for GamesRadar+, Official Xbox Magazine, PC Gamer and other outlets over the last decade, and he has a degree in computer science he's not using if anyone wants it.