by Rob Chilton
  • 2 minute read
  • June 11, 2024
Sonos unveils their first ever headphones
Sonos Ace headphones

Sonos’ website is filed with soundbars, subwoofers and speakers and now, finally, visitors find a new section: headphones. Almost 20 years after launching in Santa Barbara, California, Sonos have made a pair of premium, over-ear, wireless headphones – Sonos Ace – that plunge the brand into a competitive and crowded sector of the tech world. Here are six things we like about the landmark new cans.

1) Cool Comfort
During the design process, Sonos engineers followed a simple mantra: comfort, comfort, comfort. The result are ear cushions filled with squishy memory foam that enable long periods of use without getting that ‘dead ear’ sensation. Sonos Ace have been tested by people wearing ear rings and spectacles and, although not made for jogging, the cans can easily withstand walking up and down stairs, bending over and everyday moving about.

White Sonos Ace headphones.
White Sonos Ace headphones. Image: Supplied

2)Hooray for Buttons
Anybody else frustrated with blindly stroking and swiping headphones to alter volume or skip tracks? Yeah, us too. Thankfully, Sonos Ace have reverted to a good old fashioned button on the right hand cup to control playback with a satisfying click, or a gentle slide up and down. Resembling a slider found on
mixing desks in recording studios, this Content Key is a joy to use.

3)Expert Advice
Fittingly for a company making a pair of headphones, Sonos devoted a lot of research time to listening. Engineers consulted award-winning sound engineers, music producers and film music experts to ensure every detail was covered. People such as Noah Goldstein, who won a Grammy for his work on Kanye West’s My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy, mastering engineer Emily Lazar (Coldplay, Haim, Jacob Collier), renowned mixing engineer Manny Marroquin (Rihanna, Katy Perry, Ed Sheeran, Taylor Swift, Justin Bieber, Bruno Mars and John Legend), and Giles Martin, the British music producer and songwriter who’s the son of legendary Beatles producer George Martin.

Sonos Ace headphones.
Sonos Ace headphones. Image: Supplied

4)Slim Cups Often, with over-ear headphones, the cups stick out, making the wearer feel self conscious. Sonos took a look at products from rival audio brands and thought, ‘We can do better than that.’ The beautifully domed cups on Sonos Ace are slim and streamline and also hide the hinge so you’ll never trap your hair. One more thing, the interior of the right and left cup are coloured differently to subtly signal which way to put the headphones on – smart idea.

5)Quiet Luxury
At 320g, Sonos Ace are not the lightest headphones on the market but the weight is evenly distributed to provide a nice balance when wearing them. Coming in two colours – black or soft white – the matte headphones are made from vegan leather and have an anti-fingerprint coating. For the first time, Sonos have used metal in a product and the steel in Ace is inspired by luxury furniture design.

Black Sonos Ace headphones
Black Sonos Ace headphones. Image: Supplied

6)Sharp Sound
Okay, here comes the tech. Sonos Ace produce deep, immersive sound and crisp speech on audiobooks and podcasts thanks to the custom-designed 40mm dynamic drivers in each cup. Eight beamforming microphones enable Ace to provide excellent noise control and voice targeting. At 30 hours, the battery has impressive stamina, and just three minutes of charging gives three hours of playback time.

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