Both the Sonos Port and the Sonos Connect are excellent and versatile new streaming devices. One is priced higher than the other, but both possess small profiles, although differently shaped. Are the inner components really worth the extra cost?
Our experts are here to answer your questions, save you money, and more by pitting the Sonos Port vs Connect against each other.
Sonos Port or Sonos Connect?
Features of Sonos Port and Connect
In this head to head combat between the Sonos Connect vs Sonos Port, we thoroughly analyzed the qualifications of both products and declared a winner at the end of every section.
Both might not be created entirely equally, but it’s a close race. They are meant to play different roles in your whole audio systems but both integrate non Sonos speakers and you get to play what you like that isn’t present on the app.
However, you won’t know the overall winner and our experts’ top recommendation until you get to the end, so let’s dive right in.
Size and Design
In terms of size, the Port possesses one of the smallest footprints our team has seen in streaming products. It only measures in at 1.61 x 5.43 x 5.43 and weighs in at 1.04 pounds.
In a battle where lighter weight and smaller size is an advantage, the Port is definitely our team’s choice for a smaller room. This design is also useful if you need to stack them. Many users need to save even more space, so stacking them on a bookshelf is a great way to do so.
While still small, the new Sonos Connect, has a larger profile than the Port, measuring in at 8.15 x 7.28 x 3.5 and weighs in at 5.06 pounds. It’s not bigger by much and is still considered small, but the Sonos Connect clearly takes up more space.
Sonos audio system devices are known for their sleek designs, so our team wasn’t surprised by the favorable appearances of both Sonos home audio speakers add-ons.
When you need to factor in the size of an amplifier, the smaller choice is usually a preferable option. The smaller size will give more room to an external amplifier.
They basically have the same functionality, with the Port having the same components, just in a smaller size. When you think of tiny parts squeezed in together, you might wonder about the overheating your whole home audio equipment may be subjected to.
Your whole home audio systems do require quite a bit of energy, especially if you are streaming music from a multi-room audio setup, but Sonos compensated for the small size by integrating a heat dispersing function.
The Sonos Port has a smooth all-black design that doesn’t feature anything on the surface but one single indicator light. The Sonos Connect on the other hand, has more to offer on the surface, which includes a small control panel and a stand design.
There don’t seem to be different color options, but our experts will say the white color of the Sonos Connect really grabs your attention, which could be a plus.
But since most home products are black, especially in a whole home theater, the Port as one of the speakers with an amplifier might be able to match your interiors more easily.
Then there is the Audio Trigger. The trigger output gives users more control over energy efficiency. You can adjust when the new device turns on or off. The Sonos Port has this feature, but the Sonos Connect does not.
This means that the amp will always need to be on when your Connect is integrated into a full home theater systems. When there is no amp, there is no enjoyable music and stereo sound.
It’s all about the processing power when it comes to the speed and load of your speakers. Let’s see if there is a difference between the processing capability of the Sonos Connect and Sonos Port.
Sonos themselves say the Sonos Port, which is the smaller of the two, has more processing power than the Sonos Connect. This basically means the Sonos Connect can help your whole home audio systems, whether you have Sonos speakers or not when it comes to streaming music, using Airplay, and more.
The processing power also has a hand in the longevity and lifespan of your new device. It can handle speakers of any power output and work harder than the Sonos Connect.
Signal to Noise Ratio
Other than the extra processing power Sonos gave to the smaller device, they also added a 10 dB sensitivity improvement to the Port, elevating its audio capabilities above the Connect. In other words, get ready for great sounding music you will like and echoing stereo sound.
Home System Integration
The integration of Sonos devices into whole home speakers isn’t a difficult one. Let’s look at the Sonos Connect first in more detail. So far, as the underdog of this competition, the Connect does redeem itself with analog audio connections and digital outputs.
Analog works well when you are using something like a turntable. This will give you the chance to use the audio system as an analog source and connect with other analog products or if you have a digital to analog converter, you can make use of the digital outputs.
The Connect also gives the option of a fixed or set output or a variable one. The variable output option allows for playing from multi-room setups more easily because you can designate the connection by zone.
With the Sonos Port, you can build the audio system via Wi-Fi connection to get AirPlay working, or use the line-in connection to hook up your Sonos system.
We touched upon the Audio Trigger as a component of the design section, but because it’s such a handy feature on your device, our experts feel it needs its own round.
The trigger is a set function in your Sonos Port that is not present in the Sonos Connect. This nifty feature allows you to choose when to have the new device on, independent of the amp power.
This is an energy efficient feature and also a cost-saving one. It can be a hassle to always have your receiver or amplifier turned on just to use the tiny device.
A more in-depth explanation goes like this: the amp, or amplifier, is often needed for a small streaming product like these two devices. A pre amp system might not be as formidable in terms of music loudness for your speakers.
The amp has a feature that will turn on when the trigger sensor detects the trigger signal. Because some amps didn’t have this before, and in order to ensure the smooth performance of your stereo system, many people left their amp on all the time. However, with the trigger sensor on the Port, the amp will only turn on when the Port is on.
Compatibility with Voice Assistants
This is another category in which the Sonos Connect outperforms the Sonos Port. We haven’t had many of these where the Connect emerges as the winner, but the voice assistant product support is a big one.
For the price, you want your equipment to have everything you need, and some would argue that a voice assistant or sometimes even two, is a basic function. The Sonos Connect has Alexa device support. All you need is an external Amazon Alexa component to have a virtual assistant ready at your fingertips.
However, the Sonos Port does not have Alexa device or Google Assistant integration, which is sure to knock off a couple of its winning points. With the help of a virtual assistant, streaming music, checking the news, setting alarms, and shifting through your playlist has become super easy.
Sonos Port and Connect: Extra Features
Aside from the audio trigger and voice assistant integration, there is another extra feature to look for – Apple Airplay. Only one product has the Airplay, and it is the Sonos Port. Our team sees this as a serious detriment to the value of the Connect.
Despite its pretty white color, the product rules out a huge chunk of the Sonos demographic without the ability to pair with an Apple iOS ecosystem . Without Airplay in the Connect, it severely limits the convenience of those with a product operating on iOS systems.
Sonos Port and Connect Price
The Sonos Port is the newer device and is the one most would like to add to their home speakers. However, a new product most often comes at a higher price.
Even with the higher cost, our experts still suggest going with newer options when shopping for audio equipment including speakers, because the older model usually gets phased out and discontinued.
When you purchase a component that is on the outs, the manufacturer might eventually lack the parts when the time comes to fix the unit or when an even newer model comes out, making yours even more obsolete.
Even though the Connect comes at a more affordable price, it would still be classified as expensive when you compare it to other options. The prices are close between the Connect and the Port, and that is why going for the newer albeit more expensive option would be even more justifiable.
There are many things you want to consider before taking the plunge, just know that our experts always suggest going for quality over price any day of the week.
Is Sonos port better than Connect?
Yes, Sonos Port is better than Connect. Not only is it the audio streaming unit with a smaller footprint, it also integrates well with your home speakers thanks to the audio trigger for the amp. The Port also has a lot more bonus functions, a better signal to noise ratio by 10 dB, and more processing power.
What is the difference between Sonos Connect and Sonos port?
The difference between the Sonos Connect and Sonos Port is the design, the integration and the special features. The Port has the edge in the home speakers integration part as well as the special features with the amp audio trigger, but it is lacking in music control with voice assistants that the Sonos Connect offers.
Does Sonos port replace connect?
Yes, Sonos Port will replace Connect. The two products are close in design, but people would want convenience and function first over a prettier design. Not only that, all the added functions in the Port will render the Connect an obsolete choice in the future.
Overall Winner: Sonos Port
In the battle of the tiny titans, or the Sonos Port vs Connect, our team had a great time reviewing the products and pitting them against each other. The clear winner throughout the battle has been the Sonos Port.
It wasn’t a close competition, and while the Port does lack an outfitted virtual assistant, it offers a lot more such as line in connections, a receiver or fifier audio trigger, superior music due to the signal to noise ratio, and a smaller profile to name a few.
It may not be the first choice if you are using a turntable, but it’s the best choice for convenience and functionality.