Sonos deal of the day: save up to £150 on Sonos One and Playbase for surround sound

All you need to know about building a cheap Sonos home cinema surround system, just in time for Christmas

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Most of its other Sonos deals may have now concluded but Amazon still has up to £150 off the price of a Playbase – but only £100 off if you want the black one. 

• Sonos Playbase was £699 now £549 (white) or £599 (black) | Save £150

Another deal that is still ongoing is on The T3 Award-winning Sonos One speaker with Alexa. This can still be had for £20 off if you buy one, or a total of £50 off, if you buy a brace for use as a stereo pair, multi-room or as part of a 5.1 system. 

• 2 Sonos One speakers £398 £348 at Amazon UK, or direct from Sonos

That means you could currently save up to £200 on a Sonos surround system, based on conjoining a Playbase and two Sonos Ones (see below).

For a while there, Amazon was doing last-minute Christmas deals on the Beam, Sub, Play 5 and Playbar too, but you've missed the boat on those now. Dang.

However Sonos is also doing a deal on its Connect Amp – a 55 Watts per channel, Class D hi-fi amp that can turn your record player into a multi-room device, and give a new lease of life to your old hi-fi speakers…

• Sonos Connect Amp £499 £399 direct from Sonos

This is actually a great-sounding device; we recommend it for old-school heads.

What is the Playbase?

We suspect the Playbase might be the least popular of the Sonos line-up because punters are much more keen on soundbars than soundbases. However, it's actually one of our favourite Sonos products. 

Once correctly placed on a sturdy TV unit or shelf, it delivers very powerful audio with blockbuster cinema soundtracks, but also a very musical performance with, er, music. It's a fully-functioning multi-room Sonos speaker as well as doing home cinema duties.

Sonos for home cinema

As noted, Amazon has trimmed £150 off the cost of Sonos' home cinema big hitter, the Playbase. This doesn't have Alexa built in, although as with practically all Sonos speakers, if you buy any Echo device (the always-affordable Dot, or the currently heavily discounted Echo (2nd generation) for instance).

Sonos has delved heavily into the world of home cinema in recent years, and you can combine various of its speakers to make surround systems. 

As well as the Playbase, Sonos makes the Playbar which, as you may have guessed, is a soundbar and the Sub, which is powerful subwoofer, for those who are totally addicted to bass (we mean the low notes, not the fish).

You can wirelessly combine a Playbase or Playbar with a pair of Sonos One of Play 5 speakers, with the additional speakers doing duty as rear surround speakers. 

Any of these combinations muster up a very convincing degree of bottom end but if you want real mega bass, the Sub can supply it.

Sonos only supports Dolby Digital 5.1 – not Atmos or DTS – but it does a very good job with compatible soundtracks. Dolby Digital is still the standard for most broadcast and streamed TV in the UK, although Atmos is creeping on to some platforms and DTS remains popular on Blu-rays. 

If a different surround codec is used, or the broadcast is in stereo only, the Sonos system will apply a fairly decent simulated surround effect, but it definitely sounds best with Dolby Digital material. The other thing to note here is that if you use an external box to watch movies and shows, your TV will need to support Dolby Digital passthrough if you want to plug your Sonos in to your telly via optical digital or HDMI. 

There's no way we can give a comprehensive guide to which TVs do or do not support passthrough but on the whole, older TVs and cheaper TVs do not, while newer, more premium TVs do. Get your manual out, or search online.