Sonos Roam SL drops the mic with a $159 price tag and all the portability

Image: Sonos

Sonos today unveiled the Roam SL, the successor to the original

Traveling portable speaker

. It’s Sonos’ cheapest offering, at $159 ($20 less than the Roam), but it’s still equipped with most of the original’s audio hardware and sound quality. The difference is the omission of the built-in microphones, typically used for voice assistant commands and Sonos’ Trueplay – a feature that uses the microphone to tune and fine-tune speaker sound by listening to the ambience.

More: Best Bluetooth speakers: Sonos Roam stands its ground

If you can overlook the lack of a mic, then the Roam SL is essentially the same speaker as its predecessor, which is a good thing. The portable speaker can be paired via Bluetooth or WiFi for listening at home or on the go, and comes in the familiar triangular shape for a form factor that’s easy to carry or place on any surface. Roam SL also has an IP67 rating for dust and waterproofing up to one meter deep for half an hour. The certification is more than enough if you plan to use the speaker at the beach, by the pool, or in the rain and shower.

More importantly, Sonos says that like the original Roam, which we recommend as the best Bluetooth speaker right now, the Roam SL produces the same rich, detailed sound profile found in premium speakers. range and larger, and a battery life of 10 hours. . If you want to charge the Roam SL wirelessly instead of USB-C, the

Sonos Roam wireless charger

can be purchased separately for $49.

The Roam SL goes on sale from March 15 for $159 in Shadow Black and Lunar White, with pre-orders going live today on the

Sono website.

For those looking for an ultraportable speaker with Sonos’ signature sound at a lower cost, the Roam SL is worth considering. But if you need the added benefits of microphones, then the original,

$179 Sonos

is a useful alternative.

Eleanor C. William