Sony has shown two new speakers with Sony’s own 360 Reality Audio as part of the CES. The SRS-RA5000 and RA3000 are designed to send sound in all directions and therefore do not have to be placed in a corner of a room, facing inwards.
Both models have two audio channels for stereo sound, says Sony. The RA5000 has three speakers that face up to project the sound in that direction, while three other speakers take care of the horizontal projection. Finally, there is also a subwoofer. The RA3000 does it with a full range speaker and two passive radiators that provide the bass. An ‘omnidirectional distributor’ must ensure that that single full range speaker projects in all directions.
The speakers can calibrate themselves to produce the best possible sound throughout the room where they are placed. It is striking that with the more expensive RA5000 this is a process that has to be used manually, but the cheaper RA3000 does this automatically. Both models do use volume normalization. It is also striking that only the RA3000 is well suited for a bathroom, for example, because it is moisture resistant.
Both models also support Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant, but do not have them onboard themselves; they simply connect to devices, such as smartphones, that they do have on board. In addition, there is support for multi-room playback, Chromecast Audio and Spotify Connect. Bluetooth and WiFi are also options and the RA5000 has nfc for pairing .
The speakers have Sony’s so-called 360 Reality Audio technology on board, with which audio sources are distributed over a spherical space, provided the service and the specific music track support this. That works with Deezer, nugs.net and Tidal, according to another page.
Both models will have a black version with copper-colored accents and the RA3000 will also have a light gray variant with silver-colored accents. According to the announcement, the SRS-RA3000 will cost around 300 euros and the SRS-RA5000 around 550 euros. The speakers should be available from next month.