If you can afford the price increase, the Sonos Move 2 offers all the good bits of the first one and improvements across the board in the places that matter making it a tempting offer for those yet to explore the Sonos ecosytem. Just keep in mind you'll need a strong arm to lug it around with you and if you don't do much travelling, the Era 300 is the same price and offers better audio.
The Sonos Move 2 is the US audio manufacturer’s fourth portable speaker, following the Roam SL from 2022, the original Roam from 2021, and the first Move from 2019. But while Sonos might call the Move 2 a ‘portable’ speaker, we couldn’t help but question that.
Not because of shoddy battery life or a reliance on internet connectivity. The latter was never a problem for the original Move, being the first Sonos speaker to support music playback via Bluetooth. That’s been improved with the Move 2 and as for battery life, Sonos has more than doubled it.
What Sonos hasn’t changed from the original Move is its bulky design and considerable heft. It still isn’t going to fit in your pocket or most backpacks. Even if you bought the specially-made carry pouch (sold separately), we wouldn’t recommend taking it on a hike or any walk further than to your yard unless there’s also a 15kg tub of whey protein living in your cupboard.
Well, you’re probably thinking, is the Move 2 even worth buying? Surprisingly, yes.
Wearing its Sunday best
Sonos definitely makes you feel like you’re getting your money’s worth. The unboxing experience doesn’t disappoint, nor does the Move 2’s build quality. Sonos has taken the ‘if it ain’t broke’ approach to the Move 2’s design. At 241 x 160 x 127 mm, there’s little to tell the Move 2 apart from the Move – other than the ‘2’ on the box, the new olive green colourway, and the redesigned touch controls on top.
We can’t say we’re too upset about that. The original Move looked pretty smart and you get more of the same with the Move 2. If we had to look for something to complain about, the rubberised base can feel a little sticky and tends to hold on to dust or pet hair. But that’s easily remedied with a moist cloth or a quick rinse under the tap because the Move 2 carries an IP56 rating. No need to worry about your outdoor party being rained out, the Move 2 should survive. Your guests might feel less enamoured.
Back to those dimensions, a quick glance at a measuring tape will tell you the Move 2 fares on the larger side of portable speakers. Sonos’ other portable speaker, the Roam, will fit between your towels in your beach bag but the Move 2 is much bigger and weighs 3kg. That could make things difficult.
To Sonos’ credit, the Move 2 weighs the same as the OG Move yet has more than double the battery life. It’ll manage 24 hours of continuous playback between charges. That’s no small feat. When you do need a charge, simply plonk the Move 2 down on the included wireless charging base. We appreciated the two-metre cable and how easy the process is.
Like the Era 300, the Move 2 also features a rear USB-C port but you’ll need to buy Sonos’ proprietary Line-In adapter to go any further. Unlike the Era 300, you can still get some use out of the port without the adapter. It allows for reverse charging compatible devices, like smartphones. You’ll only get 7.5W out of it but it’s better than a dead phone.
Good sound doesn’t have to stay at home
Along with the battery life, audio performance has also improved. The Move 2 can now manage stereo sound thanks to an extra tweeter. There are two in total, tuned as dedicated left and right channels for a bit of stereo separation, with a mid-woofer for, well… mid- to lower-end frequencies. Having said that, you still can’t expect the same level of stereo separation you’d get from separate left and right units, but it’s definitely better than the first Move’s mono output.
The Move 2 doesn’t only trump the Move in stereo separation, it also provides a more refined sound. You still get the signature Sonos sound with punchy presence in the lower-mid and mid-range frequencies and thanks to that second tweeter, vocals benefit from a bit of extra character. Most folks will be happy with what they paid for.
Being a Sonos product, if you want to make changes to the Move 2’s sound you can through the Sonos app and its relatively limited EQ. It only allows for small tweaks to ‘Treble’ and ‘Bass’, meaning you won’t stray too far from the original Sonos sound.
When you and your Move 2 venture outside, the app’s ‘loudness’ toggle will provide a little extra oompf at the expense of cohesion, although we doubt too many partygoers will notice or care. They’ll be too busy marvelling at how it isn’t bigger for the sound it’s producing.
The master of multiroom audio
That’s not all the Sonos app is good for. If you’ve ever had the pleasure of using it, you’ll know what we mean. It’s one of the most streamlined and painless setup processes we’ve experienced, whether you’re working with a single device or adding a new one to your existing setup.
It offers a decent range of radio stations and other music sources to stream freely and an easy way to sign into the services you already use – Spotify, Apple Music, etc. If you’re a Spotify podcast listener, it might take a little longer to figure out you can only start them from the Spotify app once you’ve opened the Sonos app but that’s more than likely Spotify’s fault.
Like other voice-enabled Sonos devices, hands-free voice control is possible via Sonos’ own voice assistant or Amazon’s Alexa. Still no Google Assistant, however. And there’s always the trusty Bluetooth connection to fall back on if you’re out of Wi-Fi range. Unfortunately, Sonos has not yet deemed it necessary to include support for hi-res audio codecs like LDAC or aptX HD.
You’ll also need the app if you want to make use of Sonos’ TruPlay feature which can be started manually or, if the built-in microphones are left enabled, triggered automatically every time you move the Move 2 around. It will measure and optimise the speaker’s sound output based on its new environment.
Sonos Move 2 verdict
Sonos has put the Move 2 in an interesting position. The original Move was a fairly capable speaker when it launched and the company has done a great job improving things across the board with the Move 2. But are those improvements worth the extra cash?
If you bought the OG Move and you’re still happy with it, save your money. The added stereo sound and line-in capabilities aren’t really worth an upgrade on their own but if you constantly find your Move running out of battery, the Move 2 might be worth a second look.
It could also be a good place to start your Sonos journey if you’re still new to the brand and want to get the most out of your purchase. What better way to do that than to take it with you wherever you go? Sure it can’t match the audio quality and spatial audio smarts of the Era 300, but that one’s a lot more hassle to cart around. If you’ve already grown some roots or don’t feel the need to score every moment of your life, you’ll probably be better off with the Era 300.