best remotes for sonos

5 Best Remotes for Sonos Speakers in 2020 [Universal & Wall]

In Recommendations by Tim BrennanLeave a Comment

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Synopsis: In this article, I’ll break down the five best remotes for Sonos speakers you can get this year.

I’ll review three outstanding universal remote controls and a couple of cool wall-mountable keypads if you want to get extra fancy.

Here are my picks for the top five best remotes for Sonos speakers: 

Love You Some Sonos?

Got Sonos? If you arrived here, chances are you already own one or more Sonos speakers.

And let me guess, you love them, right?

Generally speaking, Sonos speaker owners (me included) usually do.

The awesome sound with crisp highs and deep bass—typically emulating from a small package—can make even the most discerning audiophile giddy.

But how do you take your Sonos speakers to the next level? You pair them with an exceptional universal remote of course!

In this post, I’ll show you the five best remotes for your Sonos speakers. And I’ll throw in a solid budget option if you aren’t ready to go all in just yet.

So grab a cup of Joe, crank up some Miles Davis, and read on! Let’s get you a killer remote.


Best Remotes for Sonos: Quick Comparison

The following table compares pricing and basic of the five best remotes for Sonos, organized by type (universal remote vs wall mount):

Rank
1
2
3
4
5
Image
Logitech Harmony Elite Remote Control, Hub and App
Logitech Harmony Ultimate All in One Remote with Customizable Touch Screen and Closed Cabinet RF Control - Black
Logitech Harmony Companion All in One Remote Control for Smart Home and Entertainment Devices, Hub & App, Works With Alexa – Black
LUTRON Caseta Wireless Smart Bridge + Audio Pico Remote, Sonos Endorsed Integration, White
iPort Xpress Audio Keypad for SONOS
Product Name
Logitech Harmony Elite Remote Control, Hub and App
Logitech Harmony Ultimate All in One Remote with Customizable Touch Screen and Closed Cabinet RF Control - Black
Logitech Harmony Companion All in One Remote Control for Smart Home and Entertainment Devices, Hub & App, Works With Alexa – Black
LUTRON Caseta Wireless Smart Bridge + Audio Pico Remote, Sonos Endorsed Integration, White
iPort Xpress Audio Keypad for SONOS
Type
Universal Remote
Universal Remote
Universal Remote
Wall Mount
Wall Mount
Key Features
Color LCD Screen, Mobile App, Alexa and Google Assistant, Activities like Listen to Music
Color LCD Screen, Mobile App, Alexa and Google Assistant, Activities like Listen to Music
Hard button remote, Mobile App, Alexa and Google Assistant, Activities like Listen to Music
Wall Mount, Wireless, Simple Keypad Buttons
Wall Mount or Magnetic, Wireless, Simple Keypad Buttons, Favorites
Price
$269.99
$139.99
$99.99
$119.90
Price not available
Prime Eligible
-
-
Rank
1
Image
Logitech Harmony Elite Remote Control, Hub and App
Product Name
Logitech Harmony Elite Remote Control, Hub and App
Type
Universal Remote
Key Features
Color LCD Screen, Mobile App, Alexa and Google Assistant, Activities like Listen to Music
Price
$269.99
Prime Eligible
Rank
2
Image
Logitech Harmony Ultimate All in One Remote with Customizable Touch Screen and Closed Cabinet RF Control - Black
Product Name
Logitech Harmony Ultimate All in One Remote with Customizable Touch Screen and Closed Cabinet RF Control - Black
Type
Universal Remote
Key Features
Color LCD Screen, Mobile App, Alexa and Google Assistant, Activities like Listen to Music
Price
$139.99
Prime Eligible
-
Rank
3
Image
Logitech Harmony Companion All in One Remote Control for Smart Home and Entertainment Devices, Hub & App, Works With Alexa – Black
Product Name
Logitech Harmony Companion All in One Remote Control for Smart Home and Entertainment Devices, Hub & App, Works With Alexa – Black
Type
Universal Remote
Key Features
Hard button remote, Mobile App, Alexa and Google Assistant, Activities like Listen to Music
Price
$99.99
Prime Eligible
Rank
4
Image
LUTRON Caseta Wireless Smart Bridge + Audio Pico Remote, Sonos Endorsed Integration, White
Product Name
LUTRON Caseta Wireless Smart Bridge + Audio Pico Remote, Sonos Endorsed Integration, White
Type
Wall Mount
Key Features
Wall Mount, Wireless, Simple Keypad Buttons
Price
$119.90
Prime Eligible
Rank
5
Image
iPort Xpress Audio Keypad for SONOS
Product Name
iPort Xpress Audio Keypad for SONOS
Type
Wall Mount
Key Features
Wall Mount or Magnetic, Wireless, Simple Keypad Buttons, Favorites
Price
Price not available
Prime Eligible
-

Last update on 2020-10-19 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Note: Prices are pulled in from the Amazon API and are current as of the date and time at the bottom of this table. Click Buy Now to see the latest price, see more details, or read the latest customer reviews on Amazon.


#1 – Premium Pick: Logitech Harmony Elite

Best Remotes for SonosAh, the Harmony Elite. To quote a recent review I wrote on the Elite, there are 10 reasons that this mature, battle-tested remote just rocks.  From its cool color LCD touchscreen to haptic feedback to the ability to integrate with Alexa and Google Assistant for voice control, this is really the best remote you can buy today. Best of all? In addition to your Sonos speakers, you can also control your entire home entertainment setup and smart home stuff too. What’s more, Harmony’s support for “Activities” lets you integrate Sonos with other speakers such as your soundbar, home theater, and any other Bluetooth speakers you might own.

Video Review

Undecided with Matt Ferrell has one of the better video reviews out there on the Harmony Elite.

Pros

  • Consolidate up to 15 remotes
  • Control smart devices, home theater, as well as Sonos speakers
  • Activities let you control multiple Sonos speakers and other speakers like Bluetooth, soundbars, Echo/Google Home and more
  • Companion app lets the whole family enjoy a customized experience
  • Setup auto-detects most Sonos speakers

Cons

  • It’s pricey.
  • Setting up all your devices takes a bit of time but it’s well worth it.

Where To Get It

Sale
Logitech Harmony Elite Remote Control, Hub and App
  • The most powerful and intuitive Harmony remote works with Alexa for voice control. All-in-one control of up to 15 home entertainment and connected home devices
  • Full color touchscreen: Simply swipe and tap to control channels, movies, volume, 50 favorite channels and smart home devices like Philips Hue lights
  • One-touch Activities: Touch an Activity like “Watch a Movie” to automatically power on and switch devices to the right settings; Compatible with Amazon’s Alexa for easy voice integration and activation
  • Harmony app: Turns iOS or Android smartphones or tablets into personal universal remote controls for the whole house
  • Closed cabinet control: Included Harmony Hub lets you control devices in closed cabinets, or even when away from home

Last update on 2020-10-19 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API


#2 – Coolest Looking: Harmony Ultimate

best remotes for sonosNext on my list of the best remotes for Sonos is the Logitech Harmony Ultimate. I love the look of the Harmony Ultimate Home universal remote. Not to be “shallow,” but looks-wise I think this is even cooler than the Elite (by a little).  It is also one of the few Harmony remotes that has the color LCD screen. Like the Elite, you can configure the Ultimate One to fire up your Sonos speakers along with other devices.

You could even add smart lights into the mix so that they dim and/or change colors when the music starts to play. Make sure you get the Ultimate model that ships with the Hub though and not the “Ultimate One.” Home will let you control Sonos as it includes a Hub needed to communicate via Bluetooth with Sonos speakers.  Ultimate One does not include the Hub and will not control Sonos (it is limited to RF control unless you pair it with a Hub sold separately).

Note that Harmony Express and IR remotes are only able to control Sonos Beam, PLAYBAR, and PLAYBASE.

Video Review

CNET has a nice review of the Ultimate out on YouTube. The video is a bit dated at this point, but the product is the same (includes Hub).

Pros

  • Looks cool.
  • Customizable LCD touchscreen with activities like Listen to Music or Dinner Party.
  • Controls smart devices, Sonos, home entertainment, and more.
  • Works with Alexa and Google.

Cons

  • Discontinued by Logitech although support is still available
  • No haptic feedback like teh Elite
  • Some customers who own both remotes like Elite button placements better

Where To Get It

Logitech Harmony Ultimate All in One Remote with Customizable Touch Screen and Closed Cabinet RF Control - Black
  • Works with Alexa for voice control (Alexa device sold separately)
  • Controls your entire home entertainment system: Even controls game consoles and devices hidden behind cabinet doors and walls
  • Powerful remote control customization: Includes the ability to create one-touch activity sequences, adjust and remap buttons, set device delays and timing, plus more
  • Intuitive color touch screen: Swipe and tap to access and switch between entertainment activities with shortcuts for your most frequently used commands.Ultimate convenience features: Vibration feedback touch screen, up to 50 favorite channel icons, back-lit buttons and recharging station. Bluetooth Feature : Compatibility with Sony PS3, Compatibility with Nintendo Wii / U
  • OS support(at least):Windows XP, Windows Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8, Mac OS 10.5+

Last update on 2020-10-19 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API


#3 – Best Value: Harmony Companion

Another one of the best remotes for Sonos is the Logitech Harmony Companion.  While there is no LCD touchscreen on this remote, the Companion is a fan favorite of industry reviewers and experts and is often a top pick. This is because it provides great value in that it gives you most of the features of Elite and Ultimate at a lower price for up to eight devices.

You get Alexa and Google for voice control, it ships with the Hub, and you also control Sonos and other devices using the Harmony app via your iOS or Android smartphone (Elite and Ultimate support this too). While this feels more like a traditional remote, it is a bit larger and bulkier than the Elite and Ultimate in the hand, IMHO. However, if you want to control Sonos with a traditional remote and are on a limited budget, Companion is worth a look. Text

Video Review

CNET also does a good job with this review of the Harmony Companion, saying it is the “last remote you will ever need.” (I feel that way about the Elite, but hey, that’s just me 😉.)

Pros

  • Consolidate up to eight remotes.
  • Most features of Elite and Ultimate for less money.
  • Companion app.
  • Supports activities like listen to music.
  • Feels like a traditional remote.
  • Alexa and Google for voice control.

Cons

  • No cool LCD screen.
  • Buttons are not backlit.
  • No haptic feedback which you get on the Elite.

Where To Get It

Sale
Logitech Harmony Companion All in One Remote Control for Smart Home and Entertainment Devices, Hub & App, Works With Alexa – Black
  • Works with Alexa for voice control (Alexa device sold separately)
  • Performs activities like Lower the blinds, dim the lights, fire-up the TV for movie night—all with a tap of the finger
  • Use your Smartphone (with available app) or included Harmony Remote for one-touch control of your entertainment system and home automation devices such as Philips Hue lights or Nest Learning Thermostat
  • Companion remote includes full featured home entertainment controls including dedicated home automation controls
  • Included Harmony Hub lets you control devices hidden behind cabinet doors or walls, including game consoles such as PS3, Wii, and Xbox 360

Last update on 2020-10-19 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API


#4 – Best Wall Mount Keypad: Lutron Caseta (with Smart Bridge)

best remotes for sonos If you are interested in controlling Lutron Caseta via wall switch in your home or apartment, the Lutron Caseta is the way to go. This is a very popular option and it will let you adjust and control music from anywhere in your abode that you install it. It fully integrates with Sonos and customers report ease of setup with very few problems.

An empty light switch is not required. You just mount into onto any wall surface with the included bracket. Probably the coolest thing about this option is that you get a whopping ten years of battery life (CR2032 battery). The simple three-button remote includes volume control as well as play/pause buttons, a skip to next track button, and a cycle favorites button. Pretty cool.

You will need a bridge (sold separately or as part of a bundle) to get this to work with Sonos. Once you have the bridge setup you can buy additional remotes for lights etc, and it integrates with Alexa, Apple HomeKit, and the Google Assistant to do things like dimming or switching the lights on/off through voice control. One bridge supports up to 75 Caseta devices so you can personalize your home and expand at your pace.Video Review

Pros

  • Mounts to any wall surface .
  • Lets you control music via wall keypad from anywhere in your home.
  • Compatible with Alexa and Google for voice control.
  • 10 years of battery life without needinga charge (wow).
  • Very Jetsons.
  • Simple and elegant controls.

Cons

  • Not a traditional remote.
  • Requires a bridge.
  • Mounting takes a bit of DIY work as there is no magnetic option.

Video Review

TJ Reishus has a wonderful demo of how to set up Lutron Smart Bridge with the Sonos app.  He moves fast, but this is exactly how you do it. I agree! Absolutely, genius!

Where To Get It

LUTRON Caseta Wireless Smart Bridge + Audio Pico Remote, Sonos Endorsed Integration, White
  • Adjust and control music from anywhere in your home (bundle includes required Caseta Smart Bridge)
  • Sonos wireless speaker/s required
  • Included remote control features buttons for play/pause, skip track, "cycle favorites", as well as raise/lower volume
  • Included Smart Bridge also works with Amazon Alexa, Apple HomeKit, Nest and select Honeywell thermostats, Serena shades and more via the FREE Lutron
  • Mount remote to Lutron Pico tabletop pedestal (l-ped1) or any wall surface with the Caseta Pico wall plate bracket (pico-wbx-adapt)

Last update on 2020-10-19 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API


# 5- Best Magnetic Keypad: iPort Xpress

best remotes for sonosThe iPort Xpress keypad is another excellent option that will let you remote control either a single Sonos speaker or an entire music group. It is compatible with all Sonos speakers and components and it the keypad that Sonos recommends for the best experience. The battery doesn’t last as long as the Lutron battery but it will still give you an impressive 6 months of use without a charge. You will need to have an iOS 10 or later device to set this up and use it, as Android devices are not supported yet.  Bummer. Controls are similar to Lutron Caseta with Play/Pause, volume up and down, as well as the ability to auto-play your favorites at the push of the button. Can you guess which button that is?  Yup, it’s the one with the Star on it. Kinda neat.

The xPRESS Audio Keypad for Sonos isn’t a traditional remote, but instead it can be attached to your wall for ultimate convenience. The keypad allows you to control your Sonos with the touch of a button. Another great feature of this remote is that is magnetic, so you can mount it wirelessly anywhere that has a magnetic surface and move it around to your heart’s content.

Pros

  • Magnetic so super easy to install.
  • Includes non-magnetic mouting option.
  • Elegant and simple controls.
  • Button for favorites lets you autoplay your favorite james from Sonos app.

Cons

  • Battery limited to six months.
  • Requires i0S for setup – Android is not supported yet.
  • Front legs have wheels but the back don’t which can make it a little tricky to maneuver.

Video Review

Momentum Tech Tips demo-ed the xPRESS audio keypad at a recent trade show. For a closer look at the product check out the Amazon product page. See link below.

B073V5ZMQN

Where To Get It

iPort Xpress Audio Keypad for SONOS
  • Control your Sonos music Instantly with the push of a button
  • Magnetically mount anywhere, easy to grab and go
  • Set up in minutes using the iPort app for Apple IOS devices only
  • Battery powered; recharge every 4-6 months with normal use
  • Access all of your Sonos favorites

Last update on 2020-10-19 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API


Feature Comparison: Best Remotes for Sonos (Universal)

Here is a comparison table that shows the major features all my top three best remotes for Sonos speakers side-by-side. These are my universal hard remote picks. I’ll compare the two keypads separately below also.

Harmony Elite Harmony Ultimate Home Harmony Companion
Controls Sonos
Sonos Speaker Limit 15 15 8
Auto detects Sonos during setup
Color LCD Touchscreen
Support for Sonos Favorites
Custom Activities such as “Good Morning” that turns on your lights, opens your blinds, starts the coffee maker and begins playing a specific Sonos station
Validated Sonos Speakers Sonos Amp Sonos Beam Sonos CONNECT Sonos CONNECT:AMP Sonos PLAY:1 Sonos PLAY:3 Sonos PLAY:5 Sonos PLAYBAR Sonos PLAYBASE Sonos ZP90 Sonos ZP120 Sonos SUB may be included as part of a system and will work with the speaker it has been joined with; however, Harmony cannot control it directly. Sonos BRIDGE (BR100) may be used to connect your wireless speaker system; however, there are not functions for Harmony to control. Same as Elite Same as Elite
Harmony Mobile App
Voice Control with Alexa, Google, Siri
Backlit buttons and haptic feedback
Backlit buttons only

Features Comparison: Best Wall Keypads

Here is a features comparison table that shows the features of the best remotes for Sonos (keypads only ) side-by-side.

Lutron Caseta IPort xPRESS
Mount Type Wall Wall or Magnetic Surface
Wall Plate Wall Mountable Wall Mountable and Magnetic
Playback Controls Play, Pause, Volume Up/Down, Favorites Play, Pause, Volume Up/Down, Favorites
Control Multiple Speakers at Once
Controls Non-Sonos Speakers
Battery Life 10 Years 4-6 Months (Before needs charge)
Battery Type CR2032 Replaceable Rechargeable Lithium Polymer
Setup See video above Via iOS device
Compatibility iOS and Android iOS only
Requires Bridge
Connectivity Technology WiFi (2.4 GHz, same as Sonos) WiFi (2.4 GHz, same as Sonos)

Best Remotes for Sonos: Final Analysis

If you can afford it, treat yourself to the Logitech Harmony Elite. I use this remote to control my Sonos speakers my, smart home devices, as well as my home theater. And I love it for all of the above reasons.

In addition to being one of the best remotes for Sonos you can buy today it is a huge conversation starter and will make your friends green with envy when they see how easy it is to control all your electronics and smart devices.

What I like best personally about using Elite with Sonos is the Alexa integration. I can just say, “Alexa play Rock music.” And it automatically plays my Rock playlist on my Sonos speakers in the desired rooms at the desired volume.

Too cool. The Companion is a solid budget remote that does most of what Elite does, minus the color touchscreen.

Either one of my picks for wall mounts is a solid choice. If you want a magnetic option go with iPort Express.


Best Remotes for Sonos Speakers: What Do You Think?

So what do you think of my picks for the best remotes for Sonos speakers?

Is the Harmony Elite too expensive to justify the cost?  Do you agree that the Ultimate is one of the coolest looking remotes around?  Or what is your take on the wall mounts?  If you really wanted to, you could install a few wall mounts in addition to using the Harmony remotes for the ultimate in Sonos control.

Do you love you some Sonos like me?

Please leave me a comment below and let me know your thoughts. I would love to hear from you.


You Might Also Like

If you enjoyed this article about the best remotes for Sonos speakers, you might also like some of these posts:

5 Rockin Universal Remotes for Bose [Systems, Speakers & Soundbars]

7 Best Universal Remotes with Voice Control in 2020

Logitech Harmony Comparison Chart: Big 2020 Update!

Harmony Elite vs Companion [2020 Side-By-Side Comparison]

Logitech Harmony Ultimate vs Ultimate Home vs Ultimate One vs Ultimate Hub: Oh My!


About the Author

best rca tv remotes appTim Brennan, Technical Writer & Blogger

Tim Brennan [a.k.a. “Tec Timmy”] is a senior technical writer with over 25 years of experience writing for companies and organizations in and around Greater Boston, including GE and MIT. In addition to actively writing for this site, Tim is also a regular contributor over at oneSmartcrib.com, a smart home blog. Tim holds a BA in Journalism from Northeastern University. When he is not writing about best remotes for Insignia TV, Brennan is a father to two sons, an active blogger, a Star Wars nut, and loves a good taco. There is a strong chance he is developing a crush on Amazon Alexa. You can learn more about Tim here.

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