The Sonos Ace is Sonos’ first foray into the wireless headphone market, so we find out if it’s everything fans have been hoping for.

Sonos might be a big player in the speaker and sound bar space, but there’s one product the company’s fans have long pined for: wireless headphones. With the Sonos Ace that all changes and it sure is a confident first step into a pretty heated market.

Straight out of the box the Sonos Ace comes bundled with everything you’ll need to get up and running. There’s a USB-C charging cable, USB C to 3.5 cable and a travel case that neatly houses the headphones themselves. In what feels like an especially extra touch the carrying case even contains a small pouch that holds both cables – magnetically attaching to the inside, yet I appreciated the inclusion all the same. The only downside to the actual case is its potential long-term durability. During my testing, for example, it felt like it was a little easy to cop the odd stain when being tossed into a backpack, but it’s still a much better solution than Apple’s notorious AirPods Max shell.

Once you’ve thrown the Sonos Ace onto your head, you’ll likely be surprised how light they feel. Weighing in at 312 grams, Sonos has clearly shot for a lightweight finish and succeeded. Likewise, the combo of memory foam and vegan leather makes for a delightful cushion on the ear that doesn’t lead to any unwanted pressure while also providing enough give to avoid hitting internal drivers. That means that I never encountered any issue wearing the Ace for hours on end, and thanks to the sleek clean design (I tested the matte black model), it easily blended into almost any outfit.

This premium approach extends to the wider feature set as well. Noise cancellation is chief among these and did an admirable job blocking out most background noise as I walked through Sydney streets or the QVB, save for the odd truck or bus. The moment I started lightly playing music though, almost everything disappeared instantly.

What was more impressive to me perhaps is the transparency mode. Having conversations with others was shockingly true-to-life and actually most comparable to that of the AirPods Pro, which is often viewed as best in class. It’s even more impressive considering how much more coverage the Ace has over your ears, but it was nice not have to worry about pulling them off every time somebody wants to have a quick chat.

It’s worth noting that my particular review unit did seem to run into a potential tech/software issue whereby I’d hear a slight audio pop (similar slowly inserting a 3.5 mm aux cable into a socket) while in noise cancellation mode, but without audio playing. That said, the issue has gradually resolved itself after a few software updates, so I can only imagine it’s a minor bug that’s more isolated to my unit.

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It was a bug worth preserving with though, because the Sonos Ace delivers the audio performance you’d expect from Sonos. There was big, heavy bass when I threw on Kendrick Lamar’s Not Like Us, while also being able to deliver the clarity of Billie Elish’s HIT ME HARD AND SOFT. In fact, almost any track that I tested had a well-balanced sound stage that felt like it never missed a beat. If you do want to tweak, Sonos’ app works a treat and also does well to handle other features like head-tracking and bass boost. I was surprised in general that with an ecosystem as locked down as Apple’s it was a breeze not only to get the Ace connected but manage them day-to-day and even show battery health on the main screen.

When it comes to home entertainment, the Sonos Ace is also capable of handling Dolby Atmos that auto switches from your compatible Sonos sound bar to the headphones, but while unfortunately I didn’t have a Sonos speaker to test that functionality, I did still manage to pair my Ace to my LG tv, and it was a pretty seamless process. What’s more is that the moment I turn the Ace on the TV asked if I wanted to connect, saving me from having to rummage through my Bluetooth settings if I wanted to connect my AirPods Max instead.

This also meant I could use the cans to play PS5 and Xbox Games without any issue, but you can also use the 3.5 aux cable to connect to either console or even the Switch as well, and in my testing didn’t have any issue with performance or latency.

All this equates to the Sonos Ace being a top tier headset that easy meets some lofty expectations. It’s certainly pricey at $699, but if you’ve got the cash or been looking to invest in a mainstay set of multi-purpose wireless headphones, it’s hard to imagine you’d be disappointed.

The Sonos Ace is available for $699 from June 6. You can grab it from the Sonos online store here.

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