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The Simple Trick to Make Your Smart Speakers Sound Way Better

You can configure two smart speakers in a stereo pair and they'll sound way better. Here's how to do it with Amazon's, Google's, Apple's or Sonos's speakers.

multi speaker audio
Tucker Bowe

Welcome to Product Support, a column devoted to helping you get the most out of the stuff you already use.

By themselves, most smart speakers are only able to play mono sound, as opposed to stereo sound, because they have one driver and can only playback audio through one channel. This is the case with all the popular (and affordable) smart speakers, such as the Amazon Echo ($99), Nest Audio ($99), HomePod mini ($99) and Sonos One ($199). But for much better sound, all it takes is a pair.

Basically every affordable smart speaker can be paired with a twin to play audio in stereo, which vastly improves the quality of sound. It takes seconds and once done, your speakers will automatically play stereo audio; all the the big streaming services are able to play stereo audio because, after-all, that's how the tracks were originally recorded.

multi speaker audio
Two Apple HomePod minis, which cost $99 each, are configured in a stereo pair.
Tucker Bowe

Mono has its advantages. It gives you an even sound throughout the whole room. This means that no matter where you're standing in relation to the speaker, you should hear pretty much the same audio.

Stereo is the audio format that artists use when recording their albums, and it gives the listener a sense of space as it relates to where the band, singers and all the instrumentals are playing while on stage. This "stereo effect" is created because the left and right channels (or left and right speakers) are able to play different audio, which helps the audio sound more grandiose and, ultimately, more accurate.

If you've got two of the same speaker, it's definitely worth a try. And if you were looking for an excuse to pick up a second, this is all you need.

How to create a stereo pair with two Amazon Echo speakers

  1. Place two Echo speakers in the same room.
  2. Open the Alexa app.
  3. Select the Devices tab in the bottom-right.
  4. Tap the Add (+) icon in the top-right corner.
  5. Select Set Up Audio System.
  6. Select Stereo Pair.
  7. Select the two Echo speakers (must be same type of speaker).
  8. Designate each speaker as either the left or right channel.


    How to create a stereo pair with two Nest Audio (Google Home) speakers

    1. Place two Echo speakers in the same room.
    2. Open the Google Home app.
    3. Tap Set up devices follow the in-app steps.
    4. Tap one of the speakers that you want to pair.
    5. Select Settings in the top-right corner.
    6. Tap Speaker pair Next and select two devices that you’d like to pair Next.
    7. The LED lights on one of the speakers will start flashing white. Tap Left or Right to designate right and left channels.
    8. Select Next and follow the remaining in-app steps.


      How to create a stereo pair with two Apple HomePods

        1. Place two HomePod or HomePod mini speakers in the same room.
        2. Open the Home app on your iPhone or iPad.
        3. Tap and hold the icon for one of the HomePods.
        4. In the drop-down menu, select Settings.
        5. Select Use as Stereo Pair and follow the onscreen instructions.

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          How to create a stereo pair with two Sonos speakers

          1. Place two of the same Sonos speakers in the same room.
          2. Open the Sonos app on your iPhone or Android device.
          3. Select the Settings tab in the bottom-right corner.
          4. Select System.
          5. Under the Products section, select one of the speakers you’d like to use in your stereo pair.
          6. Select the Set Up Stereo Pair (or Create Stereo Pair if using the Sonos S1 Controller) and follow the in-app instructions.

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