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3.3 out of 5 stars28
3.3 out of 5 stars
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on 26 April 2012
This controller is easy to use, and does what you would expect, when its working, making it easy to listen to your library anywhere in the house.
HOWEVER, it will fail with time (you just have to look on many forums, including the one on the Sonos' own website) and the touch screen will fail after only limited use.

I have probably only used mine around 30 times and most of the screen no longer responds, which seems to be the common problem users complain about, which is something you dont expect for such a costly item. Mine is out of warranty and going to cost a lot to repair, and I have just accepted that I have to use the app for the Iphone to control the system instead, as it does the same. I would suggest to anyone that if you already own and iPhone or android phone to just use the apps as a controller and dont bother with this highly unreliable, yet fantastic piece of kit.

The rest of my system works fine, dont get me wrong, sonos is good, it is just this particular controller that will break very very soon!
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on 10 May 2011
I've had a CR200 for 9 months now and I would echo most of the other reviewers comments in that it does seem like an expensive piece of kit at first glance. However, it is one of those things that once you've used it for a while, but then have to use one of the alternatives, you realise just how good it is. It's very responsive - the motion sensor wakes the screen up as soon as you pick it up, and it's immediately ready to use. The motion sensor can be disabled if you're going to be carrying it around, however. Having the hardware buttons on the front for common functions, and the purpose made charging cradle also just make it that bit more convenient and usable than the iphone/android options.

I have knocked one star off my rating due to the fact that my controller developed what seems to be a common fault - parts of the screen stopped responding to touch in more and more places, some of which eventually made it unusable. On the plus side, Sonos handled it very well. They were obviously aware they had a problem with the batch which my unit came from, as they had already emailed me to tell me they had extended the free warranty on my controller for an extra year. When I contacted them about the problem, they arranged to have the defective unit collected and I opted to have them send me out a new one asap (after giving them my credit card details). The deal was that if they got the defective one back within 14 days, I wouldn't be charged for new one. Otherwise I'd have had to wait until they received the bad one before sending out the replacement.

Update (Nov 2011):
The controller I got as a replacement for the first faulty one has now developed the same problem, after about 10 months. Disappointed with Sonos that they haven't managed to fix a quality or design problem which they are well aware of. While my controller is away being fixed/replaced, I'm using my IPhone4 to control my Sonos system, and it's just not as good. The CR200 controller is always ready to go as soon as you pick it up - not so the IPhone app (unlock the screen, and then often wait while it tries to connect to the Sonos system again)

Update (July 2012)
My 3rd controller has just had to be returned (luckily a few days before the 2yr warranty ran out) for the same reason as the first two. I was extremely reluctant to take a replacement, given the history of this product, but Sonos promised that they have indeed fixed the design or manufacturing problem and backed this up with a further 2 years warranty. Interestingly the sticker on the inside of this latest replacement says (c)Sonos 200x-2012 whereas the old one said 200x-2009. Hopefully this means that the design (or components) have changed. Time will tell....

Update (April 2014)
My 4th controller has now gone the same way as the previous 3. Sonos also seem to have stopped making them, presumably because of the very high failure rate. Some advice to anyone who might be thinking of buying one of these secondhand: I wouldn't, unless it comes with some sort of (long) guarantee!
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To put this review into some context I have tested all the controllers currently available to control the Sonos including:

- Apple ipod / iphone - Free from the Apple app store
- Android (Andronos) - Free from Android Marketplace
- Sonos CR100
- PC / Laptop Application - Free from Sonos

Yes the CR200 is expensive but in terms of overall user experience I have found it to be superior to all the other controller options. Although the family have access to all of the above this one is the preferred option everytime. It really is the quickest and most reliable choice. As spare / additional controllers all the above options work great but having now used the CR200 for three months I believe it justified the initial outleigh just in terms if the overall user experience and quality feel. Recommended
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on 27 October 2010
very good if a little expensive. Much quicker than the iphone/ipod app. However, after only a few months it developed a fault where parts of the touchscreen were not responsive. Judging from the online forums it seems to be a common problem. However, Sonos were very quick to acknowledge the problem and I am currently awaiting a replacement. Rating would have been less than the four stars had it not been for the very good (so far!) customer service from Sonos.
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I am actually going to review three products from the same series that interlink.
Sonos Systems ZonePlayer - S5 Black
Sonos BR100UK1 ZoneBridge 100 Wireless Music Controller
Sonos Wireless Music Controller 200
The beginning of each review is the same for one reason; when you open the box you get the same thing & as it's very helpful I want to mention it each time just in case the reader doesn't need to buy all three & doesn't read all three reviews...if you have read one skip the next parapraph.

When you open the box you see a clearly printed cd sized sheet which tells you in large writing what to do if you get stuck & that no question is too small or too big. As I was initially setting up the whole system at one time this was quite reassuring as my first thoughts were ` where do I start?' underneath this sheet is another - the quick set up guide which clearly shows for steps to get set up (answering my earlier question about where to start) the first step shows the different options depending on which components you have purchased. Following this guide I had the system set up in less than 10 minutes (including unpacking time), with no problems, queries or mistakes. I genuinely believe if you can read you can set this up.

The controller 200 is the most expensive remote control I've ever owned. It looks very much like the old style palm pilot. I feel that the `under design' of this (a rectangular pad) is a deliberate once it lights up it becomes a superb piece of kit. Fluid to use, the touch screen is precise like a HTC smartphone (never used an Iphone so can't compare) with movements reminiscent of using a touchpad on a laptop. There are no issues with the wrong thing `clicking' when you push somewhere on the screen. It's communicates seamlessly with the zoneplayer and is a great addition to the system being even more intuitive to use than the pre installed software that came with your system and saves you sitting at your pc / opening the laptop (especially if you set up a NAS (network attached storage device to keep your music on). You can still use both (cue 10 mins of me & the other half trying to change channels, mp3 etc to wind each other up) as information is updated to both systems at the same time.

Delay from pressing the button to the zoneplayer doing something is about ¼ second, which on my system is the same as using the pc software. It's brilliant.

This is a great addition to the system and well worth the investment.


This item went faulty within a month of having it. The screen would scroll as if someone was using it, it wouldn't charge up and when suddenly 'working' would only blast the radio out at top volume.

I used the online chat side of the technical support (based in USA) I 'spoke' to a couple of people (as I was unsure I'd explained myself properly - not because of any issue on their part) who were excellent, very helpful, professional and friendly. It appeared to be what I would call a known issue (poor on an item of this cost) however I was given a choice of ways to get it replaced which included them sending me a new one & billing me if I failed to return the old one. However I chose to send of the old one first & then get sent a replacement. It is worth noting they prefer the original packaging. Also of note is that once you have packed and labelled your item, when you telephone to arrange collection via courier it is same day pick up. The new item arrived within 5 days of my initial collection. I have had the new/replacement longer than the original item with no problems.

As such I would delete one star from the rating for the item going faulty & one for it being a 'known issue' however the customer service/communication/process of diagnosing a fault gains one star & the speed of the replacement (with options available for make it faster) gains another point back leaving the score untouched. I would expect and hope all companies to offer such service but it doesn't happen; I do appreciate that they sell high priced goods and usually in bundles and feel this is reflected in the service. I would still reccomend Sonos.
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on 25 August 2010
Expensive it is, but they say you continue to experience the quality long after the cost is forgotten. Nice snappy interface and sharp clear graphics. You could use the free iTouch or iPhone app to control the Sonos but that has two disadvantages; one is that you have to turn the iDevice on, select the app and wait for it to connect, and the other is that it doesn't use the Sonos wireless, it requires that you have a wireless access point in your house connected to the Sonos in some way.

If you're used to the older CR100 and used it in the bathroom (as it is splashproof), unfortunately the CR200 isn't splashproof, but don't let that stop you buying this lovely piece of technology!
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on 29 May 2012
I am now on my 5th controller, they seem to work for a month then the touch screen develops faults. I thought I was just unlucky after the 2nd failed, it is pretty obvious now that there must be a fundamental issue with this model controller. Baring in mind its cost I have to give it a big fat ZERO!!!! But the site does not allow it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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on 24 December 2009
I've written a fuller review elsewhere on the Sonos system, the CR200 is the icing on the cake. Very cool, it works (every time), is not too big, not too small.... I have an itouch too, but prefer the CR200 for controlling the system.

Bit pricey, that's all I'd say!
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TOP 1000 REVIEWERon 12 September 2011
The sonos touchscreen controller is great when it works, it is so much more immediate than if you use the iPod or iPhone apps. The interface is pretty intuitive and the unit itself is not unattractive, though for the price you may perhaps have hoped for something slicker to look at.

So why only three stars? Of the 4 we have had, 2 have developed faults (the bottom of the touchscreen stopped working on one, and another intermittently seems to have problems charging). Such a shame that reliability is so flakey as they are otherwise great. If you are in two minds about whether to get one, I would say go for it, but be prepared to have to send it back - keep all your documentation and original packaging...

Edit Feb 2013: since I wrote this review, sonos seem to have dropped the controller in favour of the iPod/iPad/iPhone app. Given this development, and the reliability issues, on balance I would not buy the controller today, but go for the app instead.
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on 24 April 2010
Bought the first controller because I wanted to compare ease of use etc. with the downloaded Sonos app on my iPod touch.
The Sonos controller works brilliantly. In my view the two works equally well. My wife however prefers the Sonos controller and feels it is easier to use.
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