At CNET, we've long ranked the Sonos family of products near the top of our favorite wireless audio gear. The secret to the bulletproof wireless streaming of the Sonos -- it operates free of dropouts -- is that the audio streamers uses their own proprietary mesh wireless network, which is separate and distinct from your home's Wi-Fi network. Up to 32 separate Sonos units can operate in your home, wirelessly communicating with one another -- and without the constrictions of Wi-Fi.
But there's one hitch: while the Sonos system is wireless, the first Sonos unit in your home needs to be hardwired to your network. (In that respect, it's just like a cordless phone system, where the main phone base station needs to be connected to a walljack.) Sonos has a workaround in the form of the
Still, when you're playing $300 to $500 for your first Sonos music player, spending an extra $49 can sting a bit. Thankfully, there are three deals that can reduce that price to free:
Free Bridge with any Play:3 or Play:5 from Sonos.com: Buy a
$100 Amazon credit with the purchase of any Play:3 or Play:5 from Amazon: Buy a Play:3 or Play:5 at Amazon, and the online retailer will reward you with a $100 credit. But this one has some catches: (1) it's only in effect through the end of Cyber Monday (11:59 p.m. PST on November 26); (2) the credit isn't awarded until 33 days after your items ships; (3) the credit must be used by April 30, 2013; and (4) it's only valid "while supplies last." Still, if that all works for you, you could buy a Bridge and still have $51 left over. Shop for Sonos at Amazon
$100 Target gift card with purchase of Sonos bundle: As a reader points out in our comments section below, Target is running a similar deal right now. On Cyber Monday, you get a $100 Target gift card with the purchase of either a Sonos Play:3 or Sonos Play:5 bundled with a wireless bridge. The gift card will be shipped separately. Offer expires November 26 at 11:59pm ET. Shop for Sonos at Target.com
Updated 11:15 a.m.: Updated to include the deal at Target.