connect/port with turntable

  • 3 December 2019
  • 6 replies

I have Sonos speakers throughout my house. I also have a separate turntable listening setup. The best thing about vinyl listening is keeping the analog signal from start to finish, as to be entirely uncompressed by any digitizing etc.


I’m interested in adding a Connect or Port to my turntable setup. It would have to be:


turntable → port → analog speakers


The port would obviously bring the music from my records to the various Sonos speakers throughout the house. But I want to make sure my nice dedicated analog speakers are still getting the full, uncompressed, analog signal from the turntable.


Is this the case? My hope is that the Port/Connect would digitize(compress) the signal to distribute throughout the house, but the signal passing thru to its RCA outputs remains uncompressed.


If I introduce a Connect or Port between the turntable and dedicated speakers, will these speakers be receiving a compressed signal? Or will it be identical to the signal they’d be getting if the Connect or Port wasn’t there?


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6 replies

My hope is that the Port/Connect would digitize(compress) the signal to distribute throughout the house, but the signal passing thru to its RCA outputs remains uncompressed.




The port does not do pass through and the RCA outputs have a digital signal upstream. 

Kumar is right about there not being analog pass through.  But you can choose to convert ‘uncompressed’.  If you think that that would still compromise the sound, i believe that to be a mistaken view.

The problem with using the ‘uncompressed’ setting is that it makes dropouts on the other speakers more likely, although it could be fine.  To be honest, i am not convinced you would notice the difference between compressed and uncompressed on your Sonos speakers in a blind trial, but hopefully you would not need to try that!

In uncompressed mode, the Line-in will be indistinguishable from the analog signal.  Nyquist-Shannon takes care of that.  Digital audio is not like digital video.  There aren’t any increasingly smaller pixels, or jaggy stair steps, or any of the other misleading analogies that would seem to denote a loss of fidelity. 

Fact is, an audio signal band-limited to 2X the highest frequency is reproduced exactly with no losses in the signal when going from ADC to DAC.  Since Sonos samples at 44.1 KHz, that means it will perfectly reproduce any signal up to and beyond the limits of human hearing.  

Are there those that disagree with this, regardless of the scientific facts?  Yes there are.  Are they right?  No, they are not.  Will they ever be convinced?  I’ve seen a couple over the years, but the vast majority rely on faith, not science. 


Thank you all, very helpful.

Thank you all, very helpful.


No problem.  Funny enough, we had a poster a while back who was playing vinyl through his Connect:Amp and was ecstatic that his “analog” vinyl was “blowing away” anything digital.  He never replied when it was explained to him that the “analog” he was listening to was actually converted to digital.  

A few more points to consider:

  1. Just being analog/uncompressed does not automatically mean that sound is superior. Apart from the limitations of vinyl as a medium for HiFi, there is the deterioration to the grooves accumulated over use, as well as the need for things like accurate platter speeds and cartridge alignment to keep sound quality up to even those constrained levels compared to digital audio, leaving aside the crackles and the pops of vinyl. The best of digital audio is now audibly and technically superior to the best of vinyl - in a blind test or when measured via instruments.
  2. There is no such thing in the world as a “not analog” speaker - reproducing sound via vibrating elements, they are all analog as is every Sonos speaker.
  3. There is no one till now that has picked out the difference between compressed and uncompressed in Sonos in a controlled blind listening test.
  4. Vinyl/turntables are cool to see and fun to use, and often a turntable is the only way to access a large legacy collection of records; but getting better sound quality from it is no longer objectively justifiable.