Line In: New No Delay Local Mode

  • 14 February 2013
  • 38 replies
  • 26720 views

Userlevel 1
I'm using a Connect to switch between TV audio (line-in) and other traditional Sonos sources. I find the minimum 70ms delay on the line-in input to be maddening. While it occasionally works out that audio/video are reasonably sync'd, more times than not the Connect noticeably degrades A/V sync. Additionally, if other televisions are on in adjacent rooms (common occurrence) the delay in the Connect creates an obvious audio sync problem between devices. After having read the forums, etc. I understand some of the technical reasons for the delay; I’m not proposing we violate the laws of space/time. What I am proposing is a dual-mode line-in function. The primary mode would work exactly as it does now (ability to share Connect line-in with all Sonos components). The secondary mode would be a local only mode (no sharing) and would forgo the analog to digital conversion process and simply provide direct analog amplification for the line input. This would completely eliminate the line in delay problem! This may involve a hardware design modification in addition to a software change, but I consider it a must have. I'm fairly new to Sonos (2 months) and the system generally has exceeded my expectations. However, I consider the line-in delay issue a major shortcoming.

This topic has been closed for further comments. You can use the search bar to find a similar topic, or create a new one by clicking Create Topic at the top of the page.

38 replies

I found a solution to this: simply set the Line-in to "uncompressed" in the line-in settings. It's the compression that is causing the delay.

It helps but there is still delay, though less than before.
Userlevel 1
The lag is real and problematic. I use a TV with line-in connected to a Play:5 with the volume on the TV off. So only Sonos plays the sound. My wife doesn't notice the 70ms delay, but I do. People's voices are behind and it bothers me a lot.

I tried this video to test the sync delay (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s_PbyRpKrRk) and if I turn on the volume on the TV I hear two distinct beeps, really bad.

There is an audio delay function on my TV, but it doesn't make any difference, I can set it from 0 to -60ms.

I understand and appreciate what the speaker is doing, but for this use case, it's pretty bad. I'd like to see an official answer if this is something that just can't be turned of with a setting.


Yes it’s at the bottom of about the third page. That’s like saying we all should read all the small print on our insurance policies. It would never have occurred to me that a line-in input in a speaker would have a delay on it, so I’m not really going to be looking for it in the small print. Perhaps if they had highlighted it in bold as you have...



As the old sage Oscar Wilde used to say - Righteous indignation is the last bastion of defense for a failure. 🆒
[quote=jgatie]Like a warning that says "Crunchy raw unboned real dead frog". Makes sense.

If the cap fits wear it. If Sonos think this feature is so bad they don’t want to tell people about it, they should fix it. If they can’t be bothered they should at least make people

So if people are "not aware", it is their own fault. Can't think of a better place to make people aware than the actual page that instructs you how to configure and use the Line-in feature.


Yes it’s at the bottom of about the third page. That’s like saying we all should read all the small print on our insurance policies. It would never have occurred to me that a line-in input in a speaker would have a delay on it, so I’m not really going to be looking for it in the small print. Perhaps if they had highlighted it in bold as you have...
Like a warning that says "Crunchy raw unboned real dead frog". Makes sense.

If the cap fits wear it. If Sonos think this feature is so bad they don’t want to tell people about it, they should fix it. If they can’t be bothered they should at least make people aware.


They tell people about it all the time. It's right here on the Line-in support page:

https://sonos.custhelp.com/app/answers/detail/a_id/1091

Uncompressed line-in uses the WAV format which can put a lot of strain on your network if you are in a Standard Setup and have a lot of Sonos players. A benefit of using Uncompressed is that there will be very little delay from the source and the audio. With uncompressed line-in, the delay is about 75ms.

. . .

Compressed line-in uses the SBC codec which is much less taxing on your home network at the expense of having a longer delay between the source and the audio. With compressed line-in, the delay is about 2 seconds. When using line-in for use with AirPlay, an additional delay of half a second is introduced.




So if people are "not aware", it is their own fault. Can't think of a better place to make people aware than the actual page that instructs you how to configure and use the Line-in feature.
Like a warning that says "Crunchy raw unboned real dead frog". Makes sense.

If the cap fits wear it. If Sonos think this feature is so bad they don’t want to tell people about it, they should fix it. If they can’t be bothered they should at least make people aware.
Userlevel 7
Badge +22
I don't find it unusable for live audio. The delay to me doesn't effect lip sync - I just have to turn down TV speakers.
Or one could do research beforehand, and never have to buy the item to see the disclaimer on the back.
Like a warning that says "Crunchy raw unboned real dead frog". Makes sense.
So why not just put a note next to the line-in feature to say that there is a delay which makes it unsuitable for any live audio replay?
He posted the same thing in another thread. Borderline spamming, IMHO. And why didn't he do any research before plunking down that money?
SONOS WAKE UP. Purchased Sonos equipment for $1,500 today and I`m very disappointed that there is no delay option using Connect on a high-end stereo and the Sonos speakers in other rooms. How does this post has 16,000 views and this feature is still missing? Is this a moderated community - I would hope for a reply from Sonos, would hate to have to return all the equipment which otherwise is stellar.:@

This thread has nothing to do with your post. It is about eliminating the delay on the line-in on a standalone unit, not the delay due to a receiver DSP modes delaying the output of a Connect.
SONOS WAKE UP. Purchased Sonos equipment for $1,500 today and I`m very disappointed that there is no delay option using Connect on a high-end stereo and the Sonos speakers in other rooms. How does this post has 16,000 views and this feature is still missing? Is this a moderated community - I would hope for a reply from Sonos, would hate to have to return all the equipment which otherwise is stellar.:@
A Connect (without the Amp) essentially converts audio to digital to send over WiFi ... and when it arrives at the remote Sonos speaker end, plays the digital WiFi signal transmitted via Connect through the Sonos speaker. While this audi/digital conversion is likely very fast, there will always be some latency as the audio is buffered/converted and sent in digital blocks via WiFi and the reassembled at the remote speaker end. And thus, the inevitable delay (75ms in the case of Sonos with compression turned-off). If want to have live sync audio (e.g., guitar, piano playing, singing), you must plug directly into an Amp without then sending off to wireless speakers (I don't care who's wireless speakers you use). If you are watching a video (TV, DVD) then the audio delay can sometimes be compensated for via settings on your AV receiver or the way your system is setup (e.g., Audio-in to Connect directly from the source (DVD, Cable Box) meanwhile have the video pass through an intermediate A/V receiver/amp on it's way to a TV and or projector wherein there is likely some modest delay. If you connect your audio source directly to line into a Connect:AMP with speakers directly connected to the AMP, then there should be no delay, otherwise, yes, I agree that Sonos should fix this. Ditto for connecting directly to a line-in on any other Sonos speaker (or PlayBar if you have an optical out from your audio source) as long as no other remote Sonos speakers are included in the mix.
Userlevel 5
Badge +4
It would be a really easy firmware upgrade option to add a toggle switch that said "No delay for plugging in mics, instruments, TVs, DJ mixers. Yes/No"

Then a warning that simply says "Please be aware that while in No Delay Mode you can't sync your music with your other Sonos devices".


Adding these features are free and adds something to the system, there is no negative.
Fixed, I started with issues with aux on my play five tv started lagging, turned out to be audio compression settings I changed these and it was sorted.
I gave up well over a year ago. Replaced my AMP that amplified the TV as well with a NAD amp and a Connect. It sat me back €1000 but the delay was driving me insane.
IMO sonos should fix that delay problem when the room is not streaming to other rooms.
I'm hoping for a new AMP in the near feature with 2 line connections and 1 digital (optical?) and no more delay!
Badge
I'm tossing my hat into the ring on this as well Was really hoping that the 75ms delay when using uncompressed audio would work with recording my piano with some audio software but the lag is just too much. I don't need to stream the audio to any of my other systems - I just need it for the speaker that it's plugged into. But no go. Now I'm trying to rationalize keeping it for another room or just sending it back. The simplicity of design and great sound would have made this a perfect fit for my music room, but in the end - I need as close to zero latency as possible to make it work.
Just discovering how much of a nuisance this line-in delay is. Tried plugging a DJ mixer into my Connect, and the delay between headphones (connected to the mixer) and speakers is literally impossible to work with. Bit of a bummer, but at least I can still bypass my Connect and plug the mixer directly into my amplifier. If I want audio to other rooms, I suppose I could always plug line out from my amplifier into the Connect...
.... there is no way of making this choice before you buy it. I love the Play 5 anyway, but I had hoped that I would be able to use it to double as a PA system. The delay makes this impossible.

Um, they give you a 45 day trial period:

"Products purchased directly from Sonos or from an authorized Sonos dealer may be returned under the following circumstances:

Within 1 year of the date of original shipment for a defect ; or
Within 45 days of the date of original shipment for any reason "

http://www.sonos.com/support/policies
Userlevel 7
Badge +21
If "no delay" is a requirement for your application, then SONOS is not the system for you. For example, SONOS would be a poor choice for use as a guitar amplifier or PA system. Except when used in conjunction with PLAYBAR, one should not attempt to use SONOS components in a surround sound application.

This statement would be fine if there was anything in the SONOS specs to warn you of the delay, but as there is no information suggesting such a delay exists there is no way of making this choice before you buy it. I love the Play 5 anyway, but I had hoped that I would be able to use it to double as a PA system. The delay makes this impossible.


Oh come on! If you're going to make that statement I'll point out there is NOTHING in the Sonos advertising or marketing output that suggests Sonos is a great PA system, karaoke system, DJ deck or guitar AMP.

Besides, Sonos offer a very generous money back no questions asked if you buy from them.
If "no delay" is a requirement for your application, then SONOS is not the system for you. For example, SONOS would be a poor choice for use as a guitar amplifier or PA system. Except when used in conjunction with PLAYBAR, one should not attempt to use SONOS components in a surround sound application.

This statement would be fine if there was anything in the SONOS specs to warn you of the delay, but as there is no information suggesting such a delay exists there is no way of making this choice before you buy it. I love the Play 5 anyway, but I had hoped that I would be able to use it to double as a PA system. The delay makes this impossible.
SONOS was conceived as a robust whole house stereo system and it works very well for that purpose. So well, that the SONOS company now dominates this application. That 70ms delay is one of the reasons why SONOS works so well because it allows the players some time to work through the inevitable little day to day network issues. Eliminating the delay would result in a less robust system.

If "no delay" is a requirement for your application, then SONOS is not the system for you. For example, SONOS would be a poor choice for use as a guitar amplifier or PA system. Except when used in conjunction with PLAYBAR, one should not attempt to use SONOS components in a surround sound application.

True, "anyone" can build an inexpensive Bluetooth speaker, but this is not a practical whole house approach. Bluetooth is optimal for short range, very low power communication -- perfect for handset to ear microphones and such or single room, portable wireless speakers, but not for covering a whole house.
I can tell you that I've tried with the compression settings on the Sonos units, and the direct vs. filtered sound on the home theater system (connected with Sonos Connect), and I can not get the Sonos components (Play 3/5) to play without an audible delay. This is really terrible. Looks like this feature has been requested for going on ten years!
I found a solution to this: simply set the Line-in to "uncompressed" in the line-in settings. It's the compression that is causing the delay.