Music quiz with Sonos

  • 6 December 2022
  • 6 replies

We have a small restaurant with an outdoor and an indoor area and our new setup looks like this:

  • One Sonos Amp to power two pairs of ceiling speakers inside
  • A bunch of Sonos One speakers to cover kitchen, dishwashing room, office etc
  • One Sonos Amp to power two pairs of outdoors speakers
  • We also have a mixer that we have previously used for live music and music quiz outdoors

How should I set up the new system up in order to be able to run music quiz nights (basically a wireless microphone and a Spotify playlist)? It is no problem if the sound is not perfectly in sync inside and outside.

My initial idea was to simply connect the wireless microphone directly to the Sonos Amp powering the outside speakers but (XLR from microphone box to 2 x RCA in to the Sonos Amp). But now I have started wondering what will actually happen when I plug in an input device to the Amp. I want to be able to have mix the music with different volume with the sound from the microphone and I want this mixed sound (voice and music) to be played on all my speakers both inside and outside.

Previously I have used a Macbook with Spotify connected to my mixer combined with the microphone connected to the same mixer and then the host of the quiz nights could simply adjust the background music from the Macbook while using the microphone. Maybe I could keep the same setup with the mixer and simply take an output signal from the mixer to the Sonos Amp and it would play in all rooms?

Would a Sonos Port add any value in the future setup?

When I ask the guys in the shop where I have bought all the stuff they don’t seem to be able to answer my questions in a good way. I would assume I am not the only restaurant in the world having a Sonos system in place which would be possible to use for quiz, live music, karaoke…???

I was hoping to be able to throw away a bunch of my previous equipment now that I have Sonos stuff in place...

6 replies

Badge +20

Sonos is NOT designed in anyway for this purpose, most importantly will be the delay in using it as a PA. You speak into the microphone and after a delay your voice comes out the speakers.


I have understood there will be a delay between the different components in the Sonos system and that is no problem in my case. However, if I can expect a delay also with the Amp directly connected to the mixer it is obviously a problem.

My theory is the following:

  • with an input signal from the mixer to one Amp in the Sonos setup it should be possible to play the same sound (mixed voice and music from mixer) on all devices in the Sonos network - is it correct?
  • you can expect a delay between the directly connected Amp and the other components connected via WiFi, but I would not expect a delay in the speakers driven by the directly connected Amp - is it correct?


Badge +20

There is always a delay even with the Amp, Sonos was designed for multiroom audio, even with TV going to other rooms there is a delay. 

Sorry wrong hardware for the application. Most weeks someone asks about using Sonos for DJ or PA use and it’s the same answer.

Hi again,

So even if I had a very simple system like a microphone connected directly to a Sonos Amp there would be a delay between the microphone and the connected loudspeakers? How is it possible?

I can surely understand the delay to other components connected via WiFi, but a delay for the directly connected Amp sounds really strange to be honest. 


Badge +20

Because it not a simple amplifier consisting of a bunch of line gain stages, it’s a computer running software and the audio in gets digitised then buffered so it stays in sync with other Sonos devices. 

Just stick to a PA system / amp designed for the job, you could add a Sonos Port to this as a music source,

I have now tested the setup MacbookAir (3.5 mm) to mixer (2xRCA) and Shure wireless microphone to same mixer via XLR and 1/4”. Then mixer to Sonos Amp1 (2xRCA) and Amp1 Line in as source for the whole Sonos network.

Result - works perfectly without any delay on the directly connected speakers and furthermore no delay on any of the other components either.

Conclusion - for me Sonos works just fine as a small PA with mixer input to run simple live music, pub-quiz etc. Very happy to get rid of my old equipment.