Unstable system

  • 10 November 2021
  • 17 replies
  • 184 views

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S2 with almost 30 Sonos products. No Booms or Moves.

Comcast Xfinity with supposedly 1 gig.

Three floors, 5,000 sf. Router on center floor is connected to a Boost.

Other two floors each have a Boost connected to Ethernet ports.

No speakers are wired.

The system struggles whenever a few speakers are assembled and more are attempted to be added.

The Sonos message is that “WiFi signal is unstable”

I will spend whatever might be required to fix this.

Comcast suggests Netgear extenders or TP Link extenders.

A prior responder suggested getting fixed IP addresses, but I am unsure how to do that.

are there any good recommendations? Should I ask BestBuy to send a tech?

Would the concept of the Netgear or TPLink extenders make sense with the system setup that I described?

 

 

 

 


17 replies

I don’t think you need to spend money to get this system to work. Nor am I a fan of extenders at all, and if you’re indeed using a BOOST that is connected to your base router, they wouldn’t make a difference, except to create additional interference for the SonosNet system.

I’d certainly review the wifi interference FAQ for any nuggets, paying extra attention to making sure that your normal router’s wifi signal isn’t on or near the same channel as the SonosNet channel.

Assigning the devices fixed/reserved IP addresses is a good idea. You should be able to look at the manual for the router which should tell you how to do that, as it differs for most routers. It resolves a particular potential problem, but shouldn’t be looked at as a “silver bullet” that fixes everything. 

I’d also be double checking to make sure that none of the devices have their ‘radio/wifi’ turned off, which is the way that the SonosNet / Sonos mesh system works. As soon as you turn one off, you lose that as a node in the mesh, and that can cause issues.

You haven’t mentioned if this is with a single source of music, or multiple sources. What as you using as a test case?

Ultimately, I’d recommend that you submit a system diagnostic within 10 minutes of experiencing this instability/breakups/whatever, and call Sonos Support to discuss it.

There may be information included in the diagnostic that will help Sonos pinpoint the issue and help you find a solution.

When you speak directly to the phone folks, they have tools at their disposal that will allow them to give you advice specific to your Sonos system and network.

Hi @Nearly Clueless,

This sounds like a bit of a task, but let’s give it a go…

I assume you are saying you do not have any portable products Roam/Move? - That makes things A little easier if that is the case? Assuming there’s no portable Sonos products, perhaps start by checking if your WiFi/credentials are stored in the Sonos App ‘Settings/System/Network/Manage Networks’ - if they are stored, you should remove them, but only if there are no Moves/Roams in your Household. Also whilst here in the App make a note the SonosNet channel (important).

What router (make/model) is it exactly and what WiFi channels / channel-widths are in use currently for the 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz Bands? …My suggestion here is to set the 2.4Ghz WiFi channel to fixed channel 1, 6 or 11 as they are non-overlapping channels, but do not choose the SonosNet channel. So if the SonosNet channel is set to channel 6, then only choose channel 1 or 11 here (just as an example) - set the channel width to 20MHz only. Just leave the 5Ghz wifi band alone for now.

After doing the above, I would reboot the router and just get every Sonos device back online and if any fail to appear in the App just reboot (power off/on) those devices only to get them to appear.

Next.. it would be helpful if you post a screenshot of your Sonos Matrix to this thread …

To do that open a web browser and type in the following URL pointing to one of your Sonos speakers (not a Sonos Boost)…

http://xxx.xxx.xxx.xxx:1400/support/review …(just insert IP address of a speaker in place if the ‘xxx’ placeholders)

To discover an IP address of one of your speakers goto the Sonos App ‘Settings/System/About my System’ - you will see a list of your Sonos devices and their IP addresses.

Once you have navigated to the URL address in a web browser select the Matrix link and go onto screen capture the entire image of coloured squares and post it back here so we can see the connections between your speakers .. I’m just interested to see what the Boost devices are doing and what interference you may have in your Household after making the above suggested changes..

Anyhow I think that will do for now and it’s a lot to be going on with.. so I’ll stop there and just wait for your reply.

Userlevel 7

Hi @Nearly Clueless 

  1. What is a Boom?
  1. Having 1GB coming into your home via the cable from your ISP to your modem does not (in 99% of homes) translate into 1GB wireless transmission by your router
  1. Your Boost is connected to your router (not the opposite)
  1. If you are using a Boost then your Sonos is in WIRED Mode  although no speakers are physically connected via Ethernet cable.
  2. If you look in the Sonos App under Settings > System  > System Settings > About My System > the last notation for each speaker/component should read as WM:0 which is WIRED mode when using a Boost or speaker connected to your router via Ethernet.
  3. If a speaker (or speakers) show as WM:1 that speaker is in WiFi Mode. The Move will always show as WM:1 as it cannot join Wired mode (WM:0).
  4. If speakers other the the Move show as WM:0 and/or WM:1 your system is running in a MIXED mode. Although possible it’s better to have all speakers in WIRED Mode (WM:0) or WiFI Mode (WM:1)
  1. Having a Boost on each floor plugged into an Ethernet port doesn’t mean that port is getting back to your router. You can test each port by connecting a laptop to the port via Ethernet (with its WiFi turned-off) and try connecting to the internet.
  1. Adding range extenders and TP Link Extenders can complicate matters for Sonos.

After you verify the satellite Ethernet ports are live; you may have to setup your Sonos again as follows:

  1. Unplug all Sonos
  2. Reboot your router
  3. Delete the Sonos App
  4. Power cycle you iOS or Android device 
  5. Check your iOS or Android device for updates
  6. Install the Sonos App
  7. Setup Sonos starting with a Boost plugged into a port on your router
  8. Setup Sonos (Speakers/Amps/Ports) 1x1 starting with Home theater components (Arc/Beam/Surrounds/Sub)
  9. Setup other Sonos 1x1
  10. Test your setup
  11. Install additional Boost modules if needed

Note: Once again @Ken_Griffiths and @Airgetlam beat me in the typing contest. Their advice is good; but mine is better. Just Kidd’n :sweat_smile:

On an earlier thread I asked:

  

On our three floor house, I have Boosts connected to Ethernet ports on two floors, and to the router on the main level.

How are the first two Boosts connected back to the router? If a CAT5e/6/7 cable has been pulled, all well and good. If it’s via a powerline connection or the Ethernet ports on mesh WiFi satellites it would be asking for trouble.

 

 Answer there came none.

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I am unsure how to do a full capture of matrix. Here are two segments’ screenshots:

 

@Nearly Clueless,

It looks like ‘Boost 2’ presumably is the one in the middle of the Home connected to the main router on the ‘Center floor’ and is performing the role of ‘root bridge’- if that’s the case, then that looks okay to me. 

The two ‘Other’ Boosts have some degree of noise/interference around them, so if they are near any other wireless devices, then perhaps give them a little more distance, but they look like they are connecting to your other devices okay, but can’t see all with the images posted.

The one issue that stands out is the ‘red’ shaded front bedroom ‘One W Alexa’ - that has a lot of interference - and again take a closer look at what’s around that speaker.

In my view a good ‘rule of thumb’ is to give a device a distance of one metre distance from any other wireless device wherever it’s practical to do that.

Have you implemented the changes suggested in the earlier posts here?

By the way to capture any full scrollable screen display image on an iOS device or other device  - perhaps see this online article, which may assist👍:

https://www.switchingtomac.com/tutorials/how-to-capture-a-scrolling-screenshot-on-mac-ios-and-ipados/

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The modem is a Comcast Xfinity Gateway TG4482A.

The Sonos net channel is at 11. I do not know how to set the 2.4 GHz to either of the other two channels.

Also unsure how to set the channel width to 20 MHz only.

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The speaker in the red cell is in a room that seemingly has the most interference in the house.

sorry for these piecemeal replies.

Thanks for the suggestions - and for the “how to” for capturing the entire matrix. I will try that shortly.

Perhaps see if this YT video assists you to change your Xfinity 2.4Ghz WiFi channel - set it to channel 1 for now, that’s if it isn’t set to that already.

https://youtu.be/_KARRmzLzJ4

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I created a PDF of the entire matrix. When I try to upload it here from my IPad, the file shows as greyed out. Apple says it is a Sonos issue, although I know that isn’t the case.

 

I created the PDF on my Mac and it is available there, but I can’t seem to get to the Sonos support forum on the Mac.

 

The PDF is even available on this IPad, but not when I try to retrieve it to post it here via the picture icon above and the browse files.

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I tried changing my Xfinity channel but was unable to get in. Comcast was unable to help over the phone and is sending a tech on Saturday.

 

Is there anything else I should seek help with from the Comcast tech? Maybe set up static iP addresses for all of the Sonos devices?

Don’t worry about the matrix, maybe show it to the tech person when s/he pops in as they might be able to suggest things to try when they see your Home setup.

Yes, I would ask him/her to kindly reserve all your Sonos products IP addresses in your routers DHCP reservation table and when they’ve finished sorting things out, ask them to backup/export your router settings/configuration, that’s if the router supports that feature. Then, if you ever have to factory reset the router at any point, you can quickly import the settings back to the configuration that the tech person thinks should work best for your current network.

Hope all gets sorted for you.👍

Userlevel 7
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This forum software isn’t very fancy so a lot of stuff that works elsewhere isn’t supported here.

Try uploading (the paperclip icon) your PDF as a file, it should show a note below the post that it had been uploaded. Folks (or you) should be able to view it from your post.

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Comcast tech came and I was able to log in to my router. Unfortunately, the option to control the 2.5 choice of manual or auto was greyed out and couldn’t be switched to manual. Also greyed out was the channel selection box. So no changes for this function/area could be implemented.

‘The tech called his supervisor. She was sympathetic and said she would escalate the situation to an engineer to see if a resolution could be implemented.

She said she had never encountered this scenario before. In listening to my goals, she offered one more potential fix: to get a “sub router” with its own IP address. And my Sonos products would feed off of this “sub router” (my term). If I am describing this potential fix correctly, is it worthwhile to pursue it? (Goal being to reduce interference and gain system stability.)

I’m surprised they are suggesting to use a different router in place of their own - not that much confidence in their own supplied product? At the very least they should help establish what channels are in use, so you then know which is the best SonosNet channel to use. Did they do anything to resolve the interference around the Front Bedroom Sonos One and any other relevant devices seen in your matrix?

I would let them escalate the matter and try to resolve it that way, as long as the system is usable at the moment and see what they can do to find a solution for you before switching to another router. It’s a matter for you, of course. I was hoping a ‘tech’-on-site would have been able to sort these things.

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Unless you can disable the WiFi in the primary router you won’t gain a lot with a second router.

Even better if your primary router offers “Bridge Mode” where it disables WiFi and routing and only uses the modem functions.

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I’ve made some progress with two added routers - one each on the upper and the lower floor.

The system is more stable now by far. The matrix shows the speakers handling any interference well.

Thanks for the helpful suggestions!

latest issue is with amps hooked to speakers. They work for a while and them the amp goes blank.

I’ve found a fairly good tech - the guy that installed the routers. I’ll see if he has ideas to get the amps stable, or I’ll be back here.

Happy Thanksgiving!

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