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Alexa and existing Sonos speakers.

  • 5 October 2017
  • 26 replies
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Exactly what do I need to buy to get my existing Play Ones and Fives to work with Alex?. At present I have no Alexa device. Will the new Sonos One have Alexa built in or will it need an external source?
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Best answer by Bob_100 5 October 2017, 13:25

You need either an Echo device from Amazon (I'd suggest a Dot) or the new Sonos One with Alexa built in.
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26 replies

You need either an Echo device from Amazon (I'd suggest a Dot) or the new Sonos One with Alexa built in.
You need an Alexa enabled device, an Echo, Echo Dot, or Sonos One are the most logical because they will respond to spoken words without physical prompting.
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Yes. The new Sonos:1 WILL have Alexa built in - she lives in the top of the speaker and you have to let her out every once in a while for exercise.

(That's last bits rubbish by the way but the first bit is straight up)
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I'm leaning toward a Alexa enabled thermostat for my living room to control Sonos. That way I don't need a Dot in my living room. I already have a complete Sonos surround system in that room. This way I get Sonos and Thermostat control without another device plugged in and sitting around.
I'm leaning toward a Alexa enabled thermostat for my living room to control Sonos. That way I don't need a Dot in my living room. I already have a complete Sonos surround system in that room. This way I get Sonos and Thermostat control without another device plugged in and sitting around.

Cool. I didn't even know those existed. Is your thermostat located in a good location to hear you? Which model are you going with? So will your thermostat be able to play music?
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Cool. I didn't even know those existed. Is your thermostat located in a good location to hear you? Which model are you going with? So will your thermostat be able to play music?[/quote]

If all goes as planned I will be able to control Sonos with Alexa through the Thermostat. I'm not interested in listening to music on my thermostat. I'm leaning towards the Ecobee4 but not sure if it supports the Alexa/Sonos skills for Sonos. Time will tell.
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Cool. I didn't even know those existed. Is your thermostat located in a good location to hear you? Which model are you going with? So will your thermostat be able to play music?[/quote]

If all goes as planned I will be able to control Sonos with Alexa through the Thermostat. I'm not interested in listening to music on my thermostat. I'm leaning towards the Ecobee4 but not sure if it supports the Alexa/Sonos skills for Sonos.Thermostat is on wall in living room. Time will tell.
We're you successful in connecting the ecobee with your Sonos?
Wondering the same. Just bought the ONE for my husband for xmas and I don't need anything else bc Alexa is built in, correct? Thanks!🆒
Yes. Alexa is built into the Sonos One.
Just double checking, thanks so much for your reply.
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But the Alexa in the Sonos One does not give the full Alexa service, e.g. it doesn't support drop-in.
Thanks Bear. Forgive me, but what is drop in? Are you suggesting that I actually purchase an alexa?? 😞
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Thanks Bear. Forgive me, but what is drop in? Are you suggesting that I actually purchase an alexa?? :(

Drop in is the name given my Amazon for the intercom function of their Dots/Echo/Echo Plus. Effectively if you have more than one of these devices then you can use them as an intercom, allowing you to talk from one to another. Handy if your downstairs with your Dot, and want to quickly talk to someone who is upstairs, or in another room.

It was for this reason that I didn't buy a Sonos One with built in Alexa, instead I bought the cheaper Sonos Play 1 (which appears to be the exact same speaker but without Alexa) and a Dot. I use the Dot to communicate with the Sonos Play 1. Works a treat.

More info here....https://en.community.sonos.com/amazon-alexa-and-sonos-229102/alexa-drop-in-on-sonos-one-6793167
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Does anyone know anything about future plans for the Play:5. A friend told me the 2nd gen ones have microphones built in for future voice services. If that's the case why haven't the Play 5s been enabled for Alexa yet?
@thebear... so you would suggest the echo dot and Sonos 1? I bought 2 Ones, one for our bedroom and another for downstairs. So if I’m in my room and i say “Alexa, play Spotify” it won’t without a dot? Do i now need 2 dots? :o

I also plan on hooking our 5 up to a new Audio Technica record player, which is also an Xmas gift. I bought the connecting cable and I’m hoping what they told me was correct, that the play 5 will connect and play the vinyl.... ?? Any words of wisdom?
Does anyone know anything about future plans for the Play:5. A friend told me the 2nd gen ones have microphones built in for future voice services. If that's the case why haven't the Play 5s been enabled for Alexa yet?

Your friend is incorrect. The mics on the Play:5 are not a far field array, and thus cannot be used for voice control.
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@thebear... so you would suggest the echo dot and Sonos 1? I bought 2 Ones, one for our bedroom and another for downstairs. So if I’m in my room and i say “Alexa, play Spotify” it won’t without a dot? Do i now need 2 dots? :o

No, you don't need two Dots with your Sonos One speakers. The Sonos One's come with Alexa built in, so thats all you need. Yours will work just fine. My point was that Alexa in the Sonos Ones is missing a couple of functions that are unique to the Amazon Dot/Echo, such as drop in. But other than that, your Sonos One speakers will work perfectly.


I also plan on hooking our 5 up to a new Audio Technica record player, which is also an Xmas gift. I bought the connecting cable and I’m hoping what they told me was correct, that the play 5 will connect and play the vinyl.... ?? Any words of wisdom?

Sorry, I don't have any knowledge on connecting devices by cable.
@thebear Thank you! I sincerely appreciate you taking the time to answer my questions~ Happy holidays! 🙂
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Does anyone know anything about future plans for the Play:5. A friend told me the 2nd gen ones have microphones built in for future voice services. If that's the case why haven't the Play 5s been enabled for Alexa yet?

Your friend is incorrect. The mics on the Play:5 are not a far field array, and thus cannot be used for voice control.


OK thanks, well if that's the case what are the mics in the 5 for?
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I also plan on hooking our 5 up to a new Audio Technica record player, which is also an Xmas gift. I bought the connecting cable and I’m hoping what they told me was correct, that the play 5 will connect and play the vinyl.... ?? Any words of wisdom?

As far as I can see that should work so long as the Audio Technica has a built in preamp (check the instructions). If it doesn't you'll need a preamp connected between the turntable and the Play 5. You should be able to get a battery powered preamp quite cheaply from somewhere like Maplin if you are in the UK and probably Radio Shack in the US.

Sorry, I don't have any knowledge on connecting devices by cable.[/quote]
[quote=Intelebop]

OK thanks, well if that's the case what are the mics in the 5 for?


They were meant to be used for Trueplay like tuning, but it was found that a stationary mic was not suitable and the mic in a mobile device was needed. As such, they have never been activated and serve no purpose at this time.
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Hi - I've currently got a sonos Play 5 in my kitchen (and other zones in my house by virtue of Connect:AMP's). I am looking to get Alexa controlled speaker in my kitchen. I'm thinking of EITHER

1 - getting an Echo:Dot and connecting that via the line in into my exisitng Play 5; OR

2. replacing the Play 5 with a Sonos ONE.

Seems to me that 1 is cheaper and probably gives better sound given the better speakers in the Play 5.

Can anyone advise if there is any technical reason (perhaps because of the fully intergrated nature of Alexa into the Sonos ONe why that would be the better choice?

Thanks in advance!
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I have a friend using an Echo Dot into a pair of play 5s through line-in into one of the Play 5s. It works fine but I'd say the sound quality isn't quite as good as when the play 5 is playing a music source independently. I did write to Sonos Support about whether there's going to be a Sonos three and Sonos Five but, as suspected, they are not giving anything away at this time. Hopefully we'll see another Alexa enabled speaker not too far into the New Year.
I'm leaning toward a Alexa enabled thermostat for my living room to control Sonos. That way I don't need a Dot in my living room. I already have a complete Sonos surround system in that room. This way I get Sonos and Thermostat control without another device plugged in and sitting around.