Alexa voice volume [hundreds of user complaining and no developers listening]

  • 27 December 2022
  • 7 replies
  • 715 views

Userlevel 2

It is impossible to use Alexa on the Sonos One because the Alexa voice volume is linked to the general volume of the device. If you listen to music at 50% volume, Alexa will answer you by shouting (the neighbors will hear it too). If you listen to music at 10% volume, Alexa will answer so softly that you must lean your ear against your Sonos to hear it.

The problem is so evident that I had to buy two Amazon Echoes to use Alexa in the same rooms where I already have Sonos Ones. Yet, even though hundreds of people before me have already raised it, Sonos doesn't give a damn and, for years, has continued to sell Sonos Ones at a higher price because of their supposed Alexa compatibility.


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7 replies

Userlevel 7

All in-built Voice assistants are tied to the volume of the Sonos device. 

There is no “supposed” Alexa compatibility issue with the One.

You have confirmed this yourself. Alexa responded on your Ones.

Just because you are unhappy with the volume of the assistant, does not mean the Alexa integration is not a working feature of the One.

 

Userlevel 2

@Mr. T As I already wrote, hundreds of users have already complained about that. So, maybe you can consider the possibility that just because you are happy with the volume of the assistant, does not mean the Alexa integration is a properly working feature of the One.

Userlevel 7

@Mr. T As I already wrote, hundreds of users have already complained about that. So, maybe you can consider the possibility that just because you are happy with the volume of the assistant, does not mean the Alexa integration is a properly working feature of the One.

The Alexa integration is working as intended.

I’m sure a mod will mark your thread as a feature request.

The Alexa assistant volume-level sounds fine on my Sonos devices for each chosen speaker audio level I use with my Sonos speakers. So certainly not everyone is complaining about this feature.

I don’t mind that the Alexa volume changes with the speaker volume.

If Alexa is sooooo loud that the neighbours are able to hear it, then the music must also be playing too loud for the neighbours aswell …as Alexa output volume is never louder than the speaker volume.

The only issue I can think of, is if someone has been playing the music very loud in the day and perhaps forgets to turn down the device/speaker volume and then asks Alexa something late at night, or during the middle of the night. That would be too loud for the time of day perhaps. However…. 

In my own use-case, I just use a 3rd-party App called Soro to ensure my device volumes are scheduled and not set too loud after 8pm, each evening, in just a few of the rooms where the Wife & I might ask Alexa a question, or set an alarm etc.

Others here in the community often set a silent alarm to set their device volume level, I see, but both will achieve the same outcome and that is it ensures Alexa is never too loud and that our neighbours are never disturbed.

There is always the option to use Alexa whisper mode too, I guess, but I sometimes forget about that feature, when setting an alarm at bedtime. 

Userlevel 2

Hello @Ken_Griffiths, thanks for your reply. As I said to @Mr. T, I’m happy that you are happy with the volume of Alexa on your Sonos devices.

However, please remember that your taste is not necessarily the same as anyone else's, and the same applies to how you use Sonos devices. I listen to a lot of ambient, classical, and jazz music. These genres of music can have very low loudness levels compared to rock music, for example. As a result, it is not uncommon for me to listen to music at 30 or 40 percent volume without neighbors being able to hear anything.

Regarding whether it is a good thing that Alexa's volume changes along with the music, I would like to point out that no one changes the volume of their cell phone ringtone, oven buzzer, or intercom just because they are listening to music. For the same reason, I don't find it apparent why Alexa should change its volume if I am watching a movie or listening to music. That is even more true since, when I activate Alexa, the volume of what I am already listening to is automatically reduced on the Sonos devices that are active at that time.

In my opinion, Alexa should always respond at a set volume regardless of what the overall volume of the Sonos is. Sometimes I listen to music while dining at a very low volume, but I want to be able to hear Alexa's responses. Other times I watch movies at high volume (because their original audio is low), and I don't want Alexa to bring down the building if I ask her something.

 

 

Userlevel 2

Here is a comparison between the loudness level of these two songs:

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DyDfgMOUjCI

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=452nsCCzIJs

 

 

@GabrieleLS,

I was not disagreeing, but was merely just mentioning that I’m quite happy with how the Alexa volume currently alters (automatically) with the volume-out from the speaker.

I guess some software development decisions may not appeal to everyone (you are never going to please all the people, all the time etc.) and it’s maybe a case that Sonos (and/or Amazon) developers might look to alter it, that’s if enough folk request it and I’ve no issue with that.

I just wanted to express that it currently works okay for my own use-case. A few users have mentioned having a fixed volume for Alexa in the past, so it’s a known feature request, albeit not mentioned that often in more recent times.

Anyhow, I’m fairly sure Sonos Staff will add your comments here to the existing request.