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Echo Dot - Sonos as Default speakers


I have the Play One with Alexa which works amazing. I also have an Echo Dot in another room that works beautifully with my Sonos system. The only slightly annoying thing is that I have to tell my Echo Dot "Play Rock in the Living room". If I don't specifically say "in the living room" the dot plays the music (which is technically correct). Does anyone know if there is a way to change the default player/speaker so that I no longer have to specifically say the location of the speakers I want to use? In other words I would just say "Play Rock" and my Sonos speakers would kick on.

I can't seem to find anything specific to this question while searching the Alexa forums.
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Best answer by UKMedia 9 March 2018, 15:16

Hi



Nope, this is the difference between a Sonos One vs a Play:1 + Echo Dot combination. If you think about it, this is the logical way for Alexa to work; you are asking Alexa>Smart Home>Device 1(Echo Dot) to output music on Alexa>Smart Home>Device 2(Sonos Player)



This all may change when/if Sonos supports Alexa Groups but there is no time frame for this at present.
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Hi

Nope, this is the difference between a Sonos One vs a Play:1 + Echo Dot combination. If you think about it, this is the logical way for Alexa to work; you are asking Alexa>Smart Home>Device 1(Echo Dot) to output music on Alexa>Smart Home>Device 2(Sonos Player)

This all may change when/if Sonos supports Alexa Groups but there is no time frame for this at present.
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Sonos has said they want to be able to do this....its up to Amazon to allow it. Seems to be something being worked on.
This feature of assigning a a default sonos room or location for my Alexa devices would me amazing. Right now I am the only one that uses our sonos speakers because my wife never says "in the kitchen" afterwards.
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I'm not certain when this was added, but Alexa now allows you to set a "preferred speaker" for music playback in for a given group/room, and that includes Sonos devices. When setup, voice responses to normal Alexa interactions still come from the dot, but music is now automatically sent to the selected Sonos device. The result is exactly the behavior I was looking for and it works seamlessly.

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That is new. Amazon must have snuck it in recently
Userlevel 7
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I love when people complain about Sonos beinf slow when it is very obvious now they were waiting on amazon.
I love when people complain about Sonos beinf slow when it is very obvious now they were waiting on amazon.

Yup. As has been said all along, Amazon releasing their multi-room media API was the holdup.
This should get highlighted a little more as it's definitely a feature people have been holding out for.

It also looks like you can select multiple Sonos rooms when selecting preferred speaker. I wonder if this could be a way of creating a named group? I'm not at home to be able test this out.
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I've been testing the limitations of this new Alexa functionality. I've created a group of an Echo Dot and assigned a Sonos speaker as the default and it will output audio to the assigned Sonos speaker without including the name within the command.

I did get a bit excited when I saw that you could assign multiple Sonos devices as the default player(s). Thinking that this could be a way to output Audio to Everywhere without having players grouped within the Sonos App. Alas, I ungrouped all Sonos Rooms in the Sonos App but when selecting multiple Sonos devices only the last device selected in the Alexa App receives the Audio output. 😞
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-- update --
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-- nice update --
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Edit
I've been testing the limitations of this new Alexa functionality.

I wonder if you could help me?

Does this mean all music goes through the "Preferred Speaker", where all other audio comes out of the Dot speaker? I know this sounds like a ridiculous question, but I can't phrase it better because I'm so unfamiliar with the echo: what actually counts as music? If I play something from Spotify, obviously that's music... but what about a talk radio source, for example?

Also, can you have one Echo that plays through a Sonos, and another that plays through itself? The situation I'm thinking is an Echo in the living room that plays through the living room Sonos, and an Echo in my son's bedroom where he can play Lego Ninjago soundtracks without it coming out of the downstairs speakers.

Actually, that makes me think of something else - can the Echo be commanded to play music in the Sonos Library? Or is it restricted to streaming services like Spotify? Same question on playlists - can the Echo "find" both Spotify playlists and Sonos playlists?
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I think it is just when you utilize the music sources in the alexa - so that would be amazon music, spotify, etc. or default radio app too (see them all under Music section under Alexa settings)

If I ask it to play like a video though it comes out the Alexa speaker.

This is set by Alexa device - so you set the Living Room to play from the living room Sonos. Your son's bedroom echo wouldn't be associated with the living room echo so wouldn't play from the living room echo. If he had a sonos speaker in his room he could associate it with the echo in his room.

Alexa Echos can only find playlists from music services in Alexa app. I can not currently search for Sonos playlists.
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I've been testing the limitations of this new Alexa functionality.

I wonder if you could help me?

Does this mean all music goes through the "Preferred Speaker", where all other audio comes out of the Dot speaker? I know this sounds like a ridiculous question, but I can't phrase it better because I'm so unfamiliar with the echo: what actually counts as music? If I play something from Spotify, obviously that's music... but what about a talk radio source, for example?


Hi

The Amazon announcement states that Replies to voice commands will remain on the Echo Dot triggered but request for Music playback will be directed to the preferred speaker. I've just tested with BBC Radio 2 with the command 'Alexa, Play Radio 2' - this output on the Echo Dot, then 'Alexa, Play Radio 2 from TuneIn' and this output through my Play:5 which is set as the Preferred Speaker.

I've been testing the limitations of this new Alexa functionality.
Also, can you have one Echo that plays through a Sonos, and another that plays through itself? The situation I'm thinking is an Echo in the living room that plays through the living room Sonos, and an Echo in my son's bedroom where he can play Lego Ninjago soundtracks without it coming out of the downstairs speakers.


To set this up, you create a Group in the Alexa App and add a Alexa Device (Echo Dot) and the Sonos player as Devices within that Group then set the same Sonos player as the Preferred Speaker. No other Alexa devices are impacted unless you include them in an Alexa Group.

I've been testing the limitations of this new Alexa functionality.

I wonder if you could help me?

Does this mean all music goes through the "Preferred Speaker", where all other audio comes out of the Dot speaker? I know this sounds like a ridiculous question, but I can't phrase it better because I'm so unfamiliar with the echo: what actually counts as music? If I play something from Spotify, obviously that's music... but what about a talk radio source, for example?

Also, can you have one Echo that plays through a Sonos, and another that plays through itself? The situation I'm thinking is an Echo in the living room that plays through the living room Sonos, and an Echo in my son's bedroom where he can play Lego Ninjago soundtracks without it coming out of the downstairs speakers.

Actually, that makes me think of something else - can the Echo be commanded to play music in the Sonos Library? Or is it restricted to streaming services like Spotify? Same question on playlists - can the Echo "find" both Spotify playlists and Sonos playlists?


At this moment in time only Streaming services can be initiated via Voice Control, however once initiated via the Sonos App local music libraries can be control via Voice Control. (Pause, Resume, Next & Volume)
I've just got an Echo Dot and have paired it with 2 grouped Sonos Play:1 speakers and was hoping this option would become available. I'm probably missing something obvious here but I'm looking through the Alexa app and can't find the option to choose a 'preferred speaker'. How do you access it?
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Press the little house icon on the bottom bar. It's on the far right.
You should have each room already set up.
Click on room and add the alexa device in that room if not already there
Then preferred Music Speaker pick your sonos player from the list.
Press the little house icon on the bottom bar. It's on the far right.
You should have each room already set up.
Click on room and add the alexa device in that room if not already there
Then preferred Music Speaker pick your sonos player from the list.


I hadn't created a room so did that and now I can see the option. Will try it when I get home from work. Many thanks for the help.
I think it is just when you utilize the music sources in the alexa - so that would be amazon music, spotify, etc. or default radio app too (see them all under Music section under Alexa settings)
Ah, okay. Didn't realise the Echo had a "music" section... so that makes sense.

This is set by Alexa device - so you set the Living Room to play from the living room Sonos. Your son's bedroom echo wouldn't be associated with the living room echo so wouldn't play from the living room echo. If he had a sonos speaker in his room he could associate it with the echo in his room.
Okay, thanks.

Alexa Echos can only find playlists from music services in Alexa app. I can not currently search for Sonos playlists.
Ah, I think I've suddenly realised something. You aren't using Alexa to control the Sonos (like you say "Alexa, do X" and the Echo then says to the Sonos "You need to do X") - instead you're using Alexa to control the Echo which is simply using the Sonos speaker as an external audio output? If so, that all suddenly makes more sense to me.

But if that's the case, can you still control the audio from the Sonos hardware buttons (play/pause/volume) or from the Sonos app (next/prev/play/pause/volume) without confusing Alexa? I mean, can I start a playlist by asking Alexa, listen to track 1, skip track 2 on the Sonos app, listen to track 3, and ask Alexa to skip to next and get track 4? Or will Alexa think I'm still on track 2 and "skip" to track 3, or get lost completely?
I've just tested with BBC Radio 2 with the command 'Alexa, Play Radio 2' - this output on the Echo Dot, then 'Alexa, Play Radio 2 from TuneIn' and this output through my Play:5 which is set as the Preferred Speaker.
Hmm. Not sure I understand why it treats those differently, to be honest!

To set this up, you create a Group in the Alexa App and add a Alexa Device (Echo Dot) and the Sonos player as Devices within that Group then set the same Sonos player as the Preferred Speaker. No other Alexa devices are impacted unless you include them in an Alexa Group.
Brilliant, thanks.

At this moment in time only Streaming services can be initiated via Voice Control, however once initiated via the Sonos App local music libraries can be control via Voice Control. (Pause, Resume, Next & Volume)
I see, thanks.

Ah, I think I've suddenly realised something. You aren't using Alexa to control the Sonos (like you say "Alexa, do X" and the Echo then says to the Sonos "You need to do X") - instead you're using Alexa to control the Echo which is simply using the Sonos speaker as an external audio output? If so, that all suddenly makes more sense to me.


No, you're actually correct the first time. Alexa is just telling Sonos what to do, and Sonos takes over from there. However, Alexa will only pass on the music request to Sonos if it understands what you're asking for...so to speak. In that way, Amazon is limiting what music choices you can make to what Amazon supports, instead of all that Sonos supports.


But if that's the case, can you still control the audio from the Sonos hardware buttons (play/pause/volume) or from the Sonos app (next/prev/play/pause/volume) without confusing Alexa? I mean, can I start a playlist by asking Alexa, listen to track 1, skip track 2 on the Sonos app, listen to track 3, and ask Alexa to skip to next and get track 4? Or will Alexa think I'm still on track 2 and "skip" to track 3, or get lost completely?


All of that will work fine, essentially because Sonos is playing on it's own without Alexa being involved in the stream. Commands to increase volume, pause, resume, etc work because Alexa doesn't really need to know what Sonos is currently playing to work. That said, the interface is two way, so Alexa can know what the Sonos speaker is currently doing, including what is currently playing...even if what's playing isn't something supported by Alexa.
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Global 'ducking' still not fixed though, right?
Global 'ducking' is Amazon Echo-related only, so it's perhaps on Amazon to fix?
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Global 'ducking' is Amazon Echo-related only, so it's perhaps on Amazon to fix?
Probably, yes.

Earlier in this thread a couple of posters had asserted that ducking had been fixed. Those posts appear to have been edited, so I'm seeking to confirm that this issue is not in fact fixed.

Whether this problem resides with Amazon or with Sonos, it still creates a substantially degraded experience for multi-occupant households with multiple Sonos and Echo devices.
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