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Amazon Music HD Available on Sonos

  • 17 September 2019
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The Amazon Music app casts to Sonos using Alexa, and Alexa can only stream to Sonos speakers in SD.

Do you know if this limitation is specific to Sonos or inherent to Alexa Cast?

The Amazon Music app casts to Sonos using Alexa, and Alexa can only stream to Sonos speakers in SD.
Do you know if this limitation is specific to Sonos or inherent to Alexa Cast?

See https://en.community.sonos.com/announcements-228985/amazon-music-hd-available-on-sonos-6830070?postid=16361736
I might be misunderstanding the point here but I can stream to my sonos beam via airplay from the Amazon app on my iPhone and that's definitely not SD quality.. It sounds the same as when I use the sonos app, which also streams in a higher bitrate than SD.
Far more valuable, in my book, would be a music service that guarantees that all its streams will play at the same sound levels for a given level of volume control setting on my kit.

For that offering, I would definitely pay a premium over the usual bag of streaming services suspects that are merely cosmetic variations of essentially the same theme.

It is so irritating to have to reach for the volume control so often in a playlist. Even playlists from my NAS.
I might be misunderstanding the point here but I can stream to my sonos beam via airplay from the Amazon app on my iPhone and that's definitely not SD quality.. It sounds the same as when I use the sonos app, which also streams in a higher bitrate than SD.
Airplay is Apple only, and requires the phone to be in the loop. It's to be expected that the local Amazon app would send whatever it receives to Sonos, including in HD.

The discussion here has been about Alexa-initiated streams and by casting from the Amazon app. These go direct to the player, and are currently in SD.
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The Amazon Music app casts to Sonos using Alexa, and Alexa can only stream to Sonos speakers in SD.
Do you know if this limitation is specific to Sonos or inherent to Alexa Cast?
See https://en.community.sonos.com/announcements-228985/amazon-music-hd-available-on-sonos-6830070?postid=16361736


Ahh, I see, HD casting will be available in the future.

Just FYI...I have been playing with casting to my Marantz processor using Heos. According to quality indicator in the Amazon Music app, casting to the Marantz drops the quality level - HD becomes SD and UHD becomes HD. Not sure why this happens. However, there is no way to tell the actual file type, bitrate and sampling frequency with this casting.
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How to check on my sonos connect the quality of stream.
is there any info on my ipad app?
How to check on my sonos connect the quality of stream.
is there any info on my ipad app?

Not for Amazon, no.
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How to check on my sonos connect the quality of stream.
is there any info on my ipad app?
Not for Amazon, no.

And how can i see it with a different service like spotify, tidal,... ?


How to check on my sonos connect the quality of stream.
is there any info on my ipad app?
Not for Amazon, no.
And how can i see it with a different service like spotify, tidal,... ?

I don't believe you can with those either. (This thread is about Amazon.) Deezer does however display the format.
It is interesting to see how many here want to know the bitstream rate to decide how good the sound is. Classic examples of psychoacoustics, and also a part of today's world/marketing that thrives on keeping people dissatisfied to drive GDP growth.

There was a time when I refused to think of listening to lossless CD rips on a local NAS over WiFi as opposed to through my exotic brand name interconnects for the sound degradation that would bring, even when that mode would have been a lot more convenient as well as less messy. Fortunately, I escaped from that well and never looked back.

Having recently brought in music videos via a TV into my Sonos environment, it is striking how poor is the video quality of timeless performances, from even just a couple of decades back, of jazz/blues/rock to the extent that a less able performer of today, recorded and seen in HD mode, seems a better watch. Thankfully, there was not much wrong with the sound quality of well recorded music of even five or more decades ago, so all one has to do there is turn the TV off, and enjoy what is the better music.
Is there no way of using the Amazon app itself like I can with Spotify as it appears the sonos app is not showing hd on the track list
Is there no way of using the Amazon app itself like I can with Spotify as it appears the sonos app is not showing hd on the track list
Yes you can, but at present casting from the Amazon Music app to Sonos is in SD whatever the app may say. Evidently this is because it piggy-backs on the Alexa delivery mechanism.
Hi getjams, the team is working on bringing Amazon Unlimited HD streams to Sonos using voice control with Alexa, more to come soon and we’ll share here when it’s available.

Amazon just announced the Echo Studio, which supports HD, presumably via Alexa. So, probably not too far in the future that the Alexa ecosystem will be updated to support HD streaming via voice or casting.
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There was a time when I refused to think of listening to lossless CD rips on a local NAS over WiFi as opposed to through my exotic brand name interconnects for the sound degradation that would bring, even when that mode would have been a lot more convenient as well as less messy. Fortunately, I escaped from that well and never looked back..


i thought long about posting here as I know this is an argument that gets people fired up.

i accept that in your case Kumar, you have experienced the argument from both sides and have made the decision that is right for you. I totally respect that.

But as with many things, the situation can be more nuanced than it first seems.

I have a significant visual impairment. It is said many people hone one sense when others are impaired.

I know when I first ripped my CDs lossy, I was in a few cases disappointed how some music sounded ‘wrong’. I wouldn’t honestly say they sounded to my ears worse, just , well -wrong. Admittedly this was with good headphones and with very familiar modern recordings. I tried lossless, and it sounded right to me, at least compared to what I was familiar with. Again I would be lying if I used the word better, it just sounded right.

I never heard any difference on Sonos gear, however, but I was convinced enough to re-rip in a lossless format. You know, just in case 😋

We all hear what we hear and it is impossible to accurately convey to others what that is.

The only analogy I can give is of an evening I often hear people describe the millions of stars in the night sky. I can’t see one, but I don’t deny what others see, just because I can’t see it.

So so it is - as I say - more nuanced. But as with HD UHD or 8k TV, we all have to decide what makes a difference for us. There is no right or wrong in any of it.

all the best
Andrew

I have a significant visual impairment. It is said many people hone one sense when others are impaired.

I know when I first ripped my CDs lossy, I was in a few cases disappointed how some music sounded ‘wrong’.

I never heard any difference on Sonos gear, however, but I was convinced enough to re-rip in a lossless format. You know, just in case 😋
There is no right or wrong in any of it.

I have never spend much time with headphones - quality ones - so I accept that someone with more sensitive ears will hear more of the difference between lossy and lossless using these; when I refer to audible differences, I refer to those heard on speakers in a typical domestic listening environment. That said, it also depends on what bit rate lossy was in your instance, and what codec was used.

And ripping and storing in lossless format IS the way to go, particularly now that memory drives are so cheap.

Of course there is no right or wrong about these subjective experiences - as long as they are held out to be subjective ones, and therefore agreed to be susceptible to subjective failings that all humans are hard wired to be susceptible too. So when we point out that there are no differences that can be heard in blind tests, that is all we point out to those making equipment or music listening assessments - to not get fooled into thinking that there is much science behind the subjective opinions posted and being relied on. There are far too many of those around, that claim to be an absolute truth.
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And ripping and storing in lossless format IS the way to go, particularly now that memory drives are so cheap.


I agree, When drives are cheap I don’t see any reason not to rip at CD quality. It’s a shame to charge more for CD quality streaming in the age of broadband as it’s still not straining most people’s bandwith, but I can see while many won’t pay the few extra pounds when the audio difference is inaudible (to most) 😋

andrew
Ryan, when is this service going to be available in Australia? I recently got a SONOS MOVE, and to my surprise I cannot add AMAZON MUSIC HD to the SONOS APP! Any idea why?? However I can stream it from the amazon app, but defeats the point of having a SONOS control centre.
Thanks
Luis
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Hi Luis, I don't have a timetable to share, but I'll make sure to add your interest on getting Amazon Music HD in Australia on Sonos.
Maybe, I am wrong here, but according to Amazon Music I am getting 24 bit/48khz through Sonos. I am doing this by using Airplay which I send to my Apple TV and then out to my speakers.
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I don’t think Sonos supports anything higher that 16 bit / 44.4 KHz. Years ago when I was trying to figure out how to rip my CD collection for playback, Sonos, posted that they (at the time) did not support higher bitrate playback. That was for my ZP90 (renamed to Sonos Connect, for you newer to Sonos folks).

Admittedly, that could have changed, but i can’t find anywhere in their website that it has.

It would definitely be nice to have some real data rather than having to go with empirical evidence. I upgraded and I believe that HD running from the Sonos app sounds better to me than using airplay from the Amazon Music app. But that could all be just what my senses believe. It would be great to know that the data supports what I hear, it would make it a lot easier to pay the higher price for the service. LOL

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