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Introducing Sonos Port, Brilliant Sound Connected

  • 5 September 2019
  • 97 replies
  • 7308 views
Introducing Sonos Port, Brilliant Sound Connected

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There are reasons why 24/192 (and even wider words and higher rates) has advantages in the studio.

Have you come across any peer reviewed studies proving that we need more than 16/44.1 to distribute the audio to consumers?
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I would like to know when are sonos going to turn round and say that the connect can no longer be used on this system as it is now outdated and will not support the new software....which with all these new speakers, amps and now the Port that have been introduced just lately, I don't think it will be that long down the road.
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Sonos have not done so with the ZP80, ZP100 or more recently, the Play 3, so why would we expect them to do this with the Connect:AMP and Connect?
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I would like to know when are sonos going to turn round and say that the connect can no longer be used on this system as it is now outdated and will not support the new software....which with all these new speakers, amps and now the Port that have been introduced just lately, I don't think it will be that long down the road.

Given that's it's predecessor, the ZP80 I believe it was, is still supported, I think we're at least a few years away before the Connect is no longer supported.
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So after going over the specs.... no built in pre-amp?

Not much of an upgrade, especially seeing how Airplay 2 isn't a feature I need... or a 12v trigger.
It has sort of a Pre-Amp in the sense you can do a physical analog input and switch it to streaming using the app. So it has two sources that it can switch between (or hundreds if you consider each service a different source). It then has analog out that could be plugged into a power amp. Sonos has internal volume control so it checks the boxes to me.

It isn't a significant upgrade if you don't need Airplay 2 or the 12v Trigger assuming the DAC isn't a huge improvement.

@buzz I haven't come across a peer reviewed article on this I can think of. With most other competitors (B&W, BlueSound, KEF (kinda), and Chromecast enabled) allowing 24/96 at least I think higer rates is a trend. Tidal, Qobuz, and Deezer offer the rates streaming now. I can hear some subtle differences on certain MQA albums on Tidal vs the HIFI stream (Tame Impala Currents comes to mind). Most of the MQA albums I don't hear any difference however.
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It has sort of a Pre-Amp


No, it doesn't.

You cannot plug a phono turntable into the Port and get a line level signal.
The terms phono preamps and preamps are different. You’re right that it doesn’t have phono preamp.
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The terms phono preamps and preamps are different. You’re right that it doesn’t have phono preamp.

My apologies, I forgot a word.
Most of the MQA albums I don't hear any difference however.

SONOS cannot take advantage of any potential MQA benefit.

There can be dramatic differences in results, depending on how the session master was processed along the way. Modern retail releases go through a “sound good box” that the producer feels increases sales. Mostly this is compression. If the listener is in a noisy environment listening through earbuds, compression is very helpful, and sales increase. Each producer has a formula. Compression is not welcome when listening through good equipment in a quiet room.

It is interesting to compare a Mobile Fidelity release of an Album with the regular retail release of the same session. Also, look for vintage regular release of the same session and compare with a recent release. The differences can be dramatic and none of them fall into the “high res” bin. An interesting comparison, if you can find them, is to listen to the vintage British, Japanese, and US, LP releases, then the Mobile Fidelity CD and LP releases of Pink Floyd’s Dark side of the Moon. You’ll need a high end turntable for this. In some cases it will be difficult to satisfy yourself that a release was spawned from the same session tape.
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Really bad that the optical out has gone. My current Connect is connected to AVM ADM active speakers, which have two digital inputs, both of them optical.
Meaning if my 10 year old Connect fails, the Port will be no option as replacement (I’m not going to use optical/coaxial converters, I want a clean setup).


I’m in the same boat. I have three Connects all of them outputting over optical to powered speakers; two AVI ADM9s and one to a Yamaha Soundbar.

The good thing about Sonos is that old products remain supported for a very long time, the ZP80 (precursor to the SP100/Connect) is still supported isn’t it?

My slight worry is that the current product line up is totally different from when I first bought my Connects and Connect:Amps and given it is a totally new product lineup will the old products cease to be supported. That would be a shame.
I’m in the same boat. I have three Connects all of them outputting over optical to powered speakers; two AVI ADM9s and one to a Yamaha Soundbar.
There are of course inexpensive S/PDIF coax-to-optical converters available. Indeed I bought one many years ago to feed ADM9s from .... an AVI CD player. Such a converter doesn't need to be expensive: all it does is translate one form of media signalling to another; it doesn't even need to change the bit encoding pattern.

The good thing about Sonos is that old products remain supported for a very long time, the ZP80 (precursor to the SP100/Connect) is still supported isn’t it?

ZP80 is certainly still supported.

My slight worry is that the current product line up is totally different from when I first bought my Connects and Connect:Amps and given it is a totally new product lineup will the old products cease to be supported. That would be a shame.

ZP100 is still supported, some 14 years after its release.
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There are of course inexpensive S/PDIF coax-to-optical converters available.

Indeed, but they shouldn't be required, plus it's yet another thing that requires a power supply. It's an inexplicable omission. Same goes for the removal of the controls: I have Connects on two of my desks, and I use the controls frequently, but that facility is gone with the Port.

Neither of these features would have been expensive to include relative to the £400 price tag, nor are they in any way an inconvenience if one doesn't want them. Hard to understand the choice ... perhaps the relevant product manager has an installer-only focus.
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Do we have the Sonos understanding of 'richer sound' or is this just marketing guff? More interestingly, can the new box pass through to the Coax Out files sampled above 48/16? Not asking for Sonos-wide, 32-component synchronised distribution of such bitrates but the ability to hand these files on to an external DAC would be good in a device set for some years of service in this fast-moving tech market.

Perhaps the 'updated DAC' and updated circuitry will allow greater things in the future.
This is the most important question for me too. Does this still only support up to 16bit, or does it add hi-res?


Sonos is about the ecosystem. If your library has hi-Rez files, it wouldn’t work to have them streamable to the Port but not to other zones.
What an omission dropping optical out, surely to include it would have cost next to nothing! I have a connect feeding a chord m-scaler via optical which is recommended as optical is electrically isolated. Jitter is dealt with completely with the scaler.

I’ve been waiting for a new ‘connect’ for ages hoping it would return to bit perfect like the old ones. But instead we get a product with less connectivity & no mention of whether it’s bit perfect or not.

I’ll be keeping my £400 I think.
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I would like to know when are sonos going to turn round and say that the connect can no longer be used on this system as it is now outdated and will not support the new software....which with all these new speakers, amps and now the Port that have been introduced just lately, I don't think it will be that long down the road.
When that day comes I will be replaceing in my 5 connect for Bluesound Nodes. There in no comparison between this under achieving Sonos Port and the Bluesound Product.

I am very disappointed at Sonos attempt as a music server.

I can't understand how any designer can put in a 12V trigger to directly control an amplifier without the option of variable volume control buttons on the box. Crazy

Could you not have made these buttons non functioning when you pick fixed volume option as an option.

I am speechless as the lack of for thought Sonos has put into this product especially since users have been making suggestions for years on what a replacement to the connect should have.

No High res support even when using direct connect Ethernet.

Sonos may not see the requirement for High Res support but 95% of the industry are building there product to at least make this an option its customers.

Again I cant believe Sonos released this product.

Ah the slow migration away from Sonos Product for me is inevitable.
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When that day comes I will be replaceing in my 5 connect for Bluesound Nodes. There in no comparison between this under achieving Sonos Port and the Bluesound Product.


There is currently a lawsuit against Bluesound for stealing Sonos technology. It appears to be similar to the lawsuit Sonos won against Denon. Not sure if you're aware, but thought it might be useful information for your decision.
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So did anyone get a Port today? First impressions? Despite the issues raised, I’m thinking of getting one to have sonos on my Cambridge Audio amp (possibly through a DAC I already have) and speakers, and to get vinyl onto my sonos ones in other rooms. How is the Port? Any sync issues? Cheers
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I'm considering one to replace my oldest ZP-80 but I'm waiting to see how the Optical issue sorts out as without a working optical option my whole setup is screwed.
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So did anyone get a Port today? First impressions? Despite the issues raised, I’m thinking of getting one to have sonos on my Cambridge Audio amp (possibly through a DAC I already have) and speakers, and to get vinyl onto my sonos ones in other rooms. How is the Port? Any sync issues? Cheers

Sonos online chat said that there should not be sync issues as long as Port and Ones are grouped. Would a DAC between Port and CA integrated amp introduce any delay?

So did anyone get a Port today? First impressions? Despite the issues raised, I’m thinking of getting one to have sonos on my Cambridge Audio amp (possibly through a DAC I already have) and speakers, and to get vinyl onto my sonos ones in other rooms. How is the Port? Any sync issues? CheersSonos online chat said that there should not be sync issues as long as Port and Ones are grouped. Would a DAC between Port and CA integrated amp introduce any delay?

Not as a general rule. DA or AD conversion is virtually instantaneous.
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Still looking for reviews of the Port, but can't find anything online since they shipped. Anyone got one?

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