Cassette deck and TV to AMP, for playback via Arc or Beam (+/- Sub)

  • 7 December 2020
  • 5 replies

I have an analog cassette deck I’d like to play through a single Sonos Arc speaker (+/- Sub). I’d also like to be able to play my TV sound through the Arc as well. 

I know I can connect the TV direct to Arc via HDMI or optical out, but should I utilize the AMP versus PORT to mediate the connection from the analog cassette deck to the Sonos Arc? Is there an advantage or reason to connect the TV to AMP rather than directly to ARC (not an option with PORT I presume as PORT doesn’t have HDMI input). I presume the other advantage to AMP over PORT would be being able to in the future wirelessly connect to Sonos architectural speakers?

basically just trying to verify that AMP and PORT would play wirelessly to Sonos Arc, and if using AMP, whether it’s better to route TV into the AMP along with the cassette deck, or just patch the TV directly into Arc. 



5 replies

Userlevel 7

Hi @JFish 

Short answer …

Connect your TV to your Arc and your Cassette deck to a Port. It’s the economically sound approach. 

I’d only consider the Amp if knew I’d repurpose the Arc to another TV in the very short term and use the Amp to drive in wall or outboard speakers with the current TV.

The Sonos Amp, and/or the Sonos Port would wirelessly group with you Arc. You would want to maintain the Arc’s ARC connection to your TV (yes, I’m not fond of Sonos’ naming team). 

The issue you may not be aware of is that the Dolby Digital or Atmos translation is done by the device that is wired directly to the TV. None of the three font channels can be sent out of that device. So, if you were to wire the HDMI ARC cable to the TV, rather than the Arc, you’d lose any capability to have anything other than stereo from the Arc, not a good thing. 

I guess it took me five minutes to type that out, AjTrek’s appropriate answer wasn’t there when I started. ;)


got it - don’t hook up TV to Amp because will lose the front channels - and therefore prob can just use Port and save some $$$.

Thanks to both of you for quick replies.

Any advantage to connecting TV to Sonos Arc via HDMI-ARC cable vs optical audio cable, or since both digital really just dealers choice? 

thanks again - super helpful replies...


Userlevel 7

Hi @JFish 

Connecting Arc via optical negates any possibility of Dolby Atmos and may negate DD5.1 unless your TV can pass DD5.1 over optical. You’d possibly wind up with a very expensive stereo sound bar.

Edit: Using the Amp you would not lose the Front Channels. You would still have front left and right. The center channel would be created by a blending  of the left/right speakers often called a Phantom center. 
The Amp however is only capable of DD5.1 over HDMI.