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Connect wired to top end speakers. Care to share your experience?

  • 15 February 2020
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31 replies

Forkys de la Suisse,

I don’t think that anyone on this thread so far can or will tell you which combination will sound “best” because we believe that only you know what sounds best to you. You may be better off joining an audiophile group where someone will tell you very explicitly which sounds better because [insert prejudice here].

The thing making Sonos get away with the high price setting is simple economics: a lack of competition in this market segment. 

SONOS wants to provide first class products and first class support. Somehow there must be enough revenue to enable this support. The high or low cost opinion is based on the attitude of the potential customer. Yesterday, I passed a $14.99 Bluetooth speaker hanging on a peg at a discount clothing store checkout. I can’t imagine the customer who might purchase this Bluetooth speaker would consider a SONOS product. SONOS players that were manufactured in 2005 are still in use and are supported. I can’t imagine that this $15 Bluetooth speaker will be viable in 15 years. SONOS is a whole house audio system. In this context, SONOS is inexpensive. Half a dozen SONOS rooms can be installed in a morning. Traditional whole house systems often require several days of prewire and a day or two of final installation. There is a cost associated with all of this mess.

Did you purchase your ARCAM because it was cheap? Why are you considering replacing your ARCAM? Is there a missing feature? Bad sound?

You have not been a member of this community very long. Long time members may have noticed that this past week SONOS assigned several more employees to support this community. These employees will provide better off hours and weekend support than was previously available. Prior to coming online these new moderators were trained for this function. There is a cost for this support. 

Thanks for all the input- albeit some of it is very technical … Anyway returning to my initial thought- the Amp. It is my understanding that one could wire the DynAudio speakers directly to the Amp - no need for the Arcam amplifier. Am i right? Doesn’t the Port offer the same feature? 

No it doesn’t - which is why I questioned your understanding of this point in my first contribution to this thread.  The Port has no amplification.  Your Dynaudio speakers have no amplification.  Therefore Port + Dynaudios = silence.

Ok. Then the big question, as far as I’m concerned is, when comparing 2 setups, a) AMP + Speakers to b) Port + Arcam + Speakers, can one expect with some degree of certainty that the sound of one is superior to the other or is it impossible to tell because of the decisive weight of the Arcam Amplifier/Dynaudio combination in the equation? 

I am not quite sure what you mean by the last comment. The difference between the two setups is the Arcam amp vs the amp in the Amp   Which is better? Who can say? Is there a 'better' or just a personal preference? I suspect you wouldn't hear much difference.

One way to find out would be to buy both the Port and Amp direct from Sonos and choose to keep one.

 

 

I don’t think that anyone on this thread so far can or will tell you which combination will sound “best” because we believe that only you know what sounds best to you.

 

There is one aspect to the comparative assessment of what sounds better that no one has spoken off here - and that is unless the two alternatives are delivering sound levels that are instrument level matched to within 0.1dB, the “louder sounds better” hard wiring in the human brain will dominate any assessment.

But this matching is also not easy to achieve at home, so perhaps the best way is to go by what sounds better to one’s ears and not rely on any other validation of that assessment, because that also is unlikely to have been achieved via such control of sound levels.

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Only reason I can see for going with a Port and amplifier combo would be to get more power than the Sonos Amp. By more power I’m thinking roughly 4X to make much of an audible difference.

The less efficient dB rating your speakers have the more the X in power needs to change to provide the same sound improvement.

Testing at home is a really random as so many factors are involved a true test is near to impossible and you just end up deciding the stuff you like best sounds best anyway.

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Thanks for all the input- albeit some of it is very technical … Anyway returning to my initial thought- the Amp. It is my understanding that one could wire the DynAudio speakers directly to the Amp - no need for the Arcam amplifier. Am i right? Doesn’t the Port offer the same feature? 

No it doesn’t - which is why I questioned your understanding of this point in my first contribution to this thread.  The Port has no amplification.  Your Dynaudio speakers have no amplification.  Therefore Port + Dynaudios = silence.

Ok. Then the big question, as far as I’m concerned is, when comparing 2 setups, a) AMP + Speakers to b) Port + Arcam + Speakers, can one expect with some degree of certainty that the sound of one is superior to the other or is it impossible to tell because of the decisive weight of the Arcam Amplifier/Dynaudio combination in the equation? 

I am not quite sure what you mean by the last comment. The difference between the two setups is the Arcam amp vs the amp in the Amp   Which is better? Who can say? Is there a 'better' or just a personal preference? I suspect you wouldn't hear much difference.

One way to find out would be to buy both the Port and Amp direct from Sonos and choose to keep one.

 

Is that a real option, returning one device after testing? 

Userlevel 1
Badge +3

Only reason I can see for going with a Port and amplifier combo would be to get more power than the Sonos Amp. By more power I’m thinking roughly 4X to make much of an audible difference.

The less efficient dB rating your speakers have the more the X in power needs to change to provide the same sound improvement.

Testing at home is a really random as so many factors are involved a true test is near to impossible and you just end up deciding the stuff you like best sounds best anyway.

Thx. Considering everything, I’d go for the favourably priced  Port, compared to the Amp, rather than replacing my Arcam Amplifier and making it idle.