Sonos needs to supply headphones or ways to hook up wireless headphones

  • 12 September 2015
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38 replies

Userlevel 7
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Getting a used Play:5 gen1 with headphone jack or a Connect are the only current options.

P.S. Not saying there shouldn't be better options that's just all we have as of now.
Since the playbar has its own amps, it should be an easy hack to wire one in. Anyone tried that?
1/ There are nine Class-D amplifiers, each EQ'd specifically for its driver. Care to pick two?
2/ Your warranty would be instantly invalidated.
Hi, I am missing feedback from Sonos on this topic.
What is THEIR solution to use a headphone through the Sonossystem?
Hi, I am missing feedback from Sonos on this topic.
What is THEIR solution to use a headphone through the Sonossystem?

You won't get any feedback, other than a "we'll pass on the request". Sonos never comment on future plans.

As for Sonos' current headphone solution, there isn't one as such. In fact the only explicit headphone outlet was withdrawn from the PLAY:5 at Gen2.
I don't get it. It's clearly the missing link in the Sonossystem. To be clear: I'm a huge fan of Sonos. The only thing I'm missing is a sub (still saving...:( ) and... a wireless headphone solution. (doesn't need to be a Sonos headphone altough it would be nice.)
Some customers use headphones, and the obvious solution is to connect one's choice of wireless headphone transmitter to a CONNECT (or ZP90/ZP80). For small wired headphones/earphones one might be able to get away with connecting direct to the CONNECT's Line Outs, but any serious 'phones would require a headphone amp to provide sufficient power.

Sonos' marketing message is all about listening 'out loud', so I somehow doubt they'd consider doing their own headphones. It would require a rather different skill set than for a speaker, and the potential market opportunity could be small compared with that for, say, a new model of speaker.
I chatted with Sonos regarding the use of wireless headphones, but their official answer is that Sonos doesn't support them. However, thanks to my son's suggestion and this support community, I purchased a Sonos Connect and Sennheiser RS 175 RF Wireless Headphone System, and they work perfectly when connected to each other with the optical cable that comes with the headphones. The amazing thing is how the TV mute works. I Group the Connect and the Playbar so that the headphones AND the Playbar are playing the sound from the TV. I then hit the Mute button on the TV remote and the Playbar goes silent......but the headphones still work and I can adjust the volume using the Sonos app on my iPhone. The Playbar is connected via optical cable to my TV, while the Connect is plugged into the wall on the other side of the room connected to the headphones that sit on a base next to the Connect. That's the perfect solution for letting me listen to the TV when my wife goes to bed and needs silence to go to sleep. I'm really not sure why Sonos told me that their equipment doesn't support wireless headphones, but perhaps not all brands/models will work with the Connect setup for some reason.
I'm really not sure why Sonos told me that their equipment doesn't support wireless headphones, but perhaps not all brands/models will work with the Connect setup for some reason.
If 'supporting' wireless headphones meant sorting out their problems -- and potential interaction with the Sonos system -- then I'm not surprised that Sonos won't officially do so. There are some makes of wireless headphone which can be unruly cohabitants of the 2.4GHz band, spraying noise everywhere and comprehensively hosing the Sonos system.

If the Sennheisers work for you, all well and good. They do raise the ambient RF noise level somewhat for nearby Sonos players but so long as yours are coping you'll be fine.
Userlevel 2
This is how I am using wireless headphones with my Sonos...

My system consists of a Playbar, a Sub and two Play 1s. I don't need a $350 Connect, just a $20 splitter.

I have a Tivo Roamio, Xbox, Apple TV and BluRay player all hooked up via digital optical into 4:2 Toslink switcher.

A single digital optical out goes to the playbar. This switcher configuration allows 5.1 from the playbar. I have used this setup without issue for the last year. I recently had a need for headphone support. So I added a 1:3 Toslink splitter.

Instead of the playbar, the single output from the switcher now is the input for the 1:3 splitter and one output goes digital audio to the playbar and a second output goes digital audio into the Sennheiser RS 175 RF wireless headphone. When I want to use the headphones I simply mute or volume down the Sonos and put on the headphones. (The Sennheisers don't like the Dolby Digital output from the Roamio so I have to change the Roamio's output to PCM then all is golden) Hope this is helpful.
I am sure it will be helpful. But unless I misunderstand (perfectly possible) you are using the headphones "with" your Sonos system in the sense of "alongside" your Sonos system. You aren't actually listening to any Sonos music sources through the headphones are you?
I had the same observation. I think you have described a simple and effective way to use headphones to listen to your TV while your Playbar and other speakers are still connected to your TV (although they may be muted), but it doesn't sound like you would be able to listen to music, podcasts, radio stations, etc. that can play through your Sonos system.....unless there is something I am overlooking.
Userlevel 2
I'm sorry, yes, you guys are correct. I posted that because I thought folks were looking for ways to output source material to headphones being as the playbar lacks headphone jacks or audio out. I wasn't aware the actual problem was getting Sonos app material headphone support. I am a Tidal user. When listening to Tidal with phones I always use the standalone Tidal app. Are you saying people are wanting to access services like Tidal and Spotify thru the Sonos app with headphones rather than their individual standalone apps? I am kind of confused now.
I think the original problem was trying to connect headphones to the Sonos system because, if you contact Sonos, the "official" position of the company is that their equipment does not support headphones. The use of headphones with the TV is one potential application for headphones, but your use of Tidal or Spotify is another potential reason to have your headphones connected to Sonos. As you point out with the detailed description of how you hooked up your system, there is a less expensive way to use headphones with your TV, even if your TV optical output is plugged into a Playbar - you don't need to go through the Sonos system with the Playbar.
As someone else pointed out (and the Sonos folks told me when I contacted them), it's possible that certain headphones may work with the Sonos Connect, but other headphones may not due to interference or some other reason. It appears that a few folks in this community have gotten their Sennheiser RS 175 RF headphones to work with the Sonos Connect, so at least that's an option that has been shown to function correctly, and easily. All it takes is money. 8^)