Wireless Headphones & Sonos

  • 28 December 2015
  • 15 replies
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I realise this is a bit of an "old chestnut" topic, but thought my experience may be of interest to anyone going this route.
Had a rather nice Xmas present of Sennheiser RS 175 wireless phones.
These have a digital optical input (cable supplied) as well as the usual analog inputs. Wired this to my Sonos Connect optical output (the Connect is powering my conventional Hi Fi system)
The result is very pleasing, works a treat with Sonos. The sound quality is all I could wish for & the range seems more than adequate for our 3 bed house.

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15 replies

I wouldn't hold your breath for a Sonos wireless headphone. It's been asked about for years, and there appears to be no interest from Sonos. The strap line is after all "listen out loud".
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Thanks again Ratty. Though purchasing a Connect or ZP plus decent wireless headphones sounds expensive, my imagination tells me a SONOS wireless headphone (if/when available) set would be comparable in price.
Expensive option, but is it correct I could purchase a Connect and a Sennheiser RS175, or RS185, and be in business?
Absolutely, and you'd have the choice of analog or digital connection. (I use RS165 with a ZP80, but they only take analog.)

If you felt inclined you could pick up a ZP80 or ZP90 off eBay. They still hold their value but it would be cheaper than a new CONNECT.
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Thanks Ratty. Expensive option, but is it correct I could purchase a Connect and a Sennheiser RS175, or RS185, and be in business?
If I'm interpreting correctly the Sennheiser device can be plugged into the Analog sockets (red and black) on the Connect:Amp to receive the SONOS signal.
You got the Sennheisers correct, but not the CONNECT:AMP I'm afraid. The RCA jacks are inputs, not outputs.
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Follow-on to the OP's reference to Sennheiser RS 175 wireless headphones. I use a Connect:Amp to send music through a selector box (buttons pressed to play music thru outdoor speaker pair, or to a pair in my basement workshop, or both). If I'm interpreting correctly the Sennheiser device can be plugged into the Analog sockets (red and black) on the Connect:Amp to receive the SONOS signal. I'm in the market for a wireless headphone solution and this sounds interesting to me. If this scenario works, I assume I'd need to deselect the wired speakers while using the Sennheiser headphones? Anything else I should be considering?

Thanks
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Use an optical switch to selct the headphones when you want to use them.
Do you have an alternative recommendation on using wireless headphones with a Sonos solution?
It comes down to how sensitive you are to lip-sync errors with respect to the TV picture. (Personally I like to get the audio within ~10ms, so even PLAYBAR's 30ms delay I avoid by sending the audio directly to the PLAYBAR, bypassing the TV.)

Like all digital wireless headphones the Sennheisers add a small delay of their own, but I don't know offhand how much. The total delay through the CONNECT would therefore be more than 70ms, possibly of the order of 100ms.

Frankly, I think you should bypass the Sonos system for this situation. Wire the Sennheiser base unit directly to the TV or set-top box.
Thanks for the heads up Ratty.
Do you have an alternative recommendation on using wireless headphones with a Sonos solution?
(again thanks for the advice)
I have Playbar + Sub + two play 1 speakers. All is well except wife wants headphones for late night TV w/o disturbing the kids. I will purchase Sonos Connect + Sennheiser RS 175 and connect the headphones base via digital audio from the Connect. From reading the posts above, I believe that to be the best and correct approach, thank you.
Do bear in mind that a player grouped with the PLAYBAR doesn't play in sync for the TV input. The delay though the CONNECT will be of the order of 70ms.
Appreciate this thread as it exactly addresses my issue. I have Playbar + Sub + two play 1 speakers. All is well except wife wants headphones for late night TV w/o disturbing the kids. I will purchase Sonos Connect + Sennheiser RS 175 and connect the headphones base via digital audio from the Connect. From reading the posts above, I believe that to be the best and correct approach, thank you.
But what can I do without an expensive Connect? It must be possible to make a simple analog output on a Sonos 5 parallel to the amplifier. So you can hear the same music on both.
is it possible to play the music with the HiFi system by analog output and the headphones by optical cable in parallel?
Yes. All CONNECT outputs are always active, analog and digital. Note however that there's only a single volume control for all outputs.
thanks, as I'm looking as well for a workaround (hopefully until Sonos will finally offer a proper headphone solution) this seems like a feasible solution. A quick question: is it possible to play the music with the HiFi system by analog output and the headphones by optical cable in parallel?

thanks again!
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Should be useful to others looking for the same thing here. We appreciate you taking your time to share this Pete, many thanks.