Question

How do I play audio from my iMac through Sonos?

  • 30 November 2013
  • 53 replies
  • 67758 views

Userlevel 1
How do I play audio (e.g. soundtracks for movies and TV in iTunes) or stream internet content (e.g. netflx or iPlayer) from my iMac through my Sonos system? I've tried a phono lead out from the headphone socket on the Mac into a Sonos bridge "line in", but the sound was poor and very quiet. My music library is on my iMac, and that works fine.

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53 replies

Userlevel 2
Hello Jonathan,

For now, Sonos is not able to play the system-sound of your computer wirelessly. We call that functionality Virtual Line In, and it is something we may be working
on in the future. You can voice your support by +1 this idea.

Apart from that, the only method to have the PC sound play through Sonos is to use the analog-cable with the Line-In of your PLAY:5/CONNECT/CONNECT:AMP.

In regards to the volume-level of the Line-In connection, I recommend that you check the Line-In settings within the Room Settings of your Sonos app. There you can select
the signal level of the Line-In source.

Regards,

Bjorn L.
Hello Jonathan,

For now, Sonos is not able to play the system-sound of your computer wirelessly. We call that functionality Virtual Line In, and it is something we may be working
on in the future. You can voice your support by +1 this idea.

Apart from that, the only method to have the PC sound play through Sonos is to use the analog-cable with the Line-In of your PLAY:5/CONNECT/CONNECT:AMP.

In regards to the volume-level of the Line-In connection, I recommend that you check the Line-In settings within the Room Settings of your Sonos app. There you can select
the signal level of the Line-In source.

Regards,

Bjorn L.

I agree with others who have posted… disappointing and frustrating. I just invested in a multi room Sonos system, none of them are Play 5's, and now just finding out I can't run laptop, iMac or TV sound through any of the Sonos speakers I just purchased. Even a line-in from Play 1 or 3 would have been logical and appreciated.
Hello Jonathan,

For now, Sonos is not able to play the system-sound of your computer wirelessly. We call that functionality Virtual Line In, and it is something we may be working
on in the future. You can voice your support by +1 this idea.

Apart from that, the only method to have the PC sound play through Sonos is to use the analog-cable with the Line-In of your PLAY:5/CONNECT/CONNECT:AMP.

In regards to the volume-level of the Line-In connection, I recommend that you check the Line-In settings within the Room Settings of your Sonos app. There you can select
the signal level of the Line-In source.

Regards,

Bjorn L.

You can get an Apple Airport Express for $99. This is used to share out Line Out's, extend WiIfi signals, and share Printers all wirelessly. Plug that Line out into your Line-In of your Play:5/Connect/Connect-AMP. Then you can use AirpLay via iTunes directly to stream your music. If you want to stream system sound from your iMac then use in addition an app called Airfoil which transmits ANY sound & video from your iMac using Airplay technology directly to your peripherals connected to your Airport Express.
Userlevel 1
Hi Vincent.

I DID  work this out! Trouble is, it was so long ago I'm now not sure how I did it! I am sure that it involved conversations with Sonos support.

I can tell you that it's definitely using a lineout from the headphone socket to a Sonos bridge! Here is the other thing I'd try right away – go to Sonos > Manage > Service Settings. Under "Room Settings" set "Line-Out Level to variable".

 if that doesn't work, let me know and I'll see what else I can come up with.
SONOAIR. YOU ARE  WELCOME
Epic fail if I can't use my speakers for wireless sound through my iMac. I watch movies on my iMac in the lounge room, yet I have to use the iMac speakers? errrrrr! I should not have to have this signal go back to my soundbar via a hardline to do this! NOT VERY INNOVATIVE AT ALL are we Sonos?
How poor is this.
People have their music library on CD or on their PC/Mac and you can't play it through your Sonos system, how poor is that.
I have just bought the first part of a Sonos system that will now be returned because I have my music library, >1,000 CD's on my iMac.
Epic fail !!!!!
How poor is this.
People have their music library on CD or on their PC/Mac and you can't play it through your Sonos system, how poor is that.
I have just bought the first part of a Sonos system that will now be returned because I have my music library, >1,000 CD's on my iMac.
Epic fail !!!!!


It's not that poor at all, considering you most certainly CAN play your music library from your PC/Mac. All you have to do is point Sonos to the share that houses your music on the PC/Mac. I don't know how you got the idea it wasn't possible, but you are 100% incorrect.

What you cannot do is play the system sound from your PC/Mac (the beeps, boops, video sound, etc) directly to your Sonos speakers. For that you need a Sonos device with a Line-in connection and a cable.
hi - im also at a loss to play my music library from my mac - either it cannot connect or the mac format not working - can't grab the error messages fast enough. what steps does one take to point sonos to the share that houses my music? my whole library is sitting on my hard drive.


How poor is this.
People have their music library on CD or on their PC/Mac and you can't play it through your Sonos system, how poor is that.
I have just bought the first part of a Sonos system that will now be returned because I have my music library, >1,000 CD's on my iMac.
Epic fail !!!!!


It's not that poor at all, considering you most certainly CAN play your music library from your PC/Mac. All you have to do is point Sonos to the share that houses your music on the PC/Mac. I don't know how you got the idea it wasn't possible, but you are 100% incorrect.

What you cannot do is play the system sound from your PC/Mac (the beeps, boops, video sound, etc) directly to your Sonos speakers. For that you need a Sonos device with a Line-in connection and a cable.
ok posted too soon - followed other post on how to set up path but now stuck on my mac with the smb password - no idea what that is and cannot reset it. any ideas there? also off to mac help now. should be easier than this.

hi - im also at a loss to play my music library from my mac - either it cannot connect or the mac format not working - can't grab the error messages fast enough. what steps does one take to point sonos to the share that houses my music? my whole library is sitting on my hard drive.


How poor is this.
People have their music library on CD or on their PC/Mac and you can't play it through your Sonos system, how poor is that.
I have just bought the first part of a Sonos system that will now be returned because I have my music library, >1,000 CD's on my iMac.
Epic fail !!!!!


It's not that poor at all, considering you most certainly CAN play your music library from your PC/Mac. All you have to do is point Sonos to the share that houses your music on the PC/Mac. I don't know how you got the idea it wasn't possible, but you are 100% incorrect.

What you cannot do is play the system sound from your PC/Mac (the beeps, boops, video sound, etc) directly to your Sonos speakers. For that you need a Sonos device with a Line-in connection and a cable.
beam the macbook to your tv via apple tv and play your music. Boom !
Cheers
If directly saved to your Apple MacBook i.e not cloud or streaming
1. Download/ Open Sonos app.
2. Select Preferences from Sonos drop down
3. Music Library option
4. On Folder option hit + sign
5. 3 options will appear to select where your music is stored. "in my music folder" suits most needs but you can select networked drive if you want to get technical
6. on the next screen you will be asked to enter your MacBook System Administrator password.
7. Once complete "Music library" will appear in Sonos user interface.
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I want to be able to connect external speakers to my iMac. It has a headphone jack which will apparently function as a headphone jack or a line in connection - but not both at the same time. I have 2 Thunderbolt and 4 USB 3.0 ports on my machine. It would seem that Sonos could work that out that line in from my CONNECT could come in on one of those ports with an adapter and some software magic in the controller to product sound like a Windows machine with a sound card line in.
Hello Jonathan,

For now, Sonos is not able to play the system-sound of your computer wirelessly. We call that functionality Virtual Line In, and it is something we may be working
on in the future. You can voice your support by +1 this idea.

Apart from that, the only method to have the PC sound play through Sonos is to use the analog-cable with the Line-In of your PLAY:5/CONNECT/CONNECT:AMP.

In regards to the volume-level of the Line-In connection, I recommend that you check the Line-In settings within the Room Settings of your Sonos app. There you can select
the signal level of the Line-In source.

Regards,

Bjorn L.

I agree with others who have posted… disappointing and frustrating. I just invested in a multi room Sonos system, none of them are Play 5's, and now just finding out I can't run laptop, iMac or TV sound through any of the Sonos speakers I just purchased. Even a line-in from Play 1 or 3 would have been logical and appreciated.


I must agree. Totally disappointing you can´t play music on the songs systems via bluetooth from Mac or PC. This seems so logical. I totally agree... Also disappointing you have to play music through the songs app and can´t use other players :/

I think it is also sad you can't create groups for certain rooms and sonos players f.e. This is a feature I am desperately waiting for 😕
Userlevel 7
Badge +21
Hello Jonathan,

For now, Sonos is not able to play the system-sound of your computer wirelessly. We call that functionality Virtual Line In, and it is something we may be working
on in the future. You can voice your support by +1 this idea.

Apart from that, the only method to have the PC sound play through Sonos is to use the analog-cable with the Line-In of your PLAY:5/CONNECT/CONNECT:AMP.

In regards to the volume-level of the Line-In connection, I recommend that you check the Line-In settings within the Room Settings of your Sonos app. There you can select
the signal level of the Line-In source.

Regards,

Bjorn L.

I agree with others who have posted… disappointing and frustrating. I just invested in a multi room Sonos system, none of them are Play 5's, and now just finding out I can't run laptop, iMac or TV sound through any of the Sonos speakers I just purchased. Even a line-in from Play 1 or 3 would have been logical and appreciated.


I must agree. Totally disappointing you can´t play music on the songs systems via bluetooth from Mac or PC. This seems so logical. I totally agree... Also disappointing you have to play music through the songs app and can´t use other players :/

I think it is also sad you can't create groups for certain rooms and sonos players f.e. This is a feature I am desperately waiting for :/


There are other products available for you if you wish to use the vastly inferior Bluetooth technologies.

As far as grouping room and players is concerned you are quite wrong in stating it's not possible - this is one of Sonos' unique selling points - speakers can be grouped and the music SYNCHRONISED perfectly around your house. It's marvellous and no other system works as well.
Agree with @Stuart_W wholeheartedly. How can you be "disappointed" that a product doesn't do something it is fundamentally not designed to do and has never claimed to do?

Sonos aren't stupid. They have undoubtedly considered Bluetooth, and for good reason rejected it (rubbish and outdated technology). They must have made a calculated decision not to put a ilne-in on the P:1 or P:3 (cost versus minimal effect on overall sales, probably).
Hi, ok I didn't know bluetooth was an outdated technology. So far I haven't had any Problems with bluetooth, but I guess I can unterstand that bluetooth is not the optimum for a multiroom sound system. Anyways I am disappointed there is no option to play my Macs music on my sonos play 1 speakers 😕
Is there any other way connecting my Mac with my sonos speakers or is the only way the Sonos Play 5 with the in line?
I just bought a Sonos playbar and a Play 3 ok ebay. Is it possible to use the playbar in order to play music from my Mac or are there any other possibilities?

When I ment groups I didn't actually mean groups. I know you can create groups, but what I ment was (maybe you could call it-> scenes). So for example: I have a Sonos Play 1 in my bedroom, Kitchen and bathroom. I would like to create a scene where I could just choose play in Kitchen and bathroom or Play in Kitchen and bedroom or play in all 3 rooms. I know this is possible but you can't configure this in the app and save them as individual scenes. Do you know what I mean? This would be really really Great.

Btw I am really happy with my Sonos speakers but there are some minor tweeks I wish were available 😉 thanks in advance.
Yes I get what you mean about the groups. I think quite a few people have asked about "permanent" groups like this and it would seem a nice feature. So it's on Sonos' radar but they never indicate in advance if these things are coming.

The Playbar doesn't really help with the Mac overall, but I think you can pair you YouTube on your Mac to YouTube on your TV (assuming that you have a Smart TV) and play videos that way wirelessly. Any audio available to your Playbar can be put through other speakers by grouping.

Or you could in theory wire your Mac to the TV (eg with HDMI) and get sound to your Sonos speakers that way, depending on the wired connections the Mac has (of which I have no idea). That may be rather unsatisfactory or impractical though.

Rumours persist, although with no solid evidence, that Sonos will introduce some sort of casting solution (e.g. Google Cast) that would give you something much more like what you are looking for. That does seem a logical development but only time will tell.
A further thought - just rereading your last post - you say that you cannot play your Mac music. I assume you mean your Mac audio output. You do know that you can play music files stored on your Mac through Sonos? You probably do, but just making sure.
A further thought - just rereading your last post - you say that you cannot play your Mac music. I assume you mean your Mac audio output. You do know that you can play music files stored on your Mac through Sonos? You probably do, but just making sure.

Hi John B, there seems lots of contradicting info on this, as a newbie, considering buying my first set up to then move to multi room, what do I need to start playing from my iMac to a Sonos speaker (I was thinking of a pair of Play 3's but thought I had to go for 5's to hard wire)?

Thanks
Ok so how do I play music from my macbook through my sonos speaker? The way I do it on my phone is just download the app but there's no sonos app for mac
The Mac Controller is available at the link below:

https://sonos.custhelp.com/app/answers/detail/a_id/2425?_ga=1.180250466.774090800.1454958331
Thanks!
So, I think what everyone is attempting to say is, we would like Sonos to provision their app to allow the PC/Mac computer to inject the sounds/music being heard on the computer into the Sonos system just as if if we're a radio station from I heart or accu radio.Yes I need this feature as well and I can't understand why it can't be incorporated by Sonos with a simple software/app update