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In-Ceiling Speakers paired with Sonos Arc + Sub


Hi,

I am new to Sonos, but looking to incorporate a number of Sonos products in my home as I complete a renovation.  I am working with an AV installer, but I have a couple questions, which I cannot find clear answers for and so I’m looking for some help.

In the living room, I will be using a Sonos Arc + Sonos Sub + Sonos Amp/in-ceiling speakers for the rear surrounds. My installer is recommending that I use Monitor Audio C265 speakers as the in-ceiling speakers instead of the Sonos in-ceiling speakers, as he feels that they are a better speaker for the price point.  Here are my quesitons:

  1. If I use non-Sonos in-ceiling speakers (connected to Sonos Amp) for my rear channel in the 5.1 setup, obviously I will lose truplay calibration for the in-ceiling speakers.  However, will I also lose the ability to trueplay tune the Arc + Sub (since the non-Sonos in-ceiling speakers would be connected to that particular set up)?  
  1. What does the trueplay calibration do that I cannot do by manually adjusting the bass, treble, mid range and the volume level for each channel?  How important is this feature?
  1. Does anyone have experience using non-Sonos ceiling speakers in a set up like this?  Would anyone recommend an alternative in-ceiling speaker that may enhance the set up?  Or would the Sonos in-ceiling speaker be recommended due to the ability to truplay tune it?  (I recognize I’m asking a Sonos forum, but looking for any objective opinions).

Thanks for your help!

 

 

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Best answer by James L. 6 April 2021, 10:04

Hi @BP2021, welcome to the community!

 

I’ll answer your questions in the same format, so it’s easy to follow :slight_smile:

 

  1. You can still run Trueplay Tuning on your entire surround setup even if you don’t have Sonance Architectural speakers attached to the rear Amp.
     
  2. Trueplay covers a suite of technologies that optimize the Sound Quality or Sound Reproduction Parameters of our speakers in response to their specific environment, setup & local conditions & playback situation. This class of technologies is often referred to as “room calibration”. These things cannot be adjusted solely by raising or lowering the EQ sliders. Trueplay uses microphone measurements to: 
    - Correct for spectral defects caused by reflections or boundary loading
    - Time-align all loudspeakers in a Home Theater setup for one central listening position
     
  3. I’m afraid I have no experience with this so I’ll leave it open for other community members to chime in :smile: Though referring back to my first answer, you can still run Trueplay on a surround system with an Amp + 3rd party speakers attached for rear surround duties.

 

Hope that helps!

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Hi James, thank you again for your help.  Thank you for confirming the ability to trueplay tune in the 5.1 setup.  That makes sense and, through my prior research, I must have been confused about the difference between connecting non-Sonos speakers to the amp as a standalone room vs. part of a 5.1 set up with the Arc.  Thank you for clarifying this!  I’m glad a reached out to the forum.  

I’m afraid I have no experience with this so I’ll leave it open for other community members to chime in :smile: Though referring back to my first answer, you can still run Trueplay on a surround system with an Amp + 3rd party speakers attached for rear surround duties.

 

In general though, the quality of the rear surround speakers is the least important aspect of the home theatre setup.  You don’t want to get junk, but you aren’t going to gain much by using more high end speakers.  I would think your Monitors are more than up for the task, and you could probably get speakers for half the cost and not really notice much difference.

Hi James and Danny - thank you both for your replies!  That is very helpful.

James - in regards to point number 1, I don’t mean to question your expertise, but are you certain about this (i.e., that it is possible to trueplay tune the 5.1 set-up when using NON-Sonos Architectual speakers connected to the Sonos amp)?  I have no experience with Sonos, but have spent countless hours researching the topic as best I can, and everything I have read indicates that the option to Tureplay tune is “greyed out” / unavailable when non-Sonos speakers are attached to the amp as part of the set-up.  Do you have first-hand experience with this sort of set-up?  I certainly hope you are correct as that would alleviate my concern entirely.

Danny - thank you for your suggestion as well.  While I agree with you completely, the room has 11’ ceilings and the speakers will be placed approximately 12’-15’ apart from one another, so I do want a decent quality speaker that can fill the space (actually I was also considering the Monitor Audio C265-FX bipole/dipole for better sound dispersion).  I will also be using the 5.1 set-up for music.  Given the scale of the room and how I’ll be using the speaker, do you still feel it may make sense to go with a lower quality speaker?  Again, I have no prior experience with in-ceiling speakers.

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Hi @BP2021, welcome to the community!

 

I’ll answer your questions in the same format, so it’s easy to follow :slight_smile:

 

  1. You can still run Trueplay Tuning on your entire surround setup even if you don’t have Sonance Architectural speakers attached to the rear Amp.
     
  2. Trueplay covers a suite of technologies that optimize the Sound Quality or Sound Reproduction Parameters of our speakers in response to their specific environment, setup & local conditions & playback situation. This class of technologies is often referred to as “room calibration”. These things cannot be adjusted solely by raising or lowering the EQ sliders. Trueplay uses microphone measurements to: 
    - Correct for spectral defects caused by reflections or boundary loading
    - Time-align all loudspeakers in a Home Theater setup for one central listening position
     
  3. I’m afraid I have no experience with this so I’ll leave it open for other community members to chime in :smile: Though referring back to my first answer, you can still run Trueplay on a surround system with an Amp + 3rd party speakers attached for rear surround duties.

 

Hope that helps!

Userlevel 5
Badge +11

Hi James and Danny - thank you both for your replies!  That is very helpful.

James - in regards to point number 1, I don’t mean to question your expertise, but are you certain about this (i.e., that it is possible to trueplay tune the 5.1 set-up when using NON-Sonos Architectual speakers connected to the Sonos amp)?  I have no experience with Sonos, but have spent countless hours researching the topic as best I can, and everything I have read indicates that the option to Tureplay tune is “greyed out” / unavailable when non-Sonos speakers are attached to the amp as part of the set-up.  Do you have first-hand experience with this sort of set-up?  I certainly hope you are correct as that would alleviate my concern entirely.

No problem, it’s good to question things that don’t sound correct! I’m confident that you will be able to run Trueplay tuning on a 5.1 setup with an Amp as rears even with non-Sonos Architectural speakers attached. The situation you’re mentioning with the option being greyed out only applies when the Amp is not part of a surround setup. If the Amp is in its own room (i.e. not performing rear sound duties) then yes, you will need to have Sonos Architectural speakers attached. And yes, I do have first-hand experience of this and is something I’ve done in our test lab before :relaxed:

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