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It's 2016! Make PlayBar Gen 2 for DTS / Fix Aux for Play 5 GEN 2

  • 7 February 2016
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I know, it's another DTS thread. Sonos, I have used your products over many years. I am very impressed and right now, you are the Apple of Speakers when it comes to terms of quality and sound. I own 4 x P1s, 2 x P3, Sub + 2 x Gen 2 Play 5's and the very ... very... sad Playbar.

I have read many forums over the years and I have seen the anguish between many customers. I have never really commented because my patience was long and lasting... assuming one day you would care about this one point... but you are selling a locked eco-system that has the capability to drive customers mad. As I stated, you are the Apple of Speakers... but I feel like at times, there is a Steve Jobs at your company that is saying "no" to the bigger iPhone and watching customers endure the madness. What I am getting at is that it's 2016 and there are two things that are driving me mad (it's been a slow build up).

1. The new play 5's... the GEN 2s... some genius decided that the AUX ports are disabled when paired as a 5x1 theater system. For the first time, I was like... hey... I can use apple airplay (airport express) with my SONOS. Nope, I have two expensive speakers that when I use them as a theater system, the AUX ports do not work. So I sent an email and you thought it was a good idea... just a good idea... something that should have been standard from release. It's actually a main reason why I bought them and pushed over the play 3's. I can have upgraded speakers and use the AUX port when needed. When I disconnect them from the theater system, the AUX port shows back up... how convenient.

2. The DTS issue. I understand that over time, this may have not seemed like a big deal. You have to understand everything is moving to 1080p - 2160p and 4k. Audio is moving towards that direction also. I have implemented solutions where the audio splits so I can get 5.1 with the soundbar... but there needs to be some announcement in regards to a solution (and I respect the current play bar cannot handle it). Maybe the solution is a GEN2 speaker. Me personally, I would pay $999+ if you have a new sound bar that could accept hi-def connections... just as you created the GEN2 Play 5's.

Anyways, I can no longer defend SONOS. I am getting mad. If you know your going to create a locked eco-system and have consumers invest in an expensive theater system... you should listen to this one part. You see endless threads on it. Your right... I can just walk away, but you had me invest into an eco-system and you sold something that was only partially true. I know your response team reads this and there is a complicated process to make products. This is why Samsung and other companies can never match you... but a company that offers consumers a high-def system for twice the price.. I would be willing to toss every speaker on eBay and switch. My friends laugh at the SONOS system that pushes only... STEREO... unless there is a work around.

As of now, there is no worry because no one can match your quality... yet. Please create a GEN2 play bar... I bet people will pay even more... but in the end... your products are always worth it and that's why I would purchase it. Fix the DTS weakness (and please fire the engineers or quality control team who thought the AUX ports being disabled for the new GEN2's when used as a theater system - joking... but it's like selling a TESLA that requires a manual crank to start the car).

I mean well and write this because I care about the organization and I'm not here to randomly complain. Do something... than state what we already know.
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Best answer by tiago 15 February 2016, 00:24

Well I guess every passionate SONOS user will agree with your demands! I was very frustrated to find out that the AUX is disabled when PLAY:5 Gen 2 is added as surround, I’ve made a thread here and got some explanation (https://en.community.sonos.com/home-theater-228993/it-possible-to-use-the-line-on-a-home-theater-setup-6735262). What I managed to do is that I had another PLAY:5 Gen 2 on other room I used its AUX port and I can select in what room I want to play the AUX port, it woked for me this way, but you need an extra speaker 😕.

About DTS is the only thing that keeps me from being 100% happy with my SONOS system. I have a lot of DTS content and my tv passes through DTS, thank god that it also converts to PCM so I don’t get “no sound”, but its stereo 😕.

I tend to believe that SONOS is working on a new playbar with DTS support, if not they would be left behind by competition. It would be also a good idea to make a new connect, or something, so we could use for example 3xSONOS PLAY:5s as Center, Right, Left and 2xSONOS Play:1s as Surround speakers or any other combination.

Well, we can just hope that we invested our money on the correct system and that they will handle DTS with time. A statement that SONOS is working on it would be nice, but as I’ve read before they do not comment on future products or features.

Thanks for your post!

+1 for your requests!
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56 replies

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Yep my play 5s will be up for sale soon, Moved to a Yamaha receiver and music cast, 5.1 all the formats I need from all the sources I need. :)
Bye Sonos
My wife just bought us a Sonos 5.1 system. I really want to like it. We lived in Santa Barbara for years, and know quite a few Sonos employees/execs, so we want to support it. But with the lack of DTS support and HDMI inputs, I just can't do it. Sorry Sonos, but you've lost our business. Sonos' position on DTS and HDMI is completely contradictory to their mission/value statement. The future is being able to integrate high quality home theater with a full home experience. In my opinion, Sonos is missing the boat on a huge market segment. After a ton of research, WiSA seems to be the answer... looking at Axiim, and in my opinion, the extra $800 or so is worth it, and certainly more future-proof vs. Sonos.
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I made peace with this issue (TOSLINK on PlayBar only, can only use Sonos speakers or CONNECT:AMP as surrounds, no 7.1 or Dolby Atmos support, etc...) and what I've come to is that in my main viewing room, I have a PlayBar (connected via TOSLINK) to the flat panel, a Sonos SUB for sub stuff and a CONNECT:AMP to drive a pair of rear speakers and all this controlled via a Logitech Harmony Elite remote control. This is a "good enough/easy to use" audio and remote control system. I also have a 7.1 receiver that is fed the HDMI from an HDMI extender (one output goes to the panel via a CAT6 extender and that extender has an HDMI loop output that provides essentially a duplicate of the HDMI output port that is on the far end by the panel, I use this loop output to feed my 7.1 receiver). All HDMI switching is done with a 5x1 HDMI switcher. Now when my wife or kids want to watch something, the Sonos audio system is a piece of cake, it all just works well enough. When I (or we) want to do serious watching with serious sound, I have my 7.1 receiver drive the speakers, using a relay control to disconnect the rear surrounds form the CONNECT:AMP and connect them to the receiver, and the receiver also drives an 18" Velodyne subwoofer for real bass. So I basically have to have two distinct audio systems in the room to handle the simple/family friendly case (Sonos does that) and to cater to serious watchers/listeners. I've given up trying to coerce Sonos into doing stuff it wasn't designed to do, and for 90% of what I use it for, it's perfectly adequate and a great whole house audio system.
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Can't believe that new Soundbase has been announced without support for HDMI and DTS etc. SONOS need to get their act together over this as I can't justify dumping my separate surround sound set up without this functionality even though I use SONOS extensively elsewhere.

It's an insult. This was the last straw and now selling everything. Google home along with true multicasting around the house and talking to a speaker is great. Jamming now!


Great! I'm happy for you. Enjoy your interactions on a different support/community forum.
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Can't believe that new Soundbase has been announced without support for HDMI and DTS etc. SONOS need to get their act together over this as I can't justify dumping my separate surround sound set up without this functionality even though I use SONOS extensively elsewhere.

It's an insult. This was the last straw and now selling everything. Google home along with true multicasting around the house and talking to a speaker is great. Jamming now!
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Well, we can hold out some hope for the next device they release. I've got too much invested in Sonos devices to just leave because I'm upset (which I'm not). Honestly, the system works well the way it is. Sure, I wouldn't mind more, but it's not like it's performing any differently today than it was yesterday.

But sure, if you were to offer me the job of CEO at Sonos, I'd be happy to evaluate direction. But, I suspect that the current folks have been doing that for a long time, and based their decisions on what the true marketplace is looking for. My perception is that the folks who tend to post on these boards are the 1%, and not necessarily representative of the entire marketplace, particularly of those that Sonos may be going after.


Just dumped everythign on ebay. Google connect is now the thing. I love it!
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I just dumped all of my Sonos speakers, embraced google home along with spotify, picked up 4 google homes, new sony HT-9 speakers (whatever the model) and I'm loving it all. No more entrapment nightmares through sonos!
Well, we can hold out some hope for the next device they release. I've got too much invested in Sonos devices to just leave because I'm upset (which I'm not). Honestly, the system works well the way it is. Sure, I wouldn't mind more, but it's not like it's performing any differently today than it was yesterday.

But sure, if you were to offer me the job of CEO at Sonos, I'd be happy to evaluate direction. But, I suspect that the current folks have been doing that for a long time, and based their decisions on what the true marketplace is looking for. My perception is that the folks who tend to post on these boards are the 1%, and not necessarily representative of the entire marketplace, particularly of those that Sonos may be going after.
Can't believe that new Soundbase has been announced without support for HDMI and DTS etc. SONOS need to get their act together over this as I can't justify dumping my separate surround sound set up without this functionality even though I use SONOS extensively elsewhere.
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I do have a question.

What's the licensing cost for HDMI? Is the cost significantly more than TOSLINK, or are both zero at this point?

And of course, that goes with:

What's the licensing cost for DTS versus Dolby Digital? Is there an increased amount of processing power that is required to do the decoding?

In my wild imagination, there probably is, and this would cause a company like SONOS to be careful about when they want to upgrade their hardware. Granted, for most of us on these boards, the difference is probably a few dollars/pounds/francs, etc, but if I were making the decision as a Product Manager for SONOS, I'd be looking extremely hard at the demographic of who are the majority of buyers. I wouldn't be looking too hard at the outliers (those of us who post here on these boards). It's much the same in the Gaming space that I work in. I pay less attention to the vocal minority (but not none, for heaven's sake) and more to the larger average consumer, and why they purchase/use the product.

I'm willing to face the fact that what SONOS is in business to make money, and make decisions about their coding and hardware resources that don't necessarily align with my personal wants or desires. Sure, life would be better if they'd just listen to me, and do what I said, but honestly, I'm constantly amused at the posts here that say "this is simple, just do it", without (seemingly) realizing that there are obviously limited resources at SONOS, and their priority is likely the next big feature. I'm pretty sure that currently is the Voice feature that's been discussed, but I'm not an insider. This is the way every company I've ever worked for functions. Some portion of the resources are set aside for current issues, and another portion for future efforts.

That being said, I'd be delighted to pony up for two new PlayBars that have HDMI inputs, and did DTS decoding. But I don't think my $1500 isn't going to sway SONOS if 90% of their user base doesn't feel the need for it, and might balk at the initial purchase price if it were 5% higher than it is to cover those additional fees. So, I'm happy that people keep mentioning it here, and hope that at some point in time it becomes an issue that SONOS can devote some effort/time/money (all the same thing) to. Who knows, maybe they already are?

Which also leads into the "We won't talk about future roadmaps for software updates". An intelligent, albeit frustrating stance. There's been many a time where I've been in a development cycle on software and have had an issue that caused the intended release date to slip. Given how the majority of people react to that kind of thing, it does not surprise me in the least that they prefer not to get roasted because of unexpected issues. It's ultimately easier to get roasted for the one policy of not publishing a roadmap than get lambasted for slipping a timeline on feature after promised feature. Sure, it's painful on our side, but I certainly get it from their side.

Sorry, I've had this thought in my mind for quite a while while perusing these boards on a daily basis, looking at both the large number of posts of people who can't do a simple search, or even look at the topics presented in front of them, as well as the incredibly kind and thoughtful members who make a sincere and intelligent effort to assist folks who are having issues, with a substantial amount of success. And of course, I'd never be able to post these thoughts in any of the boards I've been "responsible" for in my line of work, either, so it's nice to get them off of my chest.

And if anyone does have knowledge about those licensing costs, or where I could find out about them, I'd actually be quite interested.


Agree with your analysis of development cost versus return but surely there are enough people, going by the posters on the many forums, that the I am sure small development costs, would be returned if they made a stand alone converter for atmos, DTS etc to dd5.1 so we can use our very expensive Sonos systems instead of jumping to Bose, Sony, Yamaha etc. As to those development costs if you can get a bluray player for £40-50 that does the conversion I am sure it wouldn't cost much more to bring such a device to market.
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..... Personally I would like to see them create a SUPER CONNECT box that actually will allow 7.1 audio directing to 7 different regular Sonos Plays.....


I totally love this! This could be a genius product addition. Connect:TV. Ability to decode all current audio formats ATMOS, DTS, DD+, etc from HDMI in, includes an Optical in, The the ability to build 5Ghz audio connections to up to 8 products for 7.1 audio. Allows wide front speaker separation for those that want that ... Could allow the current Playbar to take the front three channels it handles today if desired to deliver augmentation to the current PlayBar, but also not make them obsolete.

This is brilliant.... and it would seem entirely doable....

Hey Sonos... 🆒
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Well I to love Sonos but I think sometimes my vision is too narrow on when it comes to what I am using it for. .. For me I think Sonos is resting on past lorals and fans. Don't get me wrong I love their stuff dispite the price increase which is because i live in Canada and the exchange sucks. But I also don't like all the things that I must do to make things work..example buy a new switch because my Tv doesn't pass the audio right. So the playbar came out in Feb 2013 fast forward 4 years and now we are seeing soundsbars with Atmos built in. (I know there's not much if any content but my point is at a cheaper price point I get some pretty rich features) Sonos to me is like Apple...they really are relying on the fans to remain loyal. Really all the play bar is for me is a way of cleaning up all the audio gear I had in my living room so that my room is tidier. By the way that cost was almost 1800 dollars (Now over 2300 with taxes) to do and has so many limitations that sometimes I think I must have been crazy. . Sonos can never replace my home theater gear. ..sorry to say doesn't come close to sound when watching movies.
The new play 5 what did it do.... it does sound better than the old play 5 but really plays nothing more. I would have thought about it if it had of had some other innovation such as siri integration or I guess for people in the US google home or Alexia. Don't get me wrong I am all for better sound but that better sound has to be subtancial. I mean the price increase for me was 200 bucks in canada. I lost the portal handle for carrying out to my back deck and I lost the headphone jack...hmmmm and I pay more...my (old)play 5 is a bedroom speaker and it's still awesome.

So now I will look at possibly something else because sonos is is slow to deal with what is in the modern world. Does it mean I will abandon sonos...likely not ..What it does mean is I may look for a more advance (feature rich) sound bar and then connect a Sonos Connect. If MY soundbar has auto sensing then it should still be able to play my sonos when needed...as in like by alarms I have setup.
Now you may see why I think my vision is tooooo narrowly focused on Sonos for my entertaiment system in my living room.
Tacky dust collector
They do not want to use perferated steel mesh because it rebounds the music back
Hang on
Whats on the 1, 3s and 5s
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Because other companies have a habit of trying to copy everything they do.
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We live in hope
Hopefully they will do something with the grill


Sausages!
We live in hope
Why not be up front and say one way or another if a playbar 2 is in the pipeline
Hopefully they will do something with the grill
As well as other mods
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Hope Sonos reads this: I'm not buying a playbar until it has DTS. Why would I buy an obsolete playbar for my OLED TV? Release the playbar 2, and I'm stocking my house with your products with the playbar as the first item.

I also registered a forum account just to communicate this.


I registered also just to comment. I would love to see a player that has cdmi input and its support. It would be even better if it also supported Dolby HD and Atmos maybe sonos could consider up firing speaker to add to a scenario that would enable Atmos also! Or better still incorporated into a new speaker and soundbar! I am so wanting to invest in the sonos world but having a soundbar that doesn't even offer hdmi is a total no go for me. This product does seem ripe for an upgrade having been on the market for quite some time now. I hope that some of this will happen sooner rather than later before I cave in and buy something else, like the Bose 300 system with sub and rears
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Short of an external input I'm not sure what much they could have done to improve on the sub
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would be nice if it were true but probably more likely a minor change similar to that just made with the sub
https://en.community.sonos.com/what-to-get-228989/new-sub-on-the-horizon-6738589/
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I actually like the playbar looks
I'd have thought it more likely that Sonos would be upping the £ rrp as a result of the weakening of the pound against the dollar. Iirc when they increased the Euro price for the same reason a while back there were numerous "discontinued" items in various stores until the new price regime became active.
Bang on i will wait till the day they do , i will never buy the **** looking , tack , dust magnet , poorest product they make till they bring out a 2
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Sonos definitely hasn't announced much on hardware side past few years. It's about time for some more refreshes as the play:5 refresh has appeared to be a major success
I went into a John Lewis store in the UK yesterday to purchase a Sonos Soundbar, Sub and 2 x Play 1's. There were no Soundbars in stock and the nice sales lady looked in her computer and it said "discontinued soon". She offered me 10% off a showroom model but I declined. Not sure whether it's just John Lewis that is stopping stocking them or if this is the first clue that a new Soundbar is about to be released. I chose to wait.
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Id love a SUPERCONNECT with hdmi and output to choice of play 1/3/5 and sub 🙂