Remote doesn't work with Amazon Fire TV when using Soundbar

  • 14 July 2017
  • 5 replies

Here is my set up:
- New Amazon fireTV made by Element
- Sonos Soundbar connected to Amazon TV through optical cable and set for dolby digital.
- AppleTV 4th generation connected to TV with HDMI

Using the built in speakers on the Amazon TV, I can use both the Apple TV remote and the Amazon TV remote to control volume.

However, when I configure sound output to the Soundbar through the optical cable, both remotes stop working for volume controls. The only way I can control the volume on the Soundbar is through my Sonos App. The message I get on Amazon Fire TV is "Volume control not supported for this audio output device."

The previous TV had a remote that did work in controlling volume on the Soundbar.

Is there a work around, so I can use either the Apple remote or the Amazon Fire TV remote to control the volume?


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5 replies

Note to Sonus: Hope you guys address this TV remote issue with the Sonos/Alexa integration. Also make ALL CURRENT products backward compatible with our existing Sonos systems.
Have you actually tried pairing either of those remotes with the Playbar? Are they IR remotes?
Huh, there actually is a company named Sonus, on the other side of the San Francisco bay. They appear to be a networking company, not a speaker company.
I was curious and did a little research. The tv remote is bluetooth, which is not surprising since the fire tv is bluetooth. As well, no where does it state that the remote is universal, can control anything but your tv. Your previous tv setup controlled the volume on the playbar because it used IR and was universal.

I think the Apple TV remote is bluetooth as well.

So, I think you have 4 options:
- Return the tv for a more traditional setup.
- Just control the sound through your phone app.
- Get a Logitech universal remote that handles both IR and bluetooth.
- Go buy an cheaper univeral IR remote that would just control the sound, but not the tv in anyway.

This really isn't a problem with sonos, as you'd run into the same issue with any other sound system. Any of the components you input to the tv as well.

And it's just my opinion, but I try and avoid these smart/all-in-one products as much as possible. I much prefer separate components. Partially because the all-in-one products tend not to work as well with other components as in this case. Partially because the if you ever want to upgrade one of the aspects of all in one (like the fire tv or tv) then you will have to replace everything not just the part you want to upgrade.
Right now I'm just controlling the sound through the phone app, not ideal but it works. And yes the Amazon remote is not IR, which explains why it doesn't work. What's less clear is why the Apple remote doesn't work, since it used to work on another TV that was connected the same way to Sonos, through the optical cable.