I am looking at buying the new Sonos AMP for my lounge, with the Sub and a pair of Bose 791 speakers. However, I need to understand how the ARC works. I want the options of having the TV sound, Sky, PS4 coming out of my speakers when I want it, but the rest of the time, I just want it to use the speakers built into the TV. Is this selectable or if I use the ARC, does the sound always need to come through the Sonos AMP?

Best answer by ratty 15 July 2019, 18:45

40m is a very long cable. Temporarily move the Sonos Amp near to the TV. If that works okay you'll know the cable is the issue.
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Hi JRHolloway

HDMI-ARC is not selectable (nor is the optical to HDMI option). You can remove the HDMI-ARC cable to disengage sound via the Sonos Amp to your speakers; but that IMO defeats the purpose of using HDMI-ARC with your TV. Also, you can go into your TV's menu to disengage it. Anything connected to your TV will be heard through the Sonos Amp.

Just to be clear there is no such thing as an HDMI-ARC cable. So don't go shopping for a cable labeled as HDMI-ARC. HDMI cables have specifications the latest of which is HDMI 2.0 and recently approved HDMI 2.1. In fact HDMI-ARC was introduced under specification 1.4. You'll find both of the former available in stores and on-line.

If you will...might you tell us why you would want to disengage sound from your Bose 791 speakers and revert back to the ones built into your TV:?

You also asked to understand how HDMI-ARC works. ARC stands for Audio Return Channel. When two devices are ARC compatible they can actually communicate with each other. The Sonos Beam which is HDMI-ARC capable can actually be commanded (via Alexa voice) to turn your TV on/off and also switch inputs.* Other manufactures may employ HDMI-ARC to work with there TV and another component under their brand.

* Depending upon the TV manufacturer all HDMI-ARC features capable by the Beam may not function. Here's an article that speaks to the implementations of ARC (or the hit/miss implementation) of the feature by TV manufacturers:

I have a similar setup, and wondered the same thing. It's inconvenient. You can change the TV audio out setting from ARC (or whatever it's called - LG call it Simplink) to internal speakers and back, but that's a pain. There's no setting on the amp that will help. I now use the external speakers for everything and it's brilliant and simple. It just works. Play music through the Amp, or turn the TV on and it automatically plays that. Any app on the TV also works, and any HDMI-connected device such as PS4 or Bluray player just works too. And all the sound coming through the TV can be in Dolby 5.1 if the source material is in that format. Some Bluray players even convert sound from whatever format to DD5.1. So if you add two Play Ones or similar, you can have a surround sound setup too.

Cheers, Peter.
OK So I purchased the Sonos AMP and a new Samsung Frame 2019 65 inch TV. Speaker wise, its connected to a pair of Bose 791 and the Sonos Sub. The sonos works fine for music via spotify etc. but I'm having major problems with Audio coming via the ARC from multiple sources such as Sky Q, PS4, etc. The sound keeps cutting out every 2 / 3 seconds.

Initially I thought it may be the cable as my sonos amp is in the loft, in a data cabinet and my TV etc is downstairs. There is a 40m 2.0 HDMI cable connecting the Sonos Amp and the Samsung Frame Connectivity box wired via the ARC, but using it as a HDMI cable directly putting my PS4 in the loft, and connecting the other end to my TV send the sound and picture fine to the TV (Using TV Speakers obviously) so I know the cable isn't the issue.

I've narrowed it down to either the Sonos Amp or the TV, unfortunately I don't have anything else in the house which is ARC capable so can't test it any further.

Has anyone got any ideas? so p****** off right now, spent all this money and I can't get any TV/Sky sound through my ceiling speakers :(

Your help would be appreciated.
40m is a very long cable. Temporarily move the Sonos Amp near to the TV. If that works okay you'll know the cable is the issue.

I've tested the cable with my PS4, the picture was fine on blueray so I know the cables good. I put my PS4 in the loft, and used the HDMI cable that was plugged into the sonos, the other end was plugged into the ARC on my Samsung Frame Box.

Unfortunately its not easy to move my amp, my speakers are in the ceiling, and go outside via trunking up the wall and into the loft. I'd have to get additional speaker wire, pull them out of the ceiling, bring the amp downstairs and then configure it.
I'm sorry, but your test is not valid. HDMI-ARC uses different pins. What's more, the key factor is the voltage attenuation of the TV's output over that long cable run, versus the Amp's sensitivity.

You should be able to test the Amp on a shorter HDMI cable without wiring it to the Bose speakers. The Sub should still be active for you to hear if the audio drops out or not. Alternatively if you have other Sonos players you could group one with the Amp and monitor the TV signal through it.
Ok, that's a fair point. I will test it using the sub.

I have been looking at these as alternatives. I've got spare CAT 6 between the loft and my Living room which is where my Bose etc. is.

option 3, 100m - £165 quid one. What do you think?
Ok, so I've tested it and it looks like you are correct. I've only used the sub, but the sound seems to be constant.

What do you think about me extending it using CAT 6, they say they support ARC? I could always send them back if not.
Sorry, this one.
I've no experience of HDMI-over-Cat5/6 extenders. At that sort of price I'd suggest you check the specs from the manufacturer if possible, as well as from Amazon.
It will cost me £200 to get my electrician to re-do the cable, so I might as well give them a try. I can always send them back if they don't work :(

Many thanks for your help
There are HDMI boosters out their that will plug into a wall and boost the signal for these long cables. Those are much cheaper, but I don't think they'll work for ARC. I looked at few and nothing of mentioned ARC, and I imagine they only boost the pins for the video direction only.

Whatever you buy, make sure you can return it if it doesn't resolve the issue.
Thanks man, Amazon are pretty good customer service wise, so will go with that and see how it goes. will report back.
I am having the same issue and I have not done the test with a shorter cable and the tv closer to the amp yet, I plan on trouble shooting a couple things tonight. My hope is to watch tv out by my pool and was planning on running the arc through a Jtech hdmi extender with cat 6 so I can have sound from the amp to my ourtdoor speakers.

JRHolloway I was just wandering what you came up with and if you found any solutions to this issue?
Hello, yes the ARC sender I posted above is working perfectly. Unfortunately I think my issue was a faulty hdmi cable as length wise it should have been fine according to the specifications.
Hello, yes the ARC sender I posted above is working perfectly. Unfortunately I think my issue was a faulty hdmi cable as length wise it should have been fine according to the specifications.
Great thank you