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Sonos Arc extremely poor dialogue levels VS Music and Action

  • 6 November 2020
  • 48 replies
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Userlevel 5
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@Ryan A @Ryan S 

 

Hi Guys do you know if the above issue is still being looked into on the Sonos ARC please?

thanks

Userlevel 5
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Still have this issue with my ARC and not improved with any of the updates

Have you tried another Arc or a Beam Gen 2 instead? Switching to a Beam resolved all my issues. 

Well I have Beam gen 2 upstairs and yes its much better on this compared to the ARC, but I wouldn't want to lose the wider sound stage as my living room is quite large. 

Brought an ARC and sub. Not at all impressed with the voice clarity. Performed the trueplay tuning but nothing improved. Everyone in our household complain about the same thing. I listened to the bose 900 and voice quality is crisp and music has more details. I am planning to return this.

Userlevel 7
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Have you done a Trueplay?

I’ve had my Arc for a few days now and I had the same problem until I turned loudness OFF, turned speech enhancement ON and redid Trueplay. It made a night and day difference. I’m not sure exactly how the Loudness setting works but it only seems to make loud noises louder, which is counterproductive to speech. 

I’ve found a fix. Use your native tv apps and your sound will improve drastically. Apple TV for some odd reason, sounds worse and doesn’t let the Arc breath. If you have an LG, you still have access to the Apple TV app on WebOS. Try it out, you’ll be surprised

I just purchased Sonos Arc and Sonus Sub. Look like I have make the biggest regret purchasing these. Dialogue sound is so so so poor. I have tried changing so many combinations of settings and the dialogue is still extremely poor!

My denon and polk audio combo is much much better in sound at 1/3 of the cost of Sonos.

 

I just purchased Sonos Arc and Sonus Sub. Look like I have make the biggest regret purchasing these. Dialogue sound is so so so poor. I have tried changing so many combinations of settings and the dialogue is still extremely poor!

My denon and polk audio combo is much much better in sound at 1/3 of the cost of Sonos.
 

Which settings/combinations have you tried?

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Hi all - for what it’s worth… I had a brand new Arc about a week ago… music and effects sounded excellent in stereo, 5.1 or Atmos. Dialogue was generally “fine” in stereo… but as soon as I tried 5.1 or Atmos it was a muddy, mumbly, tinny mess. Certainly nowhere near the sound I paid that sort of price for. 

 

I spent 90 minutes on a call to Sonos support and tried every setting and little bit of trouble shooting going - I didn’t get anywhere.

 

I returned the Arc for a Beam Gen 2 and the difference was night and day - dialogue in 5.1 and Atmos was now clear and crisp. 
 

So, for anyone not getting what they want from the Arc, I highly recommend trying a Beam! Sometimes more expensive doesn’t equal a better experience. 

Userlevel 3
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I'm beginning to think that I am the problem. A lifetime of loud music and noise, so I usually have to crank things up to louder than others in the family. Also likely my ability to differentiate at the margins doesn't work too well. I am sure everyone else has perfect hearing.

Userlevel 7
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I'm beginning to think that I am the problem. A lifetime of loud music and noise, so I usually have to crank things up to louder than others in the family. Also likely my ability to differentiate at the margins doesn't work too well. I am sure everyone else has perfect hearing.

My ears are horrible, severe hearing loss.

With or without my hearing aids I have issues with the low voice volume on my Arc center channel.

Any Sonos Bar set up is a compromise for convenience over a AVR based HT wired speaker set up with a dedicated centre channel/speaker and this is one of the prices paid for the compromise.

One workable solution is to use subtitles for dialogue. It does not take long to get used to it.

Userlevel 7
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Subtitles aren’t a good option if you don’t constantly look at the TV. A lot of my watching time I am not looking at the screen as I’m also doing something else. You can also get some spousal grumpiness when they cover up parts of the screen they want to see. 

I passed on the Sonos Amp for the single reason that it had no dedicated center channel. 

 

 

I went the same route from beam to ARC Ive read lots of reviews where they al praised ARC but to be honest I was very dissapointed, the only good thing Is that the second hand market is strong so I did not loose more than 1/10th of the new price.

Same problem.

I am very unhappy with the dialogue performance.

I wish there was a solution.

I appreciate we may each hear some things ‘differently’, there may already be a solution to this, but that depends on what is/isn’t being heard and the troubleshooting that has actually been undertaken so far with the various options currently available in the App and the local environment🤔?

Hi Ken

I appreciate your support. Unfortunatly I am pretty certain I tried all possible solutions already.

I own a Arc, Sub and 2 Ones SL. Driven from TV with eArc.

Did TruePlay with Iphone 12 Pro.

Mids are generally washed out. Not present. Like there is a frequency hump in the 300-600 Hz range.

 

It seams the only solution is to move from Arc to the Beam Gen 2 as others have done and reported a significant imporvement.

The current EQ options in the App cannot fix this and the speach improvment is already on.

To really fix this, there would be a mids EQ option required in the 300-600 Hz range.

It also does not help that there is a True-Play lottery with different IOS devices giving clearly audible different results. It seems that Iphone SE 2020 give the best results.

This can only be fixed with further Software control.

Regards, Michael

Userlevel 7
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Can you pinpoint what audio format the Arc is receiving when you have this problem?

If it was an Apple TV 4K, it might have been this issue: 

 

Userlevel 5
Badge +7

Still have this issue with my ARC and not improved with any of the updates

I am having dialogue issues as well but I wonder if it’s due to using the Apple TV 4K. My arc was working fine for sounds and dialogue when I was using Firestick 4K. My current set up is Sony a90j oled  with eArc hdmi connection to arc with Sonos sub and two play 1’s.  When I leave the Appletv audio set to auto/Dolby atmos the Sonos system showed multichannel PCM 5.1 but the sound especially dialogue was very low. I had to increase volume from 40 to 50-60. When I changed the Apple TV audio to Dolby digital 5.1 the sound and dialogue was back to being good and I was back to setting volume to 40. I hate to change the Appletv audio settings based on Dolby atmos vs Dolby digital for different movies. I didn’t have these sound issues with the Firestick. It didn’t send out any multichannel PCM signal. Is everyone else having these sound issues with other streaming devices?  I am considering returning the Appletv and buying a new Firestick   Any response would be appreciated 

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Volume Normalization is what you are asking for and, to be frank, doesn’t make sense in a “home theater”.

Other than that, be sure to Trueplay.

Userlevel 7
Badge +17

Not sure how you can come to the conclusion there’s many people out there having this problem but you contacted Sonos to let them try and solve it?

Turn OFF “Reduce Loud Sounds” on the Apple TV.  It really messes up Atmos on the ARC.  I’m so glad I tried that, it solved the dialog issue for me completely.  Before vocals would jump around in volume depending on the scene.

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