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5.1 Sound on Apps (Arc + Sonos One + Vizio P659-G1 + Roku Ultra 4800R)

  • 27 December 2021
  • 2 replies
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Hi folks - I’ve recently purchased a Sonos Arc + two Sonos 1 speakers, and set them up with a Vizio P659-G1, and a Roku Ultra 4800R.

One thing I noticed was that the I couldn’t hear the surround speakers very well when watching any content on the Roku. I also noticed that if I played Spotify via the Sonos app I could hear the surround speakers really well, but if I play the Spotify app via the Roku, I’m only getting Stereo PCM sound through it… And whenI play Netflix, or Amazon Prime, I see “Dolby Digital Plus 5.1” on my Sonos app.

I started reading some threads here about Roku devices, and encoding, and what not, and I figured it might be easier to just ask a question here.

Should the Spotify app on my Roku only output Stereo PCM sound? Or is that a limitation because of Roku or my TV?

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Best answer by GuitarSuperstar 27 December 2021, 20:28

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Spotify only offers music in stereo regardless of what device it’s playing from. It doesn’t offer any music in 5.1 or Dolby Atmos.

The reason why you hear music from the surrounds so well when streaming directly from the Sonos app is because you have music playback for the surrounds set to full which results in full stereo playback from the front speakers AND surround speakers.

When playing from the Spotify app on the Roku, the Arc is still in TV mode. In TV mode, when the Arc receives stereo audio, the Arc will play what is determined to be ambient audio through the surround speakers to create a simulated surround effect. Unfortunately there is not a “full” surround setting while the Arc is in TV mode.

Spotify only offers music in stereo regardless of what device it’s playing from. It doesn’t offer any music in 5.1 or Dolby Atmos.

The reason why you hear music from the surrounds so well when streaming directly from the Sonos app is because you have music playback for the surrounds set to full which results in full stereo playback from the front speakers AND surround speakers.

When playing from the Spotify app on the Roku, the Arc is still in TV mode. In TV mode, when the Arc receives stereo audio, the Arc will play what is determined to be ambient audio through the surround speakers to create a simulated surround effect. Unfortunately there is not a “full” surround setting while the Arc is in TV mode.

Oh duh 😅. That makes a lot of sense, and thanks for explaining the “full” mode!