How to Play music from my windows laptop to a Sonos Play 1 or Sonos Play 3

  • 6 November 2016
  • 8 replies

I am considering buying a Sonos Play 1 or Sonos Play 3 speaker for the first time. I have all music stored on a laptop upstairs and we have a wifi router. When I play the music does my laptop have to be active i.e if it is in sleep mode will I still be able to play music or will I have to activate laptop first.
I am presuming that I will only need the Sonos Play speaker. Is this correct or are there any other items that will need to be purchased in order to do this.
I want to be able to play the music from any room in the house on the Sonos Play speaker.
Please could I have advice on this matter.
Sarah P

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8 replies

Your laptop cannot be in sleep mode when Sonos tries to access your library.

All you need is the Play:1/3 to get the minimum setup. Though to alleviate the laptop sleeping problem, many choose to store their library on an NAS drive, or a USB drive connected to their router's USB port (if so equipped).
As for NAS (network-attached storage) devices, basic ones are not that expensive. It's essentially a small, special-purpose computer which sits on the network providing files on demand.

Many users have gone the way of uploading their entire library to a cloud service, and streaming it from the internet.

If the collection is small it may even fit onto a phone/tablet, though streaming reliability could be questionable and certain features such as Sonos Playlists can't be used with phone-based tracks.
Could I use a portable Hard Disc Drive for this. What would be the benefits of a NAS
Could I use a portable Hard Disc Drive for this. What would be the benefits of a NAS

Portable USB drives can be used, but only if your router has a USB networking port. Some do not. The advantage of a true NAS is they are dedicated units built for purpose. More reliable, and less dependent on the router's software which may or may not be a robust implementation. They are literally plug, play, and forget. You can also use them for things like photos, backups, etc.
Also how good is the power and sound quality on these speakers comparable in Watts. Also Is this correct: you would leave the speakers permanently on standby and they would start playing using WiFi magic when you press the right button on the controlling device. This would only switch on the correct one. Would there be any additional wiring, setting up etc., that would be required?

Sorry for all the questions but I want to make sure that I will be getting the system that is right for my needs before buying anything.
Because they are self-contained, power ratings mean nothing. Suffice to say they are surprisingly loud for their size and the sound quality is amazing. Yes, they stay in a low power standby mode until you press play on the controller or the device itself. No other wiring is needed, though if you expand to more than 3 or 4 units (they multiply like rabbits), you may want to purchase a Boost to get them set up on a dedicated network. But that's an option for another day, it will work just fine without it.
Thats great. Thanks for the info.
Just to clarify the "they multiply like rabbits" comment from jgatie, they do indeed.....however, you still have to pay for them. :)

I think I have 18 now, give or take a couple. I try not to keep track, it's depressing....or awesome, depending on if I'm thinking about the music, or my wallet.