Line-In Latency/Delay Disable PLAY:5



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It's a really straightforward function that would remove the Play:5 from the group while in standalone mode... it wouldn't exist on the Sonos network. What happens when you unplug a device and use Sonos elsewhere? And who is going to set their Play 5 to Standalone mode and then freak out confused why it isn't streaming with the house?

To the first question, you may well be right, but the law of unintended consequences - in this case of a Sonos speaker running in this mode on Sonosnet along with other speakers that are not suggests that only Sonos can say for sure, and that perhaps after extended testing.
As to the second, you would be surprised!
The latency issue on the line in is just ridiculous, I am absolutely gutted after buying my play 5 purely for the line in (a feature bizarrely missing from the play 3), I am now unable to use my turntables which was the whole reason I bought this setup. Surely there must be a way to disable this when in standalone mode 😞
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The latency issue on the line in is just ridiculous, I am absolutely gutted after buying my play 5 purely for the line in (a feature bizarrely missing from the play 3), I am now unable to use my turntables which was the whole reason I bought this setup. Surely there must be a way to disable this when in standalone mode :-(

You're going to have to explain how a latency of even 10 seconds is remotely a problem when playing an LP through a single Play 5?
The latency issue on the line in is just ridiculous, I am absolutely gutted after buying my play 5 purely for the line in (a feature bizarrely missing from the play 3), I am now unable to use my turntables which was the whole reason I bought this setup. Surely there must be a way to disable this when in standalone mode :-(

You're going to have to explain how a latency of even 10 seconds is remotely a problem when playing an LP through a single Play 5?


When you want to use them for mixing. I understand why you may need this latency for streaming between speakers, but I feel that a flagship product like the play 5 should have the option to remove this latency, just like how the tv bar works. I would love to just use the tv bar, but it has no line in. I love sonos, but I do feel their products hold back features unfairly
Yep that one has me baffled too. The delay is an issue for AV applications, for which the line in was never intended. But music???
Yep that one has me baffled too. The delay is an issue for AV applications, for which the line in was never intended. But music???

Looking online it seems like so many people share the same complaint, such a shame 😞
It isn't designed for mixing. It is a multiroom home hifi system. How much it costs is irrelevant. In a much used analogy on here, the fact that a Ferrari is useless off road doesn't make it a bad car, overpriced, or lacking a feature it should have.
I bought a Sonos Play 5 with the sole purpose of connecting it to my tv (I'm using the headset line out), I was a bit worried about this issue but thought I would take a risk and try, pleased to report it works perfectly and no one in the household can notice any lag. Very happy with the purchase.
I just bought a Play:5 and am trying to decide between keeping it and buying more, or going the Chromecast route (probably using JBL Playlists and the forthcoming Google Home Max).

If I could have them do part-time duty as part of a larger network of Chromecast speakers (including legacy speakers, e.g. outdoors), that would be fantastic, but of course we ran into this delay issue as soon as we tried it. I think it would be completely consistent with the rest of the Sonos UI for it to seamlessly "do the right thing" -- when you have a *single* speaker driven by line-in, minimize the delay, when playing to multiple speakers, add the delay. There wouldn't need to be any option exposed in the UI. With the proposed improvement, the Sonos would be just as good as all our other random speakers when driven by a Chromecast Audio, rather than unusably inferior to those speakers in this use case.

It sounds like the forthcoming Airplay 2 support may provide another way to do have Sonos play together with non-Sonos speakers, which is exciting.
It isn't designed for mixing. It is a multiroom home hifi system. How much it costs is irrelevant. In a much used analogy on here, the fact that a Ferrari is useless off road doesn't make it a bad car, overpriced, or lacking a feature it should have.

I think you guys shouldn't just focus on the mixing idea. Sure, it's quite uncommen for a use case... BUT... I personally bought the Play5 to connect it via Line-In to my computer. Gaming, watching videos, editing... NOT POSSIBLE. The Line-In was the reason for the Play5 in the frist place.

There has to be a way to direct the sound signal immediately to the speaker without delay IF you dont want to stream to other speakers too.

SONOS should warn about the delay when advertising the Line-In Option. Otherwise other people with the same idea get dissapointed. Like me.


Please help & sorry for upping the old post.
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Would just like to add my support to this request. The home mixing use case is certainly not niche. A zero latency option to enable a home DJ to stream their mixes out of their DJ mixer or controller into just one (or all) of their Sonos speakers is certainly something I feel a LOT of users would find beneficial.

I would also hasten to add the irony of paying DJ A-Trak to advertise Sonos equipment that he clearly cannot use as part of his DJ set up. It doesn't seem like a huge ask if I'm honest.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T7_BF_Qh-t4

Have you guys thought about teaming up with the likes of Pioneer, Native Instruments or Serato to integrate some kind of work around in their software to tap into the DJ community. I think the popularity of trade shows like NAMM prove Its a growing market. I would love to somehow have a one system suits all use cases scenario like a traditional amplifier used to offer. 😞
I’d like to cast another vote for option of no delay. I use playbar for karaoke but lag prevents from being good. I was looking into play 5 as I read aux in generally achieve less lag compared to optical cable. Since one of Sonos sales point seems like it is for everyone for different situations, I think if this is truly software thing, it would add yet another argument for Sonos providing more options for another group of audience.
If it would be practical to eliminate the delay for an isolated PLAY:5, the very next request would be to add a stereo paired speaker or more speakers to cover larger areas. And, since it is a “wireless” speaker, this should be done wirelessly. This will require reliable communication between units and this was the original reason for incorporating the 70 ms latency.

Personally, I always purchase tools designed for the purpose. I pay more for my tools than a friend who always buys the cheap tool. My friend is always struggling with the tool that almost works, then breaks. My tools are initially more expensive, but do a great job and last for decades. We were recently working on a project and he demanded that we use the cheap tool. The tool broke halfway through the project. He relented and we replaced it with a better tool. It was smooth sailing from that point and we could work faster.

In my opinion, SONOS is not the appropriate tool for DJ work.

I will also note that a professional, DJ who works in large spaces, must learn to deal with echos in the space. If the space has a 35 foot dimension, there will be an echo at 70ms because sound travels approximately one foot per millisecond.
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In my opinion, SONOS is not the appropriate tool for DJ work.


Whilst I agree in its current form the Play eco system is not appropriate for DJ work, I would argue that your "correct Tool for the job" analogy is slightly contentious. One of the key use cases of a multi room hifi system would be to proivide full audio coverage during parties. Therefore one would assume that Sonos would be an appropriate "Tool" for that job.

Sonos themselves are actively advertising their Play Eco system as a "Tool" to accomodate Parties. When in a large proportion of use cases that simply isn't possible. The majority of the house parties I've attended since the 90's have some kind of rudamentory DJ set-up. So one could argue that that Sonos should try to accomodate this key use case, or at least be clearer in their media campaigns by removing any potentially misleading advertising that indicates otherwise. My example of Sonos using DJ A-Trak is a prime case where some non technical people could be caught out by the way the advert is worded and claim to have felt mislead.

The use case for a single speaker to be placed in audio cut through / direct mode would essentially be to act as a monitor for DJ or person mixing in multi speaker set up. Delays around the rest of the rooms would not be an issue for a good DJ. However, in small home venues a single Play 5 should be a perfectly adequate "Tool" to use as a single source for all use case scenario's. In this case it clearly isn't, So Sonos need to be clearer about that.
AUX input lag/latency had been issue to at least some in the past and now including me and for sure some more in the future. It is easy to attribute Wireless/multi-room speaker system are built such that this is unavoidable. Well, by the virtue of design it makes sense the latency/delay is needed for syncing multiple devices wirelessly; however, I still did not agree or convinced me why we cannot have it optional feature as opener of this thread stated. So rather than simply giving up, I ended doing extensive online search and physical testing of certain devices on my own across different vendors. Four major players of wireless multi-room speaker I gathered/I got interested in were SONOS, Bose, Denon HEOS, and Bluesound.

SONOS is out as we all know based on this thread and others. Bose have similar thread on their official forum, so based on it I assume they are in the same situation/stance as SONOS. Two I could not tell were HEOS and Bluesound. When I asked Bluesound forum, rep made it sound like there is no delay if direct AUX input was utilized without other speaker linking. HEOS does not have official forum, but they have FAQ section talked about delay and says just play locally and should take away the delay. So I ended up testing two on my own.

The way I tested was using Japanese Karaoke game software on PS4 and Nintendo Switch. Both provides latency check feature from Microphone input. PS4 gives absolute value in milli-seconds; whereas, Nintendo Switch gives category (low, medium or high).

PS4 has only optical output for direct audio line, which we all know is not as fast as AUX line due to associated time for digital to analog conversion. Regardless, the result was as following:

HEOS Soundbar - 79-81 ms
SONOS Playbar - 84-90 ms
Bluesound Pulse 2 - 90+ ms
Edifier S2000Pro - 41 ms

Note here, Edifier has multiple input options including AUX, Optical and Bluetooth but it is not Wireless Multiroom speaker. I used this as a basis how fast thing can get. Also, Bluesound Pulse 2 is Play 5 equivalent i.e. not a sounder like HEOS or SONOS but those are what I had. Basically, other than Edifier (non-wifi speaker), optical line delay was considered significant and these are indeed perceivable.

With PS4, I could not do real AUX line testing as PS4 does not have the option. So best I could do is connect PS4 by HDMI to my TV and use TV's AUX out, but TV direct out had already 90ms delay. So these results were all slower than PS4 direct optical connection.

Now I switched to Nintendo Switch for the best/least lag testing. This is because Nintendo Switch has AUX output. I wish they had numerical delay measure like PS4, but again here it is just category.

HEOS Soundbar - Medium
HEOS 5 (gen 2) - Low
Bluesound Pulse 2 - Medium
Edifier S2000Pro - Low

Since I first got HEOS 5 gen 2 and seeing low latency, and supported by subjective test as well, I was excited and ended up ordering HEOS Soundbar. So it was a bit disappointment and surprise, HEOS Soundbar still had delay. This becomes noticeable especially turning on Voice emphasizing feature, but even turning those digital processing feature off, it is still medium and still noticeable.

Edifier S2000Pro is essentially unnoticeable. HEOS 5 gen 2 is acceptable for me, but when you have it next to Edifier S2000Pro, subtle lag may be noted if singing fast paced songs. Another disappointment to me is Bluesound Pulse 2. I really liked their software and sound, but lag is just same as SONOS. Despite both medium category, HEOSBar with all DSP turned off is better than Pulse 2 on delay.

So in summary, anyone who says all Wifi multi-room speakers MUST have AUX input delay/lag is partly correct but not entirely true statement and I can assure you most of those who make these statement had never tested. Basically, HEOS has far better lag/latency than others and it is acceptable range for my Karaoke use. So if one company can do it, why can't others? Well, I think that's by design and company's stance, which we all need to respect. But anyone in the future like myself who need an option of minimum latency/lag free speaker option in their multi-room wireless speaker system, I'd recommend checking out HEOS. In fact, it is the only valid option for now, and probably any perceivable future as this feature has not been addressed by other companies including SONOS for years, it is simply not an interest/priority for other companies.
As a software engineer myself, I find it difficult to believe that this would require a complete redesign of the software. Let’s be real.

I guess it would have made sense for everyone who experiences this issue to have researched it more, however - It’s not something that the average consumer would typically feel the need to double check. I mean, there’s an analog line in, obviously it needs to pass through an A/D converter, but any latency there should be indistinguishable so why would it cross your mind that there will be a latency there. Especially if you only get a single play 5.. (synchronization acroos the other devices may not be at the forefront of your mind) ultimately there are a lot of paths to neglecting the research. So that’s not really an excuse for Sonos. Regardless of how well they document it, folks will run into this issue.

The right thing to do is just implement it. High end audio devises should always retain a “zero” latency option. A simple start would be with the play 5 given that it has an analog input and a dedicated amplifier. It seems to me like a simple fix, it shouldn’t need to change anything with sync and streaming other than an additional logical branch that disables it for the device being used in “DJ mode”, and an option on the controllers to enable it for line in.

Obviously, I don’t actually know how Sonos has implemented their current system, and I’m not knocking any of the great work their engineers have done. It’s awesome! Instead, this feels like a prioritization issue, and product management doesn’t feel like this is a win. I would like to state that IMHO, this is a major issue.

Use cases:
Having friends over, Sonos DJ setup. #winning
Virtually every instance of interacting with music on your sonos system.
For example
Playing Live Edrums over Spotify tracks. (Now your friends can hear you too)
Karaoke - who doesn’t love getting drunk and singing “when the lights go out in the city” “and the sun shines on the baaay”
Many many more.


There is about a 70ms delay between a SONOS Line-In and output from a player. There is no option to defeat this. Adding an option to do this would require a complete redesign of the software and this would have negative impact on wireless streaming reliability.

SONOS was not designed to be used in live a DJ environment.

Why are you attempting to use SONOS for this application? Is it for wireless connectivity or compact size?

A workaround would be to use headphones with high acoustic isolation to monitor the mixer output.
The latency has nothing to do with the A/D conversion. It is due to the input being buffered for transport to other devices, since timing issues require a significant buffer in order to achieve the perfect sync and reliability Sonos is known for.

Now one can ask why this buffering needs to be there if one is only using a single unit, but Sonos usually eschews that type of multi-use configuration, defaulting instead to its main purpose; a multi-room networked music system.
The latency has nothing to do with the A/D conversion. It is due to the input being buffered for transport to other devices, since timing issues require a significant buffer in order to achieve the perfect sync and reliability Sonos is known for.

Now one can ask why this buffering needs to be there if one is only using a single unit, but Sonos usually eschews that type of multi-use configuration, defaulting instead to its main purpose; a multi-room networked music system.


Yes, agreed! Sort of...
( Latency through A/D should be indistinguishable ) the word choice “should” is due to the fact that in certain situations the A/D conversion can introduce a noticeable latency.

This is directly related to IO buffer and sample size. So if the A/D conversion employs a lower sample size, less computing power is needed, however - this means a noticeable latency. Same with IO buffer.

So A/D does factor into latency, however - the transport buffer is really what we’re talking about. (Provided A/D is capable of sub 6ms latency)
I solved the problem for myself. I put a cheap delay on the audio out of my pre-amp to my 4-Amp Linn system and delayed it for 70 MS. The Motron RTS 200c Radio/TV Sync ($199 at Amazon). Now I control my Play 5 pair in the Dining Room and my Living Room Linn system with my iPhone Airplay. Separate volume control from my pocket.
Im going to add a Me Too on this one. I want to be able to use my Play:5 with my mixer but the audio delay is a problem when mixing tracks. No delay option would be great.
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#MeToo, even if I understand Sonos not wanting to address this advanced corner case. Perhaps a Sonos "jailbreak" will make it possible one day.
One lip-sync workaround when watching movies is to use the negative audio delay setting of the media player, when available. E.g. VLC and Kodi have such a feature on TV boxes.
Count me in on this issue - it sucks!
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It's never going to happen. It is such a niche feature for a limited audience and would require so much work that it's never going to reach anywhere near the top of the Sonos to do list.

The same answer was given when this thread started a few years back and nothing will change that unfortunately.
I'd love a low latency aux mode! I have synths and other electronic music equipment that I'd love to be able to use with my Play:5
I'm going to add another bump to say I'd like this. For the same reasons as the OP. I'm also going to give my 2 cents.

I know SONOS likely won't do this, so I'm looking at other solutions. But I figured, I can request it.



I own a SONOS beam, and when i use it with the line in from the TV it stays almost perfectly in sync. Or at least close enough for me. If there is a 30 ms delay, I hardly notice it, and it is WAY better than the 70 ms delay on the rest of my speakers. However, the beam stays out of sync from the rest of the house when using the line in, because the rest of the house is on that 70ms delay. All of this makes sense so far to me. The delay to keep the house in sync is perfectly acceptable.

I think the ask, is that the play 5 be able to, locally, by itself, when not pushing out to the rest of the house, be able to have a reduced delay for a standalone mode. I would buy a play:5 tomorrow if that were the case. As it is, I have a dj controller that is hooked up to some really really terrible, old computer speakers. But there is no delay on them. All of the rest of my house speakers are Sonos.

The beam works with little delay. This same functionality for the play:5 would be great. If it gets grouped with other speakers, it can switch to the 70 ms delay. That would be fine by me. When my beam is grouped with other speakers, it shares their delay and that makes sense.

This would be no more confusing to consumers than it currently is, because as it currently stands, the average consumer doesn't deal with this issue. And when they do, as this thread shows, they run into confusion. This would eliminate some of that confusion, and to the rest of the people that don't want this functionality, it simply would not affect them.


I wonder if I can figure out a way to feed my DJ controller into the beam. Does anyone know how well that solution may work?

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