Support high resolution files



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Thank you for the feedback. At this time, Sonos does not have plans to add support for high resolution audio files, including high resolution FLAC. This topic will remain open for further discussion.
I've never heard of a study and/or a critique of gear, audiophile or otherwise, where people actually preferred the sound of intermodulation distortion.  Harmonic distortion?  Most certainly.  But intermodulation distortion is, was, and will forever be something that one does not want in the playback stream.  The fact that one would posit that it may be a mere flavor of ice cream that one may or may not prefer is quite a stretch.  Unless that flavor is rancid cabbage with cow chips.
Come on Sonos! We want this yesterday.

The thing is, it is most certainly not a large part of the market.  It is a niche (hi-res) of a niche (lossless) of what is becoming a niche (local library, non-service/non-cloud based streaming).  Given the bandwidth consideration (at least 4 times larger than 16/44 FLAC) and the reliability concern that entails, Sonos has (wisely, IMHO) decided the boutique high-end is not a market worth exploring.  And strange enough, Denon, Bose, and Samsung have all followed suit.  Then again, what do they know about the audio/electronics market? 😉
Thank you for the feedback. At this time, Sonos does not have plans to add support for high resolution audio files, including high resolution FLAC. This topic will remain open for further discussion.
So let's add up the score so far:

1) There is a difference between lowres and hires from the same source:

Subjective study that says no.

Objective study that says yes, but headphones suggest it is more felt than heard.

2) Hires is "better" than lowres;

Subjective study that says no.

Subjective study that says no.

Objective science (intermodulation in the analog result from playing hires sources) that says no.

Not looking good for the "Hires is better!" crowd, is it?
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I've never argued the fact. Jgatie does and he is welcome to express his opinion as everyone.
Come on Sonos! We want this yesterday.

Then there's always this in-depth analysis:

http://people.xiph.org/~xiphmont/demo/neil-young.html

Note that article is published by Xiph.org, the makers of the FLAC codec; the most popular hi-rez audio format in use today.  They have everything to gain by touting the superiority of hi-rez audio, but they stick to science and fact.
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I've never argued the fact. Jgatie does and he is welcome to express his opinion as everyone.
I do champion this community. Anyone would see that if they participate in the community and not an individual contested thread.
Come on Sonos! We want this yesterday.

As the article says, the difference is in the mastering, not the resolution. Make sure your dealer plays files from the same source, not one from hi-rez and one from CD. As to whether dedicated audiophiles can be fooled? Naw, the section of the market that believes green markers, cocobolo wood spacers, $10,000 cables, and air treatment sprays can improve sound would never, ever fall for snake oil. 😉
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I don't know why the Champions (obviously Championing Sonos, not the community) argue whether 24/96 support is legitimate. Saying 24/96 is snake oil is silly... a lot of music services sell 24/96, a lot of vinyl rips are done at 24/96. 24/96 is real, here to stay and is growing especially with all of the new high def portable players. I speculate Sonos' architecture and hardware simply can't handle it. Just like Sonos can't handle a "recent albums added" section in the library and more than 65K tracks. I've just accepted this isn't a system for the serious music fan, which is fine. I'm back to enjoying my Squeezebox and looking at Bluesound.
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Thank you for the feedback. At this time, Sonos does not have plans to add support for high resolution audio files, including high resolution FLAC. This topic will remain open for further discussion.
Ghosts? Nope.  Superstition?  Nope.  Bigfoot, Yeti, Bumble Snowman? Nope.  Little green men giving various probes in the middle of the night?  Nope. Paranormal anything? Nope.  I pretty much stand with The Amazing Randi on all that hocus pocus stuff. 

Angels?   Religion?  God? Was raised Catholic, but long ago lapsed.  Whether there is anything beyond this realm, I don't know, for science doesn't know.  To believe in it is an act of faith.  I don't begrudge anyone an act of faith, as long as they know science does not support it.  This includes hires audio.  If you want to say "God exists for me." or "Hires sounds better for me." be my guest.  It's when you say "God is real, and if you don't believe it you are going to hell!!' or "Hires sounds better, and if you don't hear it your ears/gear must suck!!" that I have a problem with.  It's the difference between quietly praying to your own God, and interrupting my dinner to knock on my door and proselytize how much I need God in my life.
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I don't know why the Champions (obviously Championing Sonos, not the community) argue whether 24/96 support is legitimate. Saying 24/96 is snake oil is silly... a lot of music services sell 24/96, a lot of vinyl rips are done at 24/96. 24/96 is real, here to stay and is growing especially with all of the new high def portable players. I speculate Sonos' architecture and hardware simply can't handle it. Just like Sonos can't handle a "recent albums added" section in the library and more than 65K tracks. I've just accepted this isn't a system for the serious music fan, which is fine. I'm back to enjoying my Squeezebox and looking at Bluesound.
I type a lot on my phone and get my words jumbled a bit.
I am finding that more and more of my files are unplayable in SONOS because of the bit depth problem. This is only going to get worse, not better. There are now several competitors to Sonos that ARE able to read high bit depth files. I am not saying that Sonos should be able to PLAY high resolution files, but at least be able to READ them ands downconvert them for the Sonos system.

There are dozens of programs that will downsample hi-res files. It makes no sense for Sonos to do it on the fly when it is 100 times simpler to do it once and be done with it.
Thank you for the feedback. At this time, Sonos does not have plans to add support for high resolution audio files, including high resolution FLAC. This topic will remain open for further discussion.
But B Irvine, the studies showed that no one actually preferred the hires sources.  You are asking a question that is not supported by the data.
Thank you for the feedback. At this time, Sonos does not have plans to add support for high resolution audio files, including high resolution FLAC. This topic will remain open for further discussion.
Thanks.  Incidentally, The Amazing Randi also delves into audio hocus pocus.  He offered $1 Million US to Stereophile Magazine's  Michael Fremer if he could tell the difference between $7250 Pear 'Anjou' Speaker cables and regular Monster brand (I would have specified lamp cord!).  Pear Cable agreed to loan any set of cables needed for the test.  Before the test could take place, both Fremer and Pear Cable pulled out.  The offer sits to this day, with nobody taking the challenge.
I agree with Louis, the main problem is not to know if 24 bits tracks are better than 16 bits, it's just that I have some and I want to play them using my Sonos. I don't care if they are converted or not.
Well, since support of Hi-Res audio is marked as 'Not Planned', your only choices are to downsample or do without.
Thank you for the feedback. At this time, Sonos does not have plans to add support for high resolution audio files, including high resolution FLAC. This topic will remain open for further discussion.
No Sonos exec said they would support this later.  The exact quote was

It’s a big technical challenge for us, but it’s one we’ve definitely been working on,” explained Spence. “We’re looking at overcoming the limitations of streaming 24-bit in the home, as there seems to be a lot of momentum around it at the moment, so stay tuned.
Pure marketing words, with no definitive statement whatsoever.  Which obviously meant so little, they haven't even changed the status in this thread to 'Under Consideration'.
Thank you for the feedback. At this time, Sonos does not have plans to add support for high resolution audio files, including high resolution FLAC. This topic will remain open for further discussion.
Not far fetched for them, but it's pretty absurd for many!  As long as they don't start spouting BS pseudo science (like the CEO of Pear Cables did) to support their beliefs, I'm alright with their choice of faith.  ;-)
Thank you for the feedback. At this time, Sonos does not have plans to add support for high resolution audio files, including high resolution FLAC. This topic will remain open for further discussion.
Dismissing known science in order to say "anything is possible" is not an open mind, it is a fairy tale.  See this write up by the CEO of Blue Jeans cable for the low down on high end cables.  In summary, there are only a few suppliers of extruded copper on the Earth and it tops out at around 35 cents a foot.  I don't care if they are soaking it in unicorn tears and bathing it in Bigfoot sweat, the idea that a cable can go from 35 cents a foot to $7250 for a speaker run is patently absurd!

http://www.bluejeanscable.com/articles/do-you-get-what-you-pay-for.htm

And as it is easy to find out with a simple Google, Randi has explained his requirements in full.  Summarized, he's stated that the test had to be truly ABX, and double blind.  Oh for shame!  He actually wanted to rule out bias!!
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Thank you for the feedback. At this time, Sonos does not have plans to add support for high resolution audio files, including high resolution FLAC. This topic will remain open for further discussion.
It is not a "postition", it is a scientific fact, proven by audible testing. The same testing which refutes any quality differences between 24/96 and 16/44.1. Just thought I'd put that out there. Either way, you can easily convert those files to 16/44.1, thus removing the possibility for bad intermodulation effects and making them playable by Sonos. There are literally hundeds of programs which will do this, such as Media Monkey and dBPoweramp. This in no way compromises your original files, and you can get all the quality of the originals without any harmful intermodulation effects for use in your Sonos library. Somehow I do not think you are going to want to do this. However, since Sonos has marked this Idea as "Unplanned", I will still list this alternative for those who do not buy the hirez snakeoil and prefer their music without the introduction of audible distortion which accompanies the "evolution of quality sound" that is hirez music. Cheers!
I'm doubtful the Sonos boxes have the horsepower to transcode on the fly. Transcoding takes a pretty powerful processor. Personally, I would simply do it once and get it over with, rather than sit around waiting for Sonos to do something which they have already marked "Not Planned." YMMV.
the discussion about 24 bits is an open item for so long Sonos is getting pushed out of the market if they are capable to fix that point in a very short term tons of guys like big player as Pionner Denon Marantz Yamaha are coming with streamer playing any king of bit rates move guy before it will too late
Thank you for the feedback. At this time, Sonos does not have plans to add support for high resolution audio files, including high resolution FLAC. This topic will remain open for further discussion.
Anyone with average eyesight can distinguish a Blu-ray from a DVD.  In double blind tests, not one person, from laymen to self-described 'Golden Ears', have been able to distinguish a Hi-res source from a 44.1/16 when both are sampled from the same master.  Quite bluntly, Hi-res audio is snake oil.

Also, Hi-res recordings have been around since long before Blu-ray, and they have never become "the new standard".
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Flac (even lossless) as generally distributed Robert is supported.  Your premise is incorrect.
People have been asking Sonos to implement hires for at least 5 years with claims that lack of support will somehow result in them being excluded from the market. Years later, and these deluded predictions have yet to be proven even remotely true and yet still they continue to be glibly made. In that time Sonos has significantly grown it's market share whilst the only main competitor that does support hires (Logitech) has retreated from the market. Based on this real-world data, it seems support for hires is NOT the thing to do in order to grow your market. It's clear the people making such irrational warnings are talking utter rubbish! Realistically the requirement for hires is niche: for every person that feels it's important there's probably 100,000 or more who either don't care or know enough to understand the audible benefits are, at best, negligible (and, potentially, hires formats can damage your audio). For those that want to take advantage of the very real benefits of the superior mixing and mastering that is available on many tracks marketed as "hires", you can perform a one-time conversion them to a format Sonos can play and retain the full audio quality.
Thank you for the feedback. At this time, Sonos does not have plans to add support for high resolution audio files, including high resolution FLAC. This topic will remain open for further discussion.
Yes, Martin.  Fairy tales.  16/44.1 is sufficient for all playback of any sound which is audible to the human ear and slightly beyond, including a dynamic range which goes below the noise floor of the quietest rooms and still exceeds the threshold of pain.  The fact that higher resolutions are used for recording and post-processing have no bearing on these facts, and if you did any research into the science, instead of believing in fairy tales, you would know this.

See what the creators of the FLAC codec (actual scientists at xiph.org) have to say about these facts right here:

http://xiph.org/~xiphmont/demo/neil-young.html