Virtual Zones and Zone Grouping

  • 27 February 2005
  • 190 replies
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190 replies

Userlevel 1
For any non-Sonos users browsing these forums, you can group zones already. That's one of the big pluses for Sonos - zone grouping and perfect synchronization between zones. What we're asking for here is the ability to save a predefined group of zones as a new virtual zone to make it easy to select in future. Currently you need to link up all the zones that you want to group each time you change the zone grouping.

There is also another thread about 'scenes' where there is some overlap. That thread is more about setting volumes etc for all the zones in a group. It might make sense to combine these 2 requests as 1. The default of course would be equal volume for all the zones in a defined group. But the ability to customize the relative volume, and save that as a virtual zone would be a plus.

db
Userlevel 2
I totally agree - being able to group & save zones as a preset would be very useful.
Userlevel 2
I have a few zones now, two of my zones are so close (open plan area of the house) I always play the same music. I would like to be able to permanently link two ZPs as a single zone.
Userlevel 1
32 zones, that's 4,294,967,295 possible combinations...apparentlyWell, kinda. Good to see you know your permutations from combinations.

Total mathematical combinations is 2^32 = 4,294,967,296. Take off the one combination of nothing, you get to your number. But I'm not sure we could really count the 32 'combinations' of single zones (we have those as discrete zones already). So I get 4,294,967,263.

Given the massive capacity of 40K tracks, 4MM or so virtual zones shouldn't pose a problem.:p

Better go change my geek/no geek response I think... 😮

db
I think it would be reasonable to limit it to, say, 32 zone groups.

Cheers,

Keith
Userlevel 4
Badge +2
32 zones, that's 4,294,967,295 possible combinations...apparently.
Userlevel 1
I like the idea. Why not have custom zone groups (like the party zone, but user customizable)? A Zone can be in 1 or more zone groups. Further you should be able to activate a group, and then add/drop individual zones for a one-off group (which is what we have now, but no ability to persist the group).

eg 'Downstairs' might be kitchen, den, master bedroom. I select the zone group 'Downstairs' and all 3 zones are sync'd. Then I add a zone 'Patio' just like we do now and 4 zones are sync'd. If I do nothing, the 4 zone group is lost when I unlink. However, maybe I decide I want this as a new group, so save it as 'Patio and downstairs'.

I'm not sure advanced group management is necessary, as you are unlikely to have 200 groups. Even with a large setup (10+ zones) it's probable you'll only have half a dozen or so groups.

Hopefully we'll see this in 1.4 😃

db
Agreed.

The ease of lining/unlinking zones is also dependent on the number of zones you have. 2 or 3 zones isn't too much of an imposition, but I imagine 6 or more is quite painful.

Just imagine if you had the full 32 zones!

At the moment we have a single, pre-defined group, that being "All Zones". I would like to see this as the default, but with the ability to configure your own groups and to delete the "All zones" group (some may not want this).

This would help with people who are having trouble blasting their neighbours during 2am parties by accidentally selecting hottub/garden.

Now this brings an interesting question: should zones be allowed to be in more than one group? If this is allowed, are there any unwanted side-effects with this?

Personally I would be happy with a grouping that allowed zones to be in at most one group (and this might be the easiest to implement), but others may not.

Also, if zone groups were allowed, what "display options" would be useful for the Zones display. Off the top of my head I can see uses for:

* Hide all zones (only show groups)
* Sorting (by name or groups before zones)

These could be either by a user preference or by a toggle button on the zone screen.

Also, how would these be displayed on the other screens (e.g. now playing)... as groups or as individual zones? I suspect individual zones would be better, as this takes into account all circumstances of use.

Cheers,

Keith
Userlevel 2
Badge
I agree - I suggested this a while back.

I work from home and I have zones I use while I'm working and a different set of zones in the evening or at weekends. It certainly would make the system even easier to use if one could select a group of zones quickly.
Userlevel 4
Badge +2
I'm liking this idea, shouldn't be too difficult to implement in theory.
Common groupings as "virtual zones"... Great Idea!
I agree as well.

Howard
Userlevel 2
I agree. Zone groups would be a good idea.

Regards, John
Userlevel 2
Thats a great idea!