Why is there input delay on line-in and digital inputs?

  • 13 December 2022
  • 32 replies
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32 replies

@buzz I get what you say. Of course, my Yamaha Monitor speakers are built for my live music usecase. So now I have sonos in my living room, and yamaha’s at my desk. You could argue this is the best setup.

Sonos is intended for multi-room usage after all. And I totally understand there has to be a delay to make this work reliable. Nevertheless, when only using one speaker (or 2+ when using Sonos Amp with wires speakers in 2.1 setup) connected via digital or analog input, there is simply no need for delay. The delay can be added as soon as needed: when streaming from or to other (grouped/stereo) speakers. For example: the sonos amp in 2.1 does not need any delay. As soon as you add rear speakers or group it with an other room. Then yes, you need the delay for it to function. 

 

Stop referring to a “digital input”.  The only Sonos devices with digital inputs are soundbars made for TV.  The others (Port, Amp, Five) are all analog inputs.

As to “The delay can be added as soon as needed: when streaming from or to other (grouped/stereo) speakers.”, you do know you can switch from a single speaker to a group of up to 32 speakers with a tap of the controller?  So how are you going to magically add a 75 ms buffer to that “standalone” stream without stopping the music?  The music playing seamlessly when grouping and ungrouping is part of the Sonos experience, stopping the music to build up a buffer is not.  

Stop referring to a “digital input”.  The only Sonos devices with digital inputs are soundbars made for TV.  The others (Port, Amp, Five) are all analog inputs.

As to “The delay can be added as soon as needed: when streaming from or to other (grouped/stereo) speakers.”, you do know you can switch from a single speaker to a group of up to 32 speakers with a tap of the controller?  So how are you going to magically add a 75 ms buffer to that “standalone” stream without stopping the music?  The music playing seamlessly when grouping and ungrouping is part of the Sonos experience, stopping the music to build up a buffer is not.  

I specifically refer to my Sonos Amp which DOES have a digital AND analog input. It’s called HDMI and there is also a HDMI to optical dongle. And since the Amp is cleary made for a Hifi experience, why not offer Hifi-like 0 delay experience. 

And to answer your question: when I group I have to hold the play button and it takes ~2 seconds and and a confirmation ‘bleep’ before the device starts playing. So I guess it would not be that big of a problem that IF a standalone device is playing at 0 delay (because it’s plugged in via an analog or digital input), it would simply play a 75ms ‘bleep’ to confirm and to masquarade a pause. Heck, you wouldn’t even hear it if you are in a other room pressing the group button on a other device.

 

And to get back to a proposed solution using a Five; Since there have been no answers, I think no one knows if the Play:5 / Five standalone ‘workaround’ by disabling network connection actually works for everyone, or if it was just a bug.  

I specifically refer to my Sonos Amp which DOES have a digital AND analog input. It’s called HDMI and there is also a HDMI to optical dongle. And since the Amp is cleary made for a Hifi experience, why not offer Hifi-like 0 delay experience. 

And to answer your question: when I group I have to hold the play button and it takes ~2 seconds and and a confirmation ‘bleep’ before the device starts playing. So I guess it would not be that big of a problem that IF a standalone device is playing at 0 delay (because it’s plugged in via an analog or digital input), it would simply play a 75ms ‘bleep’ to confirm and to masquarade a pause. Heck, you wouldn’t even hear it if you are in a other room pressing the group button on a other device.

 

That’s a function of the long press on the play button, not the actual grouping.  If you group via the app, as most do, grouping is almost instantaneous and there is no ‘bleep’.  

 

And to get back to a proposed solution using a Five; Since there have been no answers, I think no one knows if the Play:5 / Five standalone ‘workaround’ by disabling network connection actually works for everyone, or if it was just a bug.  

 

It’s been answered before; the Five will have the delay regardless of the network connectivity.  The person claiming otherwise was just wishful thinking.  

Bottom line, if you need live performance type response, Sonos is not fit for purpose.  Find something else. 

 

Stop referring to a “digital input”.  The only Sonos devices with digital inputs are soundbars made for TV.  The others (Port, Amp, Five) are all analog inputs.

As to “The delay can be added as soon as needed: when streaming from or to other (grouped/stereo) speakers.”, you do know you can switch from a single speaker to a group of up to 32 speakers with a tap of the controller?  So how are you going to magically add a 75 ms buffer to that “standalone” stream without stopping the music?  The music playing seamlessly when grouping and ungrouping is part of the Sonos experience, stopping the music to build up a buffer is not.  

I specifically refer to my Sonos Amp which DOES have a digital AND analog input. It’s called HDMI and there is also a HDMI to optical dongle. And since the Amp is cleary made for a Hifi experience, why not offer Hifi-like 0 delay experience. 

 

 

If you’re going to split hairs, it’s an HDMI-ARC connection, not HDMI.  It’s using an HDMI cable but a source that outputs audio over the HDMI standard won’t be read by the Amp, It has to to output over the ARC channels.    And since HDMI-ARC was clearly designed for AV setups, and with view exceptions, only TVs generated the signal, it’s quite a stretch to claim that it’s to be used for straight audio sources.  Yes, you can use an optical dongle, but that was created for legacy TVs that are not HDMI-ARC compatible.  The fact that you this source is labeled as TV and can’t be renamed emphasizes this point.  Again, you might be able to use the Amp for unintended purposes, but that that doesn’t suddenly make it an intended purpose.

 

And to answer your question: when I group I have to hold the play button and it takes ~2 seconds and and a confirmation ‘bleep’ before the device starts playing. So I guess it would not be that big of a problem that IF a standalone device is playing at 0 delay (because it’s plugged in via an analog or digital input), it would simply play a 75ms ‘bleep’ to confirm and to masquarade a pause. Heck, you wouldn’t even hear it if you are in a other room pressing the group button on a other device.

 

 

This is not a feature I would want instead of current functionality, and not something I would ever turn on.  I don’t want a moment of bleeps or silence every time I change the groupings in place.  As well, how would it handle the case where you go from a group to a single player.  Do you just skip 75ms of the audio?

 

 

 

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I replaced my Sonos S1 system last week, which previously consisted of 3 Sonos Connect and a Sonos Connect AMP with Sonos Port and Sonos Amp. 
Why I did that I wonder now - maybe I just wanted to continue to support Sonos as one of the first users.
So now I have a new Sonos Amp in my home office. Here, my typical usage looked like connecting via line-in to the audio output of my notebook.
I played music mostly through the Windows Controller app and for video conferencing I use the line-in signal.
This worked wonderfully with the old S1 Sonos Connect Amp, but is NOT possible with the new device. 
The audio delay described here is a game stopper here. So this is what I spent thousands on - cool.

I replaced my Sonos S1 system last week, which previously consisted of 3 Sonos Connect and a Sonos Connect AMP with Sonos Port and Sonos Amp. 
Why I did that I wonder now - maybe I just wanted to continue to support Sonos as one of the first users.
So now I have a new Sonos Amp in my home office. Here, my typical usage looked like connecting via line-in to the audio output of my notebook.
I played music mostly through the Windows Controller app and for video conferencing I use the line-in signal.
This worked wonderfully with the old S1 Sonos Connect Amp, but is NOT possible with the new device. 
The audio delay described here is a game stopper here. So this is what I spent thousands on - cool.

 

The Line-In delay has been present since the very first ZP100 rolled off the assembly line back in 2005.  There is no difference in the Line-In delay from then to now, or from S1 to S2.  

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@jgatie - Thanks for your answer, which motivated me to dig a little deeper into the Sonos device settings. Here I saw that there was a default value for the signal delay of 2000 ms - no idea why this is the new default value - but I was able to solve my problem very easily by lowering this value to 70 ms. Now everything works like before!

Thank you very much again!

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