Wired & Wireless

Hello all, I have a Sonos Play 5 gen 2 & two Play 3s. The wifi on the play 5 has stopped working and after many hours and exhausting every google search I can think of... I have come to terms that my very expensive speaker isn’t going to be wireless any longer. The play 5 works when its connected to ethernet. My current problem is- how do I connect my two play 3’s back into the ecosystem. The two play 3s are wireless and from my understanding they would need to run off the play 5s (now bad) wireless signal? I have had my speakers for years now and I’m starting to feel defeated by what seems like such a poor design flaw. Even if the wireless on the play 5 was operational and i needed to wire one of the speakers via ethernet due to signal issues- why would it make sense to have the other speakers connect to a speaker with poor signal (which is why you would plug it in right)? It would be nice if you could plug one speaker into ethernet while the rest of speakers connect happily to my home wifi... Hopefully I’m missing something, any advice would be much apricated. Thanks! 


Best answer by buzz 13 January 2023, 00:30

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13 replies

You could wire a BOOST to support the PLAY:3’s

Hello Buzz, thank you for your suggestion. Sorry for my poorly typed question earlier… after rereading it I may have been typing in a hurry/panic/annoyance.. my question now is, have you tried this method before? If this is my solution I’m for it. I’m just not sure I’m willing to fork out the money on another Sonos product after my play 5 experience.. unless I know this will work. Thank you again, 

Mother Nature is never fair. Anything can fail at any time. Sometimes you get lucky and a unit will last  many, many decades (a few 1950’s era HiFi units are still operating), and I’ve seen a few “new” units fail on initial power-up.

In this case you could turn OFF PLAY:5’s radio as a hedge against some weird behavior. BOOST will support the PLAY:3’s. Yes, there are cheap BRIDGE’s available, but they are near EOL (End of Life), should not be trusted, and are not S2 compatible.

Hi Buzz, I get what you mean.. Mother Nature isn’t fair.. but spending $600 dollars on a single speaker 3 years ago ($200+ a year?) and it becomes almost completely unusable (while also making another set of $600 dollars worth of speakers unusable) has nothing to do with natural selection IMO. It has everything to do with faith in a brand. If I wanted a speaker(s) that I expected to last a couple years I would have bought LG or Samsung product for half the price lol.. either way I appreciate your help and I mean no harm. Im going to look into the boost so I can just get back to listening to my music. I just wish Sonos simply had the options that allowed you to independently select the network that best suited our products needs and location. I’m not here to complain about my play 5s Wi-Fi going out I’m here trying to get my system back up and operational. Thanks again, 

It’s never fair when MY unit fails early. If you look at failure rates in general, they are much higher in the first few weeks after manufacture than they will be for the next few years, then failure rates will start to sneak up. Manufacturers build in the cost of warranty support to deal with these early failures. Longer warranty raises the initial purchase cost. At some point the cost of a very generous warranty program may push the purchase price out of the general purchase price comfort range and the product will fail to bring in enough income to support its existence.

Have you contacted SONOS Support about this issue? I can’t promise anything, but they might surprise you. Submit a diagnostic, log the confirmation number, and call Support.

Hi Buzz, My intentions when asking my question was not to complain about my malfunctioning 3 year old speaker and what is “fair”. I’ll admit I’m a bit frustrated and I suppose I may have came off as complaining about what’s “fair”. I have tried to contact Sonos on their website- with the robot chat, calling them (with weird hold times no weekends) and no email address but the CEOs I have found.. again I don’t expect “fair” treatment based on what I’ve spent on Sonos products. I’ve read the other play 5 owners and how their gen 2 Wi-Fi failed.. again I suppose you could say the amount of play 5s sold vs the number of play 5s that have failed is blah blah.. life happens. Im simply looking for a way to set my system up with one wired device and two wireless. If it’s even possible. Thanks, 

Contact phone support.

On the question of design, Sonos was designed to use its own mesh network, SonosNet, which requires one device to be wired (admittedly with a working radio).  It is generally the best way to run Sonos, especially for larger systems.  My 7-room system has been running for over 10 years like that.

If you have a failed wireless radio on the Play:5 it does NOT screw the rest of your system.  If there is no signal from the wired speaker the other speakers will just connect to WiFi as before.  Have you actually tried this?  You are completely mistaken if you think this is a problem.  As @buzz mentioned, if you want to make sure there is nothing being broadcast from the P:5, go into its settings and “Disable WiFi”.

Hi John B, I haven’t tried to disable Wi-Fi on my play 5 yet. I made (what I believe to be) a mistake and reset all three of my speakers in an attempt to set them back up. From what I’ve read now this might have made the situation worse as the play 3s have no stored Wi-Fi settings to revert back to. 

I appreciate all the help. Buzz & John B have saved the day!! Disabling the Wi-Fi on my play 5 has allowed me to reconnect both of my play 3s to my Wi-Fi!! Thank you both for the help! Take care, 

I made (what I believe to be) a mistake and reset all three of my speakers in an attempt to set them back up. From what I’ve read now this might have made the situation worse as the play 3s have no stored Wi-Fi settings to revert back to. 

In general Factory Reset is a waste of time because it does not fix fundamental issues. But, it might accidentally, temporarily work around something. Factory Reset of the whole system will trash everything. You’ll be starting from scratch with no SONOS Playlists, music service registrations, Room names, music library, or WiFi setup (if you intend to use WiFi rather than SonosNet).

Hi Buzz, you are 100% correct. Had I not panicked and reset my entire system- when only one of my devices was acting up. I would have saved hours of frustration. Like you said I have lost all of my services, room names and settings because of it. I’m still very happy with the outcome.. & although I had trouble finding a solution until you responded;  I can only hope it helps another owner in my situation find a resolution. Thanks again 

TLR: my Play 5s Wi-Fi acted up. I tried to reset the 5 multiple times no success. Reset all three devices no success. The 5 which only works on Ethernet now would not allow my play 3s to connect to the play 5s signal and join the ecosystem. Meaning my 3s would only work on Wi-Fi… or my 5 would work on Ethernet.. not together. after I reset my entire system my only working speaker was my play 5 plugged into Ethernet. Completely reset no memory of the past lol 

with the help I got here I disabled my play 5s Wi-Fi after it was set up (reset multiple times since Wi-Fi days) on Ethernet. I went into the app and pressed “add product” & it found the first 3 and did the chime thing.. and then it asked me to connect to my home Wi-Fi. I did this with the second 3 and now all three are operational.