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Sonos Beam plus 2x Sonos one Dolby 5.1 optical out?

  • 12 September 2018
  • 13 replies
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I am thinking of buying a Sonos Beam plus another Sonos one to add to my Sonos One to create surround sound from my Samsung tv. I have a PS3 into my hdmi1 which l use as my dvd/blue ray player.
I have asked Samsung if my UE55 7500 will pass through using hdmi arc, they have said no it will have to be via optical, which l believe the Beam has via an adapter supplied? So l am assuming l will achieve playback of both tv and PS3 via optical into the Sonos?
My questions are
1) How will the Sonos Beam interact with tv, ie will l have to switch them on separately and control volume separately?
2) what kind of surround sound will l achieve, will it be Dolby 5.1 with different channels coming out of the two rear placed Ones and the Beam carrying centre left and right front?
3) Can you deactivate Alexa so that only one is the master?
4) la there any other question l should be asking or problem others have come across?
Any helpful advice would be great fully received, my Yamaha YSP2500 has developed a fault and rather than repair, as it would only pair intermitantly through arc, l am thinking of going the Sonos route.
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Best answer by AjTrek1 12 September 2018, 21:58

Hi Riggman
My answers are in bold below your questions. Enjoy your Sonos. Cheers!

1) How will the Sonos Beam interact with tv, ie will l have to switch them on separately and control volume separately?
The Sonos Beam is always on.
2) what kind of surround sound will l achieve, will it be Dolby 5.1 with different channels coming out of the two rear placed Ones and the Beam carrying centre left and right front?
The Beam will process L/C/R channels and send surround material to the Sonos One's. You'll effectively enjoy DD5.0 less the Sonos sub which would provide DD5.1
3) Can you deactivate Alexa so that only one is the master?
You can turn Alexa off on the Sonos One's by deactivating the mic icons
4) la there any other question l should be asking or problem others have come across?
Just make sure your TV is cable of passing DD5.1 over optical
.
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13 replies

1) The beam cannot control the TV when using the optical as input.

2) Yes, that is how 5.1 will played.

3) Yes, but it is not configurable. The Beam is always the master, the Ones will have Alexa deactivated.

4) Not really. It sounds like you know that DD 5.1 is the only codec you can use, no DTS, DD+, etc.
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Hi Riggman
My answers are in bold below your questions. Enjoy your Sonos. Cheers!

1) How will the Sonos Beam interact with tv, ie will l have to switch them on separately and control volume separately?
The Sonos Beam is always on.
2) what kind of surround sound will l achieve, will it be Dolby 5.1 with different channels coming out of the two rear placed Ones and the Beam carrying centre left and right front?
The Beam will process L/C/R channels and send surround material to the Sonos One's. You'll effectively enjoy DD5.0 less the Sonos sub which would provide DD5.1
3) Can you deactivate Alexa so that only one is the master?
You can turn Alexa off on the Sonos One's by deactivating the mic icons
4) la there any other question l should be asking or problem others have come across?
Just make sure your TV is cable of passing DD5.1 over optical
.
Thanks for the knowledgeable responses, l must say l am impressed.
Having read on the forums about pass through l was very specific about Dolby 5.1 to Samsung and their response was yes but it had to be via optical.
Cheers and thank you once again....
Does anyone have the Beam and 2x Ones set as suround surround and can give their opinion on the sound separation and the overall quality of the experience?
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I have the Beam and 2 Play:1s which is going to sound very similar. I am very happy with the experience overall. How good it sounds depends a lot on the material when it comes to TV audio. As far a music goes, I love the full stereo setting, giving you stereo out of the rear speakers. Even better after trueplay tuning.
Thanks for the information, perhaps l should have also asked when playing from a dvd or blue ray source in near 5.1?
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Does anyone have the Beam and 2x Ones set as suround surround and can give their opinion on the sound separation and the overall quality of the experience?

I have the Playbar while not as sophisticated as the Beam it will play louder with better separation (L/C/R) as it should. The Beam was designed for use in a smaller environment and will most likely sound better in a room (i.e. bedroom) rather than in an open area like a family room that passes through to a kitchen. Then there are some living room / family rooms that are enclosed on at least 3 sides. I should add that LOUDER doesn't always translate into better. At some point LOUDER is just that_a bunch of irrigating noise.

At the end of the day it all comes down to YOUR ear and room acoustics which fortunately can be compensated for by using True Play in the Sonos App (requires an iOS device). On the other hand you have the option to purchase a Beam and a Playbar/Playbase (assuming size isn't an issue) from a retailer with a liberal return policy and keep the one you like the best. However, if you want the Beam for its sophistication then the Playbar/Playbase option is a non-starter.

The One's will sound the same in surround mode bonded to a Beam, Playbar or Playbase.

Remember, you can only achieve DD5.1 via a Sonos sub being added to the mix. I hope this helps.

Cheers!
Thanks once again for the informative feedback, it has helped me greatly.
Cheers
Hi there,

I have Beam + 2xOne.
How to exactly connect PS3, TV and Beam to have DD5.0, should I connect PS3 to TV via HDMI and optical from PS3 to Beam? Thanks in advance. Regards.
No. The PS3 would connect to an HDMI port on the TV. The Beam would connect either to an HDMI-ARC port, or (with the adapter) to the optical output on the TV. Then you have to make sure that both the TV, and the PS3 are set up to pass through Dolby Digital signals, so you can get the 5.0 you're looking for. Then you could connect other devices to the TV, and get the same benefit, like a cable box, or DVD player, etc. If the TV doesn't pass through a Dolby Digital signal to the optical port, then you could potentially connect the Beam with the optical cable to the PS3 (assuming it has an optical port?)

The other option you'd have is an HDMI switch, which has an optical output on it. You could then connect it to your TV via HDMI, and any source devices you have would connect to the switch, and the optical output would go to the Beam.
No. The PS3 would connect to an HDMI port on the TV. The Beam would connect either to an HDMI-ARC port, or (with the adapter) to the optical output on the TV. Then you have to make sure that both the TV, and the PS3 are set up to pass through Dolby Digital signals, so you can get the 5.0 you're looking for. Then you could connect other devices to the TV, and get the same benefit, like a cable box, or DVD player, etc. If the TV doesn't pass through a Dolby Digital signal to the optical port, then you could potentially connect the Beam with the optical cable to the PS3 (assuming it has an optical port?)

The other option you'd have is an HDMI switch, which has an optical output on it. You could then connect it to your TV via HDMI, and any source devices you have would connect to the switch, and the optical output would go to the Beam.


Many thanks, Bruce for your help but still I have an issue, maybe there is a problem with the source because I am trying to use Blu-ray disc with 5.1 DTS?
Greetings
Michael
No. The PS3 would connect to an HDMI port on the TV. The Beam would connect either to an HDMI-ARC port, or (with the adapter) to the optical output on the TV. Then you have to make sure that both the TV, and the PS3 are set up to pass through Dolby Digital signals, so you can get the 5.0 you're looking for. Then you could connect other devices to the TV, and get the same benefit, like a cable box, or DVD player, etc. If the TV doesn't pass through a Dolby Digital signal to the optical port, then you could potentially connect the Beam with the optical cable to the PS3 (assuming it has an optical port?)

The other option you'd have is an HDMI switch, which has an optical output on it. You could then connect it to your TV via HDMI, and any source devices you have would connect to the switch, and the optical output would go to the Beam.


Many thanks, Bruce for your help but still I have an issue, maybe there is a problem with the source because I am trying to use Blu-ray disc with 5.1 DTS?
Greetings
Michael

If it’s the later slim version of the PS3 with 4.83 (latest) software you can get the PS3 to convert the audio on the fly to DD5.1.

Go to sound settings —> audio output settings —> HDMI —> manual —> select DOLBY DIGITAL 5.1 Ch. and LPCM 2 ch 44.1 kHz and save those as the audio output settings.

If you have the old style fat PS3, I think your out of luck and will need to route it through a device that converts DTS to DD 5.1 on the fly... or you will have to stick to using PCM stereo until such time as you upgrade your PS3 to a later model.

Hope that helps.
No. The PS3 would connect to an HDMI port on the TV. The Beam would connect either to an HDMI-ARC port, or (with the adapter) to the optical output on the TV. Then you have to make sure that both the TV, and the PS3 are set up to pass through Dolby Digital signals, so you can get the 5.0 you're looking for. Then you could connect other devices to the TV, and get the same benefit, like a cable box, or DVD player, etc. If the TV doesn't pass through a Dolby Digital signal to the optical port, then you could potentially connect the Beam with the optical cable to the PS3 (assuming it has an optical port?)

The other option you'd have is an HDMI switch, which has an optical output on it. You could then connect it to your TV via HDMI, and any source devices you have would connect to the switch, and the optical output would go to the Beam.


Many thanks, Bruce for your help but still I have an issue, maybe there is a problem with the source because I am trying to use Blu-ray disc with 5.1 DTS?
Greetings
Michael

If it’s the later slim version of the PS3 with 4.83 (latest) software you can get the PS3 to convert the audio on the fly to DD5.1.

Go to sound settings —> audio output settings —> HDMI —> manual —> select DOLBY DIGITAL 5.1 Ch. and LPCM 2 ch 44.1 kHz and save those as the audio output settings.

If you have the old style fat PS3, I think your out of luck and will need to route it through a device that converts DTS to DD 5.1 on the fly... or you will have to stick to using PCM stereo until such time as you upgrade your PS3 to a later model.

Hope that helps.


Many thanks, Ken, yep I have the old one, but it's good to know that the problem is with my PS3 :)
Greetings