NO DTS on NEW PlayBase and thats not due to hardware limitations.

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"But home theater enthusiasts might be disappointed with some of the technical details. For one, the Playbase doesn’t support DTS multichannel audio. Neither does the Playbar. Here’s what a company spokesperson had to say about that decision (emphasis ours):

For home entertainment, DTS content is only found on physical media such as DVD, Blu-ray and Laserdisc – no video streaming services such as Netflix or Hulu support DTS. Sonos is focused on modern listeners who predominantly stream and because most physical discs encode DTS at bitrates substantially similar to Dolby Digital, we have decided to not support DTS on PLAYBASE as we don’t believe it offers a better listening experience for the majority of owners."

I really love my SONOS system. The sound is indeed great, but I cannot understand how it comes that SONOS isn’t paying any attention to all the users that have been claiming for DTS support for years now.

Apparently, they don’t plan to support anytime soon because they are affirming that SONOS is made for the modern users that uses streaming and no streaming service offers DTS at the moment. Ah they also said on the interview that there is not much difference on DTS sound.

SONOS was one of the first speakers to support Hi-Fi and always have been on the vanguard for audiophiles. I really think that these comments are discrepant and are at least conflicting with the company’s past. I really hope that SONOS reconsider.

There is also a segment about HDMI support on the article.

“While newer HDMI standards such as HDMI ARC and CEC promise increased control functionality, they are unlikely to be found on TVs that are several years old and are still implemented in a fragmented way across newer TV models,” the Sonos spokesperson said. “We continue to monitor the state of HDMI audio implementations in the market for future roadmap products.” 

Apparently, we cannot expect SONOS to be on the vanguard anymore.

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43 replies

I am not defending Sonos at all. I love their products for playing music but their home theater offering doesn't exist in my mind. This is why I have never purchased a Play Bar. I'm sorry your friend invested and is disappointed but this problem has been present for many years and it is no a secret. At some level, there should be some personal responsibility to know what you are buying BEFORE you spend the money. Returning products because you were too lazy to understand what you were buying is unethical. Sonos deciding not to support a specific feature is not. FWIW, some people do real-time conversion of DTS to DD and others go through their TV's and output to the Play Bar. As I understand it, most TVs won't output DTS (another one of Sonos's excuses).

As for why Sonos isn't supporting DTS, I heard somewhere there were issues supporting DTS using wireless transmissions. I have no idea if this is a technical reason, something in DTS's spec requirements, or just an excuse not to pay the royalties. Whatever the reason, like you, DTS is important to me and the lack of support is why Sonos is not a home theater company (in my mind). Sonos is a premium brand, not supporting standard audio formats is a bit embarrassing if you ask me. From what I understand, they don't handle high bit-rate FLAC files either...if that is important to you.

All we can do is voice our opinion and hope someone listens. Sonos is by no means required to be what you or I want them to be. Although, personally, I would buy more of their products if they were. I can be disappointed but I am not going to be mad at them. That doesn't help anyone.
I have invested heavily in Sonos equipment over the years. New Play5, 4 Play1’s and my 5.1 set up. The lack of DTS support has frustrated me for years. Now with more and more BluRays only supporting DTS I’m no longer able to put up with the lack of DTS support. I’m in the process of selling it all!

Sonos lack of foresight and giving the customer what it wants means they are losing potential customers. Friends, colleagues and family come to me all the time asking for my advice on technology. 4 have asked me about the Sonos Playbar and I’ve had to steer them to alternative brands because playing a simple BluRay is becoming harder to achieve. It is just downright disappointing.

SONOS was one of the first speakers to support Hi-Fi...

No, certainly not.
I agree, it sucks that there is no DTS support. I have looked up and down for a good sound bar for my bedroom.. I can’t find anything that has a sub that looks like it will hold a candle to the SONOS sub, which is a huge deal with TV/Movies. The 14# Denon sub woundnt stand a chance in my large room. I will likely never connect a DVD to my bedroom, everything will be streamed with Apple TV or cable. Down to Sonos, Samsung Atmos(I get they steaming would be unlikely to use Atmos but curious about it) and Klipsch 3.1 systems.
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Lack of DTS is a worry. I was of a mind to finally upgrade my TV next year and get a blu-Ray player as well. A play base would have come after that.
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sonos saying they support modern customers with 1979 dolby digital support. I paid for a premium product that they cant be bothered to update to allow increased functionality. money grabbing bastards.
Wake up Sonos - Add DTS and you’ll sell a whole bunch more units - the ROI will be a no- brainer.
Ditto. Just found this out as my playbar just would not produce sound from a movie file with dts audio while my TV speakers do. Super disappointed
I am moving into a new place in a few months, and was strongly considering Sonos 5.1 surround for my new 4K TV and 4K Blu-Ray. After discovering that Sonos will not support DTS, it is extremely unlikely that I'll be able to purchase this product. Hopefully Sonos will change course and introduce DTS into its Playbar.
I bought the Playbar recently to accompany my new Sony 4K TV, admittedly enjoying the sound, but cannot get away from the fact that as a premium product it should have DTS; having already found a few things that steadfastly refuse to play, because of course, they’re DTS. I really want to know, if it’s possible for them to just add this at a later date to current hardware (via software)? As things stand I will be returning it and sticking with my ageing Pioneer LX03 that many years ago, supported DTS and every known format at the time!
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It seems to me that moving with the times and utilising the latest technology is not one of SONOS' strong suits; neither is listening to their customers.

If you contact them in regards to a Playbar 2 with multiple HDMI ports instead of an optical only cable and DTS compatibility, they will deny that their customers have ever requested this and tell you that an 'optical cable is the future because of streaming content like Netflix' - both of which are simply not true. I can only speak for myself, but my Netflix and Amazon accounts stream from my player via an HDMI connection to my TV, and it's the output that is then limited by the use of the stupid optical cable!

HDMI is the standard, optical cables are archaic - there's not a huge range of TVs which even support a basic 5.1 input/output through an optical cable (most only do 2.0) and even then it's often compressed.

You also only have to spend 5 minutes searching the boards to realise HDMI ports and DTS compatibility are two of the most requested features.

Unfortunately SONOS are a bit like Apple: they're not interested in what their customers want, they hear what they want to, and they prefer to dictate. Their customer service has always been pretty lamentable in my experience.
I rarely count on CSRs who answer the phones to know and give necessary corporate strategy information. The simple fact is, we don't know what Sonos is planning, nor is it likely that we will know until they have some sort of announcement. It would equally be questionable if the CEO would be to announce their company's roadmap for other competitors to copy.
I just hope they will do something about it. Its simply annoying I have a lot of digital files that I stream to my tv that have DTS and none of them produce sound... I agree with some of the other comments that I should have known this and read through the specs before buying but its such a big minus point. Makes the playbar a lot less enjoyable
This kinda news make me wanna sell all my Sonos stuff...
I own various Play 3 and Play 5 Gen 2 speakers around my home and are very happy with them. I have been reading all these posts about the DTS problem and i agree with most people, why on earth would sonos come out with a Playbar or Playbase that does not support DTS? A high end home cinema product with a high price tag that is very limited regarding what it can decode.

I have a denon AVR amp that im using that has all the Codecs you need paired with the Q Acoustics 7000i speaker package, which is cheaper in cost and offers better connectivity. I was looking to downsize to just use a soundbar, wireless sub and a couple of wireless speakers. After reading this about the Playbar and this DTS problem im now looking at the Bose Soundtouch 300 as it is better value for money for what you get overall. The Bose Soundtouch accepts DTS signals, has HDMI and is similar priced.

From reading the posts it looks to me that sonos dont care what people think and are only doing what they want to do. Come on Sonos listen to your existing customers. All i can say is Sonos you have lost a sale from me.
I love my playbarand other Sonos devices i have, i'm kinda early adaptor, but i'm disappointed in the fact that there is no DTS support. I was looking for some workaround but apperantly there is none available..

in my search i found on youtube an explanation from a Sonos employee why there is no DTS support...For those who can understand german ;)
Netflix streams audio in DD+ which is not supported over toslink, only HDMI. Not supporting HDMI is such a bad choice.

According to Wikipedia , TOSLink does support DD+, just not the uncompressed version of DD+. I find it highly unlikely Netfilx streams uncompressed DD+
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Plex is a streaming service. Plex uses DTS. Please support DTS.