F.A.Q.

Troubleshooting Sonos on WiFi

Troubleshooting Sonos on WiFi
Userlevel 7
Badge +18

Hi Folks, 

I’ll share some general advice about how Sonos products connect to your network, and the kind of network problems that can result in dropping rooms, to help you understand and solve some challenges with your Sonos system.

 

5GHz band

Most older Sonos devices will only connect to the 2.4GHz band, whereas some newer ones will connect to the 5GHz band broadcasted from your router. A full list of which devices will connect to 5GHz can be found here on our Sonos system requirements page, under “Products that support 802.11a/b/g/n”.

It’s important to note that all (apart from early Connect, Connect:Amp or ZP models) Sonos products have 5GHz radios, but typically reserve them for talking to each other. Home Theatre products will not connect to 5GHz, as the 5GHz radio is often busy with talking to two surrounds and a Sub. Sonos prefers to use 2.4GHz as it fundamentally has a better range and a stronger solid-matter penetration ability (it gets through walls, ceilings and furniture easier).

The problems arise when a router mistakenly identifies a Sonos product as one willing to connect to 5GHz, when it isn’t. A router feature called ‘band steering’ tries to get your Sonos speaker to connect to 5GHz as that band is typically subject to less congestion from for instance mobile phones, tablets, laptops, baby alarms, temperature controllers etc. Separating your 2.4 and 5GHz bands so they have different WiFi network names resolves this, if it’s an option (mesh systems generally don’t allow this). If in doubt, get in touch with our technical support team.

 

Mesh Networks

If you have a mesh WiFi system to extend the range of your WiFi, and your original router is still present, you must either:

  • Configure your router to act as a modem only. Some have a specific option for this (like Virgin Media in the UK), but on most router’s you’d need to disable the DHCP server. If you still need to use the WiFi coming from your router, or if you connect devices via ethernet to it, this is not an option. Doing this will allow you to use the usually more advanced routing features on your mesh (as compared to those on a free, ISP-provided router).

    or
  • Configure your mesh system to be in ‘Bridge/AP mode’ - otherwise it acts as a router and you now have two logical networks running on one hardware layer (this is commonly referred to as Dual DHCP). To find out how to do this, perform an internet search for “[name of your mesh system] mesh bridge mode”. I’ve listed a few common ones here:

 

Netgear Orbi mesh: https://kb.netgear.com/31218/How-do-I-configure-my-Orbi-router-to-act-as-an-access-point

Linksys Velop mesh: https://www.linksys.com/us/support-article?articleNum=243548

Tenda mesh: https://www.tendacn.com/faq/3123.html

Eero mesh: https://support.eero.com/hc/en-us/articles/208276903-How-do-I-bridge-my-eeros-

Google mesh: https://support.google.com/wifi/answer/6240987

In my experience Google meshes can be difficult about going into Bridge mode. Please contact Google if you have trouble with this. If you’re thinking of buying a mesh system, I personally advise avoiding Google Mesh for this reason.

 

Extenders / Boosters / Powerline adapters / Sky Q

Another challenge, with networking and Sonos, is WiFi boosters and extenders. Sonos does not support these as they halve your available bandwidth (due to being half-duplex) and often block multicast transmissions which gets in the way of the Sonos system from operating smoothly. 

Powerline line adaptors can also induce additional issues as they are subject to noise present on your mains power supply (‘noise’ is created by some LED dimmers, for example).

In the UK, Sky Q boxes can be a challenge with Sonos, as they repeat the WiFi from a Sky router (not from other routers). If a speaker connects to one of these (common with Sonos Home Theatre products) it can result in the speaker being missing from the Sonos app. To get the speaker to show in the Sonos app, you need to disable the 2.4 GHz broadcast of WiFi from the Sky Q box(es). You can go into the Sky Q’s engineer’s menu (highlight Settings, press 0,0,1, then select Settings), go to Network and toggle 2.4 GHz wireless to OFF then click Confirm. If you do this make sure you leave the 5 GHz on so that the boxes can connect to each other. As with above (in 5 GHz section), you’ll need to split the bands to differently named WiFis in the router’s settings. If you have Sonos devices that are willing to use 5GHz (see above, under 5GHz band), you may not be able to bypass this issue without using SonosNet.

 

Sonos and Ethernet

To bypass most WiFi configuration issues, you can connect any one (or more) Sonos devices to the network with an ethernet cable (Sonos Move & Roam excluded). Wired Sonos products will transmit a ‘Sonos only WiFi’ for use by your other Sonos devices (Sonos Move & Roam excluded). This all happens automatically, but sometimes your speakers need a power cycle (unplug them from the wall socket, and plug them back in again after 30 seconds) to help them along. Wiring Sonos will not resolve anything if you have two routers on your network (as described in the Meshes section). Each Sonos player that picks up the ‘Sonos only WiFi’ from the wired Sonos speaker will rebroadcast it, thus extending the range for speakers out of range of the wired one(s). 

When you wire a Sonos product, you go from a configuration like this:

Sonos using your WiFi​​​​

to one like this:

Sonos using Sonosnet

 

WiFi Noise / WiFi interference

Sometimes it’s just not a network configuration issue. All WiFi devices (not just Sonos) like to have at least 1 meter / 3 feet of space from all other WiFi devices (and devices that are not on your WiFi but may use similar frequencies). In my experience, one of the most common solutions to a ‘WiFi problem’ has been to physically move a speaker/Boost/Bridge farther away from the router it’s wired to. A common misconception is that the closer the device is to the WiFi broadcasting unit the better - this is not the case. Sometimes a speaker lived very close the router but wasn’t wired - these devices were often kept centimetres apart from each other. We have a helpful guide on reducing wireless interference. Close by glass or metal surfaces can reflect WiFi back at a device and also create interference. 

Interference is, I would say, the biggest cause of problems, like dropped rooms, or music interruptions, for Sonos users.

 

Controllers

It may be that you cannot connect to Sonos not because your Sonos system is having trouble connecting to the network, but because the device you’re running the Sonos app on is unable to communicate with the System (or parts of it).

Although this can be caused by a few things, the most likely are the following:

  • Multiple Access Points - WiFi boosters and Extenders tend not to work very well. Often, you can only connect to rooms that also connect to the same extender your phone is on, or can’t connect to them because your phone is on the main router’s WiFi. We don’t support the use of these products for the reason. Mesh systems are not affected by this. In the UK, Sky Q boxes repeat WiFi from Sky routers in this way.
  • Guest WiFi - You cannot run Sonos on a Guest WiFi, nor can the Sonos app connect to a Sonos system if the controller is connected to a Guest WiFi.
  • On iOS devices - make sure you give the Sonos app permission to access devices on the Local Network. https://support.sonos.com/s/article/3092
  • On iOS devices - make to to disable Private Address in the iOS connection options for your WiFi network.

 

Help

Sometimes, no matter how much you know, the speakers themselves have to be ‘consulted’ as to what is wrong before you will find a resolution. In such situations, the only solution is to get in touch with our technical support team who can receive your Sonos system diagnostics which will tell the agent all about what your system has experienced. If you’re going to call/chat with our tech agents, please try to recreate the issue you are experiencing just before getting in touch, if you can, and try not to reboot any players - reboots clear the system logs and as a result the diagnostics contain less information. 

 

I hope this helps you to understand a bit of what’s going on when no steps taken seem to be working for you. As always, we’re more than happy to assist with getting your Sonos system stable, so please either get in touch with our tech support if nothing works, or write here on the community if you need more guidance.

 

 

Edit: Updated to include additional mesh options, Roam and some other details.

Edit: Updated to include iPhone Local Network and Private Addresses options as they can affect connecting to Sonos


42 replies

Thanks, Ken. I will give it all a try when I’m feeling lucky! I appreciate the help!

Yes! The “Boost”. My bad. Thanks for catching that.

Ah that’s okay 👍 see if the linked thread assists - it’s basically a case of having your router in bridge mode. The Google Nest in router mode, with its satellite Hubs. Then wire just the Boost to the primary Nest/Router only (do not wire anything to the satellite hubs).

In the Sonos App ‘Settings/System/Networks’ area set the SonosNet channel to one that is not used by the Google WiFi. I would also remove your WiFi SSID/credentials from that area of the Sonos App too when you have all up and running.

Hope that assists.

Yes! The “Boost”. My bad. Thanks for catching that.

This forum is the closest I can find to the subject of my question, so I’ll post it here.

I have a dozen or so Sonos products including surround sound setup with Beam (2nd gen), a sub and two 3’s for rear speakers and various 1’s around the rest of the house. I installed a Google mesh system with the ISP’s cable going right into a Google node (no ISP router). Three other Google “nodes” around the house and all show strong signal and 80+Mbps speed.

However, occasionally a Sonos speaker will cut out or take its time coming online after being selected. One tech support person suggested a Sonos “Connect” may be helpful. I bought one but after reading this thread, I’m a bit afraid to try it and I’m tempted to leave well enough alone!

The question is: should I include the “connect” in the system and if so, how? Do I just plug the Connect into one of the Google nodes in the middle of the house? If so, which connection point on the node?

Thanks for any insights.

Firstly do you mean a Sonos ‘Boost’ rather than a ‘Connect’ - A ‘Connect’ is ‘usually’ used for connecting external audio sources to a Sonos system, like a Turntable or CD player etc?

Anyhow, perhaps have a read of this thread from Sonos Staff and first see if that assists you:

Sonos on WiFi Mesh

This forum is the closest I can find to the subject of my question, so I’ll post it here.

I have a dozen or so Sonos products including surround sound setup with Beam (2nd gen), a sub and two 3’s for rear speakers and various 1’s around the rest of the house. I installed a Google mesh system with the ISP’s cable going right into a Google node (no ISP router). Three other Google “nodes” around the house and all show strong signal and 80+Mbps speed.

However, occasionally a Sonos speaker will cut out or take its time coming online after being selected. One tech support person suggested a Sonos “Connect” may be helpful. I bought one but after reading this thread, I’m a bit afraid to try it and I’m tempted to leave well enough alone!

The question is: should I include the “connect” in the system and if so, how? Do I just plug the Connect into one of the Google nodes in the middle of the house? If so, which connection point on the node?

Thanks for any insights.

 

 

Userlevel 7
Badge +18

Hi @Direwolf 

You guys are all techies and can barely figure this out.  For the novice, we got no shot.  This product - many years later, is so far from plug and play.  In a wireless world, this product is terrible  

For the majority of users, Sonos is plug-and-play, and works out of the box. However, Sonos systems (due to the nature of the task they perform) utilise their host network in a way that many other devices do not, and therefore can highlight issues not readily apparent from other use-cases. We are here to help, however, as is our fantastic community - if you are having trouble with a particular issue, please create a new thread at Ask A Question, and I’m sure you will get the help you need.

You guys are all techies and can barely figure this out.  For the novice, we got no shot.  This product - many years later, is so far from plug and play.  In a wireless world, this product is terrible  

Badge

Hi @WilsonLane 

The only way a device will not take whatever IP address the router decides it should get is if it has been manually configured to ask for a specific IP. Given that you can’t tell Sonos devices to do this, your Eero is entirely responsible for the IP addresses assigned to Sonos devices. As mentioned in some of the replies here, manual assignment of IP addresses in your network can make things more stable, but this would need to be done in your Eero configuration app/page.

Even though your Sonos system works well, it may be worth getting in touch with our technical support team, as diagnostics will be able to tell us if any devices on the network are being assigned IP addresses that Sonos is already using, or if there is any sign of multicast flooding on your network.

I hope this helps.

Hi all, first post here so please go gentle on me.

 

I have a handful of Sonos gear, Play:1s, 3s, 5s and a Connect:Amp running on S2.  All of my devices are running wireless, on their own ‘Sonos’ SSID.  They’re also running across 3 or 4 access points (TP-Link Omada), and all devices are fixed-DHCP on my router.

 

The wireless network is technically NOT a mesh setup, although two APs do mesh together (wireless connection from my office to my workshop), however all APs share the same WLAN configurations (SSIDs, security etc).  Protable devices like phones and tablets can switch from AP to AP without issue or user knowledge.  Aside from the occasionall weak wi-fi signal strength (the Connect:Amp is in my workshop, the AP is outside - metal walls not so good for wi-fi),  I’ve found the set up to be almost 100% stable.  Interestingly the Sonos devices connect to the wireless networks in a mixture of 2.4 & 5GHz.  I assuming this is dictated by the proximity to the AP.

 

As mentioned above, I’ve used the TP-Link Omada system: this makes the multiple APs within my wireless network ‘look like one’.  However, what it really does is:

     Easily configures all APs to have the same SSID, security

     Centralises control of your WLAN

     Makes adding/replacing/removing an AP easy

I think what you could do, if you have more than one AP (say, Router WLAN plus a second wired AP), is to simply replicate the SSID and security on the second AP.  I did this when one on of my Omada APs died and the SONOS gear kept working fine.  Maybe this was the SONOSNET bit doing its job, I’m not sure.  But at least on SONOS device cannot connect to any other SONOS device and this one kept working fine on the temporary AP.

Anyway, what I wanted to do was pass on an example of a multi-AP, multi-SSID WLAN across several buildings where SONOS devices, all wirelessly connected, are working quite well.  This is not to gloat, just to give someone who has some struggles confidence they’ll work it out.  I have been fortunate that I’ve not had significant challenges, but here’s an overview of my network configuration.  I hope it might be of benefit to you.

     Router - configured for Fixed DHCP for all usual devices (think phones, computers, SONOS                  devices etc)

     WLAN - SSID ‘Sonos”, SPA-Personal security (I don’t have neighbours close by)

     APs in service - 4

     SONOS devices - 7, shared across 3 or 4 APs as determined by WLAN management

     Two of the SONOS devices are operating ‘individually’, that is, they cannot possibly connect to             another SONOS device other than across ‘my networks’.

 

As above, I think the main points of my excessive post are go for Fixed DHCP on your router; these speakers don’t move so lock in their IP address, and if you’re running multiple APs, configure the same SSID across all of them.  Most APs will handle a couple of SSIDs at least, so this should be kinda straight forward to sort out.

 

Disclaimer - I don’t have/use propriety mesh systems like Google Mesh or Orbi etc.  What I’ve described may or may not be possible on these systems.

 

Good luck with your set up.  Reply if you like; if you have questions I’ll try to answer them.

Kind Regards.

Userlevel 3
Badge +5

I had the same issue as you many years back and traced it to the unmanaged switch that all of the SONOS and other equipment was connected to that required STP / RSTP to be active. The system worked fine until certain devices were turned on and then a “Ethernet Broadcast Storm” occurred which caused the entire network (Wired and Wireless) to fail.

The solution was to have all of the wired SONOS products connected to a managed Ethernet Switch with proper STP / RSTP configuration.

My configuration is Xfinity XB7 Modem -- TP-LINK Managed Switch - Main Switch - TP-LINK Managed Switch - Home Office - TP-LINK Managed Switch - Living Room. I have most of my SONOS equipment connected to the three TP-LINK Managed Switches. The other SONOS devices are connected to the SONOS Net. In addition, I also have the latest generation XFINITY Pods to increase the wireless range of the Xfinity XB7 Modem. All of the network cable is CAT5E.

WilsonLane,

I recommend using a network scanner, such as FING. The scanner can help find duplicate IP addresses. I strongly recommend reserving IP addresses for all regular network clients. Note that the scan can only find current duplicates, not future duplicates created by devices that are presently offline.

Userlevel 7
Badge +18

Hi @WilsonLane 

The only way a device will not take whatever IP address the router decides it should get is if it has been manually configured to ask for a specific IP. Given that you can’t tell Sonos devices to do this, your Eero is entirely responsible for the IP addresses assigned to Sonos devices. As mentioned in some of the replies here, manual assignment of IP addresses in your network can make things more stable, but this would need to be done in your Eero configuration app/page.

Even though your Sonos system works well, it may be worth getting in touch with our technical support team, as diagnostics will be able to tell us if any devices on the network are being assigned IP addresses that Sonos is already using, or if there is any sign of multicast flooding on your network.

I hope this helps.

This was one of the most insightful posts I've ever read. Thank you. 

 

I'm running a large network with over 200 devices and lots of Sonos. Everything Sonos related is actually running fine, but something is creating some kind of wonkiness with other devices on the network. 

Ive been isolating different clients and when I powered up the Sonos it impacted the sync of a bunch of 2.4 GHz smart light switches. So this post really helped me better understand. 

 

Here's my topology, do you think there is anyway Sonos could create a switch loop? Is there anyway a wired speaker could accidentally be connected wirelessly at the same time? The Eero people think some type of hub or router is on my network that's changing IPs. 

 

 

 

​​​​​​Modem Bridge > Eero PRO6 > Unmanaged Dedicated Sonos Switch > (11Amps, 5 Arc, 4 Beams gen2, 2 Subs G3, 1 Sub G1, Playbar, and 2 Play 1s). All speakers are wired expect for the 2 play 1s. And one sub is wireless currently. 

Sonos is working great. But trying to figure out what's causing some other network instability when it's on. Let me know if anyone has any thoughts or experiments I should try? 

 

Userlevel 7
Badge +18

Hi @Bluesden 

Thank you for sharing that - I’m sure someone will find it extremely helpful!

I’ll add my experience with Nest (Google) mesh and S1 products in case it helps someone:

When setting up for the first time with a mesh system make sure you setup the Sonos products with only the mesh router operational.  No mesh points or nodes powered on. Trying to set up Sonos products via mesh points has caused me all sorts of issues.  It seems (from my experience) the Sonos products need a direct mesh router connection to configure correctly.  This doesn’t have to be wired.  Wireless worked just fine for me.

Once all Sonos units have configured via the mesh router and are connected to the mesh wireless, moving them around the house and having them connect to the mesh via points or nodes works with no issue at all (so far) :-)

 

It’s the original design of the system. However, if you’re experiencing no issues, I’d suggest leaving it alone. 

I have all my devices (Arc, 2 SL’s and sub) hardwired and have WiFi disabled on all devices. Never had any issues. But I was told once by support while on the phone with them on a different subject that I should not be going 100% wired and only to attach the arc as wired and let everything else be wireless. Any thoughts as to why they suggested that?

Hello,

I have a Eero mesh network and have tried the troubleshooting steps above, putting the mesh network into bridge mode but my living room setup (beam, sub and 2x one SL) still disappears from the sonos app everyday! At least once A day I have to search for missing products or update the network on my living room surround setup so that it returns to the app. 
This has been ongoing for about a month now, nothing has changed on my network. As a worst case scenario, yesterday I factory restored the whole living room and still the living room disappears from my app. 
 

please help!!

Try a reserved or static IP. This fixes issues like this regularly when we come across systems that we haven’t installed. See our video below that details this and other fixes. Static IP starts at around 5:20.

 

 

 

Userlevel 7
Badge +22

It’s a  speaker system, for god’s sake.  Either get a PhD or buy something off the shelf that works.  There are some good options out there.  Personally, I like to use my equipment, not fiddle with it all the time.  What is the big deal with Sonos beyond getting an inherently problematic system to produce sound.  If you like getting beaten-up join the WWF.   

No, its a networked speaker system. It requires a network that functions correctly, and that is often a challenge for some hardware/configurations.

And this is the first post you have ever made on the forum. Nice.

It’s a  speaker system, for god’s sake.  Either get a PhD or buy something off the shelf that works.  There are some good options out there.  Personally, I like to use my equipment, not fiddle with it all the time.  What is the big deal with Sonos beyond getting an inherently problematic system to produce sound.  If you like getting beaten-up join the WWF.   

Userlevel 7
Badge +22

I know the PC is not very cool these days but it might deserve a mention here: a common issue with the PC app not finding any players is if the WiFi network is not marked as Private. Windows will block all inter-device traffic if a Wifi network is marked Public.

The official instructions for switching the type of a network are here: https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/make-a-wi-fi-network-public-or-private-in-windows-0460117d-8d3e-a7ac-f003-7a0da607448d

hi @Corry P my UniFi system was configured with your suggested settings, except for the IGMP Snooping since that needs an UniFi switch. However, I have now ‘Point to Point‘ and ‘P2P Cross Connect’ enabled in the wireless network settings and my perception is that this has improved the behaviour of the SONOS devices.

 

after some months experience I can confirm that my UniFi system and Sonos devices still behave well and AirPlay is stable - moreover, I have observed that none of my Sonos wireless connected speakers are ‘visible’ in the UniFi Network clients list, except for the Sonos Roam - I believe this is related to the SonosNet (on channel 6) connectivity - all Sonos wire connected device are visible though - all Sonos devices (wired and wireless) have an IP Address with WM:0 except for the Sonos Roam (using 11ac (5GHz) - channel 40) that has WM:1

 

Thanks @Ken_Griffiths 

I’m glad you find it helpful!

@Corry P maybe time to write a dedicated FAQ for meshed wifi networks only and list the do’s and don’ts - I notice more users are getting meshed networks in their premise 

 
 

Might be helpful if you were to also list the source of the music, as the streaming companies that have authorized Sonos to stream in Singapore may not have authorized Sonos to do streaming in the Philippines yet. Also, I’d suggest you submit a system diagnostic , and call Sonos Support to discuss it.

There may be information included in the diagnostic that will help Sonos pinpoint the issue and help you find a solution.

When you speak directly to the phone folks, they have tools at their disposal that will allow them to give you advice specific to your Sonos system and network.

Hi I'm Lanz,

 

Recently I went back to my country the Philippines and have my Sonos Ikea symfonisk speaker transported also to Philippines from Singapore from where I used to work.

In Singapore I have been using the symfonisk speaker very well and it was really great! But when I set it up at home in the Philippines, I have changed/set up to the new router even connected the device there and plugged but when all is connected there is an error that keeps me from playing music and the error message shows like this.."unable to play music"...."error occurred while adding your music to the queue, error(701)".…

Please acknowledge my inquiry, i don't want to end up keeping my Sonos away in box for being useless.

I also went in and out of my phone's settings and app permissions and yet it still not resolved.

Userlevel 7
Badge +18

Thanks @Ken_Griffiths 

I’m glad you find it helpful!

Reply