Can't join from one speaker

  • 4 September 2021
  • 5 replies

I recently moved, so I’m setting up my system again. However, I’m having a strange issue. I have 8 speakers (9 but one setup is stereo Sonos Ones), all latest generation. The main difference between this new system and my old system is that all the speakers are WiFi until I can get some wires around the house. My old house had several speakers wired (not with SonosNet).

I’m having two issues. First, sometimes one controller won’t see all the speakers. For example, my computer right now only sees 5/8 speakers, but my phone and iPad sees all. Come back an hour later, and things will change. This setup was an absolute rock for years prior (I’ve been using Sonos since the the year of their founding). I’ve toyed with STP, RSTP, rebooting switches, reboot routers, rebooting EVERYTHING, reseting speakers, etc. Nothing seems to impact that over time controllers lose speakers and then find them again.

The second issue is that I can’t reliably join. For example, I have speaker Family Room and another Master Bed. I can play each speaker individually without a problem. I can play something on Master Bed and then add Master Bed so both play the same thing. However, I can’t join the other way → Add Master Bed to Family Room. The controller will show the group as playing, but no music plays in the Master Bed.

I’m pretty technical (been running software groups for 30+ years). I have all Ubiquity network systems. My networking gear is all the same from my old house, and that system was flawless for years. There is little, if any, interference here as well. My network dashboards show signals all in the -40 to -60dBm range.


Best answer by ratty 4 September 2021, 16:38

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5 replies

Sonos may have been fine with the same Ubiquity networking gear in the old house. The fundamental difference is that before you were running the system in SonosNet (‘wired’) mode whereas now it’s dependent solely on your WiFi. That might offer a clue. At the very least you’d need to ensure that multicast/broadcast traffic is enabled everywhere. 

No, I was NOT running in SonoNet on my old system. All the speakers that were wired had Wifi disabled to prevent SonosNet. Without access to a wired speaker’s Wifi, all unwired speakers are forced onto my normal Wifi. I changed nothing in the network configuration on the firewall/router. I verified multiple times in my old system that SonosNet was not being used. I have a very high end system with multiple access points and full coverage between wired and wireless. I wanted to use that instead of SonosNet. Plus, I didn’t want SonosNet interfering with all my IoT and NoT devices throughout the house. Old house had nearly 100 devices on the network. I only have 40 or so in this house so far. Still planning the system out.


Actually there is one difference between my old network config and this one. In the old house, my 4 access points were all wired (no mesh network). In this house, I’m temporarily running with one AP meshed until I can fish a wire. I see some mention around the forums that Sonos has issues with a mesh network. I wonder if that is the issue.

So you had a forced Mixed Mode. Understood.

Beyond ensuring that all relevant traffic types can pass unhindered, and recommending that the APs share a common 2.4GHz channel so Sonos units can direct-route peer to peer, I’m unsure what more to suggest. Very high end systems sometimes need more care and attention to enable Sonos to work, whereas most lowly home networks work just fine.

I hooked up SonosNet for now until I can get my wires fished. We’ll see how that goes for a while.

Ratty, I think you may be correct. I had different APs on different channels. The strangeness seemed to be related to what AP the unit was connected to. Plus, some of the newer speakers use 5Ghz, and that seemed related.

I will give up channel 6 for a while until I can get my real system back. I try to not mix channels too much so all my switches, etc. avoid interference -- most IoT and all NoT devices are on 2.4.