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Airplay 2 from ATV to SONOS surround set up


Hello to everyone,
In order to take advantage of Airplay 2 in my set up I am thinking of using an Apple TV to send sound via Airplay 2 to a Beam Bar with surrounds and sub.
I am using a beamer, that would avoid having a HDMI cable from back to front.
My question is: does using Airplay 2 for movies enables 5.1 with surrounds sound balance when sent to a Beam or Playbase?
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Best answer by Smilja 15 July 2018, 16:11

Ryan, any updates on this now that the Beam and Airplay2 is released? I just set up my Beam in a surround set up. Just curious if Airplay2 to the surround set up will give me true 5.1 surround with movies as it seems my TV only outputs stereo from HDMI-ARC.

AirPlay 2 audio is sending stereo, not 5.1 audio. Your Playbase will treat the audio the same way it plays music, so if you have the rears set to "Full" you'll hear the stereo channels played in the front and back at the same time, if it's set to "Ambient" you'll hear an upmixed sort of surround, but it's not the same way we handle normal stereo TV audio. The Playbase doesn't have a way to know what the source of your AirPlay content is, Netflix vs YouTube vs Spotify, so it treats it all as music.

https://en.community.sonos.com/home-theater-228993/airplay2-with-5-1-setup-6809350/index1.html#post16247681
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7 replies

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Hi Julien, we haven't quite shared all the details on Airplay 2 just yet, so stay tuned for more in the future as Airplay 2 on Sonos becomes available.

Generally speaking, HDMI-ARC is going to give you the best experience because you'll be able to use voice control on the Beam using CEC to do things like turning the TV on and off.
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But it would be nice to know if you can play surround with airplay 2. without cable
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Ryan, any updates on this now that the Beam and Airplay2 is released? I just set up my Beam in a surround set up. Just curious if Airplay2 to the surround set up will give me true 5.1 surround with movies as it seems my TV only outputs stereo from HDMI-ARC.
Ryan, any updates on this now that the Beam and Airplay2 is released? I just set up my Beam in a surround set up. Just curious if Airplay2 to the surround set up will give me true 5.1 surround with movies as it seems my TV only outputs stereo from HDMI-ARC.

AirPlay 2 audio is sending stereo, not 5.1 audio. Your Playbase will treat the audio the same way it plays music, so if you have the rears set to "Full" you'll hear the stereo channels played in the front and back at the same time, if it's set to "Ambient" you'll hear an upmixed sort of surround, but it's not the same way we handle normal stereo TV audio. The Playbase doesn't have a way to know what the source of your AirPlay content is, Netflix vs YouTube vs Spotify, so it treats it all as music.

https://en.community.sonos.com/home-theater-228993/airplay2-with-5-1-setup-6809350/index1.html#post16247681
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Thanks for posting this Smilja.
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So its a protocol limitation on Airplay 2? So we won't see it before Apple support 5.1 in Airplay?
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As stated, AirPlay 2 does not support 5.1. Only stereo and that’s on Apple to fix. If your tv has it, change HDMI out to DD 5.1 and it will send DD 5.1 to your Beam instead of PCM. Of course that depends on your tv make and model.