Integrate Sonos with pre-wired in-wall speaker system.

  • 8 January 2019
  • 2 replies
  • 318 views

I am trying to find the best (affordable) way to integrate Sonos with my already pre-wired family room sound system.

What I have:
- 2 rear speakers (pre-wired but not installed yet) with wall volume control.
- 2 patio speakers (pre-wired but not installed yet) with wall volume control.
- All cabling for these speakers running under TV
- 2 Sonos Play 1's in other areas of the house.
- Onkyo dual zone stereo receiver.

What I want:
- The ability to play music via Sonos to all 4 in-wall speakers in family room and patio. And other Play 1's.
- The ability to hear my TV sound coming out of all 4 in-wall speakers as well as other Play 1's.

My thoughts:
- Connect the 4 in wall speakers (family room & patio) to my current stereo receiver. Also connect my TV's digital audio out to that stereo receiver as well. At this point, TV audio should be playing from 4 speakers which I can split into speakers A or B. Then connect that current stereo receiver to a Sonos Connect. I think this will turn those 4 speakers into a Sonos zone.

My Questions:
- Will this work the way I'm thinking? Will I be able to listen to TV via the rear two speakers as well as send the audio to another Play 1? Will I be able to chose to turn the patio speakers on or off either via the stereos A/B selector or on-wall volume control? Will I be able to play music on all my sonos devices including the 2 rear speakers and 2 patio speakers? I am OK not having the ability to play separate music on patio speakers vs rear family speakers. I realize with this setup there is no "center" channel for my TV. Can I integrate a Playbar with this setup? Or should I just get a center channel speaker for my stereo receiver?

Thank you for your help!

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2 replies

Thanks for the great reply @melvimbe!

My receiver is older (Onkyo TX-SR304) and rear image is attached.

Yes, my receiver can handle front speakers but the house for some reason wasn't pre-wired for this so I didn't include this in my setup.

I was trying to utilize my receiver to save $ on extra Sonos gear but it sounds like I would be able to achieve everything I want aside from having front speakers for my TV audio.

If I did go the Sonos route as you suggested, with the Playbar to be used for my TV front speakers, wouldn't I just need the Sonos Amp for the rear and patio speakers since that new unit now handles 4 speakers?
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My Questions:
- Will this work the way I'm thinking?


It really depends on what your receiver can do. There should be no problem linking the line out from a Connect to the line in of your receiver. So you would be able to play sonos music services through your receiver and the speakers it powers. The trickier question is whether your receiver has a line out it can send to the Connect, so that your Play:1s can play TV audio (or whatever you have setup with your receiver). I have seen some that does this as their 'zone 2', which would also mean that you can't also power your outdoor speakers perhaps. Me, or someone here, might be able to tell you if you provide the model number of the receiver.


Will I be able to listen to TV via the rear two speakers as well as send the audio to another Play 1?


That depends on what your receiver can do.


Will I be able to chose to turn the patio speakers on or off either via the stereos A/B selector or on-wall volume control?


Most receivers can absolutely do this. With the volume control, you can mute them, so effectively turn them off.

[quote=Enyko]
Will I be able to play music on all my sonos devices including the 2 rear speakers and 2 patio speakers? I am OK not having the ability to play separate music on patio speakers vs rear family speakers. I realize with this setup there is no "center" channel for my TV.[quote=Enyko]

You didn't mention anything about front left and right channel speakers either. Your receiver can probably handle these 3 channels along with the rears and patio speakers.


[quote=Enyko]
Can I integrate a Playbar with this setup?
[quote=Enyko]

No, not really. You can replace everything with Sonos equipment, if you want, but a playbar would essentially replace what your receiver is doing. If you used a playbar up front, you would want a Connnect:amp or Sonos Amp for the speakers in the rear. The patio speakers could be done with either another Connect:amp or Sonos Amp, or your receiver +Connect.


Or should I just get a center channel speaker for my stereo receiver?


A center channel alone won't sound right. You want to left and right front speakers as well, or drop the receiver and go with a soundbar as I suggested above.