Add a third outdoor speaker on a Sonos Connect:Amp


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Hello,

I have two “Polk Audio Patio 200” outdoors hooked on a Sonos Connect. It covers one area of the yard really well. I have another area of the yard that I would like to cover, only a few feet away from the left Polk speaker. We can hear the music but I'd have to crank it up high, which is not cool for the neighboors.

The simpest idea would be to extend the speaker wires out to a third speaker, but part of me tells me it's a stupid idea:

  • I'd only get the left side of the stereo (which might be acceptable- I don't expect high audio quality there, I already have indoors for that).
  • The sonos amp would have to power two left speakers with the same output vs one right speaker. I could also get 2 new speakers so at least it's even on each side.

 

I am pretty much posting here for someone to confirm it is stupid…

If so, then what are my options? I could get a standalone Sonos, but Sonos don't do outdoor speakers (It's out of the rain but don't know how long a Play One would survive outside) and I expect a small delay compared to the other two Polk which might get annoying.

Is there a better alternative?

 

Thanks!
Alex


9 replies

Userlevel 5
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Hi @radyohead 

Thanks for your post!

You’ve already outlined the downsides to doing this, so I won’t bother repeating them. My advice would be to give it a go and see how it sounds. If you experience the volume ramping down by itself after a few minutes, desist. The ramping will protect the amplifier circuit, so there won’t be any damage, but if this happens you shouldn’t continue. If the ramping doesn’t happen, then the only reason not to continue would be for a reason you outlined.

We do do outdoor speakers - in addition to the Sonance Outdoor speakers for Connect:AMPs/Amps, there is the Move, which can use it’s own battery as well as receive Bluetooth and is weather resistant. By the end of this month, the first customers will be getting hold of the brand new Roam, which is more portable than the Move and is water submersible. The Roam is able to share it’s Bluetooth received stream with the rest of your Sonos system.

It should be noted, however, that the Roam is S2 compatible only, so if your Connect:AMP is S1 only, they won’t work in tandem (though you can certainly use both individually).

 

Userlevel 2
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Thank you for the reply, Corry!

 

Definitely worth a shot then. I'll make sure I can return the speakers in case of ramp down so I can re-evaluate the plan.

Do you recommend trying with the same Polk speakers rather than a different brand/model?
Best to plan for 2x Polk (for a total of 4 speakers on the Amp) or no difference on the Amp circuit protection if I end up with 2 lefts + 1 right?


I'll try and share my experience here.

Thank you!

Userlevel 5
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@radyohead

You are very welcome.

For more than 2 speakers, all of them should have an impedance of 8 Ohms - the brand shouldn’t matter. But don’t expect 2 speakers of different models or manufacturers to sound exactly the same. If your existing Polk speakers are 4 Ohms, I wouldn’t try adding more.

I was playing it safe with the ramping - a just-in-case (due to the unknown impedance of the Polks). In all likelihood (again, if 8 Ohm speakers are used), it will be fine, though you may notice the doubled channel being quieter than the channel that only has one speaker (which will probably be hard to notice, as there’s two speakers being quieter so you’ll probably perceive it to be louder). If you can get 2 more speakers instead of 1, that’s always going to sound better.

 

It looks like those speakers are sold as a pair, so I would look to rearrange them with 4 covering the space rather than 2.  That will also help get stereo audio everywhere.  Those speakers are 8 ohms, so they should work with wiring 2 pair to each connection.  Also, it sounds like you’re thinking to just connect the speakers in series (new speakers off of existing speakers) rather than parallel (each speaker directly connected to the amp.  Sonos recommends making the connection in parallel. 

 

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Yes, I'll have to go in series. Not really an option to hook them on the amp, I'd have to pull new wires through walls all over the house. If series doesn't work, it would probably be easier to get a new amp just for those two speakers than re-wiring all the way.

Is there a connector for the speaker cables or should I just tape them with electrician tape? Or prob better to plug the extension wires into the 2 speakers that are already in place actually.

Userlevel 5
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@radyohead 

We don’t just recommend wiring in parallel - we insist. Please see our connect 4 speakers to an Amp or Connect:AMP page.

If you can’t do that easily enough, I think a Sonos Move might be a better option for you - at least you’ll get both stereo channels in your new location, and voice control and Bluetooth to boot.

Yes, I'll have to go in series. Not really an option to hook them on the amp, I'd have to pull new wires through walls all over the house. If series doesn't work, it would probably be easier to get a new amp just for those two speakers than re-wiring all the way.

Is there a connector for the speaker cables or should I just tape them with electrician tape? Or prob better to plug the extension wires into the 2 speakers that are already in place actually.

 

Actually, I may be off and you still can wire the speakers in parallel.  Lots of articles on the internet about this.  Here’s one.

https://hometoys.com/series-parallel-speaker-wiring-2/

And here’s Sonos support article.

https://support.sonos.com/s/article/4730?language=en_US

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Ok, thank you both. Looks like the Move might indeed be easier in the end, although the speaker would never actually Move 😉. Any concern if the Move is plugged into power at all times?

Alternatively, I could carry it out as needed. Not really my initial plan but it fulfills the requirement to have a speaker in that area, plus I'm sure it would get used elsewhere at times as well.

Ok, thank you both. Looks like the Move might indeed be easier in the end, although the speaker would never actually Move 😉. Any concern if the Move is plugged into power at all times?

Alternatively, I could carry it out as needed. Not really my initial plan but it fulfills the requirement to have a speaker in that area, plus I'm sure it would get used elsewhere at times as well.

 

No problem leaving the Move plugged in, but it’s not rated to stay outside permanently. You can leave it outside for the day, maybe forget and leave it in the rain a day or two, but wouldn’t leave it out all the time.  Also, you’re going to want to have it be in WiFi range outside, if you want it to play along with your other speakers.

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