Question

Bluetooth adapter for Play 5

  • 3 January 2017
  • 18 replies
  • 19027 views

Hi Sonos Community!

The short question: Which Bluetooth adapter do you recommend to use with Sonos Play 5 (via line-in)?

I've just bought Sonos Play 5 and I am greatly disappointed. Sound quality is truly amazing. The lack of Bluetooth is really annoying. I knew it before buying but in practice you need Bluetooth some times!
The Bluetooth would make this speaker perfect. For this reason I am considering return and going with Bose SoundTouch 30.

However I decided to give it a shot with Bluetooth adapter. Can you please recommend one which would not lower the quality of the sound?

Thx!
Greg

18 replies

Lowering the quality of the sound is what Bluetooth does as a matter of course (never mind Bose...), unless the Bluetooth supports the aptX codec. Note that both ends of the connection would need to be aptX capable, so any recommendation would need to take account of the intended source devices.
Userlevel 5
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Yes Bluetooth results in some loss of fidelity in many cases as ratty has pointed out. However I do maintain that Sonos should have included both Bluetooth and line in in their 2nd gen Play products. These are ubiquitous connectivity options that many consumers are well accustomed to. It should not start a debate about the relative strengths of wifi vs Bluetooth. We all know the former is superior. It's about presenting a good set of options to users.
I have a Logitech 980-000910 adapter attached to my Play 5 and it works well for those few times I've want/needed it.
Other manufacturers decided to include Bluetooth and deal with its limitations and the hit on reliability and/or sound quality. Sonos decided to forgo Bluetooth in favor of more reliability and better sound. All of this is quite plain to the consumer, so buying one while simultaneously wishing for the other(s) seems to be a strange purchasing decision.
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Jgatie I remain totally confused about this hit on quality. Including Bluetooth does not impact the main wifi service you are offering. What it does is add another connectivity option that would cover other content sources not covered in Sonos portfolio of services.

I hear that some people may not do the best research into what they buy. But I say let's not over exaggerate this talk about reliability and quality hit. Wifi connectivity IS MAINTAINED. There are a million Bluetooth companies out there - it is not the most complicated technology requiring a ton of support.

Sonos has made their choice it is not one I agree with and the fact is many reputable tech review sites list this omission as a con.
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Btw I too have a Logitech adaptor to stem the gap.
Bluetooth has limited bandwidth, so it decreases sound quality by using lossy compression, unless you are using apt-x capable devices.

Yes, it is a con for some who want Bluetooth natively. It's also a pro for those of us who don't need it, and would rather the savings in manufacturing costs, not to mention the support costs for an inferior technology, get spent elsewhere. Luckily, we have purchasing choices.
Userlevel 5
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Again I am confused. Does the existence of Bluetooth prevent you from accessing the high quality of wifi? It is well known the limitations of Bluetooth. I am saying that not having it in the Play product is a bigger limitation. People will happily use Bluetooth to listen where it is their best option and wifi when that's the best option. For example my default listening mode on my Play 5 with Bluetooth adaptor attached is wifi. I revert to Bluetooth only when the audio I want is not available through available services. It is very handy.

The savings in manufacturing cost is not a benefit to you but to Sonos. And yes businesses exist to make money but if they are not careful in monitoring what are now base feature offerings from their competitors they may run into problems. Apple eventually had a lot of their meals eaten by Samsung for a period due to being stubborn in adding some features.

In this day and age you selling a pricy speaker with only wifi??? Who does that anymore??? Someone who is very confident or taking certain things for granted.
@jgatie I've made decision based on sound quality. Sonos is simply better sounding speaker then Bose. I thought WiFi only is fine until I started to use it. I will buy a Bluetooth adapter and see how it works with that.
However I think that including Bluetooth would simply make usability much better and looking though the forums I am not the only one who thinks like that.

@ratty Thanks for the tip with the aptX codec devices. I will buy one of those.
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I use this for multiple applications - Tv to Headphones, old record/cd player combo to bluetooth speaker. It's great! http://amzn.to/2hPkNIg
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To the OP's question, I've been happy with the "Mpow
Bluetooth 4.0 HD Music Audio Receiver Adapter with Built in Apt-X Technology for Home Stereo System, Smartphones and Tablets" that I picked up on amazon for $25 a while ago. However, I use this to play from phone to a bookshelf stereo, rather than my Sonos.
If I want to play something to Sonos from my phone, BT is not required as you can connect via wifi directly to a Sonos as a Media renderer (I'm assuming it's a DLNA device.) Have you tried that?
There are many factors that one should keep into consideration like the ease of using the transmitter, its range, how compatible is the Bluetooth transmitter with other devices and the price. All these criteria for selection of a device make it easier for you to only pick the best Bluetooth transmitter.
https://itday.com/audio-video/best-bluetooth-transmitters-market/
To the OP's question, I've been happy with the "Mpow
Bluetooth 4.0 HD Music Audio Receiver Adapter with Built in Apt-X Technology for Home Stereo System, Smartphones and Tablets" that I picked up on amazon for $25 a while ago. However, I use this to play from phone to a bookshelf stereo, rather than my Sonos.
If I want to play something to Sonos from my phone, BT is not required as you can connect via wifi directly to a Sonos as a Media renderer (I'm assuming it's a DLNA device.) Have you tried that?


Hey jomcwil
Can you explain how you would do this ie if i want to stream the music from my android device (using a source that is not available in the sonos app) how do i choose my speaker source to be the sonos. In other words how do i get to the nearby device option?

Thank you for the help in advance
Userlevel 5
Badge +13
I just tried this one on my Play:5 Gen2 last week - worked like a charm, but range not awesome, walked from garage into house and lost it at about 20 feet, through one wall.

https://www.amazon.com/Brookstone-Big-Blue-Bluetooth-Amplifier/dp/B01N9F3FYQ

Its not made by Brookstone anymore, but if you can find it in one of their stores, they were clearing them out at $19.95
How about the latest model Dot? With voice control as a bonus. I can't speak to the range, but mine works very well in adding BT capability to a Connect Amp.
I would love to have Bluetooth in order to listen to the NPR app from my phone. A better solution would be if Sonos finally included NPR as a streaming service, but customer have been requesting that for years to no avail.
Userlevel 7
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This one looks really good
https://www.amazon.com/TP-Link-NFC-Enabled-Bluetooth-Streaming-HA100/dp/B00YPATOEE/ref=sr_1_10?ie=UTF8&qid=1518388186&sr=8-10&keywords=bluetooth+receiver
Userlevel 7
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You could instead go with chromecast - https://www.bestbuy.com/site/google-chromecast-audio-black/4532100.p?skuId=4532100&ref=06&loc=01&ksid=e6ca5312-3bd8-438a-b536-2a056033aba8&ksprof_id=16&ksaffcode=pg72905&ksdevice=c&msclkid=631ecb7589e11070e85f91f54dddb384

I believe the NPR one app supports chromecast

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