Answered

My speakers don't go into "idle" state. Why?

  • 14 September 2022
  • 8 replies
  • 170 views

Hi Sonos community
I have a bunch of Sonos products and like most responsible home owners I suddenly got an interest to get my energy consumption under control.
Using a electricity meter (a dedicated power meter, not a smart plug) I find that my Sonos speakers consume roughly 15W (S1), 18W (S3) and 20W (S5). It is a lot higher than mentioned on https://support.sonos.com/s/article/256 but when I look more careful (in Home Assistant) the devices are in "paused" state, not "idle"... Hm, perhaps that is my problem.

The same article as above explains how/when the devices turn into "idle" (and reach the advertised low energy consumption state) but regardless of what I do I can't observe that ever happening. None of the devices are playing anything, I wait for 3 minutes but nothing happens... I wait for 30 minutes, still nothing. I don't have any surround system which can cause a longer delay accordig to the article. When I look at the state history (in Home Assistant again) I can't see any device ever going idle - not even when we leave the house for vacation.


It does not seem to change anything if I close all clients/apps that control the system. 

The only thing I can think of is the Home Assistant integration, could that possibly keep the system from going idle??

Any ideas?

 

---------------------------------
Play:3: SonosA
Sonos OS: S1
Version: 11.5 (build 571231030)
Maskinvaruversion: 1.8.1.3-2.0
Serie-ID: A100

Play:1: SonosB
Sonos OS: S1
Version: 11.5 (build 571231030)
Maskinvaruversion: 1.8.3.7-2.0
Serie-ID: A101

Play:1: SonosC
Sonos OS: S1
Version: 11.5 (build 571231030)
Maskinvaruversion: 1.8.3.7-2.0
Serie-ID: A101

Play:1: SonosD
Sonos OS: S1
Version: 11.5 (build 571231030)
Maskinvaruversion: 1.8.3.7-2.0
Serie-ID: A101

Play:5: SonosE
Sonos OS: S1
Version: 11.5 (build 571231030)
Maskinvaruversion: 1.17.4.1-2.0
Serie-ID: B100

Play:1: SonosF
Sonos OS: S1
Version: 11.5 (build 571231030)
Maskinvaruversion: 1.8.3.7-2.0
Serie-ID: A101

Play:3: SonosG
Sonos OS: S1
Version: 11.5 (build 571231030)
Maskinvaruversion: 1.8.1.3-2.0
Serie-ID: A100

Play:1: SonosH
Sonos OS: S1
Version: 11.5 (build 571231030)
Maskinvaruversion: 1.20.1.6-2.1
Serie-ID: A200

Play:1: SonosI
Sonos OS: S1
Version: 11.5 (build 571231030)
Maskinvaruversion: 1.20.1.6-2.1
Serie-ID: A200

Play:1: SonosJ
Sonos OS: S1
Version: 11.5 (build 571231030)
Maskinvaruversion: 1.20.1.6-2.2
Serie-ID: A200

Play:5: SonosK
Sonos OS: S1
Version: 11.5 (build 571231030)
Maskinvaruversion: 1.17.4.1-2.0
Serie-ID: B100
 

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Best answer by John B 20 September 2022, 09:47

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8 replies

Userlevel 7
Badge +18

Hi @clabos 

Welcome to the Sonos Community!

Firstly, I wouldn’t pay too much attention to what Home Assistant tells you - the “idle” that we refer to is the fact that the digital amplifier inside the device has powered down after 3 minutes of silence. As far as I know, this information is not shared to any other devices, though it is recorded in the diagnostics.  All Home Assistant is telling you is that the device is online and not currently playing.

As for the recorded consumption rates that you’ve seen, and considering you’re recording higher values than expected on all your devices, I would test another, third-party product like a low-energy light bulb to verify the meter has been properly calibrated. If it does indeed still seem that the Sonos devices are consuming more than they should, I can only recommend you get in touch with our technical support team directly. You will probably need to supply some pictures of the meter readings, and some diagnostics submitted at the same time - you may want to prepare these beforehand to shorten the call.

I hope this helps.

 

Thank you Corry for your reply.

I did have a call with the Swedish Sonos support earlier last week but got dismissed by a seemingly junior support person who just repeated what is supposed to happen instead of listening to my observations to understand the issue.

I have now recorded two timelapse clips that show a 9-10W reading of a control lightbulb and 11-13W readings for both a Play1 and Play3 that are constant for 5 min (didn’t think it would make sense to record more because it won’t ever change).

Is there anyone in the central support team that can help me and look at this? If not, do you have any tips for how to get the attention of the local support team?

Thanks again.

/Claes

Edit: Submitted diagnostics too, ref 759498494.

I’m curious: Are any players Grouped? Are you using Line-In on the PLAY:5’s?

Hi @buzz 

Two of my 1:s are grouped into a stereo pair. One of my 5:s use line-in (TV audio). The rest of the players are stand-alone.

8 devices connect via wifi, 3 via ethernet cable.

Hi. This is interesting.  I think you should repeat the experiment with the line in removed from the Play:5.  All Sonos devices should have not been playing audio for 10 minutes (say)..

Incidentally, if three of your devices are wired the other devices will not connect over WiFi but over SonosNet (unless you have "disabled WiFi" on the wired devices).

I should have expressed this slightly differently. In SONOS speak “Rooms” can be Grouped, players can be “Bonded” into pairs or surround systems. The Bonded players then become a Room.

Thanks for feedback and ideas.

Regarding grouping (sorry, misunderstood) - yes, some players were grouped during my experiment. I sometimes group the dining areas and I noticed that the Play:3 was grouped with the kitchen Play:5 during my experiment. The Play:1 in my experiment was not grouped though.

I have now done additional testing (see below) and recorded videos but the conclusion is that regardless of what I do the Play:1 and Play:3 draws 13W constantly and the Play:5 18W. According to https://support.sonos.com/s/article/256?language=sv the Play:1=3.8W, Play:3=4.4W and Play:5=8W.

I am the only one observing this behaviour? 

Anyway, this is what I did:

Six Sonos speakers were connected (five unplugged) when I started the testing
a) Play:3, wifi
b) Play:1 (master), cable
c) Play:1, cable
d) Play:5, wifi (USED IN TEST 7)
e) Play:5, wifi, line-in
f) Play:1, wifi (USED FOR TESTS 1-5)

My test scenarios:
1) No grouped devices. No audio has played last 10 minutes. (21:10)
Result: Play:1 shows constant consumption of 13W for the duration of the recording (5 min)

2) Device (c) is using cable, now disabling wifi in the device settings. The iOS app crashed at the first attempt to disable wifi, but succeeded at next attempt. (21:23)
Result: Still 13W 

[While waiting for the next test I checked the meter itself by measuring an 11W light bulb, got 9-11W readings, so the meter in itself seems ok]

3) Removing the line-in cable for device (e) (21:38)
Result: Still 13W

4) The master (b) is connected by ethernet cable, now disabling wifi in the device settings. (21:50)
Result: Still 13W

5) Unplugging ALL devices except the test device and the master. (22:00)
Result: Still 13W, some flickering between 11-13W

6) With all devices except master still unplugged, a previously unplugged Play:3 device is measured. (22:07)
Result: 13W

7) With all devices except master still unplugged, a Play:5 device is measured. (22:14)
Result: 18W

I submitted diagnostics at 22:25, ref 499480291

 

Once all testing was done I had to restore the wifi-setting in the master, otherwise the other devices weren’t discovered when I plugged them back in. I don’t think I understand how the mesh Sonos wifi vs house wifi works…

All feedback and ideas are welcome. By the way, I haven’t heard back from the local support team, they said “we will contact you in case we get any new information” :/

Will try to contact them tomorrow.

Userlevel 7
Badge +18

Hi @clabos 

In the diagnostics, I can see your devices powering-down their amplifiers, so they are going into “idle” state as they should.

Your ethernet-wired devices will naturally use more power than the minimum possible as they are providing WiFi for the other devices and must respond to their communications, even when nothing happens - in essence, replying to “are you still there?” They are also receiving multicast packets intended for other devices on your network that they need to process to know to ignore - any activity on their incoming ports will increase CPU usage and thus the power drain.

There are also times when your wired Hall speaker is having to re-transmit packets due to transmission failures. Reducing wireless interference will likely be the answer to reducing this, and thus power consumption.

Grouping, as suggested above, may increase power drain due to the increase of traffic between devices, though I assume this would be marginal.

I think the main issue might be the meter you are using, however - I’m sure that the caveat on https://support.sonos.com/s/article/256 is there for a reason. The meter will not be reporting every measurement it makes, so is it reporting the average, the median, or the peak? The units might be peaking at higher power levels for very short intervals, and it could be the peak measurement that the meter reports. I recently watched a Linus Tech Tips video on YouTube where he’d spent a lot of money on a professional PC PSU tester - more than he spent on 2 cars - and, while I’m not saying that you’d need to do that to get an accurate reading, I’m sure professional-level devices cost more for a reason and while I have no idea what we use to validate our reported ratings, I’m reasonably sure it wouldn’t be available in consumer outlets (shopping outlets, not power outlets).

I hope this helps.

 

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