Question

Outdoor Weatherproof Speakers


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I want to make two irrefutable statements of fact:

1) Sonos is the best wireless speaker system in the world with a very intuitive app that makes wireless audio amazingly simple.
2) Sonos management cares little about customer feedback and is leaving millions on the table.

While that might sound kind of harsh, consider that the Sonos Community has viewed a thread over 46,000 times and I've seen online blogs begging for an outdoor speaker FOR YEARS! How many millions of dollars could Sonos have made by simply delivering on this request? I've personally looked for weatherproof enclosures for both the Connect Amp and Play speakers and nobody has an elegant solution.

It's completely aggravating when I come to the Sonos website after over a year of owning my system and still there is no answer to the community by management letting us know: A) when a weatherproof speaker is coming, or 😎 why it will never come. And I'm late to the party, which means others were ignored for over five years before me!

Should Sonos offer a weatherproof speaker?


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56 replies

The elements are brutal. Weatherproof speakers is one thing, weatherproof powered electronics, whole other. Also, agree with other perspectives... an outdoor speaker is a funny thing. There's many different preferences there. Lately it seems people want hidden/camouflaged speakers outside. Additionally, you have to consider a vast array of conditions that could hinder the Sonos practicality. Having access to electrical outside isn't a assumed thing.
All good points; particularly since after the one time effort of running speaker wires to passive external speakers of choice, there IS a Sonos solution anchored via either a Connect Amp or Connect placed safely indoors.

On the other hand, in an era of music access via streaming services no longer needing access to a local NAS, there also now are true/fully wireless solutions provided by the many excellent portable and weatherproof bluetooth speakers now out there.

Between the two, the market for a wireless Sonos external speaker would seem to be very niche for the development resource diversion to the effort; that boat has sailed some years ago.
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Think it's a bit harsh to claim Sonos "Management" is ignoring this request. I'm sure it's a collective decision by their product development and engineering team that this is not a priority. Frankly I can agree. I would rather they focus their efforts on next gen Sonos speakers integration with voice assistants and being in the mix with smart homes than divert resources to solves the issue of certifiably weatherproofing a self powered sonos speaker from rain, sun, heat, ice, etc. The elements are brutal. Weatherproof speakers is one thing, weatherproof powered electronics, whole other. Also, agree with other perspectives... an outdoor speaker is a funny thing. There's many different preferences there. Lately it seems people want hidden/camouflaged speakers outside. Additionally, you have to consider a vast array of conditions that could hinder the Sonos practicality. Having access to electrical outside isn't a assumed thing. Many people would have to install new outlets to locate speakers where they want them. There's a reason the outdoor nest cam has a 25ft power cable for instance. Finally, WiFi coverage, while getting easier to solve with mesh networking etc, is also potentially problematic outside for average homeowners. All that said, perhaps you and others are prescient and we'll see Google or Amazon beat them to market with a smart outdoor speaker.
I've had a pair of 3's on my patio for 5 years now, they are mounted just under the rain gutter, if the weather is very heavy, they get wet and snow... but they just keep on going, I have had zero problems with them what so ever.

The last couple of years I've had them wrapped in plastic artificial ivy vines, so that they are practically invisible and I tell myself that it must keep some of the worst rain away.

It should be noted that I live in Denmark, the weather here is shit 80% of the time.
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I just ordered a cover from https://www.beyondthewake.com/outdoor-speaker-covers.php Will see if good, but figure if it can protect in a marine environment, under my porch should also be good 🙂.:?

How did you make out with Beyond the Wake as a company and how are the speaker covers working out?

I ordered a pair of covers for my Play1's and after waiting a week and a half I emailed to get an ETA and did not get a response for 2 days so I emailed again saying "Please, could you let me know you got my email and look into my order".

His response was "I have no time for pushy, rude people, this is our busy season and you will get them when you get them. I will cancel your order if you don't want to wait".

I asked to have my order canceled, not because I didn't want the covers, but because the guy seemed like a total tool who did not know what customer service is. I simply asked that he acknowledge my email (since he didn't for over 2 work days) and let me know an ETA, which he did not just said I was pushy & rude.

Anyway- Looking for feedback on those covers if you can. Are they really waterproof? When I asked the company if they were waterproof they just quoted what was on the website, something like "Water beads up and rolls off" I asked if he could verify that they would be safe outdoors in raid. He just quoted the same thing. idk.

I'm actually working on a cover for my Play1 speakers. If I'm successful maybe you will see it on the market.
Ah, the old "I just washed my car so it will rain" argument. Pretty solid evidence 🙂
Pretty sure that Sonos outdoor weatherproof speakers are imminent. How do i know this? I dropped a $1000 on 2 connect amps to hook up 4 Polk weatherproof speakers in my yard arpund my pool. A royal pain in the you know where to run a few hundread feet of 12 gauge wire but its done and i do love it. :D:P;)
There is no lag with a Connect:Amp in regards to other Sonos speakers. The lag only applies to the line-in source, and it is only in regards to the original source of the line-in. Also, you can experience lag due to a receiver putting DSP effects on the output of a Connect. Neither of these apply to powering a pair of outdoor speakers.
Thanks, agree with your observations. I have considered the option of using Sonos as the source under the passive option, but had read somewhere that there was a lag in the transmission, thereby causing an annoying echo. Anyone been able to do that successfully? Again, still not sure why Sonos just can't offer a weather resistant speaker. I'm not going to leave it outside in the weather year-round.
At some point I'll be interested in expanding or upgrading my system other than buying additional Play 1s, 3s, 5s. At that point, I'll probably go with Bose.

Well, If you switch to Bose, you wouldn't be expanding your system, you be purchasing a second system.


I don't want to, but they offer more comprehensive solutions now that weren't available when I originally bought Sonos. It's not a threat, it's just an observation that I will eventually cease to buy Sonos if they don't keep up with my / our needs. And there's less of a clear advantage of Sonos over Bose these days. And clearly some disadvantages.


Although Bose does offer outdoor speakers, they don't offer outdoor multiroom speakers (as far as I know). They aren't going to sync up with other Bose in your house. You're options are either a Bluetooth speaker that you're going to have to recharge and take in and out, or you have passive speakers. If passive, you can use Sonos as your source, and power if you want, just as easily as anything else.
I, too, want an outdoor speaker option from Sonos without a great deal of creative engineering to get there. I've owned a Sonos system for 5+ years and must say I'm getting impatient with the lack of a solution offered by Sonos. At some point I'll be interested in expanding or upgrading my system other than buying additional Play 1s, 3s, 5s. At that point, I'll probably go with Bose. I don't want to, but they offer more comprehensive solutions now that weren't available when I originally bought Sonos. It's not a threat, it's just an observation that I will eventually cease to buy Sonos if they don't keep up with my / our needs. And there's less of a clear advantage of Sonos over Bose these days. And clearly some disadvantages.
Surely there can be a simple way to make a weatherproof Sonos power box that plugs into an exterior GCFI receipt much like a low voltage lighting transformer. This ain't "rocket surgery":D

You know that the transformer is the easy part, right? The speaker probably isn't that hard either, since it's been done a lot already. The hard part is essentially the on board computer. It's a bit more complicated that your landscape lights. Probably a bit more than a Bluetooth speaker has as well.

I think it's actually more comparable to a ruggedized laptop.
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I am sitting on my patio listening to Sonos at this very moment. YES...I realize that this won't work for everyone. BUT...if you can spend an hour running speaker wire from inside your house to your yard, there is a spectacular solution already. And you may already have the hole in your wall (just check where your TV cables come in).

Anyhow, if you can run wires:

1) Connect Amp safe and sound in your home. No electrical/water worries, and as a bonus close to your wifi source.
2) Speaker wire...I used low-voltage wire that is made for outdoor use (you can get at a home store in the outdoor lighting area.
3) A pair of TRUE REAL OUTDOOR DESIGNED speakers. Mine have been outdoors in upstate New York winters for 3-4 years now and work 100% perfectly.

Again, I know that running wire is not going to be possible for some people. But if it is in your case, this is a perfect solution to keep electrical equipment where it belongs...INDOORS.
Surely there can be a simple way to make a weatherproof Sonos power box that plugs into an exterior GCFI receipt much like a low voltage lighting transformer. This ain't "rocket surgery":D
A cover won't work because getting it to be weather proof AND acoustically transparent is close to impossible. And then there is still the unsolved problem of getting mains power in a way that is safe.
another option is for Sonos to partner with or create independently a water "resistant" cover or case that can be played through (not have to be removed to play them). Doesn't even have to be water proof, just mostly resistant. If Sonos is not interested you would think a company like Sanus may be.. Maybe the market is just not there yet.
What's your estimation on how many of these speakers could be sold in year 1, year 2, year 3, and year 5? And the estimated cost of spinning up a new manufacturing line? And the additional support needed? And liability insurance on manufacture of an electrical device designed to be used in a wet environment? And add another 20% for other costs I've not thought of...marketing, etc

I'm not slamming you, I'm truly interested. The best way to make your case for such a speaker is to run these numbers, and show if there's a financial interest for the company to do this. I don't know what the numbers are, but am assuming that Sonos does, and it's why they haven't done it (yet...who knows what they're planning, they certainly don't tell us). I hope I'm wrong, and that they are working on it. Or even if they'd just announce it.
Complacency at it's finest!!
I agree completely that these guys are missing a "EPIC" opportunity as many satisfied Sonos owners crave an outdoor weatherproof connection! Someone is asleep at the switch!!!!!!
I was hoping to keep the covers on the PLAY5's even while playing them, maybe I mis-judged them and will need to take them off. Either way they will be mostly under a patio and will have to just protect from fog and humidity and dust. Moving the speakers is something I'm hoping to avoid, maybe for the San Diego rainy season of 2 months.
I wouldn't trust those speaker covers, at least not to the point where I'd leave my PLAYs outside. The speakers they cover in a marine environment are surely waterproof. The cover is just added security. And their warranty clearly states that if their product fails, then they cover the cost of the cover, not the speaker.

Besides that, I'd think the effort it takes to take the speakers in and out every time you want to use them isn't much more than having to cover and uncover these speakers.

All that said, I do have some outdoor speakers that are exposed to the elements where this might be useful. However, I can't justify a $45 cover for a $100 speaker. I'd rather just replace if it fails. And a cheap drawstring backpack covers them and keeps some of the water out for cheap.
I just ordered a cover from https://www.beyondthewake.com/outdoor-speaker-covers.php Will see if good, but figure if it can protect in a marine environment, under my porch should also be good 🙂.:?
ugh! Just left my play 3 outside after party and it got caught in rain... Good news. It still works. Bad news would love some outdoor sonos!!!
You have not had music outdoors while waiting the decade?!
something new is in the pipeline from sonos but no idea what - could be outdoor or something completely different...
https://en.community.sonos.com/wireless-speakers-228992/new-product-showing-on-fcc-s15-6773941

we'll know more by 27 August when the restricted documents become available or more likely the product is launched !


I don't think that's related to an outdoor speaker at all. More likely voice command control. BUT, I would LOVE outdoor speakers. I'd immediately purchase 2 or 3 if they released them. I've been waiting almost a decade for them.
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Anyone figure out a way to put a Play 1, 3 or 5 in some sort of water proof enclosure?? I am not buying a Connect Amp and speakers because I'm not a millionaire.