Question

playbar and comittment for DTS playback firmware upgrade


I have just added the Sonos Playbar to my samsung smart TV and have discovered the lack of DTS functionality through reading this forum. I find it disappointing that the best we can get is a stereo effect through the playbar?  My originial search was based on identifying a way of using my existing Onkyo nr509 AV Amp with the playbar however that appears to be a no go option as well. The concept of buying and adding the playbar as a step change to the surround sound system I had has left me feeling I have done the wrong thing?  Slightly cheated in a sense too, I hear what Sonos are saying that the majority of content is streamed and agree we use netflix however I also enjoy having a collection of Bluray discs and feel Sonos should fulfil both requirements.  If anyone can give us an  idea as to when this may be re-considered as it looks like Sonos have closed the subject down from reading through the forums.  Do I revert to my old system and return the Playbar to John Lewis could buy a couple Play3's instead?  

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214 replies

While a lot of tv's don't support or output dts, but they WILL pass-through dts. In my case, I have an extensive library of blu-rays on my home server, and they all play in their native formats. So when I get a file that has dts, I need to manually re-encode the file to remove the dts, often at the expense of multi channel audio.

I love my sonos products, but the lack of dts support just negates any and all 'ease of use' gained from having sonos. There are so many hoops to jump through to properly play my media through the playbar.

I, like many others, feel cheated.
Userlevel 1
Just want to record my vote for getting DTS support in Sonos!
Please, Sonos, listen to your customers!
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Not supporting DTS is a SIGNIFICANT disservice to Sonos' loyal customer base. Please provide a workaround (i.e. some sort of decoding/re-coding software to convert the signat to something that the surrounds can use!). I've spend several thousand dollars on Sonos gear and while the system is great for music, it's highly mediocre and overpriced for home theater.
Userlevel 2
Badge +4
I just got some sonos 2x play:1 kit speakers and want to get wireless surround but this playbar lack of input and format support surprise me
for a company like sonos. I will wait and see what second generation brings for soundbar.

I think Sonos is a decent wifi system and I probably use for music but please dont be hubris and listen to your customers need
I like Sonos to stick around and not fall into Jim Collins how the mighty fall
STAGE 1: HUBRIS BORN OF SUCCESS

I still remember Sony refuse to support MP3 and their walkman and music player was top notch at the time
then Apple came out with iPod and MP3 because that what the majority of user use for digital music
and the rest is history.

There are lessons to be learned for business not listening to their customers need
Userlevel 1
I too think this is a massive issue and have a HDMI switch box with a built in DTS HD and DD True HD converter, with optical output. Problem I have is I have to switch optical lines from TV to switch box when I want to watch a Bluray through my XB1. The decoder box is only $99, which I'm honestly surprised they don't add it to the Playbar, with dual optical inputs. I would really like grouping too of Play 1/3s in surround sound.
Dear All, Dear SONOS,

I see that this post was written like 5-7 months ago. I bought my SONOS plabar just 1 month ago and since this industry is moving fast, I feel confortable to come back on that DTS topic one more time to have a timing and / or a faire and honest explanation.

Since SONOS mentioned they are 'always evaluating industry trends for future develpoments, I would like to know what are their views now end of 2014.

Looking for a new TV I noted that the trend is moving clearly toward DTS more and more (2014 model mid range TV Sony Optical out is only Dolby Digital // Samsung Opitcal Out is only DTS // Panasonic mid range : Optical out is both DD and DTS). This make clear that the trend is moving towars DTS from TV perspectives and this is happening like NOW.

Although I agree that sources like Netflix, Tuner and Apps are not DTS yet but it will come for sure. And anyway since at that point and still for some time the content is quite limited and I am sure SONOS does not want to be a brand seen just as a follower that provide only the minimum format required for mass people, we have to agree that external sources such as Blurays and USB remain key ; as an example the TV manufacturer invest a lot in the ability to read all the different audio and video format through external sources.

Then, when looking at those external sources, well the sources are getting more and more DTS oriented once again. 

SONOS, thanks in advance for your prompt answer.
Or should I open anew post on that one?

Is there anywhere we can complains and see how many people are begging for DTS to be set up instead fo going non sense set up ....

Thanks

A honest proud but slightly disapointed customer
One word . . . Decaf.
I believe that the reason for not including DTS is because of most of the TVs lack DTS support. But I hope the reconsider this due to the fact of all future TVs most likely will have this possibility. I have a Samsung and I'm forced to change output every time I turn on a blue ray. I'm even open for paying additionally if it is a cost factor. 
Shane,  

There are options for Blu-rays that encode the audio track in DTS if you're seeking full 5.1 via Dolby Digital.  There are several models of blu-ray player available which are capable of transcoding from DTS to Dolby, and the Xbox One is capable of doing this as well (if you happen to be an Xbox owner).

We're always evaluating industry trends for future developments but at this time the other posters are correct - there are no plans to implement DTS for the PLAYBAR in the future.

The PS3 can decode. 

Why does it matter what you feel the "Future Trends" are, just add what your customers are asking for! PLEASE
Userlevel 3
The more I read the more I am puzzled by the Sonos stance of not supporting DTS. What is the real reason? Can the network not support the bandwidth? If so just be upfront about it. Is it too expensive to licence? I don't think so given the premium price tag. So what's the real reason? Surely not Just Mr 'designer' has his head up his woofer? Really? It's a music system so just support the popular formats or say so in BIG letters on the box.
Userlevel 1
I think he was being sarcastic about the last statement. DTS is going to be a massive issue very soon, as all Bluray movies will be encoded in DTS. As I stated about though the issue isn't the Playbar, it's your TV not supporting Pass-Through. The optical output on most TVs is Dolby 2.0 and the Playbar decodes it from there
Shane,  

There are options for Blu-rays that encode the audio track in DTS if you're seeking full 5.1 via Dolby Digital.  There are several models of blu-ray player available which are capable of transcoding from DTS to Dolby, and the Xbox One is capable of doing this as well (if you happen to be an Xbox owner).

We're always evaluating industry trends for future developments but at this time the other posters are correct - there are no plans to implement DTS for the PLAYBAR in the future.

Your analysis of future trends does not reflect current consumer trends. As evidenced by the hundreds and hundreds of posts on this matter.

The first decent competing product that offers dts and dd+ support, or hdmi connections, will hammer your sales.

You can't rely on brand loyalty, as too many people are already disillusioned with your product(s).

I love technology and this includes many aspects of your product offerings. Overall though, I REGRET my Sonos purchase.

If I had it over again I would avoid your HT system like the plague (whole house music, fine).
Userlevel 1
Badge +1
Please reconsider your decision on DTS, All Samsung TV's from at least 2012 now have a firmware update that now has DTS Neo support via Optical.
Samsung has 30% market share. That's a lot of TV's that now support DTS.

I think most people understand that this is an additional cost, but I get the feeling you have some good margin in the product. This is obviously the biggest issue on the forums so please stop thinking technically and think about how this is affecting your brand and eventually your future growth and market share with so many other vendors’ eagerly developing similar, but currently inferior technology.

Please reconsider... and oh by the way, please support Spotify connect - It’s really cool.
Another potential Sonos Soundbar and Sub sale LOST...

I've been happily using my Sonos system for it must be greater than 10 years without any issues at all (except the dreadful change in style and design of the iPad App).

So, when looking at a new TV I was happy to hear about Sonos having a soundbar and sub available...

However :
1. No DTS - possibly forgivable for a bargain bucket, bottom of the range piece of kit... but an utterly unfathomable decision for any quality home theatre product.

That alone is bad enough.. but reading about the optical output from TV issue, reveals further problems

2. (Very? ) many TV's do not pass through Surround sound info to their optical output - see here
http://www.cnet.com/news/20-tvs-tested-which-sets-can-pass-surround-sound-to-a-sound-bar/

so, no sale...

Instead I now have a Bowers & Wilkins Panorama 2.
Does it support DTS? - Of course it does.

Does it use the TV's optical out? - No, it does not.

Their original version back in 2010 (?), did use the TV optical out but they at least have learnt and "reviewed" the home theatre market.. now with version 2, it has 3 HDMI inputs and 1 HDMI output (with ARC, so audio can be passed back from the TV on the same cable) which goes to the TV. There is also an aux/optical input.

So - my cable connection is HDMI 1 input to the Panorama 2 sounder, HDMI 2 is my Minix Neo X8-h which takes care of my Plex client for streaming all my shows and movies from my Synology NAS, HDMI 3 is spare - and my Sonos Connect is plugged in via optical to the soundbar.

(there's a phono connection on the Panorama2 for any active Sub if you want to add one).
Userlevel 7
Badge +26
Thanks for all the feedback everyone, I'll pass it on to the team for you. We're still monitoring the industry and trends but our decision not to include native DTS support remains. Few TVs have the ability to send a DTS signal from an HDMI source directly to the optical connection. In the few case where this is happens, the audio output settings on a BluRay/DVD player or game system can be set to PCM; allowing a stereo signal over HDMI to be passed through to the PLAYBAR from the TV.

In addition, some of these devices can convert that DTS signal to Dolby Digital 5.1 for surround sound. Examples of models capable of this are the Samsung BD-F6500, Samsung BD-F5900, and Samsung BD-F5700. You can find a lot of suggestions around the community, including a few in this thread.

If DTS support is paramount to your home cinema experience, the PLAYBAR may not be the right sound bar for your home.

@Kimchi10- we appreciate the dedication but updating every thread mentioning DTS is a bit counterproductive. If your PLAYBAR isn’t working out we’d love to talk to you further to see if we can help. I see you have an email incident started with our team already, they’ll be in touch soon.
I have read the thread with interest, I have a number of PLAY1 and PLAY5 speakers and was considering swapping out my ONYKO AV amp for the PLAYBAR.

I am absolutely astounded that the only option for input on the PLAYBAR is optical, no HDMI? seriously?

SONOS you SERIOUSLY need to listen to what your customers are asking for. You have positioned the PLAYBAR in the marketplace to take the role of an AV amp but in falls short of this role by a long margin. I for one will not be purchasing a PLAYBAR unless it gets HDMI in/out and DTS support.

Another sale lost!
How can we get Sonos to reconsider this? Its not a cheap product and for most people who have...
TV using Smart apps like Netflix
SkyHD
BluRay
they have three sources and they have to choose which one gets 5.1 on their £1500 Surround sound! Madness. Maybe we should all email the CEO John MacFarlane?


This thread is one of a half dozen "DTS on Playbar" threads that have been going on for years. After all that time and all those posts, the final answer for Sonos is that DTS will not be supported. Period. If you think e-mailing the CEO (who, being the CEO of a billion dollar company, probably doesn't even see his public e-mail) is going to change their mind after years of contemplation and thousands of posts in protest, then you should go ahead and e-mail him. However, don't be surprised to find out your effort should have been funneled into finding a better solution, rather than an internet crusade.
Userlevel 3
Badge +2
Ryan S you are saying that the playbar not be the right soundbar for your home.its 2015! A lot of people ask for DTS support many times. I'am very dissapointed to spend 2000 euro on my Sonos 5.1 set we want the full experience not only Dolby Digital, I just can't believe Sonos why you let your customers down. Is it really that difficult to add DTS? Or expensive? Any way I hope you are decide to add DTS support in 2016 for the Sonos Playbar.
Userlevel 7
Badge +22
Fact is theynconfirmed long ago it can't be updated to add dts. I would assume there is some 7.1 or so solution coming down the pike as playbar is long in the tooth for today's home theater.
I'm pretty sure you can take the "Not Planned" status at face value.  So far, the number of Ideas with a "Not Planned" status that have been "reconsidered" is exactly zero.  When they mark something "Not Planned" it seems to be pretty final, and certainly not something that needs any further clarification.
Badge +3
Shane,  

There are options for Blu-rays that encode the audio track in DTS if you're seeking full 5.1 via Dolby Digital.  There are several models of blu-ray player available which are capable of transcoding from DTS to Dolby, and the Xbox One is capable of doing this as well (if you happen to be an Xbox owner).

We're always evaluating industry trends for future developments but at this time the other posters are correct - there are no plans to implement DTS for the PLAYBAR in the future.
Shane,  

There are options for Blu-rays that encode the audio track in DTS if you're seeking full 5.1 via Dolby Digital.  There are several models of blu-ray player available which are capable of transcoding from DTS to Dolby, and the Xbox One is capable of doing this as well (if you happen to be an Xbox owner).

We're always evaluating industry trends for future developments but at this time the other posters are correct - there are no plans to implement DTS for the PLAYBAR in the future.

Do you happen to know if the sony ps3 does the same thing re dts? I have a new sound w95 tv and that is able to send dts Via optical and hdmi. It's a bit of a let down by your company as a lot,of the new blu ray DVDs are only encoding dts or true hd dts. I really do think you need to reconsider updating the firmware to allow dts. Surely it's not that hard to do. When I bought the tv I bout the playbar, sub and 2 play 1's and I feel rather cheated that I'm not getting the best sound possible bearing in mind what i have spent on the system.
I agree with Chris that the best and simplest solution would be for DTS support to be added. Despite being a huge Sonos fan and a Sonos reseller, I find Sonos' policy on this puzzling at best. However, my setup gets round all the issues, albeit with workarounds that shouldn't be needed. Luckily I needed to replace the Bluray player anyway. It is: 1. Panasonic Plasma TV that passes only stereo out through digital optical 2. Sonos Playbar, Sub and two Play:1s for surround sound. Play:1s on Flexson floorstands. 3. Samsung BD-F6500 Smart Bluray player, which is set to transcode DTS to Dolby Digital 5:1, so OK with disks that have only DTS soundtrack. Also streams Netflix and Amazon Prime (Lovefilm) 4. BT Vision box (I imagine a Sky satellite box could be substituted here) 5. ViewHD 3:1 optical digital switch. This avoids passing audio through the TV. 6. Connections: HDMI from BT box to TV and from Bluray to TV. Digital optical cables from TV, Bluray and BT box to digital optical switch. Digital optical cable from switch to Playbar. I also have a Logitech Harmony Touch universal remote which makes controlling whole thing easy, although this isn't essential. This is not a setup that has official Sonos approval. I have not personally experienced any issues over sound quality, nor with audio/video sync. Not that I can notice, anyway. I love my Sonos surround system!! John, Canford Cliffs Audio
Userlevel 1
Ok so there are a few options that you can do here, however part of the issue is with the TVs that most people have. Some, very limited TVs have DTS pass-through as well as DD. This means that even when sending DTS or DD TrueHD it will still be converted back to DD 2.0 through the optic out on your TV, if it allows pass-through. I have an Xbox One, but due to the 5yr old TV I have it won't allow me to pass through the setting required, which are stated on the SONOS website. To alleviate this I purchased a small 4 way HDMI switch box with optical out, that does both DTS Master and DD TrueHD. I since tested this with both the PS3 forcing it to only play DTS and using LOTR Extended and choosing DTS 6.1 from the menu. After that I used the Xbox One on Blueray and it was quiet insane. This little product was $98AUS and I think most people would like something like this added into the product.
Hi David. As a Sonos reseller (but speaking purely for myself) I would also like a more satisfactory explanation from Sonos on the DTS issue. But my experience is that most Playbar purchasers and potential purchasers don't care about this issue when I point it out, so I'm guessing Sonos don't think it should be a high business priority. (I'm not saying it's wrong for you to care about it, just saying many people don't.) Your last comment puzzles me though. Yes it is a music system - but DTS is not relevant to the Playbar's use as a music system, so you appear to be contradicting your own argument?? John, Canford Cliffs Audio
Hi Donovan. I'm not trying to defend the Sonos position, and I'm aware of the pass-through issue. As my earlier post pointed out, you can avoid pass-through by using a digital optical switch. But the Playbar's lack of support for DTS sabotages this unless you have a Blu-ray player that can transcode DTS into DD5:1. I still think you are overestimating how massive this is for the typical Playbar purchaser, as opposed to people like us who post on forums like these. John, Canford Cliffs Audio