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Official SONOS owners thread - Page 6

post #151 of 939
Anyone heard, auditioned or owns a DAC from Tube Audio Design with their Sonos gear? I'm interested specifically with the TADAC or PreDAC products. I am looking to use this to bypass my HT pre/pro and connect directly with my amp with one of my ZP80's.

I've read about the Cullen modified zp's and PS DACs, not sure which would be the better route to go OR if I would even notice any change...

Thoughts?

Thanks!
post #152 of 939
I think everyone agrees that an outboard DAC can improve the sound of a Sonos ZP-80 or ZP-90. Mods are a little more controversial.

I am also wondering about modifications like Cullen or Empirical Audio's Pace Car.

There seems to be a few main issues addressed by either or both;

1) Jitter

2) Power Supply

3) Upsampling

There have been many unsubstantiated claims that the Sonos units introduce high emounts of jitter. To my understanding, Stereophile sent the unit out to be tested and the results showed that the Sonos units actually exhibit very low jitter.

Personally, I am not clear on whether the jitter reduction claimed by the modders is really lower than an unmodified Sonos unit.

I believe both modifications address the Power Supply, but a study of the advertising reveals very little before and after info that isn't purely anecdotal.

I am also not sure how upsampling would improve the signal. My understanding is that it is generally believed by audiophiles -- I include myself here -- want to keep the original signal as pure and unprocessed as possible, so I am not sure what upsampling would add and -- again -- a study of the advertising reveals very little in the way of facts; no white papers, nothing.

A search of the web reveals very few actual testimonials from owners using these mods, so they do not seem to be in widespread use.
post #153 of 939
Hi Guys. I'm considering a Sonos system and I need a recommendation please. One of my zones will be out near my pool. I'm probably going to go with the new Sonos factory touchscreen controller indoors, but I need a recommendation for my outdoor controller.

Option 1: Old Sonos controller (CR100?)
I spoke with Sonos and they said their newer touchscreen controller is definitely not waterproof, or even splash proof for that matter. They did confirm that the older controller is sealed and splashproof. Sonos says they still have inventory of the old controller available for sale, or I could pick one up on an auction site, etc. Seems like they can be had in the $200-$250 range with charging cradle.

Option 2: Ipod Touch with Otterbox waterproof case
It looks like the Otterbox for the Ipod Touch is the real deal:http://cell-phones.toptenreviews.com...pod-touch.html An 8GB touch with the Otterbox would be roughly the same price ($229 + $40).

If I went with the touch, it seems like I'd be getting more for the money because I could use it to watch movies while traveling, and use it as a regular ipod for audio (although this is not critical as I have Nano and Shuffle for working out, running, etc.). However, the Sonos controller would only be good for controlling the system...nothing else.

Which would you recommend and why? I'm concerned that the touch will not react as quickly, that the Sonos application on the touch is not as intuitive, etc. Please give me your thoughts. Any reason not to just go with the touch and waterproof case? Thanks for the help gents.
post #154 of 939
I have both options 1 and 2 as I just picked up an Otterbox case to go with my touch. I am curious how much the wireless range is impacted if at all, I'll test it this weekend. The Ipod/Itouch application is execellent in my opinon.
post #155 of 939
Quote:
Originally Posted by rsbeck View Post

1) Jitter

2) Power Supply

3) Upsampling

1) Jitter - irrelevant, if you can hear any effect of jitter, something is broke... but if you are a Jitter True Believer just use a DAC that re-clocks the incoming signal... all your jitter will be gone... nothing lost...

2) Power Supply
- in the DAC it is important... in the ZP80/90 it's a non-issue... Power supplies only matter to Analog, and even there, their effects can be minimized through proper design techniques... if a noisy supply is able to effect the digital side, there is something horribly wrong with it and it needs to be replaced before it explodes...

3) Upsampling - why? it wont add anything, at best it wont make it any worse...
post #156 of 939
Hello All,
I am installing a new 3 zone system in my house. I have everything wired. One zone will be a 5.1 surround the 2nd zone 2 speakers and the last zone will be a 4 speaker set up outside. Does Sonos have the ability to be connected to my reciever and play different music in the three different zones. If not what would you suggest.
post #157 of 939
I'm very confused by your question. Could you rephrase it or expand on it?
post #158 of 939
I have 3 different areas in my home I would like to listen to music. Can sonos help me listen to 3 different stations at the same. Sorry for the confusion.
post #159 of 939
Quote:
Originally Posted by panther63 View Post

I have 3 different areas in my home I would like to listen to music. Can sonos help me listen to 3 different stations at the same. Sorry for the confusion.

Yes it can. And if your AVR can do 5 speaker stereo, you could play your 2 channel sonos music to all 5 speakers, if you wish...
post #160 of 939
Quote:
Originally Posted by panther63 View Post

I have 3 different areas in my home I would like to listen to music. Can sonos help me listen to 3 different stations at the same. Sorry for the confusion.

Sonos can help you listen to the same music in all three zones or different music in each zone and you can control which music in which zone and how loud wirelessly with a hand held controller or from the desktop of your wireless laptop or desktop computer.

You can use the amplifier section of your receiver, Sonos zone players with built in amps or you can use dedicated outboard amps. You can also feed the digital signal to your receiver and have your receiver turn it into 5.1 multichannel using pro-logic and other such codecs.

If you want to listen to 11 channels of music simultaneously, you'll need 11 channels of amplification.

There are Sonos zone players with two channel amplifiers built in and there are Sonos zone players without amplifiers. You'll need to decide which route you want to take.
post #161 of 939
Quote:
Originally Posted by panther63 View Post

I have 3 different areas in my home I would like to listen to music. Can sonos help me listen to 3 different stations at the same. Sorry for the confusion.

Sonos is capable of playing different music, or the same music, or any combination thereof, in up to 32 different "Zones" in your home. Each Zone is capable of playing music from your personal library, or content from various online sources (Rhapsody, Napster, Last.FM, Sirius, internet radio, Podcasts, etc). Each Zone can play independently, or it can be linked to other Zone(s) and played in perfect sync all over the house. You can play this content via your own receiver/amplification (ZP90) or through speakers using Sonos's amplified player (ZP120). All this can be controlled via up to 32 of the following: The new touchscreen CR200 controller, the free Desktop Controller, or your iPhone/Touch via the free Sonos iPhone app.
post #162 of 939
So I would need a ZP90 plugged into my reciever to get the three zones working independently. What type of reciever would you suggest for this set up.
post #163 of 939
Quote:
Originally Posted by panther63 View Post

So I would need a ZP90 plugged into my reciever to get the three zones working independently. What type of reciever would you suggest for this set up.

1 ZP90 plugged into a receiver = 1 zone.. what you doing for the other zones? just using two ZP120's?

as far as what receiver would I suggest? if I was going to buy a receiver, it would have to be the Lexicon RV-5 I really like the L7 codec...

but really, any receiver will be fine... you can usually get refurb HK's cheap...
post #164 of 939
Actually, a ZP120 can handle up to four 8 Ohm speakers at once, so the 4 speaker zone could be one ZP120.
post #165 of 939
Quote:
Originally Posted by panther63 View Post

So I would need a ZP90 plugged into my reciever to get the three zones working independently. What type of reciever would you suggest for this set up.

If you want to control three different zones, you will need at least three different zone players.

In the one zone where you want surround sound, I would suggest a ZP-90, which comes without internal amplifiers. You will use either the RCA or Toslink digital output from the ZP-90 and connect it to the corresponding digital input of your receiver. Your receiver will need to either always be on or you will need to turn it on either manually or through some other remote system -- the Sonos cannot manage that.

Your receiver has nothing, zero, zip, nada, zilch to do with managing three zones.

Your Sonos system will make it possible for you to control three zones.

In your other two zones, you will need either a ZP-120 Sonos Zone Player with internal amplifier, or you will need ZP-90's + outboard amplification.
post #166 of 939
5.1 Surround Set-up.....

ZP-90 + Receiver + 5 speakers + Sub-woofer

4 Speaker zone...

Either:

ZP-120 + 4 speakers

Or...

ZP-90 + 4 channels of amplification + 4 speakers

Two speaker zone...

Either

ZP-120 + two speakers...

Or...

ZP-90 + two channels of amplification + two speakers.

You'd be able to link two or all three zones together and play the same music in all of the linked zones or different music in each zone. You'd only need the Sonos controller -- whatever you pick -- to control two of the zones, but you'd need the Sonos remote plus either manual control of the receiver or some way to remotely control the receiver, too, in order to run the surround set-up. Once you set the receiver, you could then control the choice of music (and volume) from the Sonos controller.
post #167 of 939
Thread Starter 
just ordered the bu 250 after selling my original controller. will be posting a high res pic of it like i did in the first post. im still absolutely amazed by this system everytime i use it.

i recenetly switched from rhapsody to napster though since now instead of 14 a month for rhapsody streaming i get napster streaming plsu 5 free songs a month....basically its like buying 4 new songs a month and getting free use of napster
post #168 of 939
When is Sonos going to allow 24/96 or greater?
post #169 of 939
Quote:
Originally Posted by golfugh View Post

When is Sonos going to allow 24/96 or greater?

When the amount of people needing that functionality is enough to justify the expense to Sonos in R&D, manufacturing, and support.

In other words, probably never.
post #170 of 939
I jumped in feet first purchasing:
1- BU250 bundle
6- ZP120's

All wired to inceiling Martin Logan
Helos20's which I already have 12 sitting here waiting for install. I have an additional Helos20 incase I want to add a zone to the Kitchen in the future. As it is now the livingroom and kitchen are open to each other.

Zones:
Zone 1 Master Bedroom; 1- ZP120; 2- Helos20
Zone 2 Master Bath; 1- ZP120; 1- Helos20
Zone 3 Hall Bath; 1- ZP120; 1- Helos20
Zone 4 Bedroom 2; 1- ZP120; 1- Helos20
Zone 5 Bedroom 3; 1- ZP120; 1- Helos20
Zone 6 Living Room; 1- ZP90; Denon 4810; 5-Helos20
Zone 7 Garage; 1- ZP120; 2- Helos20
Will Add the following at a later date:
Zone 8 Patio; 1- ZP120; 2- Speakercraft OE8 One
Zone 9 Hot Tub; 1- ZP120; 2- Speakercraft OE8 One

Everything will be installed in a central AV closet, if I have enough room in there since all the HT equipment is in this closet. Alternate location will be in the garage attic with all the ZP120's installed in a Mid-Atlantic WRP-8 or SBX wall mount cabinet.
post #171 of 939
Quote:
Originally Posted by rsbeck View Post

I think everyone agrees that an outboard DAC can improve the sound of a Sonos ZP-80 or ZP-90. Mods are a little more controversial.

I am also wondering about modifications like Cullen or Empirical Audio's Pace Car.

There seems to be a few main issues addressed by either or both;

1) Jitter

2) Power Supply

3) Upsampling

There have been many unsubstantiated claims that the Sonos units introduce high emounts of jitter. To my understanding, Stereophile sent the unit out to be tested and the results showed that the Sonos units actually exhibit very low jitter.

Personally, I am not clear on whether the jitter reduction claimed by the modders is really lower than an unmodified Sonos unit.

I believe both modifications address the Power Supply, but a study of the advertising reveals very little before and after info that isn't purely anecdotal.

I am also not sure how upsampling would improve the signal. My understanding is that it is generally believed by audiophiles -- I include myself here -- want to keep the original signal as pure and unprocessed as possible, so I am not sure what upsampling would add and -- again -- a study of the advertising reveals very little in the way of facts; no white papers, nothing.

A search of the web reveals very few actual testimonials from owners using these mods, so they do not seem to be in widespread use.

A good DAC can make all the difference.

The problem with the CD standard is that sampling is at 44.1kHz which
means sampling artifacts appear at 22.05kHz. CD players must implement
a very sharp cutoff filter such that the output is about 100dB below full scale
@22.05 kHz . The worst case is the audio is fullscale at 20kHz and
the filter must ensure the aliasing noise is 100dB below this @22.05kHz.

The task is split between the digital filter before the DAC and the analog
filter after. In the digital domain the audio data is a stream of numbers
and the filter is a long mathematical equation with lots of coefficients.
These are grouped into filter taps and each tap is a processing stage.
The steeper the filter the more taps are required and it can get
expensive

One way to reduce the steepness of the filter is to move the sampling
artifacts out to a higher frequency significantly above 20kHz. The
cheapest way is to resample the data stream. In the case of 96kHz
this moves the aliasing artifacts to 48kHz and allows a very significant
reduction of the slope (100db over 2.2kHz vs 100db over 28kHz, about
1 order of magnitude)

If we were to resample, the steepness and hence complexity of the
digital filter downstream is reduced as there is less processing to do.
However this has to be traded off against the complexity of implementing the
resampling.

So upsampling is another method to dealing with the problem of the
low sampling frequency specified by the CD standard.

As to whether upsampling will bring additional sonic benefits, that
depends on the downstream DAC's ability to perform the filtering
at 44.1kHz with a minimal of artifacts. If it does a good
job upsampling is not needed.

The newer DACs that can operate at higher sampling rates typically
optimize their digital filters for the higher sample rates. In addition
the Delta-Sigma conversion method is quite commonly used
It works better (lowerinband noise) if the converter is clocked at
a higher frequency, and this frequency is proportional to
the sampling rate.

My ZP90 is connected to an Onkyo 875. It uses the TI/BB PCM1796,
a great DAC if a high sample rate is used.
This gives barely passable 44.1kHz performance. I use a variant
of the Monarchy DIP which resamples to 96kHz, the performance
changes with it.

I can get equivalent performance with a Goldmund DA96 without
resampling. This DAC has custom digital and analog filters
post #172 of 939
Quote:
Originally Posted by boblopes View Post

Anyone heard, auditioned or owns a DAC from Tube Audio Design with their Sonos gear? I'm interested specifically with the TADAC or PreDAC products. I am looking to use this to bypass my HT pre/pro and connect directly with my amp with one of my ZP80's.

I've read about the Cullen modified zp's and PS DACs, not sure which would be the better route to go OR if I would even notice any change...

Thoughts?

Thanks!

I went through exactly the same debate about 6 months back and researched it pretty extensively (on the net). If you have followed any of the Zissou-led threads elsewhere on AVS, you will see a fair amount of writing on the TADAC and its virtues (search for Zissou and TADAC). I have also posted some pretty detailed observations

I finally ordered a TADAC - and also almost ordered a Cullen mod or a PaceCar JUST to compare for my own ears and then sanity prevailed. I love audiophile sound, but am not a devoted tester like others on this forum! I had told myself that I would order a Cullen mod etc if I could still hear differences between Sonos and a CD player. I can't so I am sticking with the TADAC

My observations:
a) The difference of adding an outboard DAC to Sonos is sublime, in a good audio system (i.e. good speakers). I can easily A/B test Sonos solo or Sonos using my Parasound Halo processor's DACS or Sonos using my B&K processors DACs or Sonos using the TADAC. There is diffference between each of them. Biggest difference is with TADAC in the chain. the TADAC, quite simply put, is by far the biggest $1,000 upgrade I have EVER installed in my system (and I've spent $20-30k, maybe more, on gear in the last 4-5 years)
b) The TADAC is a DAC and also a 2-channel pre-amp, which I love. So I can use it as a 2 channel pre-amp and entirely by-pass the Parasound Halo - which is what I do whenever I listen to music. I can also use it as a 2-ch preamp when watching TV and the sound is BY FAR better than my 7 channel $4,000 Parasound Halo (except of course that you dont get 7 channel sound, which I am coming to believe is overrated anyway). Parasound (and other audiophile processors I have owned and heard) goes to a lot of effort to try and deliver high quality, audiophile 2-ch sound - but the end result is so far inferior to the TADAC it doesnt event merit comparison
c) TADAC has a Tube-based DAC/pre-pro which appeals to me for reasons i wont get into. I have AB-ed it with the DACs in parasound/B&K processors but not versus any of the other terrific standalone DACs. But its the only affordable Tube-based DAC and I believe the sound is quite different. is the sound better? You will have to be the judge (I think it is)
d) TADAC is not without disadvantages. Some will say it looks Fugly. Its remote can be finicky. I have not managed to seamlessly integrate the remote into my universal remote. But I have not had any other use-ability issues

So i am very content using Sonos+TADAC in my system. I cannot now hear the difference (at all) between playing a CD or playing through Sonos+TADAC and the sound is sublime. For 2-channel, the sound is literally going from Sonos to the TADAC to my Martin Logan speakers and I love the simplicity of that. For multi-channel sound, it goes from Sonos to my Parasound.

hope that helps
post #173 of 939
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jgatie View Post

Actually, a ZP120 can handle up to four 8 Ohm speakers at once, so the 4 speaker zone could be one ZP120.

How would one do that?
The specs say:
Rated output - 110W RMS (2x55W continuous average power into 8 ohms, THD+N<0.02%)*

I would love to connect 4 speakers, but there are only outputs for 2.
post #174 of 939
Quote:
Originally Posted by Everdog View Post

How would one do that?
The specs say:
Rated output - 110W RMS (2x55W continuous average power into 8 ohms, THD+N<0.02%)*

I would love to connect 4 speakers, but there are only outputs for 2.

Just double up on the wires. For the two right speakers, put two positive leads into the positive post and two negative leads in the negative post. Same for the two left speakers. Just make sure the speakers are rated for 8 Ohms. You can also attach the leads to banana plugs (two per plug), then pry off the caps on the posts and plug the banana plugs in.
post #175 of 939
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jgatie View Post

Just double up on the wires. For the two right speakers, put two positive leads into the positive post and two negative leads in the negative post. Same for the two left speakers. Just make sure the speakers are rated for 8 Ohms. You can also attach the leads to banana plugs (two per plug), then pry off the caps on the posts and plug the banana plugs in.

OK, this had me confused, but then I read that the ZP120 supports 4 ohm speakers...and 2 - 8 Ohm speakers is just like 1 - 4 Ohm.


I think this is from Sonos support...
Quote:


The Sonos ZonePlayers can support any speaker impedance between 4 and 16 Ohms so it is possible to wire two 8 Ohm speakers in parallel (resulting in a total impedance of 4 Ohm's). Sonos does not recommend wiring speakers in series as it will result in poor sound quality.
*This applies to the amplified ZP120 and ZP100 only.
post #176 of 939
Any way to set up 2 pairs of speakers and control volume independently? I want one ZP120 and want to wire it to ceiling speakers in my kitchen and dining room. I want the same music (so same zone) but would love to be able to control volumes independently.
post #177 of 939
Quote:
Originally Posted by RipleyK View Post

Any way to set up 2 pairs of speakers and control volume independently? I want one ZP120 and want to wire it to ceiling speakers in my kitchen and dining room. I want the same music (so same zone) but would love to be able to control volumes independently.

You would have to wire something called an "impedance matching volume control" to each speaker pair. Here's a link to some examples:

impedance matching volume controls @amazon
post #178 of 939
A while back I installed a ZP80 and used the combination of a desktop, laptop, and an iPhone for control and it has worked flawlessly. So I purchased a CR200 just so I would have an "always on" controller, but I'm having a problem with the CR200 staying connected to the network if I get too far from the ZP80. I have walked all through the house with the iPhone and the CR200 and the iPhone maintains connection almost everywhere and I can walk at least 100 feet outside before loosing connection. The CR200 range is significantly less and very frustrating. Anyone else have this issue? I am at 3.1 release. When I'm close enough to the ZP80 the CR200 works as advertised, but I'm frustrated that a 3rd party device works better than SONOS's own proprietary device. Is it possible that I have made a set-up error? I have changed all the channels hoping to get a stronger connection with no improvement. Any advice?
post #179 of 939
I am about to purchase a Sonos 250 bundle with an additional bridge and zone player s5 and have a "theory" question regarding the ZP90 digital outputs.

First a little background:

What RipleyK plans on doing is exactly what I will be doing with the ZP120 in my master bedroom and bathroom. I plan on hooking up the Sonos ZP120 to a Dayton SDP4 4-Way Speaker Distribution Panel. This will be used for a "clean look" installation. From the back of the Distribution Panel, I will be hooking up two impedance matching volume controls (all of these will most likely be purchased from Parts-Express.com), one located in my bathroom and one in my bedroom. From there, I will be hooking up a pair of in-ceiling speakers to each volume control.

The Zone Player S5 will be used in my dining room on my first floor. The bridge will be used to connect directly to my home network. The ZP90 will be connected to my home theater receiver (Pioneer VSX-03TXH) that is in my first floor family room that also will have its zone 2 outputted to a speaker distribution panel and two outdoor impedance matching volume controls.

The ZP90 has two digital outputs, one being a coaxial output and the other is a optical output. Can I use both of these at the same time? I want to obviously use one of these connections (probably the optical) for my family room receiver, but I would like to also use the other digital connection (coaxial) for my downstairs, two zone receiver setup. Can this be done, saving me $500?
post #180 of 939
Mike

Yes you can use optical and digital outputs at the same time to feed two different amps.

This was recently discussed on the Sonos forums at sonos.com
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