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Sonos whole house help

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 

So I'm in the final stages of completing my house. It's been wired to provide audio using the xantech digi-5 system seen below. The house has 4 rooms I would like audio in with a pair of speakers already installed (by me) in each of these rooms.


Each room right now has 1 cat5 cable and 1 16/2 speaker wire going to each keypad location in each room from the basement, and then 2 16/2 speaker wire going from the keypad location to the 2 speakers in the room. At this point it is too late to change any of the wiring in the house. I have yet to purchase the actual system as I want to perhaps explore a different option.

My initial thinking was to buy 1 sonos zoneplayer and have that distributed to each of the 4 rooms, and if I need another I would buy another. But I've since realized that it might make more sense to just buy 4 sonos zoneplayers and control all the rooms straight from the sonos iOS controller. The advantage of this becomes I can independently or all together control each individual room and wouldn't have to deal with physically going to the keypad to turn on/off each room. If I were to go this route I was thinking of running each zoneplayer off a very small efficient amplifier, like the Lepai seen here:


My questions are these:

1. All my speakers are 8 ohm, thus from what I understand, by connecting my 2 speakers in each room to the 1 16/2 speaker wire that goes into the basement I am creating a 4 ohm load and going from stereo sound to mono sound. Is this correct? Would the Lepai be able to handle this or should I look into something more powerful? I have bought 1 and hooked it up and it provides more than enough power for even my largest room right now, but I don't know how it would handle a 4 ohm load. Can anyone recommend an amp that might be better?

2. Is there some limitation in connecting the 16/2 cable to 2 16/2 speaker cables that I should know about?

3. Finally, should I just go with the original system and abandon the Sonos plan as I am losing stereo sound (which granted, I probably won't even notice) and it's not what I initially wired the house for.

Thanks A LOT for any input
post #2 of 6
Personally I would skip that little amp and either do all Sonos or stick with the xantech piece. I know the xantech piece has an rs232 port on it and I would bet you could use irule & global cache or another similar to control the digi5 unit with rs232
post #3 of 6
Did you run this wire or was it run for you? Are you SURE that the home run is 16/2 and not 16/4? Very common for a 4-conductor wire to be used for those runs - if you haven't looked carefully at the cable, you may have assumed incorrectly.

post #4 of 6
Thread Starter 
I am 100% sure it is 16/2, as that's what was run for the auxiliary power for the digi-5 keypads.

ericspencer: It does indeed have an rs232 port, what software interface could I use to control the system if I were to use irule & global cache?

post #5 of 6
Ah, ok, rats...

I think I'd stick with the Xantech piece as well and use a single Sonos unit to start - you can always add more if you end up using more than one source at a time.

If you can get the serial control protocol doc from Xantech or a dealer, it should be straightforward (but will take some work) to make iRule controls for it (using a Global Cache iTach RS232).

post #6 of 6
Thread Starter 
So forget about having 1 sonos zoneplayer for every room? I'm not married to that Lepai amp. . .

Is it not worth trying to run 2 speakers off the 16/2 that I have running to each room?
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