Need suggestions-Bluetooth 4 zone WHA - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 8 Old 05-06-2019, 06:45 AM - Thread Starter
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Need suggestions-Bluetooth 4 zone WHA

Hi All -
Looking for suggestions on how to create a 4-zone Bluetooth audio system. I would like to accomplish the following:
- stream music from iPhone to each zone independently
- stream music from iPhone to all zones at once
- stream music from 4 different iPhones to the 4 different zones

My budget is in the $600 range.

When I built my house 18 years ago, I ran all the wiring from each speaker back to a central location. I connected those to a 4 zone speaker selector, and powered it from the 'B' speaker option from the AVR. This was an economic solution that allowed WHA.

My dream component would a a 4 zone amplifier that has a Bluetooth connection to my phone. The phone would have an app that would identify each zone, and allow me to select which zone to stream to or stream to all zones at once. I was originally going to go with 4 separate BT amps, such as these: https://www.inwallstore.com/SmartVol...trol_p/bt2.htm
or
https://gracedigital.com/shop/bluetooth-amplifier-100

But those won't allow me to stream to all the zones at the same time. Any suggestions? Does my dream comoponent exist?
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post #2 of 8 Old 05-06-2019, 09:58 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FineDesign View Post
Hi All -
Looking for suggestions on how to create a 4-zone Bluetooth audio system. I would like to accomplish the following:
- stream music from iPhone to each zone independently
- stream music from iPhone to all zones at once
- stream music from 4 different iPhones to the 4 different zones

My budget is in the $600 range.

When I built my house 18 years ago, I ran all the wiring from each speaker back to a central location. I connected those to a 4 zone speaker selector, and powered it from the 'B' speaker option from the AVR. This was an economic solution that allowed WHA.

My dream component would a a 4 zone amplifier that has a Bluetooth connection to my phone. The phone would have an app that would identify each zone, and allow me to select which zone to stream to or stream to all zones at once. I was originally going to go with 4 separate BT amps, such as these: https://www.inwallstore.com/SmartVol...trol_p/bt2.htm
or
https://gracedigital.com/shop/bluetooth-amplifier-100

But those won't allow me to stream to all the zones at the same time. Any suggestions? Does my dream comoponent exist?
Bluetooth has a lot of issues to do what you want. If you take your phone and walk out of range to one of the receivers that has to be relatively close by, audio will break up and stop.

You are much better off using Chromecast Audios or Airplay receivers that send the stream over WiFi, or like chromecast, just act as a controls once the the stream is started.

You will never be happy trying to use BT in this way.

thanks,
mike
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post #3 of 8 Old 05-08-2019, 10:52 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by MikeSM View Post
You are much better off using Chromecast Audios or Airplay receivers that send the stream over WiFi, or like chromecast, just act as a controls once the the stream is started.
Thanks for the response. I'm not familiar with streaming to Airplay receivers. I have a Chromecast connected to my TV, and I stream photos from my phone to it, but I have not used it for audio.

I'm trying to make it simple to hear music on the in-ceiling or deck speakers, similar to when a person brings over their Bose speaker, and connects to it via bluetooth to play music. I want the ability to play on one pair of speakers or the whole house via some type of streaming connection. I'd like the versatility to have my wife playing her music in the kitchen, and my son playing his music on the deck. I'd like the flexibility to pick which speakers play, whether it's the kitchen and dining room together, or just the living room by itself. Is there something out there that can accomplish this? Possibly some type of bluetooth controlled matrix switcher?
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post #4 of 8 Old 05-08-2019, 01:22 PM
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Originally Posted by FineDesign View Post
Thanks for the response. I'm not familiar with streaming to Airplay receivers. I have a Chromecast connected to my TV, and I stream photos from my phone to it, but I have not used it for audio.

I'm trying to make it simple to hear music on the in-ceiling or deck speakers, similar to when a person brings over their Bose speaker, and connects to it via bluetooth to play music. I want the ability to play on one pair of speakers or the whole house via some type of streaming connection. I'd like the versatility to have my wife playing her music in the kitchen, and my son playing his music on the deck. I'd like the flexibility to pick which speakers play, whether it's the kitchen and dining room together, or just the living room by itself. Is there something out there that can accomplish this? Possibly some type of bluetooth controlled matrix switcher?
FineDesign, yes. The way to do this is with chromecast audio devices. Your mobile phones, tablets, PC's can just use the cast button to send the source to the speaker you want. You can given send it to multiple speakers and they will play back in sync. BT is the wrong answer for this.

If you only care about iOS devices, you can attach airplay recievers amplifier channel instead of a Chromecast Audio (not a HDMI chromecast). But almost any streaming service or media app (e.g. Plex, etc..) works with chromecast now.

Just look at some of the threads here: https://www.avsforum.com/forum/36-ho...n-project.html and https://www.avsforum.com/forum/36-ho...use-audio.html

It's easily possible to do what you want. Bluetooth will not work well for this function.

thanks,
mike
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post #5 of 8 Old 05-08-2019, 06:04 PM
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As others have said, stay away from bluetooth as the range is terrible, and will def cause issues.
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post #6 of 8 Old 05-10-2019, 02:15 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by MikeSM View Post
FineDesign, yes. The way to do this is with chromecast audio devices. Your mobile phones, tablets, PC's can just use the cast button to send the source to the speaker you want.

Just look at some of the threads here: https://www.avsforum.com/forum/36-ho...n-project.html
thanks,
mike
Mike - Thanks for the links. As I read through the Chromecast Audio thread, I got more excited as it appeared to be the solution I was looking for. Until I searched for Chromecast Audio, and found that Google killed in in January, and you can no longer purchase the CCA's, except on eBay. Are there other sources or other options for similar device? I'd prefer not to be limited to the AirPlay devices.
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post #7 of 8 Old 05-10-2019, 03:11 PM
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Originally Posted by FineDesign View Post
Mike - Thanks for the links. As I read through the Chromecast Audio thread, I got more excited as it appeared to be the solution I was looking for. Until I searched for Chromecast Audio, and found that Google killed in in January, and you can no longer purchase the CCA's, except on eBay. Are there other sources or other options for similar device? I'd prefer not to be limited to the AirPlay devices.
I suspect others are going to step in and build them. Not everyone has the same margin needs as Google on hardware. You can use an HDMI audio extractor on a normal chromecast, but the Chromecast audio devices have pretty nice DACs, and work very well. So if you need to act now, I would just buy chromecast audios on ebay and run with them. They are still the best solution now.

good luck,
mike
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post #8 of 8 Old 05-12-2019, 07:44 PM
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Maybe start small and build out. Sonos would probably be best, maybe go with used amps since they've replaced with newer models.

Sticking in line with what was suggested earlier Id say airport express units and airplay to those.

As others mentioned bluetooth is not recommended.
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