Originally Posted by madbrain
I am running with 14 CCA, all on Ethernet. 6 are wired directly to the main router via ethernet, 8 others are remote and on powerline AV1200.
I haven't had any problem with sync timing. I can play on all 14 at once and they are in sync. When I can play at all, that is
Problem is, something always breaks with the CCAs. I don't know if it's due to the automatic firmware updates, Tidal Android app update, google home update, or something else - but the end result is, I am having a less than 30% rate of success getting to play anything at all . When I use tidal, even with a single CCA, 70% of the time, when I switch from local device audio to a CCA, it just hangs right there waiting for the network. There is no way in tidal to select a CCA before starting to play, at least none that I have found.
When the playback hang happens, nothing I have found fixes it short of powering off all the Chromecasts in the house (that's a lot of walking, and not an option if I'm in my hot tub) and rebooting the android phone.
If the hang doesn't happen the first time, it does almost assuredly when switching from one CCA to another, say, when moving around between rooms in the house.
Again, don't know if it's a tidal bug or google bug, something else, but the end result is not pretty.
Casting device audio on my Note 8 (and note 4 before it) is usually more successful - I can then play the audio from any app - with a delay.
I bought a Galaxy tab A to cast device audio - turns out it doesn't work at all on that device. Something about casting not being optimized for this device. Samsung support told me on saturday that it was supported on the Tab S3 (which costs twice as much), so I returned my tab A to Costco and bought the Tab S3 on Sunday. Of course, same problem - Samsung just lied. Apparently, device audio casting doesn't work on any Samsung tablet. The S3 is going back to Costco tomorrow, and I guess I won't be buying any tablet at all as a replacement
Frankly, all these bugs - whether they are in the CCA firmware, wifi compatibility, playback app, add up to a thoroughly useless system. I'm really sorry I spent $650 on those CCAs + ethernet interfaces. I don't have much hope that they will ever work reliably. There are just too many pieces of firmware and software from different companies involved that just don't work together. One day they work, and the next they don't, when a firmware upgrade somewhere breaks something. Google points the finger at Wifi routers when things don't work. Netgear points the finger at Google when their wifi access point doesn't work. Samsung points fingers at google when an Android feature does not work on their device. All of it is simply ridiculous. I don't know how anyone can put up with all these issues. None of my CD players ever needed a firmware update to function in 30+ years. The current technologies are a very clear step backward in usability, not to mention ability to function at all. Now, maybe the CCA works fine if you buy a Google wifi router, and run everything off a Google Nexus. I'm not spending another $ to find out, though. There are just way too many single points of failure in the system. And I didn't even mention what happens to CCAs when Internet goes down (Comcast , need I say any more ?).
And since I'm on a rant, I'll also mention the lack of gapless playback with CCA, not just in Tidal but in Spotify, and apparently other apps that explicitly support CCA (the few that there are - most casting apps support Chromecast video only). Who is the brilliant product manager that decided to leave gapless playback out of the initial CCA firmware/SDK release ? Clearly not someone who ever listened to music more than 5 minutes in a row. Of course, now, google can claim to support it in their latest google cast SDK, but the software developers wrote for the initial release which did not support it. So now we also have app makers pointing finger at google, and vice versa.
I have 10 Chromecast Audios, all hardwired. I'm also using a TP-Link Google OnHub router with three Google Wifi mesh AP's. And to Google-ize it a little more, I play almost exclusively from Google Play Music. I assure you that spending the extra money to go all-in Google will not fix your situation. I'm having the same issues you're having, and probably a little lower success rate. The only rock solid connections to the Google Home app come from an Insignia Alarm Clock and a Sony Speaker, both with Chromecast Built-in. They are running much older firmware, if that tells you anything. The alarm clock and Sony speaker show up us a cast targets, as well as any groups that contains them as members (although nothing else in the group plays when cast to other than those two speakers).
I've found if I shut everything off - 10 CCA's, 2 Nvidia Shields, a 1st gen Chromecast Video, 4 Google Homes, said Alarm Clock and a Sony Chromecast built-in - restart the OnHub router, and then turn everything back on, I can cast flawlessly for a few hours. After that, I have to do it again. I'm to the point that I'm considering z wave switches for the router and all the cast devices. I'd then build an automation to turn them off and back on every X number of hours.
And even though all my stuff is Google, it's not any better with customer service hand-offs. I had a customer service chat with the Chromecast department. Instead of blaming the router manufacturer as others in this forum have referenced, they blamed the Google router department. I'm supposed to follow up with them, but honestly, I don't see the point.
I will say one thing, though: Up until mid-December, this whole setup worked very well and I was very happy. I had sold a whole bunch of Sonos equipment on eBay last spring and basically replaced the functionality for a 10th of what I got for all of it (Sonos holds its value surprisingly well). Now I'm enduring weekly cussings from my wife when she tries to do some simple stuff like play music downstairs, and has to wait for me to do the "great restart" (on the plus side, I get A LOT of steps).
My rant may not be as long or as detailed, but frustration is very high. Found myself browsing eBay for used Sonos equipment.