Sonos Port

scene

Moderator
Sep 25, 2008
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Sigh. Bit disappointing to read this review.

I've got three Connects and have found them a great way to get streaming music & internet radio to my AV & HiFi systems. The new Ports sound like Sonos have gone "meh" - we need to provide an upgrade path for the existing users, but they're not our core market...

I really think it's time to look at Bluesound or Audio Pro

Actually: Can WHF do a head-to-head on Bluesound/Audio Pro/Sonos...
 

jacobmorrison

Well-known member
Feb 6, 2009
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Wait, so the sound quality issues with the Port aren't primarily down to the DAC or analogue circuitry but with it's ability to handle ones and zeroes in the digital domain? Doesn't this turn all science and audiophile orthodoxy on its head? I shouldn't surprised I suppose, this from the magazine that can "see" differences in HDMI cables.

I've upgraded a Connect to a Port just to take advantage of the trade in deal and looking ahead to future Sonos support for "high res" audio. Sound quality wise the two were very similar. The Port doesn't get hot, the analogue output is surprisingly good against the Musical Fidelity MX DAC I have connected to it, and via this DAC the sound quality is superb, teeming with detail with a wide sound stage. Of course the Sonos OS remains excellent.

Ludicrous to recommend a Sonos Amp over the Port to integrate Sonos into an existing hifi. Presumably this is the new 4* reviewed Sonos Amp with the same digital circuitry as the Port, which contains an amplification stage that you wouldn't use as you'd be integrating with an existing setup, and you'd be paying £200 extra for?

Sigh....
 

scene

Moderator
Sep 25, 2008
695
121
19,070
Wait, so the sound quality issues with the Port aren't primarily down to the DAC or analogue circuitry but with it's ability to handle ones and zeroes in the digital domain? Doesn't this turn all science and audiophile orthodoxy on its head? I shouldn't surprised I suppose, this from the magazine that can "see" differences in HDMI cables.

I've upgraded a Connect to a Port just to take advantage of the trade in deal and looking ahead to future Sonos support for "high res" audio. Sound quality wise the two were very similar. The Port doesn't get hot, the analogue output is surprisingly good against the Musical Fidelity MX DAC I have connected to it, and via this DAC the sound quality is superb, teeming with detail with a wide sound stage. Of course the Sonos OS remains excellent.

Ludicrous to recommend a Sonos Amp over the Port to integrate Sonos into an existing hifi. Presumably this is the new 4* reviewed Sonos Amp with the same digital circuitry as the Port, which contains an amplification stage that you wouldn't use as you'd be integrating with an existing setup, and you'd be paying £200 extra for?

Sigh....
So the Port is an OK piece of kit in your opinion - better than the mediocre review WHF have given it?
 

jacobmorrison

Well-known member
Feb 6, 2009
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So the Port is an OK piece of kit in your opinion - better than the mediocre review WHF have given it?
Yes it's good. If you already have sonos in your house and want what this device offers, ignore this review (which is the first time in many, many years reading this magazine I've ever been prompted to say this).
 

Darwinia

Member
Mar 20, 2020
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Wait, so the sound quality issues with the Port aren't primarily down to the DAC or analogue circuitry but with it's ability to handle ones and zeroes in the digital domain? Doesn't this turn all science and audiophile orthodoxy on its head? I shouldn't surprised I suppose, this from the magazine that can "see" differences in HDMI cables.
I've upgraded a Connect to a Port just to take advantage of the trade in deal and looking ahead to future Sonos support for "high res" audio. Sound quality wise the two were very similar. The Port doesn't get hot, the analogue output is surprisingly good against the Musical Fidelity MX DAC I have connected to it, and via this DAC the sound quality is superb, teeming with detail with a wide sound stage. Of course the Sonos OS remains excellent.
Ludicrous to recommend a Sonos Amp over the Port to integrate Sonos into an existing hifi. Presumably this is the new 4* reviewed Sonos Amp with the same digital circuitry as the Port, which contains an amplification stage that you wouldn't use as you'd be integrating with an existing setup, and you'd be paying £200 extra for?
Sigh....
You really need to read this review again instead of mischaracterizing it to defend something you have paid for.
For one they did not say what you claim they said about the Amp.
The Connected very poor and dated sound quality so saying the Port is as good isn't saying much.
$450 for the Port is also an idiotic price for what it is.
 

jacobmorrison

Well-known member
Feb 6, 2009
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You really need to read this review again instead of mischaracterizing it to defend something you have paid for.
For one they did not say what you claim they said about the Amp.
The Connected very poor and dated sound quality so saying the Port is as good isn't saying much.
$450 for the Port is also an idiotic price for what it is.
"If you are set on incorporating your hi-fi system in a Sonos multi-room set-up, we’d recommend spending a little more on the four-star Sonos Amp. While it isn’t perfect, it is more accomplished, whether or not you ever make use of its added features. "

How have I mischaracterized this quotation? If you want to add to your Sonos network and keep your current hifi they have recommended spending an extra £200 for what is the same device with an amplication stage that you wouldn't use.
 

jacobmorrison

Well-known member
Feb 6, 2009
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Also, given that the Sonos Amp has no digital output or tape output that could connect to an existing hi-fi system, it cannot be connected to an existing hifi system without replacing your current amplifier. WhatHiFi should make this clear.
 

scene

Moderator
Sep 25, 2008
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19,070
"If you are set on incorporating your hi-fi system in a Sonos multi-room set-up, we’d recommend spending a little more on the four-star Sonos Amp. While it isn’t perfect, it is more accomplished, whether or not you ever make use of its added features. "

How have I mischaracterized this quotation? If you want to add to your Sonos network and keep your current hifi they have recommended spending an extra £200 for what is the same device with an amplication stage that you wouldn't use.
Agree - what's the point of buying an Amp to plug into an amp?

Are WHF saying that the Amp's line out / digital out is better than the one on the Port?
I'd be surprised if the two didn't have nigh on identical electronics apart from the amplification stage...

And has jm said "given that the Sonos Amp has no digital output or tape output that could connect to an existing hi-fi system" it would be a complete chocolate tea pot for plugging in to my existing amp.

If the Port will support Hi-Res sound with the S2 update, it's got to be better than the Connect - I can plug the hi-res digital output into my Marantz (say) and use its excellent DAC...
 

Bialykot

Well-known member
Feb 4, 2010
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18,520
Oh blimey. Digits aren’t digits anymore. Perhaps it would ‘sound better’ with $10k cables attached (but only if they’re advertised in WHF).
 

BenLaw

Well-known member
Nov 21, 2010
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I’ve always thought ‘timing’ is one of the more nebulous and ambiguous words used by whathifi reviews. Even when I’ve tried to get my head round it, I’ve never understood it to mean that a 4/4 beat is ‘out of time’, as this review suggests. How would that even be technically possible?
 

EnriqueC

Member
Mar 21, 2020
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0
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On the west side of the Atlantic, this review sounds like a bunch of Bla, Bla, Bla....
A Port using the Digital output to Decent DAC with a Decent Amp & Speaker + TIDAL Service, sounds equal or BETTER than Bluesound with a MUCH BETTER & RELIABLE user interface.
BTW it will also sound WAY better than the SONOS AMP
 

manicm

Well-known member
May 1, 2008
449
7
18,895
Wait, so the sound quality issues with the Port aren't primarily down to the DAC or analogue circuitry but with it's ability to handle ones and zeroes in the digital domain? Doesn't this turn all science and audiophile orthodoxy on its head? I shouldn't surprised I suppose, this from the magazine that can "see" differences in HDMI cables.

I've upgraded a Connect to a Port just to take advantage of the trade in deal and looking ahead to future Sonos support for "high res" audio. Sound quality wise the two were very similar. The Port doesn't get hot, the analogue output is surprisingly good against the Musical Fidelity MX DAC I have connected to it, and via this DAC the sound quality is superb, teeming with detail with a wide sound stage. Of course the Sonos OS remains excellent.

Ludicrous to recommend a Sonos Amp over the Port to integrate Sonos into an existing hifi. Presumably this is the new 4* reviewed Sonos Amp with the same digital circuitry as the Port, which contains an amplification stage that you wouldn't use as you'd be integrating with an existing setup, and you'd be paying £200 extra for?

Sigh....
There are many things that can affect sound quality besides just the DAC. Power supply, circuitry isolation etc. If any of these come short jitter, among other things, will come into play and affect those digits.

So nothing WHF has stated turns knowledge on its head. BTW, many have stated that adding a DAC to the previous Connect could also only do so much for the sound.
 

Dave Gypsum

Member
Mar 27, 2020
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0
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There are many things that can affect sound quality besides just the DAC. Power supply, circuitry isolation etc. If any of these come short jitter, among other things, will come into play and affect those digits.

So nothing WHF has stated turns knowledge on its head. BTW, many have stated that adding a DAC to the previous Connect could also only do so much for the sound.
So you are saying that the stream of 1s and 0s that come out of the digital output of this box are somehow inferior?
How does that work then?
 

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