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Did you ever want a "whole house music system"? I put mine together for <$300

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    Did you ever want a "whole house music system"? I put mine together for <$300

    If you're going to live a Dappered life, you'll want to have a Dappered place. I think music helps with that.

    For years I've wanted a whole house wireless music system, but the prices on things like Sonos put me off and also their closed universe. Yamaha Music Cast might have worked with my current Yamaha receiver, which has network capabilities--but it's not wireless, even though the speakers might not need to be wired, the receiver would be tethered to a wire. And it's another proprietary system. And the speakers start at about $250, each I think.

    I had heard of DTS's Play-Fi, but didn't pay much attention. Then I noticed Pioneer had some Play-Fi speakers for a heavily discounted price under $100, I think. I started doing some research and discovered that a bunch of equipment makers were selling Play-Fi compatible equipment. And that Klipsch made a device you could use to convert your non-Play-Fi speakers to Play-Fi. And that Phorus made a device to hook up a receiver to your wi-fi network. Both of these devices were about $30.

    And I picked up a few speakers made by Phorus for only $50 each on Amazon--regular $200. I think Phorus is a DTS subsidiary.

    As long as you have a good wi-fi signal throughout your house, set up is a breeze. It works with all the major music services and most NAS media servers. You can even set up the speakers to pair as stereo speakers in the same room.

    Results? I am so impressed. Now when we have a party, we can have the same background music playing throughout the house at low volume. Or we can blast it in one room and turn it down in others. Different people can even listen to different things in different rooms. The speakers are amazing great for $50.

    Audiophiles--you're probably covered too--but you'll need to decide for yourself. I know at least one high-end amp maker, McIntosh, makes compatible products. And for a one-time $15 fee, you can install the Play-Fi HD app on your Windows computer. It allows for loss-less music files to play over your wi-fi.

    Caveats:

    1) You'd better have a strong wi-fi signal near where you want the speakers to play. Otherwise, you'll experience drops in the sound. That's not a problem for me. I installed a Google Wi-Fi system a few months back and it works like a charm.

    2) I think Play-Fi never really caught on. I think very few new products are coming out. And I think that's why so many of the gear companies are selling the equipment so cheaply. But DTS is an establish company and they seem committed to supporting the system, even if nobody else makes new products. Once you have all the equipment you need, I don't think it's an issue if it's not being made anymore.

    Anybody else try Play-Fi? Other systems? What are your thoughts?
    WHY ARE THE GUYS IN SUITS HERE? HAS SOMETHING GONE WRONG?

    #2
    My buddy has Sonos and the software is what makes it awesome. If the company went under I dont think you would have much of a product left. I am going to look into this though. I feel like Sonos is really missing the boat on 2 points. First, no outdoor speakers. Second, leaving bluetooth off. If the Sonos speakers had a basic BT receiver int hem you could use them as double duty home and away and I could stomach that price a lot more. Plus they would still function if your wifi was down or, heaven forbid, Sonos went out of business. For the money they ask, it should be in there.

    Thanks for the tip. I am going to look into this and see how I could incorporate it with what I have. I would love to be able to use a combination of my receiver, some standalone speakers, and some BT speakers with aux in to create a multi functioning music mesh.

    Comment


      #3
      Originally posted by idvsego View Post
      My buddy has Sonos and the software is what makes it awesome. If the company went under I dont think you would have much of a product left. I am going to look into this though. I feel like Sonos is really missing the boat on 2 points. First, no outdoor speakers. Second, leaving bluetooth off. If the Sonos speakers had a basic BT receiver int hem you could use them as double duty home and away and I could stomach that price a lot more. Plus they would still function if your wifi was down or, heaven forbid, Sonos went out of business. For the money they ask, it should be in there.

      Thanks for the tip. I am going to look into this and see how I could incorporate it with what I have. I would love to be able to use a combination of my receiver, some standalone speakers, and some BT speakers with aux in to create a multi functioning music mesh.
      Yes you can do that for sure.

      Over the weekend, I hooked up the below $30 box to my Yamaha receiver with PSB speakers and a Polk subwoofer. When we had a party Saturday night, I was able to have the same Pandora music channel playing softly in the background in our living room, sitting room, backyard, upstairs hallway and a bedroom.

      It gave seamless ambiance to the entire house and several people noticed it. The entire investment (not counting the stand-alone equipment I already owned) was about $275.

      Very happy.

      https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1
      WHY ARE THE GUYS IN SUITS HERE? HAS SOMETHING GONE WRONG?

      Comment


        #4
        Originally posted by idvsego View Post
        My buddy has Sonos and the software is what makes it awesome. If the company went under I dont think you would have much of a product left. I am going to look into this though. I feel like Sonos is really missing the boat on 2 points. First, no outdoor speakers. Second, leaving bluetooth off. If the Sonos speakers had a basic BT receiver int hem you could use them as double duty home and away and I could stomach that price a lot more. Plus they would still function if your wifi was down or, heaven forbid, Sonos went out of business. For the money they ask, it should be in there.
        You pretty much hit the nail on the head with all your points. I have sonos setup in our house. Two speakers in the kitchen, two speakers in the living room and one speaker in the bedroom. When the system works, it is brilliant. But when it doesn't work, it's a pain in the ass to figure out. What do I mean by 'when it works'?

        I'd say 95% of the time, no issues. But for that 5%, I have issues with speakers being dropped for no reason. I'll be listening to the speakers then boom! Three of the four will drop out for no reason. The app doesn't recognize them and I am stuck trying to figure out what's wrong. In most cases if I have a bit of patience, the speakers come back online in 5-10 mins. If not, then I have to unplug the router and get the speakers to recognize the network again. A real pain.

        Also, sonos pushes out system updates. If you ignore them long enough, eventually sonos will prevent you from using your speakers UNLESS you accept their update. This annoys me as I figure I bought the speakers, I own them, and it should be up to me to decide what updates I want to accept and which ones i don't. But this is not the case.

        Comment


          #5
          With Boxing Day sales on around here, I picked up a Sonos Beam sound bar. With the sound bar attached to the TV, I made a surround sound system with the existing Play Ones in the living room. So far, the surround sounds seems to be working pretty good. I need to adjust the play ones a little bit to get a balanced surround sound, but what little I have played with it, I am happy with my purchase.

          I'd like to add a sub to the system too but a) living in complex with others, I worry the sub will provide too much 'oomf' and I'll annoy my neighbours and b) the sub is damn expensive.

          Comment


            #6
            Originally posted by DocDave View Post
            With Boxing Day sales on around here, I picked up a Sonos Beam sound bar. With the sound bar attached to the TV, I made a surround sound system with the existing Play Ones in the living room. So far, the surround sounds seems to be working pretty good. I need to adjust the play ones a little bit to get a balanced surround sound, but what little I have played with it, I am happy with my purchase.

            I'd like to add a sub to the system too but a) living in complex with others, I worry the sub will provide too much 'oomf' and I'll annoy my neighbours and b) the sub is damn expensive.
            Sounds like you've got a very sweet set up there!

            Not trying to talk you off the Sonos--of course you've got an investment there and Sonos by all reports makes an excellent product.

            That said, a number of manufacturers make Play-fi products you can hook up to your existing system's components and use what you have. Last night we had a little party and in addition to the small Play-fi speakers spread around the house, I also used one of the interface products to play Spotify through my main Yamaha system with some excellent PSB book shelve speakers and a Polk subwoofer. I've had that setup for almost 10 years and because of the Play-Fi products, I can still use those.

            Right now, a person can buy four or five Phorus Play-Fi speakers for the price of one Sonos speaker.
            WHY ARE THE GUYS IN SUITS HERE? HAS SOMETHING GONE WRONG?

            Comment


              #7
              I probably should have looked into Play-Fi when we moved to our new house around a year ago. I too ended up going with Sonos, and while I like it a lot, it is so so pricey. That said, I also don't have super grand plans for whole home sound. I currently have a Playbar for my living room TV and a One SL in the kitchen and another in our master bath. I'd like to eventually get a couple more to use as surrounds for the living room TV and a Sub, and MAYBE a Beam for my bedroom TV if I ever am running out of ideas for spending money (ha). We have a bonus room that I plan to eventually put a projector setup in for movie and sports watching, but I also already have a decent wired surround system that I'll be using up there and am not really concerned with tying it into the rest of the house.

              Sonos does make a product (or 2?) that you can hook up to existing components to use them on the Sonos network. But like all of their other stuff, the cost of entry is not insignificant. I'll likely get the Sonos Amp for this and a couple outdoor speakers from another brand if I decide to extend to our back porch in the future.

              Comment


                #8
                For those with SONOS, I am wondering if it can do the following situation I have. We have a TV in the living room that can be seen from the kitchen. We want a sound bar when in the family room but ideally my wife wants a small satellite speaker or something she can bring into the kitchen, so she doesn't have to blast the family room speaker when the baby is sleeping, etc. Could Sonos do this? If not, does anyone know a solution that can?

                Thanks!

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                  #9
                  [MENTION=13934]hockeysc23[/MENTION] I think it can be done. I'll give it a shot when I get home from work as I have sonos speakers in the living room and kitchen. i'll see if I can stream the TV sound to the kitchen.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Originally posted by DocDave View Post
                    [MENTION=13934]hockeysc23[/MENTION] I think it can be done. I'll give it a shot when I get home from work as I have sonos speakers in the living room and kitchen. i'll see if I can stream the TV sound to the kitchen.
                    You sir are a gentleman and a scholar. I and Ms. Hockeysc23 appreciate it. Sadly this means no more changing the channel from her Hallmark movies though haha

                    Comment


                      #11
                      [MENTION=13934]hockeysc23[/MENTION] So the answer is yes. You can stream the TV in to other rooms.

                      The TV needs to be on, playing to the sonos in the one room. Then you group that room with the other room and boom! TV sound in both rooms.

                      Hope that helps. Cheers.

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Thank you [MENTION=13399]DocDave[/MENTION]

                        Comment


                          #13
                          For anyone into the Google ecosystem, you can buy a few Chromecast or Chromecast audios (starting at $20) to use your existing speakers or receivers and you can use your Google home soeakers (which you may already have in each room)

                          Comment


                            #14
                            Quick update on the Sonos Beam and surround sound. I have been playing around with speaker placement and the settings on the app. I must say, I am really enjoying the quality of surround sound. I realize it has only been a week or so, but the surround sound is working out nicely.

                            I just ordered some stands from Amazon to strategically place the speakers in the room. This will, I hope, enhance the overall sound experience.

                            Comment


                              #15
                              The best thing about Sonos is the ease of use. My parents were able to set it up... without MY HELP! It's not cheap, but I don't think it's overly expensive either, especially with it's ability to scale. I started with it about 7 years ago in 2 rooms and have scaled to having 8 different zones now. It's nice to be able to let the kids play what they want and the adults do the same when we're having a get together.

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