Jump to content
tbone_

Whole house music receiver/amp search - multi zone

Recommended Posts

Does anyone make a receiver/amp that is WiFi connected (so it will do Pandora, Spotify, etc) AND support 5 independent zones? By independent I mean I just need independent volume controls on each zone, but they can all play the same source. Oh and it needs to be app controlled.

 

I have an Onkyo that does everything except the 5 zones. It only has 2 zones and so I have to run one of the zones through a splitter and adjust volumes and toggle each zone off and on manually.

 

Seems like such a thing would exist but I have had any luck finding it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Just buy into sonos

I’ve looked at that but wouldn’t it require an amp for each zone? Seems pricey.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Sonos might seem pricey but goddamn it just works.  I have it all over the house and it is absolutely independent. I only have one 'play' device that I use for outside that drives an amp/speakers that were already in the house when we bought it.  I have 9 others spread throughout a 3 level house that are stand alone.  I use one as a stereo pair, have one sound bar with 2 rear speakers, the others are mono. I picked them up on ebay, on sale at Best Buy, etc...started with just 3 and kept getting them. Yes, a bit pricey but I tried doing this with several others and dammit this just works out of the box every time, no issues.  I tried it with its own network but when I put in a better wifi setup it works better just intermixed on my main network. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

sonos is great but the sound quality is inferior to a traditional system.  we use sonos a lot but also have a two zone system with paradigm speakers.  wifi and bluetooth are wonky.  I've got a standalone two speaker set up for one room when I want to really enjoy the sound.   I wish traditional stereo equipment set ups would be more reliable.  I'd love a 4-5 zone traditional system that works seamlessly.

Edited by troph

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Have you looked at the Yamaha MusicCast systems? Traditional receivers that can all talk to each other. I’ve been keeping my eyes peeled for a good deal on two of them because our new place has embedded speakers in three different rooms that are currently not hooked to anything.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Another Sonos rec.  We've had it for 3+ years now, keep adding on, and constantly wonder why the fuck we waited so long.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Man, you guys are making want to go out and buy some Sonos speakers.  A buddy of mine swears by them and he has been slowly adding just like some of the accounts here.  Fuck it, I'm jumping in!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 11/12/2019 at 3:06 PM, tbone_ said:

 

Does anyone make a receiver/amp that is WiFi connected (so it will do Pandora, Spotify, etc) AND support 5 independent zones? By independent I mean I just need independent volume controls on each zone, but they can all play the same source. Oh and it needs to be app controlled.

 

I have an Onkyo that does everything except the 5 zones. It only has 2 zones and so I have to run one of the zones through a splitter and adjust volumes and toggle each zone off and on manually.

 

Seems like such a thing would exist but I have had any luck finding it.

 

https://www.amazon.com/Dayton-Audio-MA1240a-Multi-Zone-Amplifier/dp/B003DKVZHQ

3- house zones

1- pool deck

1- garage

1- Mbr

I have one an older one that doesn't have the wireless support.  So I use any old device to provide rca input.  In my case, since these are just house speakers for passive listening, I use a Roku to stream Pandora/whatever and use a Miccus low latency bluetooth transmitter/receiver.   That way I can see whats playing on the TV and change music etc without walking down the hall to my media closet, and if I want I can also play my main stereo system and subs.   Having the subs on really makes the ceiling speakers sound so much better.

 

My only complaint about the amp is that the individual sound levels and selection for each zone is on the BACK of the amp.   So I have it mounted backwards.  Looks like ass, but you won't care unless your in the closet.

Edited by Loco

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 11/12/2019 at 10:26 PM, tbone_ said:


I’ve looked at that but wouldn’t it require an amp for each zone? Seems pricey.

only if you want to drive existing loudspeakers.  you can always get sonos units that are themselves speakers, and recoup the costs of your passive loudspeakers. 

 

i havent A/B'ed sonos against traditional stuff like my paradigm setup, but im also impressed with them after initial skepticism of a "tech" product in a traditional, analog space. 

the speakers themselves are pretty fucking heavy (esp that sub) implying good performance.  which is a crude way of evaluating products, but for speakers it means real, heavy, materials and componentry, which cant really be adequately substituted for in the audio world.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
only if you want to drive existing loudspeakers.  you can always get sonos units that are themselves speakers, and recoup the costs of your passive loudspeakers.    i havent A/B'ed sonos against traditional stuff like my paradigm setup, but im also impressed with them after initial skepticism of a "tech" product in a traditional, analog space. 

the speakers themselves are pretty fucking heavy (esp that sub) implying good performance.  which is a crude way of evaluating products, but for speakers it means real, heavy, materials and componentry, which cant really be adequately substituted for in the audio world.

 

 

Used as intended - Wifi and streaming - Sonos doesn’t match on sound quality to a mid to high end system and against a high end set up it’s not even close. I’ve got a whole house paradigm set up and a WiFi Yamaha receiver, it’s closer than you’d think but still no match, and I’ve got a Cambridge reciever, built in DAC and quad speakers and running Spotify through that and it’s so much better it makes Sonos sound like crap. The DAC helps a lot and no WiFi either so maybe Sonos in a true A/B test might stand up but I highly doubt it. I use Sonos though because it’s quick and easy, but if I want to really listen and do nothing but hear music with full focus, Sonos doesn’t do it for me. But in the space it occupies, Sonos is the best. It’s convenient, easy and when you’ve got 4-6 of them spread out and when you especially add the stereo feature (2 per room) and match them up, it becomes a solid system for background, ambient and even party mode.  

 

We have 4 and will add 2-4 more I’m sure. We are building a house too and I will wire it though. It’s just to easy to wire and the potential for traditional audio system which will sound so much better to catch up on ease of use is too great not to.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

https://www.monoprice.com/product?p_id=10761

There is a third party app built for this amp, you have to buy a 232/ethernet adapter (~$100), but then you have full control from the app or from the wall plates. 

Its overkill based on you only wanting a single source, but you'll have a hard time finding a single-source, multizone setup with wifi control.  They are almost always just analog systems with impedance control to keep the primary amp from blowing out below 4 ohms.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, troph said:

Used as intended - Wifi and streaming - Sonos doesn’t match on sound quality to a mid to high end system and against a high end set up it’s not even close. I’ve got a whole house paradigm set up and a WiFi Yamaha receiver, it’s closer than you’d think but still no match, and I’ve got a Cambridge reciever, built in DAC and quad speakers and running Spotify through that and it’s so much better it makes Sonos sound like crap. The DAC helps a lot and no WiFi either so maybe Sonos in a true A/B test might stand up but I highly doubt it. I use Sonos though because it’s quick and easy, but if I want to really listen and do nothing but hear music with full focus, Sonos doesn’t do it for me. But in the space it occupies, Sonos is the best. It’s convenient, easy and when you’ve got 4-6 of them spread out and when you especially add the stereo feature (2 per room) and match them up, it becomes a solid system for background, ambient and even party mode.  

 

We have 4 and will add 2-4 more I’m sure. We are building a house too and I will wire it though. It’s just to easy to wire and the potential for traditional audio system which will sound so much better to catch up on ease of use is too great not to.

 

Yeap, thats exactly the thing - it works perfectly in context. 

For "serious" listening (which for me is rare as hell), i retreat to the home office, and play FLAC --> headphone amp --> sennheiser hd650 or etymotic set.  Thats when I can close my eyes and listen.

With the wife around, im never listening loudly in the shared space.  Sonos plays compressed streaming audio as ambient noise for doing stuff around the house, and the occasional party playlist with people over.  And its way more than adequate for it.  Most of the time, its doing home theater duty.

The days of sitting in front of a couch, playing a record or dvd-audio loud enough to rattle the windows doesnt exist for me anymore

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

HEOS is the best of both worlds from Denon/Marantz.

Multi Zone receiver for Theater sound 9.1 ATMOS set up (towers, subs, surround etc).  Powered HEOS speakers for back yard (Heos 1) and bedrooms (HEOS 3).  The HEOS branded speakers are the same as the SONOS ones, just rebranded. 

The app works just like sonos.  All you need is wifi, no external amps.  Series 2 also supports FLAC audio from Tidal and other sources.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

VSSL uses Native Streaming to connect your speakers to the music apps that you already know and love. Native Streaming is already integrated into your phone through Airplay, Chromecast built-in, and Spotify Connect. By adding a VSSL to your system you simply play what you love to the room you want.”

Edited by Tonesky

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
VSSL uses Native Streaming to connect your speakers to the music apps that you already know and love. Native Streaming is already integrated into your phone through Airplay, Chromecast built-in, and Spotify Connect. By adding a VSSL to your system you simply play what you love to the room you want.”


Not sure if I trust a company that can’t spell Phoenix.

So I assume the idea there is that you homerun all your speakers back to that thing and then connect it to your wifi? Do you have to connect a source to every zone or just stream from your device?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think it’s just from your device. Website says you can only buy from a custom installer though. Wants contact info and “someone” will reach out.

Uh, no.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If you can find the now discontinued Chromecast Audio, they can be joined together in a group. So you can use any receiver and make it connectable for ~$35. Since this makes a lot of sense, of course Google kills it. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

6 Echo Dots or Echo "Inputs" (cheaper). Line out from each one to a cheap multi-zone receiver. Create different "zones" in your house by clumping the Echos together in the Alexa app. Everything is then controlled from the Spotify app and you can connect to different zones right from the Spotify app as well.

You can find Chromecast Audios on Ebay. I think they have a digital audio out which would be nice, but they aren't supported by Google anymore and I'm not sure you can clump them together to create zones like you can the Echo products.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I don't have the VSSL, but like what I have read about it.  We expect to finally break ground on our post-Harvey house in the spring, and I intend to pull wire to a central spot for use of the VSSL for distributed audio.  As I understand it, every zone operates independently (six different people, in six different rooms, can all stream what they want to the speakers in that room at the same time), and you can set up one "party" group to play the same stream in as many zones as you want simultaneously.  It also has a couple of inputs for things like a CD player, and bus outputs such that one of your zones could be your AVR speakers.  It is a bit pricey, but I am interested.  Also, I have read a few forum comments suggesting that one might be able to buy one direct out the back door.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


mpu


Football ... Basketball ... Baseball ... Other Sports ... Recruiting ... Gambling ... Movies & TV ... Music ... Hobbies ... Lulz ... Food & Travel ... Daily Texan ... Help ... For Sale ... Politics ... Board Discussion
×
×
  • Create New...