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  #1  
Old Feb 19th, 2012, 05:23 AM
Bobholthaus Bobholthaus is offline
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Default Can I setup a Sonos system without Internet access?

A friend's farm, which we go to every 6 weeks or so, does not have a broadband Internet connection. Satellite Internet is the only option due to the rural location, but only going to the farm 6 or 7 times a year makes it cost prohibitive. Is it possible to setup Sonos using a wifi router that doesn't actually connect to the Internet, just playing music stored locally? I don't think this is possible, but I thought I'd ask anyway. Thanks.
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  #2  
Old Feb 19th, 2012, 05:34 AM
Kumar Kumar is offline
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You can set up a Sonos dock to auto play with a zone player such as the play5. Once you do that, dropping an iPod in the dock will start it playing through the play5. No bridge, router or internet access is required.

Initial set up will need internet access, but later, it will work as above.

I use one this way most nights in my bedroom.
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Old Feb 19th, 2012, 05:35 AM
ratty ratty is offline
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You can certainly use a router which has no WAN connection, but of course you'll have no internet radio etc.

The Sonos can be controlled from iPhone/Android so long as the router has WiFi.

The system should be set up and firmware updated before taking the system to the farm. This process will require an internet connection.
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  #4  
Old Feb 20th, 2012, 04:38 PM
Bobholthaus Bobholthaus is offline
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ratty- do you mind walking me through the setup? At my own home, I have a Bridge, a Connect, and a Connect:Amp setup. At the farm, I would like to have a Connect and at least one Play 5 setup. So, I can easily add both of these to my home Sonos network to get them updated. Then, once I unplug them, and plug in the Wireless Router at the farm, what do I need to do to get them all talking to one another? Since there is no wifi, how am I going to control them? I'm assuming that I need to have a computer plugged into the same router? Or, piggybacking onto Kumar's response, can I only control this with a dock? Please explain your answers, which I truly appreciate. Thanks!

ratty: can you please explain your answer a little further. At my home, I have a full Sonos setup which I can plug the Play 5 and Connect into to update them. But, once I get to the farm, do I plug the Connect into the Wifi Router (which will have no WAN but will be putting out a Wifi signal)? And will I be abole to control it all via my iPhone without it being hard plugged in? Do I have to have a computer plugged in anywhere? If the router is putting out a Wifi signal, will my iPhone see the router and any Sonos equipment plugged into it? Thanks!

Last edited by ratty; Feb 21st, 2012 at 01:56 AM. Reason: merged two posts which conflicted in some parts
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  #5  
Old Feb 21st, 2012, 02:11 AM
ratty ratty is offline
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In answer to your two posts (which were slightly contradictory):

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bobholthaus View Post
At my own home, I have a Bridge, a Connect, and a Connect:Amp setup. At the farm, I would like to have a Connect and at least one Play 5 setup. So, I can easily add both of these to my home Sonos network to get them updated.
Yes, do that.

Quote:
Then, once I unplug them, and plug in the Wireless Router at the farm, what do I need to do to get them all talking to one another? Since there is no wifi, how am I going to control them?
No WiFi? It's a wireless router so will put out a WiFi signal (unless you deliberately turn it off). If you have iOS or Android Sonos controllers you can use those.

Quote:
I'm assuming that I need to have a computer plugged into the same router?
If you wish you can do this too. You could also plug it into the Connect or Play:5.

Quote:
Or, piggybacking onto Kumar's response, can I only control this with a dock?
No. you can't control the Sonos system via the Dock other than the volume of the zone(s) to which you've set the Dock to "Autoplay" (assuming that option is configured). You can use the Sonos controller on a docked iDevice, but for that to work you would need WiFi.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bobholthaus' follow-up post
But, once I get to the farm, do I plug the Connect into the Wifi Router (which will have no WAN but will be putting out a Wifi signal)? And will I be abole to control it all via my iPhone without it being hard plugged in?
You said previously there was no WiFi! There clearly should be so, yes, you can use your iPhone. Wire the Connect (or Play:5) to the router.

Quote:
Do I have to have a computer plugged in anywhere?
As previously noted, this is optional if you also have a WiFi-based Sonos controller.

Quote:
If the router is putting out a Wifi signal, will my iPhone see the router and any Sonos equipment plugged into it?
Yes!
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  #6  
Old Feb 21st, 2012, 07:52 PM
shrocky shrocky is offline
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I have a question about something similar I am trying to do.

Every summer there are 14 couples that rent out an entire motel for the weekend in Palm Springs.
I always provide the music with speakers wired outside to the pool area. My amp is inside the air conditioned room as one year my powered speakers quit because it was too hot - 120 degrees.
All of my music is on hard drive and I have previously set up playlists based on a list people write on a clipboard.

This year I thought it would be convenient, and of course impressive, if I were to just pass around an android device and let people search and choose their own playlist like the jukebox of old. Of course I will have to worry
about keeping the android device out of the pool and drunken partygoers!

I have a ZP 90 and would like to wire this to the NAS drive with my songs on it. I will also have a laptop computer
with me that I can wire to this also.
My problem is the motel has WiFi throughout the premises but I doubt I will be able to connect directly to the
router.
Can the laptop (running Windows 7) be set up to act as the bridge to the motel WiFi? Then the three wired components
(ZP90, Laptop, NAS) can work together controlled by the Android controller wirelessly.
As an alternative I could use a WiFi bridge in place of the laptop.
Is this a possibility?
It may depend on whether the pool area and my individual room both use the same router. If they don't I may even
be able to bring the bridge out to the pool area and run ethernet back to my room for connection to the ZP90 and
NAS.
Any help would be greatly appreciated. There are many potential Sonos customers that I would love to impress.
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  #7  
Old Feb 21st, 2012, 08:06 PM
Kumar Kumar is offline
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Regarding the dock, yes, it has only a volume control. But it can be set to auto play with either a player or a Connect/Connect amp. It will then play music wirelessly from any docked idevice, without the need for a bridge, router, wifi or internet, indoors or outdoors, anywhere in the world.

One has to set up the music selection on the idevice - as a playlist or by selecting an album, drop the device into the dock, and the music is up and running. Simple and near to foolproof. I do this every night in my bedroom.

And anyone that has music stored on their idevice, can drop it into the dock, and it will play the music without any registering of the device, the dock doesn't care which device it is, as long as it is compatible with the dock. iPods, iPod touch and iPhones of the last two years are compatible for sure, but there are details of this on the Sonos site.

And of course, the dock will charge the device as well. All you need is mains power for the dock and the connect units or players.

I love my dock!

PS: the dock actually justifies the purchase of the iPod classic 160gb, imho. For people that are idevice users, at any rate. I have some 500 CDs on mine, lossless rips for high quality. It will probably hold 2000 CDs if ripped in lossy codecs. For those challenged with networking understanding, as I am, this is a very good way to use Sonos. Also, the dock extracts digital signals from the idevices, bypassing the little DACs in them. Yields very high quality sound that makes a difference when using Connect units. Doesn't do much for the play units, they don't have the resolution to pick up the difference anyway.

Last edited by Kumar; Feb 21st, 2012 at 08:47 PM.
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  #8  
Old Feb 22nd, 2012, 12:41 AM
ratty ratty is offline
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shrocky,

If you attempt to connect your Sonos system to the motel's network and rely on their WiFi for the Android controller you'll be at the mercy of their network policies. These might, for example, stop broadcast traffic from the WLAN being sent to the wired LAN. Without it the Sonos controller will fail to find the player(s) and you will look distinctly embarrassed.

If all your music is stored locally you wouldn't require an internet connection for the Sonos, so you could simply bring along your own wireless router to provide a private, island network as discussed earlier in the thread. The Android controller would connect to this and control the wired Sonos/NAS/computer. The private router would deal with IP addresses for your kit as well, so no need to mess around with Auto-IPs.

The benefit of being self-contained is that you can set up and test your system before heading off to the motel.
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  #9  
Old Feb 22nd, 2012, 12:51 AM
buzz buzz is offline
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shrocky,

Using a computer as a bridge from the house WiFi to your temporary network might work, but it can also be very quirky.

I think that the most straight forward arrangement for you would be to bring a wireless router and make your own isolated network by wiring the ZP90, NAS, and your computer to the router. "Guest" Androids, iPhones, and computers could control the SONOS system by connecting through your router. Yes, you could still use your computer as a bridge to the house WiFi, but don't assume in advance that this bridge will be problem free.

Note that you can use multiple SONOS DOCK's and an iDevice in a DOCK can be operated by any controller. "Command and control" issues between the parties will need to be worked out on site.

While I have no experience with any, there are claims of "waterproof" cases for iDevices and Androids.

Finally, be sure to test your temporary network scheme well before the actual event.
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  #10  
Old Feb 22nd, 2012, 07:33 AM
shrocky shrocky is offline
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ratty and buzz,
Great information. I suspected using a bridge would be tricky. It sounds like using my own WiFi router is the safest way to go. The only downside to that is, as was stated earlier in the thread, I won't be able to control Pandora streaming or local radio broadcasts. I can however use the laptop on the hotel WiFi and the ZP90 line in from the PC audio out to supply this. Since I am bringing over 1300 CD's worth of music we would only use it if we tired of cuing up music.

I will be sure to test this closed system out before leaving home to ensure it is working properly.
There is also the possibility that all the rooms are wired and have access points for wireless. If this is the case I could plug directly into the wired ethernet ahead of the access point and use this in the conventional way. This is a privately run motel and I am going to call the guy that runs the front desk to see if he has info on this. I doubt he can tell me specifics on the network permissions but he can certainly look to see if there is wired access in my room. I will still bring my own WiFi router for backup purposes. The show must go on.

As to the "command and control" issue of the guests competing for the cue, I will only have the one Android controller that will have the Sonos app running on it. They can pass it around and fight for it, although we are a fairly civilized crowd that likes to party to most any music - provided the refreshments continue to flow.
Some of these people are very tech savvy and they can quickly figure out how to download the Sonos app for their smartphones. They would still need access to the ZP90 (which I can lock in my room) to initiate the control.

I don't use ipods or itunes as I need my music in mp3 or wav for my DJ equipment. I also like the ability of the SanDisk players to use microSD cards for limitless storage possibilities, something Apple does not provide. I bring a 1Tb drive with all wav files to this event for maximum sound quality.

I just looked into it and for $120 this is a no-brainer: I am getting a dock. Apple, you won this round. I want to accomodate as many friends as possible and a lot of the guests do have ipods or iphones with music stored on them. In the rare event that I don't have a song they want to hear that is stored on their device I will provide them with that interface. I could also use it at home for guests there as well. This is a superior way than just plugging the headphone out to the line in as you have that wireless control. The only downside is that then I may be forced to suffer through someone else's idea of great music!
I am assuming this dock can index any new ipod plugged into it in this remote local setup without needing to be connected to the internet? Couldn't you also just connect the ipod or iphone to the laptop through USB and use it as a mass storage device?
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