Using AirPlay with Sonos Print

  • Using AirPlay with Sonos
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Using AirPlay with Sonos

To use AirPlay with Sonos, you need to connect an AirPort Express to a line-in port on a PLAY:5 (gen1 or gen2), CONNECT or CONNECT AMP. You then need to configure the AirPort Express and Sonos.

What you need to get started: 

  • An AirPort Express
  • A Sonos product with line-in
  • An audio cable

Sonos PLAY:5 (gen1 and gen2): use the 1/8 inch (3.5mm) mini-stereo to 1/8 inch (3.5mm) mini-stereo cable.

Sonos CONNECT or CONNECT:AMP: use an 1/8 inch (3.5mm) mini-stereo to RCA audio cable. (Included with CONNECT)

How to set up AirPort Express

    1. Plug the AirPort Express into a power socket.
  1. Connect the audio cable between the AirPort Express and the line-in on a Sonos PLAY:5 (gen1 and gen2), CONNECT, or CONNECT:AMP.

If you are setting up a new AirPort Express, follow the instructions below under Configuring the AirPort Express. If you previously set up the AirPort Express on your network, go to the section Configuring Sonos.

Configuring the AirPort Express:

    1. Launch the AirPort Utility on a Mac or Windows computer.

Note: To set up the AirPort Express using an iOS device, tap the name of your AirPort under SET UP NEW AIRPORT BASE STATION found in Settings -> Wi-Fi.
    1. Select Other Wi-Fi Devices (1) on the top left of AirPort Utility and click the name of your AirPort Express to launch the setup. 
    2. AirPort Utility will attempt to determine the best configuration for your network. Click Other Options.
    3. Select Add to an existing network and choose your Wi-Fi network from the dropdown list. Click Next.


    1. Type in a name for the AirPort Express under Base Station Name and click Next. This will be the name you choose when selecting an AirPlay output device.


  1. Enter the Wi-Fi network password when prompted to complete the setup.
  2. Once setup is complete, AirPort Utility will confirm your AirPort Express is wirelessly extending your existing network. Click Done to exit.

Configuring Sonos:

    1. Select Settings -> Room Settings from any Sonos controller and choose the room the AirPort Express is connected to from the dropdown.
      • Line-In Source Name: select AirPlay Device
      • Line-In Source Level: select Level 4 (AirPlay)
      • Autoplay Room: select the room that will automatically start playback when you begin streaming through AirPlay. Select None if you wish to start playback manually using a Sonos controller.


    1. From the Music menu, select Line-In and choose the room the AirPort Express is connected to to begin playback.
    2. Swipe up from the bottom of your screen on your iOS device to access Control Center.
    3. Tap AirPlay and select the AirPort Express that is attached to your Sonos product.


  1. Stream your favorite tunes from any AirPlay-capable device to your Sonos system!


Where can I find more information on how to set up the AirPort Express? 
Apple has excellent resources available online to help set up the Airport Express. 

Can AirPlay be used to send audio to multiple rooms? 
Yes. Check the Include Grouped Rooms menu option and group additional rooms to the Autoplay room. 

Can I use more than one AirPlay stream at a time to send different music to different rooms? 
No, AirPlay only allows a single audio stream to be played per AirPort Express. If you want to send different audio to different rooms at the same time, AirPlay is not recommended. Use your Sonos controller to play music from your library or music services to multiple grouped rooms simultaneously. 

Can I play music from iTunes and over AirPlay at the same time? Will the music be synchronized? 
While AirPlay does allow iTunes to play through a computer's speakers and also an AirPlay source, the sound won't be synchronized between Sonos and your computer and we don't recommend this. 

Can I use AirPlay to send an audio from a video source over Sonos? 
While AirPlay does allow this, there will be a noticeable delay in the audio and video when sent over Sonos. If synchronization is required, this use is not recommended. To reduce this delay, go to the Sonos Preferences on your Sonos controller, select Advanced and set the compression to Uncompressed. This will reduce the delay, but will limit the number of rooms you can stream the audio to, due to the high bandwidth nature of uncompressed audio. 

I'm experiencing audio playback failures when using a wireless AirPlay device, such as an iPhone, iPad, or Wi-Fi connected Mac. 
AirPlay audio failures can occur because of the AirPlay device's connection to your home Wi-Fi network. If you experience problems using AirPlay over Wi-Fi, try using a wired music source, such as the iTunes library of a Mac connected to your network via Ethernet. 

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