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Q/about the new Autonomic Control's MMS.5A and .5AV (edit Sept26)


wappinghigh

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1/ How many independent zones can this run? Looking at the back of the device and the specs, it's got 4 analog audio out, and a 5.1 digital coax and 7.1 digital USB..

So does this mean you can run 6 different rooms of audio off this device? Kind of like the equivalent of 6 independant Sonos zones?..

The spec's say "Distribute up to four indpendent streams of audio to as many zones as your multi-room system supports".. So does this mean 4 independent audio zones...with the others grouped together...?

2/ I assume the 24/192 is available at all these audio "zones"?

3/ AC has dealers in the UK, but the specs say 120V.. Is it available in 240V... I mean why wouldn't such a device have Universal power?...

4/ What video formats are supported off the HDMI... Apple m4v DRM??? MKV??? .iso?...

5/ Does the EV driver work with this new model?

6/Could you pair this with an MMS-2 to get 6 independent audio zones?..

Thanks!!

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Bump^

I'm genuinely asking about this as a Sonos replacement.

I'm totally over Sonos playing havoc with my network. Broadcast storms. Dropping it's shares etc..

I'd drop a few zones, sure, but then again I'd get reliability, 24/192 hi Rez, and a superb video media player and library....

If it's going to cost 3-4K to upgrade my network, why not just switch audio platforms?...

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My understanding is that you can run 5 zones, the 4 analog and either the digital or the usb.

I believe the hdmi is just for the GUI, they talked about adding video support but I haven't seen anything that they are doing anything other then the GUI at this point.

I really would like to see how this integrates with C4 but Autonomic doesn't have any video of the integration even. I'm guessing EV does but haven't heard from them.

I'm very interested in the MMS as well but at this moment I've not a had a single issue with my 4 zp-90's, they have operated without issue for over a year

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Thanks for the reply..

An EV driver is up on their website for the older MMS.5

I'm assuming it would work, but like you I've never seem this driver in action..

I'd need to import one of these directly as there are no dealers here for me to demo...

It's the simplicity and 24/192 that has me interested in this...

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cde. The problem with Sonos is not so much at the 4 zone level...but when you start ballooning out to 8-12 maybe more zones..

Now whilst of course Sonos will deny *any* of this, living with Sonos in the real world as I have for more than 5 years now, getting multiple zones to work 100% of the time starts to become more of a network engineering task and less of a DIY plug and play...

That's because of Sonos and how it deals with STP (Spanning Tree protocol)..

Sure. If all you did was run Sonos on your network, and all wireless, you'd be fine..

But start to add multiple other IP devices and a network tree, and that's when things start getting a little "complicated"...

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^ Yeh, the problem integrating a large zone Sonos system has always been two fold. Hardwiring. And wireless. And how they interact.

If you want to go all hardwired, there is no way to physically "hardwire" the zones together. Sonos say's you are "hardwiring" if you daisy chain zone players together with ethernet cable. But those of us who have done this know this is not true hardwire. It's just hardwire networking... Each individual ZP still gets it's own individual IP address...And this then sets up Sonos for STP problems. And once you have done this, you can't turn off the wireless in the ZP's to stop them trying to reconnect into the network wirelessly. A perfect set up for network loops and broadcast storms..

Sonos themselves and several other people I have talked to on this hardwiring matter actually advice going all wireless! (except the primary ZP).

So your right Cody, if you then go all wireless to avoid these issues of hardwire networking, you then have all the problems of wireless. Interference, range etc etc

Sonos doesn't actually have a solution to these problems. Because of the fundamental way the platform is designed. It is 100% dependant on networking.... and thats *Every* Zone player.

So what "Sonos" like alternatives are out there?

That is the same sort of interface and GUI experience and a Control4 driver. WITHOUT the total network and wireless dependancy?

Now the obvious answer is Control4 audio! But this is let down by audio quality, and the limited no. of file formats handled.

There is Linn. But this system is let down also. Being 100% network dependant. Also it's streaming control is dlna. And it gets very expensive once you go past a couple of zones...

I've read about these guys (Ex Linn engineers) : Simple Audio. See http://www.whathifi.com/review/roomplayer-1 But I have no idea if the networking of this product suffers from the same issues as Sonos...

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Try attempting to fix a wireless sonos system installed in a high-rise where you can see 56 other wifi networks in the 2.4ghz spectrum. :-/

Cody - Try *developing* the driver in that environment :) Also, only 56? I think I can physically *see* 56 routers from my window, let alone find on the WiFi analyzer :)

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If you want to go all hardwired, there is no way to physically "hardwire" the zones together. Sonos say's you are "hardwiring" if you daisy chain zone players together with ethernet cable. But those of us who have done this know this is not true hardwire. It's just hardwire networking... Each individual ZP still gets it's own individual IP address...And this then sets up Sonos for STP problems. And once you have done this, you can't turn off the wireless in the ZP's to stop them trying to reconnect into the network wirelessly. A perfect set up for network loops and broadcast storms..

There are some discussions on the Sonos Forum that handle keeping the wireless from connecting into the network in conjunction with the STP. I'm sure you've read them all but just incase as they seemed rather complete and tested solutions.

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Will, do you have any video of how the MMS-5 integrates with C4?

It integrates just fine. If you want to try it out, Autonomic have a public facing MMS-5 (or they used to) that you can use with our driver. You'd need to be a dealer to have ComposerPro and a login to our website though.

It obviously has the same restriction as all other iPod proxy based drivers that you can't search because there's no way to get an onscreen keyboard, but it's a very capable piece of hardware. I still prefer the Sonos for their depth of music service and granularity of options with respect to multiroom (cf the Play3/5/Sub etc), but the MMS-5 is a great piece of kit.

Sonos and STP is a PITA. I've just resolved my last outstanding issue with it though, had to turn on STP on the switch AND on the ports that Sonos was connected to. Each Sonos still runs the wireless for connecting to Docks, old handheld controllers and the ability to connect Android devices to the SonosNet mesh, but all Sonos traffic is sent wired between Zoneplayers if it can be.

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Hey Will. I'm so glad someone like yourself-who really knows what they are doing .... can still find this Sonos STP stuff difficult! I thought you had to turn STP *off* to get Sonos hardwired properly.

So what's the best way in your opinion with a managed switch? Go all wireless? Or fixed individual ports with STP on?

It would be really helpful if you could write up a 'best practice' or point me to links on the Sonos forum on this.

Or if anybody could do the same. Because as you say, it's definitely not straight forward. :).

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Obviously the wired configuration will be the better choice for stability and robustness, however if that's not possible and you have the environment to have a strong and stable wireless network then by all means go that route. If you hardwire don't daisychain more than 5 sonos players.

You'd still set-up your switch the same turning on STP on the switch and on all the ports. I've read that it makes more sense to enable all ports then just individual ports. Then just make sure that your root bridge is either the switch or the hardwired sonos and if its not then make it the root (http://forums.sonos.com/showpost.php?p=120001&postcount=4).

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Ok. Thanks everyone. I really appreciate the help.

So basically it comes down to how much more cash I throw at my network (to keep Sonos), or do I accept it will never be perfect and pull the plug on Sonos.

Taking out Sonos will sure ease the load, and may well stop all the storms and carry on.

I'm planning a big network upgrade. But the cost of that that will buy me a darn good alternative music system, And one that is less network dependant..Or some other piece of C4 gear..

For those who are following this, let me assure you, as Sonos expands, along with your network, Sonos very quickly becomes much more network engineering hands on and way less DIY..

In fact as Will say's it can really become a bit of a PITA.

Trust me, I've lived and breathed this thing for 5 years.. :rolleyes:

Difficult decision as I luv the whole Sonos concept. And the EV driver is brilliant.

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Got into my Cisco SG200/50 and took a look. I've finally understood what's going on...I know also how to get into the Sonos "table" to check things out..

I just have to get thru a 14 yr old girls birthday party first (don't want to have to completely re-config my network and have it all fall apart prior to that) :cool:

Give me a couple of weeks and I'll report back. I *really* appreciate the help. :):)

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Obviously the wired configuration will be the better choice for stability and robustness, however if that's not possible and you have the environment to have a strong and stable wireless network then by all means go that route. If you hardwire don't daisychain more than 5 sonos players.

You'd still set-up your switch the same turning on STP on the switch and on all the ports. I've read that it makes more sense to enable all ports then just individual ports. Then just make sure that your root bridge is either the switch or the hardwired sonos and if its not then make it the root (http://forums.sonos.com/showpost.php?p=120001&postcount=4).

QFT.

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WAP, have you considered running a MAC or MACmini, iTunes with Amarra or Amarra Symphony? If your not familiar, though I assume you are, its a plug-in for iTunes that adds some HUGE features and improvements including FLAC support. Amarra sounds like the perfect for you seeing you have so much time and effort into getting everything into itunes.

• Adds Sonic Studio Engine to iTunes

• Sample rate support (max resolution) - 384 kHz

• Automatic sample rate switching

• Plays mp3, mp4, .wav, aiff

• FLAC to AIFF conversion

• FLAC file playback

• CACHE play

• Independent play list creation

• Can work independently from iTunes

• Sonic Mastering dither algorithms

• Sonic EQ Window

• Extra Sonic Mastering EQ

• Sonic Meters

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Got into my Cisco SG200/50 and took a look. I've finally understood what's going on...I know also how to get into the Sonos "table" to check things out..

I just have to get thru a 14 yr old girls birthday party first (don't want to have to completely re-config my network and have it all fall apart prior to that) :cool:

Give me a couple of weeks and I'll report back. I *really* appreciate the help. :):)

Just Turn on STP enable all ports and your done, no other config needed. Dont wait, your network must be running slower than a snail at the moment with all the loops happening

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