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Big Aura's picture
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Sonos/XFM Internet Radio

Hello all

I've just installed a Sonos system, and am very happy except with some radio services. My missus likes listening to Danny Wallace on XFM in the mornings, and the Sonos was permitted on the basis that it can deliver normal radio. So far, all works well, except XFM (London).

Every now and then the sound drops out for a second or so, and it can happen 2-3 times in 5 minutes. Exceptionally annoying and has caused a few raised eyebrows (which imply "did you keep the receipt for that bl**dy Sonos").

It doesn't happen on normal music files (so that implies the Sonos is sending okay) and it didn't happen after 10 minutes continuous BBC2 (so that implies that internet radio in general is okay and download bandwidth isn't at fault). That leads me to XFM - could it be poor uploads at their end? Surely not? A quick google hasn't revealed anyone else having a similar issue.

Anyone have suggestions (can I use a different service to obtain the signal? etc.)

thanks

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RE: Sonos/XFM Internet Radio

edit: oh, and if anyone with a Sonos could check out XFM (London) - not XFM (Manchester), to see if it's just me, I'd be very grateful!

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RE: Sonos/XFM Internet Radio

Big Aura,

Probably not what you want to hear but I have been listening to XFM London as requested and no problems so far.

I know there are some issues with software version 3.7 when using linked zones or stereo pairs, but I think this affects all sources not just radio.

Pop over to the Sonos forum and you will see the issue there.

If XFM starts to drop out I will let you know.

Dave.

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RE: Sonos/XFM Internet Radio

Fisherman1 wrote:

Big Aura,

Probably not what you want to hear but I have been listening to XFM London as requested and no problems so far.

I know there are some issues with software version 3.7 when using linked zones or stereo pairs, but I think this affects all sources not just radio.

I think there's been a further update (3.7.1a I think) released to address that.

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RE: Sonos/XFM Internet Radio

thanks Dave and The_Lhc.  I've updated to 3.7, but sadly the problem persists (it dropped out within seconds of rebooting after the upgrade!).  Still no issue with BBC2 (other than it's Chris Evans).   I've searched on the Sonos forum, and someone had a problem wih the bitrates on XFM just on Sonos, but that was in 2007.  They have a sticky thread with a procedure for reporting any issues with particular stations, so I'll try that tonight (it involves accessing internet radio, which I cannot do from work).

 

thanks

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RE: Sonos/XFM Internet Radio

Big Aura wrote:

thanks Dave and The_Lhc.  I've updated to 3.7, but sadly the problem persists (it dropped out within seconds of rebooting after the upgrade!).

Err, yeah, the update wasn't to fix radio problems particularly, more a grouping/pairing problem. The latest update is only for certain devices as well, it's not an across the board update.

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RE: Sonos/XFM Internet Radio

I've recently installed a Sonos system too and was listening to XFM at the weekend, no problems to report. I do get the occasional dropout when listening to stations generally on internet radio, but it's not that often and probably just a bandwidth issue on my network.

Editor-in-Chief of What Hi-Fi? Sound and Vision and whathifi.com

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RE: Sonos/XFM Internet Radio

The_Lhc wrote:

Err, yeah, the update wasn't to fix radio problems particularly, more a grouping/pairing problem.

I know, but there was a slim chance it could have improved it generally.

 

thanks Andy - bandwidth would be the obvious culprit, if it affected more than one station.  Hmmm....

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RE: Sonos/XFM Internet Radio

Sorry to say, that I use my Sonos every morning for listening to Internet Radio for hours, with no drop outs. Listening to Radio 5 this morning and all is well. I tried XFM London for 20 minutes and had no drop outs.

May I suggest that you search for Radio Paradise as it is a high quality stream, have a listen for drop outs on this. Then you can check and compare the bit rates for the two stations.

Yes the latest Sonos update was to address drop outs when grouping units together, but this happened with music being served as well as anything else. So this is not your drop out problem.

Is anyone else using your network at the same time. It shouldn't make a difference but you never know. If so then the old method of turning everything on the network off, use Sonos, if no problem turn next thing on, etc etc. It may give you a clue.

One other thing, that I had to do because I had interference from other householdsetc, was to change the wireless channel to 6 (from the original one), I was getting interference/drop outs on just one ZP90 and nothing else. You can do this by going into settings, then choose advanced, then choose wireless channel to change. It may be that you are getting the same kind of issue.

Keep us posted, and please post your solution, if not here then the Sonos Forums. We all need help sometimes.

All the best.

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RE: Sonos/XFM Internet Radio

thanks -  very helpful.   There's nothing else on the network, but will compare to that station, and play around with the Sonos channels tonight.

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RE: Sonos/XFM Internet Radio

update - I switched to Channel 11, and it seemed to work fine (but I only listened for about 5 minutes this morning).  Smile

(although I cannot understand why a channel change would help with just one radio station...!)

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RE: Sonos/XFM Internet Radio

seems it was a false dawn  -  still cutting out.  I tried channel 1 too (not sure why I only have 1, 6 and 11).

Back to the drawing board.  I will go via the Sonos "report a problem" page, and let you know where it ends up.

 

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RE: Sonos/XFM Internet Radio

Big Aura wrote:
seems it was a false dawn  -  still cutting out.  I tried channel 1 too (not sure why I only have 1, 6 and 11).

That's the wi-fi standard, each channel overlaps the nearest two channels on both sides, so keeping to 1, 6 and 11 is the only way you can guarantee full separation.

Anonymous
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RE: Sonos/XFM Internet Radio

I did an interesting search on XFM radio cutting out whilst driving.  No other radio station in my Nissan Qashqai cuts out but XFM.

I have a bog standard factory fitted radio and work within the M25 near (South West).  The cut-outs happen for up to 3 seconds and sometimes 3-4 times in a 5 minute period.  

I'm still a little stumped to the cause. Doesn't happen in our other car - so I'm thinking its the head unit. But only this station so is it the way XFM transmit?  So if anyone can help, please do!  My car radio is analogue not digital by the way. 

Thanks Kevin

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RE: Sonos/XFM Internet Radio

Hi Big Aura

It may make you feel better to know that I DO have the same issues with streaming XFM over Sonos...and have done for some time.  Often drops out completely for extended periods of time.  Again, I have no issues with any other music sources over Sonos including other radio stations and music services.  All software fully up to date.

What's also interesting is that I've just brought a Cambridge Audio Minx Air 200 for our holiday home and have exactly the same issue with streaming XFM over that!  Just stopped completely now and has not restarted for 15 mins or so.  Again, no problems with other stations or sources.

Not sure if this is of any help, but at least you know this is not unique to you.  Do let me know if you find the root of the problem.

Cheers, Phil.

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RE: Sonos/XFM Internet Radio

Hi Big Aura

It may make you feel better to know that I DO have the same issues with streaming XFM over Sonos...and have done for some time.  Often drops out completely for extended periods of time.  Again, I have no issues with any other music sources over Sonos including other radio stations and music services.  All software fully up to date.

What's also interesting is that I've just brought a Cambridge Audio Minx Air 200 for our holiday home and have exactly the same issue with streaming XFM over that!  Just stopped completely now and has not restarted for 15 mins or so.  Again, no problems with other stations or sources.

Not sure if this is of any help, but at least you know this is not unique to you.  Do let me know if you find the root of the problem.

Cheers, Phil.

 

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