Alexa-Hue Bridge and Sonos

Posted on
Mon Feb 27, 2017 3:02 am
thekunzies offline
Posts: 4
Joined: Feb 26, 2017

Alexa-Hue Bridge and Sonos

I thought I would share my Alexa progress with the forum, great plugin (thx Jay Martin).

Alexa integration with the HueBridge plugin exposes any type of device to Alexa, which is good, I can ask Alexa to switch on the living room Sonos: “Alexa, switch on the living room Sonos”, or control my lighting: “Alexa switch on the living room lights”. My Sonos units are generally set to my favourite radio station, so when I walk into a room, the music start playing automatically in conjunction with a motion sensor and a timer Depending on a few variables, you do not want the Sonos units to play music at full blast when you get home late at night when the wife is sleeping, I made that mistake once….. Our entire house has in-ceiling speakers with Sonos Connect AMP5 units (one per room) in my server room. Our house was a new build, so I could do all the required wiring for networking and the in-ceiling speakers.

Having a Spotify premium account, the lack of a decent sounding speaker on the Amazon Echo Dot, the ambition was to ask Alexa to play any song on my Sonos started all of this.

I thought it would be great to combine Alexa with my Sonos units, as the Echo Dot have a line-out for a speaker and the Sonos units support line-in (automatic line-in detection) as well. The only problem is that my Echo Dot was in my living room, and my Sonos Connect AMP was in my sever room in the opposite side of the house, which ruled out Bluetooth. I was not going to spend more money on yet another speaker or run cables through my house either….   {insert Google research here}

It was important for me not to end up with a solution where only Alexa can output to the speakers: if the Sonos units is currently on playing my favourite radio station and I interact with Alexa, the automatic line in detection of the Sonos units will which over to “Alexa input”, but afterwards, the Sonos units must go back to the previous known state (favourite radio station), when either a motion sensor gets triggered, or when I use either the Sonos app, Indigo app or Apple HomeKit (Siri), simple…

The simple solution would have been to keep Alexa permanently connected to the Sonos, but what fun will that be? (And Indigo welcomes me home with a friendly warm voice playing over the Sonos units)

I ended up with the following hardware and software to make this work:
• Echo Dot
• Sonos AMP5
• Auidioengine w3 wireless
• A few triggers and scripts in Indigo

There is still some issues to resolve:
• The latency of the Audioengine W3 is a few milliseconds, but it is enough to miss the first part of an Alexa sentence, this is more due to the automatic line in detection and switching on the Sonos units
• Native Sonos Alexa integration is coming somewhere this year, and who knows when a Apple Siri equivalent will arrive?
• Once Alexa is finished speaking or I am finished listening to Spotify, I must ask Alexa again to switch on the Sonos units (going through Indigo, a trigger sets the favourite radio station and line-in options) to resume normal playing radio.

All in all, I am very happy thus far with my progress, and would love to hear if anybody else has done something similar?

I work in IT, so I must add the obligatory picture…. :-)
Alexa Sonbos.png
Alexa Sonbos.png (203.46 KiB) Viewed 548 times

Posted on
Mon Feb 27, 2017 11:17 am
jay (support) offline
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Posts: 16264
Joined: Mar 19, 2008
Location: Austin, Texas

Re: Alexa-Hue Bridge and Sonos

Nice, thanks. Forum user @autolog also deserves a ton of credit - he's basically taken over the plugin and has done a great job with it.

Jay (Indigo Support)
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