On my Sonos wishlist: pause instead of mute

by Volker Weber


These are the controls on a Sonos S5. Every Sonos player has the same ones. Mute, volume up and down. If you press mute, the music continues to play, but you can no longer hear it. What I wish for is the ability to re-program this button as pause.

I have a Sonos S5 in my bathroom. It would be nice if I were able to set the player to a certain radio station and then wake it up with a press of a button. There are complicated ways around this limitation, for instance setting a silent alarm to play this radio station and then crank up the volume on demand. But I'd rather set the whole behavior to pause instead of mute. The CR200 has a pause all option for a reason.

Sonos, just give me an option: pause instead of mute. It can look the same, it just has to stop the music instead of setting the volume to zero.


100% ACK - it annoys me as well that for a phone call or so I have to first use the controller/iphone to pause and cannot just use this button. Actuelly mute on this button does not make any sense for my usage pattern.

One question for you: is it your experience as well that "shuffle" from an imported iTunes playlist is not really shuffle? When I let it play shuffle and switch manually to a certain song as a starting point (because I want to start my day with that song ;-)) the shuffled song sequence after that song seems always the same to me - and there are a few hundred songs in the playlist.

Martin Hiegl, 2010-03-07

Pause would be one option. I would welcome this very much. An alternative or additionial option would be an "autoplay feature". That way I could end my day with a news station or music and start the day, as usual, with my favorite radio station. (Here a link to an ongoing discussion at Sonos: http://forums.sonos.com/showthread.php?p=98270&posted=1#post98270)

Felix Binsack, 2010-03-07

if the list seems the same (or is it the music that sounds the same?), would you then not actually benefit from having a mute button instead of a pause button, so that, after the phone call, you finally get to hear those other songs :-?

Frans Swarte, 2010-03-07

My setup is nearly the same as Volkers. I'm also using an S5 in the bathroom and I would love to wake it up by hitting a button.

Thomas Lang, 2010-03-07

Felix, no I don't listen to Techno ;-)

Martin Hiegl, 2010-03-07

Frans, if you mute a player you may find out later that you forgot to turn it off. It continues to stream music or it keeps the drives in your NAS awake.

Felix, what you are describing sounds interesting but it is too complicated. Mute is an on/off switch with a LED indicator. I suggest to keep it that way and just replace one "silencer" with a different one.

I would like to keep it as simple as possible. Press once to pause, press again to continue. Do not switch on the LED in this mode. One could even exchange the long press for "mute all" with "pause all". That way you could use any player to stop the music all over the house when you leave instead of fetching the remote.

Volker Weber, 2010-03-07

Felix, the "autoplay" feature is exactly what I'd love to see, too. In other words Sonos should allow for programming the mute button with a custom command as well as defining a 'post powered on' event. The absence of a customizable button on the S5 prevented me from buying one so far. The Logitech Squeezebox radio has six presents which you can program freely. Using it in a kitchen or bathroom environment is much more straightforward than fumbling with your iPhone/iPod touch/Sonos remote to get your favorite radio station going.
Alternatively/additionally Sonos could make it easier to quickly access your favorite radio stations via remote. That way I wouldn't have to navigate several menu layers down to finally play a radio station.

Markus Dierker, 2010-03-07

Regarding the original proposal: Agreed.

Something else though. You guys put a S5 into the bath room? That's the one with the tub in it, right?
The S5 is so expensive that I am fearful about putting it there. I regularly use the tub for 3 hours in a row as it's also my favorite reading place. The humidity in the room goes up to 90%.
Do you have experiences with that? Will it kill an S5 over time?

Mariano Kamp, 2010-03-07

And how should it work for a member of linked zones? Pause only for standalone zones?

Henrik Müller, 2010-03-07

Mariano, I am more worried about your skin than your S5.

Henrik, two solutions: (1) make is a household setting so all player behave the same or (2) a zoneplayer setting. That would mean it depends on which player you press the button. It would then execute the designated command.

Volker Weber, 2010-03-08

As some others, I also placed my S5 in our bathroom - a perfect device as it has enough power to be heard even when showering ... .
I do not worry about humidity at all as long as Sonos is not using paper membranes for the speakers. And even then, it is likely that the glue used to stabilize the paper cell membrane is water resistant and keeps the speakers in form. Even 90% humidity should not harm them whatsover, in my bathroom the heating is also up and most of the moisture disappears in the wooden ceiling anyway (my bathroom is upstairs under the roof / E+D house).

Axel Koerv, 2010-03-08

I have to agree - I would love to see a pause button to be configured on the Sonos devices. I have the mentioned issue with our S5 in the bathroom - I need a remote or my iphone to start the radio station :-(

Thomas Koester, 2010-03-08

Volker, I copy-pasted this request into the official Sonos support forums into the feature request area ("Sound Ideas") as it seemed not yet to be there. I assume you are not reading/writing there and I also assume it makes sense to use every possible channel to give more pressure on this request.
To see the thread, follow this link: http://forums.sonos.com/showthread.php?p=98390#post98390

Axel Koerv, 2010-03-08

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