Sonos Unleashes Long-Awaited Patch, Silencing Soundbar Popping Woes After Years

Sonos Unleashes Long-Awaited Patch, Silencing Soundbar Popping Woes After Years
(Image: Sonos)

Sonos has finally released a patch for its soundbars after nearly three years of waiting. The second-generation Arc and Beam models had been sporadically producing unintended loud popping noises. The firmware update, labeled version 15.10, needs to be installed on the affected soundbars. Sonos intends to closely monitor corresponding support forums and promptly address any lingering issues if they persist despite the update.

In a support forum, Sonos points to a “rare issue” related to the interaction between Dolby Atmos audio processing via HDMI and the use of Dolby MAT technology. Streaming devices utilize Dolby MAT to overlay the audio track with system sounds, which is crucial for device voice control.

According to Sonos, the second-generation Soundbar Arc and Beam occasionally receive a “flawed audio segment from an external source” that needs to be filtered out by the soundbar. The manufacturer mentions that “certain home theater systems” played audible errors, leading to the extremely loud popping noises customers have been experiencing for years.

Sonos Leaves Questions Unanswered

Sonos does not specify which devices were affected by this issue. As per current findings, problems arise when the Sonos soundbars are used with either an Apple TV or Microsoft’s Xbox. Whether this problem occurs with devices from other manufacturers is currently unknown.

With the new firmware, the Dolby decoder in the Sonos soundbars aims to filter out these “audible errors.” Consequently, the loud popping noises should no longer occur. Sonos did not provide details on why it took several years to identify the issue.

Sonos Aims to Monitor Patch Success

Sonos assures that customer feedback regarding the patch will be closely monitored. If Sonos misjudges and the popping noises persist, the manufacturer pledges to release further updates. As of now, there are no reports from affected individuals confirming that the popping noises are guaranteed to be eliminated.

In announcing the update across at least three Sonos support forums, the manufacturer apologizes for the inconvenience caused. Some customers have replaced their affected Sonos soundbars multiple times without resolving the popping noise issue. Additionally, the company expresses gratitude to customers who aided in troubleshooting.

With the rollout of the current patch, it’s finally evident that even the Beam 2 will now have the issue corrected. In Sonos forums, the manufacturer provided conflicting information at the end of August 2023 and the beginning of September 2023 about whether the firmware at that time would address the popping noise problem.

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William Wylie
William Wylie, a tech writer with a penchant for future tech, shares his perspective on the ever-evolving world of tech, offering a glimpse into the next big breakthroughs.