AirPlay 2


'AirPlay 2' Articles

AirPlay 2 and Dolby Atmos Help Apple Make Inroads as a Hub of Your Home Entertainment Ecosystem

With the release of AirPlay 2 earlier this year and the follow-up addition of Dolby Atmos support for Apple TV with tvOS 12, there have been significant improvements in the home entertainment experience for Apple users. While AirPlay 2 support initially launched for HomePod with other speaker and receiver brands to come, the rollout has taken a bit of a time, and in fact there are still only a few brands that support the standard. Sound United's Denon and Marantz brands were the first standalone receivers to gain AirPlay 2 support back in August, and I've had a chance to test out the setup using a Denon AVR-X3500H receiver. Denon AVR-X3500H For those unfamiliar with component home theater systems, the AV receiver acts as the center of your entire system, managing both audio and video to connect all of your various content sources to outputs like your television and speakers. They've become increasingly packed with technology over time depending on how much you're willing to spend, offering support for such features as decoding various surround sound formats, driving an ever larger number of speakers, accepting direct wireless audio streaming via Bluetooth or AirPlay, connecting to Internet services via Wi-Fi or Ethernet, and more. I've paired the Denon receiver with Focal's Sib Evo 5.1.2 system that includes Dolby Atmos support, giving me the opportunity to check out both of the recent technological additions to the Apple ecosystem for a quick overview. Focal Sib Evo 5.1.2 speaker system with Cub Evo subwoofer The

Libratone ZIPP and ZIPP MINI Gain AirPlay 2 Support via Firmware Update

Libratone today announced that AirPlay 2 is available for its ZIPP and ZIPP MINI speakers through a firmware update that can be downloaded from the Libratone app. Libratone first announced support for AirPlay 2 back in May when Apple released AirPlay 2 support in the iOS 11.4 update, but it took several months for AirPlay 2 to be implemented. The ZIPP and the ZIPP MINI join several other speakers that have been updated with AirPlay 2 support, including several Sonos models. Sonos was one of the first companies to implement AirPlay 2 functionality. With AirPlay 2 support, Libratone speakers will be able to be used alongside other AirPlay 2 speakers for a multi-room home audio experience. Libratone's ZIPP speaker can be purchased from Amazon for $300, while the ZIPP MINI can be purchased from Amazon for

Apple Releases Firmware Update for AirPort Express With AirPlay 2 Support

Apple today released updated 7.8 firmware for 2012 802.11n AirPort Express models, introducing support for AirPlay 2. The new software can be downloaded onto compatible AirPort Express devices using the AirPort Utility app for iOS devices. After downloading the firmware update, AirPort Express users have reported being able to target the AirPort Express right alongside other AirPlay 2 devices when running iOS 11.4.1 or iOS 12. With the AirPlay 2 update, 2012 AirPort Express models offer support for multi-room audio and are able to work with other AirPlay 2 devices such as the HomePod, the Apple TV, and Sonos speakers. There has been speculation that the AirPort Express would be updated to include AirPlay 2 support after the accessory started showing up in the Home app as an AirPlay 2 accessory in the iOS 12 beta. Apple in April announced that its entire AirPort wireless router lineup, AirPort Express included, had been discontinued. Apple sold the AirPort Express until available stock ran out, but it is no longer available for purchase at this time. Because the AirPort Express was discontinued, it wasn't clear if it would indeed gain AirPlay 2 support because Apple's AirPort unit was disbanded, but Apple did indeed opt to introduce support for customers who are still using the AirPort Express units. Apple plans to provide service and parts for current AirPort Base stations for the next five

Denon and Marantz AV Receivers Updated With AirPlay 2 Support

Audio accessories from Denon and Marantz are gaining support for AirPlay 2 through firmware updates that are being distributed starting today. With the AirPlay 2 update, compatible Denon and Marantz devices offer support for multi-room audio and are able to work with other AirPlay 2 devices such as the HomePod, the Apple TV, and Sonos speakers. Both companies offer multiple AirPlay 2-compatible receiver options that are being updated with AirPlay 2 support. Apple maintains a list of AirPlay 2-compatible speakers, both released and upcoming, on its HomeKit website, but its listings for Denon and Marantz are not complete. A full list of the AirPlay 2-compatible devices the two companies are said to be offering was shared in May by Poor Audiophile. Both the Marantz and Denon brands are owned by Sound United, which also owns the Polk brand. Polk is not listed on Apple's HomeKit site, but it is a partner on the main AirPlay website. It's not clear when Polk devices will receive AirPlay 2 updates, but it does not appear that new firmware is rolling out as of yet. The same goes for Definitive Technology, another Sound United brand that is expected to get AirPlay 2 support at some point. Denon and Marantz join Sonos in offering AirPlay 2-compatible devices, but many other brands are working on AirPlay 2 support as well, including Beoplay, Devialet, Libratone, Naim, Bowers & Wilkins, McIntosh, Bose, and

Sonos Adds AirPlay 2 Support to Latest Speakers, Enabling Siri Control and Multi-Room Audio

Sonos today announced that its One, Beam, Playbase, and second-generation Play:5 speakers now support AirPlay 2, as promised. This marks the first time Sonos speakers have supported AirPlay in general, enabling users to easily stream audio from iTunes on Mac, and virtually any app for iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch, including Apple Music, YouTube, Spotify, Hulu, Pandora, and Netflix, to compatible Sonos speakers over Wi-Fi. AirPlay allows for Siri control of Apple Music or Podcasts playback on compatible Sonos speakers via iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, HomePod, and Apple TV. For example, one could say "Hey Siri, play Beats 1 Radio in the bedroom," after the speaker is named and assigned to a room in Apple's Home app on iOS. AirPlay 2 in particular enables multi-room audio playback for Sonos speakers paired with other Sonos speakers, HomePod, or Apple TVs. Sonos speakers appear in the AirPlay Picker within apps and Control Center on iOS devices. Sonos said its older speakers do not support AirPlay 2 on their own due to processor limitations, but in the Sonos app, they can be paired with any of the aforementioned speakers to enable support for Apple's new protocol. An older Playbar paired with a Playbase, for example, works with AirPlay 2. Sonos initially held out on adding AirPlay compatibility to its speakers in part due to minor latency issues addressed by AirPlay 2. Apple first enabled AirPlay 2 in iOS 11.4, released in late May. Sonos is the first third-party speaker maker to support the protocol, to be followed by Beoplay, Bang & Olufsen, Denon,

Apple Adds AirPlay 2 Section to HomeKit Site, Outlines Upcoming AirPlay 2 Speakers

Apple today updated its HomeKit site, which is where the company lists all of the available accessories and smart home products that offer HomeKit support, with a new AirPlay 2 section. This section of the site lists all of the upcoming speakers and receivers that will be updated with AirPlay 2 support now that the AirPlay 2 protocol is available. AirPlay 2 devices include the HomePod, of course, which is the first and only AirPlay 2 device available following today's iOS 11.4 update, along with speakers from companies that include Bang & Olufsen, Denon, Libratone, Marantz, Naim, and Sonos. Sonos, perhaps the most popular and well-known company introducing AirPlay 2 support, plans to add it to the Sonos One, the Play:5, and the Playbase. AirPlay 2 will work with other Sonos speakers, but one of these three Sonos devices will be required. Today's list is limited to manufacturers who have already pledged support for AirPlay 2, but it is likely to grow as additional companies announce AirPlay 2 functionality. A full list of speakers gaining AirPlay 2 support is below: Apple HomePod Beoplay A6 Beoplay A9 mk2 Beoplay M3 BeoSound 1 BeoSound 2 BeoSound 35 BeoSound Core BeoSound Essence mk2 BeoVision Eclipse (audio only) Denon AVR-X3500H Denon AVR-X4500H Denon AVR-X6500H Libratone Zipp Libratone Zipp Mini Marantz AV7705 Marantz NA6006 Marantz NR1509 Marantz NR1609 Marantz SR5013 Marantz SR6013 Marantz SR7013 Naim Mu-so Naim Mu-so QB Naim ND 555 Naim ND5 XS 2 Naim NDX 2 Naim Uniti Nova Naim Uniti Atom Naim Uniti Star Sonos One Sonos