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RIP BeoLink Multiroom (1982-2020)

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1990
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1990 Posted: Thu, Mar 5 2020 8:06 AM

So now it's official: all new B&O products won't have BeoLink multiroom. Only Airplay 2 and Chromecast for integrated multiroom, and bluetooth and line-in for other third party products.

Such a sad day. Goodbye touch to join, goodbye home control...

I am very curious to see how this affects B&O. Maybe the products will be easier to understand for the mass market, less confusion.

Styrizo
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Styrizo replied on Thu, Mar 5 2020 8:48 AM

Is this a fact or just a deduction from the absence of Beolink Multiroom capabilities on the new Balance?

Maybe the company is just segmenting the speaker lineup with products that integrate in BL Multiroom and have Deezer, TuneIn, etc. and others that rely exclusively on Airplay2 / Chromecast with no built-in audio apps.

Hope it's just this way (let's cross fingers)

Duels
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Duels replied on Thu, Mar 5 2020 8:54 AM
Styrizo:

Is this a fact or just a deduction from the absence of Beolink Multiroom capabilities on the new Balance?

Maybe the company is just segmenting the speaker lineup with products that integrate in BL Multiroom and have Deezer, TuneIn, etc. and others that rely exclusively on Airplay2 / Chromecast with no built-in audio apps.

Hope it's just this way (let's cross fingers)

John from B&O Manchester made the statement on a YouTube video.
1990
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1990 replied on Thu, Mar 5 2020 8:54 AM

Styrizo:

Is this a fact or just a deduction from the absence of Beolink Multiroom capabilities on the new Balance?

John from B&O Manchester just announced it. Going forward no new B&O-products will feature BeoLink/Multiroom. So from now on it's a legacy product. I just hope the Eclipse MK2 will have Multiroom, then the whole TV-lineup (Harmony/Eclipse/Stage) will have Beolink for the time to come...

Sandyb
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Sandyb replied on Thu, Mar 5 2020 9:21 AM

Ha! (well not really)...but I did try and warn of this many times here.

As I said 18 months ago, I was told that a decision had been made that the primary control paradigm would be shifting to AP and CC.

That clearly spelt the end for B&O's own mutli-room protocol - and that transition seems to be happening now.

Thankfully existing NL products are generally fairly robust, from an expanding / reducing the experience point of view, so I wouldn't be too worried about (theoretical) lack of support going forward. And who's even to say B&O will drop support for NL products any time soon.

Many questions pose themselves about any future physical remote they are rumoured to be producing.

 

ngnear
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ngnear replied on Thu, Mar 5 2020 9:26 AM
I guess this means they can source ready-made electronics for the whole network part. No need for bespoke parts including BeoLink. Makes development faster and cheaper. They can concentrate on the design and more importantly on the sound aspects.
1990
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1990 replied on Thu, Mar 5 2020 9:27 AM

Sandyb:

Many questions pose themselves about any future physical remote they are rumoured to be producing.

I second that. Curious whether it will essentially be an AP2/CC controller?

(Noteworthy that BeoSound Balance is not compatible with BeoRemote One or the Essence Wheely. The last one is especially weird as the Essence remote mirrors the top plate controls of BS Balance.)

Sandyb
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Sandyb replied on Thu, Mar 5 2020 10:02 AM

Yeah, welcome to a new world I guess.

So here's another question.

If you have some of their high end speakers, like 17/18/5/50/90s and have an audio source connected to it - lets say a streamer, be it own brand or other - how do you expand the experience to other rooms. As those speakers are not AP themselves. I guess if the streamer is AP capable, then it will work. But a vinyl player connected to 50's for example? Hmm.

I get it with TV's - as all future B&O type TV's (they're not Beovisions any more, not in any meaningful sense) will have a speaker part a la Stage, which is Airplay equipped. And in this case, a broadcast or movie playing on this setup with sound coming from the Stage lets say, I'm guessing a Balance (for ex) can join via AP.  Although licensing restrictions may apply depending on the content - SKY TV's app on iOS and OSX places restrictions on what can be airplay'ed.  Another wrinkle - not entirely under B&O's control, and you could easily find yourself stuck.

Anyway, the absence of any built in sources in the Balance does point to the future - one where they have conceded multi-room control over to Apple and Google. Inevitable I guess, though its not quiet clear to me why both couldn't continue to coexist in the way they have over recent years.

 

 

1990
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1990 replied on Thu, Mar 5 2020 10:06 AM

Sandyb:

I get it with TV's - as all future B&O type TV's (they're not Beovisions any more, not in any meaningful sense) will have a speaker part a la Stage, which is Airplay equipped. And in this case, a broadcast or movie playing on this setup with sound coming from the Stage lets say, I'm guessing a Balance (for ex) can join via AP.  Although licensing restrictions may apply depending on the content - SKY TV's app on iOS and OSX places restrictions on what can be airplay'ed.  Another wrinkle - not entirely under B&O's control, and you could easily find yourself stuck.

Alas, you cannot Airplay from the HDMI sources of the Stage/Harmony/Eclipse. The trouble with Airplay is that you can only start/stop streams from an iOS/macOS. No other sources than a streaming app.

Multiroom from the LG-era onwards will be an audio-only affair.

nico vercammen
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With airplay your streaming device needs always to be connected to wifi... when you leave the house for a sec, the music just stops ... this is unusable for me... i have BO stuff in almost every room. In every room is also a beoremote which makes it very easy to join the other rooms... i do this also with my Domintell home automation system via the gateway, this works prefect.

I really do not their decision to drop their miltiroom in the future...
Sandyb
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Sandyb replied on Thu, Mar 5 2020 10:18 AM

So I see from your response on the other thread.

Horrible outcome.

Almost every day, when watching something on the TV, I'd wander into the kitchen and join my BS2 whilst cooking.

I'd warned may times about the death of B&O multi room, though hadn't quite realised this additional wrinkle.

No more purchases for a few years until absolutely necessary, or until things evolve in a clearer direction.

With Apple seemingly working on surround processing for their speakers, I woudlnt be surprised if B&O ditch this as well.

But I wouldn't want to give MM sleepless nights so soon.

 

1990:

Sandyb:

I get it with TV's - as all future B&O type TV's (they're not Beovisions any more, not in any meaningful sense) will have a speaker part a la Stage, which is Airplay equipped. And in this case, a broadcast or movie playing on this setup with sound coming from the Stage lets say, I'm guessing a Balance (for ex) can join via AP.  Although licensing restrictions may apply depending on the content - SKY TV's app on iOS and OSX places restrictions on what can be airplay'ed.  Another wrinkle - not entirely under B&O's control, and you could easily find yourself stuck.

Alas, you cannot Airplay from the HDMI sources of the Stage/Harmony/Eclipse. The trouble with Airplay is that you can only start/stop streams from an iOS/macOS. No other sources than a streaming app.

Multiroom from the LG-era onwards will be an audio-only affair.

 

ebnrob
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ebnrob replied on Thu, Mar 5 2020 10:18 AM

This is bad news if it's true. Spotify connect looks to also missing in new products. I use Spotify as my music streaming service and have recently switched from mac to a windows surface as my work laptop where there is no way to cast to Airplay, nor Chromecast for that matter, within the Spotify windows app - only spotify connect speakers show. Without the network link how could other speakers join the 'experience' without having to open the streaming app on the phone and select the pre-configured speaker group? I've tried airplay streaming from the ipad to the Essence 2 and it's really quite a cumbersome experience. Rob.

StKong
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StKong replied on Thu, Mar 5 2020 10:37 AM
How will this new reality tie in with a Beoliving Intelligence?

Perhaps there are marvels we have yet to hear about hidden in this product?

One can only hope.
1990
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1990 replied on Thu, Mar 5 2020 10:38 AM

I wonder if B&O collect stats from the BeoCloud regarding use of BeoLink vs AP/CC and what % of customers use BeoLink.

Millemissen
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Seems to be a good loudspeaker (I have yet to hear it, though) - and a bad Beosound!

MM

There is a tv - and there is a BV.

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Hiort replied on Thu, Mar 5 2020 11:05 AM

1990:

I wonder if B&O collect stats from the BeoCloud regarding use of BeoLink vs AP/CC and what % of customers use BeoLink.

They at least should be able to do that from the usage of the App.

I think it sucks, but I understand that a company that is struggling to survive may think that its better to rely on existing technology from the big guys rater than develop themseleves.

Google / Airplay does not (to my knowlede) support my favourite usecase: the "Join" function.

 

 

 

 

 

Livingroom: BL3, BL11, BV11-46 Kitchen: Beosound 1 GVA, Beocom 2 Bathroom: M3 Homeoffice: M3, Beocom 2  Library: Beosound Emerge, Beocom 6000 Bedroom: M5, Essence remote  Travel: Beoplay E8 2.0, Beoplay EQ, Beoplay Earset

1990
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1990 replied on Thu, Mar 5 2020 11:05 AM

Millemissen:

Seems to be a good loudspeaker (I have yet to hear it, though) - and a bad Beosound!

MM

Indeed!!

This means the planning I’ve been doing for my next home needs some rethinking. I’ll need to get study Roon, Savant, Control4 etc a lot closer than I wanted to.

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Mogelmose replied on Thu, Mar 5 2020 11:13 AM

The biggest reason i can justify keeping with B&O is the support of their legacy.
I love my Beogram sound distributed throughout the house from the BS7000. This feature can't be replicated in any way with other brands.
My 2018 Moment is the center for all my music experience on daily base. This unit seems pointless to me now as it doesnt have AP or CC.

These two features is the ones that i can feel my friends and family admire the most from the B&O systems when they visit.
Guess my BL3500 in the dining room will go obsolete before planned


I understand that it is costly to keep B&O's own structure updated while AP and CC does just the same.

All i can say is that i am personally sad that this is the outcome. I guess the time of the BLC, 1611 and other mystery boxes are over. There isn't going to be a Beolink > CC protocol.

I hate using my phone / tablet for everthing: Thats why i love my Moment.

BUMMER!

Millemissen
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Actually it would have been better to call it a Beoplay Balance.....then we would have had a better chance to understand what we get (= a B&O speaker that plays from streaming devices)!

MM

There is a tv - and there is a BV.

StKong
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StKong replied on Thu, Mar 5 2020 11:18 AM
Millemissen:

Actually it would have been better to call it a Beo play Balance.....then we would have had a better chance to understand what we get (= a B&O speaker that play s from streaming devices)!

Indeed. The Beoplay A1 being renamed Beoaound A1 can be seen as a forewarning of where we are today.

A strange day for all beofans.
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beojeff replied on Thu, Mar 5 2020 11:23 AM

For me, this is horrible news.

Neither the BeoSound Moment nor the NL/ML Converter support either Airplay or Google Chrome.

When I'm home, I like to disconnect from my phone. I like being able to move into a room and join the multiroom sound with a simple press on the Essence wall remote.

Millemissen
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A product launched a couple of months ago (the Beosound Stage) has Beolink multiroom support and the ‘touch to join’ feature.

Weird!!!

MM

There is a tv - and there is a BV.

1990
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1990 replied on Thu, Mar 5 2020 12:44 PM

I guess the Balance is the first of the “new audio platform” generation for which we saw a job advert a while back.

 

1990
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1990 replied on Thu, Mar 5 2020 12:45 PM

Furthermore I’m curious why they bothered with the BLI if this is the route they are taking. 

Millemissen
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1990:

I guess the Balance is the first of the “new audio platform” generation for which we saw a job advert a while back.

 

That is not a ‘new’ platform - unless you mean that they hired some people to slayghter the current/former platform.....leaving nothing but an AP/CC streaming platform.

MM

There is a tv - and there is a BV.

Hiort
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Hiort replied on Thu, Mar 5 2020 1:28 PM
beojeff:

When I'm home, I like to disconnect from my phone. I like being able to move into a room and join the multiroom sound with a simple press on the Essence wall remote.

Exactly!

 

 

 

 

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beojeff replied on Thu, Mar 5 2020 1:40 PM

1990:

Furthermore I’m curious why they bothered with the BLI if this is the route they are taking. 

I had thought that it was odd that the BLI doesn't support Beo4/BeoRemote functions. Now I see why.

Also, in looking at the speakers/music systems on the B&O website, it looks like the BeoPlay M5 is the only one now that has Deezer and TuneIn streaming services listed as supported. I heavily use both of those services.

This is not a direction of B&O that I like at all. I guess I won't be buying any of their new products.

mbolo01
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mbolo01 replied on Thu, Mar 5 2020 2:14 PM

beojeff:
it looks like the BeoPlay M5 is the only one now that has Deezer and TuneIn streaming services listed as supported.

Not anymore .... and software updates to all our products are knocking at the door, I guess these services will be removed without our consent.

BS Moment, BS Core, BG 4002, BC 4500, BS1, BL18, BL19, BL8000 + RCV1, A6, M5, M3, A1, P6 (tks Botty), H5, TR1

Mikipidia
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last time I asked it was a 20/80 split between beolink and ap2/CC, I bet that has gone even more the way of AP2/CC. I too have been saying this for a while so I am with SandyB on this one.

It would've made sense to keep the beoplay brand alive and call this that perhaps but they won't use beoplay for anything anymore as the beoplay brand is dead, everything is just B&O now.

Also spotify being gone is a spotify thing, not a B&O thing, spotify mandated you're only allowed to use it on 1 device. so no multirooming and or sharing accounts and all that, Deezer doesn't seem to care what you do as long as it's paid for :p

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steve1977
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mbolo01:

Not anymore .... and software updates to all our products are knocking at the door, I guess these services will be removed without our consent.

BS Moment, BS Core, BG 4002, BC 4500, BS1, BL18, BL19, BL8000 + RCV1, A6, M5, M3, A1, P6 (tks Botty), H5, TR1

That’s a joke or for real?
mbolo01
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mbolo01 replied on Thu, Mar 5 2020 2:58 PM

steve1977:
That’s a joke or for real?

Taking M5 Tech specs from B&O website french pages as an example (others show the same):

Services de streaming

Apple AirPlay Chromecast intégré Bluetooth Beolink Multiroom Spotify Connect QPlay 2.0 (Chine uniquement)

BS Moment, BS Core, BG 4002, BC 4500, BS1, BL18, BL19, BL8000 + RCV1, A6, M5, M3, A1, P6 (tks Botty), H5, TR1

nico vercammen
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do not forget there are a lot of people using B&O who are not technical. They will just use the basic B&O app for multiroom. They are not on this forum, so the 20/80 is just for the more technical people on this forum, not for all the B&O users. It is very difficult to explain to non tech people the differences  between AP2/ casting, spotify connect, tune-in etc... Things should be more simple to use not more difficult. ALso there is a big difference in the number of devices you have. If you have only one device or may be two i can understand using AP2/CC, but with a lot more devices it's not that user friendly anymore ...

I'm a technical guy and i do not like AP2/CC at all. I can not believe you need your phone/tablet for streaming. It should be a remote, not more than that, not a streaming device. I carry my phone always with me, so when i leave my home for a sec it should not stop playing music. 

 

nico

 

 

steve1977
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mbolo01:

Taking M5 Tech specs from B&O website french pages as an example (others show the same):

Services de streaming Apple AirPlay Chromecast intégré Bluetooth Beolink Multiroom Spotify Connect QPlay 2.0 (Chine uniquement)

BS Moment, BS Core, BG 4002, BC 4500, BS1, BL18, BL19, BL8000 + RCV1, A6, M5, M3, A1, P6 (tks Botty), H5, TR1

You’re saying that all my NL devices will no longer support deezer, tunein and dlna? If so, that’s the end of the b&o app as well?

That can only be a joke...
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nico vercammen:
i do not like AP2/CC at all. I can not believe you need your phone/tablet for streaming. It should be a remote, not more

Some people stream from a local computer, often a Mac Mini with iTunes (which can stream to multiple (B&O) devices since forever) and use their phone or tablet as a remote with the iTunes remote App.
I use that setup for years now without downside (if your local wifi is good). For us it's difficult to understand why BL mutliroom would be better and why they would have to switch to it.

mbolo01
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mbolo01 replied on Thu, Mar 5 2020 3:37 PM

steve1977:
You’re saying that all my NL devices will no longer support deezer, tunein and dlna? If so, that’s the end of the b&o app as well?

That can only be a joke...

Sorry Sad, I missed a paragraph for the M5:

Services musicaux intégrés

Spotify Deezer TuneIn (radio Internet), QQ Music (Chine uniquement)

But no such paragraph for BS 1, BS 2, M3, A9

Core still has the Integrated Music Services listed

Hopefully it is a documentation, otherwise it would be a big big big disappointment 

BS Moment, BS Core, BG 4002, BC 4500, BS1, BL18, BL19, BL8000 + RCV1, A6, M5, M3, A1, P6 (tks Botty), H5, TR1

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Sandyb replied on Thu, Mar 5 2020 3:38 PM

because starting your music with a computer is not how many people do things anymore.....

And BL does allow simple things like physically tapping a speaker and get it to start or join something........often much more convenient than wandering over to a computer,

AP and CC is all good and suits many, but that didn't necessitate removing NL.

 

 

matador43:

nico vercammen:
i do not like AP2/CC at all. I can not believe you need your phone/tablet for streaming. It should be a remote, not more

Some people stream from a local computer, often a Mac Mini with iTunes (which can stream to multiple (B&O) devices since forever) and use their phone or tablet as a remote with the iTunes remote App.
I use that setup for years now without downside (if your local wifi is good). For us it's difficult to understand why BL mutliroom would be better and why they would have to switch to it.

 

matador43
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Sandyb:

because starting your music with a computer is not how many people do things anymore.....

I agree BL may have his advantages (I say "may" because i didn't experience them myself). From what I've read: the join function, listening to TV audio anywhere else, different music by the room and maybe more.

But Smile

I never come close to my computer for anything: it has no screen, no keyboard, isn't even visible. Rooms are muted and joined by the remote app.

I'm not comparing the two systems, I'm just saying that people used to Airplay may not understand the benefits of NL, even if they have a compatible B&O device and maybe that's the reason why it's 20/80 (meaning not enough for B&O to maintain the technology).

Whatever reason it is, that's very Apple'esque!

Millemissen
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Sandyb:

because starting your music with a computer is not how many people do things anymore.....

And BL does allow simple things like physically tapping a speaker and get it to start or join something........often much more convenient than wandering over to a computer,

AP and CC is all good and suits many, but that didn't necessitate removing NL.

Totally agree!

MM

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mbolo01 replied on Thu, Mar 5 2020 3:53 PM

matador43:
why BL mutliroom would be better and why they would have to switch to it.

Because of the "join" feature.

Let say you have a Mac Mini streaming AP(2) to a Core in the living room where you are.
You now move to the bathroom where you have a M3.

If you want to start the same music flow in the bathroom, in order to "join" what's playing in the living room:

  • You have to go back to your controlling device, unless you always carry it with you or you anticipated your move to another room, and add the the bathroom speaker in the AP2 group.
  • I just have to press the M3 join button and same music than in the leaving room starts, thanks to BL.

I do that every single day with my NL devices located in different rooms, wether I listen to AP(2) stream, Deezer, TuneIn or to physical records. I really don't want to loose that.

BS Moment, BS Core, BG 4002, BC 4500, BS1, BL18, BL19, BL8000 + RCV1, A6, M5, M3, A1, P6 (tks Botty), H5, TR1

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Sandyb replied on Thu, Mar 5 2020 4:05 PM

All fine, but only a minority want to maintain a computer driven music setup.

All the more because it always has to be on.

 

 

matador43:

Sandyb:

because starting your music with a computer is not how many people do things anymore.....

I agree BL may have his advantages (I say "may" because i didn't experience them myself). From what I've read: the join function, listening to TV audio anywhere else, different music by the room and maybe more.

But Smile

I never come close to my computer for anything: it has no screen, no keyboard, isn't even visible. Rooms are muted and joined by the remote app.

I'm not comparing the two systems, I'm just saying that people used to Airplay may not understand the benefits of NL, even if they have a compatible B&O device and maybe that's the reason why it's 20/80 (meaning not enough for B&O to maintain the technology).

Whatever reason it is, that's very Apple'esque!

 

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