Bug: Roon stops playing zone A when BT headphone is turned off in zone B [Expected Behavior]

Core Machine

ROCK Version 1.0 (build 227) with Roon Core Version 1.8 (build 790) stable running on PrimeMini 4 with Intel Core 8i7-8650U vPro (NUC7i7DN), 2x8 GB DDR4-2400MHz, 2 TB SSD internal storage

Network Details

I’m located in Munich/Germany, connected via 100/44 Mbit/s DSL.
The network uses DHCP, is fast and stable. DNS is Google.
My DSL router & WiFi AP (Fritzbox 7590 with latest Firmware 07.25, 2,4 and 5 GHz) connects the Roon Remotes (all via WiFi: iPhone 11 Pro, iPad Air, MacBook Pro, all latest firmware and latest Roon software).
The Core is wired via Gigabit-Ethernet to the router, as is the main system network streamer (LUMIN).

Audio Devices

ROCK (Core)
➜ Ethernet ➜
Fritzbox 7590 (DSL Router, WiFi AP)
➜ WiFi ➜
Sonos Play:1
➜ WiFi ➜
MacBook Pro

Description Of Issue

I’m using Roon on my WiFi connected MacBook to play music on a Roon zone A (Sonos PLAY:1, also connected via WiFi). When I switch off the bluetooth connected headphone (Bose → MacBook Pro), Roon stops playing in zone A.

Obviously this should not happen. The two zones have nothing in common and should not be connected / dependent in any way.

Roon on MacOS is using System Output (default device).

This only happens when the headphone is in active mode. Once it is in sleep mode, it can be turned off without stopping the music on the Sonos system. But when I turn it off/on (again - without playing anything locally on the MacBook Pro) and then off again, the music stops immediately in zone A.

@support - any idea what to do?

Hey @Philipp_Schaefer,

I cannot thank you enough for following up on your post - I am so sorry we’ve missed it for this long :pleading_face:

I’ve moved this thread into our technical team’s queue so they can take a closer look and share any insight they might have.

Please, bear with us a little longer :bear:

2 posts were split to a new topic: Sometimes Bluetooth Headphones Are Lost

@support - you there?

Hello @Philipp_Schaefer ,

Apologies for the delay! Our team’s queue is longer than typical at the moment, but we’re working to get back to everyone as quickly as we can.

This does sound strange, can you please provide some more details here? When you switch off the Bluetooth headphones, are you on the Sonos zone? Are they typically set up as a grouped zone? If they are a grouped zone, then this is expected behavior.

Hi @noris,

I just replicated it, and made some additional experiments to narrow it down. To your question: Roon was playing music to the Sonos Zone, which was not grouped with any other zone (never was).

First I started the music in Roon on the Sonos via my MacBook Pro. I then switched on the Bluetooth headphones. They automatically connect to my MacBook. But no music was playing locally (Zone: MacBook Pro). I then turned off the headphones. And the music on the Sonos stopped.

Second I started the music in Roon on the Sonos via my iPhone 11. I then switched on the Bluetooth headphones. They automatically connect to my iPhone, too. But no music was playing locally (Zone: iPhone 11). I then turned off the headphones again. And the music on the Sonos stopped again.

So this happens on MacOS and iOS (both: latest versions).

I then disabled the local Audio Zone in Roon on the MacBook. Started music via MacBook on Sonos zone. Turned the headphone on. And off. Music stopped again.

Next I also disabled the local Audio zone of the iPhone. Started music on Sonos from the iPhone. Turned on headphones. Turned it off. Music stopped again.

Next I disabled Bluetooth on the iPhone. Started music on Sonos via iPhone. Turned on the headphones (so they only connected to the MacBook). Turned them off again. Music stopped playing.

(Ok, I have to admit I did the last experiment too, where I also disabled BT on the MacBook, started music on the Sonos and turned headphones on/off. As expected nothing happened. At least a confirmation that we do not need to send the Ghostbusters…).

I then tried the same experiments playing to a different zone, in this case to my hardwired LUMIN U1 Mini in my main system.

To make it short: It shows the same stopping of the music to the Lumin zone when I turn off the headphone, but only, when the headphone was connected to the MacBook. When the headphone was connected to the iPhone, the playback was immune to the on/off of the headphone.

But - a new strange thing happens: when I play to that Lumin zone, the headphone connected to the MacBook, and I then turn off Bluetooth (instead of turning off the headphone itself), the music also stops. Also here the iPhone behaved differently, when I disabled BT (while headphone connected), the music continued playing. OK.

To conclude: turning off an BT connected headphone on an Apple device / Roon remote can stop the music of an independent, not grouped Sonos audio zone, even if the played music was not started from that device / remote.
This is not related to local audio zones from the remote(s), it also happens when there is/are no local zone(s) on the BT connected device(s).

I suspect there’s a universal iOS & MacOS STOP function, activated when an audio BT device is turned off (or BT is disabled while a device is connected), that gets routed to Roon and wrongly stops (most, see below) playing zones instead of only the zone, where the BT device was connected to.
iOS and MacOS behave differently, depending on the connected endpoint. With Sonos, both OS show that bug, my hardwired LUMIN endpoint was only affected via MacOS.

Hope this helps.

Hi @Philipp_Schaefer ,

Apologies for the slow response from our end here.

I spoke to the team regarding your findings and our hardware team has noted that due to how the Now Playing controls work on MacOS, this is expected behavior when connecting/disconnecting Bluetooth headphones. I wish I had better news for you here, but there is unfortunately not much that we can do in this regard.

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Thanks for the clarification, @noris.

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