Introduction: Sonos Play 1 Under-Cupboard Mount
I finally took the plunge and purchased my first Sonos audio system component, the Play 1 wireless player. I have been contemplating the investment for quite some time, and now that they have an affordable entry point with the $199 Play 1, I bought one. I even found a coupon online for a free Sonos Bridge, which saved me $50.
The Bridge connects with an Ethernet cable to my network router -- which is upstairs in the office -- to provide an interface for the Sonos system to the Internet. The rest of the Sonos components talk with each other across their own wireless mesh network. The more Sonos devices you have, the stronger the connectivity you get among the components. If I decide to install a Sonos player in the room where I have my network router some time in the future, I may decide to remove the Bridge and use that player as the wired interface.
For the time being, I have a single Sonos 1 player, which I located in the kitchen on the ground floor. I plugged it in and got it working pretty quickly, and I have been very satisfied with the system. I quickly realized I wanted to get it off the counter, to protect it from inevitable kitchen counter mishaps, and to create a more refined installation. The Play/Pause and volume rocker buttons needed to remain accessible, so I began to imagine lots of complex shelf configurations to mount under the kitchen cupboards that would provide access to the buttons on top of the player. There is a 1/4-20 mount point on the back of the player that works with standard speaker mounts, so I started researching existing speaker mounts. Then an epiphany struck!
As I was putting the boxes away, I noticed something curious: The Sonos logo happens to look the same when seen upside down as it does right-side up. I thought: "Maybe I could mount the player upside down, under the cupboard, and access the buttons on the bottom of the player!" A quick check on the Sonos forum confirmed that the Play 1 could indeed be mounted upside down! I then set upon the path that led me to this Instructable.
Step 1: The Mounting Bracket and Hardware
The Play 1 player has a 1/4-20 threaded mount 2 3/16" up from the bottom of the unit. This permits the use of standard hardware to mount the player securely from that point. After a few measurements of the Play 1, I fabricated a block of 3/4" plywood and used furniture bolts and barrel nuts to secure it through the floor of a kitchen cupboard. A 1" 1/4-20 bolt and washer hold the player to the block.
Step 2: Fabricate and Drill
The PDF drawing shows the dimensions I used for the block. (I'll explain the cut-out in an upcoming step.) The hardware you use will dictate the exact dimensions, but this shows how I laid out the cuts and holes for the 2 1/2" furniture bolts and 5/16" barrel nuts. I used a drill press for all the holes, but a hand drill with a steady hand would work well, too.
The notch at the top of the block let's the power cord pass through the block unimpeded.
I attached the block to the player and positioned it under the counter where it would be installed. I marked the edges of the block where it contacted the bottom of the cupboard, then measured off for the holes for the furniture bolts. The bolt holes will be drilled from the bottom of the cupboard up into the cupboard.
I placed a block of wood inside the cupboard to prevent tear-out when the drill bit penetrated the floor of the cupboard, and drilled the holes for the bolts. I then drilled countersink holes for the heads of the bolts so they would not protrude above the floor of the cupboard.
Note: When drilling the countersinks, be careful not to go all the way through the cupboard! Drill just deep enough to recess the head of the bolt.
Step 3: Attach the Mount, and Install!
The player as an Ethernet port, a power cord and a 1/4-20 mounting point near the bottom of the unit. There are buttons on top of the unit for play/pause and volume control. By installing the player upside down, it fits right up underneath the cupboard and permits access to the controls. In this install position I am not using the Ethernet port, so it is covered by the bracket. If that port is needed, drill a hole in the bracket to accept the Ethernet cable.
Attach the bracket to the player with the 1/4-20 bolt. Make sure the bolt doesn't "bottom out" in the mounting hole; this could cause the player to be loose in the mount.Use washers to shim the head of the bolt to give enough threads for a snug fit.
Insert the bolts into the holes in the cupboard. Insert the barrel nuts into the bracket and orient the holes vertically. there are markings on the barrel nut to show the orientation of the threaded hole for the bolt.
Make sure the power cord is in the channel cut for it, and slide the bracket up onto the furniture bolts. Thread the bolts into the barrel nuts and tighten them so the bracket is snug to the bottom of the cupboard.
You now have a Play 1 mounted to the bottom of your kitchen cabinet, accessible and out of the way!
Step 4: Modification -- Optional
So, the player is now in place and I'm admiring my handiwork while getting a drink of water from the kitchen sink. As I'm looking at the side of the player mounted under the cabinet, and I realize I can see the mounting block and cable bundled behind the player. I bet I'll be the only one to notice, but it will bother me unless I explore a way to address the issue.
The bracket is a little over 2" wide. From the front it's completely hidden, but not from the side. So, I decided to try moving the cable bundle off-center to one side of the unit, still not visible from the front but more concealed from one side.
The PDF in Step 2 shows the optional cut-out. This will allow the cable to be bundled over to one side of the bracket. Other than the cut-out, the bracket is symmetrical, so it can be flipped to locate the cable bundle on either side. It still supports the speaker and keeps it from flexing, but it shifts the sight line from the side.
It's a small detail, but now I don't see the cabling when I stand at the kitchen sink.