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Tara's treehouse Sonos system

Going out on a limb for good sound

Tara leads Crutchfield’s social media and video teams. She and her husband Rob moved out to the country last year. The property has a cozy home surrounded by acres of peaceful woods, and a treehouse that’s way cooler than any kids’ clubhouse! With French doors leading to a balcony, and ample seating, the only thing missing was... music.

Tara and husband in front of treehouse

Tara and Rob chilling in their treehouse.

When Tara described her treehouse — and that it already had power run — our first thought was, “We’ve got to put some speakers out there!” And we wanted to check out Sonos’ new outdoor speakers to hear how they sound.

Sonos takes it outside

Tara has been a fan of Sonos gear since the company’s early days, and already had a 3-zone system in their house. Extending that to the treehouse seemed like a no-brainer.


Tara installed one pair of the Sonos Outdoor Speakers in the treehouse's balcony. The speakers face the back yard and can flood that large space with crisp, clear sound.

The first step was adding a Wi-Fi extender so their home network would reach to the treehouse. Then they were ready for sound!

A helpful pro tip

Tara and Rob decided to install one pair of Sonos Outdoor Speakers in the main room and a second pair on the balcony. A single Sonos Amp would power both pairs, playing streamed music from a phone.

But before the installation, Tara and Rob got a helpful tip from Norm, one of Crutchfield’s A/V installation experts.

If they’d only had one pair of speakers, the Sonos app would have been all they needed to control the volume. But with two pairs, they wanted to adjust the volume of each pair independently. The solution? Volume controls.

“I never would have thought of that,” Tara told me. “I’m glad Norm did.”

Sonos Amp

The Sonos Amp powers both pairs of Outdoor Speakers. But for Tara and Rob to be able to adjust the volume of both pairs independently, they needed to also install two Niles volume controls in-line.

Instead of running wires directly from the amp to the speakers, they installed two Niles volume controls in-line, which allowed precise volume level adjustment for each pair.

Adding movies to the mix

Having great sound in the treehouse also added a cool dimension to watching movies. Tara brings her MacBook up there and streams movies and shows from Netflix or Amazon, while sending the audio to the Sonos Amp wirelessly via AirPlay® 2.

Looking ahead, Tara plans to make two more additions to the treehouse entertainment system: a pocket projector like one of these Kodak models, for a bigger image to match the big Sonos sound, ... and a fridge!

treehouse sonos

Tara and Rob were thrilled with their new system. “The treehouse is now our favorite listening room!”

Need help choosing speakers for your backyard, patio, ... or treehouse?

Our advisors know the gear we carry inside and out. You can contact us today for free. We can walk you through designing a setup that will work exactly how you want it.

Crutchfield customers enjoy free lifetime tech support with every order.

  • Mary from Spokane

    Posted on 4/29/2020

    This is nothing but a slick advertisement!! Shameful!

  • Cindy Walker ( Lucinda ) from Delray Beach

    Posted on 3/30/2020

    It is lovely to read an upbeat column!!! Rejoice... Nice to know others are using there enterprising skills and building a "sound house" Keep smiling and if you come up with any "new do it yourself ideas"... Please Share

  • Sarah from Crozet

    Posted on 3/14/2020

    Love it great idea From Sarah and Rich

  • Woogle from Bellevue

    Posted on 2/12/2020

    Nice article! I am thinking of doing something similar for my deck with the exact same Sonos equipment. My understanding was that for more than one pair of Sonos outdoor speakers, you have to wire them in series back to the amp. How does the volume control work independently when doing this? Can you post a wiring diagram please?

  • Marian Petrides, M.D. from Waitsfield

    Posted on 2/12/2020

    Since the treehouse already has WiFi (courtesy of the WiFi extender) thereby enabling AirPlay 2, why not just go with two pair of HomePods? No wires and no need for volume control, just voice control or local control on the top of each HomePod. I hated the idea of running wires in my living room because it would have been a pain given the fireplace centrally located along one wall and the large view-enhancing windows on the other wall. When HomePods went on sale for $199 apiece (comparable in price to Sonos speakers), I jumped at the chance to get a couple pair. Now I have two stereo pairs, one in the living room and the other in my bedroom. No unsightly wires. No need for physical volume controls. And no need to find a place for a separate amplifier. Of course this wouldn't work for outdoor speakers. Big drawback. Sigh.

  • Scott d Szeglowski from East Aurora

    Posted on 2/12/2020

    Sweet pad . man cave - elevated.

  • SONOSFREAK from Naples

    Posted on 2/12/2020

    Super fun idea. I also appreciate the insight in AirPlay. However, I have Niles volume controls - that I installed in 1998. When started running my speakers through SONOS those knobs became obsolete. Presumably, the treehouse has WIFI? The speaker volume could be easily controlled through the iPad? Why not just run the wires directly to the speakers?

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