DTS Play-Fi adds 7.1.4 surround sound and lands on Vestel TVs

Mike Wheatley

Xperi, the company behind the DTS Play-Fi wireless audio streaming platform, has announced a key update to its software, which lets listeners stream up to 24-bit/192kHz high-resolution audio with under 1 ms latency over their home’s WiFi, to up to 16 supported devices at once.


Play-Fi is supported by dozens of wireless speakers, soundbars, AV receivers and also Philips TVs. The biggest update announced at IFA 2022 is wireless playback of immersive movie soundtracks over a 7.1.4 channel speaker configuration. In a demo, Xperi hooked up a Play-Fi-powered Philips TV and streamed audio to a Philips Fidelio FB1 7.1.2 soundbar. An assortment of Philips FS1 wireless speakers were also used to demonstrate both surround and height effects, with the FW1 wireless subwoofer pumping out low-frequency effects.

Not only is the system very capable, but Xperi has also made setup very easy through the TV menu. Through the Home Theatre Setup menu on PlayFi-enabled TVs, which are currently only Philips’ TVs, users can access a user interface that makes it simple to add various soundbars and speakers and configure settings such as the individual speaker’s channels, levels and delays. Similar to the menu found on any decent AV receiver.

Even so, it’s not necessary to use a TV to set up a 7.1.4 surround system, since the Play-Fi mobile application also provides an easy way to do this with compatible speakers. However, it’s worth using the Play-Fi TV if one is available as it can also be designated as the centre speaker in multiroom setups, providing another endpoint.

The second new feature announced at IFA is gapless music playback, which is something that may be best appreciated by classical music lovers who want to avoid the audible gaps between the sections of a symphony. Extended DJ mixes can also benefit from this feature.

The updates mark the interesting evolution of Play-Fi from what began life as a way to stream music to wireless all-in-one speakers. With the format now supporting multichannel audio scaled all the way up to 7.1.4, Play-Fi becomes a much more viable alternative to a dedicated AV receiver. Especially given the way Xperi has made everything so easy to put together with its simple-to-use menus. Just switch on the TV, choose the speakers you want to apply, and off you go.

Perhaps the bigger news out of IFA 2022 though is not the evolution of Play-Fi, but the expansion of its ecosystem, which already supports more than 400 audio products from 30 brands. Xperi announced it’s partnering with Vestal, the manufacturer of Toshiba and JVC TVs in Europe, to bring Play-Fi to its upcoming televisions. Even better, it announced similar partnerships with Hisense and TCL to support Play-Fi in soundbars. Their TVs weren’t mentioned, but the fact they now have an established relationship with Xperi means Play-Fi and its capabilities will certainly be on their radar.