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Raspberry Pi as headless streamer

Discussion in 'd.i.y.' started by RichardH, Jan 16, 2013.

  1. RichardH

    RichardH Bodging pleb

    Having seen Jem's comments about using an O2 Joggler as a squeezebox, I got interested. However, I realised that we'd most likley use a smartphone/tablet to control it anyway, so decided it might be nicer to have something more discreet.

    A lot of the stuff for the Joggler also works on the Pi - or has a similar version thereof. I'm hoping to use SqueezeLite.

    So I have just taken delivery of a Raspberry Pi, a micro USB wall wart and am waiting for an SD card. Not being Linux-y at all, it will be interesting to see how I get on!

    If I get it up and running I'll try and do an idiot's guide if anyone else is interested.
  2. sam_cat

    sam_cat ᶜ ᶦˢ ᶠᵒʳ ᶜᵒᵒᵏᶦᵉ

    Xbmc is impressive as well.
  3. Bemused

    Bemused What's this all about then?

    Be interested for sure, meanwhile I am battling away with my Joggler and SqueezePlay OS
  4. mudlark

    mudlark nearly half a clue

    I'm in the same place. I can now download an image and stick it on a SD card that boots. Amazing what a pillock can achieve.

    I've ordered a £15.00 SD card with xbmc on as well. I'll report back if anyone is interested.
  5. Herat

    Herat pfm Member

  6. mudlark

    mudlark nearly half a clue

    Cheers Ronald, I'll have a go at that tomorrow or friday.

  7. Cesare

    Cesare pfm Member

    Sounds interesting - i should have a go as i've got a spare pi sat on the desk. I was going to make an LED head for my enlarger with it, but that can wait ;-)
  8. sam_cat

    sam_cat ᶜ ᶦˢ ᶠᵒʳ ᶜᵒᵒᵏᶦᵉ

    The one issue I have is it doesn't play nicely with my Mdac... But works well as a media box behind the tv in the bedroom.
  9. mudlark

    mudlark nearly half a clue

    Does the pi work when plugged into a tv ((audio) hdmi>pass through psdif> dac ?
  10. lennyw

    lennyw Still throwing Eephus pitches

    I understand from friends that it does, though I don't know if they had to do any programming outside of XBMC.

    As mentioned before (though I could love to be told my info is out of date), I don't think the USB out works to send to DAC, so one has to use an HDMI to Optical converter to send digital to a DAC.
  11. mudlark

    mudlark nearly half a clue

    Unfortuneately my server motherboard has finally failed. New board/processor memory and power supply needed....

    I decided to try the pi with the XBMC installation. I've just configured it and it works using upnp to my Cyrus Streamer. Amazing that it actually works nevermind works well.

    The setup is wired ethernet, usb keyboard wireless mouse and usb HDD with music stored on it.

    Only a few easy settings required for XBMC.

    I'll disconnect the peripherals and see how it runs for a while.
  12. RichardH

    RichardH Bodging pleb

    I had a fiddle with mine yesterday, and have managed to get it running with Squeezelite with audio output from the 3.5mm jack. I have a USB DAC on the way, so I'll do some more adventuring once that has arrived. I made notes on what I did, so I'll post them up later.
  13. RichardH

    RichardH Bodging pleb

    OK, here's what I did.

    Step 1 - buy the bits
    Bought a cased Pi from CPC, plus a 5v wall wart supply that delivers 1A. Already had an HDMI cable (and monitor that has HDMI connection), and USB keyboard & mouse. Then bought an 8Gb SD card from Amazon.

    Step 2 - set up the operating system
    I followed the quick start instructions on the Raspberry Pi website. The PDF has A walkthrough of how to get the latest Raspian "Wheezy" (you don't need the soft float version, just the standard one), and then how to set the SD card up - dead easy using Image Writer (you need the binary, not the source.)

    Step 3 - it's alive!
    Insert the SD card that should now have the operating system on it, and power up the Pi.

    Step 4 - accessing the Pi
    Easiest thing to do initially is plug it into a monitor and have a keyboard attached, but if you don't want to do that, or want in future to connect to it remotely (from within your network) then you can connect via a protocol called SSH. To do this you need a program - PuTTY is free and easy to use in Windows. To connect you also need the IP address of the Pi. This will be assigned dynamically by default, so you'll either need to have keyboard etc connected to discover the IP or search your network for the Pi. See For more info see Raspberry Pi SSH Login without Monitor for how to do this, and how to set a static IP address (though take note of the comment - "cd /etc/networks should be cd /etc/network").

    Step 5 - configure for Squeezelite
    Now you need to get Squeezelite installed. This page should tell you all you need. You can ignore the first step ("run the config tool") as this is already done. I skipped the optional steps (changing host name and wifi).

    I have still to receive the USB DAC, so for the moment I am using the output from the 3.5mm jack, and it's working a treat. I am using the free Android app "Squeezer" to control it.
  14. lennyw

    lennyw Still throwing Eephus pitches

    The 3.5mm jack has pretty ropey sq imho, fine for tv/movies, but I wouldn't want to use it as a serious music source. As mentioned above, you may be disappointed by the USB DAC -- it won't work (or at least, every post I've so far read has said that it's not possible to get a USB DAC to work as the USB ports share the same *something* as the LAN). Do let us know if you can make it work though.
  15. RichardH

    RichardH Bodging pleb

    I've seen plenty of people mention using a USB DAC, including the page I linked to on configuring Squeezelite. Whether the DAC I've ordered will work is another matter... watch this space!
  16. RichardH

    RichardH Bodging pleb

    Well, the DAC arrived. Plugged it in, selected the correct soundcard output and bingo! All working.

    For reference, the DAC I bought was the HiFimeDIY Sabre USB DAC, which is a 96khz/24bit DAC that cost £26 (plus shipping - I chose the shipping from EU option at £6 odd - it arrived in approx 5 days, and obviously no worries about customs etc).

    Once plugged in, I ran
    squeezelite-armv6hf -l
    to get the list of sound devices. I then found the USB card listed, and so then ran squeezelite with the following parameters

    squeezelite-armv6hf -o sysdefault:CARD=DAC 
    ...I also edited the startup batch process to use the same options. Restarted the Pi, and away we go. Oh, I had to reset the sound level output as well using

    sudo alsamixer
    Not tested with any 24bit files as yet, but it all works with a random selection of standard files from my Squeezeserver (running on a ReadyNAS).

    One more interesting bit of info - I plugged the power supply in to a current/power measuring plug thingy, and it semes that the Pi draws about 5-6W when playing - not bad, eh? The PSU draws more when it's charging my phone.
  17. themystical

    themystical pfm Member

    Excellent work Richard. Look forward to your report on 24 bit files or does it need EDO ported to Squeezelite?
  18. RichardH

    RichardH Bodging pleb

    Squeezelite is already set up to work with 24bit files - see this megathread.
  19. kropo

    kropo pfm Member

    Has anyone tried to put usb hub and to that usb wifi dongle and usb dac? Somewhere people are saying that it's not working, but have you tried?

    Raspberry pi is interresting, but I'll need wifi and of course usb dac for that.

    I was thinking using this as airplay device.
  20. 337alant

    337alant Negatively Biased

    When I built my HTPC I was convinced that UBUNTU and XBMC had to be better than crappy windows so I persevered with it for a month or so but I found it very clunky in reality and I couldn’t get the USB driver to work with my M2Tech young DAC or the remote controls to work.
    I decided to install windows 7 and J river media just as a comparison, everything worked great and the USB driver and Gizmo remote worked perfectly. It sound's much better as well IMO and the user interface in windows is streets ahead IMO. So I will not be going back to linux I am afraid.


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