Raspberry Pi music player setup? - Page 2 - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #31 of 41 Old 04-04-2020, 04:12 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JimMeader View Post
This is my experience, bottom line I believe any RPI Streamer solution out to a stand alone DAC even the cheap ones is better than going thru an AVR. The AVR solution works and allows a simpler all in one solution with good sound and base management, all depends on what is most important to you and your equipment
I'm coming around to the conclusion that I need a separate DAC rather than using the built-in one on my Yamaha. I'm not sure yet I want to add more complexity and cables for an external DAC yet - I think I need to start small, with a RPi HAT first and discover the issues first.
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post #32 of 41 Old 04-04-2020, 04:14 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by PooperScooper View Post
I recently replaced my old Samsung Netbook "transport" with a Raspberry Pi 4 running Volumio. FLAC files come from a USB drive and digital output is done via USB to a USB DAC.
Sorry - does that mean an external DAC or an RPi HAT?
Edit: Sorry, I overlooked the "USB" part - so, external.

Last edited by Jaywalker1; 04-04-2020 at 04:35 AM.
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post #33 of 41 Old 04-04-2020, 11:30 AM
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the SMSL SU8 DAC is on sale $189

https://drop.com/buy/smsl-su-8-dac

Jim Meader

Audirvana on Win 10 PC, USB out to SMSL SU8 DAC, XLR out to Crown XLI 1500 amp, full range signal sent via RCA to 12 inch Klipsch sub, Audirvana accesses FLAC Music files on USB Drive
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post #34 of 41 Old 04-04-2020, 11:47 AM
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I don't know if this is too late, but I have some experience with RPi streamers in a revealing system.

Regarding HAT boards:
  • The HiFiBerry DAC+ Pro is an outstanding DAC for the $60 it costs. On an absolute scale, it is a good but not great DAC, better than many far more expensive ones of 10 years ago, but a little lacking in space and detail.
  • The HiFiBerry Digi+ Pro SPDIF output card is mediocre.
  • The Allo DigiOne SPDIF output card is very good to excellent on an absolute scale. The Signature version is said to be even better. One of those would be my recommendation if you have a free SPDIF input on your Yamaha.
With an RPi, you need a power supply. I found the iFi iPower for about $50 to be far better than one would expect. It really opens up the sound of the RPi3 with DigiOne card. I have not looked further.

If you decide on the Allo DigiOne, you can buy the whole thing pre-assembled by Allo.

Hope that helps.

P.S. I just remembered, I used the HiFiBerry DAC only before I got the iFi iPower. So maybe it's better with a better power supply than when I tried it.

Mike (Portland, Oregon)
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post #35 of 41 Old 04-06-2020, 06:06 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike in NC View Post
I don't know if this is too late, but I have some experience with RPi streamers in a revealing system.

Regarding HAT boards:
  • The HiFiBerry DAC+ Pro is an outstanding DAC for the $60 it costs. On an absolute scale, it is a good but not great DAC, better than many far more expensive ones of 10 years ago, but a little lacking in space and detail.
  • The HiFiBerry Digi+ Pro SPDIF output card is mediocre.
  • The Allo DigiOne SPDIF output card is very good to excellent on an absolute scale. The Signature version is said to be even better. One of those would be my recommendation if you have a free SPDIF input on your Yamaha.
With an RPi, you need a power supply. I found the iFi iPower for about $50 to be far better than one would expect. It really opens up the sound of the RPi3 with DigiOne card. I have not looked further.

If you decide on the Allo DigiOne, you can buy the whole thing pre-assembled by Allo.

Hope that helps.

P.S. I just remembered, I used the HiFiBerry DAC only before I got the iFi iPower. So maybe it's better with a better power supply than when I tried it.
It isn't too late. I diverted my first Raspberry Pi for use as a Pi-Hole and I'm now circling back to the music player.


With regard to the iFI power supply, I presume the Raspberry Pi uses "center positive" (whatever that means) that the iFI does?


What does "pre-assembled" mean with regard to the Allo? Does it require more than simply putting a HAT on the RPi?
Edit: I'm starting to see: https://www.allo.com/network-audio-player.html

Last edited by Jaywalker1; 04-06-2020 at 06:29 PM.
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post #36 of 41 Old 04-07-2020, 05:07 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cburbs View Post
Currently I have two Pis running PiCorePlayer with different dacs - Use LMS w/ Material Skin plugin for control.

Setup 1 - Main System
Board - Raspberry Pi 3 Model B Motherboard
Case - Flirc Raspberry Pi 2 and B+ Case
DAC - Hifime S2 USB and SPDIF DAC (Sabre ES9038q2m)
Power - iPower Low Noise DC Power Supply with International Travel Adapters by iFi Audio (5V)
OS - PiCorePlayer

Setup 2 - Outside Setup
Board - Raspberry Pi Model B+ (B PLUS) 512MB Computer Board
Case - HiFiBerry Steel case for HiFiBerry DAC+, black cover
DAC - HiFiBerry DAC+ - Pro
Power - Kootek 5V 2A Universal Micro USB Charger Adapter Power Supply for Raspberry Pi, Google Nexus 7, Nexus 10, External Battery Power Bank, Android Tablet
OS - PiCorePlayer



Also use this usb dac for my headphones - HiFime UAE23HD USB DAC (ES9018K2M+SA9023)

For me I seem to prefer the ESS Dacs in my setup.

Thanks for the details. I'm still struggling with terms - what's required in order to get music from bits and bytes to sound waves. This helps.
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post #37 of 41 Old 04-08-2020, 09:16 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jaywalker1 View Post
It isn't too late. I diverted my first Raspberry Pi for use as a Pi-Hole and I'm now circling back to the music player.


With regard to the iFI power supply, I presume the Raspberry Pi uses "center positive" (whatever that means) that the iFI does?


What does "pre-assembled" mean with regard to the Allo? Does it require more than simply putting a HAT on the RPi?
Edit: I'm starting to see: https://www.allo.com/network-audio-player.html
The iFi power supply comes with a bunch of adapters to fit different items. Included is one that adapts its output to miniUSB as used on the RPi3. If you are using an RPi4, I don't know.

A HAT card plugs into the RPi to give either digital or analog output. The case encloses both the RPi and the HAT card.

By pre-assembled, I meant this thing: https://www.allo.com/sparky/digione-player.html . I prefer the aluminum case, which includes internal shielding.

You also have to specify an operating system, which also provides player and other software. The OS I've got to work without a lot of fuss is Volumio. It has a quirk or two, but it's regularly updated and does the job. You will not need to attach a monitor and keyboard to configure Volumio, as it's designed for Web configuration; not true of all of the OS options.


That solution outputs digital, so you could feed it into your AVR or into an external DAC. For analog output, you would use a DAC HAT card instead of the digital-output one. I have not tried the Allo or other DAC cards (except the HiFiBerry).

However, be aware that a HAT card typically requires a special case for itself and the RPi, because the connector positions are not standardized. That's one advantage of pre-assembled; you automatically get the correct case.

Allo offers this as a pre-assembled analog-out solution: https://www.allo.com/sparky/katana-player.html I have never seen, never mind heard, one, but I'm including it as an example of what is available.

Hope that helps.

P.S. The iFi power supply made a surprising difference in my setup. If you have an RPi setup already but are using the stock power supply, the first thing I'd recommend is trying the iFi iPower. It is not terribly costly and might be all you need to get suitable performance.

Mike (Portland, Oregon)
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Last edited by Mike in NC; 04-08-2020 at 09:21 AM.
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post #38 of 41 Old 04-08-2020, 03:12 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike in NC View Post
The iFi power supply comes with a bunch of adapters to fit different items. Included is one that adapts its output to miniUSB as used on the RPi3. If you are using an RPi4, I don't know.

A HAT card plugs into the RPi to give either digital or analog output. The case encloses both the RPi and the HAT card.

By pre-assembled, I meant this thing: https://www.allo.com/sparky/digione-player.html . I prefer the aluminum case, which includes internal shielding.

You also have to specify an operating system, which also provides player and other software. The OS I've got to work without a lot of fuss is Volumio. It has a quirk or two, but it's regularly updated and does the job. You will not need to attach a monitor and keyboard to configure Volumio, as it's designed for Web configuration; not true of all of the OS options.


That solution outputs digital, so you could feed it into your AVR or into an external DAC. For analog output, you would use a DAC HAT card instead of the digital-output one. I have not tried the Allo or other DAC cards (except the HiFiBerry).

However, be aware that a HAT card typically requires a special case for itself and the RPi, because the connector positions are not standardized. That's one advantage of pre-assembled; you automatically get the correct case.

Allo offers this as a pre-assembled analog-out solution: https://www.allo.com/sparky/katana-player.html I have never seen, never mind heard, one, but I'm including it as an example of what is available.

Hope that helps.

P.S. The iFi power supply made a surprising difference in my setup. If you have an RPi setup already but are using the stock power supply, the first thing I'd recommend is trying the iFi iPower. It is not terribly costly and might be all you need to get suitable performance.
That helps a lot. You put in that post a lot of things I didn't know.



For instance, this, which I assume the board makers assume everyone understands - I did not:
Quote:
That solution outputs digital, so you could feed it into your AVR or into an external DAC. For analog output, you would use a DAC HAT card instead of the digital-output one. I have not tried the Allo or other DAC cards (except the HiFiBerry).

I have begun to understand the following two things, but not from reading the makers' newbie-intro pages:
Quote:
You also have to specify an operating system, which also provides player and other software. The OS I've got to work without a lot of fuss is Volumio. It has a quirk or two, but it's regularly updated and does the job. You will not need to attach a monitor and keyboard to configure Volumio, as it's designed for Web configuration; not true of all of the OS options.

That solution outputs digital, so you could feed it into your AVR or into an external DAC. For analog output, you would use a DAC HAT card instead of the digital-output one. I have not tried the Allo or other DAC cards (except the HiFiBerry).
I assumed I added audio-player programs on top of RPi Raspian, and absolutely did not know about the digital/analog output differences.



(While researching Allo and tried to determine why I needed a Roon Bridge; here's the newbie intro for Roon:
Quote:
“beginner’s guide” for Room: “With the advent of Roon 1.2, Roon Bridge 977 has made its appearance: a nifty piece of software allowing to you create audio endpoints with machines otherwise underpowered to run ‘full Roon’. Roon Bridge relies on RAAT 381 (Roon Advanced Audio Transport) – Roon’s own audio distribution technology that allows for stable streaming, zone linking and superior audio clocking.”
That description does not clarify. I'm glad AVSForum is here to interpret.)
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post #39 of 41 Old 04-08-2020, 03:43 PM
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@Jaywalker1 -

The simplest and most fundamental facts are usually missing from "introductions" to DIY or free software and hardware. True of audio, and true in other areas as well. That's the price you pay for "free"!

A few minor points that might help...

Volumio is working on including a Roon client ("endpoint") in their OS distributions. I'm not sure if that's done or not. Last I looked, it was in beta state, but since I don't use Roon, I'm not up to date on it.

Regarding online services such as Tidal and Qobuz, different player/control software have different ways of accessing them. I use Volumio as a DLNA client ("renderer"), controlled through the DLNA control point BubbleUPnP on an Android tablet. Bubble lets you access and browse Qobuz and Tidal similarly to how you'd access your local DLNA library. Volumio also offers a subscription service, MyVolumio, that lets you access the services through the Volumio Web interface. I prefer the DLNA interface, but that's just one person's preference. Both methods still require a subscription to T. or Q.

Have fun!

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post #40 of 41 Old 04-08-2020, 05:23 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Mike in NC View Post
The simplest and most fundamental facts are usually missing from "introductions" to DIY or free software and hardware. True of audio, and true in other areas as well. That's the price you pay for "free"!
That's certainly true.


One more question... My main goal is to play my own library, not stream anything, though I expect I'll want to do that later. My research indicates that having a USB drive in the delivery chain is convenient but sub-optimal. So - how do I get the bits and bytes into the player without USB?
Edit: disregard - network share.

Last edited by Jaywalker1; 04-08-2020 at 05:30 PM.
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post #41 of 41 Old 04-08-2020, 10:26 PM
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Originally Posted by Jaywalker1 View Post
So - how do I get the bits and bytes into the player without USB?
Edit: disregard - network share.
Yes, a network share is one way. DLNA is another; it's a bit more complex, but some of the software is quite good (I use MinimServer and BubbleUPnP).

The third way I can think of is Roon.

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