AVS Forum banner
1 - 14 of 14 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
838 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Guys, I'm looking build (or buy, possibly) a very low power PC to stream music to my AVR from my server. I would like to use SPDIF instead of analog as I would prefer to do the D/A conversion with my AVR (picking up a Onkyo 1007 or 3007 soon) DACs.


Before someone suggests a squeezbox or something similar, I have a couple of reasons to go with a PC; I am setting up an ipod touch to control all my AV equipment and I plan on using either XBMC or VLC, both of which have ipod apps. So far I have been playing with VLC a bit and like how it works. Ideas here?


Basically I want to get fuctionality similar to the squeezbox with two way feedback (seeing what is playing and searching for music on the remote).


I also just like having the versatility of the PC versus a single purpose device.


I've thought about using the onkyo's network abilities for this, but I really don't want to have to use a monitor to play music.


That being said, here is what I am looking at currently:


MB - ZOTAC IONITX-B-E


Case - HEC or M350


Memory - A-Data


HDD - WD Blue


The above (using the HEC case) would be around $270. I already have a spare XPPro license, so I am not adding that in.


I would love to hear opinions or alternative ideas. I've been trying to find a cheaper MB with SPDIF but haven't had much luck (I would like to stick with Atom/Ion CPU for low power consumption)


I don't care about video as I won't be streaming any video with this. I don't know if using HDMI for audio would make sense here for my use...?


Thanks in advance!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
701 Posts
You don't really need Ion for music. I've got a Pentium 3 1.0ghz with 512mb of ram and a Xonar DS for my stereo and it does perfectly. A straight Atom 230 or 410 would be more than enough power for a music only system. The foxconn 45CS in intel atom 230 and has an SPDIF header on the motherboard just above the PCI slot and is only $58, a spdif header runs about $8 and will handle everything you need with ease, it's what I'll be doing when my P3 system bites the dust.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
838 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·

Quote:
Originally Posted by ArtosDracon /forum/post/18194005


You don't really need Ion for music. I've got a Pentium 3 1.0ghz with 512mb of ram and a Xonar DS for my stereo and it does perfectly. A straight Atom 230 or 410 would be more than enough power for a music only system. The foxconn 45CS in intel atom 230 and has an SPDIF header on the motherboard just above the PCI slot and is only $58, a spdif header runs about $8 and will handle everything you need with ease, it's what I'll be doing when my P3 system bites the dust.

I was thinking about the header for SPDIF audio, but I was having a hard time searching based on that 'feature'.


This would fit the bill pretty well....


Do you have a link or somewhere you've bought the SPDIF header, searching doesn't bring up much.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
838 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·

Quote:
Originally Posted by hirent /forum/post/18194078


Why not get a netbook?

Cheap, low power, small size and portable to boot.

I've thought about this as well, but I already have an Eee PC and I would be permanently installing this into my rack so I wouldn't want to move it around.


I could be mistaken, but I haven't seen any netbooks with SPDIF audio....
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
838 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Well, after saying I couldn't find anything, I found something



I assume this would work even though it isn't specifically made by Foxconn:




I found it here on Amazon.


I guess, worst case I would just have to change the pinout to match the MB header.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
838 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·

·
Registered
Joined
·
98 Posts
I know you said you didn't want something like squeezbox but have you considered an Apple Airport Express?


It does just what you are asking for with zero cables to mess with. It supports optical output for music and is controlled with the itouch with Apple remote.


I use mine all the time. It is actually hooked up right now in the living room via 1/8" optical adapter. Nothing workes like apple remote. Its instant and brings up albume art and a super fast playlist. Plus its only $100 bucks.


And when you travel, you can bring it with you to setup your own wireless network with the wired hotel ethernet. You can also use it as a printer server and a wireless range extender.


If you have itunes, you can download Apple remote app and try it out with your computer. Its free. When you are in itunes, the airport express pops up as a set of speakers that you can share your library with. You can also control the music from the computer or see what is playing from the server library. It has all worked pretty flawless with me.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
838 Posts
Discussion Starter · #10 ·
You know, I used to have one of these when I traveled for work. I just used it to create my own wifi for my PC. This was before most hotels had wifi.


Unfourtunately I left it in a room, and when I called the hotel said there was nothing left in the room



My first question would be, do I have to use itunes with it?




edit: I did some searching and it looks like I would have to use itunes. I don't think it would be worth having to convert my entire collection of mp3 (100+ gb) into itunes. I'm not the biggest fan of apple as I feel they restrict their products to much.

I finally had to give in and get an ipod touch because I couldn't find anything else that would work as remote like it does, along with a huge amount of 3rd party apps... I will be hearing about it from my apple loving friends until I'm dead



If I could just use itunes to play my mp3s without conversion, I probably would look harder at this option.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
98 Posts
Out of the box, yes only from itunes. But with Airfoil, you can do any program from your computer. I haven't looked into other programs other then itunes because it just works so well for music. Especially for the iphone interface with apple remote.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
838 Posts
Discussion Starter · #12 ·
So if I'm using windows I can run airfoil and use itunes without conversion?


I'll have to do some googling...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
98 Posts
I ran airfoil for a few hours when I first got it. It takes audio from a program and hijacks the stream and sends it to the airfoil. It worked well. It didn't work well for video at all though. But not any issue with music though.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
701 Posts

Quote:
Originally Posted by Beemer533 /forum/post/18194500


Well, after saying I couldn't find anything, I found something



I assume this would work even though it isn't specifically made by Foxconn:




I found it here on Amazon.


I guess, worst case I would just have to change the pinout to match the MB header.

SPDIF pinout is standardized, the only general variation is in the VCC+ voltage provided for the optical port on the headers between 3.3 and 5 volts, either way though, the coaxial would work.
 
1 - 14 of 14 Posts
Top