View Full Version : Newbie: Questions on integration with Amarok and Multichannel (it might work)

2006-02-10, 13:51
Hello folks,

I was introduced to the idea of the squeezebox at my local audiophile meeting (yes, we exist even in the wilds of Montana :) ) I was enthralled by the specs and the fact that it is opensource and linux based is, just wow. Perfect.

I've always wanted a good wireless solution for my linux box (an amd 64 running sourcemage gnu/linux) and this looks awesome. I'd like to run the squeezebox directly into a multiple Cary Audio 300se mono blocks (15 watt 300B SET amps) and then into a pair of Focal Electra 1027 be speakers (drool). I will be streaming FLAC mostly, via a wireless SB3.

I've been reading over the forums all morning and i don't see the answers to the questions i have below. If they are around, just link me with my assumed gratitude :)

I have two things that i'd like to be able to do that the SB 3 is not initially designed for. I am willing to put in the programming work to get these things accomplished, but i wanted to run it by you all to see if these would even be possible to do. I can think of a number of ways to accomplish each one and wanted some advice before i waste my precious brain energy thinking about these.

1) Use Amarok instead of slimserver.

(a) I could just output amarok to a icecast stream and set the SB3 to listen to it. However, i don't think i can stream flac. The bitrate isn't an issue, as this will all be local, but i don't think icecast supports flac, only ogg. There is a way to wrap flac in an ogg envelope. That might work..?

(b) Since the slimserver is opensource, i could just write a perl plug-in for Amarok to send it's stream to the SL3. I don't know perl yet, but i'm planning on it and this would give me a project to do that i could then give back to the community.

(c) Write a driver for alsa that passes the stream to the SB 3 and controls the volume too. However, that would not pass any of the track information. The prospect makes my head hurt, and i think the perl would be far easier.

(d) Since i use gstreamer all over the place, i might be able to write a LDSPA plugin to do what the aforementioned perl script would do. That way i could use the SB 3 with anything that can use gstreamer.

(How do you stream the audio from a dvd to SB 3 anyway?)

edit: solvedUsing icecast/ices i can stream anything that hits the soundcard. Therefore i can stream *anything* that hits the soundcard to the squeezebox.

2. Multichannel movies and music

This is the hard one. I want to build a quad system with a subwoofer (so really 5 channels). I say "quad" because i'd rather use a phantom center then an actual center channel. So, i would need 2 or 3 SL 3s to get the job done.

(a) I asked tech support if i could just stream the front+left to one Sl 3 and the rear_left + rear_right to another via icecast, but he said that the buffering would screw up the timeing. So, that's out, and again no flac.

(b) Using gstreamer, send each set of channels to the appropreate SL 3. Since gstreamer has perl hooks, this should be doable, right?

(c) If i *have* to i'll add a pre/pro in front of the amps and use the digital outs of the SL3, but i'd rather not and keep the signal simplicity of (a) or (b). edit: Another major drawback to this option is that the pre-pro has to understand what i am sending in the digital stream. If i want to use ambiosonic prosessing for instance, i could only do that with a pre/pro that understood it (good luck). With opition (b), the best one, i can send any format that my computer does. Also a pre-pro is one more piece of equipment to upgrade and is an extra expense.

Is there a chatroom available for this form anwhere? (freenode?)

Any ideas on this stuff? Thanks all!