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  1. #1
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    Touch-Clone using Pi - Speakers?

    Hi there,

    I built a basic Squeezebox Touch clone using a leftover Raspberry Pi 3B+ and the official Raspi 7" touch display in a SmartiPi 2 case. OS is piCore, and it all works a treat. I don't have any good means of sound output yet (also no GPIO board like HifiBerry DAC+). What I'd like to do:
    1) use the player in the bedroom for music, obviously
    2) use the unit for an alarm clock

    Especially for the latter use case it's not so great to need to plug it into some stereo (which I don't have in the bedroom anyway) that needs to be turned on all the time. So I hope I can manage with a (cheapish) speaker set to create a (somewhat) portable/selfsufficient setup, but I have yet to come across a good combo and would like to hear some expereince in case someone else tried the same.

    What I've tried:
    1) getting a cheap 6W soundbar for starters, power and output goes over USB. I also set the output to "USB" in that piCore web interface.
    Result: no sound at all when connected to the Pi. Maybe the power doesn't suffice, although it was detected by the Pi as device "CD002" or something and I was able to crank it up in the ALSA Mixer, although with no effect. So I returned the soundbar.
    2) getting a cheapish set of 6W "Creative Pebbles", with power over USB and signal over 3.5 mm standard headphone jack.
    Result: It works, even with the USB plugged into the Pi, but it hums and whistles - I suppose that's a byproduct of the Pi's audio connector and to be expected. Not great at night.
    3) using my portable Bluetooth speaker (JBL Flip 3). I didn't get that to work at first, until I found out that it isn't used as an output device, but as an additional player instance. Which left me flabberghasted. But oh well. I could get a cheap Bluetooth speaker, keep it permanently on a power cord and synch the player that's created for it with the Touch clone (or switch the Touch clone to control the "speaker player" directly). But I don't like the constantly running Bluetooth connection, also, having a Touch that doesn't control itself feels a little like waste.

    I now hope that either someone managed to get option 1 running without background noises or that someone can confirm that a GPIO's audio jack won't produce the same background hum so I can resort to option 2.

  2. #2
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    Touch-Clone using Pi - Speakers?

    I also have a touch, but it is not connected to an output.

    As an alarm clock, I use a zipp2 mini airplay speaker and control it from the LMS. No additional device needed here. I use the jivelite display as a display for the clock or for the VA meter - for this I sync the jivelite player to the one I want to see the display. Works nicely.

    So I would probably use the Squeezebox Touch clone as follows:

    1) use an airplay speaker for the actual player and alarm clock (no display)
    2) use the Squeezebox Touch clone and sync it to the alarm clock, so you can control them together.

    Cheers,

    Rainer




    > On 15 Mar 2021, at 13:48, TheCoyote <TheCoyote.9yjzdb (AT) no-mx (DOT) forums.slimdevices.com> wrote:
    >
    >
    > Hi there,
    >
    > I built a basic Squeezebox Touch clone using a leftover Raspberry Pi 3B+
    > and the official Raspi 7" touch display in a SmartiPi 2 case. OS is
    > piCore, and it all works a treat. I don't have any good means of sound
    > output yet (also no GPIO board like HifiBerry DAC+). What I'd like to
    > do:
    > 1) use the player in the bedroom for music, obviously
    > 2) use the unit for an alarm clock
    >
    > Especially for the latter use case it's not so great to need to plug it
    > into some stereo (which I don't have in the bedroom anyway) that needs
    > to be turned on all the time. So I hope I can manage with a (cheapish)
    > speaker set to create a (somewhat) portable/selfsufficient setup, but I
    > have yet to come across a good combo and would like to hear some
    > expereince in case someone else tried the same.
    >
    > What I've tried:
    > 1) getting a cheap 6W soundbar for starters, power and output goes over
    > USB. I also set the output to "USB" in that piCore web interface.
    > Result: no sound at all when connected to the Pi. Maybe the power
    > doesn't suffice, although it was detected by the Pi as device "CD002" or
    > something and I was able to crank it up in the ALSA Mixer, although with
    > no effect. So I returned the soundbar.
    > 2) getting a cheapish set of 6W "Creative Pebbles", with power over USB
    > and signal over 3.5 mm standard headphone jack.
    > Result: It works, even with the USB plugged into the Pi, but it hums and
    > whistles - I suppose that's a byproduct of the Pi's audio connector and
    > to be expected. Not great at night.
    > 3) using my portable Bluetooth speaker (JBL Flip 3). I didn't get that
    > to work at first, until I found out that it isn't used as an output
    > device, but as an additional player instance. Which left me
    > flabberghasted. But oh well. I could get a cheap Bluetooth speaker, keep
    > it permanently on a power cord and synch the player that's created for
    > it with the Touch clone (or switch the Touch clone to control the
    > "speaker player" directly). But I don't like the constantly running
    > Bluetooth connection, also, having a Touch that doesn't control itself
    > feels a little like waste.
    >
    > I now hope that either someone managed to get option 1 running without
    > background noises or that someone can confirm that a GPIO's audio jack
    > won't produce the same background hum so I can resort to option 2.
    >
    >
    > ------------------------------------------------------------------------
    > TheCoyote's Profile: http://forums.slimdevices.com/member.php?userid=68172
    > View this thread: http://forums.slimdevices.com/showthread.php?t=114154
    >
    >

  3. #3
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    Hello Rainer,

    thanks for the input. The Zipp speaker appears to be a Bluetooth speaker, doesn't it? So that appears to resemble my option 3.

    May I ask how your speaker as alarm clock works in combination with the "headless" LMS? To be more exact: how do you turn off a ringing alarm?

  4. #4
    Senior Member
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    Cheshire, UK
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheCoyote View Post
    Hello Rainer,

    thanks for the input. The Zipp speaker appears to be a Bluetooth speaker, doesn't it? So that appears to resemble my option 3.

    May I ask how your speaker as alarm clock works in combination with the "headless" LMS? To be more exact: how do you turn off a ringing alarm?
    It is also AirPlay - if you install Phillipe's AirPlay bridge it becomes a fully fledged SB player
    VB2.4 storage QNAP TS419p (NFS)
    Living Room Joggler & Pi4/Khadas -> Onkyo TXNR686 -> Celestion F20s
    Office Joggler & Pi3 -> Denon RCD N8 -> Celestion F10s
    Dining Room SB Boom
    Kitchen UE Radio (upgraded to SB Radio)
    Bedroom (Bedside) Pi Zero+DAC ->ToppingTP21 ->AKG Headphones
    Bedroom (TV) & Bathroom SB Touch ->Denon AVR ->Mordaunt Short M10s + Kef ceiling speakers
    Guest Room Joggler > Topping Amp -> Wharfedale Modus Cubes
    Everything controlled by iPeng & Material on iOS

  5. #5
    Senior Member jimbobvfr400's Avatar
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    Aug 2012
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    Harrogate, UK
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    628
    You could also do the same with a Chromecast enabled speaker using the similar castbridge plugin. For me a Chromecast speaker makes sense as I use Android mobiles.

    Don't forget also that any Google Assistant speaker also functions for casting and can be used as a squeezebox.

  6. #6
    Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheCoyote View Post
    1) use the player in the bedroom for music, obviously
    2) use the unit for an alarm clock

    Especially for the latter use case it's not so great to need to plug it into some stereo (which I don't have in the bedroom anyway) that needs to be turned on all the time. So I hope I can manage with a (cheapish) speaker set to create a (somewhat) portable/selfsufficient setup, but I have yet to come across a good combo and would like to hear some expereince in case someone else tried the same.
    Have you thought about a HifiBerry ZeroAmp and some simple passive speakers?

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by jeroen2 View Post
    Have you thought about a HifiBerry ZeroAmp and some simple passive speakers?
    Sort of. I got some passive speakers and plugged them into the audio jack, which resulted in a constant hum. If a HifiBerry board eases that, this would be exactly what I'm looking for. Do you have any experience with that?

  8. #8
    Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheCoyote View Post
    Sort of. I got some passive speakers and plugged them into the audio jack, which resulted in a constant hum. If a HifiBerry board eases that, this would be exactly what I'm looking for. Do you have any experience with that?
    I use the HifiBerry ZeroAmp with some old speakers from a Mac Cube. The first picture on this post here.

    It's different from the audio jack, since it's actually an amplifier. Sound quality seems pretty good for such a small system.

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