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  1. #1
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    PiCorePlayer and WMA lossless

    So, I have a newish installation of PcP in place, no probs. Until now.

    I have a bunch of older rips in WMA lossless format which I apparently didn't play much. At least until today, when I tried to play Bare Trees, an early Fleetwood Mac recording. LMS reported that it was unable to play the unsupported format, which was WMA lossless.

    I find this weird, and a reason to dislike this installation. What gives?

    Ron
    LMS on a dedicated server (PiCorePlayer)
    Transporter (Ethernet) - main listen ining, Onkyo receiver, Paradigm speakers
    Touch (WiFi) - home theater 5.1, Sony receiver, Energy speakers
    Boom 1 (WiFi) - work-space
    Boom 2 (WiFi) - various (deck, garage, etc.)
    Radio (WiFi) - home office
    Control - Squeeze Control (Android mobile), 2 Controllers (seldom used), Squeeze Remote (on Surface Pro 4)
    Touch x 1 - spare
    UE Radio x 1 - spare
    Boom x 1 - spare
    Controller x 1 - Spare

  2. #2
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    Try adding the PlayWMA plugin.
    This will make LMS perform transcoding of the WMA content.
    Paul Webster
    Author of "Now Playing" plugins covering Radio France (FIP etc), PlanetRadio (Bauer - Kiss, Absolute, Scala, JazzFM etc), KCRW, ABC Australia and CBC/Radio-Canada
    and, via the extra "Radio Now Playing" plugin lots more - see https://forums.slimdevices.com/showt...Playing-plugin

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by RonM View Post
    I find this weird, and a reason to dislike this installation. What gives?
    IIRC Boom & Transporter player cannot play WMA lossless natively and so to play WMA lossless would need transcoding. I think (not sure) Touch and Radio have native WMA lossless decoding. So you may be having the problem depending on which player you are using.

    LMS on Windows had WMA transcoding as standard because MS libraries were available. If you had no problems previously maybe you also had a Windows LMS server.

    If you install PlayWMA you'll also need to install ffmpeg (available in PCP repository - the application not the ffmpeg squeezelite libraries ) as it is used to do the WMA to Flac transcoding

    Longer term, it may be better to batch convert the WMA Lossless file to Flac - there'll be no loss in Audio and will save transcoding each time.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by bpa View Post
    Longer term, it may be better to batch convert the WMA Lossless file to Flac - there'll be no loss in Audio and will save transcoding each time.
    I cannot agree moore, WMA is pretty much a dead format. And because we're talking about lossless audio here, the best way is to transcode to another lossless format. Of course the OP might have specific reasons to use WMA lossless that we are not aware of.
    Living Room: RPI2+HifiBerry DAC+ Pro & piCorePlayer
    Attic: RPI2+HifiBerry DAC+ RCA & piCorePlayer
    Other rooms: 6x SB Radio
    LMS: Version 8.3.0 on Xubuntu 22.04LTS

  5. #5
    Senior Member ralphy's Avatar
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    If you're running a 32bit version of picoreplayer, you can install the generic ffmpeg armhf build of squeezelite using the squeezelite custom feature in pcp.

    That build supports wma, wmapro and wmalossless natively.
    Ralphy

    1-Touch, 5-Classics, 3-Booms, 2-UE Radio
    Squeezebox client builds donations always appreciated.

  6. #6
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    I have no particular attachment to WMA, it just happened to be the most convenient lossless format to rip to when I began my Squeezebox journey, with a Duet. I was using Windows Media Player as the rip mechanism. I did pretty much all my existing CDs this way, so there are quite a bunch of WMA lossless albums in my archive. Many. And hard to sort by format. All my wma files are lossless.

    I had been using a Windows LMS installation running on a dedicated server, and none of these rips represented any problem, on those occasions I played them. It's only after transitioning to a PiCorePlayer as the server that I encountered the problem.

    Most lossless albums I now play are in flac, converted from CDs that were purchased after my initial archive creation or obtained in other ways, or downloaded via services like Bandcamp. But I will be wanting to play some of those older albums from time to time (Bare Trees being one of those, my favorite Fleetwood Mac album, from before the Buckingham/Nicks era).

    It will be tedious to do a conversion. I have many thousands of albums all sorted by album artist. I have three separate archives; one is the master archive, the first destination for acquisitions and the one that gets backed up. The second is the library used by LMS (in theory an exact copy of the master archive, but there are exceptions) and a lossy library for portable players (which is unaffected by the wma issue).

    I don't know of a way to do a batch conversion that will retain this structure, finding and converting wmas to flac, preserving artwork, saving in the right location and deleting the old wma copy. And it would be very tedious to have to do it twice. Or to do it once and then copy the entire archive over the network to the LMS library. It would seem that I might have to do it manually, one album at a time, tidy things up and then copy to the LMS library and tidy up there. and since the wma is the only copy I have aside from the CDs in the storage boxes, I'd probably want to keep the wma copy somewhere as a hedge, at least for a while.

    Re Ralphy's suggestion about Squeezelite, I believe Squeezelite is a player and I'm using the pcp only as a server. Correct me if I'm wrong.

    Re Paul's suggestion about PlayWMA and ffmpeg, I would like to do that but am not at all sure how to go about it. I don't often play these files, so transcoding would seem to be the way to go, I can't see a downside. I see a lot of downside to converting them all to flac.

    More advice please.

    Ron
    Last edited by RonM; 2022-05-03 at 18:22.
    LMS on a dedicated server (PiCorePlayer)
    Transporter (Ethernet) - main listen ining, Onkyo receiver, Paradigm speakers
    Touch (WiFi) - home theater 5.1, Sony receiver, Energy speakers
    Boom 1 (WiFi) - work-space
    Boom 2 (WiFi) - various (deck, garage, etc.)
    Radio (WiFi) - home office
    Control - Squeeze Control (Android mobile), 2 Controllers (seldom used), Squeeze Remote (on Surface Pro 4)
    Touch x 1 - spare
    UE Radio x 1 - spare
    Boom x 1 - spare
    Controller x 1 - Spare

  7. #7
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    dbpoweramp Batch Converter could do all the needed conversions maintaining file/directory structure, metadata, and artwork. Once setup properly, itĺs just a couple of mouse clicks then let it run.
    Home: Pi4B-8GB/pCP8.x/4TB>LMS 8.2.x>Transporter, Touch, Boom, Radio (all ethernet)
    Cottage: rPi4B-4GB/pCP8.x/4TB>LMS 8.2.x>Touch>Benchmark DAC I, Boom, Radio w/Battery (Radio WIFI)
    Office: Win10(64)>foobar2000
    The Wild: rPi3B+/pCP7.x/4TB>LMS 8.1.x>hifiberry Dac+Pro (LMS & Squeezelite)
    Controllers: iPhone11 & iPadAir3 (iPeng), CONTROLLER, Material Skin, or SqueezePlay 7.8 on Win10(64)
    Files: Ripping: dBpoweramp > FLAC; Post-rip: mp3tag, PerfectTunes, TuneFusion; Streaming: Spotify

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by RonM View Post
    ....
    Re Paul's suggestion about PlayWMA and ffmpeg, I would like to do that but am not at all sure how to go about it. I don't often play these files, so transcoding would seem to be the way to go, I can't see a downside. I see a lot of downside to converting them all to flac.

    More advice please.

    Ron
    PlayWMA is a plugin for LMS, available on the Plugins tab under Settings. It depends on ffmpeg, which appears to be available for piCorePlayer in the pCP Extensions menu. I think you need to switch to "Official piCore Repository" (NOT piCorePLayer main or mirror repository!) on the Available extensions tab. It appears in the dropdown list as ffmpeg.tcz. I think you should install ffmpeg before installing the plugin.

    Wait a few hours to see if anyone else corrects what I've said! I have no experience with this plugin, and certainly cannot help with any configuration issues. I don't think you would need to install the dev version of ffmpeg, but others will certainly know more about that than I do.
    Usually running latest beta LMS nightly on Raspberry Pi OS with virtual players (Squeezelite and Airplay bridge). Occasionally using SB Radio, Boom or Classic.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by garym View Post
    dbpoweramp Batch Converter could do all the needed conversions maintaining file/directory structure, metadata, and artwork. Once setup properly, it’s just a couple of mouse clicks then let it run.
    I've used dBp Batch Converter quite a lot, but perhaps haven't explored all the possibilities. I'd never seen a way to select only files of a certain type, but I see now that I can use the Include function.

    I also see that there is an option in the DSP dialog to delete the source file. So if the conversion was set to put the converted file in the source folder and the source file was deleted, this would have the desired effect.

    The steps would be to select all folders in the music library, set include to only wma files, and once all that including was done set the target location as the source folder and set delete source file in the DSP dialogue. I don't think I'd have to set "folder.jpg preserve" as the artwork file(s) would still be there in the folder and presumably the embedded album covers would be retained. And since these are all 16/44 files I wouldn't have to worry about bit depth or resampling.

    I'd definitely want to try this on a sample before doing it for all the hundreds of wma albums!

    I could do it twice, once for the main archive, and then for the actual library that LMS uses. The latter would be working across the wired network, and might be a slower process. I suppose I could just do the LMS library, and leave the original files in the main archive. There won't be any new wma albums added. Downside would be that I'd have to do it again if I ever had to replace the LMS library (e.g. a failed hard drive).

    Is all that right? Am I missing anything? Is there any risk here? Is it right to have enough confidence in dBp to not fear faulty conversion and have no remaining source file to use to fix things? I'd do one library at a time, so after the first would still have the other as a back-up, but I'm not going to be checking each of those converted files.

    R.
    Last edited by RonM; 2022-05-05 at 19:46.
    LMS on a dedicated server (PiCorePlayer)
    Transporter (Ethernet) - main listen ining, Onkyo receiver, Paradigm speakers
    Touch (WiFi) - home theater 5.1, Sony receiver, Energy speakers
    Boom 1 (WiFi) - work-space
    Boom 2 (WiFi) - various (deck, garage, etc.)
    Radio (WiFi) - home office
    Control - Squeeze Control (Android mobile), 2 Controllers (seldom used), Squeeze Remote (on Surface Pro 4)
    Touch x 1 - spare
    UE Radio x 1 - spare
    Boom x 1 - spare
    Controller x 1 - Spare

  10. #10
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    Yes. That’s a good plan. Add one thing. After converting the first library, then “convert” this entire library to the ‘codec’ TEST CONVERSION. This will tell you if any files are corrupted. Note it is a bit confusing. If there are no errors, the output of TEST CONVERSION is nothing.
    Home: Pi4B-8GB/pCP8.x/4TB>LMS 8.2.x>Transporter, Touch, Boom, Radio (all ethernet)
    Cottage: rPi4B-4GB/pCP8.x/4TB>LMS 8.2.x>Touch>Benchmark DAC I, Boom, Radio w/Battery (Radio WIFI)
    Office: Win10(64)>foobar2000
    The Wild: rPi3B+/pCP7.x/4TB>LMS 8.1.x>hifiberry Dac+Pro (LMS & Squeezelite)
    Controllers: iPhone11 & iPadAir3 (iPeng), CONTROLLER, Material Skin, or SqueezePlay 7.8 on Win10(64)
    Files: Ripping: dBpoweramp > FLAC; Post-rip: mp3tag, PerfectTunes, TuneFusion; Streaming: Spotify

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