Cable Monkey

Simple and cheap entry into networked audio...

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I am a Roon user and I am aware how contentious that is as a separate subject. However a couple of really good things have emerged as a result of Roon, one of them being a Raspberry Pi OS called Ropieee. This is the concept of a guy called Harry ten Berge and was originally conceived as a very quick and simple way to get Roon working to (note to, not on) a small and lightweight end point based on a £35 Raspberry Pi. So how is it simple and cheap you ask? Well Harry is presently running a beta on RopieeeXL. This presently includes SharePort which is an AirPlay emulator and DNLA functionality meaning certain PC and Mac and mobile/table based streaming apps will see the device as a viable streaming destination. In its most basic form you simply need to load this OS onto a SD card, insert into the Pi, connect to the internet via Ethernet and leave it for 15 minutes to do its thing. Once complete it will be available for playback from Mac, DNLA and Roon sources into a USB equipped DAC. If you don’t have Ethernet at your hifi don’t despair. On the Pi 3B+’s it has WiFi built in. Configure it while connected to Ethernet, reboot and disconnect the Ethernet and it pops up on WiFi. I have two of them, one running regular Ropieee and the other now running the XL beta which is now very stable and runs sweetly over my (strong) WiFi network. 

https://www.ropieee.org/

https://community.roonlabs.com/t/ropieeexl-beta-testers-wanted/70481

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As a layman I don’t think going to Github has ever resulted in me coming away with a working device. Remember, simple is the name of the game because recent threads have shown that understanding is sorely lacking in this little backwater of the HiFi hobby!

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Remember, simple is the name of the game

I can't decide if your being patronising, condesending or just ..............an arse.

Let others decide what is "simple", the link is out there for people to ignore or use.

ronnie

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Someone got out of bed on the wrong side. Where did that come from?

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I’m sure many will prefer the relative ease of downloading and flashing a prebuilt image for an SD card, however it’s actually not so difficult for a lay-person with a bit of experience with the command line to cut and paste the instructions in the README file on github into a terminal and do the install suggested by @Man in a van

Using a Pi for computer audio is always a bit DIY - to a greater of lesser extent - and you don’t do DIY Audio as it’s the easy option, you do it as a project and maybe a bit of a learning experience.

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I don’t disagree, but the entire point is download, flash, boot up. Accessibility is what will give this legs. The DIY route encompasses the best and worst of this branch of the hobby. The challenge we might enjoy is the very thing putting a lot of people off who want to unbox, assemble and have playing in under an hour. I’m just trying to signpost people to a way to achieve that.

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Super Wammer

Ronnie gives lots of his time and knowledge on many threads and is also generous with sending or even giving spare Raspberry Pi units ot others so thjey can get a start. You gave some details that you expect other users to be able to get some benefit from .

Ronnie does the same as an alternative for other to use and you then pick hoiles in the method and advice given . As Ronnie says the link is there for others to try , if they want to . If they understand and can follw instructions then no issues , if they do not have the confidence or knowledge then they will ignore it. The advice was to assist not to hinder other users I suspect that anyone gving this type of advice and then having it suggested it was not a good things would be a little miffed.

Please also remember that Picoreplayer which is used by many for Pi flashing was until fairly recently only avaibale on GitHub downloads . It is not the medium that is an issue but the quality and enthusiasm of those that put the downloads on that matters.

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I'll just comment as a novice in this area, and I mean this to be constructive not critical. I haven't looked at the links but I find it hard to understand what the original post is saying.

One simple point to clear up would be whether this is a solution that requires a Roon subscription or not? I ask as the OP suggests it might be but the cost of this rather detracts from the idea of being 'cheap', for me anyway.

Without getting into details the other broader aspect worth clarifying is whether I'm right that this is primarily a solution for someone with music on some form of local storage rather than for someone only interested in internet streaming services?

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yes you need a paid for roon server running, it may or not be expensive depending on your point of view**. That does not detract from the software available for the Pi, github being the source or not, The Pi and various forms of software for it available for a bit of effort or small donation make a streamer option that can live with expensive stuff for a few quid a more than valid option. If you a bit PC geeky I guess it could become a part of both hobbies. 

** if you consider Roon to be expensive, then I would ask what image editing software, or office software you use. Office from Microsoft is expensive compared to open office, but I know which one I would rather use, and which one actually costs me less when time is included in the costing. Adobe is more expensive than the Gimp which is better to use. Decent software generally does not come cheap. 

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Hi Martin, your comments are taken in the way you intend. The device can be an endpoint for any DNLA streamer as well as Airplay. It can also use the Roon RAAT protocol. That means as an example you could use it to stream Spotify or JRiver or other AirPlay or DNLA aware apps to your USB DAC. But the way this device works you host these apps elsewhere such as a tablet or computer or the media paying software on a NAS. I am going to do some experimentation this weekend to suggest ways of using it, and also provide feedback to the author of the software if I find anything he might need to know.

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56 minutes ago, dudywoxer said:

** if you consider Roon to be expensive, then I would ask what image editing software, or office software you use. Office from Microsoft is expensive compared to open office, but I know which one I would rather use, and which one actually costs me less when time is included in the costing. Adobe is more expensive than the Gimp which is better to use. Decent software generally does not come cheap. 

As you asked, I use full office but it cost me about £10 due to my employment. For home use I would not pay for the likes of full Adobe.

Roon I'd put in a totally different category but I was simply making the point that for someone looking at a Raspberry Pi solution due to the hardware being cheap, the need for Roon which costs considerably more is a fairly major factor. I'm not saying it makes the combination irrelevant but for a novice seeing the thread title I think this is important.

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On 15/08/2019 at 20:29, Cable Monkey said:

Someone got out of bed on the wrong side. Where did that come from?

I get out of bed the same side every morning

On 15/08/2019 at 11:07, Cable Monkey said:

I am a Roon user and I am aware how contentious that is as a separate subject. However a couple of really good things have emerged as a result of Roon, one of them being a Raspberry Pi OS called Ropieee. This is the concept of a guy called Harry ten Berge and was originally conceived as a very quick and simple way to get Roon working to (note to, not on) a small and lightweight end point based on a £35 Raspberry Pi. So how is it simple and cheap you ask? Well Harry is presently running a beta on RopieeeXL. This presently includes SharePort which is an AirPlay emulator and DNLA functionality meaning certain PC and Mac and mobile/table based streaming apps will see the device as a viable streaming destination. In its most basic form you simply need to load this OS onto a SD card, insert into the Pi, connect to the internet via Ethernet and leave it for 15 minutes to do its thing. Once complete it will be available for playback from Mac, DNLA and Roon sources into a USB equipped DAC. If you don’t have Ethernet at your hifi don’t despair. On the Pi 3B+’s it has WiFi built in. Configure it while connected to Ethernet, reboot and disconnect the Ethernet and it pops up on WiFi. I have two of them, one running regular Ropieee and the other now running the XL beta which is now very stable and runs sweetly over my (strong) WiFi network. 

https://www.ropieee.org/

https://community.roonlabs.com/t/ropieeexl-beta-testers-wanted/70481

I thought to give this a go.

First off, this is a really helpful guide

https://codexwilkes.com/downloads/ropieee-guide-for-beginners.pdf

Complete install took about 30 mins on a rpi3b+ using an Ethernet connection and a monitor connected (this was to allow me to watch the verbose output, and helped, when trying to connect to the web page when the booting had finished.

It took about 10 mins for the boot up process to complete.

Configuring RoPieeeXL is not too difficult, a first timer should be able to work out which boxes to select, "try it and see " works, as well.

Tried the UPnP first and that worked without a hitch.

Paused play and then tried the Airplay (on an iPad)  ......no sound.

I returned to the BubbleUPnP and switched to Local Renderer (my phone).

Went back to Airplay and this time got music.

Maybe I did not wait long enough for the UPnP to drop the player when I paused play?

Paused the playback on Airplay and immediately switched to my phone and got UPnP with sound.

Paused play again and tried AirPlay, got the message "unable to connect to RoPieeeXL".

I left this screen and picked up the phone and selected "Local Renderer" again and the Airplay immediately began playback.

So a few things to sort out for the dev, unless this is designed behaviour.

I was able to play Spotify from the iPad, using Airplay, but not from an Android phone or tablet as it's not listed as a Spotify-Connect Device, This last fact is mentioned by the dev.

So, my thoughts on this this beta as it is.

On 15/08/2019 at 23:24, Cable Monkey said:

I don’t disagree, but the entire point is download, flash, boot up. Accessibility is what will give this legs. The DIY route encompasses the best and worst of this branch of the hobby. The challenge we might enjoy is the very thing putting a lot of people off who want to unbox, assemble and have playing in under an hour. I’m just trying to signpost people to a way to achieve that.

One needs to know a bit about how things work (or which boxes to tick) trial and error will get one through, though.

I might of course, be wrong about this, so stand to be contradicted.

There is a bit to configure before hand.

UPnP needs setting up on a NAS or computer, a suitable renderer on tablet or phone.

If you have Apple then things are a bit easier with Airplay.

regards

ronnie

Edit: Just noticed there is no shutdown button or link provided. I found the user and password using google.

Edited by Man in a van
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Moderator

Thanks for giving it a go Ronnie. 🙂 I think that behaviour is because you won’t necessarily be switching between playback methods too often but I’ll raise that with the dev. It is potentially an issue with any multi use device that takes exclusive control of the OS for high fidelity playback. It may simply be that a reboot needs to be specified between using different functionality but the web page does say ‘auto’ and that does suggest a reboot shouldn’t be required.

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25 minutes ago, Cable Monkey said:

t may simply be that a reboot needs to be specified between using different functionality but the web page does say ‘auto’ and that does suggest a reboot shouldn’t be required

I'm not sure.

Using Squeezelite there is a command line "-C 5"  which stops the program hogging the device if not used for a specific numder of seconds (5 in this example).

I don't know if this is the same with GmediaRenderer.

I have, in the past installed UPnP (GmediaRenderer) Spotify-Connect, Shairport and Squeezelite all on the same pi (using Raspbian) and Squeezelite was the only one that hogged the device after playing had ceased (hence the command line). I was able to switch from one to another without a problem.

I thought that "Auto" referred to the default output (card 0) which all this software utilises. Sometimes I have had to edit the settings for each one, or make USB the default card.

I see the dev uses Arch-linux of which I know nowt but would guess the behaviour is similar to Raspbian

ronnie

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