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General => Users => Topic started by: m3freak on January 31, 2011, 06:20:53 pm

Title: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: m3freak on January 31, 2011, 06:20:53 pm
I'm planning LinuxMCE awesomeness for my new home.  I'd like to setup whole home audio, but I'm not sure how to go about it.

At first I was going to run all the audio cables to the basement, hook them up to a multi-zone amp, and then hook the amp up to a MD (and a receiver to the MD, as well).  But, now I'm thinking that perhaps I should run every set of ceiling speakers to an individual MD in that room/location.

In my mind, option 1 is the easiest and simplest.  I have seen option 2 being recommended here.  If two really is the best way to go, which amps are you guys using?  And, WHY is option 2 better than 1?

Thanks in advance for any and all replies.
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: totallymaxed on January 31, 2011, 07:12:09 pm
I'm planning LinuxMCE awesomeness for my new home.  I'd like to setup whole home audio, but I'm not sure how to go about it.

At first I was going to run all the audio cables to the basement, hook them up to a multi-zone amp, and then hook the amp up to a MD (and a receiver to the MD, as well).  But, now I'm thinking that perhaps I should run every set of ceiling speakers to an individual MD in that room/location.

In my mind, option 1 is the easiest and simplest.  I have seen option 2 being recommended here.  If two really is the best way to go, which amps are you guys using?  And, WHY is option 2 better than 1?

Thanks in advance for any and all replies.

Either approach is possible. If you centralise all of your amplification you can then feed your amps with audio from device like Squeezeboxes or Squeezeslaves (soft versions of a Squeezebox...see the wiki). If you decentralise all of your Amplification into each room or zone and have local MD's or Squeezeboxes in those zones then you gain some flexibility (each room has its own sound source for example) but you have to find space for the equipment in each room or zone (and potentially the noise of the devices themselves if they are not passivley cooled).

Either approach is doable...and its possible to intermix the the approaches in a single installation too (just to confuse you!!)...some zones having centralised hardware and some in-room hardware.

All the best


Andrew
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: m3freak on February 03, 2011, 11:48:00 pm
Either approach is possible. If you centralise all of your amplification you can then feed your amps with audio from device like Squeezeboxes or Squeezeslaves (soft versions of a Squeezebox...see the wiki). If you decentralise all of your Amplification into each room or zone and have local MD's or Squeezeboxes in those zones then you gain some flexibility (each room has its own sound source for example) but you have to find space for the equipment in each room or zone (and potentially the noise of the devices themselves if they are not passivley cooled).

Flexibility is nice, but not at the expense of having to find an amp for every pair of ceiling speakers and then somewhere to install the things!  So, I'm going to stick with my "running all speaker wire to the basement" idea.  I lose some flexibility, but if I can get an amp with enough zones, at least I'd get some of that flexibility back.

Would I be able to control the MD connected to the amp/receiver from a different MD?  For example, if I'm in the family room and I want to play music in the living room, could I use the family room MD to tell the MD in the basement to play music in only the living room zone? From what I understand, I could with multiple sound cards (e.g. USB sound cards) connected to the MD in the basement.

Either approach is doable...and its possible to intermix the the approaches in a single installation too (just to confuse you!!)...some zones having centralised hardware and some in-room hardware.

This is good to know.  I can see this happening in my home.

All the best


Andrew
[/quote]
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: ggmce on February 04, 2011, 05:01:33 am
Good question, I am planning a similar setup and perhaps to further confuse (myself mostly) I was thinking that since I have home-runs of speaker wire going to my media closet (which will also house my Hybrid/core) I would need to send the audio out of each room's MD back to the media closet to be amplified there and then feed the ceiling speaker in that room. For example, if I'm in the master bedroom and I'm watching a movie, I could then have the audio going through the ceiling speakers, when I change to music, then I have that coming through the ceiling speakers.
I was looking at tri-amps for each zone, but a multi-room amp might be the better (and more economical) way to go. I'm just a bit fuzzy on where and how the audio signal is amplified...
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: posde on February 04, 2011, 08:41:00 am
m3freak,

each Orbiter (the control interface you see on the MD) can control each and every room in your installation.
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: coley on February 04, 2011, 01:37:22 pm
m3freak, if you are getting a multi-zone/multi-source amp and putting it in the basement where all your speaker runs terminate and having MDs in each room remember you will need to run line-level cables back to your basement for the MD sound card outputs.
Doing all your MDs like that also limits your sound to stereo - assuming you don't have an in-wall/in-ceiling 5.1 setup.

As Andrew says you can mix and match, for example, I've two extra usb sound cards in my core giving me two audio zones and then two remote squeezebox receivers giving me two further audio zones.

-Coley.
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: m3freak on February 04, 2011, 09:26:23 pm
m3freak, if you are getting a multi-zone/multi-source amp and putting it in the basement where all your speaker runs terminate and having MDs in each room remember you will need to run line-level cables back to your basement for the MD sound card outputs.
Doing all your MDs like that also limits your sound to stereo - assuming you don't have an in-wall/in-ceiling 5.1 setup.

I was planning on using the ceiling speakers only for music/radio (i.e. whole home).  This way I could use multiple sound cards in the core or MD, which would also be in the basement.  Basically, one MD could be dedicated to running the audio system.  In this scenario, stereo would be fine.

I know this partially goes back to the old way of doing things, but for listening to music/radio in various parts of the house, it should work out well.

As for individual bedrooms, the MDs there will be connected to PC speakers or televisions.  I'll most likely have ceiling speakers in the master bedroom (I already have speaker cable run to the master bath).  I may use an amp in the bedroom for the bedroom ceiling speakers, but the bathroom speakers are going to be connected to an amp and core or MD in the basement.
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: m3freak on February 04, 2011, 09:29:34 pm
m3freak,

each Orbiter (the control interface you see on the MD) can control each and every room in your installation.

Cool!  I wasn't sure if I could direct music to be played on a particular MD and sound card on that MD from all the other orbiters in the system.
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: gurumaia on February 07, 2011, 11:50:35 am
I'm also planning a LinuxMCE system for my new home, and also want to make a multi-room audio setup.
Now, my doubt is still in the hardware side of things. I'm on a limited budget as things tend to get very pricey here in Brazil. So adding squeezeboxes to each room would be a little much for me (they go for more than 600 USD over here).
I was thinking of using squeezeslave and multiple sound cards on the core to route audio to multiple rooms. And I'm also considering using in-ceiling speakers. In that case, I would also need an amp for each room or a multi-zone amp, correct? I'm thinking a multi-zone amp would be cheaper than 4 or 5 single-output amps (one for each room). I'm searching the web, but I don't know much about these types of equipment. Can anyone point me in the right direction as to what I would need for a setup like this?
Thanks!
EDIT: Sorry to hijack your thread, but it seemed to be a waste to create a new thread to talk about the same thing. If this causes trouble, I could create a new thread!
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: totallymaxed on February 07, 2011, 03:12:15 pm
I'm also planning a LinuxMCE system for my new home, and also want to make a multi-room audio setup.
Now, my doubt is still in the hardware side of things. I'm on a limited budget as things tend to get very pricey here in Brazil. So adding squeezeboxes to each room would be a little much for me (they go for more than 600 USD over here).
I was thinking of using squeezeslave and multiple sound cards on the core to route audio to multiple rooms. And I'm also considering using in-ceiling speakers. In that case, I would also need an amp for each room or a multi-zone amp, correct? I'm thinking a multi-zone amp would be cheaper than 4 or 5 single-output amps (one for each room). I'm searching the web, but I don't know much about these types of equipment. Can anyone point me in the right direction as to what I would need for a setup like this?
Thanks!
EDIT: Sorry to hijack your thread, but it seemed to be a waste to create a new thread to talk about the same thing. If this causes trouble, I could create a new thread!

Yes using Squeezeslaves with multiple low-cost sounds cards or usb sound cards would be the way to go for sure. You then need an amplifier for each room, or a multi-zone amp or possible in-ceiling speakers with integrated Amplifiers (this last option is neat but may restrict the quality and power of the audio system in each room).

Andrew
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: gurumaia on February 07, 2011, 03:30:29 pm
Yes using Squeezeslaves with multiple low-cost sounds cards or usb sound cards would be the way to go for sure. You then need an amplifier for each room, or a multi-zone amp or possible in-ceiling speakers with integrated Amplifiers (this last option is neat but may restrict the quality and power of the audio system in each room).

Andrew

Awesome! Thank you very much. Now, which is less expensive? I would think that a multi-zone would be cheaper since it's just one piece of equipment, but I'm coming to the realization that this might not be true. Problem is I can't find any regular amplifiers hence I've no idea how much it costs. Can anyone tell me which is a standard low-cost amp?

Thank you very much!
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: hari on February 07, 2011, 03:33:47 pm
NAD C315

very nice amp

br Hari
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: gurumaia on February 07, 2011, 03:47:38 pm
NAD C315

very nice amp

br Hari

Seems like a really good amp, but I wasn't able to find it for sale. Does anyone know the price range on this?
Also, are there simpler options than this? I don't think I'd need all those controls for now, so I could stick with some really basic amps (kinda like car amps!). I'm thinking of placing all of the amps in the core's room and running the wire to the speakers in each room, so I could easily exchange the amps later if I wanted a better sound. I also might get a fancier (like the NAD C315) amp for the living room and not so much for the other rooms.

Are there amps like this or am I on a dead end?

Thanks!
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: totallymaxed on February 07, 2011, 04:03:38 pm
Seems like a really good amp, but I wasn't able to find it for sale. Does anyone know the price range on this?
Also, are there simpler options than this? I don't think I'd need all those controls for now, so I could stick with some really basic amps (kinda like car amps!). I'm thinking of placing all of the amps in the core's room and running the wire to the speakers in each room, so I could easily exchange the amps later if I wanted a better sound. I also might get a fancier (like the NAD C315) amp for the living room and not so much for the other rooms.

Are there amps like this or am I on a dead end?

Thanks!

The NAD C315 UK retail price is about £160

Andrew
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: gurumaia on February 07, 2011, 05:11:08 pm
The NAD C315 UK retail price is about £160

Andrew

Thanks a lot for the help! I was hoping for something a little cheaper. I'll do some math and see if I can afford that!
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: tkmedia on February 07, 2011, 06:06:39 pm
To add 1 or more linuxmce audio zones using squeezeslave.

Amp
http://lmcecompatible.com/#ecwid:category=285320&mode=product&product=867437
Sound card
http://lmcecompatible.com/#ecwid:category=285320&mode=product&product=1143865

HTH


Tim
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: gurumaia on February 07, 2011, 06:29:52 pm
To add 1 or more linuxmce audio zones using squeezeslave.

Amp
http://lmcecompatible.com/#ecwid:category=285320&mode=product&product=867437
Sound card
http://lmcecompatible.com/#ecwid:category=285320&mode=product&product=1143865

HTH


Tim

Awesome! That's exactly what I was looking for! Thank you very much!
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: coley on February 07, 2011, 06:41:39 pm
gurumaia - what kind of budget are you looking at? for whole house audio as opposed to dedicated audio for TV or DVD. e.g. how much for soundcard, amp and speakers?

-Coley.
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: m3freak on February 07, 2011, 09:48:44 pm
EDIT: Sorry to hijack your thread, but it seemed to be a waste to create a new thread to talk about the same thing. If this causes trouble, I could create a new thread!

No worries, mate!  We're talking about the same thing, so it's hardly a hijacking.
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: gurumaia on February 07, 2011, 11:30:38 pm
gurumaia - what kind of budget are you looking at? for whole house audio as opposed to dedicated audio for TV or DVD. e.g. how much for soundcard, amp and speakers?

-Coley.

I'm note sure, I haven't set a limit yet because I'm not sure how much is enough for an 'okay' system, so I'm researching what's the minimum amount I need to spend to get 7 rooms of audio. From what I've seen, its sounding like this:

Sound cards:
The cheapest I've found was about 40 bucks a piece (with shipping to Brazil):
http://cgi.ebay.com/Startech-com-ICUSBAUDIO7-Virtual-7-1-USB-Sound-Card-/370287355739?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item5636d8a75b#ht_830wt_905

Amps:
Now it gets problematic because of shipping (and then there's the damn import rates of 60% for electronics in Brazil, for orders above $50 USD):
$89.95 + $79.95 shipping = $169.90. Add the 60% and you get $271

As far as speakers go, I haven't settled on a make or model yet (I've actually no idea which are okay and which are crap. I know the good ones, but they're out of my range). I'm thinking maybe $80 for each speaker? Plus some $25 for shipping, plus 60% that's $168.

Summing up that would be:
Sound cards: 7x40=$280
Amps: 7x271=$1897
Speakers: 14x168=$2352
Total: $4529

This amount is definitely higher than my budget, so I'll keep looking for cheaper options. If I can't find any, I'll have to cut down the number of rooms with audio. I don't mind adding rooms after a little while, but I would like to at least install the speakers before I move in, to avoid the hassle of installing them with us living there.

I also wouldn't mind to upgrade the system some time in the future, but I'm not sure if that's practical.

As far as a dedicated system for TV, DVD, BluRay etc, I'll definitely add that some time in the future, but that's something that is more easily done with us living there than it is to install the whole-home system.

No worries, mate!  We're talking about the same thing, so it's hardly a hijacking.

Awesome! Can you tell me what kind of equipment are you planning to use on your whole-home solution?

Thanks a lot everyone!
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: coley on February 08, 2011, 03:10:34 pm
Ouch! 60% duty.
do you have any other source for these items besides US? any countries you can import from without getting stung with that duty?

It sounds like you are best running the speaker cabling from each room back to a central point before you move in. Then you can add speakers and amps for each room as money allows.

-Coley
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: gurumaia on February 08, 2011, 05:25:58 pm
Ouch! 60% duty.
do you have any other source for these items besides US? any countries you can import from without getting stung with that duty?

It sounds like you are best running the speaker cabling from each room back to a central point before you move in. Then you can add speakers and amps for each room as money allows.

-Coley

Yeah, that 60% hurts. But it's worldwide (except form some other countries in South America, where I probably won't be able to find these items anyway). It is also kind of hit or miss. You're not always taxed. It seems they are a bit lazy so some packages get in without charging the duty, but you can't count on it.

That's something I've been thinking about too. I've never installed one of those in-ceiling speakers, but I guess if the cable is there, installing the speakers themselves is not that much of a hassle, right?

So now I need to find out what kind of cables I need to run. Does anyone have any tips?
Thanks!
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: bulek on February 09, 2011, 02:17:30 am
Waht about these :
http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=320504385451&ssPageName=STRK:MEWNX:IT (http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=320504385451&ssPageName=STRK:MEWNX:IT)

But beware, I'm not sure if they are the same.... And mybe active speakers....

HTH,
Bulek.
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: gurumaia on February 09, 2011, 11:11:22 am
Waht about these :
http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=320504385451&ssPageName=STRK:MEWNX:IT (http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=320504385451&ssPageName=STRK:MEWNX:IT)

But beware, I'm not sure if they are the same.... And mybe active speakers....

HTH,
Bulek.


Those would be awesome! Even if it's not the same, for that price I'd buy them and try it out. The only problem is this:
Shipping:    Not Available to Brazil.

As usual, the best deals aren't available here! =/

And about the active speakers, I'm also thinking about that. Though they aren't very cheap, the total should be a bit less expensive!

As for the cables, I think it's best to just buy them here, they shouldn't be too expensive right? Does the type of cable depend on the type of speakers I end up using?
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: totallymaxed on February 09, 2011, 11:36:23 am
Waht about these :
http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=320504385451&ssPageName=STRK:MEWNX:IT (http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=320504385451&ssPageName=STRK:MEWNX:IT)

But beware, I'm not sure if they are the same.... And mybe active speakers....

HTH,
Bulek.


That usb sound card is available under several brand names and works very nicely with Squeezeslave - they cost £10-12 UKP roughly.

All the best


Andrew
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: purps on February 09, 2011, 11:40:36 am
I've just bought one on Amazon for around the price that Andrew mentioned.

Cheers,
Matt.
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: gurumaia on February 09, 2011, 12:33:44 pm
Would this one work with squeezeslave?
http://cgi.ebay.com/G904-USB-2-0-3D-AUDIO-SOUND-CARD-ADAPTER-VIRTUAL-/250754507390?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item3a6222227e#ht_2976wt_907
If not, is there any documentation as to what chipsets are supported?

Thanks!
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: totallymaxed on February 09, 2011, 01:01:13 pm
Would this one work with squeezeslave?
http://cgi.ebay.com/G904-USB-2-0-3D-AUDIO-SOUND-CARD-ADAPTER-VIRTUAL-/250754507390?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item3a6222227e#ht_2976wt_907
If not, is there any documentation as to what chipsets are supported?

Thanks!

You need a sound card that gets detected and added correctly as a working sound card then Squeezeslave will work with it. So whether you are installing 08.10 or 10.04 builds will affect your success rate with these types of devices. As with many other add in products manufacturers often change the internal chip or other components but the external plastics remain the same...so even an apparently identical unit sometimes fails to work.

The sound car in the url above is not one we've tested I'm afraid so I cant provide any guidance on whether it will be detected and added
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: gurumaia on February 09, 2011, 01:26:45 pm
You need a sound card that gets detected and added correctly as a working sound card then Squeezeslave will work with it. So whether you are installing 08.10 or 10.04 builds will affect your success rate with these types of devices. As with many other add in products manufacturers often change the internal chip or other components but the external plastics remain the same...so even an apparently identical unit sometimes fails to work.

The sound car in the url above is not one we've tested I'm afraid so I cant provide any guidance on whether it will be detected and added

So if the card is detected in Linux it'll work normally with Squeezeslave? If so, awesome. All I need to do is find a Linux-compatible device. I already did find one that at least says it works with linux (and looks a lot like the lmcecompatible.com one, though I'm sure it's different components). http://cgi.ebay.com/USB-Mic-Speaker-7-1-3D-Audio-Sound-Card-Adapter-9765-/150468239984#ht_2953wt_907
And they ship to brazil for $2.50, which for me is awesome. I can buy 7 of them and still avoid the 60% import duty.

Now for amps. I've found some really cheap amps on ebay. Like, less than $20 USD. Now, of course the sound quality on these things will be less than stellar. But at least for now, I don't really care. If I can get background music going I'll be fine. I'll run the cables all to a central position so if I want to exchange the amps at a later stage, I can very easily. I just wanted to at least know if these would fry my speakers or what, cause it seems too cheap to be true. Here are two that ship to Brazil:
http://cgi.ebay.com/Hi-Fi-Stereo-Amplifier-Car-Home-MP3-CD-iPod-MA180-/280626864180?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item4156aa2034#ht_1473wt_907
http://cgi.ebay.com/mini-hi-fi-stereo-amplifier-home-use-booster-adapter-/250760218832?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item3a627948d0#ht_2126wt_1141
Does anyone have any experience with these kind of cheap amps?

Also, how does one know how loud they can be? I mean, the second one says 20W RMS x 2, but that seems a bit high to me (for the price). I'm used to measuring guitar amp loudness in RMS Watts. Though 20W RMS is not very much for guitar playing, it is ok for background listening. If a little, cheap amp like that can push 20W to 2 speakers, there must be some kind of catch I'm not getting, right?

Thanks everyone!
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: joshpond on February 09, 2011, 07:06:13 pm
A little bit different, but if all you want is background music what you have picked should be fine. Not running LMCe at work but run these ceiling speakers
http://www.jaycar.com.au/productView.asp?ID=AX3550&keywords=ceiling+speaker&form=KEYWORD
with this amp
http://www.jaycar.com.au/productView.asp?ID=AA0472&keywords=power+amplifier&form=KEYWORD

They won't ship overseas but probably similar to what you are looking at and it all works fine so I think a lower powered amp and cheap speakers do work fine.

Josh



Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: gurumaia on February 09, 2011, 07:33:21 pm
A little bit different, but if all you want is background music what you have picked should be fine. Not running LMCe at work but run these ceiling speakers
http://www.jaycar.com.au/productView.asp?ID=AX3550&keywords=ceiling+speaker&form=KEYWORD
with this amp
http://www.jaycar.com.au/productView.asp?ID=AA0472&keywords=power+amplifier&form=KEYWORD

They won't ship overseas but probably similar to what you are looking at and it all works fine so I think a lower powered amp and cheap speakers do work fine.

Josh

Good, so I guess even these cheap amps will be okay for now.
Now I only have to settle on speakers. Since they are a little bulky I might try to buy them here, to avoid the high shipping rates. Can anyone recommend some okay brands? I would like to spend a little more money on the speakers, so that I don't have to exchange them when I switch to better amps.

Thanks a lot for the help! I hope my LinuxMCE system proves to be as good as I'm imagining!
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: b4rney on February 12, 2011, 02:54:51 pm
Got one of the branded 7.1 usb soundcards from ebay when I read this thread ....

Problem is, it is listed in lsusb as :
C-Media Electronics, Inc. Audio Adapter

... but not listed using:
squeezeslave -L

Any suggestions?
Barney
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: totallymaxed on February 12, 2011, 04:47:15 pm
Got one of the branded 7.1 usb soundcards from ebay when I read this thread ....

Problem is, it is listed in lsusb as :
C-Media Electronics, Inc. Audio Adapter

... but not listed using:
squeezeslave -L

Any suggestions?
Barney

Can you post the output of lsusb and also of dmsg too.

Andrew
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: coley on February 12, 2011, 05:08:23 pm
did you execute cmds after sudo?

-Coley.
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: b4rney on February 12, 2011, 07:07:41 pm
@Coley, Yes, all done with 'sudo -s'.

@totallymaxed, thanks Andrew:
lsusb
Code: [Select]
root@dcerouter:~# lsusb
Bus 004 Device 001: ID 1d6b:0002 Linux Foundation 2.0 root hub
Bus 003 Device 004: ID 0c16:0002 Gyration, Inc.
Bus 003 Device 003: ID 067b:2303 Prolific Technology, Inc. PL2303 Serial Port
Bus 003 Device 002: ID 067b:2303 Prolific Technology, Inc. PL2303 Serial Port
Bus 003 Device 001: ID 1d6b:0001 Linux Foundation 1.1 root hub
Bus 002 Device 001: ID 1d6b:0002 Linux Foundation 2.0 root hub
Bus 001 Device 005: ID 0d8c:000c C-Media Electronics, Inc. Audio Adapter
Bus 001 Device 004: ID 10c4:ea60 Cygnal Integrated Products, Inc. CP210x Composite Device
Bus 001 Device 003: ID 0403:f850 Future Technology Devices International, Ltd
Bus 001 Device 001: ID 1d6b:0001 Linux Foundation 1.1 root hub
dmesg output looks big. Should I filter with grep?
If I use:
dmesg | grep -i usb
There is no output.
Regards
Barney
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: coley on February 12, 2011, 07:12:47 pm
its there alright.
what is the output from "aplay -l"

-Coley.
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: b4rney on February 12, 2011, 07:19:08 pm
Not there!
aplay -l
Code: [Select]
root@dcerouter:~# aplay -l
**** List of PLAYBACK Hardware Devices ****
card 0: NVidia [HDA NVidia], device 0: ALC888 Analog [ALC888 Analog]
  Subdevices: 0/1
  Subdevice #0: subdevice #0
card 0: NVidia [HDA NVidia], device 1: ALC888 Digital [ALC888 Digital]
  Subdevices: 0/1
  Subdevice #0: subdevice #0
card 0: NVidia [HDA NVidia], device 3: NVIDIA HDMI [NVIDIA HDMI]
  Subdevices: 1/1
  Subdevice #0: subdevice #0
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: rperre on February 12, 2011, 09:54:27 pm
had a lot of problem getting squeezeslave to see these cmedia usb audio cards and talked to the squeezeslave developer about it.
In the end i never really got it working with a Cmedia and bought some other brands that did show up.

What version of squeezeslave are you using? you could try to update to the latest and see if it gets detected now. There were some issues with the stream or something, can't really remember, the developer might have fixed it.

Richard
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: b4rney on February 12, 2011, 10:58:12 pm
Hi Richard,

Yeah, I saw your thread too. Thanks for the info. Didn't realise we shared the same hardware.

Might have to find the hardware Andrew recommends.

Installed using apt-get install squeezeslave.
Regards
Barney
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: b4rney on February 12, 2011, 11:06:16 pm
Found it:
Code: [Select]
root@dcerouter:~# dpkg -l | grep squeezeslave
ii  squeezeslave                               0.9-133-svn172   
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: rperre on February 12, 2011, 11:56:35 pm
yes, that's an old version from march last year, try to build it yourself and see if these devices are detected better.
Looks like they are at 1.0 r210

http://code.google.com/p/squeezeslave/downloads/list

I will look at this when i get back home sunday, i don't have access to my system atm.

Richard

P.S. squeezeslave -v should give you the version
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: b4rney on February 13, 2011, 11:35:37 pm
Tried latest build but the device is still not listed.

I have ordered the model recommended by totallymaxed.
Thanks for the help.
Barney
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: gurumaia on February 14, 2011, 11:50:03 am
Tried latest build but the device is still not listed.

I have ordered the model recommended by totallymaxed.
Thanks for the help.
Barney

Hey barney, sorry to see you're having trouble with it. Did you buy the one I linked a few replies back? And which one did you buy now?

On a related topic, maybe we should start building an HCL (or is there already one? I couldn't find it on the wiki). It should help us avoid these issues in the future.

Thanks!
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: b4rney on February 14, 2011, 10:05:06 pm
Got this one from ebay.co.uk:
http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=180614238216

This DOES NOT work (see the previous comments).

*** UPDATE***
Now working. Downgraded alsa and it works perfectly.

There are a lot of similar branded items and it is hard to distinguish between them so an HCL might prove difficult.

I think it is a good idea to create an HCL if the product is easily identifiable.
Barney
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: totallymaxed on February 14, 2011, 10:46:40 pm
Got this one from ebay.co.uk:
http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=180614238216

This DOES NOT work (see the previous comments). There are a lot of similar branded items and it is hard to distinguish between them so an HCL might prove difficult.

I think it is a good idea to create an HCL if the product is easily identifiable.
Barney

Hi Barney,

Below is the output from lsusb & aplay on a Dianemo 10.10 system for a C-Media USB Audio Card from Startech (basically the same chip as the unit you purchased on eBay...your unit is an 'up-market' model in fact!) I have attached a picture of this card manufactured by Startech below - this unit is detected correctly and functions well with Squeezeslave;

Quote
lsandrew@andrew-desktop:~$ lsusb
Bus 002 Device 024: ID 0d8c:000c C-Media Electronics, Inc. Audio Adapter
Bus 002 Device 003: ID 0458:0007 KYE Systems Corp. (Mouse Systems)
Bus 002 Device 002: ID 1241:1503 Belkin Keyboard
Bus 002 Device 001: ID 1d6b:0001 Linux Foundation 1.1 root hub
Bus 001 Device 006: ID 0fce:d11a Sony Ericsson Mobile Communications AB
Bus 001 Device 001: ID 1d6b:0002 Linux Foundation 2.0 root hub
andrew@andrew-desktop:~$ aplay -l
**** List of PLAYBACK Hardware Devices ****
card 0: NVidia [HDA NVidia], device 0: ALC662 rev1 Analog [ALC662 rev1 Analog]
  Subdevices: 1/1
  Subdevice #0: subdevice #0
card 0: NVidia [HDA NVidia], device 3: NVIDIA HDMI [NVIDIA HDMI]
  Subdevices: 0/1
  Subdevice #0: subdevice #0
card 1: default [C-Media USB Headphone Set  ], device 0: USB Audio [USB Audio]
  Subdevices: 1/1
  Subdevice #0: subdevice #0

Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: b4rney on February 15, 2011, 01:14:30 am
Hi Andrew,

Thanks for the info. Could it be that the device is better supported under 10.10 kernel? As mentioned it is not listed under aplay -l or squeezeslave -L in lmce 0810 despite appearing in lsusb.

Just a thought .... should I have the module snd-usb-audio. I can't find it.
Regards
Barney
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: b4rney on February 15, 2011, 01:54:03 am
Just tried the usb soundcard in my ubuntu laptop (10.04).

Once attached it appears in lsusb and aplay and the snd-usb-audio module magically appears. This doesn't happen on my 0810 core.
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: totallymaxed on February 15, 2011, 02:39:40 am
Hi Andrew,

Thanks for the info. Could it be that the device is better supported under 10.10 kernel? As mentioned it is not listed under aplay -l or squeezeslave -L in lmce 0810 despite appearing in lsusb.

Just a thought .... should I have the module snd-usb-audio. I can't find it.
Regards
Barney

No its not your Kernel... you need to update alsa to 1.0.22.1 or 1.0.23 in that case;

http://www.alsa-project.org/main/index.php/Main_Page (http://www.alsa-project.org/main/index.php/Main_Page)

All the best


Andrew
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: gurumaia on February 15, 2011, 11:17:57 am
Got this one from ebay.co.uk:
http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=180614238216

This DOES NOT work (see the previous comments). There are a lot of similar branded items and it is hard to distinguish between them so an HCL might prove difficult.

I think it is a good idea to create an HCL if the product is easily identifiable.
Barney

Yeah, I think it would be a little hard, but it's doable. In this case for example, if proven that your device doesn't work, we could say that sound cards using the cmedia chipset are not supported.
I hope you get it working (it seems totallymaxed has some good insights on how to get it to work).
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: b4rney on February 15, 2011, 01:42:32 pm
Already at 1.0.23. ???
There are conflicts in dmesg but I am moving this discussion to the thread linked below.

cat /proc/asound/version
Code: [Select]
root@dcerouter:~# cat /proc/asound/version
Advanced Linux Sound Architecture Driver Version 1.0.23.
Compiled on May 24 2010 for kernel 2.6.27-17-generic (SMP).
root@dcerouter:~#

Moving this discussion to a more similar thread from last year:

http://forum.linuxmce.org/index.php?topic=10268.msg79043#msg79043
Sorry for the hijack.
Barney
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: b4rney on February 18, 2011, 01:48:33 am
OK. Got the usb card recognised by downgrading alsa ;D, but now having problems with squeezeslave ???.

Following the wiki I wasn't sure where to attach the squeezeslave to. My core is in the kitchen with the usb soundcard attached. Should my squeezebox player be assigned to this room? The entertain area is the bathroom (just speakers).

Here is my output from squeezeslave -L with some errors:
Code: [Select]
root@dcerouter:~# squeezeslave -L
Expression 'snd_pcm_hw_params_set_buffer_size_near( pcm, hwParams, &lowLatency )' failed in 'src/hostapi/alsa/pa_linux_alsa.c', line: 415
Expression 'snd_pcm_hw_params_set_buffer_size_near( pcm, hwParams, &lowLatency )' failed in 'src/hostapi/alsa/pa_linux_alsa.c', line: 415
Expression 'snd_pcm_hw_params_set_buffer_size_near( pcm, hwParams, &lowLatency )' failed in 'src/hostapi/alsa/pa_linux_alsa.c', line: 415
Output devices:
* 0: (ALSA) HDA NVidia: ALC888 Analog (hw:0,0) (11/46)
  1: (ALSA) HDA NVidia: ALC888 Digital (hw:0,1) (11/46)
  4: (ALSA) front (11/46)
  5: (ALSA) surround40 (11/46)
  6: (ALSA) surround41 (11/46)
  7: (ALSA) surround50 (11/46)
  8: (ALSA) surround51 (11/46)
  9: (ALSA) surround71 (11/46)
 10: (ALSA) iec958 (11/46)
 11: (ALSA) spdif (11/46)
 13: (ALSA) asym_analog (42/46)
 14: (ALSA) dmix (42/42)
root@dcerouter:~#
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: rperre on February 18, 2011, 02:15:24 am
Put it in the Bathroom, it's seen as a "separate" device for lmce

I would try 14, 13 or 4 in that order :)

Richard
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: b4rney on February 18, 2011, 05:50:47 pm
Thanks Richard, I know you had these problems yourself.

That squeezebox -L command was executed after I'd launched squeezeslave with device 3 (c-media usb sound card) and it is no longer on the list. It was there before added the command to rc.local and restarted.

Also, how does the core know where the usb soundcard is if I assign it to the bathroom?

Any ideas?
Barney
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: buckle on February 18, 2011, 07:08:25 pm
It will know because it registers to the Squeeze server with the MAC address used when launching the squeezeslave (-m).

You add the squeeze device to LinuxMCE and set it with the appropriate MAC address device data.
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: rperre on February 19, 2011, 01:33:45 am
b4rney don't worry to much on how it does it, just follow the wiki. it will basically assign the squeezelave to that bathroom as an "md" (sorta) so you can control it with the orbiters. Just change rooms to the bathroom and control the audio played.

Sorry to see you are having problems with this, don't give up though.

Richard
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: b4rney on February 19, 2011, 11:28:29 pm
Thanks guys.

Trying again now. Assigned squeezebox player to bathroom.

Barney
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: b4rney on February 20, 2011, 01:01:30 am
Working!  ;D

Just need to configure my zone2 on my Denon 2310 located with the core. LMCE constantly surprises me. Thank you for this thread or I might never have known about this solution. Simply awesome!

FYI the cheaper ebay usb sound card works just as well as the more expensive version I got from amazon. Both are c-media devices.

Barney
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: totallymaxed on February 20, 2011, 10:40:44 am
Working!  ;D

Just need to configure my zone2 on my Denon 2310 located with the core. LMCE constantly surprises me. Thank you for this thread or I might never have known about this solution. Simply awesome!

FYI the cheaper ebay usb sound card works just as well as the more expensive version I got from amazon. Both are c-media devices.

Barney

Barney,

Great :-)

One thing to be aware of is that if you reboot your Core (or MD if thats where your sound card is) your USB sound card will likely come up with a different device id and this will need to be corrected before it will function again. Its easy to correct but a pain. In Dianemo we have some code that manages the sound cards but because our Squeezeslave implementation uses Dianemo style devices this has not been incorporated into the LinuxMCE builds yet as far as I know (I could be wrong though about that).

Anyway its great you got everything working - now you can have some fun actually doing some cool things with it :-)

All the best


Andrew
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: b4rney on February 20, 2011, 01:28:17 pm
Thanks Andrew,

Did a restart this morning and it was still OK but will keep an eye on it.

Need to spend some time to integrate it fully ... but as of now I have my core providing zone 2 sound using my n800. I'm impressed that mute and vol-up, vol-down work ... presumably using alsa.

Many thanks to everyone involved.
Barney
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: rperre on February 20, 2011, 04:11:55 pm
good to see you got it working, if you have any comments and/or additions for the wiki, please put them in.

Richard
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: b4rney on February 20, 2011, 07:04:03 pm
Just added a couple of lines to the wiki. Firstly, to explain the downgrade process I performed in order for my device to appear.

Secondly, to add that the 'squeezebox player' can, and usually should, be added to a room with no md.
Barney
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: posde on February 21, 2011, 08:09:04 am
Secondly, to add that the 'squeezebox player' can, and usually should, be added to a room with no md.

Each media player needs a dedicated "room".
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: phenigma on February 21, 2011, 08:35:37 am
Each media player needs a dedicated "room".

posde, as it is a little confusing, and I don't think I fully understand, could you (or someone else) provide a brief description of how an 'EA' (Entertainment Area) and a 'Room' are similar/different.  I've always thought I could create more than one EA for a Room (say MD and standalone squeezebox).  But to have proper integration I've always had to create a new 'Room' for each media player (MD, squeezebox, etc.).  I don't want to hi-jack the thread (happy if this has to go to a new one) but I've wondered.

Thanks,

J.
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: posde on February 21, 2011, 09:26:07 am
In theory there is a differentiation between an EA and a room, where a single room, can have multiple EAs, but those EAs need to be manually configured.

In reality, I've always failed when I tried to manually setup EAs. Maybe this wiki article helps http://wiki.linuxmce.org/index.php/Rooms

I create rooms for every area where a media player is located.
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: totallymaxed on February 21, 2011, 12:02:47 pm
posde, as it is a little confusing, and I don't think I fully understand, could you (or someone else) provide a brief description of how an 'EA' (Entertainment Area) and a 'Room' are similar/different.  I've always thought I could create more than one EA for a Room (say MD and standalone squeezebox).  But to have proper integration I've always had to create a new 'Room' for each media player (MD, squeezebox, etc.).  I don't want to hi-jack the thread (happy if this has to go to a new one) but I've wondered.

Thanks,

J.

Hi phenigma,

As posde already stated EA's are intended to be used to create sub-zones in a room and they have to be manually created currently. There does appear to be some pretty arcane bugs in our current support for EA's and it easy to create a 'damaged' EA. It would be good if someone took on the task of debugging this and mapping out where the bugs are. Then one of the devs can pickup this info and work on a fix.

All the best


Andrew
Title: Re: Multi-room Audio - a tad confused
Post by: phenigma on February 21, 2011, 04:15:59 pm
Thanks posde and totallymaxed!

J.