Author Topic: questions about audio only MD  (Read 2193 times)

malelan

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questions about audio only MD
« on: June 30, 2011, 10:52:42 pm »
Preface:

I do not even have LinuxMCE installed, and have never installed it.
That being said.  i'm attempting to determine if this is right for me, and what i'm looking for.

Background:

I have experience with linux, and mythtv.

Questions:

I'm definitely interested in setting this up.  Huge fan of the mythtv product.  very interested in adding more onto this base for home automation.  Already have quite a bit of equipment.  Heres the situation.

House is wired with cat5,  all cat5 runs to the basement rack.  the basement rack is where my core will be located (already have a linux server sitting down there, making it a core shouldnt be an issue).

Bedroom/livingroom/office will likely run normal standard MD's with tvs+speakers, no problem here.  however, there are rooms without a tv, that i'd like to add audio support for.  here's my question.

It seems like the audio only MD of choice is a squeezebox.  sure, i have no problem with this.

Question #1,  Is there any reason my squeezebox needs to actually be located in that room?  I'd like to install some in-wall speakers, and i'll run all the speaker runs down to the rack.  if i use a squeezebox->small 2 channel amp->speakers and keep everything in the rack except the actual speakers, is this feasible?

Question #2,  If its going to be in the rack, and i have extra equipment, does it need to be a squeezebox?  could i just use a regular headless linux box as a MD for a room, but keep the box physically located in the rack in the basement?  as long as i was able to tie into the rooms speakers?



posde

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Re: questions about audio only MD
« Reply #1 on: June 30, 2011, 11:36:27 pm »
[..]
Question #1,  Is there any reason my squeezebox needs to actually be located in that room? [..]

no.
Quote
Question #2,  If its going to be in the rack, and i have extra equipment, does it need to be a squeezebox?  could i just use a regular headless linux box as a MD for a room, but keep the box physically located in the rack in the basement?  as long as i was able to tie into the rooms speakers?

Yes, but the Squeezebox is probably cheaper and more robust in the long run.

malelan

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Re: questions about audio only MD
« Reply #2 on: June 30, 2011, 11:38:58 pm »
thanks for your replies.

completely understand. 

klovell

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Re: questions about audio only MD
« Reply #3 on: June 30, 2011, 11:47:50 pm »
I thought we had the ability to add additional sound cards (internal or extrrnal) to the core and/or mds to create zoned audio?  If that's the case, wouldn't additional sound cards be the best option?

What's he gaining from a sqeezebox when it's going to be sitting in the basement out of sight?  Plus a usb sound card is way cheaper than a squeezebox.

malelan

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Re: questions about audio only MD
« Reply #4 on: July 01, 2011, 01:12:04 am »
totally interested in this idea,

thanks for breaking it up.  i'd be curious to see if this is possible, of you can specify zones to use specific devices for output.

posde

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Re: questions about audio only MD
« Reply #5 on: July 01, 2011, 08:14:26 am »
Adding soundcards for additional zones is another option, that would work as well. Adding Squeezeboxes is plug and play.

malelan

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Re: questions about audio only MD
« Reply #6 on: July 01, 2011, 03:42:25 pm »
Ok, so next question, and i'm installing this weekend, i promise.  built the server last night.

is anyone currently running more than one soundcard in their machine?  is there any advice on usb soundcard support for linux?  i looked up some basic drivers (not related to linuxmce, just linux in general) but would like to see if there was input from someone using this in linuxmce.

could this run int he core or should i have another machine dedicated to zoned audio?

coley

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Re: questions about audio only MD
« Reply #7 on: July 01, 2011, 04:07:13 pm »
I have a mix - 3 squeezeboxes and 2 of these http://wiki.linuxmce.org/index.php/Topping_TP30 plugged into my core running squeezeslave, see instructions http://wiki.linuxmce.org/index.php/Squeezeslave_on_the_core. Have a read through the wiki entries and if you have further questions I'll try to ans.

-Coley.

malelan

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Re: questions about audio only MD
« Reply #8 on: July 01, 2011, 04:16:38 pm »
thanks so much, this is a great start, i'll go from there, good to know someone is running this.

malelan

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Re: questions about audio only MD
« Reply #9 on: July 01, 2011, 05:49:55 pm »
Ok,

Topping TP30 is definitely what i'm looking for.  I was thinking about installing a wall jack inside the room.  Even though the speaker cables will run to the rack, and be powered by the core/amp i think it would be silly to have speakers in a room without having a manual way to plug into them.  in the event that there was a situation where i'd need to plug some type of audio device thats located in the room, into the speakers.  i'd like that option.   what i was thinking was, can i run speaker cables from TP30 to the speakers, usb cable from TP30 to core (running squeezeslave), and wall outlet plate rca jacks from the room into the AUX on the TP30?  do you need to hardware switch between usb/AUX? or does it accept input from both?

coley

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Re: questions about audio only MD
« Reply #10 on: July 01, 2011, 06:39:33 pm »
yup, switching between usb and aux is a switch on the front of the unit. As are volume and power. If you google "usb dac" you should find similar devices which may have the extras you require.

-Coley.

totallymaxed

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Re: questions about audio only MD
« Reply #11 on: July 03, 2011, 06:00:59 pm »

Question #2,  If its going to be in the rack, and i have extra equipment, does it need to be a squeezebox?  could i just use a regular headless linux box as a MD for a room, but keep the box physically located in the rack in the basement?  as long as i was able to tie into the rooms speakers?

No it doesn't. We use Squeezeslave in Dianemo and LinuxMCE has some of that capability too now. See here; http://wiki.linuxmce.org/index.php/Squeezeslave_on_the_core

We have installations using 8-16 Squeezeboxes or Squeezeslaves and they work excellently for audio distribution... located either locally in the room, centrally in the rack or a mix of the two. If you use a analog/stereo USB sound card you can be fairly sure that it will draw about 2.5-3W of power from the host system when being driven for playback.

All the best


Andrew
« Last Edit: July 04, 2011, 12:38:14 am by totallymaxed »
Andy Herron,
Convergent Home Technologies Ltd
United Kingdom

Read My Blog; http://ellipticalcurve.com

Contact me for Smart Home consulting advice here;
@herron on Twitter, totallymaxed+consulting@gmail.com via email or PM me here.

Get a Dianemo S License: http://forum.linuxmce.org/index.php?topic=8880.0
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posde

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Re: questions about audio only MD
« Reply #12 on: July 03, 2011, 09:03:17 pm »
One thing to look at as well, is the power consumption. A Squeezebox receiver uses something like 5W total. What does a headless linux box use? If it is not off of the core, or an existing already running MD, I would not use a Linux box for it.

daci92

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Re: questions about audio only MD
« Reply #13 on: July 04, 2011, 10:09:52 am »
Hey man i saw something about squeeze slaves on the core or md for audio zones.
I have 4 audio zones at home which can be separated in six ,and i'm using them now like 2 zones because i dont have enough money at the moment for buying new md's.All of the MD's will be used for audio zones ,so let me ask u do i need MD or i can put several audio cards at my core and play on the all audio zones simultaneously? How does that work? Do i need squeezeboxes for using this way??
I have some inwall audio receivers which cost a lot and i dont plan to spend lots of money on squeezeboxes .
Sorry for making mess with my questions but i didnt know there is an option for multiple audio zones on same core or md.

totallymaxed

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Re: questions about audio only MD
« Reply #14 on: July 04, 2011, 11:00:16 am »
Hey man i saw something about squeeze slaves on the core or md for audio zones.
I have 4 audio zones at home which can be separated in six ,and i'm using them now like 2 zones because i dont have enough money at the moment for buying new md's.All of the MD's will be used for audio zones ,so let me ask u do i need MD or i can put several audio cards at my core and play on the all audio zones simultaneously? How does that work? Do i need squeezeboxes for using this way??
I have some inwall audio receivers which cost a lot and i dont plan to spend lots of money on squeezeboxes .
Sorry for making mess with my questions but i didnt know there is an option for multiple audio zones on same core or md.

See my link to the Wiki page about Squeezeslaves in my post above.

All the best


Andrew
Andy Herron,
Convergent Home Technologies Ltd
United Kingdom

Read My Blog; http://ellipticalcurve.com

Contact me for Smart Home consulting advice here;
@herron on Twitter, totallymaxed+consulting@gmail.com via email or PM me here.

Get a Dianemo S License: http://forum.linuxmce.org/index.php?topic=8880.0
iOS Orbiter: http://wiki.linuxmce.org/index.php/Dianemo_iOS_Orbiter
Follow us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Dianemo-Home-Automation/226019387454465

Sales & Info:
http://www.dianemo.co.uk