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PostPosted: 09 Oct 2016, 20:25 
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A while back I picked up a Raspberry Pi 2B and have been using it as a network appliance for over a year now and I have been very pleased with this tiny inexpensive computer. Earlier this year the Raspberry Pi 3 Model B was released. The new Raspberry Pi 3 is 40% faster, and now comes with on-board WiFi and Bluetooth, with the price remaining the same at $35US (total cost of the Raspberry Pi3 setup is $35US + $10 microSD card + $10 enclosure, about $55US). So I decided to purchase a Pi 3 with the intention of trying it out as music server.

After looking at the various media system offerings, I decided to try out Volumio - https://volumio.org/
I decided to try this one first as I liked the fact the control interface is via any browser on the local network.

I managed to get the system up and running without too many troubles. My setup is as follows:

Wifi
Samba NAS network share
USB external DAC - Cambridge Audio DacMagic Plus

So far it is working well, all the way up to 24bit 192kHz flac. No clicks, pops, no problems. And that is via wifi and streaming from NAS share. I can't control the DAC volume right now from the web interface. I think that is because I need to change the mixer from the default to Cambridge Audio. I'll try that later. Right now I am enjoying the music. I'll report back soon.

EDIT - DAC Magic Plus does not appear to support hardware volume control via the music player.

Cheers.

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PostPosted: 19 Oct 2016, 19:36 
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The Volumio software seems quite stable. I haven't noticed any software or wifi related issues. It connects to the wifi automatically at startup and has always remained connected during playback.

The only issue that I have encountered is that from a cold power-up, it does not seem to auto reconnect to the NAS share. The work around is simple, right after a cold boot, got to My Music. Click the edit button to the share and then save and the drive is mounted.

I'm surprised and pleased that it works so well via wifi and over USB.

Cheers

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PostPosted: 24 Oct 2016, 06:38 
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As you may have read I have been pushing the Pi barrow for some months. For me Rune audio is better but what one OS wan't support the other will. I have three Pis all with different daughter boards or connections. My main axe is a Pi3 with Rune running a DSD USB DIY DAC. But one other Pi2 has to run Volumio because Rune will not support the optical\digital daughter board.

I'm in the middle of a portable Pi server and headphone setup. Where I work - Jaycar Electronics - have a number of slim, light weight battery charger banks for phone etc. You charge them up and when you are out partying and your phones running down you plug them in and charge your phone with no mains require. Some a 5000mAh and others 10000mAh. I'm about to try my daughter's lipstick shape and sized one we got her earlier this year. Small light and very compact. With the Pi and daughter board drawing so little a true portable music server should be possible.

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Projects: "Lagoon" - tube preamp with cathode follower | "retro-Oatley 6J6" - 6J6 push-pull headphone amp with OPTs | "retro-Hiraga" - Jean Hiraga Le Monster
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PostPosted: 25 Oct 2016, 21:16 
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The little Pi computers are fun.

I had my first blips the other day, however, as far as I could tell the issue was just competing wifi bandwidth related.

Cheers

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PostPosted: 27 Oct 2016, 21:06 
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Volumio has released a ver2.001 just week back. Rune is still better on a number of front.

I spoke of a portable Pi. We bought our daughter a portable mobile phone charger pack. Looks like a long white lipstick. It has a charge only port and a USB A port. It does take a while to charge but powered my Pi2 for 4hours of constant use streaming. Bloody beauty! Also has on\off switch.

The power pack is moderately light and comes with a torch on one end and is fashionably smart looking. And cheap.

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Projects: "Lagoon" - tube preamp with cathode follower | "retro-Oatley 6J6" - 6J6 push-pull headphone amp with OPTs | "retro-Hiraga" - Jean Hiraga Le Monster
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PostPosted: 29 Oct 2016, 11:16 
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I've tried out RuneAudio now and like Mark noted, the software is more advanced than where Volumio is right now. See the RuneAudio / Rapsberry Pi 3 thread for my experience with that music player.

Mark - nice portable player. I love the low power consumption of the Pi computers. Endless possibilities with them.

Cheers

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PostPosted: 29 Oct 2016, 17:54 
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Gio I know you have a good DAC. For US$63 you can purchase from eBay a XMOS based DSD USB (I2S) DAC card. You need nothing else it has RCA output on brd. You only need two trannies to power it for all the PS requirements are on the brd. This includes ultra-low noise regs. They claim you need three trannies and that is best for absolute top sound quality but I found one tranni with dual secondaries which works just as well, saves some space and a little cost.

If you want to go that path and make your own (I have to be 100% DIY) very high performance DAC let me know and I'll get a link to the brds. I built mine in a 1U 19" rack mount, smart looking. I did add a power filter inside but that's all. Easy to do and Sh!ts on my Oppo 95 (with SABA32 DAC chips) for sound quality. I can't stop listening to it.

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Projects: "Lagoon" - tube preamp with cathode follower | "retro-Oatley 6J6" - 6J6 push-pull headphone amp with OPTs | "retro-Hiraga" - Jean Hiraga Le Monster
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PostPosted: 04 Nov 2016, 20:57 
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Hi Mark. For the open baffle system I use bi-amplification and an active crossover which only has balanced XLR input so the DAC needs a balanced XLR output. So thanks for the heads-up, but I have too much other stuff I need to build first.

Cheers

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PostPosted: 05 Nov 2016, 02:02 
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Gio wrote:
Hi Mark. For the open baffle system I use bi-amplification and an active crossover which only has balanced XLR input so the DAC needs a balanced XLR output. So thanks for the heads-up, but I have too much other stuff I need to build first.

Cheers

I know the feeling. A 6L6 amp, getting two chip amps to stop humming and Class D Tripath monoblocks.

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Projects: "Lagoon" - tube preamp with cathode follower | "retro-Oatley 6J6" - 6J6 push-pull headphone amp with OPTs | "retro-Hiraga" - Jean Hiraga Le Monster
Website: retro-thermionic


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PostPosted: 13 Jan 2017, 16:17 
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Great stuff. I just installed Runeaudio on PI2, and I am using the DACmagic (1st release, so not "plus") via USB

Question: will it be a major improvement if I move to an I2S DAC board (like hifiberry, IQaudio, etc..)

Reason for asking:
(a) There seems to be a strong motivation to use I2S versus USB Dacs (no interference on USB if you use I2S)
(b) DACMagic might be outdated (they use Wolfson WMB8740 24-bit DAC)

Has anyone tried to compare USB DAC versus these I2S DAC's, and specifically compared with Cambrdige DACMagic? Any quality difference?

Thanks for your advice / feedback
Henk


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