Dummies Guide to Pi2AES! Throw away your PC or laptop.

Discussion in 'Digital: DACs, USB converters, decrapifiers' started by purr1n, Jan 29, 2020.

  1. crazychile

    crazychile Eastern Iowa's Spiciest Pepper

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    I tried that. I tried downloading, extracting and writing the image about 3 different ways including using Etcher. But I can give it another go. After the image is written to the SD card, is it still a single .iso file or is Etcher supposed to expand it further into a bunch of files like I saw in Volumio? Or does that happen when first booted in the RPi?

    Thanks for helping!
     
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  2. Michael Kelly

    Michael Kelly MOT: Pi 2 Design

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    Hifiberry Digi + Pro

    Michael
     
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  3. leafy

    leafy Rando

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    I recently switched from hifiberry digi+ Pro to PI2aes for the native AES connector for my Yggdrasil.

    When I used the digi+Pro, I had to solder a 75ohm BNC socket onto the pro myself and use a BNC to AES transformer adapter. The PI2aes by comparison, is much simpler and shaves off the slightly sibilant top end for me, with the benefits of better layering and better imaging.
     
  4. Michael Kelly

    Michael Kelly MOT: Pi 2 Design

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    As always, upgrading does not always equal noticeable or significant sound quality changes. The downstream DAC, headphone, amplifier, speakers, your ears, your brain, etc. etc. all play their part.

    That said, the PI2AES has measurably lower jitter than the Hifiberry Digi + pro. Both products use the same AES transmitter, from the Cirrus WM880x family. Where they differ is the choice of low noise regulators and higher performance clock isolators that we use. This adds up to cost and so we are quite a bit more than the hi-fi berry products.

    Michael
     
  5. msommers

    msommers High on Epipens

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    Etcher just wants to see a .iso file as 'the image' to load onto the microSD.
     
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  6. GoodEnoughGear

    GoodEnoughGear Evil Dr. Shultz‎

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    But presumably it extracts that disk image and results in a set of files and folders on the target volume...
     
  7. haywood

    haywood Friend

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    I’m not really one to talk as I have a big backlog of stuff I haven’t done this with yet but you should submit code changes to the project:

    https://github.com/moode-player/moode
     
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  8. earnmyturns

    earnmyturns Smartest friend

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    I have a Pi2AES setup at work, standalone with Mean Well SMPS, PiTouch screen and USB SSD drive, running moOde. When I was assembling it at home, I tested it against the (original) Allo USBridge powered by an Sbooster LPS that feds the beta Unison board on my Yggdrasil. It was a quick test, but the Pi2AES sounded to my ears a tad better. To the point that I've ordered another Pi2AES for home, which just arrived but I have not finished assembling yet. I'll report with I hope blind-ish tests thanks to friendly willing subjects when I finish setting it up.
     
  9. earnmyturns

    earnmyturns Smartest friend

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    Also Ropieee. RopieeeXL adds DLNA, Airplay, and Spotify to RoonBridge.
     
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  10. earnmyturns

    earnmyturns Smartest friend

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    I have a Pi2AES sending AES to a dac1541. Sounds really good. But then the dac1541 is the least fussy about source of all the DACs I've owned, it sounded quite good with BNC from a 502DAC or even with USB when I got it at first.
     
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  11. Biodegraded

    Biodegraded Friend

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    wrt Volumio & moOde,

    This might be another benefit of going with a UPnP server and just letting Volumio/moOde be the renderer. I don't have a massive library but Minimserver seems to understand it perfectly, and the variety of UPnP control-point apps available means everybody should be able to find an interface they're happy with (for me that's HiFi-Cast).
     
  12. Raicorl

    Raicorl Acquaintance

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    Gustard x26 takes PI2Aes's i2s output very well, so you dont have to bother with spdif or AES. It just sound better in everyway. ;) Digione Signature seems faster (not 100% sure) but kinda bass light in my setup. They are all good enough, just different.


    Opinions on power supplies: After some period testing Panasonic 18650 batteries , Aliespress LIFEPO4 (yikes)/ 115$ Aliexpress LPS / Cheap local LPS I would say, they all just bad in their ways... just stick with decent smps (mine were Huntkey stock Intel NUC supply / 2 stock smps from allo) . Even though I ordered allo Shanti LPS...just for science xD
     
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  13. Aklegal

    Aklegal Almost "Made"

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    I'm going to try Volumio, Moode and PiCorePlayer but I haven't ruled out sticking with Jriver and using the Pi2AES as a zone or renderer. I've used Jriver for 7 years and have no complaints other than software push updates sometimes causing it to crash. Plus I love Jremote.
     
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  14. Soups

    Soups Sadomasochistic cat

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    For many use cases, I think beginners would do well to start with RopieeeXL. Between various HATs, I've also tried Volumio, DietPi, piCorePlayer, and RopieeeXL gets the nod for me for its combination of ease of setup, reliability, regular updates, and yes, sound quality.

    Warning, RopieeeXL doesn't provide its own web player UI, and I'm not a Roon user. I use it primarily with Audirvana to stream locally and Qobuz/Tidal. Eventually want to give Moode a try, but most days, I just keep falling back to enjoying the music with RopieeeXL.
     
  15. Poleepkwa

    Poleepkwa Friend

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    RopieeeXL has been hassle free for me. As a Roon user I have not tried anything better. I will give second place nod to Picoreplayer. It is the hardest to setup of the big 3 (Picoreplayer, Volumio and Moode). It does offer the most flexibility of these operating systems (server setup, overclocking,underclocking, Alsa setup, ect) Thanks @Scott Kramer who recommended Picoreplayer back in 2016. This eased the loss of the Squeezebox family back then.
     
    Last edited: Jan 30, 2020
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  16. Soups

    Soups Sadomasochistic cat

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    If you're looking to disable the Wi-Fi on your Pi for an ethernet cable connection, but run Wi-Fi for everything else (like most people) here's an affordable, reliable Wi-Fi repeater w/ RJ45 port that I've been happy with for a few months:

    https://www.amazon.com/TP-Link-Extender-Repeater-Housing-RE200/dp/B07N1WW638

    Also, if any friends/contributors could use a longer ethernet cable for their setup, PM me as I have some new, spare 30ft Cat5 cables that I can send for free if you cover shipping.
     
  17. txroadandmtb

    txroadandmtb Rando

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    Can anyone compare sound quality of pi2aes hat with allo digione (which I currently am running with moode).
     
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  18. Elnrik

    Elnrik Super Friendly

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    Try using Rufus to create the image.

    https://rufus.ie/

    The contents of the ISO file are supposed to be extracted when creating your flash drive, and Rufus will do that automatically.
     
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  19. wormcycle

    wormcycle Friend

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    @Michael Kelly great response, it is my birthday coming I do not know how my wife can resist buying me something with lower jitter and higher performance clock isolators. Hopefully :)
    But seriously I started with Digi+ Pro very early in the game and the results were very good comparing to what I could get from PC, with even pretty good audio cards like Asys Xonar Essence STX, at that time way more expensive than .Pi2AES.
    Right now I would just buy Pi2AES, and be done with it. Particularly with wired connection to NAS, I would not do any wi-fi on Rpi, or even USB connected drive. Maybe on Rpi 4 but I did not try it yer.
    Yes if you want to spend 10x more on the player like Bryston BDP-2 you will hear the difference, but I do not know why anyone would even bother with a laptop USB.
     
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  20. Hooncake

    Hooncake Mid-Fi Purgatory Redemption

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    How is this different from lynx aes16e the hot stuff before everyone jumped to unison?
     
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