Pi 2 Design - How do I get started?

Discussion in 'Computer Audiophile: Software, Configs, Tools' started by purr1n, Jan 6, 2020.

  1. purr1n

    purr1n Finding his inner redneck

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    Can someone tell me how I get started? Very interested in this as a source, but like many others, I have no clue how to get started. I know that I am not the only one. I just don't have the time to do research, so if the folks here can just make it super simple for me.

    What do I need to buy?
    How does this plug into my DAC?
    What do I need to download? What OS? What programs? What players?
    How do I use it? What about mouse, keyboards, videos?
     
  2. wormcycle

    wormcycle Friend

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  3. RobS

    RobS treboR (Psalmanazar Groupie)

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  4. rlow

    rlow A happy woofer

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    I followed @toddrhodes guide - easy peasy. The hardest part was actually putting together the case. You can frickin handle that @RobS! Otherwise I lose all respect.

    BTW, Todd’s guide assumes you have a Roon subscription and are running Roon Core (server) on your network, which is probably the simplest way to get up and running.

    @purr1n if you don’t have Roon, it will mainly depend what device you prefer to control it with (e.g. Android phone or iPhone or IPad, laptop PC, etc) and what you want to play (e.g. local/network music files, Tidal, Spotify, etc).

    Plug in to your DAC via AES to Yggdrasil, or BNC/Coax to another DAC. It actually has I2S as well via HDMI but no experience with that.
     
    Last edited: Jan 6, 2020
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  5. HumanFly

    HumanFly Acquaintance

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    The easy bit is what you need:
    1. A Raspberry Pi
    2. The 502DAC
    3. Ethernetcable
    4. A micro-sd card for the OS (and something to write it with, I use a usb-dongle with micro usbslot)
    5. A 5v powersupply that can connect to the 502 DAC (I think it takes a 2,5mm barrel)

    You then connect the 502DAC to the Pi by just sticking the pi`s 40 pins into the 502DACS 40 holes, (don`t forget the added stand-offs). And you are done with assembly! You can`t go wrong if you make sure the pins are aligned with the holes.This stuff looks flimsy but it can take some abuse. Next burn the OS you downloaded to the sd-card. I use BalenaEtcher, it`s simple and free and doesn`t go wrong often. For a first time user Ropiee(if you use ROON and/or Spotify) or Volumio are a perfect OS as they both setup the hardware almost automatically and are free. You insert the sdcard into the pi, attach the ethernet and your audio cable(s) and lastly you insert the powersupply into the 502DAC. Give it time to boot (with Ropiee the lights on the pi start blinking slower when it booted). Now go into your router and look up the IP of the pi or just type volumio or ropiee in the searchbar of your pc/phone/laptop. Make sure it is on the same network as the pi btw! The browser will direct you to the pi. Now you can set up your audio player via the browser.

    The hardest part is finding the software that you like most because there are many flavours and not all of them are as userfriendly as Ropiee or Volumio but all are fun to just play around with.

    EDIT:
    Howto go into your DAC depends on your DACs options and the type of 502DAC you get. The regualr one offers BNC and AES via a weird adapter. The 502AES offers a regular AES out.

    No videos! In a normal setup you use it as a headless machine wich means you control via another device (that is connected to the same network) There is no need to add a monitor to the pi. There are options to do so but it will only show what is playing.
     
    Last edited: Jan 6, 2020
  6. RobS

    RobS treboR (Psalmanazar Groupie)

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    Lol dude I am just that lazy.

    Ahh so you're still using an additional PC, phone, iPad, or whatever for your actual music player software and/or streaming apps? You're just sending that data over your network to the Pi2AES.
     
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  7. rlow

    rlow A happy woofer

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    I think since @purr1n was asking how to hook it up to his DAC, he’s taking about the Pi2AES streamer/player (with digital outs), not the 502DAC (which has analog outs).
     
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  8. HumanFly

    HumanFly Acquaintance

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    I use the regular 502 with the AES adapter. It also offers BNC. And yes there are analog outputs too but why add a DAC to those?
     
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  9. RobS

    RobS treboR (Psalmanazar Groupie)

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    Here's a video of the assembly of the 502DAC HAT and case:



    It's the same deal for the Pi2AES.
     
  10. purr1n

    purr1n Finding his inner redneck

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    OK. So I just need the Pi2AES? Reading the @toddrhodes version. Imma gonna do a step by step with pictures. Will assemble one and put on the loaner.

    1. The Volumio thing, is that an OS/app package all in one? Can I also put music files on the SD card?
    2. Should I just buy a Raspberry Pi board? Will I need a power supply for it? How much memory do I need? What version 3 or 4 of the RPi?
    3. Do I need the external power supply for the Pi2AES?

    Sorry, just a lot of dumb questions.
     
    Last edited: Jan 6, 2020
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  11. HumanFly

    HumanFly Acquaintance

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    I would go for the 502AES now. And yes you need a powersupply. It needed at least 19volts last time I checked (check with @Michael Kelly ) but I`m not up to date on that and stuff has changed. If you get a 16GB card you can run anything you like from it. The music is best put somwhere else as you will want to be able to just erase the sd and install something else. As per the pi4 the ethernet and usb are no longer on the same bus, so technically you could use a usb-stick or an external hd via usb and it would still sound ok. Volumio itself you can download as a ready to burn file. You then use a browser on the same network to control it, no app needed. You can use a number off apps to send music to volumio, even ROON will do it but it won`t do RAAT.
     
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  12. purr1n

    purr1n Finding his inner redneck

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    OK, so I just ordered the following from http://www.pi2design.com/

    1. PI2AES - ACRYLIC CASE
    2. PI2AES - EXTERNAL 40W, 24V POWER SUPPLY
    3. PI2AES - PRO AUDIO SHIELD (I'll ask @Michael Kelly for a 502AES too to cover all the bases).

    Looking like the only other pieces I need are a RPI 4 and a microSD 16GB.

    Does the RPi4 have WiFi?

    I think I will have my son figure out how fits works together. He can make a YouTube video for dummies like me.

    Thanks much everyone, it seems much less daunting now. I really want to get rid of this old Mac with keyboard, mouse, monitor that I have been using as my bedside music source.
     
  13. HumanFly

    HumanFly Acquaintance

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    Yes it has WiFi. 802.11ac on 2,4 and 5 gigahertz.
    Volumio also offers the option to use it as a WiFi-Hotspot.

    I think you are all set and your son will have a fun evening :)
     
  14. Ksaurav402

    Ksaurav402 Friend

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    Digione Signature will send you assembled Kit ready to plug and play but at higher cost or below link to setup Pi2AES at lower cost
    https://www.superbestaudiofriends.o...pi-i2s-to-spdif-hat.1990/page-101#post-268222
     
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  15. Clemmaster

    Clemmaster Friend

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    The Pi 3b+ also has all of the above and is probably less power hungry.

    For the OS, I personally prefer Ropieee (or RopieeeXL, which adds Spotify and Airplay support, in addition to Roon), which doesn't require to SSH into and comes standard with a web UI.

    Just follow the Getting started page.
     
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  16. Hands

    Hands Overzealous Auto Flusher - Measurbator

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    Assembling the hardware is easy. Don't worry about that.

    Download Volumio. It's basically a pre-baked Linux image that you'll write onto your micro SD card. They give you instructions on the site.

    Pop that bad boy card into your RPi while it's powered off.

    Once you boot up your RPi, with the Volumio image, you'll be able to access the web front end for the device from a web browser. You can pretty much do everything from there. You should rarely, if ever, have to ssh into the RPi itself or anything like that.

    You'll need to connect with ethernet to start, by the way, but Volumio will let you connect to WiFi in its setup wizard.

    Volumio can be setup to get music from a NAS share or local device.

    Honestly, it's all pretty straightforward once you load up the Volumio front end in your browser.

    Have Apple devices? You can use Volumio as an AirPlay source. No Apple? It works with UPnP, and you'll need janky apps like BubbleUPnP to "cast" to Volumio if on Android.

    Use Roon? SSH into the RPi and run the Roon Bridge install script. Then you can select it like you would any other Roon device. (Note: I had issues with Roon not starting properly on reboots and had to customize my systemd unit files to get this working. I can help you out with this if you run into this.)

    Roon is expensive as fuck, but the software is legit and makes using the RPi as a digital audio source very pleasant.

    Don't get wrapped up in all the other options for now. I'm giving you what's arguably the easiest, most fruitful path forward.
     
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  17. Biodegraded

    Biodegraded Friend

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    Not strictly necessary - if no wires, it'll initially set itself up as a WiFi hotspot and the rest of the setup can be done from there.

    Other benefits of Volumio are a Spotify plugin (presuming you pay for Spotify) and if you're willing to pay for 'My Volumio' (price varies with no. of devices), Tidal and Qobuz integration.

    Playing either through the Volumio web-browser front end or via UPnP with MinimServer as the server and Hi-Fi Cast as an Android control point has been pretty painless for me.
     
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  18. joch

    joch Friend

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    What Hands said.

    1. Get your Pi2AES (HAT, i.e., the board), case, power brick)
    2. Get the Pi from raspberrypi.org (or rs-online.com). I think the Pi 3 is good enough, but the Pi2AES takes the latest Pi 4.
    3. Get a 8, 16 or 32gb micro SD card. Correct me if I'm wrong, but the Raspberry Pi works best up to 32gb. You only need this to boot the system to run it.
    4. Download the image from Volumio.org at https://volumio.org/get-started/ -- this is a good place to start, and you can jump to other OSes later.
    5. Insert the flashed microSD into the RPi, attach the Pi2AES, plug in the power (at the Pi2AES; the RPi will draw juice from the Pi2AES).
    6. You should be able to find your new streamer via your mobile (or PC) if they're on the same network (browser: http://volumio.local). The set up process is straightforward unless you're connecting a NAS (ping us for help in this area).
    7. For DAC, I actually select the Allo DigiOne in Volumio for use even though it's a Pi2AES. There is no selection for Pi2AES at the moment, and the DigiOne option works.

    Considerations:
    1. I think using the ethernet is better than wifi (latency, signal strength, noise, etc.) but supposedly the Pi2AES will reject most of the noise from the Raspberry Pi board.
    2. I like to use a large USB thumb drive to store the music. I don't bother with NAS connectivity because mine is just slow. You can get crazy storage capabilities these days on a USB, and if you use Volumio the files will be immediately recognized.
    3. You can also get a DigiOne. I got the Pi2AES because of the I2S (via HDMI) which can go directly to a DAC that takes it (e.g., Matrix X Sabre Pro, PS Audio). And it also has AES.

    Hope this helps.

    EDITED: additional info
     
    Last edited: Jan 6, 2020
  19. blubliss

    blubliss Friend

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    Marv, those are the same three items I ordered recently and this thing is great. I'm using it with an RPi4.

    I've experimented with a couple images and have settled on Gentoo Player for now. The other ones like Volumio are easier but with gentoo it has an option to load the system into RAM and it seemed to sound better to me this way.

    I'm using it as a Roon bridge right now, very cool. Hook it into my network and AES to the Yggdrasil.

    One important thing, the audio device to choose in the image audio output settings is HiFiBerry Digi+ Pro for the Pi2AES. There is no Pi2AES driver but that one works.
     
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  20. Raicorl

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    ropieee might be the easiest way to use as roon endpoint > flash sdcard by ropieee's site instructions > enter http://ropieee.local/ web interface to setup Pi Hat > select Hifiberry Digi+ pro > go to Roon's setting then audio option you wil see the ropieee device, set it up and you are good to go.

    This is headless Pi setup, no keyboard mouse monitor required. Everything is remote control via web interface and Roon.
     
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