Tuesday, 06 September 2016 16:00

4PM Coffee: Raspberry Pi Music Edition

It's 4PM Coffee Time after a Long Weekend!

First of all, spending an overnight in a non-air conditioned house isn't fun.

From Sunday to Monday, we'd spent time with family, but the house we stayed in... well, I guess they didn't believe in using AC. Props to them for saving money, but I was miserable.

Sitting around dripping in your own sweat wasn't fun.

What's Going On: Raspberry Pi Running Rune Audio

raspberry pi rune audio shure se 215

It wasn't anything more than just for fun. I took on of my Raspberry Pi 2's and made a music center using Rune Audio, a free and open source (FOSS) on-network music player designed for high end audio.

The Raspberry Pi itself can play audio through the 3.5mm jack on the side or through the HDMI port, but it's far better when you use a DAC, and there's a few made for the Raspberry Pi.

Right now, since I don't have a DAC, and won't be able to purchase one until next weekend, I am just using the 3.5mm jack out, and it's decent, but not a true Audiophile's solution.

I got the Rune Audio build from www.rpimusicplayer.com, where you can download the build for free for all the Raspberry Pi types.

Once downloaded, I cleared off a memory card (using Ubuntu) and left the card unmounted.

Simply, I just ran one command to install the image to a 16GB microSD card:

sudo dd bs=4M if=RuneAudio_rpi2_rp3_0.4-beta_20160321_2GB.img of=/dev/mmcblk0

I followed the tutorial here: http://www.runeaudio.com/documentation/

The music library is available to me via web browser and phone app, so where ever in the house I am, I can always switch songs.

Rune Audio Raspberry Pi

Not for portable music, that's for sure...

What I found out in tinkering with this setup is that the Rasberry Pi running Rune Audio isn't really a good portable music solution. It's really evident because you need to have the pi on either a wired or wireless internet connection, and your computer or phone has to also be on the same network in order to control the song list.

The second thing is that it's not really built for headphones or earbuds by itself. The sound quality is ok, but you don't have control over the soundstage.

The Rune Audio Raspberry Pi is much better suited as a core piece to your home audio system. Running the pi with a DAC that feeds into your equipment which may include the Graphic EQ, amps and speakers is where the Pi really works.

Having the wireless control means being able to change playlists, songs or even source from whereever you are in the house.

So, in all, while it was fun to build, it probably won't stay a music player for long for me. I'll repurpose the Pi soon as something else.

skism black label xxl

What's In The Music Player: Black Label XXL - Mixed by SKisM

SKisM appears through the We Will Never Say Die Record Label

Not sure if you call it dubstep or what, but it's got powerful beats that sound really good on the TFZ Series 1S Earbuds.

Have a listen!