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Do I need 2 Music Streamers or are there other options in this setup...


skvinson
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I am getting ready to move. My main system will be in the living room, a combo home theater and 2-channel system (including a preamp with HT bypass). I will have another system in my office. They are far apart. The living room in on the first floor; the office is in my bedroom, on the third floor. I want to be able to play ripped FLACs and Tidal at both spots. I also want the ability to control things from a smart phone or tablet, b/c I will be listening to both at times out of sight of the streamer (e.g., through headphones with an extension cable on the bedroom balcony). Most or even all of the time when I am listening in the bedroom, I will have my laptop with me. That will not be the case in the living room. I currently have a Squeezebox. It is one of the first models. Great sound, b/c I had it mod'd, but no Tidal support. I don't know if there is anyway it plays into the mix

 

So, I hope that is enough details to ask - Will I need two music streamers? Is there anyway to buy one, place it in the living room system, but be able to access both the FLACs and Tidal from my office/bedroom? Or, will the living room be totally separate, but my laptop will function as the 'brain' for upstairs?

 

As I said, I've had a Squeezebox for a long time, but I am not familiar with newer systems.

 

Thanks!

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There is something called the ickstream plugin for LMS /SB which you can use to make Tidal available on a Squeezebox system. I don't have experience with the older SB units, but I assume it will work.

 

You can buy something like the Sonore Sonic Orbiter that would be a good squeezebox replacement. Or a microcomputer like the Raspberry Pi or the Cubox can have SB software loaded on it and be a SB replacement. There are SB phone apps that wiil playback on your phone, tablet, or laptop if you have a server of some type running SB server.

Main listening (small home office):

Main setup: Surge protector +_iFi  AC iPurifiers >Isol-8 Mini sub Axis Power Conditioning+Isolation>QuietPC Low Noise Server>Roon (Audiolense DRC)>Stack Audio Link II>Kii Control>Kii Three >GIK Room Treatments.

Secondary Listening: Server with Audiolense RC>RPi4 or analog>Matrix Element i Streamer/DAC (XLR)+Schiit Freya>Kii Three .

Bedroom: SBTouch to Cambridge Soundworks Desktop Setup.
Living Room/Kitchen: RPi 3B+ running RoPieee to a pair of Morel Hogtalare. 

All absolute statements about audio are false :)

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I can't get Spotify on my Squeezebox model, so I'm sure I can't get Tidal. The other elements look interesting... I just learned about the Raspberry Pi on another thread I started. I'm still trying to figure it out - Do I need an actual Logitech player with it, or can I just load LMS on it? If that is the case, would this work:

 

* Get 2 Raspberry Pi's, one for my living room and one for my bedroom. Load LMS on both. Get SB apps for my phone and/or tablets to control both.

* Put my FLAC files on a hard drive, connected to my router. Wirelessly access that hard drive from both Raspberry Pi's.

* Output each Pi to a DAC to a Preamp to an Amp. Listen to speakers or headphones through the amp.

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I can't get Spotify on my Squeezebox model, so I'm sure I can't get Tidal. The other elements look interesting... I just learned about the Raspberry Pi on another thread I started. I'm still trying to figure it out - Do I need an actual Logitech player with it, or can I just load LMS on it? If that is the case, would this work:

 

* Get 2 Raspberry Pi's, one for my living room and one for my bedroom. Load LMS on both. Get SB apps for my phone and/or tablets to control both.

* Put my FLAC files on a hard drive, connected to my router. Wirelessly access that hard drive from both Raspberry Pi's.

* Output each Pi to a DAC to a Preamp to an Amp. Listen to speakers or headphones through the amp.

 

Something like the Pi would be the HW replacement for an SB unit.

 

You need the SBS/LMS server running somewhere on your network where it can run, process audio, and access your music library (it could be on one of the Pi units, or on some other computer functioning as a central server).

 

In addition, for playback from a specific piece of HW you need either LMS or some emulator of it like Squeezelite, Squeezeplay, or one of the tablet/phone apps. You don't need actual Logitech HW, just LMS (SB) server on at least one device and some sort of compatible playback software on each addiional device.

 

Your plan looks like it should work fine. You might get better perfomance if you use one of the Pi's as the server. Connect the USB drive to it instead of the router. But that you will only know after trying it out. I'm mentioning this b/c some routers don't work well in practice in your scenario. If you don't have something to use as a server, a PI is so cheap and small it might be worth having a third one + USB HD just to leave on 24/7 as a standalone server.

Main listening (small home office):

Main setup: Surge protector +_iFi  AC iPurifiers >Isol-8 Mini sub Axis Power Conditioning+Isolation>QuietPC Low Noise Server>Roon (Audiolense DRC)>Stack Audio Link II>Kii Control>Kii Three >GIK Room Treatments.

Secondary Listening: Server with Audiolense RC>RPi4 or analog>Matrix Element i Streamer/DAC (XLR)+Schiit Freya>Kii Three .

Bedroom: SBTouch to Cambridge Soundworks Desktop Setup.
Living Room/Kitchen: RPi 3B+ running RoPieee to a pair of Morel Hogtalare. 

All absolute statements about audio are false :)

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Depends on your content, but if its limited to 24/96 then check out Chromecast Audio. Limited to 24/96 and optical inputs, but has a decent DAC and works wonderfully as a streamer. Works really well with Tidal too.

 

Pi is obviously an option, lots of LMS distros, but you'll need a server running too. So basically you are looking at a 2 PC setup, though I've heard that you can have the server and the SB/Squeezelite distro running on the same Pi, but I've not played around with it.

 

The Pi 3 though with inbuilt Wi-Fi and Bluetooth certainly throws up a lot of opportunities to run multiple streamers for cheap.

 

Personally I prefer CCA as in addition to local streaming I can also stream a ton of radio stations and internet streaming stations on it. I listen to a lot of Spotify, IHeartRadio, Tidal, etc. on it.

Next to the Word of God, the noble art of music is the greatest treasure in the world - Martin Luther

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Is there anyway to buy one, place it in the living room system, but be able to access both the FLACs and Tidal from my office/bedroom?

I'm not sure why no one has suggested this, but JRiver Media Center seems to offer everything you need. You only need one streamer, and that would be the primary device on which you run JRMC. You can run JRMC on a PC, Mac, or Linux box with almost any CPU under the hood - I run it on a Windows PC, a Linux PC, a Beaglebone Black (Debian), a Raspberry Pi (Raspbian), and an Asus Chromebox (Ubuntu). Each device with JRMC on your network will show up as a JR zone - you can play a different program on each at the same time or play the same thing in synchrony on 2 or more by linking the zones. There's even a time alignment adjustment to perfectly synchronize playback across zones and eliminate any audible delays. I can walk through our apartment and listen to the same music coming from devices in the kitchen, living room, den, master bedroom and tasting room (as our enclosed 6x19 patio is now known).

 

You can use your laptop as your main JRMC server and control every device on the network from it as well as stream to it for local listening, Although I've never done it because I have JRMC on each of my devices, JR also recognizes DLNA clients (player programs also called renderers in the jargon) on your network. I believe you can also use them as zones. Be aware that most players (at least the free ones I've tried) are not DLNA clients, e.g. Rune, MPD, Daphile etc - so they won't appear as zones without additional plug-ins etc. But some, like MPD, can apparently be made to act as DLNA clients and are therefore usable as JRMC players and zones. I'm pretty sure you can use WhiteBear as a DLNA front end for your Squeezebox, too. If so, you could stream from JRMC to that as well.

 

JRemote is a great mobile device app that will let you control all zones independently or together, and you can stream to the device as yet another zone. Although I love JR's no-cost Gizmo & WebGizmo for remote streaming, JRemote ($10, as I recall) is ideal for zone management and control.

 

Spotify works great for me on this system, and I'm told that Tidal is equally easy to stream via the current version of JRMC (I've never tried it).

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