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NAS streaming to Chromecast Audio, controlled with iPhone?


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Hi all, I'm new to Computer Audiophile so apologies if this is an old subject - but I wonder if you can help?

 

My music collection is about to outgrow my Macbook and I was thinking of buying a NAS. Until now I have been streaming from iTunes on my Macbook to a Chromecast Audio, via Soundcast (and Soundflower). My music is a mix of MP3 and 16/44 AIFF files.

 

If I get a NAS, can I stream from that to the Chromecast Audio, using my iPhone (6s in case this is important) to control it?

 

If so, how?

 

Thanks a lot for any suggestions.

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One reliable method I can think of is to make sure you get a NAS that has the ability to run both the BubbleUPnP Server helper software (to provide the UPnP/DLNA or OpenHome renderer emulation for the Chromecast Audio) and any UPnP/DLNA media server of choice for music file streaming from the NAS (mine would be the excellent MinimServer):

BubbleUPnP Server

MinimServer features

That way, you can use either any standard UPnP/DLNA control point app or any OpenHome control point app on the iPhone for control.

 

Another method would be to get a NAS that has the ability to run the Logitech Media Server, normally used to provide music files for Squeezebox type streamers. By installing the CastBridge/squeeze2cast plugin component for LMS, you can then provide Squeezebox emulation for the Chromecast Audio, allowing you to control the playback with any Squeezebox controller iPhone app:

Announce: CastBridge = integrate Chromecast players with LMS (squeeze2cast)

We are far more united and have far more in common with each other than things that divide us.

-- Jo Cox

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I used a chrome cast audio and my nas. With my iPhone 6 the best app I found was creation5 you can get free or pay for ad free works well indeed :) also allows you to directly download music to your phone

 

Great thanks, I'll have a look at Creation 5

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One reliable method I can think of is to make sure you get a NAS that has the ability to run both the BubbleUPnP Server helper software (to provide the UPnP/DLNA or OpenHome renderer emulation for the Chromecast Audio) and any UPnP/DLNA media server of choice for music file streaming from the NAS (mine would be the excellent MinimServer):

BubbleUPnP Server

MinimServer features

That way, you can use either any standard UPnP/DLNA control point app or any OpenHome control point app on the iPhone for control.

 

Another method would be to get a NAS that has the ability to run the Logitech Media Server, normally used to provide music files for Squeezebox type streamers. By installing the CastBridge/squeeze2cast plugin component for LMS, you can then provide Squeezebox emulation for the Chromecast Audio, allowing you to control the playback with any Squeezebox controller iPhone app:

Announce: CastBridge = integrate Chromecast players with LMS (squeeze2cast)

 

Wow, thanks. I'm pretty new to this streaming game so seems I have some language to learn! Are there any NAS drives you'd recommend that would allow me to do this? I'd be looking for something with two 2TB drives, with the ability for one to mirror the other.

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Wow, thanks. I'm pretty new to this streaming game so seems I have some language to learn! Are there any NAS drives you'd recommend that would allow me to do this? I'd be looking for something with two 2TB drives, with the ability for one to mirror the other.

I'd just go with a good NAS with its own onboard DLNA server. I've been using a 4TB Western Digital My Cloud Mirror for about a year now, and it's absolutely great. The default setup is RAID1 (which I kept), but you can change that to whatever you want. It has an integral DLNA server that shows up on every DLNA device in my system, from the ancient Sony SMP-N100 in the kitchen to the 2016 Samsung 4k TV in the living room. It was very easy to set up, and so far it's been 100% reliable. All you need to do to get your media files onto your network is to turn on the DLNA server from the Media Settings screen, then turn on media streaming from the DLNA media server settings (the default setting is "off"). Then you can see a list of all the DLNA renderers (players) on your network, and you can turn streaming on to any or all of them by clicking the switches in that screen.

 

You can put Bubble on pretty much any device with a renderer (player), although it's easiest to use if it's on the server itself (i.e. the NAS). I run JRiver, so all I had to do was put the Bubble server on my main PC to get all my DLNA players into zones, except for my Asus Chromebox running Chrome OS, which didn't show up at all in JRMC (easily fixable now with ARC Welder from Google that lets you install Android apps on devices running Chrome OS, so you can put Bubble on a Chromebox or 'book too).

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I'd just go with a good NAS with its own onboard DLNA server. I've been using a 4TB Western Digital My Cloud Mirror for about a year now, and it's absolutely great. The default setup is RAID1 (which I kept), but you can change that to whatever you want. It has an integral DLNA server that shows up on every DLNA device in my system, from the ancient Sony SMP-N100 in the kitchen to the 2016 Samsung 4k TV in the living room. It was very easy to set up, and so far it's been 100% reliable. All you need to do to get your media files onto your network is to turn on the DLNA server from the Media Settings screen, then turn on media streaming from the DLNA media server settings (the default setting is "off"). Then you can see a list of all the DLNA renderers (players) on your network, and you can turn streaming on to any or all of them by clicking the switches in that screen.

 

You can put Bubble on pretty much any device with a renderer (player), although it's easiest to use if it's on the server itself (i.e. the NAS). I run JRiver, so all I had to do was put the Bubble server on my main PC to get all my DLNA players into zones, except for my Asus Chromebox running Chrome OS, which didn't show up at all in JRMC (easily fixable now with ARC Welder from Google that lets you install Android apps on devices running Chrome OS, so you can put Bubble on a Chromebox or 'book too).

 

Many thanks Bluesman - really helpful info. I'll take a look at the My Cloud. On another note I just discovered blues - am I right to assume you're a fan? Been listening to a lot of Muddy Waters. Anyone else you recommend?

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I'd just go with a good NAS with its own onboard DLNA server. I've been using a 4TB Western Digital My Cloud Mirror for about a year now, and it's absolutely great. The default setup is RAID1 (which I kept), but you can change that to whatever you want. It has an integral DLNA server that shows up on every DLNA device in my system, from the ancient Sony SMP-N100 in the kitchen to the 2016 Samsung 4k TV in the living room. It was very easy to set up, and so far it's been 100% reliable. All you need to do to get your media files onto your network is to turn on the DLNA server from the Media Settings screen, then turn on media streaming from the DLNA media server settings (the default setting is "off"). Then you can see a list of all the DLNA renderers (players) on your network, and you can turn streaming on to any or all of them by clicking the switches in that screen.

 

You can put Bubble on pretty much any device with a renderer (player), although it's easiest to use if it's on the server itself (i.e. the NAS). I run JRiver, so all I had to do was put the Bubble server on my main PC to get all my DLNA players into zones, except for my Asus Chromebox running Chrome OS, which didn't show up at all in JRMC (easily fixable now with ARC Welder from Google that lets you install Android apps on devices running Chrome OS, so you can put Bubble on a Chromebox or 'book too).

 

I don't think this will solve his issue of streaming to Chromecast.

Founder of Audiophile Style | My Audio Systems

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Many thanks Bluesman - really helpful info. I'll take a look at the My Cloud. On another note I just discovered blues - am I right to assume you're a fan? Been listening to a lot of Muddy Waters. Anyone else you recommend?

I'm a player - I've backed some fine artists over the years that I love & strongly recommend. You can find the old guys yourself. But there's a world of modern blues that's keeping the genre alive. Larry Garner is one fine bluesman and a great guy who writes and sings about our lives, as are Chris Cain, Shemekia Copeland, Larry McCray, Robben Ford, Kenny Neal, Michael Hill and many others. Grab some Little Charlie & the Night Cats, Fenton Robinson, Keri Leigh (especially her album called Arrival), Little Milton, T-Bone Walker, Koko Taylor, and Lucky Peterson.

 

Some of the older guys are not so obvious. Try Joe Williams (incredible blues with Count Basie and with the Thad Jones - Mel Lewis Orchestra), Jimmy Witherspoon, Otis Rush and even Ray Charles (specifically the albums Rare Genius and Genius plus Soul = Jazz). Other classics you may like include Jimmy Rushing, Clarence "Gatemouth" Brown and, of course, Stevie Ray Vaughan (as well as his older brother Jimmy, who's still alive and sounds great - his group is called the Fabulous Thunderbirds, and they've been around for many years).

 

Check out "Roomful of Blues" for great horns and a tight big band feel to classic and modern blues. Find some Albert Collins, a little Clarence Spady, Son Seal, Luther Allison, and Coco Montoya. You'll be groovin' 'til the cows come home!

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Highly recommend Synology + the excellent MinimServer, and Plex Media Server, takes care of all audio and video. I've never really needed the BubbleUPnP Server though.

 

I stream to 4 Chromecast Audio devices around home, works perfect.

 

Raspberry Pi + MinimServer makes for an excellent budget solution too.

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

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Highly recommend Synology + the excellent MinimServer, and Plex Media Server, takes care of all audio and video. I've never really needed the BubbleUPnP Server though.

 

I stream to 4 Chromecast Audio devices around home, works perfect.

 

Raspberry Pi + MinimServer makes for an excellent budget solution too.

 

Thanks - I use Plex for streaming films to my TV, but I've never got on with it for music - it doesn't seem to recognise AIFF files. Do you know of a workaround for this?

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I'm a player - I've backed some fine artists over the years that I love & strongly recommend. You can find the old guys yourself. But there's a world of modern blues that's keeping the genre alive. Larry Garner is one fine bluesman and a great guy who writes and sings about our lives, as are Chris Cain, Shemekia Copeland, Larry McCray, Robben Ford, Kenny Neal, Michael Hill and many others. Grab some Little Charlie & the Night Cats, Fenton Robinson, Keri Leigh (especially her album called Arrival), Little Milton, T-Bone Walker, Koko Taylor, and Lucky Peterson.

 

Some of the older guys are not so obvious. Try Joe Williams (incredible blues with Count Basie and with the Thad Jones - Mel Lewis Orchestra), Jimmy Witherspoon, Otis Rush and even Ray Charles (specifically the albums Rare Genius and Genius plus Soul = Jazz). Other classics you may like include Jimmy Rushing, Clarence "Gatemouth" Brown and, of course, Stevie Ray Vaughan (as well as his older brother Jimmy, who's still alive and sounds great - his group is called the Fabulous Thunderbirds, and they've been around for many years).

 

Check out "Roomful of Blues" for great horns and a tight big band feel to classic and modern blues. Find some Albert Collins, a little Clarence Spady, Son Seal, Luther Allison, and Coco Montoya. You'll be groovin' 'til the cows come home!

 

Thank you so much. Really appreciate it. That's my weekend sorted!

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Thanks - I use Plex for streaming films to my TV, but I've never got on with it for music - it doesn't seem to recognise AIFF files. Do you know of a workaround for this?

 

No sorry, I use Plex for video only. Works great with Chromecast, Roku, etc.

 

For audio on the NAS, I use and recommend MinimServer.

 

That said Plex should support AIFF, perhas their support can be of help. Alternative would be to convert to FLAC.

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

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I use Plex music server on my NAS for all my music. We have a Windows PC, a Mac, an iPhone an iPad and an Android phone and we can control playback just fine from all of those, using the appropriate Plex app. Can also access the music library remotely, over the internet. Plex claims to support AIFF, but the Chromecast does not. Normally Plex would automatically transcode AIFF files when casting. I bit the bullet and converted my whole library to FLAC (or rather the computer did it while I was at the beach). That way there is guaranteed to be no transcoding.

Not everything that can be counted counts, and not everything that counts can be counted.

- Einstein

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Transcoding in itself does not mean that there'll be any loss of data. It depends on the file format and resolution the original file is being transcoded to. If the transcoded to format is a lossless type and the original file's sample rate & bit depth is maintained, then there should be no loss of data.

We are far more united and have far more in common with each other than things that divide us.

-- Jo Cox

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Highly recommend Synology + the excellent MinimServer, and Plex Media Server, takes care of all audio and video. I've never really needed the BubbleUPnP Server though.

 

I stream to 4 Chromecast Audio devices around home, works perfect.

 

Raspberry Pi + MinimServer makes for an excellent budget solution too.

The BubbleUPnP Server would allow you to stream from MinimServer (or any other UPnP/DLNA media server) to the Chromecast devices using any UPnP/DLNA controller app. However, as you were already Plex for video it certainly made sense to also use its built-in support for your Chromecast Audios.

We are far more united and have far more in common with each other than things that divide us.

-- Jo Cox

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Transcoding in itself does not mean that there'll be any loss of data. It depends on the file format and resolution the original file is being transcoded to. If the transcoded to format is a lossless type and the original file's sample rate & bit depth is maintained, then there should be no loss of data.

I like to avoid transcoding, because once it is happening, it's hard to be sure that the transmitted data isn't being compressed or downsampled. There seems to be some doubt, for instance, whether Soundcast isn't compressing on the fly.

 

As you put it in an earlier thread:

 

It's not that the CCA may be receiving a file that's not intact. I was referring to the music file that has been deliberately altered to a different resolution and/or even a different audio file type altogether (eg lossless wav to lossy mp3) - ie still 'intact', by the sending media server on the fly while streaming - aka transcoding.

 

Some media servers have been designed to allow the user full control in setting the transcoder, others haven't, or don't make it obvious that it will automatically (& therefore unexpectedly) transcode under certain circumstances. For example, the Windows built-in/WMP DLNA server is known for being transcoder trigger-happy.

 

BTW, Plex is one of those servers which allow you to specify whether to transcode or not, subject to the compatibility of the file format with the renderer.

Not everything that can be counted counts, and not everything that counts can be counted.

- Einstein

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Fair enough, if in doubt... I'm rather spoilt using MinimServer, which certainly does give you full, clear and easy control over its optional transcoder module, MinimStreamer.

We are far more united and have far more in common with each other than things that divide us.

-- Jo Cox

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Thanks all - is it possible to install bubble and minim on my MacBook to try it all out before taking the plunge and buying a NAS? Also, what control apps do you recommend? Any out there that are built for both iOS and OS X? I hear good things about iPeng, but is that just for Squeezebox?

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I have to ask what is the benefit of adding all these processes in when I have a nas with dnla (wd mybook thing) an app that points the chrome cast audio were to go and works with out having a pc running etc etc ?

 

Sorry carlymart. This is a good point. Thanks for reminding of your early post. How does creation5 deal with tagging and iTunes playlists? Aware of any issues?

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Thanks all - is it possible to install bubble and minim on my MacBook to try it all out before taking the plunge and buying a NAS? Also, what control apps do you recommend? Any out there that are built for both iOS and OS X? I hear good things about iPeng, but is that just for Squeezebox?
Definitely, see install instructions for Mac (both require you also have installed the Java Runtime):

http://www.bubblesoftapps.com/bubbleupnpserver/#mac_install

http://minimserver.com/install-macosx-mserver.html

 

iPeng is Squeezebox only, but if you really want to use it with the Chromecast Audio you could go the LMS plus Castbridge plugin method I mentioned earlier (post #3).

 

For the BubbleUPnP Server method which allows you to use OpenHome controllers, I'd recommend the Linn Kazoo or the Lumin apps.

We are far more united and have far more in common with each other than things that divide us.

-- Jo Cox

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