John Karr on 26 Sep 2017 20:32:05 -0700

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[PLUG] Open Source Whole House Audio Streaming Alternatives to Sonos, Chromecast

A friend of mine recently turned me on to ChromeCast Audio for creating a whole hose audio streaming system, at about 3% what the very proprietary and restrictive Sonos system would cost to do the same. Now that my appetite is whetted, ChromeCast Audio has a lot of shortcomings:

 * poor quality integrated DAC
 * only supports wireless connection and has frequent dropouts
 * undocumented API (based on DLNA protocol)
 * need Google's Home Application on Andriod to manage them
 * linux driver (pulse-dlna) has audible click switching tracks during playback from VLC (and Clementine my preferred player doesn't seem to want to send audio there at all).

There are a number of premium sound cards available for raspberry pi along with the ability to connect a higher quality dac via usb or optical out add ons. I've found a number of different programs out there that might be usable to create a better system to upgrade from ChromeCast.

The question is has anyone used Raspberry Pi or similar devices to create a whole house audio network? What software (preferably FOSS) and hardware did you use?

To clearly state the problem I'm trying to solve: I have 3 stereos around my house and I want to be able to transmit audio without lag to all of my speakers at once. My house is already wired with ethernet in every room. I have a huge local digital music library which I want to play.

I prefer an ethernet based solution to running a lot of new wires to create a system that cannot easily be reconfigured (if I wanted to movie the master player or add more amplifiers and speakers)

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