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Thread Listing » Electronics, Gadgets, and the Internet
Do it yourself, free, open source Airtunes
#1945 by briantech (1.0000) posted on 5:07pm Monday, December 21st, 2009
This took a bit of doing, but I got it figured out.
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It is, what I assume, a fairly common problem: You have music on your computer, but you have your good speakers hooked up to a receiver in another room. How do you play music from the computer to that receiver, other than running a long fucking 3.5mm audio cable across your house?
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Apple of course has Airtunes with their Airport routers. Plug the router into the receiver, any computer on the network can play music to it. Nice.
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Well, I'm a cheap son of a bitch, and I'm also stupid. Those two things combined meant I was gonna try and find a free, open source, linux based solution. Wooo!!!
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Turns out there is this thing called EsounD - The Enlightened Sound Daemon. A simple apt-get on the linux box was all it took to get the "client" up and running. It's got an optical audio out to the receiver, and its hooked into my household 10/100 network too obviously.
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Then you install the OSX version as well on your mac. On top of that there is this program called SoundFlower that lets you go into the OSX System Settings and change your audio output to pipe into the ESD that is running.
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Then you pipe the esdrec channel to the esdcat channel -- and whammo, your entire audio output is streamed over your network to the receiving box hooked up to the speakers.
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I won't go into all the details, but a pretty good step-by-step can be found here:
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At first it wasn't that great -- since its such a low level solution, any sort of packet interruption is going to give you pauses and hiccups, since its not doing any kind of software buffering for the audio on either end.
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So I went in and changed the QoS settings on my router to give highest priority to the port this is all running on, and all problems cleared up. And I can still pull down 25+ mbit speed tests on my laptop!
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Next time you guys come over we'll have to test it out :) It sounds great, too -- since I've got the broadcast set to do 192kb/s, which is about as high as any of my mp3s even go.
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#1946 by justin (0.9994) posted on 5:26pm Monday, December 21st, 2009
briantech said:
Turns out there is this thing called EsounD - The Enlightened Sound Daemon. A simple apt-get on the linux box was all it took to get the "client" up and running. It's got an optical audio out to the receiver, and its hooked into my household 10/100 network too obviously.
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There is hardware? Doesn't sound free, unless you mean "Freedom of Speech".
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#1948 by briantech (1.0000) posted on 5:27pm Monday, December 21st, 2009
yeah, free as in free and open source software.
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The hardware was, actually, free. But thats another story.
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#1952 by justin (0.9994) posted on 7:25pm Monday, December 21st, 2009
The part about you being cheap confused me, I guess. That's cool that you got it to work. Do you know what the hardware would cost otherwise, since I doubt I could get it for the same low cost as you.
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#1953 by briantech (1.0000) posted on 7:27pm Monday, December 21st, 2009
Well I mean, what are we counting here?
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Macbook Pro - $2k
Linux Box - $199 a year ago
Receiver and Speakers - $350
Linksys Wireless Router - $35
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The reason I consider it to be basically free is that most people already have all this stuff just sitting around their house. Dont' they?
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#1954 by justin (0.9994) posted on 7:29pm Monday, December 21st, 2009
What is the part that has the optical audio out?
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#1955 by briantech (1.0000) posted on 7:29pm Monday, December 21st, 2009
The linux computer
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#1956 by briantech (1.0000) posted on 7:30pm Monday, December 21st, 2009
Also has a hauppage TV card in it too... but that isn't necessary. Nice for when you want to watch "movies" on your tv that you "downloaded" "illegally"
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#1957 by justin (0.9994) posted on 7:30pm Monday, December 21st, 2009
Oh, okay. The only extra computer I have around at the moment is a p2 450, which might be able to do the job. The fan would be louder than the speakers, though. :/
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#1958 by briantech (1.0000) posted on 7:32pm Monday, December 21st, 2009
Yeah if you don't have an extra computer just sitting around, then Airtunes is probably the way to go.
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But, if you already had a computer hooked up to your TV and your receiver like I did, and didn't want to spend an extra $$ on airtunes, this works :)
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#1959 by justin (0.9994) posted on 7:34pm Monday, December 21st, 2009
The reason I'm so interested, and the problem with AirTunes, is that it only plays the music from iTunes. This is a pain in the ass for me, but I think would be a bigger problem for you since you listen to music from websites more than I do.
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#1960 by briantech (1.0000) posted on 7:36pm Monday, December 21st, 2009
Ah yeah, I do listen to hypemachine a lot.
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On that link I mentioned above, there's actually some other piece of software that you can pay (some marginal amount of money) for, that lets you have application-specific audio out put control, so you could set firefox and itunes to run through ESD, but your IM program to use your normal speakers. That seems like the ultimate setup, but what I've got now works far to well for me to mess with it.
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#1961 by justin (0.9994) posted on 7:37pm Monday, December 21st, 2009
That does sound quite good. I know there's a solution to the problem, I just haven't needed to pay for it yet. I actually bought an app a long time ago called Pandora Jam that will output to AirTunes too.
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#1965 by gtyellow (0.9772) posted on 9:16pm Tuesday, December 22nd, 2009
Sucks up too much juice. I'd rather get this
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I dunno how big your music collection is, but there are cheap MP3 players out there you can use to backup your music and or connect to your stereo. I'd get the sqeezebox personally.
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--
I pee on cultural norms and spit at social faux pas
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#1966 by briantech (1.0000) posted on 5:20pm Wednesday, December 23rd, 2009
Can they play music from the world wide web?
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Thread Listing » Electronics, Gadgets, and the Internet » Do it yourself, free, open source Airtunes

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