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From Brixel - Hackerspace Hasselt
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Project: Musicbox
Description: Convert an existing raspberry pi into a musicbox.
Status: On hold
Participants: Berend
Expertise: Raspberry pi, OAuth, Streaming audio
Edit tags: Musicbox



The objective of this project is to be able to stream audio from any streaming services available. The box should be controllable via a mouse/keyboard interface, but also via a webinterface (or even better, an API).

Items needed

  • Raspberry pi
    • SD-card with enough storage
    • Distribution that can cover the before mentioned goal
  • LCD Display (Optional)

First option

Play-pi https://github.com/fredley/play-pi The play-pi program seemed like a good option, since you can install it on any Linux-distro. It's only a front-end for the Google Play Music-store, so it's still streaming from the internet, and only limited to this service. However, since I am an avid user of Google Play, this was not a restriction.

The installation

Downloading the program wasn't really a problem, since it's on Github. Just an ordinary git-pull did the trick. Configuring play-pi was pretty easy, it's good documented on the pages. The only thing they advise you to do, is use Two-Way-Authentication from Google. But this is a straight-forward thing to do, so not really an issue.

Running the program

This worked pretty slow, since it needed to deploy a webservice on it's own. However, this was so slow on the Pi, it took almost 5 minutes to preload a 3 minute song. This worked, the music started playing. Well, the controls showed this. There was no audio-output, since the display was connected via HDMI and the pi auto-selects this output as default. Forcing the audio-output to use the audio-jack was an easy task. When this was changed, it worked. The music started playing.

First conclusion

The installation was easy, just as configuring the program itself. But, waiting for the music to load was really annoying, so this is not an option.

Second option

Pi Musicbox I came along this option during the first search, but since I wanted a clean distro with a program, I passed this. I will try this option next.