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  #1  
Old 02-14-2012, 01:59 PM
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ericscottf ericscottf is offline
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Whole home audio- what i think i'm looking for...

Hi all

I've been reading around here about sonos, squeeze, nuvo... They all seem to do way more than i'm looking for... Over-egging the pudding for me.

Can anyone recommend a product that is/does the following:

wireless is not necessary -- i prefer wired.
has a box that chats with my media server over the network, pulling audio out of shared folders.
Has child boxes that plug into amps and/or speakers and the network to chat with the main box and play music pulled through the main box

or

boxes that sit on the network and talk to the media server, pulling music and putting it out to an amp or speakers.

I guess the only tricky part of my idea is the interface. maybe the main box has an internal webserver that you can access from any smart device inside the house to set up what you want specific sub-units to play?

Or, in other words, how do i get unique music to different rooms in my house, and control it with some reasonable interface that i can get on most devices in my house (phones, comps, pads, etc)?.... cheap-ish. Wired is preferred to wireless.

thanks!
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  #2  
Old 02-14-2012, 02:02 PM
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Subsonic maybe? http://subsonic.org/ will do phones/comps/pads but I'm not sure about your more generic "box" needs.
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  #3  
Old 02-14-2012, 02:06 PM
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ericscottf ericscottf is offline
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Hm, so make a box for each room and install this on it?
+1 for simplicity
-1 for difficulty/inability to control rooms remotely.
hm.
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  #4  
Old 02-14-2012, 02:06 PM
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PiX64 PiX64 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by darcilicious View Post
Subsonic maybe? http://subsonic.org/ will do phones/comps/pads but I'm not sure about your more generic "box" needs.
I have been using subsonic for a long time and I must put my .02 in.. its bad ass!
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  #5  
Old 02-14-2012, 02:08 PM
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I haven't done it myself but there is this statement:

Quote:
Supports multiple simultaneous players. Manage any player from any location.
Under Versatile on this page: http://www.subsonic.org/pages/features.jsp
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on HP Media Center 8400F (Phenom 9500 QuadCore 2.2GHz, nVidia GeForce 8500 GT)
via Olevia 247TFHD/Onyko TX-SR606/Harmony 550/HP MediaSmart EX490 WHS w/12TB
Plex Media Server v0.9.9.5 on HP Touchsmart Envy 23 d16qd
Sonos Play:3, Connect / SimpleTV v2 / Roku 2 XS+Plex / iPhone 5 / iPad 2
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  #6  
Old 02-14-2012, 02:36 PM
gopher gopher is offline
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Do your players/streams need to be in sync? If so, I don't believe that subsonic will support this.
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  #7  
Old 02-14-2012, 02:40 PM
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ericscottf ericscottf is offline
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I don't think i care about that...
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1x HDHR (dual tuner) <- Verizon wire
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Gig-E wired network
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  #8  
Old 02-14-2012, 03:03 PM
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panteragstk panteragstk is offline
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Subsonic is fantastic. I really like it for mobile streaming. I don't use it for whole house audio. I'll end up going the Sonos route for that.
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  #9  
Old 02-14-2012, 03:04 PM
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What is your reason for that?
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1TB RAID 10 Promise TX4310, 1TB external USB
2x HD PVR (1.05.301 whql working flawlessly) <-Verizon FIOS HD QIP7100 2 cable box controlled by USB-UIRT 2 zones
1x HDHR (dual tuner) <- Verizon wire
3x HD200 wired latest beta fw
Gig-E wired network
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  #10  
Old 02-14-2012, 03:12 PM
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Wow, I'd have to say that subsonic is all grown-up these days. I'm definitely going to play with this tonight: http://www.subsonic.org/pages/apps.jsp#subsonicchannel among others
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SageTV Server 7.1.x w/Gemstone and Plex Home Theater v1.0.10 w/PlexPass
HD-PVR w/v1.5.6 drivers / Hauppauge IR blaster / FiOS Extreme HD / Motorola QIP6200 / SPDIF+720p Fixed Output
on HP Media Center 8400F (Phenom 9500 QuadCore 2.2GHz, nVidia GeForce 8500 GT)
via Olevia 247TFHD/Onyko TX-SR606/Harmony 550/HP MediaSmart EX490 WHS w/12TB
Plex Media Server v0.9.9.5 on HP Touchsmart Envy 23 d16qd
Sonos Play:3, Connect / SimpleTV v2 / Roku 2 XS+Plex / iPhone 5 / iPad 2
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  #11  
Old 02-14-2012, 03:34 PM
perf perf is offline
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The main feature of a good multi-room solution is being able to sync the zones/rooms. It is necessary if you walk around the house or if doors are open between rooms. And it is not trivial to implement. Sonos has always done it perfectly. Squeeze had problems in the early years - I guess they have fixed that now.

The other main issue is how you want to control the system - from any point in the house, or just at the currently playing device. Sonos separates playback from control completely - which is mostly great, but can sometimes be annoying (where is the iPhone so I can switch songs....).
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  #12  
Old 02-14-2012, 03:42 PM
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stanger89 stanger89 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ericscottf View Post
Hi all

I've been reading around here about sonos, squeeze, nuvo... They all seem to do way more than i'm looking for... Over-egging the pudding for me.

Can anyone recommend a product that is/does the following:

wireless is not necessary -- i prefer wired.
has a box that chats with my media server over the network, pulling audio out of shared folders.
Has child boxes that plug into amps and/or speakers and the network to chat with the main box and play music pulled through the main box

or

boxes that sit on the network and talk to the media server, pulling music and putting it out to an amp or speakers.

I guess the only tricky part of my idea is the interface. maybe the main box has an internal webserver that you can access from any smart device inside the house to set up what you want specific sub-units to play?

Or, in other words, how do i get unique music to different rooms in my house, and control it with some reasonable interface that i can get on most devices in my house (phones, comps, pads, etc)?.... cheap-ish. Wired is preferred to wireless.

thanks!
Why not Squeezebox? It seems to do everything you list, there's Android apps to control it (I assume IOS ones as well) you can control any player from a web browser in any network connected PC. And there's lots of ways to "build" clients, there's Softsqueeze and Squeezeslave which you can run on any windows/linux/mac PC and use it as a device.

There's even the Squeeze Slave plugin for the HD200/HD300s
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  #13  
Old 02-15-2012, 08:07 AM
aweber1nj aweber1nj is offline
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Although I would assume that everyone in this thread is fairly technical, and so the complexity of setup/configuration is probably not a major issue, I have to say my Sonos system is just such a joy to setup and use. Especially if you have a non-technical spouse or kids, it's just really well done; technically and user-friendliness.

Yes it's going to give you a lot more features than you're looking for, but if it's even remotely within your budget, it's just a great system.
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  #14  
Old 02-15-2012, 08:50 AM
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panteragstk panteragstk is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ericscottf View Post
What is your reason for that?
To be honest Sonos will do everything I could want it to do. That's pretty much it. I've had whole house audio before that wasn't flexible at all. What was playing in one room had to be played in all. Sonos can do that and more.
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Bedroom: Xiomi Mi Box, Sage Mini Client, 42" Panasonic PZ800u
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  #15  
Old 02-15-2012, 09:38 AM
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I installed ceiling speakers in non-sleeping rooms supplied by a robust amp in the basement next to the SageTV box on which runs Winamp and Airfoil. Each room (total of five) has volume control hardwired speakers. Airfoil has computer clients but the main thing it will do and is used for is to sync all connected computer devices. We only have two computers (sometimes an extra laptop or two) so from computer to computer, room to room and floor to floor the music is in sync. We want the same music everywhere and not different play list in each room. We change playlist for mood or occasion.

Bottom line for this installation is no hardware box in the room, no free standing speakers, computer is not necessary for playback and can be controlled remotely. I use a laptop or android phone/tablet for playlists. I also use aWARremote on the android phone/tablet to manage Winamp remotely.

The only real drawback is when new music is brought into the house it must be copied to the server before it can be "broadcast" to the rest of the house but this really only takes a couple minutes.
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  #16  
Old 02-15-2012, 10:52 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jbrandon View Post
I installed ceiling speakers in non-sleeping rooms supplied by a robust amp in the basement next to the SageTV box on which runs Winamp and Airfoil. Each room (total of five) has volume control hardwired speakers. Airfoil has computer clients but the main thing it will do and is used for is to sync all connected computer devices. We only have two computers (sometimes an extra laptop or two) so from computer to computer, room to room and floor to floor the music is in sync. We want the same music everywhere and not different play list in each room. We change playlist for mood or occasion.

Bottom line for this installation is no hardware box in the room, no free standing speakers, computer is not necessary for playback and can be controlled remotely. I use a laptop or android phone/tablet for playlists. I also use aWARremote on the android phone/tablet to manage Winamp remotely.

The only real drawback is when new music is brought into the house it must be copied to the server before it can be "broadcast" to the rest of the house but this really only takes a couple minutes.
That airfoil software looks awesome. I'd rather use that than sonos. It seems to work the same way. Especially since I'll have a pc in almost all locations anyway. Thanks for that.
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Bedroom: Xiomi Mi Box, Sage Mini Client, 42" Panasonic PZ800u
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  #17  
Old 02-15-2012, 11:42 AM
mxg mxg is offline
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Below is what I did in my house. I had the benefit of pre-wiring my house.

XP PC (with reasonable sound card) running Squeeze Server (Logitech now) located in my basement, under the stairs. The line out of the PC is connected to three daisy chained distribution amplifiers to enable 19 zones of perfectly synched music through the entire house).
(see: http://www.cablestogo.com/product.as...3118&sku=41067)

My current zones include:
Bedrooms (3) – 2nd floor
Master Bedroom (HTPC + Altec Lansing MX5021) – 2nd floor
Loft – (HTPC + Corsair SP2500) 2nd floor
Office – (Computer + Corsair SP2500) 1st floor
Dining Room (Altec Lansing MX5021 on stands) - 1st floor
Living Room (Altec Lansing MX5021 on stands) - 1st floor
Kitchen (Altec Lansing MX5021 installed above the cabinets) - 1st floor  of all zones, this is the most used (daily). Family Room is close second.
Sunroom (Altec Lansing MX5021 on stands) - 1st floor
Family Room (HTPC + Corsair SP2500s x 3. Front, centre & rears for 5.1) – first floor
(A glimpse into speaker Corsair installation can be found here – posted jpg too: http://forum.corsair.com/v3/showthread.php?t=98397 )
Garage (old Sony mini-system) – outside
Patio – (old “portable” Sony mini system) – outside.
Future is in the basement… when it’s developed – currently unfinished.

How do I get the signal from amplifies to my zones?
Output from the distribution amps are passed to the various zones using Cat 5 wiring via RCA 110 connectors on wall plates (homedepot sells them). Easy, easy, easy install!
(http://www.smarthomeusa.com/ShopByMa...Item/40735-RR/ )

Yes, I did bury Cat 5 (audio) + Cat 6 cables underground in conduit from the house to the patio and have a wooden post with Internet + audio only jacks. (outside music is in perfect synch with inside music!).

Connect powered speaker to wall plate using mini jack from speaker to RCA… and viola – perfectly synchronized music.
Any zones with a computer will have the audio signal routed through the Line-In of the sound card. Sound card control is done via Keyboard shorts (remote control) using “Power Mixer” (http://www.actualsolution.com/) This is a great piece of software, especially if you need to control multiple sound cards (like my main HTPC – stereo and 5.1).

Zones with HTPCs or PCs allow me to shut off the “house audio feed” (line-in off) and play “local” music (or watch TV) for that zone if desired.

Since I’m using the Squeeze server software, any Smartphone, tablet or computer (HTPC) can control the music playing via web browser (Blackberry is used when on the patio). For better UI, I did install the Squeeze Play software on each of the PCs/HTPCs.

Powered computer speakers that I use:
1) Altec Lansing MX5021 has remote (http://www.alteclansing.com/computer...1/invt/mx5021/)
2) Corsair SP2500 – Awesome! ( http://www.corsair.com/pc-computer-a...er-system.html )
3) Had a pair of ProMedia GMX in the office – they died last month (http://www.ebay.com/ctg/Klipsch-ProM...kers-/66782971 )

As you can tell, I decided to go totally with computer hardware for control and sound. I am very happy with the value I achieved compared to multi-thousands that can be spent on similar solutions. Plus, this route allowed for full media centre and Home Automation (not discussed) opportunities.

Good luck.


Quote:
Originally Posted by ericscottf View Post
Hi all

I've been reading around here about sonos, squeeze, nuvo... They all seem to do way more than i'm looking for... Over-egging the pudding for me.

Can anyone recommend a product that is/does the following:

wireless is not necessary -- i prefer wired.
has a box that chats with my media server over the network, pulling audio out of shared folders.
Has child boxes that plug into amps and/or speakers and the network to chat with the main box and play music pulled through the main box

or

boxes that sit on the network and talk to the media server, pulling music and putting it out to an amp or speakers.

I guess the only tricky part of my idea is the interface. maybe the main box has an internal webserver that you can access from any smart device inside the house to set up what you want specific sub-units to play?

Or, in other words, how do i get unique music to different rooms in my house, and control it with some reasonable interface that i can get on most devices in my house (phones, comps, pads, etc)?.... cheap-ish. Wired is preferred to wireless.

thanks!
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  #18  
Old 02-15-2012, 12:11 PM
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Skybolt Skybolt is offline
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I agree with others about squeezebox, except I did something slightly differant.

I used a speaker switch (AB8SS controlled by HomeSeer), and in wall speakers around the house/outside sourcing from a single amp with two sources (Again controlled by HomeSeer). Thats the distribution side, which there are a number of way's to do that.

As for the Squeezebox side, I use there Medis Server and the "Soft Squeeze Player" on my server and control that by any of the app's mentioned above. and that's all free and can be used by anyone. This method is not streaming as most others are. I find this to be awesome and quite simplistic. The wife even loves it!
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  #19  
Old 02-15-2012, 04:45 PM
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Fuzzy Fuzzy is offline
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I just recently started caring about whole home audio (mostly due to installing new speakers int eh back yard, and powering them from the garage AVR). I needed a way to control the music remotely from the back-yard (including volume and such), and squeeze was perfect. I had the advantage of recently upgrading both mine and my wife's phones to Droid RAZR's, leaving our too Droid 1 phones unused. Wiped them out, installed squeeze player (the actual player part) and Orange Squeeze (the controller part) on them (all phones tied to the same Google account, and therefore, those were only purchased once). About $6 and an hour or so later, I had near synced audio playback in my livingroom (via my already existing sage client), office via desktop PC (softsqueeze), back yard and garage (via a now permanent Motorola droid via WiFi), and my master bedroom (via HD300). Any of which can be controlled from any PC in the house, from my wife or I's android phones, from my Xoom tablet in the kitchen, etc.

I can use local media, Pandora (most often), or a multitude of internet radio stations.

I am now investigating some improved squeeze control implementation for sage.. no commitment to that yet though, as I'm loving the phone based control. Squeeze's openness and developer friendliness is what makes it the Audio equivalent of SageTV. There are plugins/apps out for a LOT of devices and sources, and all work pretty much seamlessly together.
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Last edited by Fuzzy; 02-15-2012 at 04:49 PM.
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  #20  
Old 02-16-2012, 08:18 AM
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Tomahawk51 Tomahawk51 is offline
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FWIW, I used to use a lashed-up Airplay / Airfoil solution for my house. I upgraded to Sonos after that and have been much happier with the ease of use. For me Sonos is primarily used with Airplay to stream Podcasts/Audio books (I know...I'm exciting), or Pandora via Sonos. I'm never far from an iPhone/Pad/Pod to control things. I have 4 zones now and will light up another 1-2 in the basement eventually.

I know it's not what OP was looking for, but after hearing the Airfoil comment come up I thought I'd chime in.
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