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Author Topic: Raspi3 + Dabs radio  (Read 859 times)

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Dal1980

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Raspi3 + Dabs radio
« on: January 14, 2017, 12:53:40 am »
Hi Guys,

Nice to see there's a Pi section here. This will be useful!

I've been trying to get my head around a concept but ended up falling into a technical bath of confusion and finding a field full of rabbit holes  :cry:

Can anyone suggest where I might start my journey (cheat codes to the last level also accepted)...

I'm looking to create a Steepletone (basically a radio in a wooden box) using the raspberry pi (v3), perhaps some kind of dabs expansion thingy (stop me if I'm getting too technical for you), and a touch screen interface. This is still early days for showing anything and I'll be including this in the project announcements (or appropriate place) when I get past the initial concept.

My rough idea is to:

Wooden box with speakers connected either the standard headphone jack on the Pi or utilising left + right channels if an expansion board has this. I'm not sure if I go down the route of buying a DABs USB to plug into the pi or utilise the GPIO connection. If the GPIO connection is the better/cheaper option then I've got the problem that the screen also uses this GPIO interface. I've order a 1:3 expansion board but read some complicated issues with devices sharing this connection and issues arising if they don't support other stuff being connected at the same time.

What I would like would be for the box to allow for playing MP3's (I don't think it matters if I just FTP the MP3's across), playing something like Spotify perhaps (not too important), and the ability to utilise the Dabs device through a front-end program. Ideally some linux based entertainment centre would be great but I know I'm a bit limited on what is available for pi builds (not sure if any of these would be compatible Kodibuntu, GeeXboX, OSMC, etc but failing that I could utilise Attract Mode's front end as I've been messing about with Squirrel layouts anyway... in fact come to think of it, that would make a nice front end! hmmm)

I guess, with me not ever dealing with Dabs tech and anything more than vanilla Pi builds I'm a bit lost and any help would be really appreciated.

Many thanks
Dal
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mahuti

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Re: Raspi3 + Dabs radio
« Reply #1 on: January 14, 2017, 04:29:20 am »
The onboard headphone jack's audio kinda stinks. I often see people suggesting something like this:

https://www.amazon.com/External-Adapter-Headphone-Microphone-Windows/dp/B016CU2PEU/ref=sr_1_7?ie=UTF8&qid=1484385741&sr=8-7&keywords=raspberry+pi+audio+usb

I can't speak to using the DAB.... but since you mention frontend, I can tell you from experience that Kodi works on RetroPie as I have it set up running an 80s MTV video loop on one of my arcade machines when I'm not using it for games. I don't use the music add ons, but Kodi has a pretty deep list (including Pandora). Not sure how well Pandora would run... I'm guessing fine, but who knows. I did a compile of Kodi on RetroPie, but I think Floob's latest image may have it preinstalled. Compiling it required a bit of research to find all of the stuff I'd need, but somewhere on Kodi's site, I think I ended up finding really simple to follow step-by-step instructions for installing all of the required libs.

http://kodi.wiki/view/Category:Music_add-ons

Sorry I can't help much more than that.
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Dal1980

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Re: Raspi3 + Dabs radio
« Reply #2 on: January 14, 2017, 08:12:17 am »
Thanks mahuti

That all helps!

Quote
I can tell you from experience that Kodi works on the RetroPie as I have it set up running an 80s MTV video loop on one of my arcade machines

 :D  :applaud: That's awesome!

Anyone got any info on DABs modules and if they play well with touch screen GPIO connections. I guess since mahuti mentioned the onboard audio jack being a bit pants I'm hoping that the dabs module provides audio out but this may now even require some kind of sound module which probably also connects to the GPIO. Like I say I've ordered an expansion board that converts the single GPIO (header?) and grants me up to 3 devices... link below to what I bought

https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B01AENUC3M/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o00_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

Also for the record, my touch screen device is this one
http://www.waveshare.com/product/mini-pc/raspberry-pi/displays/5inch-hdmi-lcd-b.htm

Cheers
Dal
I'm on my last life, best not try anything stupid

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Hawkeye71

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Re: Raspi3 + Dabs radio
« Reply #3 on: January 14, 2017, 10:41:20 am »
Can I jump onto the back of this thread with a question about these Pi's?

Probably stupid question but.... why is it they don't need a fan?

mahuti

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Re: Raspi3 + Dabs radio
« Reply #4 on: January 14, 2017, 11:35:44 am »
They use a very very tiny ARM processor and are very low power consumption. Only about the size of a credit card. You can literally run one off of a AA battery. Mine is overclocked and only averages about 120*. It's basically a low power embeddable device like the guts of a smartphone
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Hawkeye71

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Re: Raspi3 + Dabs radio
« Reply #5 on: January 14, 2017, 02:19:19 pm »
Aha, many thanks

obcd

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Re: Raspi3 + Dabs radio
« Reply #6 on: January 17, 2017, 06:58:27 am »
You will need an amplifier if you need to drive 1 or more speakers. You could get one out of a set of cheap second hand pc speakers.

The DAB part is confusing me a bit. What do you intend to use for the dab reception and decoding?
Most people use the pi as internet radio when it comes to broadcast reception.
I have seen som DAB receiver modules, but they were very expensive and basically used as development kit to show the possibilities of the chipset.
Maybe you could find an usb stick that can do the trick.
Another thing you can examine are DVB tv sticks. Some can be used over a large spectrum, but you will need to do all the decoding in software. 
The third option are the radio receiver chips that are used in cheap mp3 players. They don't deliver DAB but can deliver analog stereo out. Their sensitivity and selectivity is not very good.

And yes, to get a good audio quality from the pi, you will need an usb stick or a sound card addon. The second gives the best results but they cost pretty much the same as the pi itself. If an addon uses some of the io lines, they usually can't be used anymore by another addon. SPI and IIC can be exceptions as they are busses with the purpose to connect multiple devices. Still however, the software has to be ready for multiple devices on the bus as well.


Dal1980

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Re: Raspi3 + Dabs radio
« Reply #7 on: January 17, 2017, 09:35:53 am »
Thank OBCD, i know this is an old post and thought it had gone to the great archive in the sky. Especially since i was hijacked. 😥

Some updates

I've managed to secure the following kit:

Arcade Amp
2 4" speakers
DAB USB
Power regulator 12v + 5v

The USB DAB stick was under 10 so thought id at least try it

As for what your saying with not being able to use multiple GPIO connections at the same time without getting into BUS programming etc (stuff that i have no experience with), its a shame but thanks for mentioning the internet radio idea, never thought of that! You may have solved all my problems just then without even realising it lol

Many thanks. FYI; Ill be posting this on the project announcements within a few days so if your interested ill conclude this thread with the link to that thread



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mahuti

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Re: Raspi3 + Dabs radio
« Reply #8 on: January 18, 2017, 02:55:56 am »
Quote
this is an old post and thought it had gone to the great archive in the sky. Especially since i was hijacked.

Hah hah... I've been known to revive posts from over 10 years ago  ;D Looking forward to your link.
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obcd

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Re: Raspi3 + Dabs radio
« Reply #9 on: January 18, 2017, 04:31:31 am »
I am curious what DAB usb stick you found.
Does it work with the raspberry pi or is it's software closed source and x86 only?
It could be usefull for a senior radio with emergency button.
That should work without internet connection, and every button is one 2 much.

Dal1980

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Re: Raspi3 + Dabs radio
« Reply #10 on: January 18, 2017, 09:14:33 am »
@mahuti : lol, I would say that 11 years is an acceptable cut-off period  :laugh:

@obcd :

The one I found (one of many available on ebay) was http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/272267647631?_trksid=p2057872.m2749.l2649&ssPageName=STRK%3AMEBIDX%3AIT which arrived this morning  :)

Not had any luck picking up a single channel. The software that comes with it Blaze HDTV Player (v6.0) (BlazeVideo, Inc @ www.blazevideo.com.) tells me to set my antenna in an open and wide place without shelter yet the contradiction occurs when I have an internal (non-weather proof) aerial, a cable that reaches a great distance of 1 meter and a USB stick :banghead:

I'm also clueless to what frequencies and settings I need to include, the advanced options comes with even more head scratchers  :dunno ???
Specufuc Band (KHz): Frequency Range, BandWidth
DVT Modulator: Constellation, Code Rate, Transmission Mode, Guard Interval
Advanced Scan: Off-center Frequency, Retry Times

Here's the manual that came with this (scroll down for English)
www.retro.zombiesbyte.com/download/files/dabs-manual.pdf

Cheers
D
I'm on my last life, best not try anything stupid

-> Check out my other projects at http://retro.zombiesbyte.com/projects

Dal1980

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Re: Raspi3 + Dabs radio
« Reply #11 on: January 21, 2017, 09:50:50 am »
Just connecting the dots on this thread.

Project Announcement: http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php/topic,153047.0.html
 
I'm on my last life, best not try anything stupid

-> Check out my other projects at http://retro.zombiesbyte.com/projects

  
 

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