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Hi all

 

I run an Audiophonics I2S streamer (based on RaspPi) between a small server (Roon Rock) and a PS Audio DAC - see: https://www.audiophonics.fr/en/network-audio-players-raspdac/raspdigi-lte-lvds-v2-streamer-i2s-lvds-hdmi-allo-kali-reclocker-audio-gd-compatible-p-13064.html. When it works, it sounds nice (for the price point). And, for reasons not readily apparent to me, I have a bias against USB direct from server to DAC, hence the LVDS/I2S streamer.

 

But... (there's always a but, isn't there), the streamer has started causing problems. So,  I'm wondering if anyone knows a tech in Melbourne who looks at such things? Potentially, interstate, as I could post. Though for a $300 device, I only want to throw so much cash at it in repair.

 

Problems involve, when switching off, it is regularly not discoverable on the LAN when re-booted - often very hard to locate by the Roon server or my PC. Often requires a re-flashing of the SD card (running Roopieee). Also, when turned off, it seems to still have a power relationship with the DAC via I2S (over HDMI cable) - it's as if it doesn't fully switch off. Power button remains flickering/lit. I'm wondering about loose connections or other malfunctions that are readily fixable. It's now out of the system chain, so I'm using USB from server (groan).

 

But before I bin it, or lay down yet more $$$, I wondered if it could be returned to a reliable, working state.

 

All & any advice very welcome!

 

Many thanks

Paul

Edited by PMAAMP
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Thanks @Snoopy8 - good to know.

 

I'll start looking at other streaming options...

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  • 4 months later...


On 27/06/2020 at 6:00 PM, PMAAMP said:

Problems involve, when switching off, it is regularly not discoverable on the LAN when re-booted - often very hard to locate by the Roon server or my PC. Often requires a re-flashing of the SD card (running Roopieee). Also, when turned off, it seems to still have a power relationship with the DAC via I2S (over HDMI cable) - it's as if it doesn't fully switch off. Power button remains flickering/lit. I'm wondering about loose connections or other malfunctions that are readily fixable. It's now out of the system chain, so I'm using USB from server (groan).

 

OK, the pictures make it look like an RPi in a nice box with a riser board for the I2S. So there's not a huge amount to go wrong there and not much scope for complex diagnostics. The most common cause of RPi headaches is a power supply that sags under load, so trying a replacement power supply is your first step. If the device isn't shutting down properly -- and most RPi distributions are a full Linux distro that won't be too impressed with unclean shutdowns -- you could be getting some filesystem problems which is why you're reflashing your card. 

 

The RPi doesn't fully 'shut off' when receiving power, even after a shutdown event. So I wouldn't be surprised to see that riser board keeping power, because it most likely takes one of the input power rails straight through which isn't switched off when the RPi shuts down.

 

 

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Thanks @PCOWandre - that's really helpful. One of the issue I worked out was an IP address leasing issue. I had 2 DHCP servers on my LAN (bad idea) and didn't realise it - so the RPi and also the dedicated Roon core server both had problems with IP addresses and drop outs. I've since fixed the DHCP server issue & the Roon core works flawlessly now. However, I've sold on my I2S capable DAC so can't further test the RPi - I might try and locate a suitable DAC to test it out with a reflashed Roopiee.

 

During the mix while reflashing the software - when I still had the I2S DAC, I was trying to install DietPi, and with a monitor attached to the RPi, things didn't go well. So, your point about the power supply is a very good one. If I go back to the RPi, then I'll def look for a better power supply, though finding a decent 5v 3A LPS seems to be no easy feat.

 

Thanks again, Paul.

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Aah, yes, running multiple DHCP servers (that aren't clustered) is a recipe for Interesting Times. 

 

Honestly, I think the RPi -- which was designed to be a learning tool/toy -- ends up in some places where it really isn't the right tool for the job. They're finicky about power, a little noisy and storage on SD is a bit crap. I use a few RPis for some niche jobs and I've got them network booting to avoid the SD card problems.

 

Using a flashy audiophile linear power supply for an RPi is a bit of a lipstick on a pig case, apart from not being likely to deliver any measurable (or audible) advantage over a clean switchmode design. Jaycar stock 5 volt, 5 amp Meanwell switchmode supplies for a bit under $50 which gives a fair bit of headroom. Slap on a handful of decent capacitors for filtration and the output under load should be as close to flat as one can expect. 

 

If you have a display connected, I believe the RPi console still has a lightning-bolt logo that flashes when the power supply sags below 5 volts and the Linux kernel logs will have warning lines for any power shortage events. Worth keeping an eye out. Also, if you are going to use an RPi, you can underclock them. Given you only need a fraction of their compute power to decode FLAC and play it, underclocking will reduce heat. And the RPi4 loves to overheat without supplemental thermal management.

 

 

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  • 2 weeks later...

Problems involve, when switching off, it is regularly not discoverable on the LAN when re-booted - often very hard to locate by the Roon server or my PC. Often requires a re-flashing of the SD card (running Roopieee).

 

For what its worth,I had the same problems above with my SOTM ultra.(Yes a very different unit)

It turned out to be the SD card.The card I had was the recommended class 10 however I replaced it with another class 10 of supposed better quality and it hasn't missed a beat since.

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