Music Technology
Building a Desktop Music Streamer From A Car Stereo
While it may look like a car stereo, it is in fact an internet audio streaming machine.
While it may look like a car stereo, it is in fact an internet audio streaming machine.

 

Listening to audio and radio stations on the internet usually involves using a PC or mobile device to do so. That’s no longer the case as an engineer and audiophile named Chris (of niston cloud) designed a stand-alone Hi-Fi internet receiver component that can be connected to independent sound systems and stereos. Incredibly enough, the streamer was built around a Raspberry Pi and Pi-DAC audio card to bring 128Kbps of streaming goodness to our ears.

A GLK series HMI unit houses the Raspberry Pi and other components, giving it a sleek modern look.
A GLK series HMI unit houses the Raspberry Pi and other components, giving it a sleek modern look.

 

Chris chose Matrix Orbital’s GLK HMI series base plate in USB flavor to house the electronic components, which features a digital face (*192 X 64 pixels), 3-bicolor LEDs and a 7-key tactile keypad to navigate the menu. While the Raspberry Pi does all the math heavy lifting, the HD sound comes from the Pi-DAC add-on card from IQuadIO and features Phono connectors for easy sound system/stereo integration.

The enclosure provides plenty of room to house the RPi and Pi-DAC boards, leaving room for cables to be neatly routed.
The enclosure provides plenty of room to house the RPi and Pi-DAC boards, leaving room for cables to be neatly routed.

 

Open source firmware in C# was utilized to run on the Raspbian OS, which contains several subsystems for the audio, including the BASS audio library that provides a gap-less transition through station presets. All in all, the Nistron Stream One took 14 hours for the build, 200+ hours for software programming and close to $500 on the materials.

 

4 thoughts on “Building a Desktop Music Streamer From A Car Stereo

  1. Hi there! A little correction: “GLK HMI” unit refers to the “PC bay insert” style LCD display I’m using. For the case housing the project, check back with me soon. I’m cooking something up :)

    1. Folks,
      We need Internet Radio in the car! In the form of a car stereo. Without pairing your cellphone using Bluetooth.
      If it’s out there, and I find it to be of interest to consumers, I am ready to market it and promote this product on my internet radio station!
      I’ve been looking, but haven’t found a manufacturer that has done this, except for Pandora, which I believe is still pairing with Bluetooth.
      I mean, come on, there’s GPS navigation systems, Satellite Radio and HD Radio in automobiles. And with Satellite Radio, there’s a monthly fee, now with audio commercials. Okay, cellular companies offer unlimited internet access, and that could be bundled with your cellphone services, etc.
      There’s gotta be electronic savvy people that could put a car stereo together, with added cellular technology. Patent the product, market it, manufacturer it, and sell it and become a Pioneer of Internet Car Radios!
      What do you think? I’m ready to do the promotion and marketing of it!
      I have an internet radio station called The “CLASSIC ROCK VAULT” and
      we’re ready to take our listeners to the next level, with ease! Not complicated with cellphone batteries dying, wires hanging out of their cellphones, etc.
      Serious, not Sirius, knowledgeable individuals, let’s talk! Feel free to email me at classicrockvault@yahoo.com.
      Cheers,
      David
      Owner of The “CLASSIC ROCK VAULT”
      HD Internet Radio Station

      1. The are some Chinese units out that are basically an in dash tablet. Theoretically you could install an app for music but the build quality seems a bit dodgy.

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