I am planning to design a wireless interface to send lossless quality audio over a dedicated 802.11 network from a surround receiver to 8 individual speakers. To do this, from what I can tell, I would need to use a Mono ADC to convert the output from the receiver output channels to digital, then send them over the air to the speakers, which use a mono DAC. I was planning on using Zeros (cheap, but pain to get).

Now to design a DAC for the "client" is easy. Most designs I've seen use i2c and the bandwidth is fine for a mono channel. Problem I'm coming up with is getting it from the receiver to those clients. The bandwidth of the i2c interface won't handle all 8 channels losslessly from an 8 channel ADC, Unless I'm not fully understanding how i2c works. Using 8 individual Pis with a mono ADC interface would work, but you would have 16 individual IPs to set up, and while I would have no problem SSHing into each Pi to set them up, I don't want to spend a long time setting up and debugging if something happens to mess the network interfaces up. Plus, would there be sync issues or not on that route? Also having one interface to control all the Pis would be great. That way I can control the volume of the speakers by network for sound balancing.

I would like to minimize hardware as much as possible. Wifi is better than Bluetooth for this application from what I've read because it has less latency and can deliver the lossless audio without compressing it (defeating the lossless idea to begin with).

Does anyone have any suggestions on how to do this?

  • 1
    This sounds hard. You're not just up against bandwidth constraints - the Pi's clock signal is not wonderful, which leads to jitter even in stereo applications. I'd be really happy to be proved wrong, but I'm not sure this is going to be practical. Achieving sync to within auditory fusion levels - wirelessly, over 8 channels, with a Pi - sounds implausible. I'd investigate alternatives.
    – goobering
    Jul 7 '16 at 11:09

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.