Stream music with Raspberry Pi and MoOde Audio

With the help of a Raspberry Pi and the free software MoOde Audio you can make a versatile audio streamer yourself at low cost. Stream music files in high resolution with it, get Spotify streams and listen to your favorite radio stations. We walk you through the entire installation and configuration.

Anyone who has a high-quality hi-fi system or active speakers without a network connection will benefit from a reliable music streamer. Such a device picks audio files from the Internet and local network sources. You then play it in high quality on the audio system. The music library is accessible from a browser, so you can control MoOde Audio from any computer, tablet and smartphone within the home network. In this article you can read how to install and configure MoOde Audio.

In addition to an (old) Raspberry Pi, you also need some accessories to set up this DIY audio streamer. Get a microSD card of at least 8 GB. If you want to store music locally, a memory card with even more storage capacity is needed. Also arrange a network and power cable. Depending on the way in which you are going to connect the Raspberry Pi to the hi-fi system, you will need a cable for the audio transfer. This can be, for example, an HDMI cable or analog cable. We will go into more detail about the transmission of the sound signal later.

Put MoOde Audio on memory card

Once you have everything you need, you can get started right away. Download MoOde Audio here. The idea is that you write the 1.4 GB image to a microSD card. If you unpack the downloaded zip file, you will be left with an img file of more than 4 GB. If necessary, insert the memory card into an SD adapter and insert it into the card reader of the PC or laptop.

For preparing the microSD card, the free application Balena Etcher fine tools. This tool is available for Windows, macOS and Linux. You add via Flash from file add the img file and then click Select target to point to the connected microSD card. Confirm with Flash! to copy the image to the memory card. This usually takes a few minutes.

Preparing Raspberry Pi

You are now going to get started with the Raspberry Pi. Here we use a somewhat older Raspberry Pi 3 Model B. You can of course also use a more recent one. Insert the prepared microSD card into the single-board computer and connect it to your home network. For a stable signal, an Ethernet connection is always preferred. You can also connect the power supply and possibly a USB storage medium with audio files.

An important point of attention is via which output of the Raspberry Pi you pass the audio signal to the hi-fi system. There are several options for this. The analog 3.5 mm output is indeed suitable for all hi-fi installations, but unfortunately you do not get such good audio quality with this. If your amplifier supports HDMI, you should preferably send the audio signal through this port. Alternatively, you can use a digital/analog converter (DAC) with USB input between the Raspberry Pi and the audio system.

There are all kinds of extensions for the Raspberry Pi to connect it to a music system. DACs that you can connect directly to the single-board computer are particularly popular. These expansion cards can transmit high-resolution audio over a short signal path. HiFiBerry specializes in such products. Most Raspberry Pi DACs connect directly to the GPIO connector, although there are also products that you have to solder to the printed circuit board. Finally, remember that some extensions require their own power supply.

It is likely that a dynamic IP address has been assigned to the MoOde Audio streamer via DHCP. You can find the correct IP address via the router’s management panel, although the user environment is also available via the web address. http://moode.local reachable.

The opening window gives you instant access to dozens of international radio stations. Click on an online channel without obligation to check whether the audio signal is working. The volume is set to zero by default, so use the plus sign inside the middle circle to increase the volume level.

Sound settings

Can’t hear any sound yet? Depending on your configuration, you need to change one or more settings. Click on the top right m to open the menu and choose Configure / Audio.

Have you connected an I2S-DAC to the Raspberry Pi, for example a copy of HiFiBerry, Audiophonics or IQaudIO? Then add Named device exactly which DAC it is and confirm with SET. If you’re transmitting audio via USB, HDMI, or the analog 3.5mm output, choose back Named device always for none.

Scroll down a bit if necessary and click behind MPD settings on EDIT. A new web page will appear with some important sound settings. When you don’t use a DAC, you give behind output device Select whether you want to forward the audio signal via HDMI or the 3.5mm audio output.

Fans of high-resolution audio files can transfer raw DSD files to their audio equipment. The condition is, of course, that the equipment can handle this. Alternatively, MoOde Audio converts DSD files to the more accessible PCM format if desired.

Decide whether you like the technique SoX Resampling want to enable, where you can set the target bit depth and sample rate. The function ReplayGain is also useful for normalizing volume differences between songs. Finally, you can increase the buffer for audio streams, so that you reduce the chance of stuttering. Save the changes via Save.

Stream local music

Have you stored music on the microSD card or connected a USB storage device? You can play these songs directly from MoOde Audio. From the home screen, click the large cover image on the right to open the library. Now go to the top left Library / Folder and then choose the appropriate storage drive. As soon as you click on an album, you start via play the audio playback.

Your external hard drive or USB stick may not be recognized by MoOde Audio. There are several reasons for this. Navigate to M / Configure / Library and click below Music Database on Regenerate / Yes. Put above the setting Automatically update the MPD database on USB insert or remove the switch on yes and confirm with SET. In this way, MoOde Audio automatically adds music files from USB storage media in the future.

Check whether you now have access to the USB stick or external hard drive. If not, go to M / Configure / System. By default, the service udisks-glue the USB port. Raspberry Pis with an ARMv6 architecture require the service Devmon. Change if necessary at the option USB auto mounter this setting and click SET. Restart the system and update the music database.

Add Network Resources

Using an audio streamer will only add value if you can add content from network sources to the library. Thanks to support for protocols such as UPnP, DLNA, SMB and NFS, you can go in all directions. For example, add a shared folder or media server of a NAS to. Go to M / Configure / Library and click below Music Sources on CREATE. you decide behind Type through which protocol you want to add a network resource. Choose EDIT and then enter the correct path.

Most NAS have SMB support (Samba) enabled by default. It is then sufficient to combine the hostname or the IP address with the shared folder, for example NASvanMaikel/music or In addition, enter the username, password and name of the network resource. Confirm at the top with Save. Now all you need to do is update the library. First return to the library and click on the top right M / Update library.

Add radio stations

MoOde Audio already contains quite a few online radio stations in which all kinds of music styles are represented. Of course you prefer to add your favorite radio stations. From the home screen, click on the large album cover to open the library and go to Library / Radio to display the list of current channels.

If you click on the plus sign at the top, a new window will appear. It is important that you Playable URL enter the correct stream link of the target radio station. There are several on the internet overviews with suitable stream links available.

Give the channel in MoOde Audio a name and fill in the other fields as completely as possible. You click behind Logo Image on Choose to associate an image with the radio station. Finally click on Create. Sometimes an unclear error message appears, but you can ignore it. The well-known Dutch radio stations work fine in MoOde Audio.

streaming Spotify

You simply release Spotify playlists on the Raspberry Pi audio streamer. The condition is that you have a Spotify Premium account. Furthermore, you need the desktop application or mobile app of the Swedish music service.

Within MoOde Audio, navigate to M / Configure / Audio and scroll down until you find the item Spotify renderer encounters. First click EDIT. By default, MoOde Audio uses a bitrate of 160 kbit/s for Spotify streams, but you can increase that to 320 kbit/s if desired. Furthermore, it is wise to use the function Volume normalization to activate. Save the changes at the top with Save and go back to the audio settings.

You activate the switch behind Spotify and confirm with SET. Now open the Spotify app on any device. You can connect the Raspberry Pi audio streamer to the Spotify app via the icon with the monitor and the speaker. Click on moody Spotify. Now start a playlist to listen to via the linked Hi-Fi installation of MoOde Audio.

AirPlay and bluetooth

It is also possible to provide the Raspberry Pi audio streamer with music via AirPlay and Bluetooth. From the opening screen, click M / Configure / Audio and find the part Bluetooth renderer on. Toggle the option pairing agent to automatically accept incoming connection requests. Confirm with SET.

You then put the switch behind Bluetooth and click again SET. You can now connect to the DIY audio streamer from the Bluetooth settings of, for example, a smartphone, tablet or laptop. Choose cool bluetooth in the list of devices, then stream your music. Through EDIT you can see which devices are connected to MoOde Audio via bluetooth.

The operation of AirPlay largely comes down to the same. You put the switch behind AirPlay on ON and confirm with SET. From an iPhone, iPad or other Apple device, in the AirPlay settings, choose Moode AirPlay to establish the link. For enthusiasts, there is also integration with squeezelite and Roon Bridge.

If you switch on Bluetooth, AirPlay or Spotify Connect, you will temporarily not have access to MoOde Audio’s own music library. Want to automatically resume playback of the playlist? In that case, enable the option Summary MPD and confirm with SET. In this way, MoOde Audio continues with the regular playlist on its own after breaking the bluetooth connection, for example.

Stay up to date

MoOde Audio has an active development team and new updates appear regularly. Of course you like to work with the latest version of the operating system. Therefore, check regularly M / Configure / System and click on the top CHECK to see if there is a new update. If so, run the installation right away. There’s a lot more to set up, but for now we’ve gone through the most important steps with you. Listen up!


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