Plex will turn your Raspberry Pi into a Chromecast Audio DIY

Raspberry Pi Foundation

Plex is one of the best services for hosting your own media collection and streaming it to all your other devices, and now the developers at Plex are working on a way to stream your music to a Raspberry Pi.

Plex lets you store a collection of music files to stream to any other device with the Plex app, but the Plex team also has a dedicated music player called Plexamp with a cleaner interface. You can already install Plexamp on mobile devices, as well as macOS, Windows, and Linux, but there has been work in the past on a “headless” version of Plexamp as a streaming target. The idea is that you could install the headless version on a low-end PC, which could output audio based on commands from another device. It’s like the now discontinued Chromecast Audio or Amazon Echo Input, except just for Plex (and uses existing hardware).

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Elan Feingold, CTO and co-founder of Plex, shared an early build of a Plexamp server for the Raspberry Pi on Tuesday. Once it’s downloaded to a Pi and opened, you can play music through a web interface. on any web browser on the same local network, or choose the Pi as the output in the Plexamp app on other devices. You can also install Plexamp Server as a system service that starts on boot, for a more Chromecast Audio-like experience. There’s even support for the PiFi Digi+ cardwhich attaches to the top of a Raspberry Pi and adds an improved audio chip and optical output.

This isn’t the first time that Plex has experimented with a remotely accessible version of Plexamp for the Raspberry Pi. There was some beta versions in 2019, but this release required an authentication token taken from earlier versions of Plexamp and an older (now insecure) version of Node. This new version is still in its early stages, but setup is much less complicated than previous attempts.

It’s unclear at this point when (or if) headless versions of Raspberry Pi will be supported at the same level as Plexamp on other platforms. With Chromecast Audio and Echo Input now discontinued, there are far fewer options for streaming your own music collection to your home speakers. Google doesn’t currently sell any Chromecasts or smart displays/speakers with a dedicated audio output, and while there are Alexa smart speakers with this feature, Plex’s integration with Alexa isn’t great.

Go to the source link below for installation instructions. The only hardware requirement is a Raspberry Pi capable of running 64-bit software. The forum post didn’t mention whether you also need a 64-bit Raspberry Pi OS or not.

Source: Plex Forums

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