I work in a small office, with 2 other people. We all like our music, but work very different schedules. We wanted a device that could play music, without having to leave a computer connected to it, and could be controlled by all of us, from our desks. We needed a wide and flexible music collection, and an easy interface. Pandora was the perfect service, but dedicated receivers were all costly and complicated. The obvious solution? Build my own!
- PogoPlug E02/P21 (Often on sale. Otherwise, $21.99 on Amazon) – This is a small embedded ARM-based computer.
- USB DAC (as cheap as $2.80) – This is a USB soundcard. You can get much higher quality sound, by spending a few dollars more for a Fiio D5 ($19.99), or go crazy with reference quality sound from an ODAC ($149) but this is the barebones build.
- 4GB+ Flash Drive ($6.30) – this will store all of the OS files and programs
- Speakers – we already had a nice 2.1 system by Teinuro, that I’m not including in the build cost.
- Install Arch Linux on the PogoPlug, using the instructions here.
- plug in the USB DAC.
- Update your installation:
- Set the timezone (America/New_York for me):
timedatectl set-timezone America/New_York
- Fix the boot environment (for better crash recovery):
fw_setenv bootcmd "usb start; usb stop; usb start; run force_rescue_bootcmd; run ubifs_bootcmd; run usb_bootcmd; usb stop; run rescue_bootcmd; run pogo_bootcmd; reset"
- Install my branch of Pidora, as detailed here
And you’re Done! enjoy your new office radio! I’m still working on certain features, such as better mobile support and better new-station support, but it works really well, for now.