The way we listen to music is about to change. Today, everyone can carry their heart’s content of stored or streamed music in their pockets with great ease, but everyday hardware could bring you so much more. Here at Pi Supply, we have always desperately wanted to expand into the elusive world of high-quality audio, because we could never understand why common devices claim to take us into the future, but leave music quality in the past.
This month marks the launch of our new range, JustBoom – affordable high-quality audio for the Raspberry Pi.
The aim of this product range is to combat the smoke and mirrors that seems to dominate the high-quality audio market, bringing what should be affordable for everyone into everyone’s price range. Almost comical examples of this craziness include the fact that some brands will charge into the many £000’s for a DAC or high-quality audio player (we’ve seen some priced at £12,000!), while still coming in a clunky box and carrying a clunky user interface. Such products exist in the market today, but essentially a Pi 3 in a case with a HAT on top can do the same job for a substantially lower price.
The majority of consumers think that just because an audio product is more expensive it means that it’s better and consequently, audio companies take advantage of the uninformed customer. The compressed format of the MP3 has been around for a good number of years, but the accessibility of lossless file types like FLACs (which stands for Free Lossless Audio Codec we may add) remains sparse even today. The hardware required to utilise these superior forms of audio is in fact well within the pockets of a lot of people, so we don’t see why everyone shouldn’t be able to use their sound systems properly.
And we want to show people that high-quality audio can be done with a Raspberry Pi and a few HATs 🙂
For what normally would cost upwards of £400/£500 (and even into the many £000’s), we’ve created a range of Raspberry Pi HATs that can deliver 32 bit/384kHz audio for less than £100 (including the Pi).
To put this into context, here are some use cases for a high-quality audio HAT and Raspberry Pi:
– Streaming (either from cloud or network storage) high-definition audio player
– Multi-room audio player
– Media centre / set-top box living room entertainment system
– Shop floor / elevator / background music audio player
– High-quality audio player with local storage
– Desktop high definition audio player with amplified headphone output
We’re hitting the market already supported by platforms including: OSMC / Roon Labs / Rune Audio / Open Elec / Tidal / Spotify / Volumio, and many more…
We’re keen to make people aware of these great applications you can utilise with a Raspberry Pi. Providing context about the industry and how the Pi can change it is, in our opinion, the perfect way to do it.
The next phase after launch for us will be building kits (that include a Raspberry Pi, JustBoom HAT, nice casing, power supply, SD Card, etc.) with a view to getting them into the hands of more people, hopefully bringing the Raspberry Pi into their lives and the mainstream! 🙂
We hope this little insight into the high-definition audio market, and how a Raspberry Pi could revolutionise its cost and convenience, interests you just as much as us!
We hope you enjoy!