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Complete Home Audio Installation. HTPC Base?


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Friend of mine wants to setup a complete audio system for his house with in-ceiling speakers, touchscreen monitor in kitchen for song selections, maybe phone access and/or a monitor in one other room, probably a remote. He asked for my help because I'm the nerd friend. My current skill set/job is networking and camera installation, and he's a very skilled carpenter, money isn't an object as he wants it done perfectly to his tastes. I've done speaker setups before too a receiver for a living room setup, but not something like this. I've also worked in homes that have the insanely expensive smart home screens in every room that controls lights, thermostats, music and so on, but that's not what he's going for. Just music and maybe YouTube/Pandora

 

So my first question is, has anyone ever done something like this or have any ideas on where to start? My starting thought was building a HTPC, sound card to a receiver, 2 touchscreen monitors to different rooms, and boom rest falls into place. Main concern is I've never used a touchscreen monitor aside from AIOs, they work as they should and reliable? If so, my only other question is, you guys have any ideas that might add to this experience/setup? 

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Well I've never done anything like that but you may not need an HTPC - depending on how he's going to distribute his media.  New receivers have music apps like Spotify built-in, so you would just need a terminal (basically a tablet-like device) to control it and access the Internet for videos, and they can also integrate with Alexa or Google Assistant.

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57 minutes ago, Blkm0nk3y92 said:

Friend of mine wants to setup a complete audio system for his house with in-ceiling speakers, touchscreen monitor in kitchen for song selections, maybe phone access and/or a monitor in one other room, probably a remote. He asked for my help because I'm the nerd friend. My current skill set/job is networking and camera installation, and he's a very skilled carpenter, money isn't an object as he wants it done perfectly to his tastes. I've done speaker setups before too a receiver for a living room setup, but not something like this. I've also worked in homes that have the insanely expensive smart home screens in every room that controls lights, thermostats, music and so on, but that's not what he's going for. Just music and maybe YouTube/Pandora

 

So my first question is, has anyone ever done something like this or have any ideas on where to start? My starting thought was building a HTPC, sound card to a receiver, 2 touchscreen monitors to different rooms, and boom rest falls into place. Main concern is I've never used a touchscreen monitor aside from AIOs, they work as they should and reliable? If so, my only other question is, you guys have any ideas that might add to this experience/setup? 

This whole setup is so out of date, theres no reason to do it this way. 

 

2 Ipads , Apple Tv, Wireless Network, Receiver, Speakers is all you need. All smart home devices are controlled thru the Ipads , audio is streamed thru airplay to the receiver. 

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I would just use Echo products. Connect an Echo to the receiver. Done.

 

That's actually what I do. I have my living room with my media center and in-wall / ceiling speakers. I have an Echo hooked up to my receiver, as well as my record player (depending on what mood I'm in). For rooms not wired to my receiver, I have Echos in them if I want multi-room or whole house audio playback. Honestly, a tablet is kind of out-dated imo. It's nice to visually see what's available, but 90% of the time you would just use your voice to play music and control the experience. It becomes annoying fumbling around for a device just to pause a track or make it louder.

 

I also run a Plex server where I have my whole music collection stored. If I really needed a tablet experience I would get a really cheap tablet for the Plex app, and connect some kind of streaming device or Raspberry Pi to my receiver. Not really interested in getting in the expensive Apple ecosystem.

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5 hours ago, Bjomesphat said:

I also run a Plex server where I have my whole music collection stored. If I really needed a tablet experience I would get a really cheap tablet for the Plex app, and connect some kind of streaming device or Raspberry Pi to my receiver. Not really interested in getting in the expensive Apple ecosystem.

 

I was avoiding that when brainstorming as well; He doesn't have any apple products, and neither do I except my iPad for work, and not necessarily interested in working this kind of project around them, will consider it, though. 

 

And the HTPC idea I had was because I think he would be interested in Plex, and the overall flexibility in what he can do with the system.

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