Sparky SBC

Hi Guys

Are there any plans for volumio on the sparky sbc board allowing sparky and Kali + Piano dac to run as a complete unit ?

Thanks in advance .

Yes, we’re working on that as we speak!

Excellent news michaelangelo look forward to using it :smiley:

Many Thanks.

I tell you, from what we see now it will be a really nice board for Audio purposes…


Any updated news on when volumio for sparky will be available ? :mrgreen:

Hi Guys any news on the release of volumio on sparky sbc my board is impatient to become operational :laughing: :stuck_out_tongue: :smiley:

We’re fixing the last stuff… Hopefully in the weekend you’ll have it!

Maybe its been a reallllly loooong weekend…any news?

I have been testing the latest pre-release with only a minor problem.
Allo and the Volumio team worked very hard to get the job done, and I dare to say we’re really close.
Unfortunately everything took a little longer as we also had a lot of effort going into fixing unrelated Volumio release issues.
This was then followed by holiday breaks.
Both teams should be a “full strength” now.


Dear folks! It seems we got rid of all the last issues and the Sparky image is ready.
For those who want to try it, here it is: …

Please let us know how it works, and if everything is allright we’ll release publicly!

Can I update (from 2.039) or rather reflash ?

I think you should reflash.

So far on testing the latest image we did not find any bugs…everything works.

@balbuze: yes you need to re-flash as we changed the kernel, which is currently not supported by Volumio’s ota update yet.

Think i have a faulty sparky sbc unit damn it ?

I was unable to get any music from the previous image for the sparky board with kali and piano dac fitted but as the kali + piano dac worked fine and still does with a RPI 2B+ board i assumed the image was at fault and the bug’s hadn’t been worked out for the image at that time so i thought i would wait for the tried and tested release.

Now having started with the newest release image for sparky (yesterday’s official release) and succesfully loading the image everything works fine wifi etc all good i can see my nas drive and access my stored music in flac form and when i choose the music the playback interface show’s it is indeed playing my choice.

The blue lights correctly light up to show the correct bit rate and that it is locked on to that but i have no music nothing …zilch …nada…!! not a note same for the web radio all looks correct but no music at all ? nothing through the headphone jack either with phones plugged in.

So i disassembled the sparky board from the kali + piano dac fitted this to my RPi 2 unit and it works perfectly ??

It matters not which way i set the jumpers on the kali + the piano dac nothing will make it play music .

NOT impressed at all … :angry:

During all the weeks I tested with the sparky board and all the issues we managed to iron out, I have never seen this.
The fact that the leds on kali light up correctly means that you have configured i2s correctly.
The only things that cam in mind were the jumper switches, you said they were set properly. I know that you neeed a really tiny pincette or watchmakers screwdriver to get it from one position to the other properly (needs a noticable click).
You did check volume levels, verfied the mixer setting is digital, set to 50 for a start (just for safety)?

How did you power, through the barrel plug, with the original Allo power supply?
Did you select I2S in the Playback Options, then select Allo Piano and a reboot?


We are yet to see one faulty unit of Sparky…however its possible. Check everything like Ge said first, most likely the problem comes from software. If not contact us we will arrange a speedy replacement.

Hi Ge and allo …Thank you for the swift replies.

Yes all the settings are correct I2S selected / Allo piano selected as dac / hardware selected as volume as the Sparky kali piano unit is connected to my pre amp and i use the vol control on there to adjust volume, the unit is rebooted as prompted by the software and by me after i have finalised all the settings.

The power supply is via the barrel connector on Kali with the jumper in place to power sbc kali and piano from the same power supply which is the Allo supplied model.

I have plenty of knowledge of the rpi units as i have many of them doing various things and as described the kali /piano dac is working fine using the Rpi 2B+ but as i have described no matter which way i set the jumpers ( 2 on piano dac and 1 on kali ) i cannot get any sound at all .

I purchased the sparky +Kali+piano october 2016 direct from allo and to be fair the sparky board has consistently never produced music no matter which image was loaded all along i thought this was a software issue myself but now i am not so shure.

This has lead me to believe it is a hardware fault ? I will try again tomorrow to make it work but i have done this process so many times now i dont hold out for any other result than i have had .

any other pointers or test idea’s gratefully received

Many thanks .

No other pointers. Send immediate an email to with order number for a replacement.

Ok on resuming investigations into my problem.

Today when i select the output device i have the choice of “audio output” or “PianoDac” pianodac was chosen but on saving this that choice changes to allo piano and the lights on kali change to green on either end of the kali to identify 48k and a red empty led in the centre result No sound ! but the led configuration was different from previously’ as before they where all correct blue’ the changes i made to these options today where not consistent at all and the options changed but after one of the reboots the system found the radio staion i had chosen after 30-40 seconds delay from change of settings i had music very odd.

At this point i changed the choice of device to piano dac 2.1 for the hell of it (after having no success with the prefered option) and at this point lost ethernet connection to the device (which was expected) and after a few reboots it never returned.

So i started again with a freshly burned image of volumio-2.057 for sparky on a new sd card (the other sd card being 2 month old )
Low and behold it works !!

After picking my jaw up off the floor i have a smile on my face and thankfully it seems not to be a hardware issue i had convinced myself of well not the sparky board anyway.

I must add at this point before the volumio software was written for sparky i had this board running on sparky_sd_ubuntu_020816 and it ran fine but i did not choose any audio set up with it this was to be last and final step to confirm it actually ran audio fortunately now i dont have to do this.

Also because Kali + Piano ran perfectly well on a Rpi 2 i was convinced it was the Sparky board (different sd card ) :angry:

so my conclusion is now a faulty sdcard ! and as everystep of reconfiguring the system was done exactally the same as before apart from this time in selecting my network choices my Nas drive showed in the list rather than me having to manually enter it’s details also the software is far quicker than it was with the faulty sd card in place.

Just goes to show a little extra testing and some patience has paid dividends .

All is well and listening to the set up now happy days.

I am NOW Impressed :slight_smile: :slight_smile: time to order a 2.1 Piano dac to see if i can intergrate my open baffle speakers with a sub woofer . :nerd:

Thx you for your patience. We have put a lot of efforts into choosing the best components (sometimes it meant that we tested components from 10 different manufacturers…)

We are yet to have one single Sparky (in any configuration be it audio , gsm , security) that was faulty. However that time will come…