Volumio in the car on RPi, controlled by iPhone?

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by DonnyBahama » Sun Apr 05, 2015 9:37 am
I have a couple of old Model Bs sitting around and would like to use one as a car PC. There’s lots and lots of stuff on the 'net about RPi CarPCs using a touchscreen interface, but it’s not practical for me to replace the factory head unit. I want to stick the Pi in the glove box and connect it to the AUX input and control Volumio using my iPhone.

If anyone has done something similar I’d really appreciate hearing about how you got it working. Did you set up an ad hoc network? If so, how? What wifi adapter did you use? Did you install a router? (I’d prefer not to but) if so, which one? What about startup/shutdown? Is Volumio sufficiently robust that I can just turn the key off and kill the system all the time?

It would be nice to be able to load up a flash drive with a bunch of music and be able to play/control it from my iPhone, but realistically, my usage will probably be mostly Pandora & Spotify. I’m not sure whether it makes more sense to run Pandora/Spotify from the Pi, using my iPhone as a wifi hotspot - or use Airplay - and I’m not sure how compatible that’s going to be in an ad hoc environment.

Thoughts? Comments? Suggestions?

This can be done and I guess there are several real world cases to be found when googling around.

Starting/stopping definitely needs some attention. Not sure if there are any good car oriented power supplies out there.

You can give the Pi a fixed IP and maybe run something like hostapd using an USB wifi dongle (best look for a dongle using the Atheros chipset which has good support) to create a local wifi netwerk for your iPhone.

Good luck hunting down the components. Let us know have it goes.

Can’t you use the AP function of your iPhone and let Volumio connects to it?

Sure, you only need to figure out the IP address it receives from the iPhone to actually access the UI. Not sure if Bonjour works when using the iPhone AP function. If it does, than you just access volumio.local all the time. Probably just need to try :slight_smile:

I’ve got a unit set up for the car using the hifiberry pro + on the pi . I use a stereo out chord (the dac has no headphone out) to the mini phone plug that plugs into the aux input in the car. I get way too much buzzing and it is really not useable. How have you been able to do this? Is there an explanation for why this is happening?

Thanks for all input.