Headless Music Operation


Something I keep coming back to in my setup is headless operation for music. There are more than a few occasions when I just want to listen to some tunes without having to fire up the whole thing and access itunes with a keyboard and mouse. In my pre-mini days, I was using a SliMP3 device from Slim Devices. I just hooked it back up and am very happy with the decision and here’s why…

The SliMP3 neatly integrates with my existing iTunes library including playlists. The software from Slim Devices is actually free and works on all platforms… It’s easy to configure if you would rather use a folder for music rather than your iTunes library info. There’s full support and even included access to internet playlists and radio stations for reaching out beyond your collection as well. As long as my Mac is on, I can access music through a very simple user interface with the included remote control. I had previously programmed the functions of that remote into my universal (Harmony 688) and with a simple click can switch inputs and modes from music to video if needed.

You can access your server (runs as a background process on your system) via Safari through Rendezvous or even remotely — which by the way can enable remote access to your library for out of home streaming if you desire. If you add more Squeezeboxes to your home, you can actually have multiple streams throughout your home, either in sync or different tunes for everyone.

The display on the SliMP3 is easy to read in either small or large mode though the newer Squeezebox units offer an even better display as well as digital outputs and wireless connectivity which make an upgrade pretty tempting.

5 Responses to “Headless Music Operation”

  1. burtman Says:

    I’ve found that using my bluetooth SonyEricsson t610 and salling clicker to controll my iTunes collection works really well. iTunes sits on my server (which sits next to the Stereo) and a bluetooth dongle plugs into the back off it, I can do searches, skip forwards and backwards through tracks and track names appear on the phone while playing. Only problem is the interface is slow on my early model t610, its a lot quicker on my mates k700.

  2. Jonathan Greene Says:

    I use Salling Clicker on a Palm Tungsten T3 and like it as well. Slim is a much more seamless experience though… It also works as a nice simple component and allows anyone (my wife) to manage what’s playing with ease. The remote control UI is very nice – like the iPod, but without the scroll wheel.

  3. Kevin Says:

    How does this compare to listening via tivo?

  4. Jonathan Greene Says:

    I can’t tell you since I’ve only owned the Series 1 Tivo. The main difference is that the TV would still have to be on with Tivo and my point was to get music going without the TV.

  5. thierry Says:

    I use Slimserver with my CD collection on a 300 Go
    firewire drive and a allway running Mac Mini.
    I also use Telcanto for Slimserver to control slimserver
    on an iPaq via wifi.

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