Raspberry Pi Cloud Music Server

Convert your legacy music system into a Sonos like Wireless HiFi system with the 35$ Raspberry Pi or Raspberry Pi 2 and Pi Music Box

Sonos alternative
Sonos alternative

The Raspberry Pi connected to your legacy Music system or a pair of speakers and running Pi MusicBox will give you Cloud based Music System similar to Sonos. It will be a standalone streaming music player for music on your network or online music streams like  Spotify, Google Music, SoundCloud, Webradio, Podcasts and other music streaming services  from the cloud. It will also be dlna and airplay enabled.

Pi MusicBox is based on Mopidy and can be controlled via an app (Android or IOS)  on your phone or tablet or via a browser on your PC.

Overview :

  • Download the latest Pi MusicBox images.
  • Prepare a SD / Micro SD card to receive the downloaded Image.
  • Un compress and Transfer the downloaded Image to the SD / Micro SD card.
  • Connect all components to the Pi, insert the SD card and Boot up the Pi.

Note : If you one are one those discerning audiophiles demanding the very best sound quality, check out some of the great stuff being produced at hifiberry.com. They have quite a few tailor made systems for the Raspberry Pi.

Time and Difficulty :

  • Time : About 15 mins once you have the Image file and the rest of the software.
  • Newbie Difficulty level : Ridiculously Easy
What you will need :
  • Raspberry Pi Model A, B or B+ or Raspberry Pi 2 Model B or one of its clones like Banana Pi M1 or M2 or Banana Pro
  • Ethernet connection or a supported USB Wifi adapter for the Pi
  • SD or Micro SD Card that fits into your Pi (4GB or above is recommended)
  • Speakers (USB or Analogue) or a Sound system (HDMI or Analogue)
You will need to download :
  1. Download the latest Pi Music Box image file from the Pi MusicBox website.
  2. 7-Zip utility to uncompress the downloaded Img.gz image.
  3. SD Formatter utility to wipe the SD / Micro SD card clean and get it ready
  4. Win32 Disk Imager to transfer the expanded ISO image to the SD / Micro SD card.

Create the Cloud Music Player

  1. Use 7-zip and expand the downloaded musicboxX.X.zip file into a musicboxXX.img file. (at the time of writing the latest iteration was musicbox0.6.zip and musicbox0.6.img)
  2. Clean the SD / Micro SD card off all data using the SD Formatter Utility.
  3. Open the Win32 Disk imager utility, under the device section,very carefully select the SD card drive, Load the musicboxXX.img in Image file section and Click Write.
  4. Connect the Sound sytem to your Pi,  plug in the Ethernet connection.
  5. Insert the SD / Micro SD card into the Pi and Power it on.

If you are on a wired connection, your Pi based Sonos alternative  is now ready and running.

The Pi MusicBox automatically detects and chooses Sound output via HDMI or USB or Analogue connection.

Open up http://musicbox.local/ from your PC browser. From your android  phone or tablet, you will need to enter the ip address of the Pi ( If there is a screen connected to the Pi, It will display its IP address. Alternatively, log on to your Router’s console to find out the IP address assigned to the Pi).  There are also a number of Mopidy apps on the IOS and Android stores for your mobile devices.pimusicbox

Click on setting to configure your Wireless Networks pimusicbox2


To play  music shared on your local network, Click on Settings > Music Files. Enter the location of the shared Music folder and depending on the shared folder’s permissions, you might need to enter the User name and Password to access the folder.pimusicbox3

To add online streaming services, Click on Settings > Services and choose your service, Enter credentials.pimusicbox4


Use the Search box to conduct a global search through all your services.pimusicbox5






Note on Security :

The Pi MusicBox is not totally secure and should not be run outside a  firewall. Running this in a home environment is fine since your home network is protected by your Router’s firewall.

Things to bear in mind are :

  • The Mopidy music server is not completely protected
  • The passwords of your  wifi networks as well as online streams are stored in plain text on the SD-Card.
  • Login to the server can be done via SSH with the root login and the password musicbox (remote login is not enabled by default though).




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