Suggestion for ESPMUSE: multiple analog inputs

Dear Olivier I’ve seen yesterday your product demo on the Home Assistant event, and I found there’s a gap on the market you could fill in.

There’s the very common use case, which people usually face later:

  • when you buy a TV, and you want to hook a pair of good speakers to it, you suddenly realize it only has a digital TOSLINK audio output.
  • the TV remote volume control doesn’t act on the digital output so you can’t control volume of the speakers
  • you want Home Assustant TTS announcements on the same speakers
  • you may want another auxiliary audio source like an FM receiver or something
  • a good quality pair of speakers has balanced XLR or TRS input connections

Currently there’s no such product on the market that could solve this issue for the people but with an ESP32 and with some additional compoments this could be done very easily by you and your team, and not too expensive either.

Look at the diagram I’ve made below:

  • The ESP32 (could be running ESPHome) would be in charge of receiving network streams and forward them to an I2S stereo DAC. It could also command the peripherals:
  • Use a GPIO IN/OUT pair for an infrared receiver and transmitter, to catch the TV remote signals (ESPHome supports decoding them, so you can adjust volumes with TV’s remote). The transmitter could be used to send codes to “relay” translated codes some commands to other devices around (set top box, for example).
  • Via I2C it could command some simple analog volume controllers, to help with external soruces gain equalization (for example SPDIF and analog sources levels should be aligned, also “master” output level).
  • A last pair of GPIOs could be used to command an analog sources switcher (simple binary control).
  • Output should be splitted and offer connectivity with SPDIF/TOSLINK, analog RCA stereo and 3.5 jack headphone, and of course balanced XLR or TRS jacks.

Software-wise you could rely on ESPHome, there the 80% of the work is done now, just need to add some support for volume controllers and the source switcher, which compared to the rest of the work shouldn’t be too difficult.

What do you think?

1 Like

Hi Robert and thanks for taking the time to explain your suggestions.

Regarding the architecture it could be simplified using a codec with a built-in hardware mixer, but not sure how to do the balanced XLR.

Regarding the market positionning I’m afraid that it will be too intimidating, because it offers so many possibilities, but maybe I’m wrong. I think that the barrier right now is that ESP32 products are too difficult to configure for a many people. But if we can make the installation procedure simpler, we could have more people in the project and have the volume needed to make affordable hardware.

So phase 1 will be to make those ESP32 audio product more accessible, then we could develop such a product.


Oh wow - thats exactly what I was looking for. I want to build a pair(stereo) of nice 40-50W speakers for my living room. The ESP+MAX4908 could completely replace any kind of media receiver.

DIY amplifiers could be a great market too btw.

1 Like

That’s exactly the kind of reaction I was expecting!!!

Not with ESPHome and the great community over there :slight_smile:
I think an approach based on a ready-made module like WT32-ETH01 would even allow for proper wired Ethernet connection!

Absolutely! Wired ethernet would be a great addition. IMHO wired is still quite a bit better then WIFI. That’s why I rarely use Shelly devices. I dont want my WIFI to be clogged by 50 devices :stuck_out_tongue:

I basically need a device which acts like a fully integrated little media receiver with support for my TV and audio streaming by home assistant. Of yourse you can get something like an Yamaha NP-S303 but why spend hundreds of euros on something you could easily replace with a ESP32? (be it with a silightly worse quality)

ESP-Home is super easy. You can flash it through a browser! You could propably ship it with a precompiled version. - Alternatively we could think about creating a fully custom firmware.

I’d love to see an controllable pin to switch the external ampifier on/off too!

I know I could propably use a PI for that. But a PI is way to powerful. It would be a wate of computing power :smiley:

Love the idea.
I have an older 100W amp with plenty of space in the case, so I added a RPi with piCorePlayer, but I’ve been looking into adding an input select, so I can also use it for my media center.
This would be exactly what I was looking for.

1 Like

@Raspiaudio you could also think of a Kickstarter campaign or something similar. I’d definetly fund it. I think the need for it is way bigger than you anticipated. It doesn’t need a inbuilt speaker or amplification - that would keep costs low.

I think the most basic needs would be:

  • ESP32 w/ wired Ethernet
  • multiple RCA inputs (and optionally toslink, 3.5mm and XLR) + fairly high quality esp audio streaming
  • digital volume control on a per chanel basis
  • RCA/3.5mm out (optionally XLR and toslink)
  • 2-3 controllable GPIOs (e.g. for switching the amplifier or support for an IR remote)