Pirate Radio poor audio quality. (Rasbian Stretch)


#1

I just recently redid my Pirate radio install from scratch with Raspbian Stretch (full version). Every thing installed Ok but the audio is now all noisy and scratchy. I had a friend redo his Pirate Radio install and he now has the same poor quality noisy scratchy sound that I have. Pi Zero W + pHat Beat.
On the pHat Beat page it states, “Our software does not support Raspbian Wheezy”.
But on the Pirate Radio page it talks about using Stretch, “Currently, our internet radio installer is best supported by Stretch Lite”.
First question is does it matter if you use the Full version or the Lite version?
I find setup so much easier with the full version, no having to sudo nano and maybe make a typo. I just set it to boot to Command Line when done.
Second question, does it matter if you use Jessie or Stretch?
My current install was done some time ago with Jessie. It doesn’t have the noisy sound, but does have the pops when changing channel etc. A few weeks back I tried to do a new install on Jessie and it would not work. I got no sound at all when done the setup. And nothing I did would start it. I pushed play pause, channel up down and all I got was pops. I ended up going back to an old image I made of a working setup.

Some time today I plan to have another go at installing on Jessie, unless I’m advised not to. And maybe try Stretch lite instead of full?


#2

I’d advise using Stretch. It’s more recent and we aim to have best compatibility with the most recent version of Raspbian, although we try to make things backwards compatible where possible.

It shouldn’t really matter whether you use Stretch or Stretch Lite. There’s a trade-off between the (greater) time taken to burn a full Stretch SD card versus more time taken to install stuff that’s missing on Stretch Lite as part of the install process. So, if you prefer having the desktop environment, then that’s what you should go for!

As far as the scratchy audio, @gadgetoid will be able to give a much better answer about that than I could. :-)


Pirate Radio Audio Issue - Scratchy
#3

Not sure what to do now? The pops when changing channels are gone, but the sound quality is terrible. Painful to listen too on some stations. I’d put it down to a failed install but my buddy had the same results when he redid his setup. He also went back to a Jessie install he did earlier.


#4

Looks like I’m not the only one, Pirate Radio Audio Issue - Scratchy


#5

Ok, your Pirate Radio installer does not work (for me) with Jessie. I get nothing but a few pop sounds on boot up. No VU meter and no sound at all. Pressed every button repeatedly, the only one that does anything other than generate a pop sound is the power button that does a shut down. I tried it multiple times all with the same results.
In Stretch its very poor audio quality that’s not worth listening too. No pops on channel change though.
So what is one to do now?


#6

Hi,
I bought the Pirate Radio Kit a few days ago,
did everything as posted in the tutorial and had the same issues.

The scratchy sound could easily be changed to great sound.

Just edit vlcd in /usr/bin:

sudo nano /usr/bin/vlcd

and change: --compressor-makeup-gain 12.0
to: --compressor-makeup-gain 0

this compressor should just be used as a limiter and needs no makeup gain…

I thought about sending it back to Pimoroni but now I’m impressed by the sound.

Greetz, CSX


#7

Flashing a new Stretch image to my card as I type this. I saw you other post with the solution in the other thread. The one line installer should have it in it so we’ll see how things go. Thanks.


#8

Just did up a new card with Stretch and ran the one line installer. Audio was still scratchy, but after manually doing the edit above it sounds Ok. Mine was showing compressor-makeup-gain 12.0. I changed it to compressor-makeup-gain 0.0. No pops on channel change either.