Home Assistant Community

Cheap wifi speaker as tts player

#1

I am looking for a chep wifi, not bt speaker to use for tts. Any suggestions? Sonos amd likes are too pricey

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#2

Google Home Mini

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#3

I really dont need Google assistant. Only a local speaker

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#4

Welll, you asked for a cheap WLAN speaker and the Google Home Mini is about 35€.

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#5

I know. But allergic to all named google. I ordered a Jam Symphony.

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#6

Does that speaker integrate easily with HA?

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#7

I dont know yet. We jave to see when it arrive

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#8

Im in the same boat, cannot get Google TTS to work with sonos, I have a google home mini, but my girlfriend does not like the idea of google home/alexa devices always listening. Can you disable the mic. on Google Home and just use it as a speaker?

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#9

How about a build your own… https://www.home-assistant.io/components/media_player.snapcast/

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#10

That device is based on the latest version of LinkPlay (latest verion simply adds Amazon Alexa feature).

There are many brands of speakers using the LinkPlay protocol (iEast, AudioCast, August, JAM, etc). It has been reverse-engineered and the speaker can be controlled using HTTP commands. There are a few existing threads in this forum discussing LinkPlay (and I believe at least one person has created a custom component):
https://community.home-assistant.io/search?q=linkplay

Be aware that these speakers can do things on your network without your knowledge. For example, I have an August speaker (also uses LinkPlay) and, after I installed pi-hole on my network, discovered the speaker was pinging a (Chinese) web-site every 2 seconds. No idea why it needed to do that so I redirected it to ping itself (and it has not affected its ability to play music).

One other thing, it needs your WiFi password to connect to your WiFi network … and stores it unencrypted. If I recall correctly, at least one of the HTTP commands returns general information about the speaker, including the WiFi password. Not the best approach for securing passwords …

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#12

Hi Yuran,
very interested in the Jam Symphony as well.
Let us know if it works ok with HA

thank you

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#13

Thanks for the info. Will keep it in mind

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#14

Did you use Pi-Hole to redirect the ping back to itself? I’m trying to do the same redirect, I’m running HassOS and pi-hole as an add-on if that makes a difference.

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#15

Welcome to the Home Assistant community!

The approach I used may not be for everyone because it causes some loss of functionality. The speaker loses the ability to locate Internet radio stations by host name (only works by IP address) therefore its app can no longer be used to play Internet radio. This was not a drawback for me but, understandably, might be a significant one for others.

First thing I did was blacklist baidu.com and sina.ca.com. That simply prevented the speaker from successfully connecting to their servers but, of course, did not stop it from trying to connect to them (i.e. failed attempts continued to flood my local network).

The solution was inspired by these two references:

I add file /etc/dnsmasq.d/99-bypass.conf containing:

# Self DNS, silences DNS requests
dhcp-option=tag:selfDNS,6,127.0.0.1


# Silence DNS requests from August WiFi Speaker
dhcp-host=XX:XX:XX:XX:XX:XX,set:selfDNS

Replace XX:XX:XX:XX:XX:XX with the MAC address of your August WiFi speaker.

All DNS requests from the speaker are now directed to itself (127.0.0.1) and are no longer fielded by pihole. As mentioned, the drawback is the speaker can no longer resolve radio station URLs by hostname (because it no longer has the ability to use DNS to perform the lookup) and the app can no longer be used to select radio stations to play on the speaker.

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