A power efficient setup with a good quality speaker


I have a respeaker (2 mic array) for my rhasspy and I would like to combine the same hardware for snapcast to play music.

My requierment is to have it power efficent as I dont want to pay electricity for something that will not be used 24/7.

So I have been looking at speakers that I can power over usb & use the 3.5mm plug but the quaility have been horrible, it could work for rhasspy but no way for any type of music.

So I was looking at a AMP hat to power the speaker from the rpi with some hope (nothing confirmed) that it would use less power or if I would be able to turn it off when not used. The idea was to combine the respeaker hat & amp but looks like the pins are over lapping besides the i2c when I check https://pinout.xyz/pinout

As an alternative to skip the extra hat I would also be OK if there would be any good quality speakers that would turn on automatically (without me needing to have a extra AMP hat) when there is sound over 3.5mm so I can reuse the respeaker, I am a bit sceptic to solve this my self by adding relays to the rpi.I got a tip on system audio’s SA saxo series that would automatically turn off after 20 min but I am not sure if it will automatically turn on. The best answer on a speaker I found so far is is from audioengine (Support Inquiry — Audioengine).

Is there anybody that built a power efficent setup with good audio quality or have any idea on how I should go forward?

I tried the same at one point, but there is one big problem.
Snapcast really need dedicated access to the control of the sound card, so Rhasspy will be able to access it then.

ALSA sharing turned out to be impossible due to a missing timer feedback.
PulseAudio can allow both programs to share the device, but PulseAudio is not meant to run in a headless setup, so you will have a fight with that.
Jack is not supported and Pipewire is still too early to be adopted and the headless setup is a bit shaky too.

Thanks mate for sharing your experience, I will separate the two things based on that, you saved me allot of headache :slight_smile: