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I have a Squeezebox that is connected to an amplifier. I'd like the amplifier to switch on/off whenever the Squeezebox is powered on/off. I don't mind writing some plugin code to SqueezeCenter to do this but in hardware terms I am looking for off-the-shelf components. I imagine that I need some kind of Ethernet controlled power outlet.

I have looked at X10 (I can't bring myself to link to their terrible site), but their product range seems extremely confused and it looks as though I'd have to use both RF and comms-over-mains to implement a computer controlled socket. Does anyone have any alternative suggestions?

Note: Any components should be available and certified for use in the UK.

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4 Answers

You could look for a current sensing switch. Plug the amp into it, and it would turn on when the squeezebox is drawing current. Probably easier than trying to figure out how to talk to the amp.

Here's one at digikey: http://parts.digikey.com/1/parts/945585-switch-current-27-ac-out-cr9321-aca.html You'll need to look around for one that works with your voltage and the squeezebox's current use. (might want to measure that before buying something....)

cheers

cris

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You need a little more rep to be able to post multiple links... –  Johan Sep 14 '09 at 11:49
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Stupid site won't let me put in more than one link.

Here's a project page describing another approach: http://sound.westhost.com/project79.htm

Looks real, but as the guy said, don't do this if you're not comfortable working with 120v (220v in your case) He does have component values listed for 220v operation.

good luck

cris

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up vote 2 down vote accepted

Thanks for the answers. I recently found a couple of projects by Felix Mueller that interface with Squeezebox hardware. One in particular allows IR remote control of an amplifier's power switch from the Squeezebox - this looks pretty neat and avoids high voltage hacking but of course requires that your amp has an IR remote (mine doesn't).

In summary it seems as though the only route is to construct some additional power switching hardware and Felix describes an implementation of this too - as have others. Such solutions would of course lack the relevant electrical certifications.

Update: At work we now use an Ethernet power-switch manufactured by a German company called ANEL for indicator lamps for our continuous integration environment. This could also be controlled by SqueezeCenter (assuming a plug-in was written).

enter image description here

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My solution to this problem is a Cyrus power amplifier that has a built in music sensing capability to switch it on and off appropriately. Phenomenal sound is a valuable side-benefit. Picked up a Cyrus 8 Power amp for £400. Money very well spent.

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