No support for Audiophonics I-Sabre DAC ES9023 TCXO ? :(

Max2Play Home 2016 (en) Forums Max2Play on Raspberry PI No support for Audiophonics I-Sabre DAC ES9023 TCXO ? :(

This topic contains 11 replies, has 5 voices, and was last updated by  jcu-muc premium 2 hours, 8 minutes ago.

Viewing 12 posts - 1 through 12 (of 12 total)
  • 6. September 2015 at 10:59 #15630


    I got this (beautifull) DAC with my raspberry PI 2.

    Audiophonics I-Sabre DAC ES9023 TCXO Raspberry Pi A+ B+ 2.0 / I2S

    It perfectly works with picore player using “I2S audio generic”
    I tried several options with the licensed version of max2play in Raspberry pi settings but i do not see the i2S audio output in “Set Audio Output on Raspberry Pi” (and got no output sound).

    Could you explain me how to solve the issue ?

    I use Max2play 2.20

    7. September 2015 at 13:40 #15633

    Hi Mrpink,
    Please try using the option “HiFiBerry DAC+” in Raspberry Settings. Since your sound card uses the same drivers as HiFiBerry, that could do the trick.

    27. November 2016 at 10:53 #24279

    Hello Heiner,

    I just changed from piCoreplayer to M2P and using the licensed version 2.34
    I have a similar issue.
    I am using Wyred4Sound dac2 with Sabre and i2s over GPIO.
    It works perfectly with piCoreplayer using “I2S Audio generic” and Squeezelite settings
    – hw:CARD=sndrpihifiberry
    – ALSA setting: 80 : 4

    I tried to use the HiFiBerry DAC+ without success, the option hw:CARD=sndrpihifiberry does not apear

    Any chance to implement a generic i2s?
    Otherwise need to go back to pCP :-(((

    29. November 2016 at 11:42 #24296


    I have an Audiophonics I-Sabre DAC in one of my RPi setups (it’s a RaspDAC streamer box). Please follow the instructions below, might also work for you:

    1. Install Max2Play HiFiBerry Image

    2. On the HifiBerry Tab:

    Hifi Berry DAC (PI A/B)

    3. On the Audioplayer Tab:

    Squeezelite –> Edit advanced options

    sysdefault - snd_rpi_hifiberry_dac, - Default Audio Device, CARD=sndrpihifiberry

    ALSA Parameter:

    Command Line Options:
    -o hw:0 -V Digital

    This command line option noticeably improved the sound quality, at least to my ears. Please see the following Wiki post for more details:

    @ Max2Play team – questions about M2P support of I-Sabre DACs are becoming more frequent. Is there any chance you could add proper support for the following DAC in the next release, i.e. so it can just be chosen in the dropdown list? There may also be additional parameters which might further improve sound quality. Please see

    AUDIOPHONICS I-Sabre V3 DAC ES9023 TCXO Raspberry Pi 3 / Pi 2 A+ B+ / I2S

    Best regards,

    • This reply was modified 1 week, 2 days ago by  jcu-muc.
    29. November 2016 at 23:24 #24361

    Hi JCU,

    Thanks a lot for the tip!! It works perfectly!! ;-D

    I could not set the command line option because I have no idea how to determine the card’s slot or the sound card’s mixer device as per the instructions in the link. Any idea how to know that?

    I agree with your request to the @ Max2Play team to include support for Sabre

    30. November 2016 at 0:24 #24362

    Hi Popper,

    Very happy that you were able to get things working, I appreciate it and understand, as I struggled for a while as well. I honestly believe that Max2Play is the best platform out there, at least for me, as it offers Logitech Media Server as a basis. Volumio, RuneAudio have better out of the box support for Sabre DACs, but I need the superior library management etc. that LMS offers.

    Regarding the command line option, SSH into your RPi and enter “amixer” and see what it outputs. That is the official procedure. That being said, that didn’t work for me since evidently the Audiophonics Sabre has no hardware volume control. I just went ahead and entered -o hw:0 -V Digital on good faith and was pleased with the results. If you encounter problems, you can always go back and delete the command line options and carry on. Again, the command line options worked well for me and the sound was instantly much deeper, warmer, richer – essentially what I had been expecting from the DAC to begin with. 😉

    If you are a Linux newbie such as myself, you can SSH via Windows with PuTTY, available here: To determine the IP address you need to SSH into, go to http://max2play/ and go to the tab WiFi/LAN – there you will see the IP address. Username: pi Password: raspberry

    Edit: just for the hell of it, if you need admin privileges for anything else, you can su with pw: max2play

    Best regards,

    1. December 2016 at 15:48 #24464

    Hi guys,
    Some good news are on the way. We have been working with the guys from Audiophonics and will soon start offering solutions combined with Max2Play. More details are on the way and next week we will have new products in our shop. The Sabre DAC V3 will take center stage and we will also start offering a complete solution with a great case. Stay tuned!
    The Sabre is already available as a selection in the Raspberry Settings in our current beta update.

    1. December 2016 at 15:51 #24465

    Great !!!!

    1. December 2016 at 15:57 #24466

    That is FANTASTIC news!!!

    Best regards,

    1. December 2016 at 20:58 #24475

    Hi JCU,

    Thanks for all your useful hints. I have also tried several platforms and HW configurations. From MPD to PiCore.

    I am really happy that M2P will offer support for Audiophonics !!!
    As for my experience with M2P … hummm how to start?

    Well let’s put it this way, I was seduced by the capabilities that seem superior to piCore, especially the integration of Kodi as I also use it.

    Unfortunately despite your help I need to go back to piCore, before explaining why, Let me describe my set up.

    I use a Wyred4Sound DAC2 equipped with 9018 ESS Sabre DAC a 9018 ESS Sabre DAC

    with input of I2S over GPIO using a HDMI connector and cable. I use a HDMI output module bought at Audiophonics

    The set ups is similar to:

    So ….

    With piCore the play is smooth using Generic I2S and hw:CARD=sndrpihifiberry
    Hi resolution files play perfect and the whole thing is stable. I use piCore 2.6 since the 3.02 version produces a horrible crackling when switching from 44.1 KHz to 96KHz.

    With your help I managed to get the sound out but could not manage to transfer volume control to the DAC wih -o hw:0 –V Digital

    It took me a while to figure out the output of a mixer which was:

    Simple mixer control ‘PCM’,0
    Capabilities: pvolume pvolume-joined pswitch pswitch-joined
    Playback channels: Mono
    Limits: Playback -10239 – 400
    Mono: Playback 100 [97%] [1.00dB] [on]

    Then I realized that I had to replace Digital for PCM and tried -o hw:0 –V PCM … but did not work

    I tried the option on LMS -> Settings -> player -> Audio -> Volume Control -> Output level is fixed at 100%
    … and it worked !! (I wonder what the difference is with the transfer with –o hw:0 –V Digital

    Then I tried to play Hi-Res files and …. After a few seconds and horrible crackling, the play back simply stops >:-(((

    No way to get it back. The output of a mixer was

    Simple mixer control ‘PCM’,0
    Capabilities: pvolume pvolume-joined pswitch pswitch-joined
    Playback channels: Mono
    Limits: Playback -10239 – 400
    Mono: Playback -25 [96%] [-0.25dB] [on]

    The difference is the Mono: line where I figured that 96% is the volume level but still do not know that the other mean

    I then reinstalled from scratch but the problem is still there, no Hi-Res play

    Bottom line …. I am back to piCore 2.6 with a license M2P I do not use

    The output or piCore amixer is

    Simple mixer control ‘PCM’,0
    Capabilities: pvolume pvolume-joined pswitch pswitch-joined
    Playback channels: Mono
    Limits: Playback -10239 – 400
    Mono: Playback -2000 [77%] [-20.00dB] [on]

    Where the Mono Line is completely different

    @M2P team: It would be great if there would be a I2S generic support and help to figure out the best parameters

    8. December 2016 at 16:23 #24691

    Hello Popper72,

    Normally you only need to choose the Sabre DAC under the Raspberry Settings.
    Then you go into the audioplayer menu. Here you can find the advanced settings of squeezelite. There, like you already did, you choose the “sysdefault snd_hifiberry_dac”.

    Now the necessary settings are automatically accepted. If you want to enter a specific output device with “-o hw:0” please note that normally “hw:0” is the onboard chip of the Raspberry Pi. The onboard chip can also be disabling in the Raspberry settings. After disable the onboard sound please reboot your device. Now the Sabre DAC can be addressed with “-o hw: 0”.

    However, the function “-V ” is not possible here.
    The ALSA control for volume adjustment is not working with this setup.

    8. December 2016 at 17:58 #24702

    Hi Christoph,

    I see that M2P 2.39 is out as of today and now natively supports the Audiophonics I-Sabre-V3 via the Raspberry Settings tab – thank you!

    Just to confirm:

    I have selected Audiophonics I-Sabre-V3 and in the Audioplayer tab / Squeezelite Advanced Options added -o hw:0 to the Command Line Options. On the HifiBerry tab, it now reads under Your installed HiFiBerry Card: none

    I guess that is all the way it is supposed to be then?

    Many thanks!

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