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Listening to music over wifi?

Hey lazyweb! Long time, no write.

I’m wondering what setup people use to deal with the following situation. Upstairs, I have an Ubuntu 8.04 server with 71GB of MP3s. Downstairs, I have a stereo system. In between the two is a wireless network. How can I listen to the music downstairs, without simply copying the lot (or subsets thereof) onto a local disk on some appliance down there?

Currently, I’m using a VNC client on a Nokia 770 to control a JuK window on the server. This works great, believe it or not! KDE 3 can be coaxed into providing a fantastic UI for a small touchscreen. This then uses Pulseaudio to transmit the sound output using the ESD protocol over TCP to the ESD server on the N770, and the N770 plays back the sound.

Until a few months ago, this worked great. However, something (either hardware changes, network topology changes, or an upgrade to Ubuntu 8.04 on the server) has resulted in effective bitrates between the server and the N770 dropping frequently — hence the audio drops out or changes pitch, rendering it unlistenable :(

I’ve tried using UPNP servers (specifically mediatomb, ushare, and Twonkymedia), with the built-in Media Streamer app on the N770. All fail. MP3s cut off near the end, M3U playlists aren’t supported, and sometimes Media Streamer just locks up. In addition it’s pretty messy trying to get the UPNP servers to notice changes to the MP3 collection.

I’ve also tried using Squeezecenter (nee Slimserver), but the MP3 stream playback support on the N770 is pretty atrocious; there are audible decoding artifacts.

So — anyone got a suggestion? Even something involving iTunes might be helpful — as long as it can at least preserve the Linux server. I’m unlikely to host the full MP3 collection on anything else…