How to use the Mini Media Player card in Home Assistant

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A digital illustration of a cyberpunk cassette player.

Discover the popular Mini Media Player custom card, a versatile and compact addition to your Home Assistant Dashboard. This guide will walk you through installing, configuring, and customizing this feature-rich component. Renowned for its extensive customization options, the Mini Media Player, developed by Karl Kihlström, is a community-favourite alternative to the official Media Control Card.

A screenshot of the Home Assistant Dashboard showing the native media player card and the Mini Media Player custom card.
The default Media Control Card (top) and Mini Media Player (bottom)

Contents

Easy Installation via Home Assistant Community Store (HACS)

For installation, the recommended route is through the Home Assistant Community Store (HACS). This user-friendly method bypasses manual installation complexities. Simply set up HACS (guidance available on the official website) using your GitHub account. Post-installation, locate the Mini Media Player under the Frontend section in HACS and install it. This approach does not require restarting Home Assistant, enabling immediate use.

Intuitive Configuration for Maximum Utility

The Mini Media Player is celebrated for its compactness, offering enhanced functionality in a smaller package. Unlike its larger counterpart, it features a bottom-positioned progress bar and a prominently placed volume control. Configuring the card is a breeze, thanks to the UI configurator, allowing you to:

A screenshot of the Home Assistant Dashboard showing the configuration options of the Mini Media Player custom card. In the screenshot, the user is prompted to select an entity, give it a name and icon, select the artwork type, and select the source.
The many options of the Mini Media Player custom card for Home Assistant

Artwork Display: A Comparative Overview

The Mini Media Player offers various artwork display options. The 'material' and 'cover' settings are particularly noteworthy, as other settings may render text illegible against bright backgrounds (as illustrated in the 'cover-fit' image below).

Advanced Features: Elevating Your Mini Media Player Experience

Beyond the basic UI configuration, the Mini Media Player boasts advanced options, accessible via the code editor. These include:

Text-to-Speech Integration

Incorporate a text-to-speech field to utilize Home Assistant's TTS engines like google_translate, amazon_polly, or cloud (Nabu Casa) with simple YAML lines:

Home Assistant Mini Media Player 05
tts:
  platform: cloud

Speaker Grouping

For owners of Sonos, Bose SoundTouch, Yamaha MusicCast, Squeezebox, Bluesound, Snapcast, or Linkplay compatible speakers, the card allows in-app speaker grouping. Note that some brands may have limited feature availability.

A screenshot of the Home Assistant Dashboard showing the Mini Media Player custom card display a speaker group.
A multi-room setup with the Mini Media Player (source: GitHub)

Shortcut buttons in the Mini Media Player custom card

Perhaps my current favourite function of the Mini Media Player card is the ability to add shortcut buttons. Sure, you could add this using button cards placed below the custom card, but this way of doing things keeps everything nice and compact.

In my case, I use the shortcuts to tune in to radio stations I can't access using voice commands on my Google Nest speakers. There are, once again, many options available when adding shortcuts. The basic one seen in the screenshot was created using the following lines of YAML:

shortcuts:
  columns: 4
  buttons:
    - name: Absolute Radio
      type: music
      id: URL_OF_RADIO_STATION
A screenshot of the Home Assistant Dashboard showing the Mini Media Player custom card displaying a shortcut button for a radio station titled 'Absolute Radio'.

The type can be basically any media, such as music, a television show, video, a certain channel, or a playlist. Obviously, the Mini Media Player custom card for Home Assistant can't just be used for audio players, but also compatible televisions and streaming boxes. Using the latter, you can create shortcuts to any Spotify playlist, by adding the ID of the playlist using the following syntax: spotify:user:XXXXXXX:playlist:37i9dQZF1DZ06evO2O09Hg

Alternatively, you can also trigger a script from a shortcut, or change the source from one room to another. Using the type service, you can execute just about anything.

A portrait photo oif Liam Alexander Colman, the author, creator, and owner of Home Assistant Guide wearing a suit.

About Liam Alexander Colman

is an experienced Home Assistant user who has been utilizing the platform for a variety of projects over an extended period. His journey began with a Raspberry Pi, which quickly grew to three Raspberry Pis and eventually a full-fledged server. Liam's current operating system of choice is Unraid, with Home Assistant comfortably running in a Docker container.
With a deep understanding of the intricacies of Home Assistant, Liam has an impressive setup, consisting of various Zigbee devices, and seamless integrations with existing products such as his Android TV box. For those interested in learning more about Liam's experience with Home Assistant, he shares his insights on how he first started using the platform and his subsequent journey.

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