Author Topic: Looking for a new Streamer  (Read 898 times)

Offline spm3

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Looking for a new Streamer
« on: August 09, 2017, 06:56:32 AM »
Hello all,

I currently have the SimAudio Moon 180 MiND Streamer. This is an older streamer, and it does not have MQA compatibility.
I am looking to upgrade my streamer (maybe get a streamer and a ripper together).
I was looking into the BlueSound Vault 2 which is a streamer and ripper all in one - http://www.bluesound.com/en-us/products/vault-2/?cl

Does anyone have experience with that or recommend another brand that is better music quality wise?


Thanks,
Shawn

Offline Nick B

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Re: Looking for a new Streamer
« Reply #1 on: August 09, 2017, 08:51:45 AM »
Hello all,

I currently have the SimAudio Moon 180 MiND Streamer. This is an older streamer, and it does not have MQA compatibility.
I am looking to upgrade my streamer (maybe get a streamer and a ripper together).
I was looking into the BlueSound Vault 2 which is a streamer and ripper all in one - http://www.bluesound.com/en-us/products/vault-2/?cl

Does anyone have experience with that or recommend another brand that is better music quality wise?


Thanks,
Shawn

Shawn,
One of the guys here uses Bluesound and is quite pleased with it iirc. I have an Auralic Aries Mini and like it quite a bit. If you used an Auralic, it has MQA ability of sorts as Auralic uses their own methodology for "unfolding" the MQA files. I don't use the Auralic software any longer as I use Roon. So Roon, Tidal and the Mini are a great combination for me. The Mini is not a ripper. You can add internal storage to the Mini. Right now, I'm just using an external drive via USB. I got a linear power supply for the Mini via Mojo Audio. The Mini can do DSD, although I've never played with that. My dac can play up to 384 and Roon has upsampling capability. So that gives me plenty of flexibility. As to the sound quality, it is quite excellent

Nick
ICEpower 1200as2 stereo amp
Audio Hungary APR 204 preamp
KEF LS 50 speakers
Border Patrol SE dac
Auralic Aries Mini
Roon & Tidal
Don Sachs phono
Basis Ovation turntable
Graham 1.5 T tonearm
AT-ML150 cartridge
PI Audio Uber
All cables by Gary A

Offline Emil

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Re: Looking for a new Streamer
« Reply #2 on: August 09, 2017, 10:02:39 AM »
I believe  the Auralic works with Apple products only otherwise go Bluesound

FYI
"Today I didn't even have to use my A.K.
I got to say it was a good day"
    --Ice Cube

Offline Nick B

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Re: Looking for a new Streamer
« Reply #3 on: August 09, 2017, 10:40:20 AM »
See this link regarding Android.
http://www.digitalaudioreview.net/2017/04/auralic-firmware-v5-0-adds-dsp-engine-web-browser-control/
Some very nice upgrades from Auralic in their beta 5. I haven't kept up with it as I've been running Roon.
Nick
ICEpower 1200as2 stereo amp
Audio Hungary APR 204 preamp
KEF LS 50 speakers
Border Patrol SE dac
Auralic Aries Mini
Roon & Tidal
Don Sachs phono
Basis Ovation turntable
Graham 1.5 T tonearm
AT-ML150 cartridge
PI Audio Uber
All cables by Gary A

Offline spm3

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Re: Looking for a new Streamer
« Reply #4 on: August 14, 2017, 06:37:51 AM »
Okay,

Let's say I get the BlueSound Vault 2 (I am leaning toward that), will I need to get a new DAC as well that decodes Hi-Rez files?
Right now I have a SimAudio 300D, but now I see newer DAC's advertising that they can decode MQA files too or something like that.. Is this true?

If so, what DAC should I look into upgrading to for my Tidal MQA listening with the BlueSound Vault 2?

Offline tmazz

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Re: Looking for a new Streamer
« Reply #5 on: August 14, 2017, 08:04:32 AM »
Okay,

Let's say I get the BlueSound Vault 2 (I am leaning toward that), will I need to get a new DAC as well that decodes Hi-Rez files?
Right now I have a SimAudio 300D, but now I see newer DAC's advertising that they can decode MQA files too or something like that.. Is this true?

If so, what DAC should I look into upgrading to for my Tidal MQA listening with the BlueSound Vault 2?

MQA can operate in two modes, software and hardware decoding. The Bluesound node will do software decoding of an MQA file and the output that file as a standard 24/96 bitstream. So if your SimAudio DAC can handle 24/96 you are good to go.

The next step up is to get a DAC that can decode the MQA file directly in hardware. According to MQA a hardware decodes signal produces sound quality similar to what one would get from a native 24/194 file. The hardware chips used to decode MQA within a DAC are also custom programed for each DAC to take into consideration the sonic signature of the DAC so that the final signal is (supposedly) a perfect replica of the original signal. Keep in mind that this is this marketing speak from MQA (and CDs were introduced by Sony as "perfect sound forever.") I have not spent anytime listening seriously to any hardware MQA DACS nor have I had the opportunity to compare hardware and software decoding of the same file, so the marketing releases are all the information I have top go on.

I do like what I hear from the Tidal Masters (their name for the library of MQA encoded albums) using the software decoding in my Bluesound Node (1). Unfortunately there is really no way of knowing how much of that sound is due to the fact that they are MQA files vs something else that was done during the mastering of the MQA versions.

If you already have Tidal Hi-Fi (the version that streams at full Redbook bandwidths (as opposed to the cheaper option that only sends you mp3 versions of the songs) you don't need to do anything to recieve the MQA files, accerss to them is included with a Tidal Hi-Fi subscription. If you do have Tidal Hi-Fi check out the Masters section now. MQA files are supposed to sound better than Redbook files, even if they are not decoded.
Remember, it's all about the music........

Nola Boxers
Sunfire True SW Super Jr (2)
Quicksilver Mid Monos
ARC SP-9
VPI HW-19 Mk IV/SDS/SME IV/Sumiko Blue Pt. Special
EE Minmax DAC/Bluesound Node/Denon 2910
TWL Power Cords/MIT Cables

Offline spm3

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Re: Looking for a new Streamer
« Reply #6 on: August 18, 2017, 06:45:29 AM »
Okay,

Let's say I get the BlueSound Vault 2 (I am leaning toward that), will I need to get a new DAC as well that decodes Hi-Rez files?
Right now I have a SimAudio 300D, but now I see newer DAC's advertising that they can decode MQA files too or something like that.. Is this true?

If so, what DAC should I look into upgrading to for my Tidal MQA listening with the BlueSound Vault 2?

MQA can operate in two modes, software and hardware decoding. The Bluesound node will do software decoding of an MQA file and the output that file as a standard 24/96 bitstream. So if your SimAudio DAC can handle 24/96 you are good to go.

The next step up is to get a DAC that can decode the MQA file directly in hardware. According to MQA a hardware decodes signal produces sound quality similar to what one would get from a native 24/194 file. The hardware chips used to decode MQA within a DAC are also custom programed for each DAC to take into consideration the sonic signature of the DAC so that the final signal is (supposedly) a perfect replica of the original signal. Keep in mind that this is this marketing speak from MQA (and CDs were introduced by Sony as "perfect sound forever.") I have not spent anytime listening seriously to any hardware MQA DACS nor have I had the opportunity to compare hardware and software decoding of the same file, so the marketing releases are all the information I have top go on.

I do like what I hear from the Tidal Masters (their name for the library of MQA encoded albums) using the software decoding in my Bluesound Node (1). Unfortunately there is really no way of knowing how much of that sound is due to the fact that they are MQA files vs something else that was done during the mastering of the MQA versions.

If you already have Tidal Hi-Fi (the version that streams at full Redbook bandwidths (as opposed to the cheaper option that only sends you mp3 versions of the songs) you don't need to do anything to recieve the MQA files, accerss to them is included with a Tidal Hi-Fi subscription. If you do have Tidal Hi-Fi check out the Masters section now. MQA files are supposed to sound better than Redbook files, even if they are not decoded.


Hi tmazz,

I got the BlueSound Node 2 yesterday.

This is my DAC's specs: http://www.simaudio.com/en/product/39-digital-to-analog-converter.html
It says it has "Internal upsampling which uses 24-bit/352.8kHz processing. BurrBrown PCM1793 high-resolution 24-bit/192-kHz D/A and 8X oversampling digital filter. All inputs accept a signal up to 24-bit/192kHz resolution"
So I assume it should work with the MQA files?


Thanks,
Shawn

Offline tmazz

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Re: Looking for a new Streamer
« Reply #7 on: August 18, 2017, 10:32:08 AM »
Doesn't look like it will decode MQA files for you, but it will handle the 24/96 bitstream put out by the Bluesound after it does software decoding on an MQA file.

So in short, yes the combination of the two units should allow you to listen to Tidal MQA encoded files.
Remember, it's all about the music........

Nola Boxers
Sunfire True SW Super Jr (2)
Quicksilver Mid Monos
ARC SP-9
VPI HW-19 Mk IV/SDS/SME IV/Sumiko Blue Pt. Special
EE Minmax DAC/Bluesound Node/Denon 2910
TWL Power Cords/MIT Cables

Offline Nick B

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Re: Looking for a new Streamer
« Reply #8 on: August 18, 2017, 10:46:16 AM »
Congratulations, Shawn. This should work out great for you
Nick
ICEpower 1200as2 stereo amp
Audio Hungary APR 204 preamp
KEF LS 50 speakers
Border Patrol SE dac
Auralic Aries Mini
Roon & Tidal
Don Sachs phono
Basis Ovation turntable
Graham 1.5 T tonearm
AT-ML150 cartridge
PI Audio Uber
All cables by Gary A