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Streaming and Hifi

Folks

 

I have for a few years now been keeping an eye on Sonos and decided to go and review this only to be very dissapointed I felt there was no richness to the quality of the sound. I do however want to be able to stream music around the house and know of Naim and Linn both of which are not cheap (especially the latter). I do recongisse that you get what you pay for but does anyone have any thougths on what I should consder?

 

My brief is that it must be scalable and be able to link in with other hifi's (via the aux port?) but the long term aim would be to start with one system and replace my other systems in years to come. 

 

Thanks 

 

 

stevebrock's picture
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RE: Streaming and Hifi

Squeezebox Touch if you can find one!

 

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RE: Streaming and Hifi

The Cambridge Audio Stream Magic 6 is an excellent, inexpensive streamer which recently won a WHF award. Another worth considering is the Pioneer N-50. I think both offer great value for money and both sound fantastic.

Anonymous
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RE: Streaming and Hifi

Have you considered Apple Airplay and related devices (Airport Express, Apple TV's etc...)?

pyou could have a basic set up in the rooms you require all with an Apple Airport Express and all be connected via your iTunes account etc...

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RE: Streaming and Hifi

The OP was disappointed with Sonos. My guess is that he won't be happy with any "cheap" options.

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RE: Streaming and Hifi

The Linn Sneaky DS can be found at reasonable money.

"We should no more let numbers define audio quality than we should let chemical analysis be the arbiter of fine wines."  Nelson Pass

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RE: Streaming and Hifi

there's a few Squeezebox Touch on ebay

Overdose's picture
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RE: Streaming and Hifi

The OP makes no mention of what sort of Sonos system was used. If just the ZP90, then any old streamer could be tried in lieu, plugged into the amp.

However, if a complete Sonos setup was used, including speaker units, then I can well understand the system not being particularly 'hifi'. As convenient such a system is, I imagine it will not have the same imaging as a traditional stereo hifi or pair of active stereo speakers, more mono than stereo, regardless of drivers used, unless it can be set up in stereo.

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RE: Streaming and Hifi

Several options I've used with success include:-

 

Apple TV and Sony TA-F630ESD (which comes with its own onboard DAC) - this let me stream WAV files off my Touch via the ATV and through to the speakers.  Quality is excellent as is Spotify Premium (also on my Touch).  

Onkyo TX-8050 - IMO the best hifi bargain out there just now.  Does all the much more heralded Marantz does but with better connectivity, a more powerul amp, more digital input (2x coax, 2x optical) plus a USB input on the fascia which lets you use an external HDD or another digital player.  You access the content via the Onkyo handset.  

If you can land a Sony amp like the one above, then expect the ATC and the Sony to cost you less than £250 all in.  The Sony amp delivers decent power at 90wpc and don't write it off on the back of it being "just a Sony", their ES lineup wasn't shabby by any means and it holds up better than you'd give credit for now.

The Onkyo is worth tracking down; owners reviews are incredibly positive, though reviews are limited from most of the magazines, though Gramophone have it a decent review as did Paul Rigby in Hifi World (4 Globes).  Expect to pay around £300-400 or thereabouts.

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