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Mac Book w/Airport Extreme for Music Server?


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Howdy everyone..

I am in the process of building a music server to be run through my existing hi fi set up (which consists of BAT integrated and Audio Physics Virgo 2 speakers). I'm a bit of a novice and have some newbie questions and concerns that I need some advice on. I am looking for the best sound quality possible...


Here's the big question:

I already own a MacBook, a Western Digital Mybook drive, and a PS Audio DLIII DAC. Is it possible, using a wireless router like the Airport Extreme, to have all of my music files on the Hard Drive and just control it from the Mac Book remotely? or would they physically need to be "tethered"? I would ideally love to sit with my Macbook on my couch, which is some distance from my equipment racks, where the DAC and HD will reside. The other option of course would be to get a dedicated MacBook or Mac Mini for server and just leave it hooked up--but, you know, I'd prefer not to spend the money if I don't need to...


ALSO: has anybody tried the HRT Music Streamer DAC? i hear good things..


Thanks in advance!


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  • 1 month later...

I am probably the last person here who should respond, but since no one else has, I'll give it a try. I am using my wireless network router in my house to stream from the laptop to the airport extreme and can do so from anywhere in the house. My music is (will be) stored on a separate hard drive from the laptop so it has to have a connection. Mine is USB. You can take the optical output from the express and using the Toslink to mini type digital cable, into your DL III, which I am also using. The difference is that I have the laptop, hard drives and DLIII in one place and the AE in another for another system. I believe you will have to connect the hard drive to the laptop and then you can put the AE and DLIII anywhere. I hope I'm correct. If not, I would appreciate someone else adding their knowledge.


"Information is not knowledge,

Knowledge is not wisdom,

Wisdom is not truth,

Truth is not beauty,

Beauty is not love,

Love is not music and

Music is the best" -Frank Zappa

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To wirelessly stream music from computer to your DAC you need the Airport Express and a mini-toslink to toslink optical cable. However the Airport Express does not allow you to connect a hard drive to its USB port. Streaming is limited to 44.1/16 - which is fine for cd rips, but not so great if you are interested in higher resolution downloads.


The Airport Extreme, on the other hand, will allow you to connect a hard disk, but it doesn't stream music.


If you have one of each, your plan will work.


I don't have any experience of the HRT Music Streamer DAC.


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I should add...


You might already have a router that will allow you to connect your hard disk? In which case an Airport Express will be a cost effective option.


On the other hand, if you're thinking of getting an Airport Express and an Airport Extreme just to stream music, then I suspect you'd be better off going with the mac mini instead.


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