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NuPrime WR-100 Wi-Fi Audio Adapter


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NuPrime Audio - WR-100

 

$99

 

A bit upscale (more fully featured) competitor to Google Chromecast Audio.

On their forum page, they say they will be coming out with a more expensive version that supports Airplay and Bluetooth.

Main listening (small home office):

Main setup: Surge protector +_iFi  AC iPurifiers >Isol-8 Mini sub Axis Power Conditioning+Isolation>QuietPC Low Noise Server>Roon (Audiolense DRC)>Stack Audio Link II>Kii Control>Kii Three >GIK Room Treatments.

Secondary Listening: Server with Audiolense RC>RPi4 or analog>Matrix Element i Streamer/DAC (XLR)+Schiit Freya>Kii Three .

Bedroom: SBTouch to Cambridge Soundworks Desktop Setup.
Living Room/Kitchen: RPi 3B+ running RoPieee to a pair of Morel Hogtalare. 

All absolute statements about audio are false :)

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  • 1 year later...

Thinking that I might want to try HiRes audio, I ordered a NuPrime WR-100 from our friends at AudioAdvisor.

 

I currently use a wired sonos connect network to get music from my NAS to my 2 channel system. The sonos connect does not support anything above 16/44, so I was looking for an option that would bring in 24/96 music files.

 

Here's how I hooked it up:

I Used the Sonos connect Ethernet output and a generic Ethernet cable to connect the WR-100 to my Household LAN. (The WR-100 also supports 5Ghz wifi, but I didn't test that other than to conFirt that it can connect it to wifi). I used the TOSLink output and a generic TOSLink cable to connect the WR-100 to the DAC in my SA-8005.

 

Test Material:

I bought and downloaded a 24/96 ALAC version of Diana Krall's "Dancing in the Dark" (DiD) from the "Look of Love" Album for $2.50 from HD Tracks. I also have 16/44 ALAC versions of this same song already on my NAS. I listened to DID 16/44 via Sonos and the Coax DAC Input, then 16/44 via the WR-100 and the TOSLink DAC input, then finally the 24/96 ALAC version via the WR-100 and the TOSLink DAC input. (Just for fun, I tried to play the 24/96 ALAS version via the Sonos, but the Sonos system chocked on that.)

 

Results:

The DiD 16/44 version over Sonos clearly sounded best in my system.

DID 16/44 via the WR -100 was flat, and the 24/96 was a bit better, but still not as good as the 16/44 via the Sonos. My DAC recognized and displayed the expected bit rates for each test.

 

So far I'm not sold on the Value of HD Music, but intellectually I agree that with the right gear, 24/96 should sound much better than 16/44. I remain open to revising this opinion with HD optimized gear and when of the streaming services offers HD music. Other than some classical pieces I love, don't really see a need to buy/own HD music, although I'm certainly willing to pay more for HD streaming music once it becomes robustly available and I'm confident that I hear the differerent.

Today I'm confident I hear the difference between 256/320 kbps lossy version and ALAC of a 16/44 file. Hopefully MQA or something like it will hit critical mass and there will be a greater selection and accessibly of HD content.

 

Caveats:

I did no burn in, so I don't know if that would made a difference.

I did not test the NuPrime as a DAC, only as a transport and Ethernet to spdif converter/streamer.

I have the WR-100 downstream from the Sonos via Ethernet so I know if bypassing the Sonos would have improved them SQ.

From prior experience, I have found the TOSLink and Digital Coax inputs to sound equally good on my DAC. To eliminate variables, I probably should have gotten off my duff and done all the tests with TOSLink. But I didn't - that's why I have a remote control collection-lol.

The NuPrime claimes to,have a digital coax output also, but that seems to require a non-standard cable which I didn't bother trying to figure out.

It would be interesting to do, ( but I did not do this) would be do a side by side listen between the NuPrime and the TOSLink output of the Google Chromecast audio.

 

Other thoughts and conclusions:

The NuPrime IOS software app is ok, but not as good as the Sonos or Musicstreamer IOS apps. Also no support for Pandora that I could readily see. It does support Spotify and an internet radio app.

I'm trying to adhere to the practice that new audio toys need ether to give me noticeable sound quality improvement (to me) or grow the quantity of music available at a given locations. I have equally good or better functional streamer components already in my 3 systems, so for me, I didn't find the NuPrime device to add any tangible benefits to my systems. So I'll be sending it back to our friends at AA.

If I had a secondary system not connected to my NAS already, I would definitely keep the NuPrime WR-100 as a $100 option if I didn't want to spend $350 for another sonos connect. As a steamer only, I prefer the sonos connect.

 

But if you want to have a steamer/DAC combo, I think the NuPrime could sound better than the internal DAC On the Sonos connect. It would be worth trying, and could save you $250.

 

Hope this was helpful and/or interesting!

 

Enjoy your music.

Best Stereo System: Wired Sonos Connect -> AQ Cinammon Digital Coax -> Marantz SA-8005 -> AA Black Momba 2 interconnects -> Marantz PM-15S2 -> Kimber 8TC speaker Cables -> Zu Soul Superfly speakers.

 

Ingest> NAS> Distribution: Sony Vaio Laptop ripping via ITunes to Apple Lossless, manually synced to WD Mycloud NAS, Linksys 1900AC Router, Netgear Gig E switch, generic Ethernet cables, TPLinc ethernet power line extenders.

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