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Ayre Acoustics QX-5 Twenty – The Digital Hub


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It installed smoothly and quickly for me. The only issue I had was connecting with my iPad. An app update fixed that. However, today I noticed a number of albums missing, for various reasons. Some manual editing will be required. I'll hold off until I'm sure I want to become a subscriber.

 

It was so much simpler and more functional with LMS controlled with iPeng. Unfortunately, Roon sounds a bit better. The question is, is the difference in sound quality worth putting up with Roon's deficiencies.

 

 

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SonicTransporter i9 > EtherRegen (powered by Uptone JS-2) > opticalRendu (JS-2) > Ayre QX-5 DAC > Ayre KX-R Twenty Preamp > Ayre MX-R Twenty mono amps > YG Kipod Signature Passive speakers.

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I have just purchased the Melco N1ZH connected directly via Ethernet to my QX 5 and tho the Melco isn't Roon friendly at this stage I don't miss it at all, the Melco/QX 5 is a fabulous combination. It was very easy to set up and no hassles using mconnectfree UPNP app to control it. I have read a in a few forums regarding this and for me its working trouble free.

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The Melco has only 24 hours on it now and so it's a little rough around the edges you might say but certainly you can already here the improvement in transparency, increase in soundstage focus and ease. My findings would be different then most since I run my QX 5 direct to my Accuphase A 65 amp. I also prefer the ethernet connections which I feel has a fuller midrange then USB" again this might be due because I don't run a preamp.

 

My basic Ethernet set up is as follows,

 

WireWorld Starlight from Switch to first FMC. Switch & FMC Powered by W4S PS 1 LPS. Have on order W4S new 4amp module to plug the router into once it arrives.

AudioQuest Vodka from 2nd FMC to N1ZH. 2nd FMC battery powered.

AudioQuest Diamond from N1ZH to QX 5.

 

In my system the AQ Ethernet cables have a fuller more transparent sound then the WW Starlight cable ( WW Platinum now avail might be worth a try I suspect). The WW sounded almost hollow with no weight. Funny thing now when I was hooking up the Melco I tried the WW from N1ZH to QX 5 and it failed to connect" in other words the QX 5 failed to show up on the network and as soon has I reinserted the QA Diamond the QX 5 showed up so that the way I have left it.

 

The next couple of weeks burn in on the N1ZH will be fun, I really enjoy now the burn in process of cables and equipment as in my younger days I had no patients for this but now its so fun listening to new equipment go thru its process and shine.

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No money for that upgrade for me lol. The AX5 is back at Ayre having the crossover installed for my, on order VANDERSTEEN Quatros in Audi Havana Black. Can't wait but I'll need 500 hours or so for all of that to break in before I make the digital changes. Just really can't wait. We come back from Nepal tomorrow and hopefully the speakers will be delivered in the next few weeks and then I need Johnny Rutan from Audio Connections to drive the two hours to come set them up.

 

 

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All situations are different. I will say that using a good pre will give the best results either way. Ayre has maximized all inputs. We each need to experiment. I'm building a fiber isolated network regardless for all the other equipment as well as having Tidal using Ethernet and not wireless

 

 

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Audio, why would you bypass the Melco and have the QX 5 hooked up directly to the server, sounds back words and have never heard of this before.

 

Could you please detail for me the results of this vs the QX 5 hooked up to the Melco.

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No I haven,t . Im on the look out for a few cheaper ones if you can call $6000-10,000 cheap. I would love to hear the AR Ref. 5Se which us supposed to sound fantastic with the Acc. A65 along with Mark Levinson 326S. Jeff Rowland has a few and of course the Arye VXR I think it is. We have an Arye Dealer here in Viet Nam so I have pretty much heard the Arye line which his where I bought the QX 5 for a very very good price.

 

Whats your thoughts for the QX 5 and Accuphase A 65?

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Heard it with it once with Wilson Sophia's mk2 which I don't love but it sounded good. I don't known if it was the A65 but it was in the 12k usd range I believe. I love the Ayre KXR/20 or even the less expensive KX5/20. To me the Ayre preamps are their best product as they match with tube or SS better than anything I've heard due to their design. JMHO ARC is also outstanding but a different sound.

 

 

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My previous system years ago before I got back into audio 6 months ago was the Accuphase 65 Cd I believe, AR Ref 1 with Papsworth Audio M200,s with Dunlavy SC 4 connected by all Stealth Audio cables back in the days when they where reasonably priced. So Im familiar with the AR sound.

 

I like the Arye Preamps as well but the KXR/20 also $17000.00 or 18.000.00. I don't believe they carry the KX5/20 here the last time I checked. The Arye XR series is beautiful.

 

I should at least try a preamp but the system sounds so damn good as it is.

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Heard it with it once with Wilson Sophia's mk2 which I don't love but it sounded good. I don't known if it was the A65 but it was in the 12k usd range I believe. I love the Ayre KXR/20 or even the less expensive KX5/20. To me the Ayre preamps are their best product as they match with tube or SS better than anything I've heard due to their design. JMHO ARC is also outstanding but a different sound.

 

 

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Funny that ARC has come up in this thread. One of the best systems I have ever heard used an ARC preamp, Ayre power amp then driving Vandersteen 5A speakers in a well treated room. The Ayre preamps are obviously superlative in their own right, but I really like the mix of the ARC + Ayre everytime I have heard it.

Roon ->allo Sparky-USBridge w/ SBooster 5V LPS-> Kii Control -> Kii Three

Roon->BMC UltraDAC->Mr Speakers Aeon Flow Open

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  • 1 month later...

I'm using the Room upsampling. It does sound better on the QX-5 in my opinion. The only problem is my server doesn't have the horsepower to to the job so I moved Roon Core to my iMac for now.

 

 

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SonicTransporter i9 > EtherRegen (powered by Uptone JS-2) > opticalRendu (JS-2) > Ayre QX-5 DAC > Ayre KX-R Twenty Preamp > Ayre MX-R Twenty mono amps > YG Kipod Signature Passive speakers.

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I tried Roon upsampling today and it seems to be a bigger improvement than I expected. I asked Alex at Ayre about upsampling and he doubted if it would be an improvement, but said he's never tried upsampling and would have to check it out when he gets a chance.

 

I'm using the Room upsampling. It does sound better on the QX-5 in my opinion. The only problem is my server doesn't have the horsepower to to the job so I moved Roon Core to my iMac for now.

 

 

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I tried Roon upsampling today and it seems to be a bigger improvement than I expected. I asked Alex at Ayre about upsampling and he doubted if it would be an improvement, but said he's never tried upsampling and would have to check it out when he gets a chance.

 

HQ Player is supposed to be an even bigger improvement. I was trying to avoid complexity, but I think I should give it a try soon. It's too bad the QX-5 can't handle the higher DSD sample rates to really put HQ Player to the test. Hopefully Ayre will upgrade down the road. In the mean time I'm using ROON to upsample pcm to 192 and leaving my dsf files alone.

 

 

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SonicTransporter i9 > EtherRegen (powered by Uptone JS-2) > opticalRendu (JS-2) > Ayre QX-5 DAC > Ayre KX-R Twenty Preamp > Ayre MX-R Twenty mono amps > YG Kipod Signature Passive speakers.

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I'm using my IMac as my core but wonder how much improvement there would be with a sever like the Sonic Transporter i7. Did you feel you lost much in sound quality when you switched back to your IMac?

 

Also I'm streaming Tidal at 176.4. I heard that it would sound better than 192 since 176.4 is a multiple of 44.1 hz.

 

HQ Player is supposed to be an even bigger improvement. I was trying to avoid complexity, but I think I should give it a try soon. It's too bad the QX-5 can't handle the higher DSD sample rates to really put HQ Player to the test. Hopefully Ayre will upgrade down the road. In the mean time I'm using ROON to upsample pcm to 192 and leaving my dsf files alone.

 

 

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I'm using my IMac as my core but wonder how much improvement there would be with a sever like the Sonic Transporter i7. Did you feel you lost much in sound quality when you switched back to your IMac?

 

Also I'm streaming Tidal at 176.4. I heard that it would sound better than 192 since 176.4 is a multiple of 44.1 hz.

 

I didn't feel I lost much at all, which surprised me. Perhaps the upsampling more than offset going away from a server. I should try comparing Roon Server on the Small Green server with no upsampling to Roon on the iMac with no upsampling. It would help me decide whether or not to get Andrew to make me an i7 box to replace my Audiophile Jukebox.

 

 

Sent from my iPad using Computer Audiophile

SonicTransporter i9 > EtherRegen (powered by Uptone JS-2) > opticalRendu (JS-2) > Ayre QX-5 DAC > Ayre KX-R Twenty Preamp > Ayre MX-R Twenty mono amps > YG Kipod Signature Passive speakers.

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