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Apple iTunes server system integration?


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Hello CA group. I've been enjoying reading the reviews and forums over the past week and this is my first post.

 

I'm looking for advice on how best to approach integrating an Apple based iTunes music server into my multi-purpose 2-channel music and HT room. I'm about 3 weeks into the transition from MS PC world to Apple world and not quite sure how to integrate what I have in mind.

 

In general, my goal is to be able to play back hi-res (via Amarra, Channel D or similar) audio files using my mac mini and use my HT TV monitor as the iTunes gui, possibly using an Apple TV if needed. Controlling iTunes could be by my iTouch, iPhone or eventually iPad.

 

One logistics issue is my mac mini currently resides in my home office where the internet service modem and wifi router is, about 50' from the HT/Audio listening room. I do have 2 ethernet cables currently connecting the two rooms (one for my Sony PS3 and the other my former Modwright Transporter.) I have an Apple TV available (not yet hooked up) that I had intended to use as a family/user friendly interface to the TV monitor. I've used wifi with the Transporter and experienced drop outs at this distance so the hard wire is in place.

 

My audio files are currently on an outboard Seagate 1TB usb hard drive next to the mac mini. The mac mini is a 2009 Intel core 2 duo with an 80GB SSD & 4GB RAM. Eventually I will get to a formal NAS set up once I sort out this system architecture.

 

I've read that the AppleTV will want to sync with the main iTunes library and replicate its files. I've read there is a software hack to work around this and just have it reference the same Seagate 1TB USB drive library, or similar work arounds.

 

My concern was recently learning that the Apple TV will only pass Redbook resolution files. Would the Amarra or Pure Music software eliminate this Redbook bottleneck as well? The Apple TV does have USB and Toslink ports which I imagine I can just connect to my DAC if there is no sacrifice to sound quality. If I was to use the Apple TV, should I be concerned with additional Video/RFI interference to audio signals?

 

What is the most efficient way to do this and maintain & play back the purest audiophile music files?

 

Another twist is I would like to keep an iTunes functioning at my home office computer location at the same time iTunes is being used in the music/HT room. This makes me wonder if it may be necessary to possibly add a dedicated music only mac mini as a head unit in the HT equipment area? Or set up the mac mini as a server? Any recommendations would be greatly appreciated.

 

Thanks

Kenreau

 

 

 

 

Synology NAS> Aurender W20> AQ Wel AES/XLR> Devialet 200> AQ Castle Rock Bi-Wire> Vandersteen 5As.

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To get high resolution audio from your Mac computer, you'll need to have the MacMini situated close to the main audio/visual kit. You'll then need to add a USB or FireWire interface such as the M2Tech HiFace (£100) to make the best use of high res. files.

 

If you are wanting to run iTunes with the same music at two locations, then ideally you'll need a NAS to store all the files on.

 

Hope this has helped a little...

 

Eloise

 

Eloise

---

...in my opinion / experience...

While I agree "Everything may matter" working out what actually affects the sound is a trickier thing.

And I agree "Trust your ears" but equally don't allow them to fool you - trust them with a bit of skepticism.

keep your mind open... But mind your brain doesn't fall out.

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Thanks Eloise, that helps some. I understand the USB to SPDIF interface issues, but that is a secondary concern at this point.

 

I guess my main question boils down to, can I make use of the Apple TV (fed from my mac mini as a music server) for my iTunes interface on my HT TV monitor and still get the highest quality audio files out of it (via software work around, or)? Or, is the best route to just simply add another 2nd mac mini as a dedicated head unit and feed the video to a TV input?

 

Thx

Kenreau

 

Synology NAS> Aurender W20> AQ Wel AES/XLR> Devialet 200> AQ Castle Rock Bi-Wire> Vandersteen 5As.

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The simple answer is no, there is no way to get greater than CD quality audio out of the Apple TV.

 

Eloise

 

Eloise

---

...in my opinion / experience...

While I agree "Everything may matter" working out what actually affects the sound is a trickier thing.

And I agree "Trust your ears" but equally don't allow them to fool you - trust them with a bit of skepticism.

keep your mind open... But mind your brain doesn't fall out.

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