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Streaming TIDAL through stereo recommendations


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18 hours ago, HC515 said:

I ended up buying a Peachtree Deco Sky 125  it fits what I was looking for and allowed me to cut the chords and get enough power to run just about any speaker I want in the future. Node 2i has a better OS but a tradeoff I was willing to accept. 

I viewed that on Amazon and found negative feedback. 

Pure Music 3.0.6 > Apple Music 1.0.1.37 / TIDAL desktop app > iMac (21.5", Late 2013) 3.1 GHz Intel Quad Core i7 - 8GB 1600 MHz DDR3 > macOS Catalina 10.15.1 > 250 Apple Flash Storage / SSD > AQ Dragon Tail 2.0 > AQ Jitterbug > Dragonfly Black 1.07 > Klipsch 2.1 Pro Media

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You know what they say about online reviews.  A dissatisfied customer makes 10x the noise that a satisfied customer does.  Most satisfied customers don't bother to make reviews.  If I recall Amazon only had about 10 reviews on this product but I did enough research and found other reviews that made me feel comfortable buying it.  Getting 120W per channel with Wifi made this an attractive purchase for me plus the fact that this item was $1100 when it first came out, it's still $900 at most online places, and Amazon has it for $740 plus I get 5% cash back with my Amazon Prime CC.  It's not the right amp for everyone but nothing is a one shoe fits all solution.  I'm happy and that's all that matters to me.

 

You just have to decide what is best for you and don't put too much thought into what what others say.  It's good to get other opinions but ultimately you have to be happy with what you buy.  And given the return flexibility that many merchants offer today you can always return something if you're not 100% satisfied.

 

When I bought the PT I was thinking there was a 50% chance I'd return it but I like it a lot now and the only thing that would make it perfect is support for Amazon HD but that is sort of out of PT's control since they use 3rd party apps.  For now I use Tidal but once Amazon HD is supported I'll make the switch.

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19 minutes ago, HC515 said:

You know what they say about online reviews.  A dissatisfied customer makes 10x the noise that a satisfied customer does.  Most satisfied customers don't bother to make reviews.  If I recall Amazon only had about 10 reviews on this product but I did enough research and found other reviews that made me feel comfortable buying it.  Getting 120W per channel with Wifi made this an attractive purchase for me plus the fact that this item was $1100 when it first came out, it's still $900 at most online places, and Amazon has it for $740 plus I get 5% cash back with my Amazon Prime CC.  It's not the right amp for everyone but nothing is a one shoe fits all solution.  I'm happy and that's all that matters to me.

 

You just have to decide what is best for you and don't put too much thought into what what others say.  It's good to get other opinions but ultimately you have to be happy with what you buy.  And given the return flexibility that many merchants offer today you can always return something if you're not 100% satisfied.

 

When I bought the PT I was thinking there was a 50% chance I'd return it but I like it a lot now and the only thing that would make it perfect is support for Amazon HD but that is sort of out of PT's control since they use 3rd party apps.  For now I use Tidal but once Amazon HD is supported I'll make the switch.

Thanks for your reply.  I've never tried anything from Peachtree but have always been interested.  

Pure Music 3.0.6 > Apple Music 1.0.1.37 / TIDAL desktop app > iMac (21.5", Late 2013) 3.1 GHz Intel Quad Core i7 - 8GB 1600 MHz DDR3 > macOS Catalina 10.15.1 > 250 Apple Flash Storage / SSD > AQ Dragon Tail 2.0 > AQ Jitterbug > Dragonfly Black 1.07 > Klipsch 2.1 Pro Media

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On 11/11/2019 at 2:06 PM, btlancaster24 said:

I was considering getting a Bluesound Node 2i.  But after reading up a bit.  It seems to be not all it's cracked up to be and quite possibly disappointing.  So, since I don't live near any stores to go and demo any other options - I'm hoping to get some feedback / recommendations for something that would be a step up from Bluesound Node 2i for streaming TIDAL through my vintage Denon amp. that won't lose any audio quality over wifi or bluetooth and have a good user interface that works well - as opposed to the problematic BlueOS.  Hoping to stay around the same price point of the Node 2i or like a said, "a step up" from Bluesound.  Also, hoping to buy from a vendor that has financing options.

 

Thanks - 

I was in your situation two years ago - it was difficult then and difficult now for people to wrap their heads around, "I want to purchase a streamer, but won't be using any kind of laptop/desktop computer to (mess up the sound) control it!"  

 

You are on a budget and there are a few nits that can be picked with both the Node 2i and the Peachtree decco125 SKY, and I'll list them.  However, at their price points one has to be realistic.  Or even, thrilled that there is any way at all to do any streaming in your living room, by simply adding just one box to your system.  (I don't think you mention what speakers you are using, not that it matters too much.)

Nits: 

   The Node doesn't sound too good when utilizing its analog outputs - but what can one expect?  If you "need" to spend $250 (Modi Multibit, just as an example) to $700 (Schiit Bifrost Multibit) to get "passable" sound, and the Node costs $549 in its entirety, it's not unreasonable to think the DAC Bluesound incorporates won't be up to some/many audiophile's standards.

   These are wireless units, and the wireless will never sound as good as a one utilizing a wired connection.  (I didn't check the Peachtree, but I know, if you have an Ethernet option in your living room, the Node does accept an RJ45 connection, which I'd recommend.)  But if all you can do is wireless, I'd not worry at all - set up the "box" and listen and be happy that:  If you can think of a any song you ever liked, for $9.95 or $19.95 per month you can most likely listen to it immediately.  If you were going to spend ten times your budget on a Streaming setup I'd suggest a wired setup would be more mandatory.  [I will say, I took my somewhat expensive setup to our local headphone meet last weekend and utilized the WiFi at our host's house, and I never gave it a thought.  I'd say wireless streaming is probably the least of your sound quality worries with your reasonably-priced setup.

   I'll be shocked if the amplifier used in the Peachtree unit isn't a Class D piece of (if you are into high-end audio) junk.  120 watts/channel, and the entire unit weighs 10 lbs?  But again, let's adjust our expectations to match the pricing:  They offer a Streamer, DAC, and amplifier (and phono pre-amp) for less than $900.  Certainly I can recommend better stuff - for $9,000 - it seems likely to me that what they are offering for the money might be just fine.

   You can use the pre-amp outputs of the Peachtree unit if you'd rather listen through your Denon amp; and both offer the option to add a better DAC at a later time. Find someone with a decent outboard DAC and have them over for pizza and try their unit; it would be very easy to see how large (or small) an improvement could be made. 

   The apps on these units might not be superior, but I would check to see if either, or both, have an app that will work with/on your tablet.  People with younger eyes (you) may find their phone works OK; I find that (with reading glasses 😊 ) I'm perfectly happy with using my iPad to control my Streamer and don't wish for anything better.  Here again, for less than $1000 you are doing a fairly amazing thing, you will have the ability to listen to a nearly unlimited smorgasbord of music in your living room by adding one box.  I'm sure that for ten times more money you could find a better Streamer with a better app (and a better DAC).  (Like the Cary DMS-550, which I happen to own - $4000 at a retailer near you...)

 

Conclusion:  There seems to be two options now for streaming (without incorporating a computer, which introduces its own noise-related problems even if you did have one in your living room), the under $1000 route that you are exploring, or the over $3000 (or $6000) option - with no options/products available in-between.

I think either unit mentioned above would allow you a lot of flexibility, and sound WAY better than playing an MP3 file on your living room system.  I'd lean toward the Bluesound just because streaming, and wireless streaming, is almost their main business - surely they have some clue on how to do it well.  If they didn't, they wouldn't still be around to sell us... anything.  AND, you don't need an amplifier anyway.

 

If you go with the Node 2i, report back in a few weeks.  It won't sound as good as your older and richer neighbor's $10K system, but I'll bet it is more than satisfactory for the small amount of money you will have had to invest in order to access TIDAL, and all its advantages.

 

 

 

 

Who would have thought Idiocracy would turn out to be a documentary!?

 

Mapleshade Samson V.5 equipment rack, 4" maple platforms and brass vibration isolation, DH Labs 12ga Silver Sonic Power Plus dedicated power line, IsoTek Sirius EVO3 Power Conditioner, EtherREGEN, CAT8 Supra Ethernet cables, Linn Genki CD player (transport), Cary DMS-550 streamer/DAC, Pass Labs HPA-1 amplifier, Mr. Speakers Ether2 headphones, various Omega-Micro analog and digital interconnects and power cords. 

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Just in case you haven’t noticed, the Decco Sky is an amplifier as well as a streamer — you might be paying for what you don’t need if you want to continue using your Denon. If you’re thinking of changing amps then the Sky is certainly a fine cost-effective option, as is the Bluesound Powernode 2i. I’m using it connected to a couple of JMR Lucias and frankly it’s awesome. If your wireless router is up to snuff, I doubt very much you’ll notice a difference between wireless and wired. And when the only cable you need to use is speaker cable the sound is amazingly clear.

 

The DAC in the Bluesound products sounds pretty amazing, better than a Dragonfly (which I have also owned.) I can’t testify to how good or bad the analogue outs on the Node 2i are, but the rest is the same circuitry as the Powernode. If you’re even remotely thinking about changing amps, give the Powernode some serious consideration. I also find the BluOS software great to use. It’s not Roon, but it’s better than most, and it’s free. Good luck in your search!

Mac Mini (+Tidal) -> WiFi -> Bluesound Powernode 2i (Audioquest NRG Z3) -> JM Reynaud Lucia (Tellurium Q Black v1)

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Thanks to both "DelsFan" & "trappy" for your input!

Pure Music 3.0.6 > Apple Music 1.0.1.37 / TIDAL desktop app > iMac (21.5", Late 2013) 3.1 GHz Intel Quad Core i7 - 8GB 1600 MHz DDR3 > macOS Catalina 10.15.1 > 250 Apple Flash Storage / SSD > AQ Dragon Tail 2.0 > AQ Jitterbug > Dragonfly Black 1.07 > Klipsch 2.1 Pro Media

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