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Newb question: how to connect stored music to DAC?


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I have been out of the audiophile scene for a long time.  My decade-old system consists of a Rega Planet, Nautilus 802s and a 300 watt Llano Trinity amp (tube/solid state hybrid).  About a year ago I thought I would get back into listening to music and got a Marantz HD-DAC1, which also doubles as my pre-amp.  I had hopes of burning all of my old CDs onto a HDD and using something like JRiver to organize and play the songs.  Somewhere along the way I got sidetracked and never got around to doing this.

 

I need a convenient way to get stored music to the Marantz DAC, and I would rather not have to keep a conventional computer (desktop or laptop) in the media room where the DAC is.  (There is a LAN connection in the media room.)

 

Is there a decent device that can store and organize my music while providing a user interface that is easy to navigate?  (I am envisioning something like a cellphone display connected to a portable HDD.)

 

Alternatively, given that there is a LAN connection in the media room, is there a device that can provide a bridge between a media server located in a another room and the Marantz DAC and that has a display that allows me to select music?

 

Thanks so much.

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Your idea of a HD with Display is cool...do not know of one though.  Used to be the Olive system but not sure that ever worked.

 

You do not give a budget and how much effort you want to do to get into it but you have options from <$100 (Pi server but will be some DYI) to Network servers that cost $10s of thousands and everything in between.  Most, if not all, of the high dollar solutions are plug-in-play pretty much...load your music and point the server to the storage and play.

 

Personally I use a NAS running Logitech Media Server and feed my Squeezebox Touch (SBT) - SBT is no longer made but the server software is supported by an awesome community.  I can also run DLNA/UPNP servers to feed endpoints on my phone and bluetooth the music to powered speakers.

 

The options are endless and depend on how much you want to put into it.  Start with the Music Server sub-forum for options and recent Homepage reviews of Servers based on Pi and the rarified Taiko system and others in between.

QNAP TS453Pro w/QLMS->Netgear Switch->Netgear R7800 Router->Ethernet (50 ft)->Netgear switch->SBT->iFi xDSD->Linn Majik-IL (preamp)->Linn 2250->Linn Keilidh; Control Points: Squeeze Commander (DroidX) & iPeng (iPad Air); Also: Rega P3-24 w/ DV 10x5; OPPO 103; PC Playback: Foobar2000 & JRiver; Portable: Sony NWZ_ZX1 & ZX2 w/ PHA-3; SMSL IQ, Fiio Q5, iFi Nano iDSD BL; Garage: Edifier S1000DB Active Speakers  Wish List: New DAC,  SBT replacement; Dream system: Linn EXACT or ATC Active or Big Tubes (KR or Nagra or Shindo or ...)

 

My goal is to use appliances and take home PC out of the chain...

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Thanks for the input.  I decided to go with a JRiver Id, which is a NUC, and use it as a server and renderer (hooking it up directly to the DAC).  I can use Jremote to control it from my phone

 

i was also thinking of using an iPod touch or another portable music player but there is a question about whether the Marantz HD-DAC1 can play lossless files from these sources. 

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17 hours ago, Nautilus123 said:

Thanks for the input.  I decided to go with a JRiver Id, which is a NUC, and use it as a server and renderer (hooking it up directly to the DAC).  I can use Jremote to control it from my phone

 

i was also thinking of using an iPod touch or another portable music player but there is a question about whether the Marantz HD-DAC1 can play lossless files from these sources. 

Well now you have to do a review of the Id...I do not think anyone else has.  Unless a direct wire connection from the Touch to the Marantz will do hi-res, you may be SOL.  I doubt the Touch can do hi-res BT and Airplay does not even if Marantz does AP.  HEOS?? Is there a Touch app for HEOS?  I think Marantz does HEOS.  

 

If the Marantz can do hi-res BT (i forget the nomenclature) you can see if the Sony or Fiio or others players will broadcast.  

 

I just checked...iPod USB input so maybe hi-res.

QNAP TS453Pro w/QLMS->Netgear Switch->Netgear R7800 Router->Ethernet (50 ft)->Netgear switch->SBT->iFi xDSD->Linn Majik-IL (preamp)->Linn 2250->Linn Keilidh; Control Points: Squeeze Commander (DroidX) & iPeng (iPad Air); Also: Rega P3-24 w/ DV 10x5; OPPO 103; PC Playback: Foobar2000 & JRiver; Portable: Sony NWZ_ZX1 & ZX2 w/ PHA-3; SMSL IQ, Fiio Q5, iFi Nano iDSD BL; Garage: Edifier S1000DB Active Speakers  Wish List: New DAC,  SBT replacement; Dream system: Linn EXACT or ATC Active or Big Tubes (KR or Nagra or Shindo or ...)

 

My goal is to use appliances and take home PC out of the chain...

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28 minutes ago, jcbenten said:

Well now you have to do a review of the Id...I do not think anyone else has.  Unless a direct wire connection from the Touch to the Marantz will do hi-res, you may be SOL.  I doubt the Touch can do hi-res BT and Airplay does not even if Marantz does AP.  HEOS?? Is there a Touch app for HEOS?  I think Marantz does HEOS.  

 

If the Marantz can do hi-res BT (i forget the nomenclature) you can see if the Sony or Fiio or others players will broadcast.  

 

I just checked...iPod USB input so maybe hi-res.

I am a little cautious on the JRiver Id.  You can barely find anything about it online.  In theory, it should work perfectly for my needs.  It's literally just a small computer with pre-loaded JRiver software.

 

The new ipod is about the same price as a 2 TB Id, and supposedly JRiver sounds better than than Apple's software (hence the need for Bitperfect).  Of course, the ipod has the advantage of being pretty much idiot proof--it literally plug and play.

 

I was reading a review of the Marantz where the reviewer stated that when using a USB stick, the Marantz would not play lossless files since it needs PCM data or something like that.  What I am not sure about though is whether an iPod supplies PCM data, or would instead literally be no different than sticking a USB stick into the Marantz.

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21 minutes ago, Nautilus123 said:

...

 

I was reading a review of the Marantz where the reviewer stated that when using a USB stick, the Marantz would not play lossless files since it needs PCM data or something like that.  What I am not sure about though is whether an iPod supplies PCM data, or would instead literally be no different than sticking a USB stick into the Marantz.

My understanding is that one has PCM or DSD...PCM lossless includes WAV AIFF and FLAC...wondering if the reviewer confused file format with PCM vs DSD?  Should be easy to check with a thumbdrive as you already have the Marantz.  Might want to check your manual also.

QNAP TS453Pro w/QLMS->Netgear Switch->Netgear R7800 Router->Ethernet (50 ft)->Netgear switch->SBT->iFi xDSD->Linn Majik-IL (preamp)->Linn 2250->Linn Keilidh; Control Points: Squeeze Commander (DroidX) & iPeng (iPad Air); Also: Rega P3-24 w/ DV 10x5; OPPO 103; PC Playback: Foobar2000 & JRiver; Portable: Sony NWZ_ZX1 & ZX2 w/ PHA-3; SMSL IQ, Fiio Q5, iFi Nano iDSD BL; Garage: Edifier S1000DB Active Speakers  Wish List: New DAC,  SBT replacement; Dream system: Linn EXACT or ATC Active or Big Tubes (KR or Nagra or Shindo or ...)

 

My goal is to use appliances and take home PC out of the chain...

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