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ethelthefrog

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About ethelthefrog

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  1. OK I think my patience has finally run out. Apple’s new Music app in Catalina has eliminated it’s most useful management feature, the Column Browser. Clearly Apple feels only casual pop listeners matter and that there’s no more room for collectors who’ve built large libraries on their software for almost 20 years. I’m looking for your solutions for managing my library. In iTunes, the most powerful tools were: Column Browser for easy navigation of a large library Grouping - which was useful for sub-genres Star Ratings - for separating wheat from chaff on a useful scale Smart Playlists - to collect groups of songs in a large library As great as it is as a player, Roon is not yet ready to be a serious management platform. it just can’t ‘slice and dice’ a large library in a useful way. I realize many people are moving to NUCs and Nucleus’ and the like, but I still need to be able to manage my library in a fast and flexible way. None of the streaming services offers a robust music management platform. How do you manage your library to gain control of a large library?
  2. I'm looking to connect my headless Mac mini to my DAC/Amp and control iTunes using the iOS Remote app. But I'm curious whether I am better to run USB straight to the DAC or use Shairport through the microRendu. Shairport can only handle downsampled files but has the benefit for running through the microRendu. On the other hand a direct connection lets me feed the DAC a full-res file. Any thoughts? BTW, I understand there are likely superior options than playing directly from iTunes (like ROON) - but I've found the convenience of combining my existing library with new music sourced through Apple Music gives me the convenience I need.
  3. Thanks to everyone for your replies. PeterG I suppose that's where I've landed. It does come with some functional sacrifices though. No Roon metadata and weak iOS control interface not to mention the SQ tradeoff. For the others, I suppose I should be more specific. I too have been using Roon since it launched but all my personal library has been curated in iTunes since it originated. I have a very large library, carefully tagged rated and organized into playlists (and smart playlists). It's great that Roon handles all the music and brings in my playlists, but it doesn't bring in new music I add from Apple Music or let me work with my song ratings. I also subscribe to Tidal. But again, when I add that music, Roon cannot add it to my imported iTunes playlists. I just find that while there are great software options for storing and playing music, including JRiver, Roon and even iTunes, the only option that truly lets me merge my library with my streaming is iTunes. So until that gets rectified by an existing or new player, it seems the only option is to do as PeterG says. I now run my Mac mini through the microRendu into my irDAC and A38 amp. Sounds good, just not as good as the more audiophile solutions. Again, thanks to all for your responses.
  4. My understanding is that A+ doesn't incorporate streaming services - so no integration with library.
  5. II digitized my music library many years ago and have invested a ton of time and cash to this hobby. But all these years later I find myself at wits' end to find a music library solution that fulfills the promise of digital music. There doesn't seem to be a viable option that lets me: easily store, add and manage music files (including rating songs, editing metadata and creating playlists) integrate my library with a streaming service so that as I add new streaming music it can be integrated with existing library (ratings, metadata, playlists) easily playback my integrated library. I've used Roon for a couple of years - but the metadata/ratings/playlist library management capability is just not there to integrate my library with Tidal. Right now I'm back to where I was several years ago, using iTunes/Apple Music on a Mac mini as the source, managing (integrating) the library remotely from a MacBook Pro and feeding it to a mid-fi system that includes an Arcam A38 integrated, irDAC, Sonore microRendu and KEF LS50 standmounts. This option has forced a compromise in both sound quality and playback (the iOS Remote app is just terrible). So much here on CA is focused on gear and SQ, but I've never read much about library management. Playing an album at a time is fine, but shouldn't we be able to take advantage of database capabilities to easily rate, sort and group music from two sources? I'd be very curious to hear what others are doing...
  6. I digitized my music library many years ago and have invested a ton of time and cash to this hobby. But all these years later I find myself at wits' end to find a music library solution that fulfills the promise of digital music. There doesn't seem to be a viable option that lets me: easily store, add and manage music files (including rating songs, editing metadata and creating playlists) integrate my library with a streaming service so that as I add new streaming music it can be integrated with existing library (ratings, metadata, playlists) easily playback my integrated library. I've used Roon for a couple of years - but the metadata/ratings/playlist library management capability is just not there to integrate my library with Tidal. Right now I'm back to where I was several years ago, using iTunes/Apple Music on a Mac mini as the source, managing (integrating) the library remotely from a MacBook Pro and feeding it to a mid-fi system that includes an Arcam A38 integrated, irDAC, Sonore microRendu and KEF LS50 standmounts. This option has forced a compromise in both sound quality and playback (the iOS Remote app is just terrible). So much here on CA is focused on gear and SQ, but I've never read much about library management. Playing an album at a time is fine, but shouldn't we be able to take advantage of database capabilities to easily rate, sort and group music from two sources? I'd be very curious to hear what others are doing...
  7. I am finding my system for managing and playing music too complicated. I have my library on an external drive connected to a Mac mini so that I can manage the music using iTunes - playlists, ratings etc. But I play the music on Roon. The Mac is connected to a microRendu then to an Arcam iRDAC/A38 Amp and out to KEF LS50s. It seems to me that thus far Roon is not the best place to be doing the management. I’d like a solution like a NAS or Rock or something else that connects directly to my DAC/Amp but still lets me work with my files easily (like iTunes). Any ideas?
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