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PAR

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  1. Before I used the Network Bridge ( with a Melco N1ZH/2 as NAS) I was using a dedicated music PC running JRiver MC v.25 for local file replay ( from external HDD storage)and Qobuz' native desktop app. The PC's USB output was conditioned by a number of ifi devices and great attention had been made to cables. The resulting sound was IMO very good indeed for ripped or streamed programme material compared with e.g. the original CDs played via my dCS Paganini transport. The sound was identical or perhaps sometimes slightly better. The Melco/dCS Network Bridge combination was demonstrated in my home allowing direct comparison with my PC setup. I had allowed an hour for the dealer to convince me of the superiority of the Melco/dCS. In fact it took around 4 seconds for me to realise that the Melco/dCS provided a superior soundworld. An opinion that the past couple of months' hands on experience has done nothing to alter. Yes, the Network Bridge/ Mosaic Control does provide access to Tidal and Qobuz. In regard to the latter it provides all of the search and replay characteristics but not the excellent text aspects of the native Qobuz GUI such as the ability to access the CD booklets or to read original Qobuz essays on the music, performers, label or musical style etc. This is, I understand, down to Qobuz' decision on what they supply to partners rather than the result of any omission on dCS' part. I therefore still use a PC from time to time to access these aspects. Insofar as Tidal is concerned the Network Bridge in combination with a dCS DAC also provides full decoding of their MQA repertoire.
  2. No, I didn't say that. I said that my PC based system sounded different as did an Innuos Zenith MK II, to my Melco ( as NAS) / dCS Network Bridge source. I have not used HQ player or a dedicated ethernet card. I was using JRiver + various ifi USB conditioning devices. The HQ player etc. that you raise is therefore another set of variables and one that I have no experience of. I would mention, though, that the Melco has an advantage when used as an NAS in that it plugs directly into the Network Bridge and therefore avoids a network switch. Have a look at Melco's website if you need further detail. I guess that as the Melco/dCS is now my source and not the Zenith MK.II or the PC/JRiver setup you could deduce that I consider the Melco/dCS superior to either. However the Zenith MKII is not the Innuos Statement which may or may not be better ( see earlier postings in this thread to which my initial posting referred). As I indicated earlier if one is going to spend the large sum needed for the Innuos Statement ,or other high end component, then you had better hear it first at home on loan or at a well conducted dealer demonstration. Ultimately it is your opinion that counts, not mine. Incidentally, for example, I have just noted that one of the few UK dealers ( The Audiobarn) who has a Statement offers it on a 14 day loan to genuine prospective purchasers. That is the kind of dealer relationship that you need to seek. I would say the same if you are looking at a Melco ( or other)/Network Bridge combination. In my case the dealer brought the pair to my home so I could directly compare them to what I had. There is a financial limit to components that I am prepared to just take a punt on and 8-10K gbp certainly exceeds that limit 😉.
  3. Any current range of dCS products receives firmware updates from time to time . dCS do not use proprietary DAC chips etc. and all of the firmware, coded by dCS, is held on FPGAs . However the updates are not "regular" but only as appropriate. dCS have long learned not to issue updates until they are fully developed. In this particular case relating to internet radio stations it is not so much the Network Bridge itself that is updated but its accompanying control application , Mosaic Control ( though part of Mosaic Control is installed in the Network Bridge or other dCS streamer e.g. Vivaldi Upsampler or Rossini DAC). This has its own update programme and the revision to v.1.0.2 is anticipated shortly ( v.1.0.1 was issued on 6th June). With regard to your immediate need you could try: https://www.ripcaster.co.uk/node/111
  4. I'll just add for clarification that the volume change does not happen within the app itself. The app is only a control interface and is telling the Melco N1 to reduce/increase the signal it sends to your Berkeley device.
  5. The volume control on the Melco app is there so that users may adjust volume for the system without the need to get up from their listening position. Not every system configuration has other volume controls available. Volume controls on an app work by discarding bits. So in order to avoid audible loss of resolution the app needs to have both adequate headroom in respect of the amplifier matching the sensitivity of the speakers and the bit depth needs to be adequate to cope with the losses without audible repercussions. So a volume control based upon 32 bit resolution is less likely to cause audible loss than a 16 bit one. I am finding this hard to explain so, briefly, the best solution is to set the app volume to max ( i.e. 0dBfs) which means that there is no attenuation by the app and to use the pre-amp to control volume. If the pre-amp has no remote then you lose the advantage of controlling volume from your listening position but gain full resolution of the source. NB: That is theory , in reality I cannot hear any loss of resolution in my system as the volume is lowered and, therefore, bit depth is reduced via an app or other digital volume control as the sound becomes too quiet to notice such factors😉.
  6. The station database is supplied by a provider. It is not perfect ( what on Earth is?) but is mightily impressive and no doubt will improve further over time as clients like dCS ask for additions. As a Brit I am impressed that even stations catering to our native minority languages like Welsh and Gaelic are included.
  7. Ah, then you must be the guy with 11,000 albums on dCS Community . I have a fraction of that but I am sympathetic to your needs. There is, apparently, a way of amending MinimServer so that the albums are alphabetically indexed which could be helpful depending upon the search terms but I suspect that you , like me, enjoy browsing your collection to see what takes your fancy so indexing isn't really a complete solution.
  8. Great stuff. However are you using Mosaic Control? If so are you only playing local files or are you also using it to access a streaming service or for internet radio stations? I have to say that the access to internet radio from it is impressive with hundreds of stations available and, for some, the most popular associated podcast subscriptions are already installed. I have been knocked out with the sound quality I am hearing via Network Bridge from the current live broadcasts of this year's Proms season ( BBC Radio 3 320kbs/AAC without subsequent signal processing by the BBC in the tx chain i.e. effectively a direct feed from the mixing desk. Possibly only available in this format to the UK). They are subject, of course, to the live, on the fly, sound balance achieved by the BBC engineers. dCS are promising version 1.0.2 of Mosaic Controller in the near future so I am looking forward to what that will bring. NB: Looks like your system description may now need updating 😉
  9. Can you not get fibre to cabinet? I have this from Zen ( maybe one of if not the best of the ISPs over here) and I get a guaranteed 70Mb/s but it sometimes runs a bit faster ( I'm getting 76Mb/s as I write) . I rarely suffer drop outs/glitches. It might be worth checking your address with their online availability app. BTW the speed I get is fine for 4K TV which is about the most I need in practice. There are a couple of other audio enthusiasts that I know on another forum who live in Southampton ( for all I know you may be one of them using a different moniker !) and I could ask what they can get.
  10. I can't add anything to this thread in regard to ISPs and who is best etc. as I am not in the USA and this is all very USA centric. However, and returning to the opening remarks , what speed is required to use a streaming service? Just anecdotally, and I have pointed this out on another thread somewhere, last year I was staying with a friend who lives out in the fenlands on the edges of Norfolk, Cambridge and Lincolnshire in the East of England virtually next to The Wash. One major infrastructure issue over here is the poor internet connections available ( if at all) to people living out in the sticks. My friend gets a 7Mb only service. However I was able to use my phone (connected to his LAN via wifi) to stream Qobuz @ 24/96 successfully. Maybe I could have even played 24/192 but 24/96 is the limit for my portable AQ Dragonfly DAC. So, how slow does the connection need to be to fail to stream?
  11. Thanks. That throws further light but DGG's statement is still ambiguous. It just says remastered at 24/96 with no reference to the source. I guess no surprise there as so much of this hi-res business is dubious. Still at least it encourages me now to compare my rips of the CDs with a stream from Qobuz of the 24/96 files. If the latter sound better anyway then I guess the precise origin is of less importance and I may well go for them. Of course the original LPs are sublime 😉.
  12. A slight deviation from the main theme of the thread right now: do you have any idea of the provenance of this Karajan Beethoven set? The reason that I ask is the the original set was released , unsurprisingly, as 16/44.1 CDs. However a few years later it came out as a box set of SACDs. If I recall correctly this was not a remastering from the original tapes but just an upsample to DSD64 of the 16/44.1 release. Have you idea what Qobuz are selling here? If it is a bona fide hi-res remastering from the original analogue tapes then I would be interested in a purchase. However the odds are that as it is a UMG issue it will just be upsampled. Any evidence to say otherwise?
  13. That kind of makes sense to me if all of the sale prices are not available to all countries ( as I would suspect given that the record industry is run on a territorial basis ). When you go through the app you are logged into the USA service with all that entails. No doubt at some other point in time you may find a price or even entire repertoire that is not available from Qobuz UK, France, Germany etc.
  14. I agree . The Qobuz download shop and the streaming service seem not to run in tandem. I am, BTW, a UK subscriber. Qobuz emailed me last week to draw my attention to the sale. If I click on the links in the email I am taken directly to the store where the sale items are displayed. However even if I log on to the store I am only offered a standard "sale" price, no Sublime+ membership advantages as the login here seems not to recognise my membership .( NB: I don't count 17.40 gbp for a back catalogue Blue Note item as offered in the sale exactly as a bargain). If I then go to the desktop player and find the same item and check the "buy" button then I am offered a Sublime + discount ( it is now offered for 8.49gbp). The desktop player graphics make no mention of there being a sale on at all. So the way of using the "sale" option is to go to the shop, which is the only place that the sale items are displayed as such, then exit the shop , go to the desktop player, find the item again then maybe get a Sublime+ discount as this seems the only place that it is offered. However as items in the sale can also be offered without any further discount being offered to Sublime + members the whole thing is so confusing I just can't be bothered. This is because not all items attract additional discounts for Sublime + members anyway as the Sublime + discounts are negotiated individually with the record companies*. So one may just as well ignore the sale per se and just use the "buy" button in the desktop player as per usual . If the item is wanted by you then you may find it cheaper than expected for this month without having to be aware of existence of the sale at all. IMO it's a strange way to run a promotion. * which may be why you are not seeing the same deals in the USA as we do for the European services.
  15. I listed 3 JRiver controllers two of which run respectively only on Android or iOS tablets or phones. You cannot add fields to them ( you can't right click for a start).
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