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About dpaws

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  1. Wow! The NAD M51 has been given the A+ rating in the latest Stereophile Recommended Components list 2013 (to see the rest there's a free app/download from the iTunes store for those who linger on the dark side...)
  2. You're welcome - Well the M51 certainly gives you added versatility against the M2 which is very much a committed approach - the recent trend of new active speakers (welcome back!!) should certainly give you plenty of performance and pricing options as and when you're ready to move beyond the Denson. Interesting that we both enjoy the NAD Masters sound with a hint of warmth - but I'm grateful that we have the control to fine tune that sound rather than having a warm sounding source like the Meridian gear... once that detail and resolution is lost you can never get it back! The M51 also has the HDMI, so if you connected an Apple TV3 via HDMI you'd be able to airplay/stream Spotify and the like, it's certainly a useful piece of kit to have around. There are a few guys on the headphone forums who swear by the M51 with a dedicated headphone amplifier so I can never see the M51 becoming redundant.
  3. If you need assistance with a good price just PM... I can pass you onto the dealer that sorted mine out for me... ...but unless you're desperate I'd wait until the next firmware revision which will sort out some digital clicks between tracks and also the network sharing facility of the USB storage device attached to the rear panel (that's pretending to be a NAD M52)
  4. There's some relevant forum chit-chat here: Sonos vs. Bluesound - Sonos Forums intermixed with the usual blah blah...
  5. Mike - You've probably found this already? "Bluesound does not support UPnP at this time but Bluesound is able to connect to Windows, Mac, Linux and most NAS systems using conventional file sharing methods. Please see the Troubleshooting section of our FAQs (or Online Owner’s Manual)." from Bluesound - HiFi for a wireless generation ...which most probably means you can copy / paste files to a network shared hard drive but you can't stream... at the moment... Some prices here Bluesound - Welkom bij Wifimedia. Maak kennis met de toekomst! It's NOT cheap gear by any means, but I expect the playback quality will be excellent given the technology behind it and it offers 24/192 file compatibility which Sonos must be hating... Streaming 24/192 without glitches may be a different issue though, I'd certainly revert to Powerline adaptors - Meridian Audio aren't daft, they've limited their streaming to 24/96 for good reason...
  6. And there lies the point - I understand USB drives, and no-on whinges when I use one as it doesn't take up "their" bandwidth.. I tried altering the QoS settings but then no-one was happy!!! USB works well for me as for casual listening I revert to Spotify. There seems little point of playing a 24/192 HD download in the bedroom whilst pottering around the house when a scaled down 320kbps version via Spotify sounds just fine from a distance (and, for an mp3, surprisingly good close up!) My Spotify Premium account has also meant that I've archived about 80% of my music collection - all the compilations and life's journey discs - leaving only the music that takes me off to a different place... plus anything new that I discover on Spotify that seems to deserve a more serious listen.
  7. The designs certainly start from the same place, but with the limited real estate available for the extra (darker) front panel extension due to the shallow component depth I'm sure they'd have been faced with a tough decision-I'd love to have been a fly on the wall at that meeting - tough call!!! Certainly the often photographed combo of M50/M52/M2 doesn't offend me at all, it has a symmetry which appeals to my autistic traits!!!
  8. Connectivity options for streaming or local drive may be dictated by personal circumstance, as they were for me. With two teenagers in the house who both love to Skype their mates or run themselves ragged with Minecraft (haven't a clue, overheard it somewhere) then the demands on the network became too high to avoid the dropouts - which drive me nuts! - hence my new love and respect for the humble USB drive! Spotify and streaming works very well (lower res 320) but for the serious sessions and HD source material I revert to the drive. I guess the Bryston owners must all be in the same age range too!
  9. It does, and the M2 is even better I'm afraid! Lets face it, if it said Levinson on the front they'd have sold out of all production but for my generation NAD was the first serious kit you ever bought and then eventually moved on to more exotic brands. There does seem some good momentum behind NAD at the moment, both with their Masters series and also with the rest of the range, including the airplaying VISO etc. As much as I want to own Levinson or have a pair of glowing 845's to keep me snug on an evening, I can justify neither in terms of audio performance - the classic head/heart dilemma. The only concession I've made is a switch from silver to copper loudspeaker cables, just to "add" a touch of warmth (or loss of detail I suppose) because the M2 is so neutral/honest/accurate. With silver I could never quite drift off to the music, whilst the copper brings a hint of Merlot to the presentation, if that makes sense... There's no reason for the same logic not to apply for interconnects on the M51, the Audioquest Anacondas in XLR spring to mind from a year or two back as being a perfect match on paper, wonderful weight and prat, full of energy like a giddy spaniel puppy - again, it would depend on what item was next in the chain...
  10. No, you're right - they do look a little strange - some lines sort of tie in, but I think the designer went a little far!! Maybe it's an "arty" thing, I never did get arty things or arty types lol.
  11. Hi Mike - Not that I know of... I'm sure that it can't read from and take, if that makes sense, but maybe it can receive from a device pushing music in its direction, and in this respect the Bluesound range of products would be the place to look Bluesound - HiFi for a wireless generation - the vault in particular. As far as I'm aware there's no NAD server software that sits on a PC/Mac and pushes in the way that LMS did for Squeezebox. As yet... that is, the M50 would appear to be the flagship for a new direction for NAD who themselves have suggested that there's a roadmap for development. I just wish they'd start up a forum so thoughts and ideas could gather momentum. The Customer Service people are good, but there's nothing like having a discussion Thinking back to Squeezebox days, wouldn't the NAS need to hold software that pushes? Ahhh maybe you're thinking about pushing from a DLNA server on the NAS... Hmmm (My apologies for my non techie way of thinking about networks, but for me clients are people who pay me money!)
  12. I'm also curious about the comparison against the B&O range - I have the A7 which I have found to be truly excellent, again with comments and compliments coming from non-hi-fi guests. Since taking the plunge for an Apple router (OK, the Timecapsule) I have found the airplay system to be fantastic, rock steady and reliable for both for audio alone and also for AV via the collection of Apple TV3's that seem to have bred like Mogwai in a rain storm... One advantage with airplay is that my portable device only has to power up one extra function (wi-fi) as opposed to the battery draining wi-fi and bluetooth combo.
  13. Well, strictly speaking my DIY hi-fi server wasn't a CAPS, but it was built along the same guidelines with some slightly different components, the passive cooling, SOTM USB3 card and SSD drives all featured. I tried both Linux (Vortexbox/LMS) and Win8 trial edition, both with JPlay but never A/B'd the two pieces of gear on the rack at the same time in a serious manner. I don't recall anything that made me sit up and take notice, in my system it didn't seem to make any difference. I use both the Stereophile and Chesky Audiophile test disks whenever I change a component but I don't recall any lifting of veils or any other sonic revelations... It's not a low quality system either, the M2 is known for being highly resolving and detailed. I'm sure if the two were A/B'd there would be some slight differences, but nothing that springs to mind in isolation. Be aware though, my system is quite a different animal to a normal DAC, it may just be that my system is fairly tolerant to any jitter on a digital signal input. Sorry I can't be more helpful, but I can only suggest that your findings from comparing the two will most certainly depend on the next item along the audio chain and how well the preferred digital input option has been implemented. From a build perspective the M50 is excellent, a Linux based custom built motherboard without any DC-DC converters and no superfluous operating system baggage to work around... It does use a SMPS though, but I'm sure NAD have thought about that and used an ultra low noise version (Linn/Chord do the same) there's nothing that leads me to suspect that the M50 has been built down to a price in that respect. The rack components are all fed power from a PS Audio PPP re-generator, it is also possible that this component helped to level the playing field, but that would only be speculation. Not so much for the power being fed to the device, but from the isolation between components from the inevitable crud being fed back down the power cable. In this respect I'd expect the NAD M50 to be considerably cleaner than any PC build - unfortunately I no longer own a 'scope so I can't illustrate this. IMHO one of the reasons for people preferring to use laptops on battery power is not because the battery itself is superior (you still have onboard dc-dc conversion and a higher supply impedance) but because there's no cable for the crud (noise) to travel down and affect other components on the rack...
  14. I'm sure this link is very familiar to all, but just in case The Well-Tempered Computer I do sort of understand what Andy is eluding to, in that SPDIF has its technical limitations and other solutions such as i2s should be superior, depending of course on the specific implementation by the designer. However, as the members have rightly suggested, theory and practice are very different things indeed, and sometimes you need to be careful what you wish for. As firedog mentioned, there are many dacs that sound better via SPDIF than via USB, even though the theory suggests otherwise. The only way you can tell is by listening, which, to complicate matters further, is a subjective process. Ignore all of the blah blah and listen, that's the only way you'll understand whether or not the designer got it right or not - and please, never assume that they have! The Rendu is certainly an interesting project, and a rare opportunity to interact with the designer to produce a bespoke product that matches perfectly with the next item in your audio chain. That is almost priceless... However, I won't be buying one for a couple of reasons 1) I'm paranoid about noise/crud carried over ethernet cables 2) The Rendu won't aesthetically match my amplifier. (pathetic maybe but honest at least!) On theoretical paranoia - I followed cable construction theory for months and then, faced with so many diverse opinions and pages upon pages of technical and pseudo technical explanations, decided it was far easier to select by colour. SWMBO chose and all of my cables are now purple - my system has never sounded better!!! Oh, and of course my hi-fi paranoia has since moved to a different area of theoretical debate....
  15. I've just rediscovered a great quote from fellow CA member Beetlemania "As I've written before, computer audio is a really bad idea. It combines audiophile nervosa with computer geek compulsiveness" Certainly was 100% true in my case I'm afraid....
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