Are you ready for an audiophile music server?

Stereophile's picture
Now that hi-rez files without DRM are starting to become available for download from several labels, are you ready for an audiophile music server?
Are you ready for an audiophile music server?
Already have one
32% (268 votes)
Bring 'em on
44% (366 votes)
Maybe
13% (106 votes)
Probably not
6% (49 votes)
Never
2% (18 votes)
Huh?
2% (19 votes)
Total votes: 826
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Comments
Paul Cowdery's picture

For all my digital music, it makes sense.

Peter Jacobsen, Shanghai's picture

Unless they get real cheap, I probably won't get one. Already we have the option on PC-based media players to make a music library with playlists, etc. I still love my CD's though. I like to look at the cover, read the liner notes, the recording date, learn about the musicians. I like to drop it in the player and listen from one end to the other and then to think of which disc to listen to next.

df's picture

I'd been using a Macintosh G4 Cube as a music server for years. Though I started with lowly MP3 files, then slightly better AAC, a few years ago I opted to only use lossless compression. My Cube has about given up the ghost, so my files have moved to a large external hard drive. I've got a lot of Video and Pod Casts in the mix as well. Output can be had through my computer with attached USB speakers or headphone (hardly hi fi though) or via an Apple TV to my Yamaha Receiver — and that includes DTS decoding, since I've got some of that in the mix as well. It's not yet the ideal set-up for me, so I've been watching as products develop, and my library grows and grows…

Martin Walker's picture

I need high quality!

willie's picture

Could you recommend a good music server? I'm thinking about the Benchmark USB DAC.

Record Player's picture

Assuming one isn't handicapped, is it honestly that hard to get out of the chair and change discs? Seems like a lot of fuss and bother to eliminate a minor to non-exisistant problem.

Robert's picture

Yet another product category to research. Sigh! At least this one is progressive and can be implemented in software using existing general purpose computing devices rather than having to purchase new hardware (except for interface conversion, ie, USB, firewire, wireless, S/PDIF ...)

yun's picture

notebook transit dac

yair harpaz's picture

have now the sonos system.very good, but not a true audiofile server

Jaan Warnhoff's picture

As long as it's not for compressed audio like MP3.

Cihangir Güzey's picture

If I will be able to download hi-rez audio files (at least 320kbps)at reasonable price (say a total album download will cost at most 30% the price of the CD), I would prefer it. Otherwise purchasing CD would be better. Original CD is manufactured by its original die pressing process and no way to burn the same identical quality with a CD recorder. Also booklet, box and front-back covers...

Steven Simon's picture

If its better than iTunes, Airport Express, and a external DAC, sure. Mac laptops now have 250GB HDs and there are soon to be 500GB HDs for laptops. Anyway this is a good setup and a stand alone music server would have to beat it on performance and price.

Bogdan's picture

I am very curious.

LuckyLuke's picture

To me, there too many unclear aspects of interfacing it to the rest of the analog&digital world. There may come a time when there will be only one standard interface.

Arvind Kohli's picture

Only if all digital formats can be accomodated.

Sebastian Pietraszek.'s picture

I'd always build my own because of greater flexibility and personal needs, and of course cost effectiveness.

Jorge's picture

MS's are the future of music, both high- and low-end. I can't wait for the second generation hi-fi products come to market.

Ronald Frostestad's picture

The Linn DS is very impressive.

Mark's picture

Need better products for burning vinyl and more help from stereophile, particularly on how best to playback hi rez burned vinyl

Neil's picture

Music servers are the way to effortlessly access your music throughout the house with any UI. Ideal for whole-home distributed audio.

T.G.'s picture

I have a question you can put to vote. Why are manufacturers so loathe to distribute their products online? Are they afraid of their product being commoditized? They could control that with strict pricing guidelines. Are they afraid it will hurt their brand? How exactly would that hurt them if they have reputable online retailers that uphold their standards for service and quality? My thinking is that Brick and mortar retailers (much like the RIAA) do not know how to compete online, as a result they threaten manufacturers and scare monger them into thinking that going online will destroy their reputation and brand. BS! A reputable internet retailer provides instant nationwide (perhaps even worldwide) distribution for a product. Their service is equal to that of any brick and mortar, and they (the good ones anyhow) allow you to audition equipment in your own home. What could be better than that? What really amazes me is that internet retail sales were up 20% in 2007 while brick and mortar retail sales fell 3%. If I were a manufacturer that would tell me all I need to know about how to distribute my products. There is a place for Brick and mortar retailers, I do not argue that. Things like floorstanding speakers cannot be distributed efficiently via the internet. But for a majority of audio products, the internet just makes more sense.

H.  Williams, Hollywood Hills's picture

Se habla Ingles?

John in d.c.'s picture

I was really angry the soundtrack for the film The Diving Bell and the Butterfly is only available as a download. I've got a vinyl record player and a CD player. We are constantly being asked to jump through format hoops. This one better be good. It was bad enough when the phased out perfectly fine vinyl. Now CDs, before we even get decent mass on HDCD or SACD formats. The muck is frustrating and a lot of the people who care most are going to throw up their hands and just stop changing. Or something like that.

Xanthia's picture

Honestly, who'd be bothered shuffling discs?

Dismord's picture

There's more than enough digital complexity that can, and does, go wrong with my existing computer network. Why would I want to add to the potential aggravation. Besides, I don't quite get this idea of pumping music into multiple rooms from a single source. The potential for huge domestic arguments around here would be frightening. Yeah, I know, we can restrict control to individuals who have the access code—forget it, that's yet another source of domestic arguments. I'll just keep things as simple as possible.

Blueman's picture

Provided that those record companies allow users to download their paid music many times, in case the harddisk failures.

kmed's picture

very interesting in deed could free up a lot of space for a collector

Ron F.'s picture

Save a lot of money: Build your own.

Yorgos Simeonidis's picture

I use my computer but a specialized solution based on audio files would be best.

Henry Chow's picture

The technology is new, wait for 12 months, it will mature.

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