Bowers & Wilkins 805 D3 loudspeaker Associated Equipment

Thu, 02/16/2017

COMMENTS
tonykaz's picture

This will fascinating to read.

I just had access to a pair of Pro-Ac Tabletts & a pair of old Magnapan MG2s. I discovered both are still superb and exciting.

How much driver improvement is a darn good question for some brave soul to tackle, I give you full marks for suggesting it. I'll buy a second year's print subscription if you can answer it using your typically engineering based methods. Who else "could" handle this conundrum?

By the way, I was stunned by you calling-out the 21bit DAC design as being obsolete. Once again, I applaud you!

Tony in Michigan

ps. I'm about to go European and embrace all music delivery systems by buying a Linn DS server. I might even invest in a LP12 ( for old time's sake ) which I'll probably display in a sealed, nitrogen filled glass case. I'm hunting for an Ittok and Rosewood Red Koetsu ( not, but maybe a cute red nosed Asak that doesn't have to work ).

mrkaic's picture

I keep reading about discontinuities in John Atkinson's (extremely good) articles. What is shown in Fig. 1 is not a discontinuity, the function appears to be continuous. Rather, the kink at 900 Hz could be a discontinuity in the 1st derivative of the impedance function wrt frequency. It is an important difference.

jmsent's picture

There certainly is a discontinuity in the impedance curve, which would normally not have such a "kink" unless there's a resonance somewhere in the system. Are you suggesting it's a measurement artifact? Having been involved in the driver industry for many years, (now retired) I'd lay odds that this kink is due to an edge reflection in the woofer, due to the use of a low loss rubber surround. It's a common occurrence that will often not be easily visible in a frequency response measurement. Given that JA didn't detect any mechanical resonances around that frequency, it's likely that it originates in the driver itself.

mrkaic's picture

Calling that kink at 900 Hz a discontinuity is not proper mathematical terminology. Loosely speaking, a discontinuity means that the curve is cut -- there is a "gap". This clearly is not the case here. But the slope (the 1st derivative) is not continuous -- has different values if you approach the kink point from the left and from the right.

hb72's picture

--> "inflection point"

John Atkinson's picture
mrkaic wrote:
Calling that kink at 900 Hz a discontinuity is not proper mathematical terminology. Loosely speaking, a discontinuity means that the curve is cut -- there is a "gap". This clearly is not the case here.

I think you are being misled by the relatively sparse data points in the impedance graph. If I had taken reading at, say 1Hz, intervals, then you would have seen a clearly defined discontinuity, equivalent to the Hilbert transform of a peak.

John Atkinson
Editor, Stereophile

mrkaic's picture

John:

1. First, many thanks for your splendid articles. I buy Stereophile just to see your measurements -- they are the only thing worth reading in this magazine and a splendid antidote to poisonous subjectivist propaganda.

2. A speaker is a linear electric motor with a bunch of circuitry inside (+ the box, of course). Mathematically it is described as a system of coupled second order differential equations. The solutions to such equations are typically continuous -- have no breaks. That is one of the reasons why I'm wondering about the terminology.

3. It would be great if you could show more detailed scans of (all) speakers on the website. (I know it cannot be done in print) I think I am not the only reader who would appreciate that.

Best,

Mico

Richard D. George's picture

Would it have made a difference with the treble issues if the speaker cables were bi-wired?

Would it have made a difference if the amplification was Classe Audio?

arnolf's picture

I am looking forward for the review of the 805 D4...
Seriously I have been an avid reader of Stereophile for many years and I think there is enough diversity on the speaker marker to not review the same speaker forever.

Staxguy's picture

Which stereo can reproduce the sound of the piano? The Fidelity Acoustics RFM-1 Bookshelf Loudspeaker ($4000.00 / pair), a notable speaker employing the ScanSpeak Revelator Ring Radiator Tweeter (same as a Magico M5) tweeter was not able to do so.

Is there even one stereo system which can do the job properly? The Steinway Lyingdorf Model D, by virtue of Steinway heritage may be able to. The Bösendorfer VC 7 may be one as well.

We've listened to quite a number of good loudspeakers. The composing is mind-absorbing.

The Bösendorfer VC7 Loudspeaker ($25,000.00 USD) uses resonant plates ("Acoustic Sound-Boards"), mimicking a piano's sound board. The use of two tweeters is an interesting feature. It's almost proto-Genesis (the speaker, not the band), so to say. Sony uses two tweeters too (surrounding) on it's Sony SA-NA2ES ($5,000.00 USD), and coincident models, although not on their Sony SA-AR-1 and Sony SA-AR-2 ($20,000.00 USD) Loudspeakers, too.

Reproducing the piano is a glorious extremity. The frequencies on the keys themselves (on a non-Bösendorfer Imperial Piano ($200,000.00 USD), which has lower) go from 27.5 Hz (A0) to 4,186.01 Hz (C8), standard (equal temperament) tuning. This is ignoring the over-tones, and the sound of the organ stops. An organ will go lower, to 16 Hz. There is ignoring foot-pedal work, also - the thuds and jumps. Now in terms of latant response, 60 - 100 dB.

There can be reproduction with some over-play.

The Steinway Lyngdorf Model D goes for $208,000.00 USD today (and was introduced for $150,000.00 USD in 2007).

Most pianists will prefer the Steinway Model D, which is tuned at 442 Hz, standard, although some will go for a Fazzioli F308.

We'd prefer the Bösendorpher Imperial Grand, in gold leaf, though are settling with two bottles of 311 Helles Lager by Coal Harbour Brewing Company, CHBC, with which to write this review.

There was a Fazzioli, the Brunei, which mimicked the sound of the Bosendorpher IG by presenting a darker sound, though we have not heard it. We would like one, however. Perhaps with less in-lay. :)

How you make your piano is up to you.

Steinway

Allen Fant's picture

I have listened to all of the iterations of this 805 speaker over the years and it never disappoints. A true staple in the B&W catalog. Match it w/ a REL subwoofer and you will be musically rewarded.

Richard D. George's picture

Have you listened to the D3? If so, did you notice the elevated upper treble cited in this review? I did not.

Regarding REL subs, a reviewer of the 805 D3 in a different publication mentioned that it works well with a pair of REL subs. He used a pair of REL T7i's with the 805 D3's with great success.

Allen Fant's picture

Hello Richard,

no- I did not hear any elevated upper treble either.
I will have to search for the other review w/ the REL sub added.

For those whom do not like the REL brand, only Sunfire, would be my second subwoofer choice. Happy Listening!

Richard D. George's picture

Hello Allen:

Reviewer is Neil G. The mention of twin REL T series subs is in the comments section of the online version of this (unnamed) magazine.

I have four S series REL subs in three systems with loss-less Longbow wireless speaker level connections and two other T series REL subs connected speaker level with cables. Happy with all of them. The speaker level connection provides a seamless "feathering" with the main speakers.

hb72's picture

the 805d3 officially reaches down to 42Hz at +/-3dB, while the LS50 officially reaches only to 79Hz +/-3dB, BUT comparing in-room response traces and focussing on frequencies below 80Hz the LS50 seems approx. 2-5dB louder than the 805.
While this might be confirmed by listeners to some extent, perhaps in-room responce curves are not exactly levelled to same percieved volume for all 3 speakers?

Les's picture

Wow, subscribing to Stereophile just for the measurements... That's quite depressingly mind-blowing.

hb72's picture

I have to say I really like how measurements are done by JA, and I usually read them in all detail before I read the critique i.e. subjectivly percieved SQ.

Richard D. George's picture

I went back and compared Fig 3 from the measurements related to the Stereophile review of the 802 D3 to Fig 4 from the measurements related to the review of the Stereophile 805 D3. Not wildly different as both have elevated values in the upper treble.

Yet no mention of elevated / exaggerated treble in Kal's listening comments for the 802 D3. Also no mention of this in other professional reviews of the 805 D3.

Kal used bi-wired cables for the 802 D3 review.

John Atkinson's picture
Richard D. George wrote:
I went back and compared Fig 3 from the measurements related to the Stereophile review of the 802 D3 to Fig 4 from the measurements related to the review of the Stereophile 805 D3. Not wildly different as both have elevated values in the upper treble.

Yet no mention of elevated / exaggerated treble in Kal's listening comments for the 802 D3.

Perception of treble is dependent not just on the tweeter balance but also on the speaker's low-frequency extension and tuning.

John Atkinson
Editor, Stereophile

Richard D. George's picture

... I sure did not hear it and there are no mentions of this in other professional reviews.

We don't have your golden ears. This might save me money.

Pages

Bowers & Wilkins 805 D3 loudspeaker Specifications

Thu, 02/16/2017

COMMENTS
tonykaz's picture

This will fascinating to read.

I just had access to a pair of Pro-Ac Tabletts & a pair of old Magnapan MG2s. I discovered both are still superb and exciting.

How much driver improvement is a darn good question for some brave soul to tackle, I give you full marks for suggesting it. I'll buy a second year's print subscription if you can answer it using your typically engineering based methods. Who else "could" handle this conundrum?

By the way, I was stunned by you calling-out the 21bit DAC design as being obsolete. Once again, I applaud you!

Tony in Michigan

ps. I'm about to go European and embrace all music delivery systems by buying a Linn DS server. I might even invest in a LP12 ( for old time's sake ) which I'll probably display in a sealed, nitrogen filled glass case. I'm hunting for an Ittok and Rosewood Red Koetsu ( not, but maybe a cute red nosed Asak that doesn't have to work ).

mrkaic's picture

I keep reading about discontinuities in John Atkinson's (extremely good) articles. What is shown in Fig. 1 is not a discontinuity, the function appears to be continuous. Rather, the kink at 900 Hz could be a discontinuity in the 1st derivative of the impedance function wrt frequency. It is an important difference.

jmsent's picture

There certainly is a discontinuity in the impedance curve, which would normally not have such a "kink" unless there's a resonance somewhere in the system. Are you suggesting it's a measurement artifact? Having been involved in the driver industry for many years, (now retired) I'd lay odds that this kink is due to an edge reflection in the woofer, due to the use of a low loss rubber surround. It's a common occurrence that will often not be easily visible in a frequency response measurement. Given that JA didn't detect any mechanical resonances around that frequency, it's likely that it originates in the driver itself.

mrkaic's picture

Calling that kink at 900 Hz a discontinuity is not proper mathematical terminology. Loosely speaking, a discontinuity means that the curve is cut -- there is a "gap". This clearly is not the case here. But the slope (the 1st derivative) is not continuous -- has different values if you approach the kink point from the left and from the right.

hb72's picture

--> "inflection point"

John Atkinson's picture
mrkaic wrote:
Calling that kink at 900 Hz a discontinuity is not proper mathematical terminology. Loosely speaking, a discontinuity means that the curve is cut -- there is a "gap". This clearly is not the case here.

I think you are being misled by the relatively sparse data points in the impedance graph. If I had taken reading at, say 1Hz, intervals, then you would have seen a clearly defined discontinuity, equivalent to the Hilbert transform of a peak.

John Atkinson
Editor, Stereophile

mrkaic's picture

John:

1. First, many thanks for your splendid articles. I buy Stereophile just to see your measurements -- they are the only thing worth reading in this magazine and a splendid antidote to poisonous subjectivist propaganda.

2. A speaker is a linear electric motor with a bunch of circuitry inside (+ the box, of course). Mathematically it is described as a system of coupled second order differential equations. The solutions to such equations are typically continuous -- have no breaks. That is one of the reasons why I'm wondering about the terminology.

3. It would be great if you could show more detailed scans of (all) speakers on the website. (I know it cannot be done in print) I think I am not the only reader who would appreciate that.

Best,

Mico

Richard D. George's picture

Would it have made a difference with the treble issues if the speaker cables were bi-wired?

Would it have made a difference if the amplification was Classe Audio?

arnolf's picture

I am looking forward for the review of the 805 D4...
Seriously I have been an avid reader of Stereophile for many years and I think there is enough diversity on the speaker marker to not review the same speaker forever.

Staxguy's picture

Which stereo can reproduce the sound of the piano? The Fidelity Acoustics RFM-1 Bookshelf Loudspeaker ($4000.00 / pair), a notable speaker employing the ScanSpeak Revelator Ring Radiator Tweeter (same as a Magico M5) tweeter was not able to do so.

Is there even one stereo system which can do the job properly? The Steinway Lyingdorf Model D, by virtue of Steinway heritage may be able to. The Bösendorfer VC 7 may be one as well.

We've listened to quite a number of good loudspeakers. The composing is mind-absorbing.

The Bösendorfer VC7 Loudspeaker ($25,000.00 USD) uses resonant plates ("Acoustic Sound-Boards"), mimicking a piano's sound board. The use of two tweeters is an interesting feature. It's almost proto-Genesis (the speaker, not the band), so to say. Sony uses two tweeters too (surrounding) on it's Sony SA-NA2ES ($5,000.00 USD), and coincident models, although not on their Sony SA-AR-1 and Sony SA-AR-2 ($20,000.00 USD) Loudspeakers, too.

Reproducing the piano is a glorious extremity. The frequencies on the keys themselves (on a non-Bösendorfer Imperial Piano ($200,000.00 USD), which has lower) go from 27.5 Hz (A0) to 4,186.01 Hz (C8), standard (equal temperament) tuning. This is ignoring the over-tones, and the sound of the organ stops. An organ will go lower, to 16 Hz. There is ignoring foot-pedal work, also - the thuds and jumps. Now in terms of latant response, 60 - 100 dB.

There can be reproduction with some over-play.

The Steinway Lyngdorf Model D goes for $208,000.00 USD today (and was introduced for $150,000.00 USD in 2007).

Most pianists will prefer the Steinway Model D, which is tuned at 442 Hz, standard, although some will go for a Fazzioli F308.

We'd prefer the Bösendorpher Imperial Grand, in gold leaf, though are settling with two bottles of 311 Helles Lager by Coal Harbour Brewing Company, CHBC, with which to write this review.

There was a Fazzioli, the Brunei, which mimicked the sound of the Bosendorpher IG by presenting a darker sound, though we have not heard it. We would like one, however. Perhaps with less in-lay. :)

How you make your piano is up to you.

Steinway

Allen Fant's picture

I have listened to all of the iterations of this 805 speaker over the years and it never disappoints. A true staple in the B&W catalog. Match it w/ a REL subwoofer and you will be musically rewarded.

Richard D. George's picture

Have you listened to the D3? If so, did you notice the elevated upper treble cited in this review? I did not.

Regarding REL subs, a reviewer of the 805 D3 in a different publication mentioned that it works well with a pair of REL subs. He used a pair of REL T7i's with the 805 D3's with great success.

Allen Fant's picture

Hello Richard,

no- I did not hear any elevated upper treble either.
I will have to search for the other review w/ the REL sub added.

For those whom do not like the REL brand, only Sunfire, would be my second subwoofer choice. Happy Listening!

Richard D. George's picture

Hello Allen:

Reviewer is Neil G. The mention of twin REL T series subs is in the comments section of the online version of this (unnamed) magazine.

I have four S series REL subs in three systems with loss-less Longbow wireless speaker level connections and two other T series REL subs connected speaker level with cables. Happy with all of them. The speaker level connection provides a seamless "feathering" with the main speakers.

hb72's picture

the 805d3 officially reaches down to 42Hz at +/-3dB, while the LS50 officially reaches only to 79Hz +/-3dB, BUT comparing in-room response traces and focussing on frequencies below 80Hz the LS50 seems approx. 2-5dB louder than the 805.
While this might be confirmed by listeners to some extent, perhaps in-room responce curves are not exactly levelled to same percieved volume for all 3 speakers?

Les's picture

Wow, subscribing to Stereophile just for the measurements... That's quite depressingly mind-blowing.

hb72's picture

I have to say I really like how measurements are done by JA, and I usually read them in all detail before I read the critique i.e. subjectivly percieved SQ.

Richard D. George's picture

I went back and compared Fig 3 from the measurements related to the Stereophile review of the 802 D3 to Fig 4 from the measurements related to the review of the Stereophile 805 D3. Not wildly different as both have elevated values in the upper treble.

Yet no mention of elevated / exaggerated treble in Kal's listening comments for the 802 D3. Also no mention of this in other professional reviews of the 805 D3.

Kal used bi-wired cables for the 802 D3 review.

John Atkinson's picture
Richard D. George wrote:
I went back and compared Fig 3 from the measurements related to the Stereophile review of the 802 D3 to Fig 4 from the measurements related to the review of the Stereophile 805 D3. Not wildly different as both have elevated values in the upper treble.

Yet no mention of elevated / exaggerated treble in Kal's listening comments for the 802 D3.

Perception of treble is dependent not just on the tweeter balance but also on the speaker's low-frequency extension and tuning.

John Atkinson
Editor, Stereophile

Richard D. George's picture

... I sure did not hear it and there are no mentions of this in other professional reviews.

We don't have your golden ears. This might save me money.

Pages

Bowers & Wilkins 805 D3 loudspeaker

I have had a long relationship with Bowers & Wilkins. The first B&W speaker I spent serious time with was the DM-6, the infamous "pregnant kangaroo," which was reviewed by Allen Edelstein in December 1977 and which I borrowed for a while after interviewing the company's founder, John Bowers. Ten years later, when I met the woman who was to become my third wife, she already owned a pair of B&W Matrix 801s, a speaker reviewed by Lewis Lipnick in December 1987.
Thu, 02/16/2017

Auralic Altair D/A processor Measurements

Thu, 02/16/2017

COMMENTS
ednazarko's picture

I have an Aries Mini, and had the same kind of connect/disconnect, can't find a network/here's the network, scan/forget issues. I have a Windows based music server that serves all the devices in my home and studio. Some are computers that use the server as a network library, others are just UPnP endpoints. All run with JRiver. But I could never get the Mini to successfully work with the remote library. Many hours of trying, entering path, ID and passwords. Lots of back and forth with tech support. I'd get a lock on the remote library, the Mini would scan everything, and I'd think I solved things, then the next day it couldn't find the library. Start over. Sometimes it'd fail mid-scan several times, then scan fine. Then lose touch with the library again. Tech support said, Windows is a terrible server, just put music on a USB hard disk and connect it.

Feeling rather grumpy, that's what I did, for awhile. Then I thought, you know, I'll just drop Lightning DS and use it as a passive endpoint. When I went to do that, I noticed I could select a remote DLNA library. And... magic. Connected to the remote server, scanned the library. Hasn't lost it in weeks. I may still change it to a passive endpoint because then I'll only have one UI (JRemote) but my conclusion is that the UPnP implementation isn't great. The DLNA is.

Love the sound on the Mini (with the external power supply.) Punches well above its weight, more than good enough for when I'm working. I was thinking about an Altair for another part of the house where an old Logitech Touch has started showing its age, now that I've got the Mini working well via DLNA.

Solarophile's picture

"sitting on a removable board that includes a quad-core ARM Cortex-A9 processor running at 1GHz, 1GB of DDR3 onboard memory, and 4GB of system storage. Auralic claims that this hardware will make it possible for the Altair to be upgraded for such planned features as DSD upsampling, MQA, and room-optimization software."

MQA-Core like the Blusound Node 2, sure. But this kind of CPU processing is very weak and I doubt it's capable of high quality DSD upsampling or room-optimization at a high quality.

I wish companies would stop making claims like this until they can actually show the ability to do it. And I think reviewers should really think about what companies say and realistically consider if there's any truth before just repeating them. Please show a little more skepticism for the unlikely to reduce the chance that your readers end up disappointed.

Jon Iverson's picture
This is why I begin such information with "Auralic claims that . . ." since this is not something I can test. However I get your point: why include it if the reviewer cannot verify the claim.

Pages

Auralic Altair D/A processor Associated Equipment

Thu, 02/16/2017

COMMENTS
ednazarko's picture

I have an Aries Mini, and had the same kind of connect/disconnect, can't find a network/here's the network, scan/forget issues. I have a Windows based music server that serves all the devices in my home and studio. Some are computers that use the server as a network library, others are just UPnP endpoints. All run with JRiver. But I could never get the Mini to successfully work with the remote library. Many hours of trying, entering path, ID and passwords. Lots of back and forth with tech support. I'd get a lock on the remote library, the Mini would scan everything, and I'd think I solved things, then the next day it couldn't find the library. Start over. Sometimes it'd fail mid-scan several times, then scan fine. Then lose touch with the library again. Tech support said, Windows is a terrible server, just put music on a USB hard disk and connect it.

Feeling rather grumpy, that's what I did, for awhile. Then I thought, you know, I'll just drop Lightning DS and use it as a passive endpoint. When I went to do that, I noticed I could select a remote DLNA library. And... magic. Connected to the remote server, scanned the library. Hasn't lost it in weeks. I may still change it to a passive endpoint because then I'll only have one UI (JRemote) but my conclusion is that the UPnP implementation isn't great. The DLNA is.

Love the sound on the Mini (with the external power supply.) Punches well above its weight, more than good enough for when I'm working. I was thinking about an Altair for another part of the house where an old Logitech Touch has started showing its age, now that I've got the Mini working well via DLNA.

Solarophile's picture

"sitting on a removable board that includes a quad-core ARM Cortex-A9 processor running at 1GHz, 1GB of DDR3 onboard memory, and 4GB of system storage. Auralic claims that this hardware will make it possible for the Altair to be upgraded for such planned features as DSD upsampling, MQA, and room-optimization software."

MQA-Core like the Blusound Node 2, sure. But this kind of CPU processing is very weak and I doubt it's capable of high quality DSD upsampling or room-optimization at a high quality.

I wish companies would stop making claims like this until they can actually show the ability to do it. And I think reviewers should really think about what companies say and realistically consider if there's any truth before just repeating them. Please show a little more skepticism for the unlikely to reduce the chance that your readers end up disappointed.

Jon Iverson's picture
This is why I begin such information with "Auralic claims that . . ." since this is not something I can test. However I get your point: why include it if the reviewer cannot verify the claim.

Pages

Auralic Altair D/A processor Specifications

Thu, 02/16/2017

COMMENTS
ednazarko's picture

I have an Aries Mini, and had the same kind of connect/disconnect, can't find a network/here's the network, scan/forget issues. I have a Windows based music server that serves all the devices in my home and studio. Some are computers that use the server as a network library, others are just UPnP endpoints. All run with JRiver. But I could never get the Mini to successfully work with the remote library. Many hours of trying, entering path, ID and passwords. Lots of back and forth with tech support. I'd get a lock on the remote library, the Mini would scan everything, and I'd think I solved things, then the next day it couldn't find the library. Start over. Sometimes it'd fail mid-scan several times, then scan fine. Then lose touch with the library again. Tech support said, Windows is a terrible server, just put music on a USB hard disk and connect it.

Feeling rather grumpy, that's what I did, for awhile. Then I thought, you know, I'll just drop Lightning DS and use it as a passive endpoint. When I went to do that, I noticed I could select a remote DLNA library. And... magic. Connected to the remote server, scanned the library. Hasn't lost it in weeks. I may still change it to a passive endpoint because then I'll only have one UI (JRemote) but my conclusion is that the UPnP implementation isn't great. The DLNA is.

Love the sound on the Mini (with the external power supply.) Punches well above its weight, more than good enough for when I'm working. I was thinking about an Altair for another part of the house where an old Logitech Touch has started showing its age, now that I've got the Mini working well via DLNA.

Solarophile's picture

"sitting on a removable board that includes a quad-core ARM Cortex-A9 processor running at 1GHz, 1GB of DDR3 onboard memory, and 4GB of system storage. Auralic claims that this hardware will make it possible for the Altair to be upgraded for such planned features as DSD upsampling, MQA, and room-optimization software."

MQA-Core like the Blusound Node 2, sure. But this kind of CPU processing is very weak and I doubt it's capable of high quality DSD upsampling or room-optimization at a high quality.

I wish companies would stop making claims like this until they can actually show the ability to do it. And I think reviewers should really think about what companies say and realistically consider if there's any truth before just repeating them. Please show a little more skepticism for the unlikely to reduce the chance that your readers end up disappointed.

Jon Iverson's picture
This is why I begin such information with "Auralic claims that . . ." since this is not something I can test. However I get your point: why include it if the reviewer cannot verify the claim.

Pages

Auralic Altair D/A processor Page 2

Thu, 02/16/2017

COMMENTS
ednazarko's picture

I have an Aries Mini, and had the same kind of connect/disconnect, can't find a network/here's the network, scan/forget issues. I have a Windows based music server that serves all the devices in my home and studio. Some are computers that use the server as a network library, others are just UPnP endpoints. All run with JRiver. But I could never get the Mini to successfully work with the remote library. Many hours of trying, entering path, ID and passwords. Lots of back and forth with tech support. I'd get a lock on the remote library, the Mini would scan everything, and I'd think I solved things, then the next day it couldn't find the library. Start over. Sometimes it'd fail mid-scan several times, then scan fine. Then lose touch with the library again. Tech support said, Windows is a terrible server, just put music on a USB hard disk and connect it.

Feeling rather grumpy, that's what I did, for awhile. Then I thought, you know, I'll just drop Lightning DS and use it as a passive endpoint. When I went to do that, I noticed I could select a remote DLNA library. And... magic. Connected to the remote server, scanned the library. Hasn't lost it in weeks. I may still change it to a passive endpoint because then I'll only have one UI (JRemote) but my conclusion is that the UPnP implementation isn't great. The DLNA is.

Love the sound on the Mini (with the external power supply.) Punches well above its weight, more than good enough for when I'm working. I was thinking about an Altair for another part of the house where an old Logitech Touch has started showing its age, now that I've got the Mini working well via DLNA.

Solarophile's picture

"sitting on a removable board that includes a quad-core ARM Cortex-A9 processor running at 1GHz, 1GB of DDR3 onboard memory, and 4GB of system storage. Auralic claims that this hardware will make it possible for the Altair to be upgraded for such planned features as DSD upsampling, MQA, and room-optimization software."

MQA-Core like the Blusound Node 2, sure. But this kind of CPU processing is very weak and I doubt it's capable of high quality DSD upsampling or room-optimization at a high quality.

I wish companies would stop making claims like this until they can actually show the ability to do it. And I think reviewers should really think about what companies say and realistically consider if there's any truth before just repeating them. Please show a little more skepticism for the unlikely to reduce the chance that your readers end up disappointed.

Jon Iverson's picture
This is why I begin such information with "Auralic claims that . . ." since this is not something I can test. However I get your point: why include it if the reviewer cannot verify the claim.

Pages

Auralic Altair D/A processor

Now that we've entered a world of post-disc audio (sorry, AnalogPlanet.com), audiophile streaming and file-playback products have appeared by the hundreds, and many companies are on their second, third, or even fourth-generation models.

The Chinese company Auralic Limited has been pushing bits around for seven years, releasing a half-dozen streaming and network devices. Their newest, the Altair, combines in a single package the functions of a DAC, streamer, and headphone amplifier with volume control, allowing it also to operate as an all-digital-system preamplifier. Just add power amp and speakers.

Thu, 02/16/2017

Universal Music Group Goes MQA

On February 16, Universal Music Group and MQA announced a multi-year agreement that will encode UMG's huge catalog of master recordings in MQA. In the language of the press release, the agreement promises "to make some of the world's most celebrated recordings available for the first time in Hi-Res Audio streaming." UMG's labels include ECM, Interscope, Geffen, A&M, Capitol, Island, Def Jam, Decca, Verve, Blue Note, Virgin, and EMI.
Thu, 02/16/2017

A Year of Dueling Shows

This year is not only one of fallout from the most divisive political campaigns of our time, but will also one of competing audio shows too close for comfort. Southern California will see dueling audio shows three months and 35 miles apart, and New York City and Washington, DC will host shows on consecutive weekends. While a proliferation of audio shows potentially presents plenty of opportunities for audiophiles to hear new gear, such conflicts ultimately limit which manufacturers can exhibit where, and can render some shows a poor value.
Tue, 02/14/2017

Pages