Innuos Statement music server Jason Victor Serinus November 2023

Jason Victor Serinus returned to the Innuos Statement in November 2023 (Vol.46 No.11):

On April 2020, when I reviewed the original version of the top-of-the-line, two-box Innuos Statement Music Server/Streamer (then $13,750, now $16,700+), it was able to do all of the things you would hope a server could do: play back music from its internal SSD or an external NAS; stream music from several music-streaming services; and easily play and rip music from CDs inserted into a built-in disc drive (a feature some other servers lack). I liked that it allowed me to use either Roon or—for those who do not wish to subscribe to Roon or who don't need that program's rich feature set—InnuOS.

I also had some concerns. I thought the Statement offered negligible sonic improvements over playback through my considerably smaller and less expensive Roon Nucleus+ music server/streamer. The InnuOS software was best described as a frustrating work in progress; Innuos Founder Nuno Vitorino told me then that it was about to be "rebuilt from the ground up." Innuos's preference for a carefully engineered, reclocked asynchronous USB output was also a cause for concern because, in my experience, USB often sounds inferior to Ethernet, AES3, or S/PDIF.

More than a year ago, Innuos released the Innuos Statement NG ($21,700 with 1TB of internal SSD storage), which included a major upgrade to its power supply. It also introduced the Innuos Sense control app for phone and pad, and made it easy to switch between InnuOS and Roon playback software. The company had already begun to revamp InnuOS, and that work has continued. These changes mandated this follow-up review.

Before I installed the Statement NG, I witnessed Statement/Statement NG comparisons at two audio shows. Both times, the sonic improvements the Next-Gen power supply yielded were manifest. Under challenging show conditions, the differences in transparency, color saturation, and musical realism were easy to hear, not at all subtle.

During the same period, my ability to better hear components' strengths and weaknesess in my own system improved with multiple system upgrades. First, the dCS Rossini DAC/Rossini Clock pairing was replaced by dCS's top-of-the-line, three-piece dCS Vivaldi Apex DAC/Master Clock/Upsampler Plus. Instead of dCS's built-in volume control, I now use the D'Agostino Momentum HD preamp, which highlights color differences. My Wilson Alexia 2s were replaced by the considerably more revealing, better-controlled Wilson Alexia Vs with the now-standard Acoustic Diodes. Monoblock amplifiers were upgraded from D'Agostino Progressions to a pair of D'Agostino Momentum M400 MxVs. I upped the Roon Nucleus+ performance by switching its external power source from an HDPlex 200 to the notably quieter, more effective Nordost QSource with top-line QSource LEMO connectors. I simplified, upgraded, and refined my Ethernet optical streaming connection; added a Ferrum Hypsos linear/switching hybrid power supply to the NAS (network-attached storage device) and a SOtM sCLK-OCX10 Master Clock and sPS-500 power supply to the etherRegen optical converter; changed some cabling and room treatment; and upgraded my electrical wiring. So, time for a new listen.

In response to an email query, Vitorino shared with me that the Statement could be upgraded at the factory to the Next-Gen linear power supply. The upgrade entails changes to the AC/DC conversion section in the Statement's bottom chassis and the DC-regulation stage in the upper chassis. Specifically, the upgrade includes five major changes:

• Replacing passive rectification with active rectification. This change, Vitorino wrote, "drastically reduces power dissipation, heat generation, voltage loss, and diode on/off switching noise. Because the bridge is faster, it lowers the overall impedance of the power supply."

• Upgrading the reservoir capacitors in collaboration with power supply expert Dr. Sean Jacobs (footnote 1) with a "massive, 10mH choke and 500,000µF of Mundorf capacitors," an increase in capacitance of 3× over the Statement's previous supply.

• A new "Adaptive Vibration Control" platform for mounting the capacitor modules, which combines Panzerholz wood with "a specially formulated gel-layer reducing significantly the vibration at mid and high frequencies."

• Dr. Jacobs was also involved in the design of new regulator modules using CX architecture, which "allows us to lower peak-to-peak noise around 100 times compared to the previous regulator module." Component quality has also been upgraded to include "several Audio Note Kaisei capacitors per regulator module."

• A new "CPU Booster module" provides "up to 15A current to the CPU while maintaining a Linear Power Supply Design."

"The new power supply design," Vitorino continued, "benefits all components on the Statement such as the CPU, SSD, USB Reclocker with its own OCXO clock, and Ethernet module with its own OCXO clock.

"We use a direct, 24MHz OCXO with 3 parts per billion–precision clock on the USB Reclocker as well as a separate 25MHz OCXO (3 ppb) clock for the Ethernet clock module," he said. "This means the Statement already uses very high precision clocks instead of relying on an external 10MHz clock, which would then require a PLL to convert the 10MHz signal to the respective 24MHz and 25MHz required. This reclocking scheme avoids losing precision from an external clock's external cables and connectors as well as losing precision from using the [phase-locked loop]."

Once the Statement NG had settled in, it was easy to hear the improvement over the Roon Nucleus+, even with its external power supply, regardless of software choice. Results were consistent whether I played back files stored on the Statement NG's internal SSD, files stored on my NAS, or streamed from Tidal or Qobuz. On every parameter on my audiophile checklist—color, image size, transparency, weight, depth, musical flow, detail, and emotional impact—the Innuos Statement NG bested the Roon Nucleus+.

While the best-sounding input on the dCS Vivaldi Apex/Upsampler Plus/Vivaldi Master Clock trio remains Ethernet, the Innuos Statement NG delivers its best sound to the Vivaldi by sending its signal through its reclocked USB port. (There is a second USB port that isn't reclocked, which facilitates easy comparisons between clocked and unclocked outputs as well as to Ethernet.)

As Innuos has continued to upgrade InnuOS software, I've grown to use it almost exclusively because with the Statement NG, music sounds more vital than it does through Roon.

In the latest version of InnuOS, a single search now displays recordings from the internal SSD, Qobuz, and Tidal on the same page. (InnuOS previously required separate searches for each source.) Bit depth, sampling rate, format (including MQA, which Innuos supports), and liner notes (when present) are easily accessible. It's also easy to move forward and back within tracks or from track to track. 32-bit file playback is supported. InnuOS can display albums stored in its SSD by the date they were added to the collection as well as by album title, artist, and release date. For this reviewer, who is constantly adding music to his library and needs quick access to the most recent files, this is a make-or-break feature. Still missing is the ability to display albums in streaming-service searches by release date. Nor can you see all available versions of an album on those streaming services; InnuOS currently displays just one, opting for hi-rez whenever it's available.

Sometimes, InnuOS fails to display album art unless the cover files are titled Cover.jpg or Cover.png. Often the first nine tracks of a release fail to display in the correct order unless the files for those tracks begin with "0," as in "01-...", "02-...". If each track's title doesn't start with the track number, tracks will display in the wrong order.

If you listen mostly to music from streaming services or to files downloaded from commercial download sites, it's possible you'll never encounter these problems. They usually have their ducks in a row. But if you rip your CDs or, like me, deal with a lot of pre-release albums, encountering them occasionally is a virtual certainty. InnuOS shares this fault with every music OS I've tried, including Roon. Both products—Roon and InnuOS—often struggle with multi-CD/multi-folder rips (footnote 2), failing to display tracks in the correct order and sometimes splitting a single recording into several folders.

To get around these quirks, you will likely need to edit metadata by hand. Innuos allows for that, providing tools you can use to edit metadata and add imagery (footnote 3).

As of now, InnuOS can only access one volume of a NAS that's formatted into two or more volumes. Only by switching to Roon could I access all four 6TB volumes on my NAS through the Statement NG. Roon can rescan an entire 6TB volume on my NAS and add new titles and tracks far faster than InnuOS can. Vitorino assures me that future software updates will address his software's NAS-access limitations, improve rescan performance for users with large NAS libraries, and automatically add new titles once they're loaded onto an external NAS. (Roon, too, requires a rescan if you want to immediately access files newly added to a NAS.)

Currently, the largest storage option Innuos offers is 8TB; the 8TB option adds $2800 to the price. Servers from Aurender and Antipodes offer storage options up to 24TB storage.

Roon is better than InnuOS in services, integration, matching albums with their covers, metadata manipulation, and so on. InnuOS, on the other hand, sounds better.

What's more, I continue to appreciate the ability to use the Statement NG to easily rip some CDs containing recordings not available via streaming services—to its internal SSD or my NAS. I can scan and add cover art and liner notes to ripped CDs to the CD's music folder, and if I give those files the right filenames, InnuOS recognizes the cover art and liner notes I've scanned and added to those CDs' music folders.

The Innuos Statement NG music server, with its Next-Gen linear power supply upgrade and the latest InnuOS software, sounds superior to the pre-NG statement and to the current Roon Nucleus+; indeed, it is sonically excellent in absolute terms. The latest InnuOS software offers major advances over earlier versions. Roon remains the superior app for finding music, learning about artists, and so on, but Innuos is superior for playback. I now use InnuOS as playback software a good 98% of the time, because it consistently delivers superior color saturation, transparency, and musical satisfaction. While the InnuOS software has room for improvement, the Statement NG has become an essential part of my reference system. It deserves the highest rating in Recommended Components.—Jason Victor Serinus

Footnote 1: I wasn't familiar with Jacobs, so I looked him up. He is company director and audio electronics engineer at Custom HiFi Cables Ltd., which specializes in power supplies and power cords but also makes a few interconnects, selling them at prices that are modest in hi-fi terms. He earned the title "Dr." via a PhD in robotics, received in 2010 from the University of Leeds. The title of his dissertation was Adaptive Control of a Climbing Robot. He has a master's degree from the same institution, in "mechanotronics," a mixture of mechanical and electronic engineering. That sounds like fine training for designing power supplies.—Jim Austin

Footnote 2: Think full-length opera or a multi-CD set of Beethoven's nine symphonies, especially when the individual CDs in the box do not correspond to any previous commercial release.

Footnote 3: I haven't edited metadata in InnuOS, but I've done it in Roon, and it's frustrating. It's unfortunately still true, as it has been ever since I first started ripping CDs, that anyone serious about streaming needs to learn to use a music-metadata editor. I haven't tried that many, but my preference is mp3tag. There's a learning curve; probably, there are more user-friendly apps. See

Bogolu Haranath's picture

Waiting for a review of the Innuos Phoenix USB Reclocker by JVS :-) ..........

chuckles304's picture

Here's to hoping no one accuses JVS of trying to spread plague by having his sister-in-law over or "waving his middle finger" at those of us who can't afford the server.

Other than that, nice review.

Jason Victor Serinus's picture

I'm glad you like the review.

My sister-in-law returned to Oakland safely on January 3. The only plague she carried with her was the hi-end audio bug.

Unfortunately, she also returned to her job teaching 4th graders. That's where she may have contracted COVID-19. She and her hubby have now fully recovered. Fingers are currently crossed for my neighbors two houses down. We only have 19 confirmed cases in the entire county, and three are my neighbors.

Stay safe.

Bogolu Haranath's picture

Uncle Sam may start tracking your neighborhood with GPS :-) ........

John Atkinson's picture
I have written a follow-up review of the Innuos server for the May issue, comparing it with the Roon Nucleus+.

John Atkinson
Technical Editor, Stereophile

Bogolu Haranath's picture

JA1 could also review the Innuos Phoenix USB Reclocker :-) ........

Bogolu Haranath's picture

May be JA1 could also review the new Aurender flag-ship W20SE music server :-) .......

DH's picture

The measurements are at a level of -130 to -145db; so any noise or differences are inaudible in any case, aren't they?
Would seem to belie the descriptions in the review.

In addition, the results with the Mytek would indicate that with any well engineered audiophile DAC the Statement makes no difference. The Dragonfly DACs aren't really audiophile, and the Cobalt actually measures worse than it's $100 cheaper brother.

thyname's picture

JVS: you have the Roon facts a bit wrong here. The experimental feature is when using Statement as Roon Core with SqueezeLite Player. I wish I could post a screen grab here to show you that setting on my Statement. There is nothing experimental here when using Statement as “regular” Roon Core only, or Roon Core + Player.

Here is the description on the experimental feature:

****(Experimental) New option in Roon Settings to allow using our internal player with Roon, enabling RAM playback. Please see setup instructions below.***

Also, I was shocked to hear you liked Nucleus more than Statement as a Roon Core. To me, Statement when used as Core + Roon Endpoint is significantly better than when used as a Player only with Roon Nucleus as the Core. Even the Zenith MK3 I used to own before the Statement is better that way. I suggest you give it another shot, and ask Innuos folks for help with the set up, as something must have been terribly wrong with the way you had configured stuff.

Habanero Monk's picture

My endpoint system buffers entire tracks. How does this server help vs my QNAP?

CG's picture

Perhaps the measurements would be more revealing if they were made using the Max Hold function in the analyzer. That would capture peaks in the noise spectra over a period of time. Averaging tends to, well, average incoherent or faux-coherent disturbances into almost nothingness. That's the reason for using averaging.

Many sources of noise and interference only appear every few samples. So, they'd get averaged out or only appear as a modest bump in the noise floor. In the communications system biz, engineers figured this out some time back. You can lose a couple symbols out of a thousand, and it only shows as a couple hundredths of a dB in averaged degradation. Yet, those bits are entirely corrupted.

People tend to listen to a continuum of samples - how silly! - which means that averaging isn't representative of how something might sound. A noise burst that only appears once every hundred samples might be pretty loud for those samples, but the average would only show a slight perturbation.

I'm not sure whether the most recent Audio Precision products have this function. Older units certainly did, and AP is not a company that skimps on useful design features.

This might be a trip down the rabbit hole in regard to audio. It only takes a couple mouse clicks and a small amount of time to see if there's anything there. (Easy for me to say - I'm not the guy doing the work!)

John Atkinson's picture
CG wrote:
Perhaps the measurements would be more revealing if they were made using the Max Hold function in the analyzer. That would capture peaks in the noise spectra over a period of time.

I will try this. I have been using averaging because so many of these things at very low levels become impossible to see without the noisefloor being lowered by the averaging.

CG wrote:
This might be a trip down the rabbit hole in regard to audio.

There's always that possibility, of course. :-)

John Atkinson
Technical Editor, Stereophile

CG's picture

This might be compared to (maybe) not seeing the forest for the trees.

But, you're partially retired, right? Mostly confined to home for now, right? No concerts or time at the pub, right? So, you probably are just looking for things to keep you busy.

No need to thank me...

Bogolu Haranath's picture

JA1 is currently busy, binge-watching movies on Netflix ......... He could take a break and do something useful in audio ...... Just kidding JA1 :-) ........

John Atkinson's picture
Bogolu Haranath wrote:
JA1 is currently busy, binge-watching movies on Netflix ......... He could take a break and do something useful in audio ...

I just posted my follow-up review of the Innuos Statement from the new (May) issue. It's appended to the end of Jason's review:

John Atkinson
Technical Editor, Stereophile

Bogolu Haranath's picture

I'm glad JA1 is binge-reviewing audio equipment instead of binge-watching movies :-) .......

Bogolu Haranath's picture

With all due respect ...... it is not a fair comparison ....... You (JA1) could have used at least Vimberg Mino speakers for Innuos comparison test, not LS-50 :-) .......

John Atkinson's picture
Bogolu Haranath wrote:
With all due respect ...... it is not a fair comparison ....... You (JA1) could have used at least Vimberg Mino speakers for Innuos comparison test, not LS-50 :-)

Perhaps the Mino speakers would have been more revealing. Perhaps. However, I wanted to use my regular reference system for the comparisons with the Nucleus +. More of a real-world context, if you wish.

John Atkinson
Technical Editor, Stereophile

direstraitsfan98's picture

The best streamers seem to jump in price from entry level ones.
I just want something with good features, an attractive looking chassis, and a price tag that makes sense for me. Doesn't seem like one exists that checks all these boxes... perhaps I will just make do running my computer into my DAC until I'm close to retirement age...

Bogolu Haranath's picture

Mytek Brooklyn Bridge (DAC) reviewed by Stereophile, is not very expensive ....... Of course, it also has a DAC :-) ........

direstraitsfan98's picture

After doing some research I found that Innous sells a much simpler and 'standard' version of their statement Statement model that as far as I can tell has the same features. The price? 10 percent of the statement's cost. I think I will look to get one of those. I'm not considering the Mytek because I have a dedicated DAC already.

Is it safe to say that the standard Innous Zen will offer up a large portion of the Innous Statement's performance, at a fraction of the cost? Probably.

Bogolu Haranath's picture

May I ask, what DAC you are using? ........ Does it offer several digital reconstruction filters like Mytek? :-) ........

Bogolu Haranath's picture

The new Innuos Zen models also offer 1 TB HDD storage :-) ........

Jason Victor Serinus's picture

I chose the Statement for review because when I heard it at the audio show, it was noticeably more transparent than the server beneath it, even with the USB reclocker added. Have you considered the Roon Nucleus or Nucleus + together with an outboard LPS? You have to use Roon, of course, which costs $, and there's no storage unless you add some. But it sure sounds great.

Bogolu Haranath's picture

When we add storage, Nucleus becomes an 'Atomic nucleus' :-) ........

Bogolu Haranath's picture

The only thing MBB can't do is, you can't use it to post comments on Stereophile website :-) .......

jameslockie's picture

I am currently using the supplied wall wart.
Be interested to learn of your experiences with External LPS for this device.

Jason Victor Serinus's picture

I discuss this in a review recently posted to AudioStream: Much smoother sound, greater detail, more saturated colors, far deeper bass... fill in the blanks.

In virtually every interview I've conducted with a manufacturer or designer, they have emphasized the supreme importance of the power supply or transformer. In my admittedly limited experience, what is true for internal power supplies applies equally to external power supplies. Unless a designer has made a superhuman effort to isolate the noise from a switch mode power supply, from my admittedly limited experience, a linear power supply will improve the sound. I'm not an electrical engineer, and cannot discuss this with more sophistication - for all I know, there's an isolated example where what I've said isn't true - but I've certainly heard the difference in my system. I would never want to go back.

There are undoubtedly better LPSs on the market than the ones I've tried, but I haven't had the financial resources or time to explore them. The ones I've used have made such a significant difference that I've been happy. Once we get past COVID-19, or I win the lottery...

jameslockie's picture

Thanks JVS.
Good article.
I will investigate LPS alternatives.

tresaino's picture

I don’t have the Statement but am very very happy with its smaller brother Zen Mk3. Software being the same, I never encountered the software problems JVS described. And sonically the Zen Mk3 delivers in my system, in spades. I don’t say this easily but over the years I learned reading between the lines and found Serinus’ review overall wrong and also unfair. I had a few servers and streamers before buying the Mk3 and never looked back. The Zen doesn’t cost a fortune, sounds much better and the software is very intuitive and also very reliable. I was almost upset reading JVS’ review. Thank to John Atkinson for a more balanced follow up review. Greetings from a Stereophile subscriber since more than 25 years.