Linn Knekt Kivor hard-disk multizone music system Associated Equipment

Sidebar 2: Associated Equipment

Digital sources: Mark Levinson No.31.5 CD transport, Meridian 800 DVD-V/CD/CD-R player, Technics DVD-A10 DVD-A player.
Digital processors: Z-Systems rdp-1 digital control center; Perpetual Technologies P-3A (with $349 Monolithic Sound P3 power supply), Musical Fidelity X-24K, Mark Levinson No.30.6 D/A processors; dCS 972 D/D processor.
Power amplifiers: Mark Levinson No.33H monoblocks, Krell KSA-50.Loudspeakers: Revel Ultima Studio, Revel Performa M20, Totem Acoustic Mani-2, Joseph Audio RM33 Signature.
Cables: Datalinks: AudioQuest SVD-4 (S/PDIF), 50' unbranded Cat.5 Ethernet cable (AES/EBU), Kimber Illuminations Orchid (AES/EBU).
Interconnects: Linn and Canare unbalanced (processors to preamp); Madrigal CZ-Gel balanced (pre- to power). Speaker: AudioQuest Gibraltar, Synergistic Research Designer's Reference2. AC: Synergistic Research Designer's Reference2, PS Audio Lab Cable.
Accessories: PS Audio Power Plant 300 at 90Hz (preamp, processors), Audio Power Industries Power Wedge 116 (Tunboks), ASC Tube Traps, RPG Abffusors.—John Atkinson

8787 Perimeter Park Boulevard
Jacksonville, FL 32216
(904) 645-5242

MikeMaine's picture

Or you can buy a Mac

CuteStudio's picture

... that you can run the SeeDeClip4 multiuser music server on a regular, noisy PC in the spare room and access and/or control the music using any modern gadget like a Chromebook, tablet, iPad etc.

This makes the choice of client easy - there's lots of cheap alternatives and an iPad can be hooked up to Toslink using an Apple TV or Airport Express etc.

The free version does a lot more than you'd think, it's a complete home audio solution.

JonGreen's picture

A little late to the table(!), but thanks for an excellent, well-balanced review.

I was the systems architect of the Imerge SoundServer, which was rebadged (with some enhancements) as Linn's Kivor. I also designed the XiVA-Link communications protocol, and worked with Linn's Alan Clark (designer of the iconic Sondek CD12) on the S/PDIF hardware and drivers: Alan did most of the hardware work; I assisted in some of the FPGA firmware, and write the drivers.

I can confirm the accuracy of just about everything reported here. During 2000, both SoundServer and Kivor were going through a series of rapid evolutions. Towards the end of 2001, the products were settling down.

I'm a little surprised that they were reported as being MP3-only, though. One of the key selling points for audiophiles was that both products were able to rip and play uncompressed audio. This is why SoundServer (and, I believe, Kivor) came with up to 1.1 TB of storage - a massive amount at the time - configured as eleven 100 GB drives. It ran hot and heavy (and, yes, a bit noisy), but had enough elbow room to accommodate a lot of raw audio.

It was true that we only had one genre allocated to a track or album. This was partly because of the limited information we received from Gracenote. I always felt that having more than one genre per item in the database would be a good thing, but I was over-ruled. Apart from anything else, it would have made genre-based searches substantially slower, for a bunch of technical reasons it's not worth going into here. I think that if we'd done it today, we'd have used a noSQL database such as MongoDB or Couchbase, so we could have had the flexibility to enhance with additional fields such as user-assigned genres or arbitrary tags.

Anyway, thanks again. Great memories, revisiting that part of my career!