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New source needed for new Rotel Amp

Mogami Cables

Amarendra

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Oct 25, 2010
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Mumbai
Hi,

I am quite confused about finalizing a source for my Rotel RA 10 amp which I picked up last week. The amp is fantastic and I am now thinking of migrating from the Panasonic bdt 220 to a dedicated CDP or a music streamer or server. I have about 25-30 CDs and a fair bit of flac and alac files.
I have evaluated the following options:
1. Blue sound node - pure streamer but overpriced at about 45 k. Benefit is huge convenience.
2. Marantz CD6005 - can play CDs and wav files through USB. Ease of use is tremendous but may not be the way forward ?
3. Laptop with USB DAC such as Cambridge audio dacmagic 100. Using laptop is painful- switching it on and off all the time.
4. Synology single bay NAS with USB DAC connected directly to it and using ipad/android phone as controller. A 3tb Synology will cost about 25k plus then the DAC. The dacmagic will cost about 18 k

I am not able to figure out the way forward and any fresh advice is most welcome.

Please let me know your views.

Thanks
 

ranjeetrain

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Mar 26, 2008
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My music PC boots in 28 seconds with a standard HDD. With SSD the boot time is under 5 seconds.

5 seconds is smaller than time taken to insert a CD and hit play.

5 seconds is way too smaller than time it takes to choose tracks to play on a tiny mobile screen.

I have a CD player, have used NAS solution etc. After trying out all possibilities finally settled with computer playback. Nothing beats computer playback in sophistication, fidelity, convenience and economy. My verdict: choose a computer each time you can.
 

Jairus

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Feb 21, 2009
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Invest in a good DAC. The higher end the DAC, the better. Since your amp is Rotel, think Audiolab/Musical Fidelity/Rega and manage for now with any laptop.

The best software is JRiver Media Centre hands down. They now have a smartphone remote app. Its not very expensive

Later on invest in a dedicated small PC music server. The best bet would be a mac mini. i am using a HP mini PC which has a hdmi out so my TV is the monitor....
 

ranjeetrain

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Jairus offered a good advice. Don't get too hung up on "what hardware, what software". Most PCs in production today are an overkill for normal music playback. To put that comment in a better perspective, the playback won't be a bottleneck in a system costing under 1.5 Lacs (excluding source).

Once your rest of the system is resolving enough you can venture into optimizing your hardware and software. The topic on computer playback has been discussed here before. Do some search and reading. Look for thread titled "Let's talk digital". It has got lot of info of your interest.

If you are looking for a quick advice:

(1) Get a decent specced laptop or a Macmini.
(2) If you aren't too computer savvy, get JRiver. Otherwise get Foobar.
(3) Get a good DAC with Asynchronous USB input.

Done. You'll be up and running in an hour with or without help from a computer savvy friend.

As your system and your interest evolves you can read up and indulge in some tweaking.
 

Amarendra

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 25, 2010
Messages
725
Points
63
Location
Mumbai
Hi, arrived at a simpler solution. I realized that my marantz sr5007 had pure analog outs for zone 2. So I can playback 24/ 192 through USB in zone 2 and amplify the sound through the Rotel. This analog out is different from the pre outs for front channels since that sends out a pre amped signal. Now the volume control is with Rotel only.
Many thanks for your inputs.
 
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