Chromecast on Uniti Atom - Gapless playback

I'm not sure how significant "pushing" vs "pulling" is but I believe that the Nova accessing music from Asset on my NAS would be pulling whereas Roon is pushing and both work for gapless. 

I would encourage you to try Tidal (free trial available) - on my system it sounds almost indistinguishable from ripped CDs and there is also quite a lot of  MQA available now. I used to use Qobuz and preferred it to Tidal, but Tidal has raised its game in recent months, at least in relation to the types of music I like. I was looking forward to Chromecast on the Nova so I could revert to Tidal but I doubt that I'll bother now.

Absolutely makes no difference at all.. down at the media level and network transfer level the idea of push or pull is irrelevant. The concept of UPnP push or pull comes from the higher level application control architecture.

When it comes to gap less or cross fading, if one pulling, this processing is done by the renderer, if pushing this is done by the media server... but pushing can be fraught  with challenges for gapless, so pulling tends to work better with gapless and cross fading... as the renderer can open two streams around the media edge points so as to be able to seamlessly mix... this is what Naim does.

I'm also suspicious of the idea of pushing a media stream to a Naim device.  Fortunately there is a simple test that will often detect if this is really the case.

Play a file (i.e. a track), and press pause, then resume playback.  if however there are glitches on resume  (ticks, clicks, little bits missing etc.) that suggests that the device doesn't have local control of the stream's position (i.e. the stream is being pushed).  However, if it does this several times without a glitch, that suggests that the device actually has control of the stream and is best thought of as "pulling" the stream,

If there are no glitches what the controller may be doing is pushing the playlist (or a reference to a playlist it can read) to the device (this is the normal way that Naim streaming devices work anyway) and the device uses this playlist to create an internal play queue.  The device then works through the play queue, requesting the stream from the file using the DLNA server to generate the stream for it.  To play a single track like this it creates a play queue with only one entry.

The problem with Chromecast is that most Chromecast apps aren't written to work this way.  They don't play a complete playlist as a single entity, instead they treat the playlist as a set of separate individual files.  For each file they tell the Chromecast library to open the connection to the Chromecast, open the file, play it and then close its connections when its finished.  For the next file in the list they have to start opening the connections all over again.  It's entirely possible to play gapless using Chromecast, but it requires the app developer to do more work, so they just don't do it.

It's likely that with some UPnP devices or network set-ups Audirvana is taking a similar approach, telling the device to open and play files one at a time rather than pushing a playlist.

Thanks Huge.

Hope I'm not confusing everyone with the semantics of push/pull, but in essence I was trying to differentiate between the streamer requesting the stream from a URI or list of them using 'pull' to describe this vs a server elsewhere rendering and 'pushing' the stream to the Naim to play.

It's interesting to discuss the ways DLNA/UPnP can work as I'm learning where the problems ca lie and how they might be solved.

The Audirvana developer replied to a query suggesting that with its UPnP implementation that the Naim is getting the track list from Audirvana but not 'pulling' the next track soon enough to play back gapless - if that's the case I hope that Naim can modify the firmware to allow this, were it an issue with Audirvana rendering the stream for playback there'd almost certainly be a software solution at their end.

The thread has drifted somewhat from playing gapless via Chromecast (Qobuz iOS App for me) to trying to use Audirvana which has Qobuz/Tidal support on the Mac to access my Qobuz service to play non-purchased content by internet streaming only.  (For purchased files, I'd prefer to have them on a USB device or NAS, it's the non-purchased gapless albums that are posing the problem).

Likes (0)