Dipping toes into the NAS (world) with no clue and getting rid of the CD player

The most complicated thing I have ever done on a PC and I found it very easy to do at the time without any outside help was to set my laptop up for streaming for services like Qobuz, spotify etc..

I bought an Arcam irDAC and went on their website, downloaded their AISO driver to allow 24bit/192khz class 2 for USB, plugged a JitterBug filter into the laptop, connected it up using a Chord Silver-Plus USB cable and I was off. Have been using this configuration (trouble free) and wirelessly for 4 years.

I have also ripped CDs using the laptop's own software WAV into Windows Media Player, went out and bought some blank CDs and burnt now copies just because I could and it was new to do. Again, I found this so easy to do, with no help from anybody. The only time I have had real difficulties in using a PC is now, hence this thread and it does not seem to be abating in getting not any easier. Ho hum...

I have made the mistake into thinking that I just plug everything in (as described above) a couple of clicks and then i'm off. I would never of dreamed for one minute that I would of found it this difficult. I am none the wiser, in fact i'm even more confused now than ever. The only thing I have found simple is using dBpoweramp.

I've been following your 'New Adventures in Hi-Fi' (it's an album by REM!) with interest Stephen. I feel some of your pain. Several years ago I dabbled with using a MacMini as a streaming source (with a good DAC) and it was the most frustrating couple of weeks I have ever experienced in my nigh on fifty year hi-fi habit.

Reading of your frustrations, the phrase uttered by an audiophile friend of mine kept ringing in my ears:-

'It should not be this complicated to enjoy some music at home'.

It seems that there are many happy advocates and adopters of streaming rigs, and one is inclined to wonder if The Computers Gods are simply agin some of us?

Now don't get me wrong - this is not a computer free house - I have a full set of Apple i-Thingies and I love 'em all. But; if the internet or an email server is down, it doesn't really bother me - I can still play and enjoy my music. Listening to music is all about passion and engagement. I imagine that if I had a streaming rig which decided to have a wobble when I wanted to listen to some music; one or more of the pertinent boxes might just end up adorning the patio from an upstairs window.

I remain 100% content with a CD player and a turntable. I love the simplicity and sound of both sources. Many contributors here seem to be very happy with their streaming rigs and that's great. In life we learn to be wary of the power of marketing, urging us to change to what is hip/cool/fab/fashionable. Just because everyone else is (allegedly) doing it.

Henry David Thoreau put it well:-

“If a man loses pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him step to the music which he hears, however measured, or far away.”

Nicely apposite eh?

So good luck Stephen. Perhaps with the help of HH and other knowledgeable people on the forum, you will get there with streaming. But if not, just revert back to that with which you were happy and content.

John.

J.N. posted:

I've been following your 'New Adventures in Hi-Fi' (it's an album by REM!) with interest Stephen. I feel some of your pain. Several years ago I dabbled with using a MacMini as a streaming source (with a good DAC) and it was the most frustrating couple of weeks I have ever experienced in my nigh on fifty year hi-fi habit.

Reading of your frustrations, the phrase uttered by an audiophile friend of mine kept ringing in my ears:-

'It should not be this complicated to enjoy some music at home'.

It seems that there are many happy advocates and adopters of streaming rigs, and one is inclined to wonder if The Computers Gods are simply agin some of us?

Now don't get me wrong - this is not a computer free house - I have a full set of Apple i-Thingies and I love 'em all. But; if the internet or an email server is down, it doesn't really bother me - I can still play and enjoy my music. Listening to music is all about passion and engagement. I imagine that if I had a streaming rig which decided to have a wobble when I wanted to listen to some music; one or more of the pertinent boxes might just end up adorning the patio from an upstairs window.

I remain 100% content with a CD player and a turntable. I love the simplicity and sound of both sources. Many contributors here seem to be very happy with their streaming rigs and that's great. In life we learn to be wary of the power of marketing, urging us to change to what is hip/cool/fab/fashionable. Just because everyone else is (allegedly) doing it.

Henry David Thoreau put it well:-

“If a man loses pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him step to the music which he hears, however measured, or far away.”

Nicely apposite eh?

So good luck Stephen. Perhaps with the help of HH and other knowledgeable people on the forum, you will get there with streaming. But if not, just revert back to that with which you were happy and content.

John.

Thank you for your kind words John. I really hear where you are coming from. Indeed I don't think I have ever taken so many deep breaths and counts to ten with a "positive self talk" said out load to oneself.

A brilliant quote there too, really made my day that has., 

Cheers!

French Rooster posted:

i am following Stephen since the beginning of the thread and it reminds me my same past problems.

I think that Stephen had done now the most difficult and he is very near the end of difficulties.

Without the streamer at home, it is also more complicated and funny.

Thanks FR, I sure am banking on you being right, in it being complicated & funny at the same time! 

Stephen Tate posted:
French Rooster posted:

i am following Stephen since the beginning of the thread and it reminds me my same past problems.

I think that Stephen had done now the most difficult and he is very near the end of difficulties.

Without the streamer at home, it is also more complicated and funny.

Thanks FR, I sure am banking on you being right, in it being complicated & funny at the same time! 

i wanted to say «  without the streamer at home it is more complicated and less funny « .   I am sure all will be finally all right.    When HH will come, take a video of what he will say and show, it will help you after.

Stephen, I would suggest that when HH visits you, you take notes and save some screenshots of the key stages as a reminder. Later you can then replicate what HH has shown you and use the screenshots as a guide. It is so easy to 'see' when someone else shows you but the second they have gone you can easily get lost again unless you have some record of things.

I hope you make it Stephen and start to enjoy streaming. Once you have cracked it, streaming the most convenient of ways to store, browse and listen to music. Just need to set things up first.

What a gent HH is to help you out. Hats off to you Nigel.

Hang on a minute here guys, let's not get too carried away here, I don't even have the streamer yet and I have managed to get the laptop & NAS back to some sort of normality. I too think that it is so kind for HH's offer to visit and help set me up. One thing at a time. I am now getting used to using the NetBac replicator app that Fatcat suggested using earlier in this thread. It doesn't seem too difficult to understand so I am managing to get by using it at this moment.

Thanks all

Mmm...I still keep looking at the Innuos Zen STD MK2 (online). 

I don't even bother switching my Qnap on now, I just can't be bothered with it. I just have it sitting there gathering dust. My momentum seems to have gone, I'm hoping my enthusiasm for it will return...

I haven't even peeled off the packing tape from the facia of the Qnap that covers it's buttons and USB socket.

Stephen, you won't see or should I say hear the benefits of all of your frustration and hard work until you get your Streamer then it will all come together.

Like yourself I struggled with the PC and NAS side of things but with help from ex work collegues my local PC shop  and my local Naim dealer in particular I got there in the end.

When my dealer installed my new system just over three years ago he installed dBpoweramp  ripping directly into my NAS with a external drive attached to carry out the back ups automatically this I found was the easiest set up for me.

Hope you get it sorted.

 

 

Stephen Tate posted:

Mmm...I still keep looking at the Innuos Zen STD MK2 (online). 

I don't even bother switching my Qnap on now, I just can't be bothered with it. I just have it sitting there gathering dust. My momentum seems to have gone, I'm hoping my enthusiasm for it will return...

I haven't even peeled off the packing tape from the facia of the Qnap that covers it's buttons and USB socket.

Hang in there Stephen! You will eventually manage the QNAP — have Hungrihalibut over for a nice meal, and on the side he will quickly teach you how to manage the QNAP. Having somebody with you in front of the screen will make things so much easier! And then you are ready for the ND5XS2.  

And any left-over monies you spend on Naim Allae — rather than Innuos. 

Pcd posted:

When my dealer installed my new system just over three years ago he installed dBpoweramp  ripping directly into my NAS with a external drive attached to carry out the back ups automatically this I found was the easiest set up for me.

Hope you get it sorted.

 

 

Wow, that sounds promising Pcd, ripping straight to NAS sounds like a good approach to me. In fact i'm going to try and do just that, see if I can do it. You have just given me an idea, thanks!

nigelb posted:
Stephen Tate posted:

I have just successfully ripped a CD by - Blind Willie McTell  - Atlanta Strut - directly into the Qnap with no dramas. Blimey...

Time to peel the packing tape off the QNAP, Stephen.

And open a new box of teabags

Hi guys,

I have been listening to my music collection today that I've ripped with (FLAC) using dBpoweramp via into my laptop. I am now replaying my music back using the Windows 10 app that came installed with W10 - Groove Music - from the laptop. My laptop then feeds my Arcam irDAC with a JitterBug and Chord SilverPlus usb cable which then goes on to feed my NAIT5si amp via a pair of Chord VEE3 Cobra RCA > RCA interconnect leads.

I have to say that it all sounds quite enjoyable and bouncy if a little soft and puffy.

Can I expect with the addition of a Naim network player with QNAP to be a significant upgrade to the above?

What do you think in terms of what a Naim streamer does in a performance uplift compared to a laptop using Windows 10?

What I'm trying to say here is that some posters have had Naim streamers in the past and then went on to find other solutions with a positive outcome.? Why?

I'm just curious...

Compared to you current situation, I think a Naim network player would give a notable uplift in SQ.  Using the Groove Music app, you're in lifestyle territory, and sound quality for such a piece of software is not a major consideration, though it will unlikely be offensive.  The software you use to render your audio on a PC can make quite a difference to SQ though, and I believe careful choices and configuration, can narrow the gap between a PC transport and something like a Naim network player, though that is assuming that the DAC in the chain is the same, which in your situation would not make sense.  

Some software available for Windows allows you to bypass the Windows mixer, which effectively up, or down, samples everything to the same standard across all applications regardless of source bit-depth and sample rate.  In theory, if your control panel settings match the bit-depth and sample rate of the source, and the volume control in windows is at max, the signal to the DAC should be bit-perfect, but tests I've done with various software show that not always to be true, because some implement software DSPs and EQ effects etc.  When using quality hi-fi components with a PC, you're much better off leaving the digital signal unmolested, and leave the DSP work to the likes of Naim or whoever.  

In short your PC could sound better than it does right now most likely, but I really couldn't say how close it is to a dedicated network streamer from experience.

 

Add Reply

Likes (0)
×
×
×
×