Qobuz 24bit Sublime+ coming in May

Looks like Qobuz will introduce a Sublime+ subscription in May 2017 which will allow streaming of approx. 60,000 albums in hi-res 24bit (not just albums purchased as with Sublime) . Since their takeover they seem to have stabilised and grown, expanding into more European countries with others planned.

Is this enough for Naim to finally consider supporting Qobuz? I am fed up with erratic 16bit Tidal and poor quality mp3 on Spotify and these offerings do not offer the best quality to match Naim's superb equipment.

I for one want the best quality and 24bit to me is a class apart. Not supporting Qobuz is now seriously undermining my faith in Naim and I've been a Naim advocate since 1985. I'm constantly told that I should consider Aurender but my loyalty is still holding firm.

 

Original Post

It would have been easy for Naim to implement support for internet streaming services (Tidal, Qobuz, etc.) in their new Uniti server architecture but regrettably they have decided not to do so. Implementing support for Qobuz in Naim streamers will be a pain as it has been for Tidal. If you want to enjoy internet streaming services without compromising your loyalty with Naim, perhaps a Raspberry Pi with a Hifiberry hat would be a sensible choice. Have a look at  https://community.roonlabs.com/t/roon-bridge-for-arm-a-beginner-s-guide-to-raspberry-pi-and-cubox-i/10138, https://www.lesbonscomptes.com/upmpdcli/ and http://minimserver.com/.

Claus-Thoegersen posted:

What about the markets they serve. They never managed to get to Denmark, just to name one  country that they  planned to open the service in, but the plan was just that. For Naim to support a service directly it needs to be available in most parts of the world. 

Claus

I am not sure that Tidal is available in most parts of the world but Naim seem to have made quite a lot of efforts for supporting Tidal, apparently with results that have not been fully convincing. Should Tidal loose popularity -- no matter for what reasons -- these efforts would become partly worthless. The most obvious approach for avoiding potentially worthless efforts and for limiting risks would have been to make internet streaming services available through Naim servers via well established, open source solutions. This would also have been a more user-friendly approach, it seems to me. Just my two cents, of course.

Thx for the interest. The hint that Qobuz has limited market availability made me take a closer look.  Certainly a surprise to me is that Qobuz is only available in 9 European countries with Spain, Italy & Poland being added to make 12 in summer 2017. Tidal has global reach in 52 countries currently, the most significant to me is the good old USA, available on Tidal but not Qobuz.

I can see  from a pure marketing perspective why Naim are shy of taking Qobuz on board but they have a 30+ year history with me of providing the ultimate solutions for my enjoyment at a not inconsiderable expense and not being that worried about being mainstream (eg I don't see AM on my old NAT01 tuner!) . I don't want to listen to muffled, intermittently streamed Tidal at £20 per month and rubbish quality mp3 on Spotify at £10 per month when a stunning streamed 24bit alternative on Qobuz (albeit at around £350pa) is around the corner.

I really do not want to stick a raspberry PI on the front end of this kit to overcome the issue, call me a snob but I just can't bring myself to do it. I have a Logitech Squeezebox  touch (currently retired but working as a lovely digital clock) which could assume the role having a Qobuz app installed and 24/192 capable but I had invested a significant sum, with a plan to continue the investment, in Naim equipment that now no longer meets my needs 100%.

The Aurender N10 is now on the audition list, something I would have never considered before but is looking at a more agreeable alternative for me to the NDS/555 for 2017

Claptonuk - get that Squeezebox Touch wired up! You might want to download the EDO app too. If you have an iPad or iPhone the iPeng app is a fantastic remote control app for yr Touch. Then you can get a free trial of Qobuz and just see how you get on. When the hires streaming becomes available you'll know which way you want to go. 

 

Hi, you may have a point.  Maybe I should just fireup the Touch. It is connected to an ndac, just not used (only as a clock) currently.  It has Qobuz installed (sublime subs) and was used before I invested in a Naim streamer + ps which I hoped would be in my setup for 5yrs before upgrading.  It does seem daft though that my "upgrade path" now involves downgrading my streamer to one 10% of the price or less, to gain access to a library of 24 bit high quality music with Sublime+

On the subject of upgrades, I'm certain Naim won't move to support Qobuz directly so........has anyone compared the sound quality on an Aurender product streaming Qobuz to a Squeezebox, Chromecast or Pi streaming same?

docbot posted:

Won't the new unity range support Chromecast?  If that is the case then inbuilt QOBUZ support is not required, just cast from the QOBUZ app on the tablet - all sorted, or am I missing something?

It will, but that doesn't help if you have a current product, such as the NDS. 

Claptonuk,

'....I really do not want to stick a raspberry PI on the front end of this kit to overcome the issue...'

I moved LMS off my NAS and onto a Raspberry Pi 3 with piCore, and use the Quboz plugin. Initially I used a RP SMPS, then an IFI 5v iPower, finally an R-Core TeraDak DC-30W LPSU. This was an excellent move, and gives me the best sound quality I have achieved from Q. I think that the RP makes an excellent, simple, one function computer.

Cheap experiment, and I suspect you will be very pleasantly surprised.

M

claptonuk posted:

...

On the subject of upgrades, I'm certain Naim won't move to support Qobuz directly so........has anyone compared the sound quality on an Aurender product streaming Qobuz to a Squeezebox, Chromecast or Pi streaming same?

I very much doubt that you will find detailed comparisons. Also it is not very clear to me what it means comparing these solutions. The N10 has a BNC SPDIF output on board. This could be directly connected to your Naim DAC or NDS (I have not fully understood what is your current system). The Pi would need to be equipped with a HIFIBerry Digi+ Pro or with a USB->SPDIF converter to feed the Naim DAC or the NDS via BNC. I do not know about the Squeezebox.

Why don't you start connecting the Squeezebox as Likesmusic suggests? This would give you a starting point and a baseline to compare other solutions. You could then demo an N10 or setup a Pi and compare them to the Squeezebox.

As M suggests, you should not discard the Pi from the outset. I have been looking for a server with excellent SPDIF output for my Naim DAC for quite a while and I really would have liked to buy a Naim or a Melco or a Bryston. But all these devices turned out to be disappointing in one way or another: poor technical specifications, lack of support for essential data transfer protocols and functionalities, lack of interoperability, poor proprietary software, lack of customizability ... the Core was just another example of a device that could have been great in principle but is in fact disappointing, essentially because of conscious design choices.

NBPF

Really appreciate the response, certainly gives me hope, a splash of honest opinion and the guidelines for a bit of research. I had a pi kit on my Amazon wish list so it is now in my basket and I can play at the weekend.

I've also been kindly offered the loan of an Aurender with a chord usb dac which I gratefully accepted for next week.

system btw is (streaming source only):

NDX/nDac/xps/252/scapdr/135s/briks

claptonuk posted:

NBPF

Really appreciate the response, certainly gives me hope, a splash of honest opinion and the guidelines for a bit of research. I had a pi kit on my Amazon wish list so it is now in my basket and I can play at the weekend.

I've also been kindly offered the loan of an Aurender with a chord usb dac which I gratefully accepted for next week.

system btw is (streaming source only):

NDX/nDac/xps/252/scapdr/135s/briks

Great, thanks for the clarification! The NDX+nDAC combination is probably a very good point of reference. If you find that feeding your nDAC with the Pi or with the Aurender gives significantly different results, please let us know. I have been using a FitPC3 (a small, fanless microserver that comes in a black die-cast aluminium case) with a USB to SPDIF bridge for a few years but never managed to make a direct comparison with a NDX. Best, nbpf

claptonuk posted:

Looks like Qobuz will introduce a Sublime+ subscription in May 2017 which will allow streaming of approx. 60,000 albums in hi-res 24bit (not just albums purchased as with Sublime) . Since their takeover they seem to have stabilised and grown, expanding into more European countries with others planned.

Is this enough for Naim to finally consider supporting Qobuz? I am fed up with erratic 16bit Tidal and poor quality mp3 on Spotify and these offerings do not offer the best quality to match Naim's superb equipment.

I for one want the best quality and 24bit to me is a class apart. Not supporting Qobuz is now seriously undermining my faith in Naim and I've been a Naim advocate since 1985. I'm constantly told that I should consider Aurender but my loyalty is still holding firm.

 

Claptonux,

Naim may not have a direct support for Qobuz , but it is quite easy to enable it with the current range of streamers. No need to buy an aurender or use a pi or similar device

the only thing you need is a Android device ( smartphone or tablet), and of course a Qobuz subscription. On the android device , install the application bubbleupnp. I won't add the link but google it , it should get you there straight.

This app supports qobuz and can control partially a naim streamer, you should be able to play /stop/pause songs and playlists from Qobuz.
the only thing it is not supporting is volume control.

It is what i have been using for two years on my nd5xs. I'm suprised it was not mentionned in that thread

Claptonuk,
you can buy an android tablet for a few tens of pounds, it is way cheaper than most of the things we are discussing on this forum.

Chag,
I remember you asking that same question elsewhere in a different language. I hope an answer written in english will convince you this time . With Bubbleupnp, the streamer is your nds, with the chomecast it is only acting as a dac.
So unless you are doubting that nds is a better streamer than the chromecast audio, you will achieve a better SQ with Bubbleupnp.

Goon525 posted:

Meanwhile, has anyone heard any more details about Qobuz Sublime Plus?

i've listen to 24/96 streaming at one retailer shop as they can take advantage of being tester of this  offer since few weeks.
the listening was as good as it is with a NAS.

i can add that one other exiting thing is that Qobuz plan to offer DSD in September

Chag... posted:

And question may still remain to hear whether BubbleUPnP has greater SQ with Qobuz than ChromeCast Audio or not.

Chag -

I have have not tried casting but I have installed the Qobuz interface of upmpdcli and replay of CD quality contents through the Naim DAC via Linn Kazoo as control point works fine. The search function of the upmpdcli interface appears to be broken, however.

Just looking at this, got email saying the same. I was on their beta for the Apps and a new iOS App is coming soon. I had a Sublime sub for 1 year but felt I wasn't getting enough out of it as the 24bit streaming could only be done from purchased music, perhaps this is now making the step to 24bit streaming of their entire catalogue? Seems that way.

Dan43 posted:

Just looking at this, got email saying the same. I was on their beta for the Apps and a new iOS App is coming soon. I had a Sublime sub for 1 year but felt I wasn't getting enough out of it as the 24bit streaming could only be done from purchased music, perhaps this is now making the step to 24bit streaming of their entire catalogue? Seems that way.

Its "only" streaming of about 90% of their current Hi Res catalogue, which is 70,000 titles, but still very worthwhile. I have been very pleased with my Qobuz subscription.

likesmusic posted:
Dan43 posted:

Just looking at this, got email saying the same. I was on their beta for the Apps and a new iOS App is coming soon. I had a Sublime sub for 1 year but felt I wasn't getting enough out of it as the 24bit streaming could only be done from purchased music, perhaps this is now making the step to 24bit streaming of their entire catalogue? Seems that way.

Its "only" streaming of about 90% of their current Hi Res catalogue, which is 70,000 titles, but still very worthwhile. I have been very pleased with my Qobuz subscription.

90% sounds like a lot, but that's only 90% of what they already have available in Hi-res, not 90% of their entire catalogue that is available in 16 bit.

claptonuk posted:

No special offer for existing loyal subscribers though!

Definately ditching the NDX/nDAC now this is released - lack of hidef support. . It is Aurender for me going forward now i'm sad to say.

Am I missing a trick here? I'm streaming Qobuz to an NDX using Kazoo. Would there be a problem there with hi-res streaming?

Curious that all the test tracks on the Sublime+ playlist are 24 bit but not any higher than 44.1kHz sampling. Why would they do this? Mohamed, since you've paid up, can you confirm that this doesn't apply to other stuff? I agree the Playlist sounds good.

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