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Music server

admin_exported

New member
Aug 10, 2019
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I hope I'm not in the wrong section. I have been considering the AVA RS3 music server but am unsure as to the quality of sound reproduction I will get and the best interface to my HiFi.

Has anyone got one of these devices in a genuine HiFi system and what is your opinion of it.
 
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Anonymous

Guest
Hi phil12, I have none of the components you mention, but if you want to get a genuine hi-end sound you'll have to invest in a decent DAC.

I have listened to both the DacMagic and Benchmark USB DACs via their coax connections. Both, to my ears, are eclipsed by the Bryston BDA1 (as you'd expect with the price differentail), which is what I have now. The sound is stunning. I'm not good with superlatives so I'll leave it there.

(I use a Clearer Audio Silverline coax to connect my SqueezeBox to the DAC - it's a great sounding cable. Warmish yet with lots of detail.)
 

The_Lhc

New member
Oct 16, 2008
1,175
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oldgringo: Hi phil12, I have none of the components you mention, but if you want to get a genuine hi-end sound you'll have to invest in a decent DAC.

More than that, the AVA is not a streaming device, it's simply a NAS box (with ripping functionality) that can run several different options for server software. You'll still need a streaming device to pull the data off the AVA and convert it to audio (either directly or via a DAC).

What this means is that the AVA doesn't "sound" like anything, it doesn't output audio, just data. The sound quality will depend entirely on your streaming device and DAC.
 
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Anonymous

Guest
oldgringo:
Hi phil12, I have none of the components you mention, but if you want to get a genuine hi-end sound you'll have to invest in a decent DAC.

I have listened to both the DacMagic and Benchmark USB DACs via their coax connections. Both, to my ears, are eclipsed by the Bryston BDA1 (as you'd expect with the price differentail), which is what I have now. The sound is stunning. I'm not good with superlatives so I'll leave it there.

(I use a Clearer Audio Silverline coax to connect my SqueezeBox to the DAC - it's a great sounding cable. Warmish yet with lots of detail.)

oldgringo, I would be grateful for your best description of the DAC Magic vs. the Bryston BDA-1. I haven't been able to audition the BDA-1 yet because PMC who distribute Bryston are a bunch of unbelievably useless people and they can't get it to the retailer of my choice. So until i do get to hear it myself, could you give me a flavor of what the BDA-1 sound like compared to the DAC Magic? I take it you think the difference is worth the £2k difference in price?
 
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Anonymous

Guest
debt_collector - glad to offer my opinion - your last question is the simplest - is it worth the extra £2K? It's worth the extra outlay in much the same way as spending an extra 2K on say an amp or speakers is ;-)

In terms of the improvement in the sound - the bass, oh the bass! It's much deeper, richer and far better controlled. I would say it's tonally neutral compared to the Cambridge which sounded 'thin' in comparison. As I mentioned, I'm not good at superlatives and nor at articulating the differences in sound. The best I can say is that I no longer feel as though the sound is being compromised in any from not being sourced from a CD transport, whereas I did feel that from the Cambridge.

Going back to the AVA set up for a moment, another option, and one which I have, is to use a simple PC running Win2K or XP as well as music server (I'm running SqueezeServer). Streaming audio files doesn't take much oomph or RAM so an old PC will be more than adequate. Plug in a wireless USB adapter at one end and a SqueezeBox at the other, and you're off! And if you have the know-how, it doesn't take much to get a Raid 1 configuration working (and in fact some of more modern PCs that use the Intel chip set, have a raid controller built in, which makes the process even simpler).
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
oldgringo:
debt_collector - glad to offer my opinion - your last question is the simplest - is it worth the extra £2K? It's worth the extra outlay in much the same way as spending an extra 2K on say an amp or speakers is ;-)

In terms of the improvement in the sound - the bass, oh the bass! It's much deeper, richer and far better controlled. I would say it's tonally neutral compared to the Cambridge which sounded 'thin' in comparison. As I mentioned, I'm not good at superlatives and nor at articulating the differences in sound. The best I can say is that I no longer feel as though the sound is being compromised in any from not being sourced from a CD transport, whereas I did feel that from the Cambridge.

Going back to the AVA set up for a moment, another option, and one which I have, is to use a simple PC running Win2K or XP as well as music server (I'm running SqueezeServer). Streaming audio files doesn't take much oomph or RAM so an old PC will be more than adequate. Plug in a wireless USB adapter at one end and a SqueezeBox at the other, and you're off! And if you have the know-how, it doesn't take much to get a Raid 1 configuration working (and in fact some of more modern PCs that use the Intel chip set, have a raid controller built in, which makes the process even simpler).

Thanks for responding. As you can see from my set-up, I am a keen Bryston fan. Can I ask what amplifier you are using? I ask because DAC Magic sounded quite full bodied through my Bryston and the bass was fairly deep. But I am curious to hear how the BDA-1 sound in comparison following your post. I've been trying to arrange a demo to listen to the BDA-1 but for some reason, PMC who distribute Bryston can't get their act together and get a demo unit to a dealer near me (in London). Ah well, must be patient...
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
Hi debt_collector - I have a Moon I3.3 which is still being run in. I've not heard any Bryston amplicafication but you'd like to think their components would work well together.

Best of luck getting your hands on the Bryston dac.
 

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