Streaming set up for around 1200 Euro

njprrogers

Well-known member
Aug 12, 2015
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10
10,545
Hi,

So I would like to spend around 1000 GBP / 1200 euro on a hi-fi set up. It's for a room about 12 feet wide and 28 feet long.

I have, through convenience (laziness) been listening to all my music through Spotify premium these days although I do have a NAS drive with some high res FLAC's. I like a mix of music, folk, electronica, disco, reggae.

My instinct is to look at an integrated amplifier with streaming capabilities. I like the sound of the CXA61 but unfortunately the lack of streaming would probably require me to purchase another box and hit the budget.

I also like the look of the Audiolab 6000A Play, it gives me the streaming and what seems to be a well regarded amp.

Would love to get some recommendations on what speakers to pair it with. Currently the B and W 606 series 1 can be got for 329 GBP / 349 euro on sale which seems attractive but some of the reviews for the series 2 seem to look back on that speaker less fondly than it was reviewed at the time. (Again my instinct is to buy the latest streamer where the tech is moving quickly and I am open to older speakers where improvements are probably more incremental in the last few years).

Thanks!
 

manicm

Well-known member
May 1, 2008
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Bluesound Powernode 2i and B&W 606 S2. Job done. Combo is slightly above your budget, but a good haggling might solve that.

Does not seem to do DSD though.
 
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njprrogers

Well-known member
Aug 12, 2015
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I initially considered the Powernode but some of the reviews put me off a little.

Unfortunately, the inability to listen in a shop these days is not helping.

My thoughts were that the Audiolab or CX might have a superior DAC as well, I have seen some criticism of the Bluesound DAC as lacking a little.

I currently have a Marantz NA6005 streamer, Cambridge Audio Azur 640A amp (about 15 years old!) and B&W 685 series 2 speakers in my main room.

Would love to hear alternative suggestions on Amp / Speaker combos. I'd consider 2nd hand as well.
 

nopiano

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Feb 15, 2009
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The Audiolab would be ok if it didn’t use PlayFi. Unfortunately, for me, it’s inability to stream gaplessly rules it out.
I would second the Powernode recommendation above. Or given your current speakers and amp, maybe the Marantz PM 7000?
 
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daveh75

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Jul 31, 2008
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How about the Yamaha WXA-50?


Its a well spec'd competent little unit for the money

 
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rainsoothe

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Apr 30, 2012
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Hi. Unless you just wanna declutter, I'd keep the streaming side separated from the analogue side, since streaming is ever changing. From my perspective, the amp is the weakest link atm, and I'd get that sorted. If you like the CXA61, just go for it and be happy (try to audition in your own room and setup just to be sure). Replace the Marantz streamer at a later date, when funds allow, with a CA CXN v2 (or Bluesound Node 2i if you want a better user interface, and run that through the CXA dac). Rega Brio is also a killer amp, and it's a great match for B&W speakers if you wanna stay with the brand and go for one of their newer models at some point. Quad Vena 2 and Cyrus One HD are also worth serious consideration.

Come to think of it, @Al ears linked a Quad Vena 2 + Quad S1 amp + speakers package that was exactly 1000 pounds - should definitely be on your audition list.
 

njprrogers

Well-known member
Aug 12, 2015
44
10
10,545
Thanks for all the feedback.

Think you've hit the nail on the head there in terms of streaming and amplification. The streaming stuff is still moving so fast it might be a better idea to split the work load. That gives me an option to get a nice amp and speakers and cheaper streaming option with a view to upgrading as things develop.

I like what I read about the CX series. Unfortunately demos are difficult at the moment.

I'll have a read about the rega brio too. I've enjoyed the 685 s2's so sticking with b and w probably makes sense.

The Yamaha wxa-50 seems interesting based on the review but I'd be wary of a five year old streaming product. The wxad10 seems the cheapest step into a streaming separate and I would definitely consider it as part of the mix if I prioritise amp and speakers first with a view to a future upgrade.
 
D

Deleted member 116933

Guest
Hi,

So I would like to spend around 1000 GBP / 1200 euro on a hi-fi set up. It's for a room about 12 feet wide and 28 feet long.

I have, through convenience (laziness) been listening to all my music through Spotify premium these days although I do have a NAS drive with some high res FLAC's. I like a mix of music, folk, electronica, disco, reggae.

My instinct is to look at an integrated amplifier with streaming capabilities. I like the sound of the CXA61 but unfortunately the lack of streaming would probably require me to purchase another box and hit the budget.

I also like the look of the Audiolab 6000A Play, it gives me the streaming and what seems to be a well regarded amp.

Would love to get some recommendations on what speakers to pair it with. Currently the B and W 606 series 1 can be got for 329 GBP / 349 euro on sale which seems attractive but some of the reviews for the series 2 seem to look back on that speaker less fondly than it was reviewed at the time. (Again my instinct is to buy the latest streamer where the tech is moving quickly and I am open to older speakers where improvements are probably more incremental in the last few years).

Thanks!
Think this would work leaving budget for some speaker stands.

 

manicm

Well-known member
May 1, 2008
1,108
274
19,570
I initially considered the Powernode but some of the reviews put me off a little.

Unfortunately, the inability to listen in a shop these days is not helping.

My thoughts were that the Audiolab or CX might have a superior DAC as well, I have seen some criticism of the Bluesound DAC as lacking a little.

I currently have a Marantz NA6005 streamer, Cambridge Audio Azur 640A amp (about 15 years old!) and B&W 685 series 2 speakers in my main room.

Would love to hear alternative suggestions on Amp / Speaker combos. I'd consider 2nd hand as well.
I’d keep your amp and speakers if I were you. Your streamer is the weakest link there. I would look into the CXN v2 - it has/will get Tidal Connect. It won't support MQA though, and has only limited DSD support.
 

njprrogers

Well-known member
Aug 12, 2015
44
10
10,545
Just to clarify, I am keeping all of it :) I am looking for advice around a 2nd hifi setup in a different room... will probably be using spotify connect to play some tunes and am leaning towards the B and W 606 series 1 which can be got at a very reasonable 350 euro at the moment.

Just leaves me to match a nice streamer + amp or all in one!
 

Konchog

Well-known member
Sep 7, 2020
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0
520
I’d keep your amp and speakers if I were you. Your streamer is the weakest link there. I would look into the CXN v2 - it has/will get Tidal Connect. It won't support MQA though, and has only limited DSD support.
While I like the CXN v2, I hate to say that the CXA (despite belonging to the same range, and sharing a remote) are incompatible.

The problem is that the volume control of the remote will affect both the Pre-Amp on the CXNv2 as well as the volume of the amplifier. Therefore, if you are intending on using the remote control, you will need to turn off the pre-amp settings on your CXNv2, but if you turn off the pre-amp you will have no (literally zero) ability to modify volume via any connected apps such as Airplay. StreamMagic may have very limited volume control, if you are lucky.

Despite the fact that the manual (Page 11 CXA61/81, third paragraph) suggests that the control bus will allow you to use apps to control the CXA61, this is apparently not true. The engineers have confirmed in writing that there is no ability for the CX series of amplifiers to respond to volume control via the control bus.

So, if you are looking for a device which is multi-room, network ready - you may wish to look elsewhere. If you are looking for an amplifier to go with your CXNv2, you may wish to look elsewhere (probably just buy a power amp and let the CXNv2 pre-amp handle volume).
 
Hi. Unless you just wanna declutter, I'd keep the streaming side separated from the analogue side, since streaming is ever changing. From my perspective, the amp is the weakest link atm, and I'd get that sorted. If you like the CXA61, just go for it and be happy (try to audition in your own room and setup just to be sure). Replace the Marantz streamer at a later date, when funds allow, with a CA CXN v2 (or Bluesound Node 2i if you want a better user interface, and run that through the CXA dac). Rega Brio is also a killer amp, and it's a great match for B&W speakers if you wanna stay with the brand and go for one of their newer models at some point. Quad Vena 2 and Cyrus One HD are also worth serious consideration.

Come to think of it, @Al ears linked a Quad Vena 2 + Quad S1 amp + speakers package that was exactly 1000 pounds - should definitely be on your audition list.
The Quad Vena 2 isn't a streaming amp , it's the Vena 2 Play that that does that. Even so he wouldn't get my suggested system for 1200Euros (it was £999)
Now if OK had 1650Euros I would suggest this:-
 

rainsoothe

Well-known member
Apr 30, 2012
750
335
19,270
The Quad Vena 2 isn't a streaming amp , it's the Vena 2 Play that that does that. Even so he wouldn't get my suggested system for 1200Euros (it was £999)
Now if OK had 1650Euros I would suggest this:-
this thread has been necroed from january, though :)
 

rainsoothe

Well-known member
Apr 30, 2012
750
335
19,270
While I like the CXN v2, I hate to say that the CXA (despite belonging to the same range, and sharing a remote) are incompatible.

The problem is that the volume control of the remote will affect both the Pre-Amp on the CXNv2 as well as the volume of the amplifier. Therefore, if you are intending on using the remote control, you will need to turn off the pre-amp settings on your CXNv2, but if you turn off the pre-amp you will have no (literally zero) ability to modify volume via any connected apps such as Airplay. StreamMagic may have very limited volume control, if you are lucky.

Despite the fact that the manual (Page 11 CXA61/81, third paragraph) suggests that the control bus will allow you to use apps to control the CXA61, this is apparently not true. The engineers have confirmed in writing that there is no ability for the CX series of amplifiers to respond to volume control via the control bus.

So, if you are looking for a device which is multi-room, network ready - you may wish to look elsewhere. If you are looking for an amplifier to go with your CXNv2, you may wish to look elsewhere (probably just buy a power amp and let the CXNv2 pre-amp handle volume).
you can use the CXN v2 without the preamp function activated, so it can work as a source only. So you CAN use it with a CXA, if what you're saying is true, it only means you can't control the volume from app properly.
 

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