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Music Server vs Mac Mini or PC


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Anyone here own an Aurender or Lumin or something similar as a music server vs a PC or Mac. I use a mac mini and lately my mind has been infected with the thoughts of the Aurender N100 anyone else go that route or hear comparisons? 

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I have a MacMini which is used as a music server to my Yggy, and someone I know also has a MacMini which he also users as a music server, however I believe he's ordered an external power supply to use with his MacMini, and has said he'll let me know the result.

Edited by Dave R
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thanks I just ran this script for OS X and it absolutely improves the sound quality. It reduces the overall functionality of the mini I am using like disabling safari but there is also a restore script for times I want all the processes it turns off to be back on. http://www.computeraudiodesign.com/osx-audio-optimization/

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It's amazing what differences some things make.  There's a guy in Switzerland who recommends Windows Server 2012 R2 and makes some optimization SW for that (and other OS versions, FWIW) as well.  You can run it in "core" mode and have many things disabled.  People have similar reactions to JP#'s....

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I thought about going with Win Server 2012 with all the requisite software and hardware, but in the end, this sort of thing defeats the main reason I went into computer audio, ease of use!  The ability to instantly find and play tracks from thousands of tracks, while building convenient playlists is why I went with computer audio, but all these "cutting-edge" solutions have horrible ergonomics, often worse than spinning the physical CD's :(

 

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Jon right there with you, I just am about through with amara at this point as the tidal plater 2.0 crashes each and every time I open it and symphony 3.0 takes for ever to load a cd. It's just not worth it, now audirvana seems to be rock solid stable and sounds great. Not the best GUI but serviceable for my use, I really wish Roon was so ungodly expensive and had a better playback engine as the GUI and library/tidal integration is second to none. 

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I have been impressed with it, having played with the multichannel demo from Dirac. Makes the cheap-o speakers in my HT room sound pretty decent IMHO. Mini-DSP also make a couple boxes that use Dirac. 

Might be worth ordering a UMK-1 and putting the demo on your Mac-mini to see what it can do. The UMK-1 can also be used with most measurement software so it should not be a loss if you ever plan on doing computer based measurements. 

Really wish I had the coin for a Datasat RS20i. 

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5 hours ago, jp11801 said:

Jon right there with you, I just am about through with amara at this point as the tidal plater 2.0 crashes each and every time I open it and symphony 3.0 takes for ever to load a cd. It's just not worth it, now audirvana seems to be rock solid stable and sounds great. Not the best GUI but serviceable for my use, I really wish Roon was so ungodly expensive and had a better playback engine as the GUI and library/tidal integration is second to none. 

Amarra 2.6 still works great for me on Yosemite 10.10.5 and iTunes 12.3.0.44 so I've been loathe to upgrade any of those.

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On 16 Jan 2016 at 9:24 AM, Dave R said:

I have a MacMini which is used as a music server to my Yggy, and a friend has a MacMini which he also users as a music server, however I believe he's ordered an external power supply to use with his MacMini, and has said he'll let me know the result, but I'll ask him if he'll post his findings on this thread as-well.

Yes, that me. I have an incoming HDPlex power supply for my Mac Mini which needs 12V DC (6 amps max at boot up). I also have the Uptone Audio MMC kit to allow me to remove the AC supply in the Mini. I will post back here in a week or so once it has been evaluated. Right now using Audirvana+ 2.2 it is definitely better than my old CEC CDP. I am also using the TotalDAC USB cable/filter box, which cleaned up the highs and made the sound move closer to realism to me, i.e. less digital. At 330 Euros I would recommend that based on my findings. I have an M2Tech EVO full stack so the USB is already quite isolated from my DAC input, but the TotalDAC still made a big difference. I would guess in DAC with USB input direct, it could be an even bigger clean up. 

 

 

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Edited by astrostar59
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  • 4 weeks later...

I love the Melco NA1 both from a sound perspective as well as a playback function. Once it is set up and you've got either bubble UPnP for android or one of the apple apps it's seamless. I do wish it had it's own app rather than using a 3rd party or other vendor (arcam or linn). 

 

My mac mini is in the process of dying and regularly fails start up (flashing white folder) so this made sense to me. I do think the Melco bests the Mini even with software (amarra or audirvana), SSD and 16gb ram. I do wonder how the aurender units sound and function and like that they support Tidal but I can do that with the Melco using the android bubble UPnP app. The local dealer Care Audio is great and he was a gent even attending the Philly meet with the Melco in my rig. 

 

I'll bring it with me for the June get together 

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  • 1 month later...
On 1/22/2016 at 1:32 PM, astrostar59 said:

Yes, that me. I have an incoming HDPlex power supply for my Mac Mini which needs 12V DC (6 amps max at boot up). I also have the Uptone Audio MMC kit to allow me to remove the AC supply in the Mini. I will post back here in a week or so once it has been evaluated. Right now using Audirvana+ 2.2 it is definitely better than my old CEC CDP. I am also using the TotalDAC USB cable/filter box, which cleaned up the highs and made the sound move closer to realism to me, i.e. less digital. At 330 Euros I would recommend that based on my findings. I have an M2Tech EVO full stack so the USB is already quite isolated from my DAC input, but the TotalDAC still made a big difference. I would guess in DAC with USB input direct, it could be an even bigger clean up. 

 

 

100W.LPSU.Back.jpg

detailpicture.jpg

You never posted an update, and I was curious if you thought the added HDPlex PS and Uptone Audio MMC made any difference?

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The addition of the HDPlex 12V DC supply to the Ma Mini with the MMK Uptone Audio kit was remarkable. It took it to another level, more dynamics, better bass, quieter background and smooth treble. The soundstage also increased. It has left spinning CDs in the dust TBH, and illustrates to me how good USB audio can be. I also use an M2Tech USB/SPDIF convertor and the TotalDAC USB cable / filter. But the power supply to the Mac `mini made the biggest difference. I would strongly recommend it.

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