Network Audio Players/Servers

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Hi-Fi News Staff  |  Jan 14, 2015
Sony has returned to pure, two-channel, high fidelity sound; there’s an initiative to bring hi-fi replay back to the top of its consumers’ must-have wish lists. And it has produced a raft of new products focused around hi-res computer audio. All are compatible with files up to 24-bit/192kHz and, of course, DSD downloads. HFN was first in line to sample the ‘Elevated Standard’ HAP-Z1ES digital music file player featuring a built-in 1TB HDD, and its partnering TA-A1ES integrated amplifier rated at 80W/8ohm.
Andrew Everard  |  Jun 04, 2019
Andrew Everard explains how to integrate online music into your system

Streaming? It's simple: you plug your smartphone's headphone output into your amplifier using a 3.5mm-to-stereo-phono cable, tap the free Spotify app, and you're in business. It's hard to see what all the fuss is about really, isn't it?

Review: James Parker, Lab: Paul Miller  |  Aug 12, 2021
hfncommendedHaving nailed the whole 'one box system with built-in speakers' category, T+A now shifts tack to a 'just add speakers' unit. It's on-trend, and with substance to match the style

Are we downsizing, simplifying, or just looking for more from less? Whatever the reasons, it seems the one-box system, to which one only needs add some speakers, is in the ascendant. There's no denying a movement is growing, with everything from 'more integrated' amps complete with onboard streaming through to complete systems such as the NAD M10/M33 [HFN Jun '19 & Aug '20], Naim's Uniti range [HFN Mar '11 & Nov '17] – which was in the vanguard of this trend back in 2009 – and the recently-announced Cambridge Audio Evo models [News, HFN Jun '21].

Review: Andrew Everard, Lab: Paul Miller  |  Aug 01, 2018
'Bridge' digital sources, the link between conventional physical media and computer-based audio, are very much on-trend at the moment – what can T+A bring to the party?

So, are the twin threats of downloaded music and streaming services putting the final nail in CD's coffin? In the future will our music collections exist only as files on a home server, or indeed not as collections at all – figures seem to suggest downloads are flagging – but rather as infinite libraries accessed on demand from online services?

Review: Jamie Biesemans, Lab: Paul Miller  |  Oct 26, 2023
hfncommendedItalian brand Volumio is responsible not just for a series of network-attached digital players, but also an open-source OS and bespoke app. The Rivo (stream) is its 'bridge'

Launched in 2022, the Rivo is the middle model in a trio of new streaming devices from Florence-based Volumio, and this digital-only streamer, together with the second-generation Primo streaming DAC and the Integro networked amplifier, concludes an unlikely journey for the Italian start-up.

Review: David Price, Lab: Paul Miller  |  Dec 01, 2018
hfncommended.pngPacking a high quality DAC and streamer into a half-size box, this new digital converter also features powerful user-configurable DSP. It's a potent combination…

With this new DAC, for the first time in my design career, I have the chance to make an impression that has people saying “wow”', Daniel Weiss told HFN. 'Designed by our team here, it is different – but not radically so – to our earlier products.' He's being a little modest because the new Weiss DAC501 is more than a little diverting in any number of different ways…

Review: Jamie Biesemans, Lab: Paul Miller  |  Aug 15, 2023
hfnoutstandingMarrying old-school Yamaha looks with new-fangled digital functions, the R-N2000A streaming amplifier offers convenience in a package to delight vintage devotees

Few audio brands have escaped the component shortages and wonky logistics of the last few years, including Yamaha, but the company is putting all that behind it with a slew of new products. The £2895 R-N2000A is in the vanguard of a new series from this venerable Japanese manufacturer, one or two sneak-previewed at High End Munich 2022. The 2023 show then saw the launch of its lower-tier R-N1000A and R-N800A network-attached amplifiers, sharing many features with the flagship model reviewed here. Yamaha is also offering a range of speakers to match, so if you want to go full Yammy then matching high-gloss piano black NS-2000A floorstanders are available to pair with the R-N2000A. This fits with the brand's efforts to re-establish its once-familiar position in the two-channel hi-fi scene.

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