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Schiit Designed For The Real World

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Old 02-03-2022, 07:29 PM
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rjinaz86323 rjinaz86323 is offline
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Default Need some opinions on streaming

I realize this is pretty low end equipment for most of you, but thought maybe you had been there in the past and could offer an educated opinion. Keep in mind my budget is VERY limited (under $1K)

I am getting into streaming music. Currently using Amazon Music Unlimited which provide HD and Ultra HD. My current setup is using a Mac Mini USB uotput to a Schiit Modi 3+ into my MX130. Here are my questions for an improvement in sound

1. replace the Mac Mini with a Bluesound NODE (either using the internal DAC or run it through the MODI?
2. Keep the Mac Mini and upgrade the Schiit MODI to something else?
3. Run a different brand Streamer than the NODE?

Thx
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  #2  
Old 02-03-2022, 07:32 PM
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I can’t help you on that particular equipment, but IMO you would receive better sound quality from Qobuz.
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Old 02-03-2022, 09:17 PM
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I think the first priority is to get the computer out of the chain, so the Bluesound would be my first choice if you’re sticking with Amazon. If you can stretch your budget a little, the next step would be to upgrade the DAC to something like the Schiit Bifrost.

Joe’s right, you’ll get better sound quality from Qobuz, but I’d argue you won’t hear that difference with your current setup anyway.
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Main system: Linn Klimax Katalyst DSM; D’Agostino Momentum S250 & HD pre; Rega P10 w/Koetsu Rosewood Platinum Signature; Boulder 1108; Sonus faber Amati Futura, REL Carbon Special; Shunyata Everest, Alpha & Sigma PC, Alpha IC & SC; UpTone EtherRegen; Quadraspire Sunoko-Vent T, ISOAcoustics Orea & HRS Damping

2nd system: Luxman SQ-N100, Sonus faber Minima Amator II, REL T-5, refurbished AR XA w/Nagaoka MP-200 & VPI cabling, Naim NDX 2, Shunyata PS8 w/Defender & Viper, Nordost Blue Heaven PC & IC, Shunyata Venom sc, Symposium Svelte Shelves

Workshop: Vintage Yamaha CA-1010 & CT-1010, PSB Imagine Mini, Squeezebox Touch, Auralic Aries Mini, Schiit BiFrost, AZ & WW cables

Digital Streaming source: SonicTransporter i7 w/Roon, Synology DS420+, English Electric 8switch

Personal audio: Woo WA22, WA7 & WA8; Linn Klimax DSM Renew, Sonore MicroRendu & UltraRendu; Shure SE535, Shure SH1540, Westone ES50 Custom, Sennheiser HD820, MrSpeakers Aeon Flow C, Noble Audio Zephyr Prestige; Various Moon Audio dragons

Video: Sony XBR65X850C; Apple TV-4; Vienna Schönberg L/R, Webern center & surrounds; REL T1, T2, & T3; Arcam AVR850; Cambridge Audio 752BD; MIT-EXP SC
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  #4  
Old 02-05-2022, 03:55 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rjinaz86323 View Post
I realize this is pretty low end equipment for most of you, but thought maybe you had been there in the past and could offer an educated opinion. Keep in mind my budget is VERY limited (under $1K)

I am getting into streaming music. Currently using Amazon Music Unlimited which provide HD and Ultra HD. My current setup is using a Mac Mini USB uotput to a Schiit Modi 3+ into my MX130. Here are my questions for an improvement in sound

1. replace the Mac Mini with a Bluesound NODE (either using the internal DAC or run it through the MODI?
2. Keep the Mac Mini and upgrade the Schiit MODI to something else?
3. Run a different brand Streamer than the NODE?

Thx
So, just help me understand as your post is somewhat ambiguous....you are streaming using a Mac Mini as your music server and then connecting directly via a USB cable to a Schitt Modi 3 DAC, is that correct?

If so, the problem is you're connecting a very dirty device (the Mac Mini) directly to your DAC, and all that implies (and I could write a graduate thesis on the problems this presents). So...that is a BIG no-no.

My advice would be:

1) Keep the Schiit Modi 3 DAC. Nothing wrong with that.

2) locate your Mac Mini well away from your Schiit Modi 3 DAC that is in your audio rack.

3) Get a Sonore microRendu network bridge or iFi Zen Streamer for $399. If you can't afford the microRendu or iFi Zen, get a Raspberry Pi4 instead.

4) Connect the Mac Mini (that is located somewhere else other than the audio rack) to your router or network access point with a Supra Cat 8 Ethernet cable.

4) Also connect the microRendu network bridge or the iFi Zen Streamer to your network with a Shunyata Venom Ethernet cable. If you can't afford that, use a Supra Cat 8 Ethernet cable.

5) Connect the network bridge or streamer to your DAC with a quality, audiophile-grade USB cable*.

*–Bonus upgrade: If it's in your budget, use a Shunyata Delta USB cable to connect the microRendu or iFI Zen to the Modi 3. It will smoke everything else in it's price class and above, up to about $1500.

These changes will make for a big improvement in audio quality.
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Last edited by Puma Cat; 02-05-2022 at 04:12 AM.
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  #5  
Old 02-05-2022, 11:31 AM
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Stephen, does the Rendu do Amazon music now? I haven’t checked mine lately.
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________________________________
Main system: Linn Klimax Katalyst DSM; D’Agostino Momentum S250 & HD pre; Rega P10 w/Koetsu Rosewood Platinum Signature; Boulder 1108; Sonus faber Amati Futura, REL Carbon Special; Shunyata Everest, Alpha & Sigma PC, Alpha IC & SC; UpTone EtherRegen; Quadraspire Sunoko-Vent T, ISOAcoustics Orea & HRS Damping

2nd system: Luxman SQ-N100, Sonus faber Minima Amator II, REL T-5, refurbished AR XA w/Nagaoka MP-200 & VPI cabling, Naim NDX 2, Shunyata PS8 w/Defender & Viper, Nordost Blue Heaven PC & IC, Shunyata Venom sc, Symposium Svelte Shelves

Workshop: Vintage Yamaha CA-1010 & CT-1010, PSB Imagine Mini, Squeezebox Touch, Auralic Aries Mini, Schiit BiFrost, AZ & WW cables

Digital Streaming source: SonicTransporter i7 w/Roon, Synology DS420+, English Electric 8switch

Personal audio: Woo WA22, WA7 & WA8; Linn Klimax DSM Renew, Sonore MicroRendu & UltraRendu; Shure SE535, Shure SH1540, Westone ES50 Custom, Sennheiser HD820, MrSpeakers Aeon Flow C, Noble Audio Zephyr Prestige; Various Moon Audio dragons

Video: Sony XBR65X850C; Apple TV-4; Vienna Schönberg L/R, Webern center & surrounds; REL T1, T2, & T3; Arcam AVR850; Cambridge Audio 752BD; MIT-EXP SC
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  #6  
Old 02-05-2022, 12:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Antonmb View Post
Stephen, does the Rendu do Amazon music now? I haven’t checked mine lately.
Yup.
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  #7  
Old 02-05-2022, 12:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Puma Cat View Post
Yup.


Cool, then that’s a better option than the Bluesound.
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"Have you seen the stars tonight?"
________________________________
Main system: Linn Klimax Katalyst DSM; D’Agostino Momentum S250 & HD pre; Rega P10 w/Koetsu Rosewood Platinum Signature; Boulder 1108; Sonus faber Amati Futura, REL Carbon Special; Shunyata Everest, Alpha & Sigma PC, Alpha IC & SC; UpTone EtherRegen; Quadraspire Sunoko-Vent T, ISOAcoustics Orea & HRS Damping

2nd system: Luxman SQ-N100, Sonus faber Minima Amator II, REL T-5, refurbished AR XA w/Nagaoka MP-200 & VPI cabling, Naim NDX 2, Shunyata PS8 w/Defender & Viper, Nordost Blue Heaven PC & IC, Shunyata Venom sc, Symposium Svelte Shelves

Workshop: Vintage Yamaha CA-1010 & CT-1010, PSB Imagine Mini, Squeezebox Touch, Auralic Aries Mini, Schiit BiFrost, AZ & WW cables

Digital Streaming source: SonicTransporter i7 w/Roon, Synology DS420+, English Electric 8switch

Personal audio: Woo WA22, WA7 & WA8; Linn Klimax DSM Renew, Sonore MicroRendu & UltraRendu; Shure SE535, Shure SH1540, Westone ES50 Custom, Sennheiser HD820, MrSpeakers Aeon Flow C, Noble Audio Zephyr Prestige; Various Moon Audio dragons

Video: Sony XBR65X850C; Apple TV-4; Vienna Schönberg L/R, Webern center & surrounds; REL T1, T2, & T3; Arcam AVR850; Cambridge Audio 752BD; MIT-EXP SC
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  #8  
Old 02-05-2022, 12:37 PM
PeterMusic PeterMusic is online now
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Hi rj--no judgments on budget from me, it's cool that your dedicated to great sound. But $1,000 is tight. Most important point of all is to take hypotheses from randos online (like me) but then test for yourself before committing.

Happily, it's easy to test Anton's suggestion that you should replace the Mac with the Node. If your local boutique dealer has a demo unit he can loan you, try that first. Or order one from Best Buy and send it back if it does not help.

Prior to doing that, check online for various ways to optimize sound from a Mac Mini, and also try out Qobuz.

While you are comparing Node to Mac, note that you can use internal Node DAC or you can use external DAC.

Personally, I think your best bet is a $1,000 DAC from Schiit in conjunction with an optimized Mac. You can try this at the same time as the Node, and return the one that makes the least improvement.

Good luck--make sure to report back on your results!
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  #9  
Old 02-05-2022, 12:57 PM
clpetersen clpetersen is offline
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Stephan -
to your list I would add the SOtM SMS-200 Network bridge. (have one). Well-constructed and runs very cool. I understand older micro-Rendus ran pretty hot - has this been resolved? The 1.5 version looks great on the Small Green Computer site.

Also, why Cat8? - it is pretty thick cable.
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  #10  
Old 02-05-2022, 01:30 PM
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rjinaz86323 rjinaz86323 is offline
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I have one wildcard I forgot to mention. I do not have hard wire access to the internet. It is all done over WIFI. Would be a MAJOR project to get hardwire to where my audio gear is. I would think this might have significant impact on all your suggestions. Sorry I forgot to mention it.
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