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$piro

Streaming tidal via phone

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Hey guys. Currently looking to improve the performance of my streaming. My setup is yamaha rxv-1079 av receiver + emotiva basx a-300 amp + dynaudio dm 2/8 bookshelfs. I am streaming tidal via airplay and have found this source works well in a family environment because the kids can jump on and stream their music too. However the receiver doesn't support tidal in music cast. Could there be any significant advantages to be gained for about $500-$700 if i bypassed the receiver and  purchased a Seperate streamer/dac ? My receiver only supports spotify and deezer for streaming but you can airplay any garbage you like to it. The yamaha xwc-50 has caught my eye with the features and price. Would i be making much of an improvemnt from bypassing the receivers ESS DAC and introducing an external DAC ? 


Mind you my home theatre aspirations dont stem past a 3.0 setup and am more focused on a decent stereo setup and am willing to part with my receiver and amp in place of a nice stereo receiver (with hdmi arc) 

cheers spiro

 

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I am using the MusicCast app on my iPhone to stream Tidal to a WXAD-10 and this works fine. Are you saying that the receiver doesn't support Tidal streaming from the MusicCast app?

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4 minutes ago, figjam said:

I am using the MusicCast app on my iPhone to stream Tidal to a WXAD-10 and this works fine. Are you saying that the receiver doesn't support Tidal streaming from the MusicCast app?

Same here. Is this an old receiver that doesn't get any firmware updates? Surprised it doesn't support Tidal as i would've thought it is just a software update to allow Tidal to work.

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59 minutes ago, $piro said:

Hey guys. Currently looking to improve the performance of my streaming. My setup is yamaha rxv-1079 av receiver + emotiva basx a-300 amp + dynaudio dm 2/8 bookshelfs. I am streaming tidal via airplay and have found this source works well in a family environment because the kids can jump on and stream their music too. However the receiver doesn't support tidal in music cast. Could there be any significant advantages to be gained for about $500-$700 if i bypassed the receiver and  purchased a Seperate streamer/dac ? My receiver only supports spotify and deezer for streaming but you can airplay any garbage you like to it. The yamaha xwc-50 has caught my eye with the features and price. Would i be making much of an improvemnt from bypassing the receivers ESS DAC and introducing an external DAC ? 


Mind you my home theatre aspirations dont stem past a 3.0 setup and am more focused on a decent stereo setup and am willing to part with my receiver and amp in place of a nice stereo receiver (with hdmi arc) 

cheers spiro

 

you are spot on. ht bypass and removing the receiver from the chain is the only way to get good gains. An AVR will always hold music back

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Otherwise just try to pick up a bluesound node gen 1 or 2 for cheap, that’ll allow a good input into your receiver for Tidal. 
Then try to make that input bypass any of the receiver effects.

 

that should work pretty good without much outlay

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Firmware is up to date but still no tidal. Im keen on the yamaha wxc-50 to act as a streamer / dac / preamp for music only and bypass the avr. I suspect its a solid entry level product.

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blue sound gets alot of mentions in the forum. Will have a look at that aswell

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Hey $piro!

 

I can certainly vouch for the WXC-50 as a good economical option for you with improved sound quality. Its got a decent ESS Dac and the preamp feature is handy too. 

 

I've been genuinely impressed by its build quality and musicality for a <$400 box.  

 

TCG.

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Is it safe to say that either the bluesound or the yamaha will give me better musicality over the AVR ?

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3 hours ago, $piro said:

Is it safe to say that either the bluesound or the yamaha will give me better musicality over the AVR ?

Hard to say, probably. 

To be safe something like Cambridge Audio CXN V2 Network Music Player & Pre-Amplifier directly connected to your power amp will make noticeable improvement and the AVR goes for sale. 

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So my question still remains. Have you tied streaming Tidal from the MusicCast app to your receiver?

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1 hour ago, figjam said:

So my question still remains. Have you tied streaming Tidal from the MusicCast app to your receiver?

Nope.  Cant incorporate it into music cast. Only pandora and spotify but can use it through airplay. Not sure if any gains would be had anyways

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Your Dynaudio's are decent quality speakers - you are probably not doing them justice by driving them with an AVR. If music is your priority, then changing to a quality amplifier and canning the AVR makes sense. Add a decent streamer-DAC into the story and you will be sorted. The Yamaha WXC, Bluesound Node Cambridge Audio CXN are all great streamer-DACs at their respective price points. If you like tinkering around a bit, then even a raspberry pi+DAC is worth looking into.

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Posted (edited)

Mate, if your only concern is the fact that you are using AirPlay to stream data packets from Tidal  to your receiver don’t stress too much.

 

Airplay is a lossless codec which will easily handle the 16bit/44khz FLAC and will do the trick on MQA files as well.

 

Until it hits the DAC you are only dealing with 1s and 0s. The codec is extremely unlikely to be doing any perceptible damage to packets during encoding/decoding.

 

Like a few others have stated a better amp wouldn’t go a miss to upgrade the DAC and amp section on your AVR  but the lack of Tidal app isn’t the problem.

Edited by Steveo6217

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Posted (edited)

AVR->Power amp->Speakers? 
AVR is setup to downmix everything to stereo?
You have a reasonable power amp. You are using HT bypass with the AVR?

You mentioned that your aspirations are 3.0 max. What benefit are you aiming to gain with a centre channels? 
 

I have 2 setups as there are 2 bigger rooms. 2.1 with a stereo integrated amp, and a 5.1 with an AVR. If I want immersion because the movie has cool effects then I go to 5.1. If I don't care about sound effects (read majority of my TV shows, streaming music, a bunch of movies) then I go to 2.1. If I had to get rid of one of the systems then from my experience I would do HT bypass as 5.1 sound effects are nice. If I couldn't do rear speakers then I would do 2.1. I find that with good speakers and a good stereo setup I don't miss a centre channel. 

 

I mention all of this as there is an option you may not have considered. Something like Marantz NR1200 (cheaper but more like an AVR with HDMI inputs) or Marantz PM7000N (more expensive and more a stereo integrated with a need to do optical out for a TV) could replace your current AVR. It gives you straight AirPlay endpoint, and a HEOS option for Android. It's an option if you don't want a separate streamer box. The benefit really is keeping number of boxes down.

 

If you don't want to change your current setup then adding something like a Bluenode or WXC is a cheap way to get streaming that you are missing.

Edited by gwurb

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On 05/05/2020 at 9:15 PM, Steveo6217 said:

 

Airplay is a lossless codec which will easily handle the 16bit/44khz FLAC and will do the trick on MQA files as well.

I have since purchased a bluesound node 2i. My new setup is bluesound>avr>emotiva power basx a300> dynaudio dm2/8. 
Doing an a/b test bluesound vs apple tv streaming tidal i only noticed a 5-10% increase in sq. Both sound great but cant justify the $900 Spent On bluesound . Either my setup isnt revealing enough or apple tv is very underrated . I am considering ditching the streamer and trying a kleinIII DAC in leu   .  
 

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Posted (edited)

@$piro

Sorry mate - at the end of the day it is trial and error, but it is a journey and we all learn a lot on it :)

Try something else - take the AVR out of the chain (most of them are junk). Try running bluesound, emotiva, dynaudio.

Let us know how that sound, please.

Edited by Jventer

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@$piro Unfortunately you’ve just discovered that there is relatively little to gain in the digital domain.

 

Don’t underestimate the power of confirmation bias in that 5%-10%. Not having a dig, it happens to me all the time. Luckily my wife has a musical background, better ears than me and a free pass to tell me I’m imagining improvements 😂

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Posted (edited)
12 hours ago, $piro said:

I have since purchased a bluesound node 2i. My new setup is bluesound>avr>emotiva power basx a300> dynaudio dm2/8. 
Doing an a/b test bluesound vs apple tv streaming tidal i only noticed a 5-10% increase in sq. Both sound great but cant justify the $900 Spent On bluesound . Either my setup isnt revealing enough or apple tv is very underrated . I am considering ditching the streamer and trying a kleinIII DAC in leu   .  
 

Try this:

Bluesound -> optical out -> AVR in pure direct mode (AVR should only do DAC work) -> line level out to your power amp

Apple TV -> optical out -> AVR in pure direct mode (AVR should only do DAC work) -> line level out to your power amp

Bluesound -> RCA out -> Power Amp

 

That should give you a good comparison of 2 things. One, how Bluesound and Apple TV compare through your AVR. Two, how your AVR's DAC compares to the one in your Bluesound.

 

I know that when I had CA CXN and I compared Apple TV to it for Airplay CXN was clearly better (not a tiny bit but significantly). I used optical out as comparison so the DAC was my integrated amp DAC.

Edited by gwurb

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Posted (edited)

Can you talk to your local HiFi shop and get loaner units? May save you a bit of money ;) 

 

Did you give a stereo integrated option a thought? For video it would go Media player hdmi our > TV optical out > stereo amp. It would need optical in and your tv would need optical out. For audio it would go source > stereo amp. If you want airplay built in some of them have it (as per my example of PM7000N but I think there are some Yamaha that do it). If you get an integrated amp with line out then you can keep your amp for extra power to speakers if you still want it. I am suggesting an integrated as getting a pre amp with digital inputs is not as easy. Stereo amps really do shine above AVRs when comparison same price points, especially $2k and below mark.

Edited by gwurb

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10 hours ago, gwurb said:

Did you give a stereo integrated option a thought?

Been looking at an integrated actually. I can retire the emotiva to the family room where a 75'' and a 4k yamaha sit. I like the pm700n.  A marantz pm8006 caught my eye in the classifieds here last week too. No digital inputs though. Certainly a lot of good gear popping up in classifieds  at great prices. I hope its not a sign if the times.

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