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blakey72

Even worth having collection on HDD?

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So in the digital realm, what are most people doing now do you think? I have most of my cd collection on external HDD but don't seem to be using it much these days. I either listen to vinyl (run for cover), cd (quite a bit) or Tidal/Tidal masters/Spotify Premium. Nearly all my cd's are on Tidal so I don't really use the HDD stuff. I think the old cd spinner gives a better sound than streaming generally but aren't sure there's any difference between HDD and streaming, what do you think? I haven't even had anything on HDD hooked up to my streamer (CA CXN V1) since my NAS died about 12 months ago. 

 

There's no real benefit to having a HDD connected when you can stream as long as tidal/spotify have the albums is there? Just trying to decide if it's worth hooking back up. Even software I used (JRiver 21) is old now, I wouldn't know what to use. Is HDD/NAS more relevant now if you don't bother spinning up cd's or are into high res. files? Just checking in case I'm missing something that others have discovered or are doing.

 

Cheers

Blake.

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I've recently noticed that not all releases sound the same. I have a redbook rip of Tina Turner's Private Dancer and it sounds significantly better than Tidal's two versions. If you can be bothered and a/b your favourite records or tracks you'll probably come to the realisation that you'll need to mix and match your sources for the best version. 

 

Just my 2c

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I'm using my time ripping all my CDs to flac files and adding them to the HDD that's connected to my Raspberry Pi Volumio setup. I'm also purchasing flac versions of other music I only has as mp3 files to add to the same HDD.
It's a more convenient and flexible way to play music for me. I'm not intending to dispose of my CDs or CD player.
I like having the music stored and available locally, I do stream high quality internet radio, but Spotify and similar services aren't my cup of tea for quality home listening.

Of course I back up the Volumio HDD to a different external USB drive on my PC, I've invested a lot of time and money in my digital collection.

Roon is something I've looked into, when finances are more certain I reckon I'd build a Roon server on an Intel NUC and replace the Raspberry Pi and Volumio arrangement with that.

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It is very difficult to compare streaming with local storage on HDD due to not knowing what exact version is on Tidal etc.

I have found that new music with one version on Tidal is inferior to a local rip to my NAS, and is generally clearly better. I don’t own a CDP so can’t comment there.

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2 minutes ago, dolphy said:

If you can be bothered and a/b your favourite records or tracks you'll probably come to the realisation that you'll need to mix and match your sources for the best version.

That's an annoying apsect to music, even the "remastered" versions can be worse, additional compression, etc. Back in the day you'd buy your vinyl and that's what you got 😉

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Well, @blakey72, I have been using my NAS as my prime music source for a number of years now. I see that, like you, many people claim that they prefer the sound from their CD players, but that's not something that I can agree with.

I originally began using an Apple Airport Express over a decade ago, running the digital output to an old Cambridge ISO-plat DAC. My CD player at the time was a Linn Ikemi. When one day I deciphered the backing vocal (as I was passing through the music room, just listening casually) on Steely Dan's Showbiz Kids as "Going to Lost Wages, Lost Wages", and not as I had always heard, "Going to Las Vegas, Las Vegas", the die was cast. That was a $6k CD player up against a $250 DAC. Haven't looked back ever since.

The recent introduction of Roon to my system has delivered another step along the path to musical Nirvana, too. Using the Lightning app that runs my Aries G1 I was pretty happy, but now with Roon, the integration of my two streaming services (Qobuz and Tidal, which in many instances have Hi-Rez versions of my favourite artists on tap) with my NAS means a far more complete experience. I wouldn't have believed it if I hadn't tried it for myself. The NAS as source was damned good,but the way Roon delivers the music to you takes it up into the realms of wonder. Really at a loss to describe the nuts and bolts of it all, just recommend that you give it a trial run so that you can see for yourself.

As to what are most people doing? I don't know, but I do know what I am doing and suggest that you give it a whirl.

 

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Like all things, if you want to get the best out of a source you have to put real  effort into it. The question of which is best is moot as far as I’m concerned and only down to the level of love you’re prepared to dedicate to it. In my system the various files - ripped CDs and hi res downloads - are now my preferred choice over cd and vinyl and are a result of the effort I’ve put into improving dac, streamer, software  etc.

i still listen and enjoy cd and vinyl and Im sure I could get the vinyl up to scratch again but I really can’t be bothered and really only have the energy to maintain one source to its optimum. 


 

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8 minutes ago, buddyev said:

i still listen and enjoy cd and vinyl and Im sure I could get the vinyl up to scratch again but I really can’t be bothered and really only have the energy to maintain one source to its optimum. 

A couple of years ago I brought my record playing system up to its current level, just because I could, not because it was getting a lot of use. Was a time where it was almost the 90% go to device, but no longer. I think you're dead right, at some point we all, consciously or not, work out which is our format of choice and set out on the next part of our journey. No one is right or wrong when they make their decision, it's whatever floats your boat.

After that it's simply polishing the equipment and maintaining course until the next change of circumstances.

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not everything is on tidal.... 

 

i have some of my favourite 200 cds on hdd. thats it... ofcourse it doesnt cover other discs ... sacds... dvdas, LPs and such ...

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2 hours ago, buddyev said:

Like all things, if you want to get the best out of a source you have to put real  effort into it. The question of which is best is moot as far as I’m concerned and only down to the level of love you’re prepared to dedicate to it. In my system the various files - ripped CDs and hi res downloads - are now my preferred choice over cd and vinyl and are a result of the effort I’ve put into improving dac, streamer, software  etc.

Fully agree.

 

All my CDs (plus all SACDs, some music on DVD, Bluray) are on the NAS (which has RAID, backed up on old NAS, plus external drive). Spent a lot of time and effort cleaning up tags (recommend MP3tag). Not using Roon, have under used Tidal, which I may drop.

 

You get what you put in...

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I don't stream any music.     I have 3 versions/copies of my music digitised.     I selected an Album on my Digital Audio system and listen to it all once through.     I find enough new music to chase up via Youtube and the like.

 

All I want for Christmas is for every Album that comes out to be available in flac Download format.

 

Not too much to ask from Santa, surely.

 

Regards Cazzesman

 

 

 

 

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20 minutes ago, cazzesman said:

I don't stream any music.

I am a stream virgin( yet to try).

I have become lazy re playing vinyl and resort to laptop to dac due to convenience rather than performance. Yes backed up to another hdd.

I occasionally get the urge to wet vac some vinyl but not as often as I should.

I wonder if I should feel guilty sometimes as digital sounds good to me.😓

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Tidal, Spotify, streaming is way too convenient anywhere I go.

 

Gave up on HDD, not worth my effort and happy to pay for millions of songs at the drop of hat in excellent quality when I need it.

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21 minutes ago, Hi-Fi Whipped said:

Gave up on HDD, not worth my effort and happy to pay for millions of songs at the drop of hat in excellent quality when I need it.

Yes. Spot on, but I am a bit slow and in the middle with vinyl and digital although my younguns suggest I am very advanced.

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Gave up on HDD years ago when I moved to SSD...   lol

 

I have vinyl, CD's ripped to WAV on SSD and stream Spotify.  Trialed Tidal twice and dropped it twice.  Not a NAS in the house (looked closely at them and decided they're not for me).

 

This all works well for me because I've been running it for years.

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I'm not sure to what extent the metadata is customisable on streaming services (I don't use them), and that could be an important factor for some.

I know it is for me...

 

 

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On 29/03/2020 at 10:52 AM, PleasantSounds said:

I'm not sure to what extent the metadata is customisable on streaming services (I don't use them), and that could be an important factor for some.

I know it is for me...

 

 

 

The quality of classical music metadata on Tidal was so bad I dropped the subscription.

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Posted (edited)

Mostly (98%) listening on Tidal (Master and Hifi), and I agree, the recording stream does range in quality, I went thru 4 DAC's on my main system until I was really happy with the DAC, using a Grob now ...  I also have a low spec secondary system in my office working off my main PC onto a Rotel 1570 pre as the DAC driving a pair of powered reference speakers which has a surprisingly good quality of sound, I do most of my Tidal Music surfing on it whilst doing other work.  My 3rd system uses a Yamaha Multicast with Tidal playlists on the phone as my source when we are entertaining on the alfresco.

 

Many years ago I digitised my CD collection onto 2x centralised NAS boxes (HDD), and thats what I used for many years, I still use a selected set of albums from this on my phone when I am out of communications range for Tidal or touring another country where the Telco cost is too much.

 

Streaming I much prefer as ease of use, the collections are huge, the ability to just browse new tracks and albums and Music surf interesting artists is great.  Tracks I really enjoy are built into Tidal playlists to play on my main system.  In the remaining 2% I still play Vinyl (even upgraded my TT to  a LInn LP12 a couple of weeks ago), SACD's and rarer CD's.

 

Edited by Rosco8

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The problem with streaming is that you get what you get. Different tracks will be at diff bit rates etc and you wont necessarily know which ones until you hear them. Sticking with Tidal is not a bad idea as they at least have a quality choice. You will get better or worse quality with spotify depending on your subscription level and i beleive this is the same for other services. Also, for things like iTunes, you will get different quality if streaming from a device or natively accessing your library from a local device (if your streaming device can access the library or if it just receiving the stream from your phone,tablet,computer etc). 

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I’m using Qobuz now, it’s got a huge catalogue ( much more classical and jazz than Tidal), and yes, it is a convenient way of exploring new stuff and comparing recordings without having to own all of them.

 

That said, I still listen to my own collection 80% of the time. I would never give that up. If I lose the tether (i.e. the Internet is down) how would I listen to music without local storage?

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I still use roon.  Why pay for music I already own.

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A couple of points not considered so far:

Roon can group endpoints together - I can play the same music on my two systems (upstairs and downstairs).

Roon can be controlled via a mobile device which is close to my eyes, I have difficulty seeing the display of my CD player across the room.

I have tried, subscribed and discontinued Tidal. This pandemic made me redundant and I am cutting costs.  My music (58k tracks) is on a NAS drive and it contains local artists which would never make it to tidal.  The quality from Roon is on par with a CD, both feed into the same DAC (Primare Pre60).

 

 

 

 

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