2ND GENERATION MUSIC SERVERS ARRIVE FROM MELCO
Melco, the Japanese manufacturers of audiophile-grade music servers have announced the availability of their 2nd generation range that is now available in Australia.
Established in 1975 in Japan, the Melco brand has undergone many changes throughout its history. Founder, Makoto Maki saw merit in its resurrection once more in 2013 and revived the audio side of their business.
Their 2014 release of a range of music servers specifically offered for audiophiles saw many accolades from HiFi press around the world, including Editor's Choice, and Product of the Year awards from publications such as Stereophile, HiFi-Choice, The Absolute Sound and many more.
Today, Melco have released their 2nd-gen of the popular range, which includes the N1A, N1Z and the N1ZS.
Featuring audiophile-grade components and construction combined with unique data transfer and protection software that requires no network setup, Melco Music Libraries are aimed at audiophiles who wish to “store and protect their music files, whilst playing them back at the highest possible quality”.
The range is designed for music library storage (local or NAS) and playback specifically with an external DAC. It should not be confused with other online music streaming devices or other all-in-one music streamers.
Designed and manufactered in Japan, the top of the range N1ZS features a newly developed, second generation SSD (Solid State Drive) for storage of audio tracks. Unlike ordinary computer data drives that are optimised for speed, Melco says they have built their own SSD’s with ultimate sound quality in mind.
Mark Gusew, Business Development Manager for BMC Wholesale which represents Melco in Australia, told StereoNET:
Music data is written infrequently and is rarely modified, rendering the usual computer SSD lifetime optimisation algorithms as inappropriate, especially as they also tend to impact on data integrity, as they operate in bursts as required. The N1ZS uses purposebuilt SSDs designed especially for audio playback, with a low level and consistent management algorithm that has zero impact on data integrity, but lowers the power noise signature significantly.
Buffalo Technology, a leading Japanese computer peripheral company is the parent company of Melco, so they know a thing or two about storage devices.
One step down, the N1Z is similar to the N1ZS but instead uses 2 x 2.5” spinning computer hard drives. According to Melco, this makes the server more affordable but still maintains very high levels of transparency and musicality. This model also allows for higher storage capacity.
All models also feature a USB-3 port to allow for external drives for one-touch backup purposes.
There's just one dedicated USB DAC port, so you will need to bring your own DAC. Music files can be played directly from the Melco to a USB DAC or to a Network Media Player. Melco says any uPNP software package will operate the Melco from a computer or smartphone or tablet.
Sadly, there's no provision for use of the emerging champion of library management and streaming, Roon, at this stage.
Available now, pricing has been confirmed: N1ZS20/2 - SSD 1TB x 2 ($11,995 RRP), N1ZH60/2 - 2.5inch HDD 3TB x 2 ($7,495 RRP), N1AH60/2 - 3.5inch HDD 3TB x 2 ($3,495 RRP).
Locally all units come with an external CD/DVD USB drive for bit perfect & lossless imports of your music, in either FLAC or WAV formats.
For more information visit the Melco brand page.