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  1. #1
    Senior Member ModelCitizen's Avatar
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    (Vaguely) Audiophile alternative to Transporter and SB+?

    Hello.


    If anyone can help me I'd be grateful.

    I'm recreating a hifi I sold 10 years ago when I moved into a building site.

    I have a problem with the front end though. I used to use a @-tunes modified SB3 called an SB+ which was good. I also had a Transporter but did not get along with it.

    So I'm looking for suggestions for a high quality front end. I have wondered if there's a company that makes top-end audio adaptions of the raspberry pi but am basically open to any suggestions.

    For anyone who might be interested this is the system I'm re-building.

    Speakers: Shahinian Arcs
    Amp: Naim NAP180
    PSU: HiCap
    Pre-amp: NAC102

    You might think my obvious choice of front end was the Naim NDS or NDX but I prefer the Squeezebox ecosystem and these two items are silly money (and you still need to buy power supply!).

    Thanks for any suggestions.
    Last edited by ModelCitizen; 2021-03-30 at 06:01.
    Take care of your tongue. It is in a wet place and can easily slip.

  2. #2
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    Why not an rPi4B, feeding (via USB) any good quality DAC of your choice?
    Home: Pi4B-8GB/pCP7.x/4TB>LMS 8.1.x>Transporter, Touch, Boom, Radio (all ethernet)
    Cottage: rPi4B-4GB/pCP7.x/4TB>LMS 8.1.x>Touch>Benchmark DAC I, Boom, Radio w/Battery (Radio WIFI)
    Office: Win10(64)>foobar2000
    The Wild: rPi3B+/pCP7.x/4TB>LMS 8.1.x>hifiberry Dac+Pro (LMS & Squeezelite)
    Controllers: iPhone11 & iPadAir3 (iPeng), CONTROLLER, Material Skin, or SqueezePlay 7.8 on Win10(64)
    Files: Ripping: dbpoweramp > FLAC; Post-rip: mp3tag, PerfectTunes, TuneFusion; Streaming: Spotify

  3. #3
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    See the DAC32 announcement thread - and perhaps this comparison to a Transporter
    https://forums.slimdevices.com/showt...=1#post1015695

    The current model does not have a display - but you can use any other LMS display to control it.
    Paul Webster
    http://dabdig.blogspot.com
    Author of "Now Playing" plugins covering Radio France (FIP etc), PlanetRadio (Bauer - Kiss, Absolute, Scala, JazzFM etc), KCRW, Supla Finland, ABC Australia, CBC/Radio-Canada and RTE Ireland

  4. #4
    Senior Member Apesbrain's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Webster View Post
    The current model does not have a display - but you can use any other LMS display to control it.
    Or any browser or iOS/Android smartphone or tablet app. If you need a server, consider the matching CORE32:
    https://polyvection.com/en/product/core32/

    These products are the obvious choice for anyone newly adopting the Squeezebox system until PolyVection releases a "DIGI32" S/PDIF renderer.

  5. #5
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    In my Living Room HiFi I have a Pi4 with a Khadas Tone Board. The latter is a highly respected USB DAC capable of 32bit etc far beyond anything you can currently throw at it. The Pi runs piCorePlayer and they are in expensive WAF cases. I consider this player to be about as good as you can get for a Pi + USB DAC arrangement.

    I put it against a newly acquired DAC32. Yes the Khadas Tone Board is better but itĺs very very close.

    The Pi plus Tone Board and cases came to about ú230. The DAC32 is ú65.
    VB2.4 storage QNAP TS419p (NFS)
    Living Room Joggler & Pi4/Khadas -> Onkyo TXNR686 -> Celestion F20s
    Office Joggler & Pi3 -> Denon RCD N8 -> Celestion F10s
    Dining Room SB Boom
    Kitchen UE Radio (upgraded to SB Radio)
    Bedroom (Bedside) Pi Zero+DAC ->ToppingTP21 ->AKG Headphones
    Bedroom (TV) & Bathroom SB Touch ->Denon AVR ->Mordaunt Short M10s + Kef ceiling speakers
    Guest Room Joggler > Topping Amp -> Wharfedale Modus Cubes
    Everything controlled by iPeng & Material on iOS

  6. #6
    Senior Member jeremy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by garym View Post
    Why not an rPi4B, feeding (via USB) any good quality DAC of your choice?
    Excellent advice from garym - then your upgrade route is just DACs thereafter - I have Naim amps and use a Pi3 with PiCoreplayer and a HiFiBerry Digi+Pro into a fairly basic Cambridge Audio DAC, sounds amazing
    RaspberryPi3 server running Raspbian & LMS 8.2, USB hard drive
    Lounge - Pi2 running piCoreplayer 6 connected via Toslink to Cambridge Audio DACMagic 100, Linn LP12/Ekos/Troika, Naim NAC102, Linn Tunebox crossover, 4 x Naim NAP250 power amps with Avondale Audio 2018 mods, Linn Keltik active isobarik speakers
    Office - Squeezebox Boom
    Kitchen - Squeezebox Radio x2
    Sunroom - Squeezebox Boom
    Bedroom - Squeezebox Radio x2 plus another in en-suite
    Dining Room - Squeezebox Radio

  7. #7
    Senior Member ModelCitizen's Avatar
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    Well, thank you all very much for this. I have purchased a DAC32 (no display does not worry me as I use the wonderful Orange Lab apps on my Android phone). I have also found a top-end hifi repair person in my own village (!!) who now has my SB+. He even turns out to be the son of a friend of mine. Link below for anyone in the UK in need of those sorts of services.

    I am still accumulating all the Naim kit but when I have it up and running I am hoping to be able to borrow a Naim NDS or NDX. If I can I am going to compare the three head units. I am no audiophile but to me the olive Naim kit sounds completely different to any other set up. It seems to have an inherent swing and sex that makes even music I don't like sound good. And the sublime sound of the Shahinian Arcs (omni-directional and perfect for my 'difficult' lounge') complement the Naim kit perfectly (I really don't like the Naim speakers I've heard). I've not yet tried Naim streamers but for plain lush listenability, in my old setup, their CD Player, the CDX beat the socks of any streamers I tried. It'll be interesting to see if their streamer does the same thing. I bloody well hope not as the cost is crippling (thank God for Bitcoin!).

    Very interested to hear your experience with Naim, speakers and streamers Jeremy.

    Again, thanks very much.

    Repair guy:

    https://www.hear-audio.co.uk/
    Last edited by ModelCitizen; 2021-03-26 at 05:07.
    Take care of your tongue. It is in a wet place and can easily slip.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by ModelCitizen View Post
    Jeremy.

    Again, thanks very much.

    Repair guy:

    https://www.hear-audio.co.uk/
    Thanks for the link Jeremy, duly bookmarked

    ronnie

  9. #9
    Senior Member ModelCitizen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Man in a van View Post
    Thanks for the link Jeremy, duly bookmarked
    ronnie
    ...err.... don't mention it. :-)
    Take care of your tongue. It is in a wet place and can easily slip.

  10. #10
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    They also sell cables "from as little as ú165", you'll be pleased to know.

    According to the testimonials on their website, the cables deliver "very smooth and controlled sound with more panache and detail across the whole spectrum" (Bob) and "a ridiculous level of performance for a ridiculously low price" (D, RH15).

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