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252 posts

Ultimate Geek

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# 180740 20-Sep-2015 10:12
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We are considering buying a new music system, more for general music, rather than home theater. We want something flexible, with app control.
Also needs to be able to play our analogue (records and CDs) music, and favourite radio stations - RNZ National is easy to stream, but I'm not sure about The Sound, who don't have a standards-based streaming URL as far as I know.
Main options seem to be:
* AV Receiver - we have wired speakers, so this would work, but massive overkill for what we want
* Sonos - very expensive
* LG Music Flow components - very nice looking system, but not well marketed
* Sony SoundPal app compatible components - very new
* Denon HEOS app and components - also new, competes with Denon Receiver app

Anyone want to suggest a preference, or product I've missed please?

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3580 posts

Uber Geek


  # 1390560 20-Sep-2015 10:55
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One that you missed is MusicCast from Yamaha - it's built into almost all of their new AVR's already, the wireless speaker, soundbars, micro system etc etc are out in under a month so. Download the app and have a play, a MusicCast product will tie into any existing Bluetooth speakers / bluetooth headphones. I've used it on the home theatre receivers and it works well - easy and customizable.
LG Music Flow isn't what I'd call a music system whatsoever... The soundbar is slim, but average sounding, the wireless speakers are one of the poorest sonic performers IMHO.
Sony's app is painful at best. Apps can improve over time, or, they can go the otrher way...
If you think Sonos is expensive, then you must have missed the massive price rise for the Denon HEOS kit?

I'll add to this.
Many, many companies offer wireless streaming audio systems. Many are quite similar in what they'll achieve... as in, they are designed to stream Spotify/Pandora etc. Remember, the lifespan of music streaming companies is short, so you want to ensure whatever system you choose can accept outside sources.
If you're buying a single wireless speaker that doesn't accept an RCA cable or Bluetooth walk away.
Some of the above systems can stream almost any input source known (HDMI, optical, digital coz, RCA, USB, etc), others, only optical, some will only do RCA.

So - you can choose a 'stream to' device, or go with a 'steam to, and stream from' device.
The latter, at the right price, makes a lot of sense to me. That way, anything plugged in around the house can be streamed to any speaker, no matter how old or new that particular source is.

Last but not least.
If you're coming from a system with external speakers (proper wooden speakers), then going to a plastic box that's mono (trying to simulate stereo) then you'll be disappointed. The sound stage disappears, the plastic box can't compare to a proper wooden speaker with big, well tuned drivers etc.
There are generations of people who believe that their UE Boom's / wireless plastic speaker boxes are giving them 'music as the artist intended'. They're not, sadly.



252 posts

Ultimate Geek

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  # 1390569 20-Sep-2015 11:40
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Dunnersfella: One that you missed is MusicCast from Yamaha - it's built into almost all of their new AVR's already, the wireless speaker, soundbars, micro system etc etc are out in under a month so. Download the app and have a play, a MusicCast product will tie into any existing Bluetooth speakers / bluetooth headphones. I've used it on the home theatre receivers and it works well - easy and customizable.
LG Music Flow isn't what I'd call a music system whatsoever... The soundbar is slim, but average sounding, the wireless speakers are one of the poorest sonic performers IMHO.
Sony's app is painful at best.
If you think Sonos is expensive, then you must have missed the massive price rise for the Denon HEOS kit?

Thanks for your informed reply.
I found Yamaha Receivers (like the RN500 on special at Harvey Normans today), but can't find any reference to MusicCast in New Zealand. Do you have a link to the wireless speakers etc, and use of Bluetooth speakers? The RN500 and MusicCast could be the answer to my dreams, if it lives up to your expectations!
:-)

 
 
 
 


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  # 1390571 20-Sep-2015 11:55
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The RN500 isn't MusicCast, the amp mentioned at the bottom of this page is the RN602, it looks to be your answer.
Optical + coax + phono for turntables + USB + Bluetooth + wifi + RCA...
Available in October according to this + the Aussie sites.

http://www.audioholics.com/gadget-reviews/yamaha-musiccast-wireless-music-system

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  # 1390610 20-Sep-2015 15:35
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Sonos might seem expensive but compared to conventional systems (and if using streaming) there's no receiver, amp, tuner etc needed. I'm an admitted fanperson but reckon it's brilliant. 

We have soundbar, speakers and sub set up as HT with our TV but also use it for music via Pandora (or occasionally for music from iPad storage) - all controlled from the iPad app.

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