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Marco
08-06-2008, 13:22
Guys,

I'm interested in opinions on this product:

http://www.sooloos.com/www/the-system.html

I will be in the market for a high-end music server at some point soon and this seems to me to be an ideal solution as it offers user-friendliness (very important to me as I'm not au fait with or interested in the jargon/techy side of things) and apparently also top-notch sound quality.

I've got no idea how much it costs (but have made enquiries) or whether there are any UK dealers but it seems very intriguing!

Your thoughts would be much appreciated :)

Marco.

Mike
08-06-2008, 13:35
That's a bit about that (and others) in Alan Sircom's column in issue 58 of HiFi+, sounds impressive, no mention of price though.

Mike.

Marco
08-06-2008, 14:04
That's where I read about it, Mike :)

I like the look of it because it ticks all the right boxes for me - superb sound quality (apparently) and 'idiot-proof' use of the technology, as everything is at your fingertips.

I just need to get some more info on it.

Marco.

Mike
08-06-2008, 14:19
Yeah, the 'article' is a bit brief, doesn't even mention if there are plans to import it. :confused:

Looks cool though.

:smoking:

Marco
08-06-2008, 14:26
I've requested some information through the website, including pricing, so all will be revealed.

If it's good, though, I don't mind importing one from the States. I did it with the KAB 1210, so why not a music server! :smoking:

Marco.

Mike
08-06-2008, 14:36
I'm gonna take a guess---- 2K

And it will be out of date within a year!

alb
08-06-2008, 14:38
$12,000 EEEK.

http://www.engadget.com/2006/10/10/sooloos-to-store-your-lossless-tunes/

Mike
08-06-2008, 14:39
erm...... BEJEEZUS!!! :mental:

The Grand Wazoo
08-06-2008, 14:41
Guys,

I'm interested in opinions on this product:

http://www.sooloos.com/www/the-system.html

I will be in the market for a high-end music server at some point soon and this seems to me to be an ideal solution as it offers user-friendliness (very important to me as I'm not au fait with or interested in the jargon/techy side of things) and apparently also top-notch sound quality.

I've got no idea how much it costs (but have made enquiries) or whether there are any UK dealers but it seems very intriguing!

Your thoughts would be much appreciated :)

Marco.

I pretty much decided that if nothing better comes on the market in the meantime, then this is what I'd be looking at buying when the time comes

Try having a quick squint at this.........download issue 11 for a 9 page review (plus admittedly a large amount of advertising & photos).

http://www.tonepublications.com/ToneAudio/Magazine.html

NRG
08-06-2008, 14:51
Marco, that system is expensive and I doubt it will offer better quality than a Sonos system.

I had a Sonos on loan for a HFW review and I was sad to see it go. IMHO it's still the best PC based 'integrated' system available and would be at the top of my shopping list.

Marco
08-06-2008, 15:05
Hi Neal,

Nice to hear from you again.

It's interesting what you said. I have no budget in mind as far as a music server goes and if the Sooloos is what I want then I'll get it. Like I said, user friendliness is of paramount importance to me, perhaps even more so than ultimate sound quality, as I already have two top-notch music sources available to me. I like the idea of downloading music/computer audio but I hate (with a passion!) the 'techy' aspect of it.

I want something which does it all for me at the touch of a button in as neat a package as possible, but that also gives me sound quality comparable to my other music sources.

Regarding the Sonos, is it from the same company, and what was so good about it that you were sad to see it go - in fact, if it was so good why did you let it go? :)

Marco.

Marco
08-06-2008, 15:20
It's features like this which excite me (apart from the fact it looks so cool). From the website:


The control one allows you to import CDs in minutes using the world’s most advanced error detection and correction algorithms.

Audio circuitry is based on the same designs used in professional recording studios.

Touch control devices provide a uniquely engaging means of interacting with your music.


I wonder if it's cheaper than a Naim HDX?


Marco.

Mike
08-06-2008, 16:10
Naim HDX is around 4500 http://crave.cnet.co.uk/digitalmusic/0,39029432,49296736,00.htm

Sooloos is around $12,000 (plus shipping, duty & VAT) http://www.engadget.com/2006/10/10/sooloos-to-store-your-lossless-tunes/

Sonos around 750 - 1500 depending on config. http://www.electricshopping.com/shop/shop.do?pID=7584&cID=125&utm_source=Nextag&utm_medium=cpc

I think I'd be looking at the Sonos. ;)

Marco
08-06-2008, 16:25
Thanks for posting the links, Mike.

Wow, pricey, but if it's *THAT* good I would go there. I love the simplicity of it all, the user-friendly layout, and the fact that all the techy stuff is done for you.

I found these comments particularly interesting:


Quite an elegantly simple solution compared to the other alternatives offered here in the comments. The user needs no computer or technical knowledge, there is no ripping, importing or configuration settings to have to go through or worse, mess up.



I've actually played with this thing and it's worth every penny.. believe me. The DA converters are top notch and the system is solidly built.....Nothing out there comes close and the developer tweeaks the software constantly for better features.


I presume you can connect your own DAC to it, though? I would definitely want to use my Sony DAS-R1.

Marco.

Mike
08-06-2008, 16:32
Christ man!... you must really value your 'convenience' factor! OR you've got too much money to burn. This technology is moving so fast ATM that it's most likely going to be out of date before it's even crossed the Atlantic. I think you'd be paying a massive premium for the designer/lifestyle look of the thing too.

I quite like the modular approach of the Sonos though (and the price of course!), seems like bits n' pieces could be added as and when needed.

Non of it's for me at the moment though, like I said, the technology is moving so fast. Better and cheaper isn't far away!

Cheers,
Mike.

Marco
08-06-2008, 16:42
Mikey, I won't be doing anything about it at least until the end of the year. I'm just putting out some feelers at the moment.

I have other jobs to do on the hi-fi front first, so if it's out of date by then so be it, although according to the chap I quoted who wrote that: "the developer tweaks the software constantly for better features", it seems that the system is kept up to date.

I'll see what's around when the time comes to buy, however it's this type of 'no thought required' cool looking music server, which offers top-notch sound quality I'm looking for.

Marco.

Mr. C
08-06-2008, 16:48
Would be interesting to see how dac reconstitutes a full high res signal Marco?
Quality high end dac's require 2 digital data streams to give sample rates over 96Khz.
With out the so to be formalised data transport rates, can the older SPDIF and AES handle the the newer streaming formats to the fullest capacity?
There is another way of doing this, not quite so pretty, however the results are making vinyl lovers weep into the camera ale :-)

Marco
08-06-2008, 17:00
There is another way of doing this, not quite so pretty, however the results are making vinyl lovers weep into the camera ale :-)


I'm all ears, Tony :)

Thing is, the user-friendliness factor is crucial. I will go to the nth detail to understand the intricacies of traditional formats such as vinyl, CD, valves, etc, because it interests me and I enjoy studying technical info about cartridges, phono stages, DACs, etc, but mention things like Airport Express and all that bollocks my eyes just glaze over... <YAWN>.

I'm not a computer geek (in fact I hate most things about computers) - I just want a music server that removes all the technical headache and leaves me with a simple touch button system to access my music and enjoy it with the highest possible sound quality :smoking:

Marco.

Mike
08-06-2008, 17:04
according to the chap I quoted who wrote that: "the developer tweaks the software constantly for better features", it seems that the system is kept up to date.

That's fine for the software Marco, I wouldn't expect anything less. But I foresee plenty of scope for hardware changes too! ;)

For one thing, spinning hard drives will be a thing of the past quite a bit sooner rather than later.

:eyebrows:

Mr. C
08-06-2008, 17:05
Marco,
It is fairly simple, no box between the pc and dac, just raw data being feed into the dac. Via pro PC card/s
You can use what ever software you wish.
However those true high res formats now become a reality, the main issue for yourself would be your dac's inability to full utilise the 24 bits and 192khz.
And genuinely the differences are quite staggering.
Lots more of this technology will be evolving in the next 12-18months or so.
I would be inclined to wait a wee while yet.

Mike
08-06-2008, 17:07
Oh!... AND the cost is going to tumble. More and more suppliers (not just HiFi companies) are going to start jumping onto his little band waggon and create fierce competition.

Bring it on! :)

Mike
08-06-2008, 17:25
Er.... this Sooloos price thing is starting to look like small potato's compared to the price of some wristwatches:

http://most-expensive.net/watch-world

Gulp! :scratch:

Marco
08-06-2008, 18:10
Marco,
It is fairly simple, no box between the pc and dac, just raw data being feed into the dac. Via pro PC card/s
You can use what ever software you wish.
However those true high res formats now become a reality, the main issue for yourself would be your dac's inability to full utilise the 24 bits and 192khz.
And genuinely the differences are quite staggering.
Lots more of this technology will be evolving in the next 12-18months or so.
I would be inclined to wait a wee while yet.


Tony, I'm in no hurry whatsoever. Like I said I'm just sussing out what's available and trying to familiarise myself with the technology.

If my DAC is unsuitable I shall simply keep it to use with CD (I will always have a CDP regardless of what I do about a music server) and obtain what is necessary to use with whatever server system I go for.

Btw, does anyone know how I would go about transferring all my vinyl albums to CD or to a computer hard drive, using my SL-1210 as the source? What sort of hardware/software and cables would I need? Any links to sites showing the necessary gubbins would be appreciated :)

Marco.

Mike
08-06-2008, 18:44
Btw, does anyone know how I would go about transferring all my vinyl albums to CD or to a computer hard drive, using my SL-1210 as the source? What sort of hardware/software and cables would I need? Any links to sites showing the necessary gubbins would be appreciated :)

Marco.

There's tons of stuff out there Marco, I wouldn't know where to start. But basically you just feed your TT into a ADC (with RIAA correction) and then into your PC. Here's an idiots guide: http://homerecording.about.com/od/transferringvinyltocd/ht/vinyltocd.htm

Sounds a bit 'tecchie' for you though! :lolsign:

Marco
08-06-2008, 19:00
Er.... this Sooloos price thing is starting to look like small potato's compared to the price of some wristwatches:

http://most-expensive.net/watch-world

Gulp! :scratch:


I'm not big on wrist watches so it's ok. I wouldn't say no to a Patek Philippe, though, if I found one under the Xmas tree :)

Hi-fi is different ball game. I paid 6k for a brand new Naim CDS2 in 2002 so I would have no qualms doing the same for a Sooloos music server in 2008 if it was a smart move and good enough.

I would rather pay much less, of course! So hopefully you're right about prices tumbling in this sector of the market.

Marco.

P.S Thanks for the link regarding transferring vinyl to CD, etc. I think I'll manage to struggle through it ok ;)

Mike
08-06-2008, 19:41
I'm sure you and quite a few others would pay 6K for one. Sadly I reckon that once it hits these shores it'll be more like $ =

IE. 12,000 :( (that's with importer/distributor/retailer markup of course)

If you're quick of the mark and manage a direct import you might manage something closer to 8K.

Still way too expensive IMHO. Maybe the buyers of that wristwatch wouldn't give a toss, but I do!

I really do think this stuff is going to take off and once that happens the prices will start to tumble. Just like garlic bread..... 'It's the future'!

Let's watch what happens for a while! :eyebrows:

Marco
08-06-2008, 20:08
I think you're right, Mike. I will certainly be hanging fire for the moment...

However if I were to go for one I would import it direct from the States and have it marked as a 'gift', and pay no duty or taxes just like I done with the Yaqin I imported from China. Bugger paying any dealer mark-up, too!

It wouldn't necessarily be coming from the manufacturer, though. I have contacts in the States so I would simply send them the funds to buy it from the cheapest source there and then send it to me as detailed above, or I could order it from an on-line retailer in the US under the same conditions :)

Marco.

Mike
08-06-2008, 20:24
Sounds like a plan... Sometimes it works, but sometimes it doesn't.

I've imported loads of stuff from all over the world, mainly in connection with bike racing. The ONLY place I've bought stuff and been stung for duty and VAT though, is the good old US of A!

Customs can be as sharp as a pin or as slack as, erm, a very slack thing. Luck of the draw I guess? Always worth a punt !

;)

Marco
08-06-2008, 20:30
Yep. I've been lucky so far :smoking:

But then I'm a lucky motherfukka with most things. I've always been the 'fall in shit come out smelling of roses' type :)

Sometimes though you make your own luck in life.

Marco.

NRG
08-06-2008, 21:53
Marco,

The Sonos has flexibility, features and great sound on it's side. The controller is dead easy to use, iPod style wheel and many features. Setup is a breeze, the various units discover themselves with a very simple setup routine, simply press the button on the front of each unit and they integrate themselves into the Sonos network.

There are two units, both great sounding, one is a simple access point and the other has a very good amplifier built in.

What I really liked about the system was the way the units networked to each other....devices like the SB are point to point and ingest data only.

The Sonos devices become a network and data can flow in and out of each device and also flow from any device to any device. So I could relay the o/p from my TV into my HiFi and I could also be playing music from my PC into my office system at the same time. I could even play my vinyl from my main system up into my office if I wanted.

The only reason I didn't bite the bullet was because of personal financial circumstances at the time (no job for 6months!) plus I was in full DIY mode with the SB so I never got around to it.

However, I've been thinking about it more recently and I may re-visit it again but alas finances are again tight, due, as coincidence would have it, to my love of expensive watches! :doh:

jester
08-06-2008, 22:01
very interesting i stumbled across this a little while ago thougt it might be of interest

http://www.olive.us/home.html

jester
08-06-2008, 22:10
also this
http://www.hiaudio.co.uk/MV_prod.htm

Filterlab
09-06-2008, 09:00
Buy an iMac.

Marco
11-06-2008, 11:23
Just received this email from Sooloos:


Hi Marco,

Thank you for reaching out to contact us and for your interest in Sooloos. We now have a distributor for the UK with whom we have recently begun working with. We are most pleased to be working Absolute Sounds, the leading A/V distribution and consultancy business in the UK. I will give you their details so that you may contact them for local pricing and purchasing arrangements, and I shall also pass your inquiry on to them.

Absolute Sounds

58 Durham Road

London, SW20 0TW

United Kingdom

Ph: +44 (0)20 89713909

E: ricardo@absolutesounds.com

W: http://www.absolutesounds.com/

In the mean time, you may be interested in some further information about Sooloos. Here is a link to a review of Sooloos that will give you a good overview by an independent source and a very thorough explanation of the functionality of our User Interface. The review is typical of the excited response we are getting from those that experience Sooloos. http://www.sooloos.com/press/Sooloos-ToneAudio.pdf . TONEAudio publication can be visited at http://www.tonepublications.com/TA-mag.htm .

There is a lot of great information at http://www.sooloos.com/www/downloads/assets.html . Be sure to look at the link for Onesheets/Datasheets that will give you a full explanation of the system and each component and its function.



All very interesting and helpful, but if the UK distributor is Absolute Sounds you can guarantee it'll cost just as much as Mike said earlier, as old Ricardo boy likes a nice mark-up! I'll pass on that one, thanks, and if I decide to go for a Sooloos I'll order it in on-line from the States ;)

Marco.

Peter Stockwell
25-06-2008, 10:58
I would import it direct from the States and have it marked as a 'gift', and pay no duty or taxes just like I done with the Yaqin I imported from China. Bugger paying any dealer mark-up, too!


No guarantee you'll escape duty, as far as I know.

Mike
25-06-2008, 11:03
No guarantee you'll escape duty, as far as I know.

On something of that value I would pretty much expect to be 'caught'.

Ouch! :(

Peter Stockwell
25-06-2008, 12:07
It's only happened once, but I've had to pay import duty and VAT on 2 Cds that I imported! so even teensy weensy amounts can be levied. Frankly, I'm not that bothered about paying duties, I don't like it, but you pay when you buy within your VAT zone, so why not when you buy outside ?

US retail prices are generally stated without any tax, and when you there, there's always an extra mark up. Sales "out of State" can often, but not always, escape sales tax. People oustide the EEC buying from Europe pay a price without vat.

Marco
25-06-2008, 13:15
Well, chaps, I paid zippo when I imported the Yaqin into the UK :)

And with quite a few other things, too ;)

I guess I can't help being a lucky f*cker :lolsign:

Marco.