Hello, newbie here having just got started with my Atom.
Progress is solid other than with NAS, where I don’t know where to start!
I’m looking for recommendations ref proven NAS device and any associated software it needs. I hear good things about Synology DS220j 2 Bay Desktop - but would be good to hear views from users.
My music library originates off my iMac where I’m in the midst of sifting and de-duping so I’ll have a clean ‘library’ tagged and organised (Artist > Album > Tracks) that I can drop onto a NAS.
I’ve tried using an aged DLink 2863 with little success - most artists seem to end up showing in a folder marked other, without their artwork - hence my desire to start afresh with new tech!
Any insight welcomed!
Hi, the simplest option is to just use a USB drive connected directly to the Atom. It has a UPnP server built in (the same type of software you would need to run on a NAS if you get one) and you will be able to browse and play the music in much the same way.
If you want a separate NAS, the tried and tested brands are Synology and QNAP, running either Asset or Minimserver. Music storage and serving does not place great demands on the NAS, so pretty much any basic model will be fine.
Thanks for the speedy reply - for some reason I’d got it into my head that a NAS drive was a better solution rather than connect via USB…
Are there any pros/cons to consider when comparing USB attach vs NAS?
Consider a Roon Nucleus and Roon software. I use both and find them really flawless.
My wife and I both enjoy using the Roon interface a bit more than the Naim App interface. And running a Roon Nucleus (which is really just a nas running their software) removes a ton of work on the software end of running/maintaining a nas.
(Prior to this I ran both Synology and QNAP nas’s, with a variety of UPNP server packages. I stand by my opinion that Roon is easier by far in terms of nas operation, and to me well worth the cost.)
Two other advantages to Roon. (1) you can have more than one instance of the client running at a time (such as on an iPhone and an iPad) whereas I believe that is (still) not possible with the Naim App. (2) There is a Roon App for OS X; you can run the client and pick your music from a Macbook. Both have been meaningful to me.
The USB option is cheap, quick and easy to set up, and may well be all you need.
A NAS will be more versatile and is almost certainly the way to go if your library is large. It’s also a better option if you regularly add to your collection or edit it, as to do this on a USB drive you need to remove it, connect it to a computer, then get the Atom to rescan it every time you reconnect it.
If you look into the NAS only for the music sever, you can give the USB variant a try first. Basically any USB stick, HDD/SSD should work (ideally USB powered, so no clunky 3.5” drives…).
I just copy my iTunes library to an external SSD. (For updates, a program only copying changed files is a nice addition.)
The NAS can of course do many more things (file storage, backup storage, multi-user support, running all kinds of server software), but it’s also another device running in the network, using power and requiring administration/maintenance.
thanks Bart, think the Nucleus is a bit beyond me right now. Had a play with Roon this afternoon and I liked it - albeit it operates outside the Naim app - realised I could access my master folder on my Mac and all was good on the Atom!
If your iMac is on most of the time use that and save some money (either storing locally or if you have a low capacity SSD internally, on a locally connected USB hard drive - you’ll get a decent portable USB powered 4-5 TB WD or Seagate drive for £100 or so - avoid fancy options and get a basic one).
Ah, that’s an interesting thought - and yes it is (on during waking hours). I swapped out the optical drive with a 1TB SSD which contains all the music files.
I’ll investigate further, by the look of it Asset sits on the iMac and that in turn lets the Atom see/access the music files?
thanks Phillipp, I like the simplicity of what you’re suggesting here! lots of options.
Yes absolutely, it turns your computer into a DLNA server that the Atom will detect for music.
There are many other similar software solutions, Asset works well, Minim Server was another preferred option (esp for classical) but may be payware now - frankly if you use them the apps are worthy of payment, but Asset used to be free for more than adequate basic functionality.
You’d only need to configure Asset or similar to scan a particular folder on your iMac containing the audio files.
If you feel a bit adventurous a Raspberry Pi with an attached USB drive is also a good option.
These solutions may be a poor man’s NAS but I’m not entirely convinced by NAS solutions these days.
It would oprobably take 10-15 minutes to install the software, enable the service and add a local directory containing the audio to be served on the LAN. Really simple.
Just use your iMac. NAS has been the number one source of problems in the past. Had JRiver running on my iMac for eight years without problems. Never even had to upgrade to newer versions.
Not for me, m’Lud. I’ve two running on my network, one QNAP and the other Synology and they’ve not presented me with any problems in several years of running them. A bit of occasional maintenance to keep software up to date is all that is required and it’s easy and convenient to add new downloads and rips. And of course they have other non-musical uses.
Asset is pay once. Minim is now on a subscription model. I’d suggest Minim for a substantial classical collection, otherwise Asset. There’s several threads on the subject.
Is ‘basic’ Asset functionality still free?
Sure but what’s the point of a NAS in 2021? It becomes another thing that needs management.
WOW - firstly - thanks to all for the suggestions and ideas.
I’ve just added Asset to the iMac and am stunned at the simplicity of what it’s delivery within minutes - I’ve only had a brief play but this looks like a keeper in that I can leave the music on the iMac and access it easily with all covers showing etc via the app. I could not be happier right now!
I’m sure there will be more q’s in due course - but this is a BIG leap forward tonight!
Now just need to find out how much Asset is to buy!
Asset free version is no longer available, I believe.
Minim has a starter edition, which is free, but seems pretty cut down. I’ve not used it.
Asset costs around £35 to buy and it is a one time only payment