I know little about this topic so forgive the basic questions and lengthy post; I haven’t found specifics on my issues in other threads with similar subjects. My Unitiserve is getting a bit clunky so I mentioned to a dealer from whom I was collecting some Stax headphones the possibility of changing it to a Core. He recommended trying Melco instead. So I have had a Melco N1Z/2 (non EX) and a D100 ripper/transport delivered (obviously dealer can’t set up/help as usual at the moment). For reference, I use a 500DR/552DR/ND555/LP12 system into Titan 808s with all Superlumina on one Fraim stack and 2 wall shelves connected to dedicated wall sockets into a separate Consumer Unit. The ND555 is powered by 1x555PS DR currently. I still have the CD555 powered by 1x555PS (non DR) on the other side of the room, (usurped in the Fraim by the ND) connected to the 552 with a long medium quality IC cable (forget which, a few £00) where the US, modem and Netgear switch are also located near the main BT socket, connected with Melco and Chord C-stream Ethernet cables and connected to the ND555 with a long Chord C-stream Ethernet cable and powered into a wireworld powerblock plugged into the regular power supply/consumer unit with a Powerline Lite. Initiatives underway already include changing the non DR 555PS for a new DR one and connecting that to the ND555 as I rarely use the CD555 any more, mostly Qobuz, Hi Res where possible. Unfortunately this will require splitting back to two stacks (again) and adding levels as I lack the amount of Fraim for this currently. Accordingly I have acquired some used levels of Maple Fraim to match the existing, as it’s discontinued, but haven’t found a base yet. This will mean the CD555 will be useable only by changing the PS’s from the ND555 as buying more 555PS’s/Fraim is not feasible, so isn’t likely to happen often if ever!
So the questions:
*Have others with similar systems found that they preferred Melco to the Unitiserve and/or Core?
*Does one need a server (in this case Melco or Naim US/Core) to use Qobuz: I guess not to listen, only to download files?
- How would I likely find the N1Z/2 I have vs the N100, N1ZH or N10 and all vs the Unitiserve or Core?
- For some illogical reason, I want to still be able to play CDs immediately, can I use the D100 to do this (I seemed to find different views on this)? Is it that you can if you connect the D100 directly to the ND555 with a USB cable as well as an Ethernet cable from the server?
*Is the S100 switch worth a listen at some stage, or the Chord one vs the basic Netgear one?
*I will have to have the Melco stuff initially across the room from the ND555, what have those with a similar approach found is worthwhile on quality/cost of cables? Which ones are most important to use the best quality on? I heard the connection from the Melco server to the ND555 is most important? But also what hierarchy between server to switch, switch to modem, modem to wall, D100 to ripper (and ND555?)? The lengths required also affect cost of course; once the Fraim base is acquired the server can go on it and use a HQ short cable to the ND555, possibly with the D100 too, but there will still be a long cable necessary to connect to the switch/modem.
*Where does the benefit of the Plixir power supplies fit in terms of budgetary priority for SQ effect on the Server/D100/Switch/potential future HDD expansion unit, as I understand you can get a single, double or quadruple power feed unit. Will need to allow for some of the Melco units eventually being on opposite sides of the room as not practicable for even more Fraim and to move the main BT feed across the room.
- How about using Powelines or Powerline Lites on the Melco? In which priority if not replacing all power cables at once?
- Lastly; on initial listening between D100 rips to the N1Z/2 vs Unitiserve rips/files vs standard res Qobuz vs Hi Res Qobuz, there didn’t seem to be much between the Melco/US and standard Qobuz, with the Hi Res a bit “better”; so is it all worthwhile!?! Though I’ve had time to compare only a few tracks at lowish volume through the 808s (due to working wife/studying daughter) and through the Stax, more over the weekend.
Any relevant experience anyone can report would be of interest,
Thanks and apologies again for the length of post!