Quite a while since my last post. I was going to trade in my CDX 2 last year to help with my purchase of an NDX2. But funds allowed for me to keep the CD player.
So I had what a lot of guys and girls would think as the near perfect source components. But nearly a year on I realised I hadn’t used the CD player more than twice in 6 months.
Staying home a lot more than normal has meant a lot more pondering!
So I made the decision to trade in and use the money to help feed the NDX 2. As a Roon user (from an iMac running Core) I considered a Nucleus but that would have tied me to that ecosystem for the life of the product. So I took the plunge and have opted for an Innuos Zen Mk.3.
It’s feeding the NDX 2 as a Roon Core and has made a real positive first impression. And I mean a really positive one.
I had networked the NDX 2 last year via an off the shelf router using a Blue Jeans CAT6a cable and like most people had been impressed from the start. Fed from the iMac via the house wired network, the NDX 2 sounded great. But when the Innuos was swapped in yesterday, the improvement was instant. Particularly the noise floor has dropped and the bass has really improved.
I had read a lot of reviews and opinions about the Zen and was like most, concerned about it’s ability to run Roon. I have run it for a day with a 900 Album library of lossless FLAC and Roon is more responsive than ever. The startup process, installing Roon, importing the library and managing the server are made very easy by the web interface which is clean and very simply. The system performs auto backups of the media and the Roon index.
For those not familiar with the network connections on the Zen, it has Network In Ethernet and Stream Out Ethernet, I presume working as a Bridge; I don’t know what difference this make to the protocols or the common conceptions (particularly on this Forum) about the difference that certain Switches make. Surely my Switch is no longer a factor as the Zen is the Bridge. I’m sure @Simon-in-Suffolk could enlighten me! But what I can say, is Roon has never sounded better with both my FLACs and Qobuz. This is all without exploring the USB out of the Zen; I’m aware of some great reviews.
Should I have gone for a Uniti Core? I don’t think so as Roon is my Library of choice. Also, Innuos have told me that at any point, they will upgrade the Zen to the next model up, the Zenith. This adds more independent power supplies and SSD. The guy on the phone went into great detail how Innuos have had to work hard to power SSDs differently to HDD because of electrical noise; not as simple as swapping HDD for SSD.
As you can tell, I’m really happy with my addition. But how can I not miss the CDX 2? A legend.