Noob... USB storage and playlists

I’m terribly sorry if this has been asked before but I’m not getting much help on the internet.

I recently finally bought a unitiqute 2 which I have been lusting after for some time, I have a usb3 flash drive plugged into the front of the unit and am using the naim app on my phone to navigate the folders.
But I’m not getting any thumbnails for the albums or tracks, just a folder or a note icon. Am I doing something wrong?

Also the internet say to make a playlist simply press the 3 dots icon next to the track and add it to a playlist, yet when I press the 3 dots there is only an option to play the track… Am I being thick or am I missing something?

My phone is on android version 12
The naim app is version 2. 23. 0
The unitiqute 2 is version 4. 7. 00
It is hardwired to my network router
The usb drive is in the front.
Files are a mix of flac, MP3 and aac/mp4

The Unitiqute 2 will play files from a USB stick plugged into it, and you can navigate via the screen or app but it’s fairly rudimentary compared to serving the files properly. Better to run the files from a NAS using a proper server program.

Do you have album covers as part of the metadata in your music files or at the very least a file called folder.jpg in the folder with the music files? If not you won’t see album covers even with a fully fledged UPnP server

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Even if just to see what it looks like, set up minimserver or asset upnp on your computer to serve up your files to see what you get in the Naim app. Then you can invest in a nas to do this 24/7.

@elverdiblanco thanks, I do have the covers saved in the id3 tag/ metadata but I will double check, and also try adding the file to the album folder to see if that works.

@robert_h thanks, my goal is to not have a nas. I’m planning on moving onto a boat in a few years so I need to lose my cd collection and reduce my box count hence the unitiqute purchase.

I’ll look into minimserve and see what I can do, but I really don’t want to have to have my laptop on just to play a song, that seems like 25 years ago.

You will not get the browsing experience you are hoping for from the USB input. Trying to fix tags isn’t going to change that. If you used an Atom it would be a different matter, but the Unitiqute is showing its age here. A NAS or computer running a UPnP server is what you need.

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As Chris says, album art will only come from a upnp server. Without that, you can only have what you have now, no artwork. An atom for example runs its own upnp server, but the unitiqute doesn’t. It doesn’t require a lot of power, a raspberry pi with an attached drive can do it, but with the uq it will always require an external box of some kind.

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Bum, that’s a bit disappointing.

Is the usb as source the reason behind the lack of “add to playlist” option then?

Sorry for so many questions.

Yes, the playlists you make on the Naim app would be from music served from UPnP.
The USB input has only basic ability to play from a USB stick, although this does not compromise sound quality. You can also use it to connect iOS devices. When these streamers were developed iTunes and iPods were all the rage but that’s no use to you if you use Android.

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