Which is your streaming preference?

Prompted by someone’s claim in another thread, I thought it would be interesting to understand which is seen by members of this forum as more important to them, streaming from your own store of music (usually local, but possible in cloud storage, or streaming from online providers such as Tidal, Qobuz and Spotify.

So if streaming from any source features in your hifi music playing, which is the most important to you? (Which would you go for if you only had the option of one?)

  • Online
  • Own stored music

0 voters

I use streaming from my NASes as the main source of (non-vinyl) music, Tidal tends to be to listen to new stuff, which I then buy if I like it enough. I have voted.


I have around 600 CDs on my NAS and cannot remember last time I opened it or bought a CD. Vinyl is still main source. I’ll be damned if I have to rip another CD. Life is too short!

I listen online and locally from my NAS more or less equally. If I had to choose which one I preferred from a sound quality side of things? then I will always prefer to stream my own stored music locally. I have voted as well.

Locally of course, I don’t use a streaming service at all tried a few and never liked them. However I hope this doesn’t snip into another vinyl v digital thing, that argument is so boring.

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I enjoy streaming from both NAS, streaming service, and internet radio. Up until now I have used the NAS more often and used TIDAL to explore albums that I did not own. I recently added Qobus to the mix and will be making the switch from TIDAL to Qobus with their wide selection of HiRes albums vs the Tidal’s MQA which I do not utilize and have no interest in. I also see my use of Streaming increasing with Qobus.

I guess my preference is depending on the music I am looking to spin. Where it resides is the tool I will use to access it. So my vote is no preference.

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I only chose online b/c I don’t have a way to shuffle my NAS library nor a sizable playlist and my typical preference is to have music play randomly.

If I could get all the tracks from my NAS in a .M3U file I’d be in heaven.

I stream from my local music server. I like to own the music I play.
I’ve tried Tidal and Qobuz; and I like to explore what other music is out there. But I can’t afford to subscribe so I just dip my toe in, now and then, to see what gems I might buy.


Prefer Qobuz to local, even I have more than 1,000 albums stored locally on a QNAP NAS.

Main reason, I discover new albums and artists everyday due to Roon nice GUI ergonomic and navigation. SQ wise, no big diffs between online vs local.

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Streaming locally from my 2012 UServe. I buy cheap CD’s from Amazon and such like, rip then in the UServe and listen, done automatically in minutes. It’s been pain free thus far. The CD”s then get stored in the loft and kept for backups, if necessary.

However, I remember back in 2012 went i first joined the Forum there was such a maelstrom over whether I should buy the UServe. I understood that there were cheaper NAS options, but boy did I not want to faff with ripping to a NAS etc, and therefore I was willing to pay out the money for the convenience of the UServe.

I wonder if I went the NAS route I would be using the online streaming services more?.?.

The only thing I plan to do now is convert my record collection from WAV to mps3’s for the iPod/car.

During working hours in the day, I only stream Internet Radio, not my music library. Internet Radio is fantastic.

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My own library is my main source, as I can determine what format & version I am listening to (just like Vinyl!)
Internet streaming is used to track new albums, new artists, discovery, discography gaps, associations, featured performances, recommendations etc. particularly when you have a decent music library management system aka Roon - it’s not just a pretty UI, but the metadata enrichment and machine learning is a fantastic path of discovery.

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Interesting some people are saying they stream from Tidal etc to discover music. How is that done? Does a Tidal/Spotify recommend music to you based on your listening history?

I would of thought listening to ones prefered radio station would be the way to go for that?

I discover most of my new music from Radio Paradise then add it to my Tidal playlist.

If it’s an exceptionally good artist I’ll buy the CD and rip it to my NAS. I have about 6K albums ripped in FLAC and AIFF and some Hi Res so I’m picky about what I add to my library.

I am happy buying music on CD and ripping to flac with EAC

In most cases for me it’s music from the What Are You Listening To or music I hear about from friends, then I stream it to see whether it’s something I’ll listen to enough to want to own.

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Same here. Mostly Radio Paradise during the day, then I buy the CD, so I skip the Tidal/Spotify route,

Do you not listen to internet radio Eoink? If not, I highly recommend it for its thousands of stations across the globe…and all possible genres.


With my discount Tidal is inexpensive and the SQ through the bubble app on my NAS is damn close to the SQ of my local stored music. On top of that I can create playlists in Tidal which I love. It’s a no brainer for me.

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Thanks JOF, I enjoy my current listening style, listening to whole albums. Internet radio tends to be used for cricket at my place.


I get a lot of ideas from the music threads, ‘WAYLTAWABI,’ What Releases are You Looking Forward To,’ What’s the latest music you downloaded,’ 'What’s the Last CD/Vinyl you purchased, ‘Jazz Music Thread,’ ‘Which ECM Titles,’ and ‘Your Song/Track of The Day’ to name a few. There is also recommendations from my daughter, friends and co-workers. All of that will lead me to a streaming service like Spotify (earlier in life), (and most recently) Tidal or Qobus to take an album out for a spin.

You can find playlists and recommendations on Tidal and Qobus as well but I have enough resources form this forum, family and friends to keep a list of albums that I hope to get around to play.

In the dark ages it was listen to the radio and remember the name of the artist then search through the vinyl rack and take a chance, then later it was putting the headphones on in a vinyl/cd store to listen to an album before purchase. Today it’s find it on a streaming service and take it for a spin or multiple spins before purchasing the album, hard copy or download. The ones you don’t want to buy you can still keep in a favorites folder for another day. All of this from your favorites listening chair or couch!

EDIT: today I have added Carla Bruni, Lissie and Lisa Hannigan and Stargaze - Live In Dublin into the Qobus queue for listening.

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