Need help selecting a system with Tidal streaming (Maybe MQA) and speakers for around $1k.


Need some help getting this temp system purchased. In about 2 weeks will be moving to a small home in SoCal, then in 6 months back to Pacific NW apartment most likely for 5 months. My room sizes will be small to medium, 10x12-14ft. This will be my system for these two moves then possibly relegated to a bedroom/listed on this site once I get to a permanent location.

My main goal is to limit my expenditure (as I will need to upgrade my old system once I have a permanent place) and spend around $1k for this system. I’m new to digital but streaming seems the way to go so I don’t have to drag around CDs or LPs and I don’t have any high rate digital files, nor do I plan on purchasing many during my traversing the West Coast. I plan on streaming Tidal and was hoping MQA if that fits in the budget and the system is able to perform well enough to discern the MQA difference. I know I could use a computer as a source for this but don’t currently own one and there goes the budget if I purchase a new laptop.

I understand the $1k can be quite limiting and could stretch it a bit but would really like to stay in that ballpark. I started looking at powered speakers, Vanatoo One, Paradigm Shift A2, Audioengine A2+, A5+, HD6 and passives like HDP6, Elac B6, QAcousics 3020, Kef Q150, Monitor Audio Bronze 2, Warfedale Diamond 220 and Focal Aria 905 all because of size, price and recommendation. I haven’t listened to any of these except the Elacs. Not having the time now to listen to some/all these I am asking for some experienced, sage advice on the speakers and whole system direction. I am aware that stand mounted/bookshelf speakers will be a sacrifice in the deep bass( not a bass head anyway) but would like to have some accuracy and a good wide soundstage if possible.

That brings me to the source and I understand it’s based on if I go the powered vs passive speaker route. I’m not sure if it’s possible to go the passive speaker route and still get Tidal streaming and integrated amp for the budget stated. This is where I get stuck, so please respond with your ideas even if it’s to say it can’t be done for the budget I have.

BTW, I listen to mostly rock, jazz, blues, and classical in that order if that helps. Any suggestions greatly appreciated.

Thanks greatly for your input. Please let me know if this is in the wrong category, since it was about speakers and source wasn’t sure where to post.

@willemj Good suggestion but prefer not to stuck with Sonos ecosystem.

@paul6001 I'm gonna try and listen to the Q150s before I'd pull the trigger on Elacs, plus shipping coast to coast might put me right back up to the $279 cost. Thanks really appreciate the offer though.

@gravis82 Yep it quickly adds up, trouble is that's 2x what I was looking to spend. Keeping my eye out on Agon as I don't mind buying used if it's  a good buy in good condition.
@gravis82. Thanks for the update. Yeah that's where I actually started with the Bluesound vault because I have quite a few Redbook CDs . Then I realized my time available to feed and convert them to flac could be better spent listening to the same titles in higher res. Might circle back to see what total cost would be for power node vs receiver and node or some variant of that. Not familiar with the m-lore or Aero 2 but will research them both. Thanks again.

If you want to pass on the MQA for now consider the onkyo TX lineup.  A friend of mine just bought it after looking at all the airplay amp alternatives out there.  I think its the cheapest and the smallest traditional amplifier out there with the least amount of sacrifices in terms of performance/specs. 

Only $399 and  comes with integrated chromecast and airplay.

MQA may not be such a breakthrough:
Beyond that, I want to repeat that some $200 will buy the necessary electronics. The speakers are where the sound quality resides.
However, since you are essentially looking for a bedroom system that will temporarily serve as a main system, select you system based on that criterion, even if it stays well below your $1000 budget. Alternatively, and depending on your ambitions for a future main system, you may want to consider a more ambitious amplifier like the $500+ 2x100 watt or so Yamahas with digital inputs (to go with a Chromecast), and just get some small and modest speakers for now. In a year's time you can add some really nice main speakers like Harbeth (the Yamaha's wil drive them fine as long as the room will not be huge), relegate the small speakers to the bedroom, and buy a $150 amp to drive them.