Streamer software, what do you use?


I've noticed that pretty powerful PC hardware has been available for the last couple of years for cheap.  Say ~ $300 for a little desktop cube with 8 cores, 8 GBytes of RAM and plenty of storage.   You can run Windows or Linux (yeay!) and therefore I imagine just about any choice of software.

For Roon users this is a real boon as we can combine the core and streamer into a single device for far less than dedicated audiophile branded streamers.  I'm curious though what other software A'goners use?  The main requirement, IMHO is that it support remote control via tablets.  What do you use?

Do you use an outboard linear power supply or other tweak to improve the performance?

 

https://amzn.to/3QzOg6x

erik_squires

I use Ideon Audio's own Absolute Stream player which gives me excellent sound (i.e. clarity, resolution & dynamics). I have a simple fanless MiniX hooked to an outboard linear PS I sourced from Ideon. I rarely stream, preferring my own library on HD connected locally. 

I have both PC & HD on vibration control feet (OCD, I know no comments, please); I want to believe I get more resolution from this. I also get to use otherwise unoccupied feet...

Innuos Sensi application. I think you have to be on the Innuos echo system. 

I use the gold standard: Roon

Core runs on a very compact mini PC that I also use to work remotely. 
 

I use various Roon endpoints.  Primaries are Cambridge streamers in my two main systems.   Also run on Mac and Android tablet with USB output to active speakers, and iPhone to several headphone options.  

Well I meant to talk about software that was at least a little independent from hardware, as opposed to software that is bound to a manufacturer's streamer.

@erik_squires Before Roon I used Plex and Squeeze prior to that. A big reason for all was hardware independence. Google cast and Airplay also provides that and many streamers support those, though from a high end audio perspective those can have limitations regarding resolution still these days I believe. Not interested in any proprietary high end hardware vendor solution. That’s just my opinion. Just $800 for a lifetime Roon subscription which is chump change by high end anudio standards and pay Qobuz monthly as an option. The cost of hardware you run on can run the gamut which is perfect. YMMV.

piCorePlayer on my Raspberry Pi.

No need for Roon to combine core with streamer. That is totally erroneous.

Except for the fact that only Roon has a "core."

Hqplayer embedded on a fanless PC.  Have a linear supply from small green computer.  I use the hqplayer OS and control from a Chromebook.  I have some filters setup, but I am novice hqplayer user.

At one time I ran it on a pi III.  Doable, but noisy.

I've used that Kingdel  fanless pc for years.  I'm running Windows 10 and Fooobar for the local files with the free version of Fidelizer.  Because it's Windows based I can run Amazon HD using the Windows app for my streaming service.  This computer runs 24  7 and has never given me a problem.  To control it I use the built in Windows RemotePC app and can access it with my laptop, phone or tablet.  I do not use a linear power supply but I do block the 5 volt usb signal from the computer and use a powered usb hub to connect to my DAC.  The sound is really good and the system is very stable. 

On the same stereo I also have the PI2AES using a switching powesupply and Volumio software.  In a direct comparison the PI2AES sounds slightly better in a side by side comparison, I think. I haven't done the double blind test but could definitely say if I walked into the room I couldn't identity which source was playing.  Volumio has two major issues in my system.  It is very unstable and crashes daily and there is no way to play back Amazon music  in HD.  I've used Volumio for years and it was never this bad.  The latest is they've rewritten the software and unless you start over and flash the latest image they will no longer be able provide upgrades in the future. I haven't used other PI based software.  LMS and Moode are what I've looked at and I'm sure with time I could figure it out but I'm a little confused about how exactly to move forward with either one.

If anyone has experience improving the PC sound I would be grateful for input

 

 

@erik_squires 

I meant to talk about software that was at least a little independent from hardware

That was clear to me. The Ideon s/ware I use is running on my own h/ware -- an ancient, fanless, Mini X pc -- not one of their own streamers (which are excellent, by the way, and on my shortlist when I can afford more upgrades!) Regards

Here, a Samsung Galaxy S2 Tablet including a dedicated Samsung Docking Station. As software USB Audio Player Pro. This to stream Quobuz (access via Audio Player Pro) and listen to locally stored music (on a micro SDHC card). Via USB A to B (Audio Class 2.0) into Marantz 8005 DAC or DAC in the Cambridge AVR 751r or DAC in the Vincent SV-500 amp (depending with with rig I want to listen to music).

Big advantage for me with above solution: No additonal control required for streaming. Everything is done with the tablet lying on a small table next to the listening chair. Very convenient.

Alternativelly my DAP players whith above software (line in into the amps or via SPDIF into the DACs). In this case, reading glasses are a must for me 😏

I do not feel that I would need any tweaking. I’m happy with what I’m hearing.

 

--Well I meant to talk about software that was at least a little independent from hardware--

Erik, 

I'm having good results with Audirvāna which manages streams from Qboz, Tidal, and my own library into essentially my Ayre Acoustics DAC and amplification.  Listening sessions are easily managed via the remote app on iPad.

 

ROON, via Small Green Computer sonictransporter server and a Sonore microRendu (which will get upgraded to an optical Rendu maybe).  Are there streamers with their own OS that sound better than Roon, like the $20k Aurenders and others? Maybe. I am committed to Roon, which has allowed me to discover so much music in the last 2 years that I am still astonished. It's like adding Wikipedia to Tidal (or Qobuz). The interface of Roon is so powerful and easy to use. I just bought the lifetime subscription to Roon, which imo is a bargain. 

Fanless design is the feature I like.  However, when considering the feedback on warranty issues...