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PostPosted: November 21st, 2020, 10:50 pm 

Joined: June 4th, 2013, 2:39 pm
Posts: 288
Nice review, Paul. A couple of points:

1) $4500 may be pricey for a mere renderer/streamer, but we're talking a ripper as well. One of the main drawbacks of a simple PC ripping system is that off-label, obscure, imported or "collector" CDs often turn up blank tracks when submitted to the ordinary online databases. For heavy-duty collectors, this can be a huge disappointment and requires intense labor to fill in the metadata. From my understanding, Innuos uses Gracenote, which is pricey to license but is pretty comprehensive. I'd be curious to know how the Innuos handles the more obscure music labels. Personally, I use iTunes to identify the CD and tracks, then send that info to XLD (on my Mac) for quality ripping. It's a *rare* CD that iTunes cannot identify. But for others, the Innuos can be an all-in-one solution if it *reliably* provides correct metadata for rips.

2) I wonder how the Zenith as renderer would compare to my Allo USBridge, a custom implementation of the Rpi3 with custom Shanti power supply. I quite enjoy the sound, especially with Gentooplayer installed, but it's tweaky and not for the plug-and-play user. Wish I were still nearby to be able to swap equipment!

PostPosted: November 22nd, 2020, 7:30 am 
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Joined: January 15th, 2015, 7:19 am
Posts: 1366
Location: Baltimore MD
Even though the Zenith is not quite “plug and play” it was pretty simple to set up. I have only complaint is that gone needs 3rd party software one either an iPad or android or window platform to work. The software for iPad iPhone is “ipeng” which not very good. “SpeedControl” works much better, and I did not try the android version. A product at this price point should have an easy to use bit of control software.
The ripping feature work great and is absolutely trouble free but I don’t have any obscure CD’s to try.
I know this is a diy forum and I posted the link to the review only to let members know what I am up to.
I still will build and tweak things but they will only appear here.
I still do not know what I am doing with the review thingy. There are things I hate about it. About 80% of me knows that most of the reviews out there are pure BS and are about marketing the reviewers so that he gets plenty of product to review. I feel most of the audio equipment out there are not very musical to my ears. I have been thinking once my reference system is settled, and it almost is with the replacement of the Spatial’s with the Volti Razz I may go for a small product and tweaking review blog.
It will never generate advertising dollars but might be fun.

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