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Rick Dean

Audiophyte
I have recently decided to venture into the realm of High def audio streaming. I watched a video with Gene and I believe it was Matt?... They were discussing Tidal and other platforms. After doing some more investigating based on monthly fees and quality, I've chosen to pursue Amazon HD. I'm in the dark on what I may need to make this happen? My system is not current and I'm not going out to buy a new receiver/ system to make this happen. I have a Denon AVR 5800. Essentially it is just hooked up to my TV and an apple TV unit. I have seen videos of people looking at the service on a computer screen with all the titles displayed. Can you do that on your tv? I've read that you need the Echo Link to stream HD directly into your receiver? I'd rather run things off of a screen display than have to use Alexa. Can anyone give me some guidance?
Thank you!
 
BMXTRIX

BMXTRIX

Audioholic Spartan
First, you should read the FAQ on Amazon's website, as that will let you understand exactly what devices you need for ultra HD audio playback.


So, it's important to understand if you just want their HD service, or access to their ultra HD service as well. It will impact the device you buy.

I think this article does a much better job because it lists devices outside the Amazon environment...

The Bluesound devices are one of the top rated models for this type of integration. Nope, not a 12-foot interface (TV) for you, but it is supposed to be very easy to use.

The Bluesound products use great quality DACs which you will need in conjunction with your receiver. Kind of like my Yamaha Z1, you will find that the lack of HDMI on your receiver is going to become a major issue anytime you want to move forward. You may want to consider a receiver that has HDMI at some point. But, that's not required yet.

I wouldn't be looking for that 12-foot interface from a product in lieu of audio quality because I don't think you will get both unless you had a HDMI equipped receiver at this point.
 
R

Rick Dean

Audiophyte
Thank you for your response and guidance. I had read through both of those recommended sources you listed. I did go back and reread. As I go through the learning process, I am slowly getting a better understanding of terms that are being referenced. I tried to start a chat with someone at Crutchfield but I think the virus has that option on hold for now.
Is there a particular Bluesound product you think would be a good start? I'm really trying to keep this budget friendly. The $200 echo link was a good range cost wise but a video I watched from a European reviewer said the internal dac was not audiophile level?...
I currently run HDMI from my bluray, etc, into the TV then an optical out to my Denon. Am I losing some info along the way doing that? I'm sure HDMI out would be ideal. And directly routed to the receiver would circumvent any sound passing through the TV. With something like a Bluesound option do you select your choices from a smart phone or laptop at that point?
 
TLS Guy

TLS Guy

Audioholic Slumlord
Thank you for your response and guidance. I had read through both of those recommended sources you listed. I did go back and reread. As I go through the learning process, I am slowly getting a better understanding of terms that are being referenced. I tried to start a chat with someone at Crutchfield but I think the virus has that option on hold for now.
Is there a particular Bluesound product you think would be a good start? I'm really trying to keep this budget friendly. The $200 echo link was a good range cost wise but a video I watched from a European reviewer said the internal dac was not audiophile level?...
I currently run HDMI from my bluray, etc, into the TV then an optical out to my Denon. Am I losing some info along the way doing that? I'm sure HDMI out would be ideal. And directly routed to the receiver would circumvent any sound passing through the TV. With something like a Bluesound option do you select your choices from a smart phone or laptop at that point?
Lets deal with your optical connection first. Optical audio out does not support the lossless codecs, only the lossy ones. But your receiver is from 2001 and does not support them anyway. So you can not play a loss less codec from your system.

An old receiver like that is very limiting now, as there is a forcing of HDMI.

Now I suspect if your TV will send it, your receiver will support Amazon HD but not Ultra HD.

So I suspect that your only way of doing this is to use your TV and we don't know what that is. So you will need a streaming device, examples would be an Amazon Firestick or Roku connected to HDMI of your TV and send it via optical to your old receiver.

Hopefully it will work, but it might not. I say that as I was helping a guy who wanted to do something similar to you, but these HD services seemed to be now protected to stop conversion to analog. He used to be able to do it, but can not now. It would be nice to have a DAC that would take an HDMI signal from a streamer and convert it to analog. However doing this now seems not to be possible as Digital Rights Management ramps up.

As I say unfortunately there is a forcing of HDMI because of its ever stringent DRM.

So my advice is for you to reflect on how long you want to hold back the push to HDMI. In any event that receiver has to be nearing the end of its life, so you will confront this sooner rather than later any way.
 
BMXTRIX

BMXTRIX

Audioholic Spartan
@TLS Guy - Not sure if you knew it, but I did just discover that the Bluesound products support Amazon Ultra HD audio. Since their products have analog audio outputs, and top tier DACs in them, it seems like they may be a much better choice than the limiting Amazon Alexa products which are on the market, and fail to deliver the top notch quality people are looking for.

@Rick Dean, I'm afraid that you may have to ante up for at least a Node2i. So, that looks like $550.

A very big deal here is that these products are current generation, but will work with your Denon. As well, it is one of their 'cheaper' products.

It may be brought up multiple times, but the analog receiver is going to push you in certain directions here. I finally bit the bullet and moved to a Yamaha which had support for HDMI. I still need to upgrade and get a receiver which supports HDMI 2.0.

You are getting to that point it sounds like. Good luck!
 
R

Rick Dean

Audiophyte
I also have a Denon AVR 4802 that I bought in 2002. I have loved it over the years and eventually bought the 5800 as New old stock for a great price, so, it has a lot of life left in it...
I'm thinking the Node2i is the answer to my problem.
I'm still confused on what is required for the actual navigating of the music selection? I saw on the Bluesound 2i page that you could use Google assistant, Alexa, etc but if aren't using a voice activated unit, how do you surf your music options?

And thank you guys for your feedback. It is greatly appreciated!
 
TLS Guy

TLS Guy

Audioholic Slumlord
@TLS Guy - Not sure if you knew it, but I did just discover that the Bluesound products support Amazon Ultra HD audio. Since their products have analog audio outputs, and top tier DACs in them, it seems like they may be a much better choice than the limiting Amazon Alexa products which are on the market, and fail to deliver the top notch quality people are looking for.

@Rick Dean, I'm afraid that you may have to ante up for at least a Node2i. So, that looks like $550.

A very big deal here is that these products are current generation, but will work with your Denon. As well, it is one of their 'cheaper' products.

It may be brought up multiple times, but the analog receiver is going to push you in certain directions here. I finally bit the bullet and moved to a Yamaha which had support for HDMI. I still need to upgrade and get a receiver which supports HDMI 2.0.

You are getting to that point it sounds like. Good luck!
I'm not really familiar with the Bluesound products. I have to confess to a certain antipathy to streaming devices like ROKU, Firesticks etc. I stream from my HPTC for AV and use my DAW for audio streaming. I only use and app for streaming Amazon and Netflix on my 4K TV, as it works really well and is easy.

In the in wall system we use the Intel NUC for pretty much anything, sometimes ChromeCast. We have a ChromeCast device on all three systems. Chromecast is a great invention.

I just took a look at that Bluesound 2i. It would not be for me, but I note it is unavailable. There is going to be a lot of that for a considerable period I fear.

I think for that money, the OP would be better off with a new receiver and then he would have more options.
 
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tmurnin

tmurnin

Full Audioholic
If you need to replace the receiver anyway, and are a fan of Blusound, why not just get something like the NAD T758, which has BluOS built in? That way you don’t need the standalone Node.
 

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