Internet radio in new AVRs, and pre/pros via HEOS

TLS Guy

TLS Guy

Audioholic Slumlord
My new Marantz 7705 has Internet Radio via HEOS. It has analog FM, HD radio seems to have gone by the wayside. I also have my Quad FM4 tuner, and streaming via my DAW with its RME DAC.

Analog FM is now showing its age, with mainly limited dynamic range compared to other sources, to cover its limited dynamic range. Inter channel cross talk is also relatively poor. The Quad FM 4 gives a slightly better account of itself compared to the on board FM tuner in the Marantz.

The Internet radio on the Marantz is handy, but its unlistenable as the quality is so poor. It is jammed packed with digital artifact. The strange thing is that via the DAW and RME the quality is far better and comparable to FM, but with different shortcomings. They are both 128 kbs mp3 streams form MPR. The difference is not in the least bit subtle.

I wonder what others have experienced on pressing their Internet radio buttons?

MPR only offer these 128 kbs mp3 streams. This is not really adequate, and we need 320 kbs as a minimum standard. The quality is far lower than the audio of the BPO Digital concert Hall, Medici TV and the BBC streamed from the UK. The quality of these is excellent.

So I really am interested in others experience of these radio streams.
 
William Lemmerhirt

William Lemmerhirt

Audioholic Spartan
Well when I stream I usually use Spotify via AirPlay from my cellphone to my Marantz. My previous Onkyo had a variety of internet radio stations from all over. Every one sounded horrible, so I haven’t bothered to try again. I’ve also noticed sometimes when I’m in my car listening to FM, they brag about their digital broadcasts and I have to say they sound like Crap too, though not as bad.
 
TLS Guy

TLS Guy

Audioholic Slumlord
Well when I stream I usually use Spotify via AirPlay from my cellphone to my Marantz. My previous Onkyo had a variety of internet radio stations from all over. Every one sounded horrible, so I haven’t bothered to try again. I’ve also noticed sometimes when I’m in my car listening to FM, they brag about their digital broadcasts and I have to say they sound like Crap too, though not as bad.
This is really odd as I think the Marantz HEOS must be grabbing the same stream from the Internet. So there must be something about HEOS that is totally dreadful, as the same program via HEOS and my DAW/RME are not even close to the same. Someone must have worked hard to screw that up so badly.

Anyhow it seems we have both had the same bad experience. My old Marantz 7701s next door and downstairs have HD radio. That is really the same quality of sound as my DAW/ RME. One of those was in my former AV room and you could not tell the HD radio from my DAW. It therefore was a mistake to leave out HD radio.
 
W

warnerwh

Audioholic
On my Denon I use Tune In radio. I haven't looked that hard but I have found 3 jazz stations all broadcasting in 320. With over 100,000 stations I'm sure there are more. It's possible your Marantz very similar.
 
Pogre

Pogre

Audioholic Warlord
I rarely stream. I almost exclusively listen to my lossless files. I don't think I've ever hit Internet radio even just playing around, but now I'm curious.
 
lovinthehd

lovinthehd

Audioholic Slumlord
The internet radio app in my avrs I don't use much, and did need to search for better streams often (some were only 64kbps). The one internet radio station I use regularly had an android app (FIP from France) and I just use that from a phone to cast it to my avr/devices.
 
G

Grandzoltar

Full Audioholic
The Heos eco system is cool if you get their heos speakers through out the house. They will play in sync with each other and the AVR connected to them. Connecting the heos speakers via ethernet are capable of 24 bit 192 kHz the same as most Denon and Marantz AVR's so provided your source material is capable you will have your high fidelity with heos. Internet radio is the bottom of the barrel when it comes to quality. Even air play from your phone will not render the highest sampling rate. Its only through the heos app on your phone launching the desired music platform does the AVR use its highest sampling rate capabilities.
 
P

PENG

Audioholic Overlord
I no longer find FM quality acceptable. Internet radio's sound quality is worse, but more choices in terms of varieties. Surprisingly, I actually found there are contents on Youtube these days that the sound quality could be acceptable, to me anyway though it is so hit and miss..
 
Ponzio

Ponzio

Audioholic Field Marshall
No complaints with my Yamaha AVR's (3070, 3040, 803, 2000 & 3000) internet radio function, considering most are 128kbps streams on average.

If you're expecting audiophile grade SQ (sound quality), you're going to be highly disappointed.

I find on the Yamaha, the SQ can be slightly improved by using their 'Enhancer' DTS.
 
Gmoney

Gmoney

Audioholic Chief
No complaints with my Yamaha AVR's (3070, 3040, 803, 2000 & 3000) internet radio function, considering most are 128kbps streams on average.

If you're expecting audiophile grade SQ (sound quality), you're going to be highly disappointed.

I find on the Yamaha, the SQ can be slightly improved by using their 'Enhancer' DTS.
I got no Complaints with my Yamaha a1080 or my 7790 internet radio. I love the Uncensored radio stations from around the world. FM here in the States suck,
 
TLS Guy

TLS Guy

Audioholic Slumlord
I no longer find FM quality acceptable. Internet radio's sound quality is worse, but more choices in terms of varieties. Surprisingly, I actually found there are contents on Youtube these days that the sound quality could be acceptable, to me anyway though it is so hit and miss..
Yes, FM now does sound a little dated. A Quad FM 4 though does make for a pleasant listen if you discount the lack of dynamic range.

My point is though that Internet radio via my pre/pro is not listenable. It is torture. On the other hand the same KB stream through my DAW and RME is good enough to enjoy MPR broadcasts, especially the Friday night Minnesota Orchestra broadcasts. Would I like better? Yes, I would, but I don't have to turn it off like I would from the pre/pro apparently handling the same stream. My question is why? I have no idea why this should be so. The quality difference is a chasm that anyone would recognize.
 
lovinthehd

lovinthehd

Audioholic Slumlord
Yes, FM now does sound a little dated. A Quad FM 4 though does make for a pleasant listen if you discount the lack of dynamic range.

My point is though that Internet radio via my pre/pro is not listenable. It is torture. On the other hand the same KB stream through my DAW and RME is good enough to enjoy MPR broadcasts, especially the Friday night Minnesota Orchestra broadcasts. Would I like better? Yes, I would, but I don't have to turn it off like I would from the pre/pro apparently handling the same stream. My question is why? I have no idea why this should be so. The quality difference is a chasm that anyone would recognize.
What bitrate are the two feeds?
 
TLS Guy

TLS Guy

Audioholic Slumlord
I'd think it was some sort of processing imparted in one or the other device....unless one is AAC instead of mp3....
The TV screen says 128 kbs mps. So does the DAW. The RME unit changes codecs automatically. Obviously the Internet radio feature is a bust. Luckily I don't have to use it. On the whole though the RME/DAW sounds better handling anything, although it connects via optical toslink to the Marantz using AES connection. That is a version of SPDIF.
 
Ponzio

Ponzio

Audioholic Field Marshall
The TV screen says 128 kbs mps. So does the DAW. The RME unit changes codecs automatically. Obviously the Internet radio feature is a bust. Luckily I don't have to use it. On the whole though the RME/DAW sounds better handling anything, although it connects via optical toslink to the Marantz using AES connection. That is a version of SPDIF.
FWIW, Yamaha recently changed their internet tuning service from vTuner to Airable recently, which has a ton of 320 kbps streams to choose from on their newer models (RX-Axx40 and up). It can be accessed using the search engine in the ‘High quality’ field, via the web GUI or on your TV (monitor). Sadly around here (southeastern PA) a vast majority of FM/AM radio stations are still streaming at 128 kbps. vTuner also offers some of those same stations on the older Yamaha AVR’s but now charges a yearly fee ($3).

Is it possible Marantz is also using Airable or whoever their tuning service is and could give you access to these same 320 kbps streaming stations? It might be worth rooting around for. They definitely sound way better. Not Hi-Res or lossless quality better but it’s an exponential improvement from 128.
 
S

sterling shoote

Audioholic General
My new Marantz 7705 has Internet Radio via HEOS. It has analog FM, HD radio seems to have gone by the wayside. I also have my Quad FM4 tuner, and streaming via my DAW with its RME DAC.

Analog FM is now showing its age, with mainly limited dynamic range compared to other sources, to cover its limited dynamic range. Inter channel cross talk is also relatively poor. The Quad FM 4 gives a slightly better account of itself compared to the on board FM tuner in the Marantz.

The Internet radio on the Marantz is handy, but its unlistenable as the quality is so poor. It is jammed packed with digital artifact. The strange thing is that via the DAW and RME the quality is far better and comparable to FM, but with different shortcomings. They are both 128 kbs mp3 streams form MPR. The difference is not in the least bit subtle.

I wonder what others have experienced on pressing their Internet radio buttons?

MPR only offer these 128 kbs mp3 streams. This is not really adequate, and we need 320 kbs as a minimum standard. The quality is far lower than the audio of the BPO Digital concert Hall, Medici TV and the BBC streamed from the UK. The quality of these is excellent.

So I really am interested in others experience of these rad
My new Marantz 7705 has Internet Radio via HEOS. It has analog FM, HD radio seems to have gone by the wayside. I also have my Quad FM4 tuner, and streaming via my DAW with its RME DAC.

Analog FM is now showing its age, with mainly limited dynamic range compared to other sources, to cover its limited dynamic range. Inter channel cross talk is also relatively poor. The Quad FM 4 gives a slightly better account of itself compared to the on board FM tuner in the Marantz.

The Internet radio on the Marantz is handy, but its unlistenable as the quality is so poor. It is jammed packed with digital artifact. The strange thing is that via the DAW and RME the quality is far better and comparable to FM, but with different shortcomings. They are both 128 kbs mp3 streams form MPR. The difference is not in the least bit subtle.

I wonder what others have experienced on pressing their Internet radio buttons?

MPR only offer these 128 kbs mp3 streams. This is not really adequate, and we need 320 kbs as a minimum standard. The quality is far lower than the audio of the BPO Digital concert Hall, Medici TV and the BBC streamed from the UK. The quality of these is excellent.

So I really am interested in others experience of these radio streams.
I've abandoned internet radio. I've discovered there are much better ways to access information and music on demand. I am very satisfied with Apple Music via iTunes to Airport Express connected to my Pre-Pro. iTunes Radio can quickly retrieve iHeartRadio, NPR and many other AM/FM broadcasts. Of course you can get the same experience from your Marantz Pre-Pro via Airplay. Now, while Airplay is convenient for casual listening entertainment, I also have one of my laptop's wired to my OPPO-205's usb DAC, which is connected to my Pre-Pro; and, I've got to tell ya, this connection to access Apple Music, as well as my iTunes Library, gets me a music entertainment experience rivaling stereo SACD quality. At any rate, your Marantz pretty much permits you to get media in all manner that it can be delivered so why not just experiment, maybe connect your PC or MAC to your Marantz via HDMI and/or usb and then try out Apple Music.
 
TLS Guy

TLS Guy

Audioholic Slumlord
I've abandoned internet radio. I've discovered there are much better ways to access information and music on demand. I am very satisfied with Apple Music via iTunes to Airport Express connected to my Pre-Pro. iTunes Radio can quickly retrieve iHeartRadio, NPR and many other AM/FM broadcasts. Of course you can get the same experience from your Marantz Pre-Pro via Airplay. Now, while Airplay is convenient for casual listening entertainment, I also have one of my laptop's wired to my OPPO-205's usb DAC, which is connected to my Pre-Pro; and, I've got to tell ya, this connection to access Apple Music, as well as my iTunes Library, gets me a music entertainment experience rivaling stereo SACD quality. At any rate, your Marantz pretty much permits you to get media in all manner that it can be delivered so why not just experiment, maybe connect your PC or MAC to your Marantz via HDMI and/or usb and then try out Apple Music.
Actually I was more curious then anything as to how and why this Internet radio in a high end unit sounds so bad. It seem to me that actually might have taken work!
I can grab any stream available on the NET and play it in the highest quality.

My DAW is superb with its RME unit that can handle just about any codec known to man. It is connected to our family VPN server so I get the BBC direct form the UK and so can the HTPC. I find the quality of the BBC streams superb and you can download them to iPlayer. So I am not starved of quality.
The Philadelphia Orchestra stream from an empty concert Hall last Thursday was stunning in every way as I previously reported.

So there is no longer any excuse to be cluttering the web with lousy low bit rate Internet radio streams.
 
Pogre

Pogre

Audioholic Warlord
My goodness, I just tried a local radio station and a song was playing I have on FLAC so I saw an opportunity to A/B between it and the radio.

I had to turn it up 8 dB just to roughly level match and still it's no contest. Lacked bass... lacked everywhere. Yuck.
 

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