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Advice on new Amp + Streamer + Room Correction DSP

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#1
Hi everyone,

I'd like to upgrade from my Denon X4100 AVR to a new amp/streamer/room correction solution and like to hear your advice on which way to go.
I couldn't decide at which sub-forum this thread fits best, so I hope this sub-forum is okay.

My speakers are a pair of Monitor Audio PL200 together with a 12" Merovinger Audio subwoofer.
My listening room is an approximately 30 square meter living room without any special acoustic treatments.

My budget would be up to 2,5-3k Euro, but I wouldn't be sad if I had to spend less.

Sources:
I'm using my system for listening to music as well as watching movies. My priority however is on listening music.
I'm mostly streaming from Spotify but want to add either Qobuz oder Tidal which isn't supported by my current AVR. I hardly use my CD player anymore, simply because it is so convenient to control the music via app. Another thing which I wouldn't want to miss is internet radio.
What is definitely important to me is good usability in everyday use. I do not want to have to fiddle around just to stream some music. I wouldn't mind a cumbersome setup routine, but in everyday use it should come close to a no brainer. I don't want to get annoyed too often about things that don't work and I would also have a hard time to justify my purchase to my wife, who also uses the system regularly.

Room Correction:
As my setup is in the living room, I only have limited possibilities on acoustic optimizations regarding the room. To me, room correction brings major improvements.
I'm currently using Audyssey XT32, but my AVR is too old to support the app which allows adjusting the target curve. This is also one of the main reasons why I want to upgrade my system. I'm not a big fan of the provided target curves. I recently learned about the Dynamic EQ (thanks to this forum) which improved things, but I'm not completely satisfied.
Now that I'm planning to upgrade my system I'm thinking about switching to Dirac. I'm hoping that Dirac could do even a bit better than Audyssey+App. What do you think about this? I think the question of whether to go with Audyssey or Dirac will be the key differentiator in choosing the hardware I'll upgrade to.

Amp:
I am not sure about how much power I really need. My speakers are 4 ohms with a sensitivity of 90db. The manufacturer states recommended amplifier requirements of 100 - 250 W. To my naive thinking any amp with up to 250 W watts, such as a Hypex NC252MP, would be just right. Is this correct? If so, I'm thinking of something like the Audiophonics HPA-S250NC.
410monitor.Mapfig1.jpg

Here are my current candidates for the Dirac vs Audyssey path (german retail prices).

Dirac Options:
a) NAD C658 (~1500 Euro) + Hypex Ncore 250W (~700 Euro)
b) Minidsp SHD (~1700 Euro) + Hypex Ncore 250W (~700 Euro)
c) NAD M10 (~2900 Euro)
The NAD C658 seems to check all the boxes. Although the SHD measures fantastically I'm concerned about it's usability in every day use. With the M10, I'm now sure if it has enough power output.

Audyssey Options:
a) Denon X4700 (~1400 Euro)
b) Denon X3700 (~1000 Euro) + Hypex Ncore 250W (~700 Euro)
Would the power of X4700 be sufficient. Would you expect any improvement with the X3700 plus separate amp?

Overall, I'm currently leaning towards the C658 + Hypex amp.
 

tw99

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#2
The SHD is fine for every day use, it's just setting it up in the first place that takes time.

It has a special version of Volumio integrated in it, so you would need to check if that supports what you need.

I use logitech media server as my streaming solution, and that has a plugin that allows output via the Volumio dlna client, so I don't rely on much of the embedded capability.
 

Glasvegas

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#3
If you want to stream from Tidal and “don’t want to get annoyed too often about things that don’t work”, you should avoid Volumio. It’s Tidal integration is poor.
 
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OP
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Thread Starter #4
Some say everything works smoothly, some say it's struggle. In terms of usability, imho this usually is not a good sign. That's why I have doubts about the SHD.
 

Glasvegas

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#5
Volumio has Spotify Connect, so if you stick with Spotify you may be OK. In my opinion it’s a bit risky.

It‘s worth noting what is stated in the SHD manual under Network Audio section:

“Please note however that since Volumio and the other software mentioned in this chapter is third-party
software, miniDSP support for this software is limited.”

I used Volumio for a few months and eventually gave up and went back to casting Tidal to CCA.
 
OP
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Thread Starter #6
For such reasons, I think I'll skip the SHD.

Yesterday I was at a local hifi dealer, which I just recently discovered. He suggested to try the Lyngdorf TDAI 1120. Feature-wise it seems to match. It has "RoomPerfect" as it's room correction system which has been reviewed very positive by Amir. But I'm not sure if it has enough power to drive the speakers appropriately. It' specified with 120W at 4ohms.
What do you think about the TDAI 1120 compared to the other options?
 

abdo123

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#7
I would get Bluesound Node 2i and an external DAC (MQA DAC if you do Tidal).

You get spotify connect and Tidal connect so a very convenient solution.

Are you into DIY or you want an out of the box solution?
 

Glasvegas

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#8
Chromecast built-in, Spotify Connect, Airplay, Bluetooth. Seems well covered as far as streaming is concerned.
I notice the TDAI-3400 now has Tidal Connect. So that would be even better If the 1120 gets that.

I think the NAD products have all that too.

The big weakness with all of these products is always the software - no matter how expensive. Just check out any of the Matrix Audio threads on this forum. On the the other hand, BlueOS is very mature.

If it’s a local dealer I would ask to spend a few hours playing with the App.

Cant comment on sound quality, but I notice another member bought this unit.
https://audiosciencereview.com/forum/index.php?threads/lyngdorf-tdai-1120-questions.12549/page-2

Maybe you should send him a PM.
 
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#9
The SHD works well as a basic streaming solution but I personally use a Rpi4 plugged into its USB input as the rpi4 is much faster and I way prefer moode over the volumio interface that comes with the SHD. That works seamlessly and the SHD is an exceptional preamp/dsp/dac other than the volumio aspect. The wifi on it is shocking though, so bad that the only way I could get it to be stable was hard wiring it to a network extender. With it plugged in via network cable it is really really stable (as it should be). If this cannnot be an option for you then maybe move to another option, though there is really nothing that touches it for the price. I will say that using dirac has been the single greatest upgrade to my sound yet. Truly a night and day difference to what I had before. It is truly a cure for upgradeitis.
 

Chrise36

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#10
Tidal on Denon is not masters compatible. Would you consider something like a surface tablet or an android box to a touhscreen monitor?
 
OP
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Thread Starter #11
Thanks for all of your input.

I do not want to go with a custom-built solution. As Glasvegas mentioned, the big weakness with many solutions is their software. So I prefer to go with something that is generally considered stable. To me, BlueOs seems to be more mature than any RPi solution and likely to require less maintenance. Maybe SHD + Bluesound Node could be another option to consider (but would add 500 Euro to the price).

I can get the TDAI 1120 for a weekend to try at home. However I would also like to compare it with a Dirac based solution. Maybe I can get a C658 or M10 from anywhere else to also try at home. The SHD is not sold by any local dealer around.
 

Dj7675

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#12
Hi everyone,

I'd like to upgrade from my Denon X4100 AVR to a new amp/streamer/room correction solution and like to hear your advice on which way to go.
I couldn't decide at which sub-forum this thread fits best, so I hope this sub-forum is okay.

My speakers are a pair of Monitor Audio PL200 together with a 12" Merovinger Audio subwoofer.
My listening room is an approximately 30 square meter living room without any special acoustic treatments.

My budget would be up to 2,5-3k Euro, but I wouldn't be sad if I had to spend less.

Sources:
I'm using my system for listening to music as well as watching movies. My priority however is on listening music.
I'm mostly streaming from Spotify but want to add either Qobuz oder Tidal which isn't supported by my current AVR. I hardly use my CD player anymore, simply because it is so convenient to control the music via app. Another thing which I wouldn't want to miss is internet radio.
What is definitely important to me is good usability in everyday use. I do not want to have to fiddle around just to stream some music. I wouldn't mind a cumbersome setup routine, but in everyday use it should come close to a no brainer. I don't want to get annoyed too often about things that don't work and I would also have a hard time to justify my purchase to my wife, who also uses the system regularly.

Room Correction:
As my setup is in the living room, I only have limited possibilities on acoustic optimizations regarding the room. To me, room correction brings major improvements.
I'm currently using Audyssey XT32, but my AVR is too old to support the app which allows adjusting the target curve. This is also one of the main reasons why I want to upgrade my system. I'm not a big fan of the provided target curves. I recently learned about the Dynamic EQ (thanks to this forum) which improved things, but I'm not completely satisfied.
Now that I'm planning to upgrade my system I'm thinking about switching to Dirac. I'm hoping that Dirac could do even a bit better than Audyssey+App. What do you think about this? I think the question of whether to go with Audyssey or Dirac will be the key differentiator in choosing the hardware I'll upgrade to.

Amp:
I am not sure about how much power I really need. My speakers are 4 ohms with a sensitivity of 90db. The manufacturer states recommended amplifier requirements of 100 - 250 W. To my naive thinking any amp with up to 250 W watts, such as a Hypex NC252MP, would be just right. Is this correct? If so, I'm thinking of something like the Audiophonics HPA-S250NC.
View attachment 94866

Here are my current candidates for the Dirac vs Audyssey path (german retail prices).

Dirac Options:
a) NAD C658 (~1500 Euro) + Hypex Ncore 250W (~700 Euro)
b) Minidsp SHD (~1700 Euro) + Hypex Ncore 250W (~700 Euro)
c) NAD M10 (~2900 Euro)
The NAD C658 seems to check all the boxes. Although the SHD measures fantastically I'm concerned about it's usability in every day use. With the M10, I'm now sure if it has enough power output.

Audyssey Options:
a) Denon X4700 (~1400 Euro)
b) Denon X3700 (~1000 Euro) + Hypex Ncore 250W (~700 Euro)
Would the power of X4700 be sufficient. Would you expect any improvement with the X3700 plus separate amp?

Overall, I'm currently leaning towards the C658 + Hypex amp.
I’m an SHD user. I think it is an amazing product. But I also don’t think don’t have the broad appeal/ease of everyday use and setup that a C658 or the M10 would have. With the built in bluesound in both NAD, that sounds like a very good solution. I had the TDAI 3400 for a bit and it is another nice all in one simple solution. The Lyngdorf will win in ease of setup for sure. Roomperfect is very good and easy to set up.
 
OP
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Thread Starter #13
I’m an SHD user. I think it is an amazing product. But I also don’t think don’t have the broad appeal/ease of everyday use and setup that a C658 or the M10 would have. With the built in bluesound in both NAD, that sounds like a very good solution. I had the TDAI 3400 for a bit and it is another nice all in one simple solution. The Lyngdorf will win in ease of setup for sure. Roomperfect is very good and easy to set up.
Thanks for sharing your experience.
May I ask why you switched from the TDAI 3400 to the SHD? Can you draw a comparisons in terms of sound quality and dirac vs room perfect?
 

Dj7675

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#14
Thanks for sharing your experience.
May I ask why you switched from the TDAI 3400 to the SHD? Can you draw a comparisons in terms of sound quality and dirac vs room perfect?
At the time I had a McIntosh integrated amp (200w). I didn't feel the amps drove my speakers well enough. Loved the room correction though.
 

Panelhead

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#15
If I only wanted an integrated with Room Correction the TDAI-1120 would be first choice. All the other features and capabilities are gravy with the meat.
 
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