• WANTED: Happy members who like to discuss audio and other topics related to our interest. Desire to learn and share knowledge of science required as is 20 years of participation in forums (not all true). There are daily reviews of audio hardware and expert members to help answer your questions. Click here to have your audio equipment measured for free!

Info. on new Matrix Audio mini-i

vlydog

Member
Joined
Mar 21, 2021
Messages
51
Likes
15
Wow, you are so generous and thorough; thank you.

I think it might be overkill for me. I am merely interested in an MQA supporting device to stream Tidal while benefitting from the best resolution possible. I was hoping to do that with the mini-1.

Without Roon, I don't know how to accomplish this.
 

mash

Member
Joined
Oct 8, 2020
Messages
80
Likes
149
Simple answer....

If you are ok with a wire (USB Cable) between your MacBook and DAC, then you can go with a USB DAC that supports MQA. The Mini-i will work (and have some additional features that you might use later) or you can save some money now and go with something like the SMSL M500.

More involved......

If you want to control playback on your MAC but don't want to deal with a cable connection to the DAC you will need a box that combines the DAC function with Tidal MQA streaming support. An example of this at the low end would be the Bluesound Node 2i (note the DACs in the Bluesound boxes aren't that great leading some to combine them with an outboard DAC....see Amir's review and long discussion thread). Some of the NAD boxes support it and I think some of the higher end Matrix Audio boxes like the Element M but then you are probably exceeding your original budget.
 

mdl

Member
Joined
Nov 12, 2020
Messages
87
Likes
35
Location
Uk
Simple answer....

If you are ok with a wire (USB Cable) between your MacBook and DAC, then you can go with a USB DAC that supports MQA. The Mini-i will work (and have some additional features that you might use later) or you can save some money now and go with something like the SMSL M500.

More involved......

If you want to control playback on your MAC but don't want to deal with a cable connection to the DAC you will need a box that combines the DAC function with Tidal MQA streaming support. An example of this at the low end would be the Bluesound Node 2i (note the DACs in the Bluesound boxes aren't that great leading some to combine them with an outboard DAC....see Amir's review and long discussion thread). Some of the NAD boxes support it and I think some of the higher end Matrix Audio boxes like the Element M but then you are probably exceeding your original budget.
great! the way out would be for matrix audio implementing either (preferably both) spotify connect (now that we have spotifi hi rs coming - but no mqa) and/or tidal connect. your matrix would turn into a proper streamer.
currently I'm satisfied with using an iphone 6 as a remote via airplay (44.1 kHz, no mqa) but no need to buy roon and a roon core.
 

mash

Member
Joined
Oct 8, 2020
Messages
80
Likes
149
I wouldn't count on Matrix implementing either Spotify or Tidal connect on the Mini-i Pro 3....despite a lot of calls for the functionality. They are currently looking at Spotify Connect across their entire line of streamers and there was a comment in the MA support forum (from the Matrix moderator) that it might be difficult to implement Spotify Connect on the Mini-i Pro 3 due to a lack of processing power in the box. I guess its still possible but I wouldn't bet on it........

https://matrix-digi.com/forums/showthread.php?tid=112

Nothing wrong with using Airplay to stream Spotify to the Mini-i. In fact, who's to say that Spotify HiRez will offer greater resolution than what Airplay can support. i.e. we don't know exactly what Spotify HiRez will be and/or Apple could enhance Airplay.

If you want to support Spotify connect today, you can get that by putting a Raspberry Pi running RoPieee XL (or other OS) in front of your Mini-i (or USB DAC). RoPieeeXL will handle the network duties and has support for Spotify connect (via an open source client). Your Mini-i wouuld still support a connection over Airplay and if someone eventually reverse engineers the Tidal connect client protocol, RoPieeeXL would likely also add that capability.
 
Last edited:

vlydog

Member
Joined
Mar 21, 2021
Messages
51
Likes
15
I wouldn't count on Matrix implementing either Spotify or Tidal connect on the Mini-i Pro 3....despite a lot of calls for the functionality.

This was Matrix Audio's response to my inquiry:
"Sorry, we do not have a plan to integrate Tidal Connect for current products for now."
 

mdl

Member
Joined
Nov 12, 2020
Messages
87
Likes
35
Location
Uk
Hi Just a quick update. My mini found a new caring home. I've upgraded (only temporarily) with a Lumin D2 for my main system and a Gold Note D-10 for my headphone setting (I think the Lumin will go). Now despite both of these streamers are FAR more technically and sonically capable (Driving NAS, Spotify Connect, etc), I do have a HUGE respect for the Mini ... I compared it to the new comers and it is still a stupendous little wonder. I confess I was somewhat sceptical selecting a ChiFi machine...but hey, I was wrong. There are things the Mini can do others can't and its practicality (the front 4.4.mm balanced input is a real killer so much so that Naim had to do a Uniti Atom version for headphones with that to respond to the Matrix Mini pro, Element I,M,X and Mytek Bridge etc). Plus it's REALLY smooth...the treble is very delicate and i have used it for hours non stop.
I'm curious to see the next Matrix I,M,,X generation...

pro: practicality, sonics,timbre, implementations, robustness, constructions, easiness -the 4.4mm balanced front input, the great OLED screen, customer support, Roon certification, number of input and outputs, the remote, its stability, the ability to drive difficult cans like my HD800.

cons: lack of tidal and spotify connect, driving NAS, lack of HDMI ARC (all of which can be found in higher price point headphone amp/streamers)
 
Top Bottom