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You who have several sound systems, what do you listen to the most?

sarumbear

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Byrdsmaniac

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I mostly listen to CDs and some LPs in the living room and a lesser amount of the same in the TV room. What little streaming I do is almost all YouTube. I do a small amount of listening to CD and FM in the bedroom.

I've tried various streaming options, but haven't felt any real enthusiasm for any of them. I have enough music on disc to keep me interested and YouTube is good enough to find things that I might want to add to my collection or I might only feel like listening to on rare occasions. I also use my phone to listen to onboard playlists and podcasts while I hike, bike, or kayak. This is what works for me. I don't need access to millions of songs and I don't listen to all that much pop music anymore. My wife has Spotify, but I never use it.
 

sarumbear

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MattHooper

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I guess it depends on what specifically counts as a different sound system (for instance, I often use different speakers in the same system...) but...

Generally speaking, for the "big listening rigs" I have two systems, in the same renovated room:

1. Dedicated 2 channel music system: Thiel 2.7/Joseph Audio Perspective speakers, CJ tube amps/preamp/Benchmark preamp, Transrotor Fat Bob S turntable/Benz Micro Ebony L cartridge, Benchmark DAC2L...etc.

2. Surround system for home theater: Denon AV receiver powering Hales Transcendence L/C/R speakers, Monitor Audio surrounds.

My go to is the dedicated 2 channel system. It does all the "audiophile things" like 3D imaging, image specificity and is finely honed to the characteristics I like in music playback.

But I also listen fairly often to music in my surround system (upmixed) - it might be from youtube videos or more these days, Apple music. The tracks on Apple music sound incredible in the surround system. When I access itunes/apple music via my home theater system, the tracks on Apple music, which come up with lyrics and cover art, sound incredible. So good I've been wondering if some of the apple music content has been slightly re-jigged to sound better (?)

Otherwise listening while driving is my other favorite way of enjoying music. I'm not in to car audio per se, no aftermarket fiddling. I just made sure to choose the better sound system with each car and that's good enough. There's something about driving, especially a road trip, that allows me to loose myself in the music.
 

usersky

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I have four rooms with sound systems. Most used by far is my home office:
spotify/rpi3 moode -> minidsp flex+dirac -> yamaha ax640 - kef r3 (for now)

followed by my bedroom:
TV or spotify/marantz 1508 -> 2xelac dbr6.2+ kef q350 center
 

Phorize

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Almost always Spotify due to its search facilities, suggested tracks & playlists. If I’m listening jazz or classical albums then Apple Music lossless.

As soon as Spotify offers lossless I will cancel the Apple Music subscription. It has awful UI. Unlike the accepted belief Apple doesn’t care about UX.
I couldn’t believe how bad the Apple Music ui was when I tried it. Like having a ticket to a museum full of masterpieces but only being allowed to view them through a keyhole.
 

Phorize

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Then you might have to think about whether it's worth paying $19.99 a month, which it is rumored that Spotify lossless will cost. If it ever comes, Spotify lossless that is. Why should you now pay double for Spotify lossless compared to what, I think, Apple lossless costs? In addition, Apple lossless now exists.;)
.."awful UI".., maybe worth paying extra to avoid?

This is just a survey Spotify did recently, for someone, or some people/users :
https://www.reddit.com/r/truespotify/comments/y3zz63
Headphone tuner sounds like eq. Yay.
 

DMill

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I’m 95% iTunes in both my systems. I work from home and have an office with a Cary Tube amp integrated, a schiit DAC and stream from my phone. This gets probably more use than my “better” system because I basically have music on most of the day. But it is background music as I’m concentrating on work. My main system is Yamaha AS1100 and Topping DAC. I have a 20 year old Denon 2910 player and will occasionally put on a CD. The problem with this is it’s in the same room as the XBox and on the main floor. So unless I tell the kids to buzz off or no one is home I’m rarely able really crank it and enjoy it as much as I’d like. Wish I liked headphones more, but I just hate them. One day I’ll finish the basement, but damn that is some serious money, and I’m not talking about the cost of gear. Just the quote for an egress was $7k

Edit: and yes the Apple interface mostly sucks, but they tend to change things every 6 months, so here’s hoping. :)
 

DMill

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Or Hotel California.:)
God. There is a live version they keep playing on my favorite SiriusXM station in my car. Needless to say I’m considering selling the car.
 

restorer-john

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This happens when you allow Apple to replace your tracks in your library with higher quality versions where exists, which is almost always. It seems in your case not all of the replaced tracks were downloaded. When you cancel your subscription you can no longer download them and they are greyed out. However, if you download all your library before cancelling the tracks will stay playable.

This is what I have observed on a few friends libraries. Please correct me if my explanation is wrong.

Apple is like the Mob: once in you can’t get out without consequences.

That description is enough to keep me away from Apple Music.
 

JayGilb

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About 90% on a basement Plex server which handles both video and audio. I work from home and will put on something fairly benign like Ambient at a very low level.
I have 2.1 system on my screened veranda which is used only during May - October. Mostly Plex, but been digging a few TuneIn channels.
 

DMill

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About 90% on a basement Plex server which handles both video and audio. I work from home and will put on something fairly benign like Ambient at a very low level.
I have 2.1 system on my screened veranda which is used only during May - October. Mostly Plex, but been digging a few TuneIn channels.
I’d be curious about your impressions of the Plex? I don’t know many who use it as a solution.
 

likesBass

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I couldn’t believe how bad the Apple Music ui was when I tried it. Like having a ticket to a museum full of masterpieces but only being allowed to view them through a keyhole.
Yeah feels like being crippled, search doesn't know what i want, it takes ages, ux is weird, but it sounds sooooo much better than spotify :(
 

jhaider

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In order of use time:

For general/background/social music listening: desk/nearfield stereo, desk/nearfield headphones, family room immersive, bedroom stereo/"spatial" (OG HomePods), car, kitchen ceiling speakers, living room stereo.

For focused music listening: family room immersive, desk/nearfield stereo and desk/nearfield headphones likely tied, living room stereo

Sources for all are Apple Music or (much less) local files or multichannel DVD-A/SACD disks, except for car where it's Spotify until Tesla finally supports Apple Music and I can drop it. Vinyl as well in the stereo room.

Irony is the least-used system has the most expensive single pair of speakers!
 

DMill

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Irony is the least-used system has the most expensive single pair of speakers!
Possibly worthy of another thread, but true in my case also. I guess you play your “money” speaker when it matters. But lifestyle speakers have a place in a music lovers home. I suppose if you have no concerns about money just buy SOTA everything so you can jam to Mozart while taking a poop.
 

anotherhobby

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I’d be curious about your impressions of the Plex? I don’t know many who use it as a solution.
I use Plex for my local digital audio/video hosting. I've been using it for probably a decade. I highly recommend it if you have that as a need. They have a desktop audio player called plexamp that is wonderfully minimalist and small in the UI, yet very well featured. Controls show up on hover. Here is a pic:
Screen Shot 2022-11-23 at 3.50.36 PM.png
 

Open Mind Audio

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Regarding music, not home cinema.

I see this in front of me. A system consisting of a vintage amp, maybe vintage speakers and turntables VS modern with well performing class D amp, modern speakers and lossless streaming. If you have these two solutions, what do you listen to the most?

Of course, it doesn't have to be exactly that combination, the question applies generally. It may even be that you mostly listen to the car stereo (you may be out on the road a lot in connection with your job therefore car stereo), or with headphones paired with your mobile phone, or...and so on.:)

I have a friend who listens mostly to his crappy "HiFi" solution he has in the basement because it's his free time when he's tinkering with his projects. Otherwise, he spends most of his time with his family and then there is not much listening to music. So there are of course different variations on how to listen to music.:)

Edit:
Here for example.

I see a tape recorder in the picture, but I'm almost 100% sure that that person also uses some lossless streaming provider (Qobuz if I remember correctly).
Clue about whose HiFi solution it is: That person usually tests and measures a lot of HiFi related stuff ::)
View attachment 245523
Got a Sonos in 2006, and my whole family has been 95% streaming ever since. My wife and kids are streaming on the Sonos and phone (of course), I stream high-res and CD quality downloads and streaming on both my 2-ch audio setup and a multi channel HT/audio set up.

I have all the analog stuff too, and it’s fun, but the sound quality is just as good from the high-end digital chain (and good enough for the other family members on Sonos), and the convenience is astoundingly better.

The main result has been that my wife and I listen to music a whole lot more, and of course my kids know nothing but digital except for my throwback 8 track player and some occasional hipster vinyl.

It used to be the streaming services had theoretically lower audio quality, not anymore. Unless you live in a cabin without Internet access, or have very particular feelings about technology, you are likely to prefer digital by a wide margin.
 

jhaider

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Possibly worthy of another thread, but true in my case also. I guess you play your “money” speaker when it matters. But lifestyle speakers have a place in a music lovers home. I suppose if you have no concerns about money just buy SOTA everything so you can jam to Mozart while taking a poop.

In our specific case, it's basically aesthetics. The speakers are not a feature of the family room, and it's designed more for utility than style. Their job is to perform and get out of the way. So extremely high performance studio monitors with indifferent-quality flat black paint (JBL 708i) work brilliantly as LCR speakers. The speakers in the living room are part of the room's aesthetic, and the zone of the Venn diagram for high performance speakers of elegant design that can go very close to a wall contains very few options. With our Revel Gem2 now EOL, I'm not sure if there is even a current production model that fits. Maybe GGNTKT?

Sound quality wise I think the immersive setup sounds better than the stereo setup, so it's my first choice! Part of that is greater room symmetry - in our case the living room is part of an open concept floorplan, and the family room is more of a classic shoebox. But also the recorded ambience just comes across better with an immersive setup than a stereo setup.
 
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