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I'm currently looking towards my next project of starting a new server/streamer digital playback system. This will either be something like the Sony HAP-Z1 or running a Synology NAS with a player/streamer. I came across the Cary DMS-500 but I can't find anything on it. Anyone have knowledge of it? Any good?
Thanks for the Cary info. I'm glad to hear that you like it quite a bit. It's one on my short list as is the Melco N1A server and Naim UnitiCore. I only wished Cary have made the DMS tubed. Oh well.
I'd prefer a one box like the Sony but I agree they need to update it with some improvements!! While I could get it done cheaper by retiring my aged MacBook Pro I'd still need a new HDD, DAC, or a USB to S/PDIF converter, a good USB cable, etc. I've thought about going that route. I still may. I haven't seen exactly what I want as yet.
I have the dms 500 and to my ears it's hands down the best I have heard digital done. It takes a direct Ethernet connection which to my ears is superior to USB. The unit also fully decodes Mqa then upsamples it to 768. Red book with the simolicity of a click can be upsamoled anywhere up to 768 as well convert std red book to Dsd 256 if one chooses. I have had ultra expensive dacs including Ayre and aesthetix and to my ears this is award winning digital played through the dms-just my 2 cents
The Cary is $5000 but IMHO there are many other outstanding network streamers out there for well under $5000 from established brands as well as innovative newcomers. Additionally, since digital technology and features in this area are moving at a fast pace, I would be reluctant to part with a huge sum of cash for a streamer at this point.
But.... I would still lean toward a NAS / Network Streamer setup vs the proprietary Sony. The Sony is long in the tooth and way overdue for a refresh. The NAS / Network Streamer will be more flexible allowing you to stream to multiple network streamers of different brands and price points throughout your home, or allow you to try various newer network streamers over time while keeping your music infrastructure intact (on your NAS).
I run a Mac Mini 'music server' direct to my DAC in the office system but the Mac Mini also doubles as a NAS when I stream music over the network to my $640 microRendu down in the basement.
The tiny microRendu doesn't even have a pretty display like the Sony or Cary but that's not an issue for most people. We use iPads or other tablets to navigate our music libraries with a variety of Apps suited to one's preferences. I happen to use Roon.
ALL OF THIS, for much less than $5000 including the computer/NAS, screen (iPad), and streamer.
microRendu Network Streamer with iPad remote control running Roon App
microRendu moved to basement system driving PS Audio DAC. Carry my iPad down to the basement to control it.
Mac Mini in office system direct attached to DAC and acting as a NAS for streaming music to microRendu
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