What Data Infrastructure And Software Are You Using For HDTracks And Other Hi-Res Downloads?

Discussion in 'Audio Hardware' started by Lemon Curry, Feb 9, 2019.

  1. Lemon Curry

    Lemon Curry (A) Face In The Crowd Thread Starter

    Location:
    Mahwah, NJ
    I'm inching closer and closer to saying sayonara to CD's and MP3 downloads, and diving completely into the Hi-Res download market.

    But.. I am still digitally in an MP3 mindset. I use itunes, backed up on google drive. I don't think that's the model I want. Further, I am simply running my computer output thru an inexpensive D/A to my amp. This is not gonna deliver the goods for 96/24. Nor do I think my computer I/O is fast enough.

    What is YOUR Hi-Res download set up, and what recommendations would you make for computer, storage, tools, backups, D/A, etc?
     
  2. c-eling

    c-eling Somehow I See There Are Ships In Her Eyes...

    Quite a few topics with this inquiry have been done with some great recs.
    There are many ways at different price points to get this done.
    Checkout out the Bluesound Node
    Bluesound Node 2i
    For my lossless of old cd mastering's and 96's of LP/12 inch/7 and 10's I do-
    PC (Logitech Media Server)-->Router-->Squeezebox Touch-->Emotiva DC-1-->Receiver
    Controlled by a Amazon Fire 7 tablet :)
     
  3. vinylontubes

    vinylontubes Forum Resident

    Location:
    Katy, TX
    I was playing 24 bit 96 kHz files over 20 years ago. I did have a hi-end computer I built myself. But, I tend to think anything made today is superior the an overclocked Pentium with 4 MB of RAM. The card was outputting analog, so the bus was PCI. USB 3 is a way faster bus than that. USB 2 is faster than the older PCI bus. If your computer has USB 2, the white ports, it's fast enough.
     
    mando_dan likes this.
  4. Lemon Curry

    Lemon Curry (A) Face In The Crowd Thread Starter

    Location:
    Mahwah, NJ
    What are you running media server on, and how are you storing/backing up your data?
     
  5. c-eling

    c-eling Somehow I See There Are Ships In Her Eyes...

    PC, 6TB external. The transfers I make are backed up on a separate. I'd really hate to have to do them all over again :laugh:
    Most of the Hi-Rez I have I bought from Qobuz, so if I loose them I can re-download. The more rare one's like the uncompressed Fleetwood Mac's HDTracks' (2011) are backed up as well since they don't let you re-download.
    I think most of the modern streamers have apps you can use, and some a remote. If using an app a wireless router is going to be needed. You can use an old re purposed phone, or like in my case a cheap tablet. (bigger screen)
     
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2019
  6. Lemon Curry

    Lemon Curry (A) Face In The Crowd Thread Starter

    Location:
    Mahwah, NJ
    I guess one of the things I'm digging for is how folks are doing data management. Leveraging the cloud, or redundant storage at home, etc. Since all my files will begin exponentially increasing in size compared to mp3, I need a data strategy that goes beyond my simple, occasional itunes backup to google.
     
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  7. Lemon Curry

    Lemon Curry (A) Face In The Crowd Thread Starter

    Location:
    Mahwah, NJ
    So the 6TB external is the backup to your internal?
     
  8. c-eling

    c-eling Somehow I See There Are Ships In Her Eyes...

    My internal is pretty small, so I went with a outboard. I have a second smaller one for the necessities. I'm not sure how well it would work pulling sizable lossless files from a cloud based storage system.
    @Ham Sandwich is pretty good with this stuff, he may have some good advice :cheers:
     
  9. wwaldmanfan

    wwaldmanfan music junkie

    Location:
    NJ, USA
    Redundant storage at home. Approx. 2,000 albums in lossless, uncompressed AIFF format on 2TB FireWire external HDD's x 4. Two in use, one in a fire-resistant safe, and one additional just because I have it. I have no use for "the Cloud". Don't want to require wifi or internet to access my own music, whatever the circumstances.

    BTW, you are not going to hear much difference between redbook and 24/96 from the same mastering, unless you have a 10K+ system and/or golden ears. Many hi-res downloads are of unknown provenance. A few have better SQ than older CD releases, but many hi-res remasters are compressed and brickwalled, and sound horrible. But you already knew that, so replacing your old CD's with hi-res downloads is a crap-shoot.
     
    c-eling likes this.
  10. elvisizer

    elvisizer Forum Resident

    Location:
    San Jose
    it really just depends on your network speed, and high res audio doesn't need a ton. if you've got broadband it should be fine.
    I've streamed my own collection to myself using Roon and a VPN running on my Mac mini and I've only got like 10 Mbps upstream.
     
    c-eling likes this.
  11. c-eling

    c-eling Somehow I See There Are Ships In Her Eyes...

    Good info! I wasn't sure based on how good the cloud servers were, if there were any hiccups that could occur on their end.
     
  12. elvisizer

    elvisizer Forum Resident

    Location:
    San Jose
    I work as a site reliability engineer at a company that sells services that run entirely in the cloud (AWS and Azure now, GCP soon . . anyone want to commiserate with me over Terraform bugs and Ansible annoyances? lol) and generally the cloud provider is the not going to be an issue- their entire business models are built around high availability and reliability- like 5 9's of reliability.
    you're much more likely to have network problems than cloud provider problems.
     
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  13. Kyhl

    Kyhl formerly known

    Location:
    Savage
    You've got that right. :laugh:

    Over the winter I'm the DBA for our home network. Upgraded from a laptop and OneDrive to a QNAP and NUC this year. Amazing how small computers are. Forever they've been at least laptop size. Intel I5 with an m2 SSD, 16GB memory, in a 2.5" square box. I think the network switcher in the equipment rack is bigger than the new I5.

    To the OP, backup backup backup. At least backup backup. Whichever way you go, you won't want to do this twice or more.
    I keep the usable external drive in the NAS, one backup on site, and another backup off site. Can't afford to lose the files.
     
    Doug_B and c-eling like this.
  14. Ski Bum

    Ski Bum Happy Audiophile

    Location:
    Long Island, NY
    I use Roon with Roon Core running on a Roon Nucleus (which is just a custom NUC running Linux). I connect the Nucleus to my DAC/upsampler through a dedicated hard-wired network with certified Cat 6 ethernet cabling (cheap). The remote is an iPad connected to the network through wi fi. My storage is currently a big thumbdrive attached to the back of the Nucleus, but with this arrangement you can put an SSD in the Nucleus or put a NAS in the network. I currently stream using TIDAL integrated into Roon, and plan to try Qobuz the same way when I can get cleared for the beta test. The sound is excellent.
     
  15. Lemon Curry

    Lemon Curry (A) Face In The Crowd Thread Starter

    Location:
    Mahwah, NJ
    I totally agree. With my ELAC F5's I hear a big difference between CD's and 96/24 coming off a bluray - with different mastering.

    The easiest example is the Beatles White Album remix bluray which is less compressed than the CD. Another would be the Steve Wilson XTC remix blurays. I actually listen to the original mixes on those disks, which are superior to the CDs I've had for years.

    But I am very aware that compressed 96/24 files won't make me happy.

    My motivations are to get in step with the times. CDs are dying, so I don't want to buy more. I'm seeing my library convert to a great big pile of lossless files.
     
  16. Apesbrain

    Apesbrain Forum Resident

    Location:
    East Coast, USA
    My server PC runs headless 24/7 in the hall closet where it is wired to my main switch. It operates Win 7 on an i3 with 4GB of RAM. Inside is a small SSD for the system and applications, and a 3TB hard drive for my music library (mostly FLAC, some 24/96; plus a few MP3). Accessible from the front of the server PC is a door for a second 3TB hard drive. It looks like this:

    [​IMG]

    Whenever I add/change content on my primary music drive, I manually run FreeFileSync to mirror it to the second drive. This can also be automated. In doing so I always have a local backup, if needed. Once a month, I run Acronis Backup to copy an image of my system SSD to the secondary HD. I then turn off the server PC and remove the second drive. I physically walk it to my safe deposit box and exchange it with another identical 3TB drive. I bring that drive home, slide it into the door above, power up the server PC, run FreeFileSync, and start the monthly cycle anew. Have been doing this for years. If 3TB isn't enough for your collection, then 3.5" drives are now available up to 6TB.

    This "infrastructure" costs whatever a safe deposit box rents for in your area; for me it's $63/year. Compare that to the price of 3TB of storage on AWS or Carbonite and you'll appreciate the savings and a little exercise.
     
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  17. Gaslight

    Gaslight Kokomo or My Ding-a-Ling : Shoulda been a poll

    Location:
    Northeast USA
    Just get a decent DAC.

    My main PC is going on a decade old now and it runs 24/96 high-res just fine.
     
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  18. Jon1969

    Jon1969 Ozark Hillbilly

    Location:
    Missouri
    As already mentioned...

    Get a safety deposit box and keep a backup in it. Don't think an insurance company will give you a dime for your music that went up in smoke with your house.

    Where you live a box could be expensive. Leave a backup with a trusted relative or friend. You could put that in a cheap lockable box if it makes ya feel better.
     
    Lemon Curry likes this.
  19. BayouTiger

    BayouTiger Forum Resident

    Location:
    New Orleans
    I think a QNAP or Synology NAS running the Roon core is pretty hard to beat.
     
    stetsonic likes this.
  20. Lemon Curry

    Lemon Curry (A) Face In The Crowd Thread Starter

    Location:
    Mahwah, NJ
    This is what I'm talking about! Thanks for this detailed reply.
     
  21. Brother_Rael

    Brother_Rael Forum Resident

    Location:
    Scottish Borders
    This doesn't need over thinking. Regular computer or Mac of your choice. External HDD or NAS. Audio doesn't need huge bandwidth, even for hi resolution files. I use EAC and Onkyo HF Player. Simple and uncluttered. A Western Digital external hard drive (4TB) and an i5 HP running Win 10.
     
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  22. quicksrt

    quicksrt Senior Member

    Location:
    City of Angels
    All of this has been covered in much more detail in easier to read threads, and other forums.

    Very slight and easy research would be best for a start.
     
    Brother_Rael likes this.
  23. Lemon Curry

    Lemon Curry (A) Face In The Crowd Thread Starter

    Location:
    Mahwah, NJ
    I did a cursory search on topic but didn't turn up what I was looking for. If you know of a good thread, please by all means point me to it.
     
  24. quicksrt

    quicksrt Senior Member

    Location:
    City of Angels
    You are going to have to read up in those threads to see what they offer. Not just look at ther thread titles.

    Look up Music Storage, Music Servers, JRiver, ripping collection, FLAC playback, and music files. Read them, spend a few months.
     
  25. Jon1969

    Jon1969 Ozark Hillbilly

    Location:
    Missouri
    Let me add a little more about the safety deposit box...I have two 1TB Western Digital Hard Drives. One sits in the safety deposit box and one sits next to my computer. One of the drives is black, the other red. If I were to go out today and buy 10 CDs and rip them to Flac, I would add them to one of my hard drives, then in the next couple days visit my safety deposit box and simply switch out the drives. The one I bring back home I would add everything back in that is missing. Repeat the process whenever.

    In reality, I have many backups as my collection is fairly small. At any point I would have copies on the two external hard drives, a copy on my laptop, a copy on the card in my DAP and a copy on a USB stick in a vehicle. I have between 250-300 CDs ripped to FLAC along with some high res at this point that will fit on a 128gb flash drive.
     

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