Originally Posted by rbohling
I have only scanned this thread, so hopefully this has not been answered before. I am looking as music server options and like everyone these days, price is an object. This looks to be a good product and reviews have been good. My question is...If I rip all of my CDs and vinyl to a USB HDD, can I plug it directly into the USB port on the SBT? I know I can, but will the SBT directly control the content of the HDD, or do I have to stream it from a computer, which has the software installed.
Also, in my scanning of the thread, I saw some comment about the lack of bass in the audio reproduction. This was one of the cons I read in a review. They said the sound was much improved by utilizing the digital output vs. the analog.
I'm not entirely sure about running the Touch in "standalone" (without a server) since I haven't done it myself, but my understanding is it entirely possible...and by design in this release. At the very least, you can store the files on an USB drive, and you might have to run the server software from an SD card...but that still means no server.
As for better AQ utilizing the digital output...I guess that depends. Understand, using the digital output means you're bypassing the Touch's DAC and using something else. Now, if the review (and I haven't had the pleasure yet. I've been waiting on this month's Stereophile...maybe my subscription is up?) ran the Touch into a 4-digit DAC, or even the $400 DacMagic, or the $800 Decco2...or any really good-sounding external
DAC...then sure; you wouldn't be surprised to hear an improvement over the one in the $300 Touch. OTOH, if you were running it digitally into a $300 AVR, you might find the Touch's DAC to sound better.
I have to say, I'm kinda surprised; the buzz I had been hearing was that the Touch's DAC was really nice-sounding. IMO, the Classic/V3 had a very nice-sounding DAC, the Duet took a slight step back to my
ears; I thought the Touch was a bit of a return, but I actually haven't A/B'd mine the way I usually do. Life's too short, and I'm very happy with my Decco2 as DAC/Pre...so why futz?