Cambridge Audio Stream Magic 6? - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 13 Old 03-20-2012, 03:10 PM - Thread Starter
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Hey, all. Has anyone had a chance to play around with this or know when it will become available in the US?


http://www.cambridgeaudio.com/summary.php?PID=952

I am relatively new to digital music streaming/network devices, but this looks like it could be an awesome piece of equipment for those, like myself, who primarily play digital music. It's an upsampling streaming/network player, nice DAC and digital preamp with decent source connectivity... Sign me up! Right now, I use Apple TV or ipod dock with a bare bones Rotel stereo receiver, so this seems like the perfect item to squeeze a bit more quality out of my music. I did read somewhere that it is around $1000-1200 USD, which is a bummer. I pre-registered online, but I don't know when it will be available.

Thoughts? Does anyone have suggestions for alternatives?
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post #2 of 13 Old 03-21-2012, 07:13 AM
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Hi there,

Just to let you know that the Stream Magic 6 should be available towards the end of May. We don't have any information on a price, however, you can always contact our customer care centre directly for information on our products which is available on our website.

Hope this helps!

Regards,
CA
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post #3 of 13 Old 03-21-2012, 08:07 AM
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This product suffers from the same short-sightedness of all of the other "me too" products in it's genre. No HDMI out, therefore, no multichannel output and no hi-res digital output. No smb or ntfs support, so streaming is only as good as your upnp implementation. No DSD support. No MLP support, No .iso support.

These days, most processors do a great job with room correction, so analog out just gets redigitized anyway. Why do analog out unless you have a perfect room?
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post #4 of 13 Old 03-21-2012, 03:11 PM - Thread Starter
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Wow, glad to hear directly from CA. Thanks for the response. I look forward to seeing the SM6 in person.
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post #5 of 13 Old 03-21-2012, 05:46 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mlknez View Post

This product suffers from the same short-sightedness of all of the other "me too" products in it's genre. No HDMI out, therefore, no multichannel output and no hi-res digital output. No smb or ntfs support, so streaming is only as good as your upnp implementation. No DSD support. No MLP support, No .iso support.

These days, most processors do a great job with room correction, so analog out just gets redigitized anyway. Why do analog out unless you have a perfect room?

Thanks for the input. Again, I'm relatively new to this technology, so most of the input you've offered is well over my head. I've done a bit of research to figure out the significance of this, but, apparently I still need some enlightenment.

I guess what I'm trying to figure out is the best way to get the best sound for stereo music, in this case wirelessly, as simply as possible. I will only use this system for stereo music or occasional movie/TV. The Stream Magic 6 seems to fit the bill. Let me explain:

My setup:

-Rotel stereo receiver: unfortunately it only has analog inputs, so I figured the analog outs work just fine. I only have bookshelfs and a sub and don't use it for video output.
-iPhone, iPad, HP laptop (iTunes, WMP only)
-Apple TV
-Apple dock or Apple Composite AV Cable directly to iPhone/iPad
-PS3: Sparingly used for audio. HDMI to TV, audio output from TV to receiver. I don't care much about amazing movie sound.
-DirecTV

I use mostly MP3, AAC, satellite/internet streaming, Netflix, Hulu, rarely Blu-rays and will start storing lossless audio on a computer or hard drive. I figured the SM6 integrates everything, works as a pre-amp (kinda) and will improve sound if it works as claimed.

So, should I be concerned about anything that the SM6 is "lacking?" Will it do anything to significantly improve the sound or do I need to alter/improve my sources (filetypes, etc)? Is there anything else out there that I should consider?

Anything helps. Thanks.
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post #6 of 13 Old 03-21-2012, 06:07 PM
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Look at the Logitech Squeezebox and the Sonos...

http://www.sonos.com/

and

http://www.logitech.com/en-us/speake...-music-systems

both are very mature and been out for a long time. you can read tons about both these systems here on AVS.

I would recommend an airport express but the analog outputs on it dont measure well at all. They roll of the highs. If you had toslink then that would be a different story.

both the Logitech and Sonos have good quality analog outputs.

they both offer a wider variety of internet radio and subscription service options

and some features of features the CA unit doesn't offer.

The CA unit as you note is a bit of a pre-amp as well.

With what you have now you plug in the Sonos or Squeezebox into your analog input and your done.
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post #7 of 13 Old 03-22-2012, 11:06 PM
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Adding to Sean's comment: the Squeezebox Touch is also much less expensive than anything from CA.

P.S. Don't take this the wrong way, but aren't you overdue for a receiver upgrade? After all, all the sources you listed are digital. Why keep buying DACs?
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post #8 of 13 Old 04-09-2012, 04:04 PM
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* I spoke with the U.S. rep on the phone on it's capabilities> I told him I have a dac-magic and it sounds great, and I asked how the newer dac magic / streeam magic 6 will perform> he simply stated that the stream magic 6 will make the original Dac Magic sound "Broken"?...lol...couldn't believe he put down one of the most decent affordable dacs on the market.

I still havn't seen anthing more on the internet yet...should be available this month or possibly May> but eagerly await it's introduction into the market.
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post #9 of 13 Old 06-18-2012, 04:06 PM
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anyone have one of these yet?

interested to hear some real world reviews, especially using a USB hard drive directly connected.

what hifi posted their review today - five stars

http://www.whathifi.com/review/cambridge-audio-stream-magic-6

Paradigm Studio 100 Floorstanding Loudspeakers
REL R505 Subwoofer
Marantz PM8004 Integrated
Marantz SA8004 SACD
Rega P6 Turntable
Rega Exact 2 Cartridge
Cambridge Audio StreamMagic 6
Salamander Archetype 5.0 Equipment Rack
Chord ChameleonPlus, CobraPlus interconnect RCA
Legend Audio Bi-Wire...
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post #10 of 13 Old 08-21-2012, 05:23 PM
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* Well after seeing the prototype unit back in Jan 2012> I've waited all year for it to actually become availble, (local dealer never heard of it until last month sometime)...I needed to replace my grace digital internet radio tuner with something more mature and inviting(not that it was bad)...as well as replace my Dac Magic....and so here comes the Stream Magic 6 ALL IN ONE!...Media streamer and Internet radio player>>> I can say first off that the unit is very snappy and responsive, and is a very solid build> there is hardly any noticeable delay when tuning into radio stations (VIA wifi) ...128kbps Stations sound fantastic...with a deep rich and wide immersive sound, that isn't complicated by it's low bandwidth at all> the 382khz Dac and DSP processing makes it sound immersive and rich tonaly. I can't go into great detail on the sonics of the unit right now because I am in the process of upgrading my Amp/receiver to a better one that puts out more than 60 watts per-channel(my technics amp is great but can sound harsh, tinny and slightly weakl on certain source material. Great news for audiophiles> although I havn't tested the rear USB port with streaming audio files from my Mac Mini> I can say I've tested the front USB port with some suprise...it accepts 24bit 96khz WAV audio files...I've got a software program that up samples music audio files to any format> and it does so greatly...although I can't go into the noticable effect of hi res files(escpecially done with software) but I can say that the unit reads them with no errors or stopped playback at all> my opp93 likes to stick sometimes when playback hires files...I've purchased Verbatims tiny USB flash drive 16gb + 32gb for really cheap on e-bay> these flash drives are very handy when you want to create a quick mix with your latest music tunes...the Stream magic locked onto the usb and immedialy showed all 20-30 hi res 24bit 96khz files that where on it...I scroll through the list via the front panels control knob and locked and played instantly> I've also tinkered with the ipad app that is alaso now availble> and it as well is very snappy and responsive> files show up almost immediatly after boot up> and playback starts quickly. * I havn't tried flac files with the unit yet but assume it is just as responsive with those types of files as well> I am looking forward to upgrading my amp/receiver so I can immerse myself with more acoustic testing with the unit. Overall the unit is very convenient> it allows you to stream your entire music library through it and play with thousands of internet stations it has available +plus the sophisticated DSP+DAC that sound wonderfull> other streamers I've researched on such as Nad 446 have too many issues to waste $800, simply the unit was broke when it came to market and it has remained broke since then> Cambridge audio was better waiting to improve production of the unit before they released it, and they have done a decent job of it>>>I did notice on my purchase of a first stream magic the the feet where not sitting properly on my rack and the units cover was indented slightly above the display (straight from manufacturer possibly caused this)returned for a another model that didn't have that issue? it also has a slightly loud relay click sound whne you power up the unit's front standby button but havn'e delved into it's idle option in the menu...other wise this unit is great cosmetically and feature.
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post #11 of 13 Old 08-22-2012, 02:53 PM
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* It accepts 24bit 96KHZ USB Audio Files!!!!!!





The off angle viewing of the display is not the best in the dark , lots of back light bleed through, straight of site is better, a fully lit room and the display is good at what you need to know> it shows the elapsed time as the file is playing, and tons of other information , something that was absolutely necessary to complete the feature package of the unit.
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post #12 of 13 Old 08-22-2012, 04:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shingdaz View Post





* It accepts 24bit 96KHZ USB Audio Files!!!!!!

The off angle viewing of the display is not the best in the dark , lots of back light bleed through, straight of site is better, a fully lit room and the display is good at what you need to know> it shows the elapsed time as the file is playing, and tons of other information , something that was absolutely necessary to complete the feature package of the unit.

Pretty unit, but you do realize that the $80 Netgear NT550 can do everything your unit can do and do 192khz/24bit/8channel audio as well! Not only that but it can read from ethernet and navigate by cover art. The popcorn hour and Dune Player can do this as well.
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post #13 of 13 Old 08-22-2012, 06:04 PM
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I guess this isn't the Official Stream Magic thread...rolleyes.gifcool.gif

I've learned you always get what you pay for. Cool gadget though.
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