Best method for playing music from external HDD? - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 23 Old 05-09-2020, 12:44 AM - Thread Starter
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Best method for playing music from external HDD?

Does it require a network player or is there a simpler, less expensive solution? My music setup is outlined in my signature.

Home Theatre: Marantz SR6014 | Polk Audio RTi A3 Front L/R | KEF Q650c Centre | KEF Q150 Surround L/R | HSU ULS-15 MK2 Subwoofer | Sony XBR55X900E | PS4 Pro | Xbox One S | Nintendo Switch | TBA: KEF Q750 Front L/R

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post #2 of 23 Old 05-09-2020, 01:34 AM
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What music file format? It may be able to be played from the USB port.
http://manuals.marantz.com/SR6014/EU...Ykxqlluoz.php#

For servers, I'm not too familiar with it, but there's probably several NAS options or maybe even one of the game consoles has an app that can do it.
Worst case, there's probably a Raspberry Pi option out there.
http://manuals.marantz.com/SR6014/EU...SYelkngxze.php

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Does it require a network player or is there a simpler, less expensive solution? My music setup is outlined in my signature.
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post #3 of 23 Old 05-09-2020, 01:42 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by philpoe View Post
What music file format? It may be able to be played from the USB port.
http://manuals.marantz.com/SR6014/EU...Ykxqlluoz.php#

For servers, I'm not too familiar with it, but there's probably several NAS options or maybe even one of the game consoles has an app that can do it.
Worst case, there's probably a Raspberry Pi option out there.
http://manuals.marantz.com/SR6014/EU...SYelkngxze.php
My music setup uses a Cambridge Audio AXR100. The Marantz is for my HT.

Home Theatre: Marantz SR6014 | Polk Audio RTi A3 Front L/R | KEF Q650c Centre | KEF Q150 Surround L/R | HSU ULS-15 MK2 Subwoofer | Sony XBR55X900E | PS4 Pro | Xbox One S | Nintendo Switch | TBA: KEF Q750 Front L/R

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post #4 of 23 Old 05-09-2020, 08:57 AM
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A network music player is the best way to play them and you may already own a suitable device. If you have a game console or streaming box that can run apps like Plex you can setup a server on your network pointed at your music and have the files playing rather quickly. Some Bluray players also can act as UPNP or DLNA endpoints and act as players too. If you don’t have a suitable device then a Raspberry Pi is a very cheap device that is simple to set up for this purpose. You can use your choice of quality USB DACS and a Raspberry Pi 3 with this image and be up and running in twenty minutes or less https://www.picoreplayer.org

You can easily control playback via a smartphone app and setup access to online services like Spotify, Tidal, Pandora and Tunein internet radio.


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post #5 of 23 Old 05-09-2020, 08:58 AM
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A simple solution is a laptop.
As the Cambridge has SPDIF input only, use a USB to SPDIF converter to connect the two.
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post #6 of 23 Old 05-09-2020, 09:41 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Roseval View Post
A simple solution is a laptop.
As the Cambridge has SPDIF input only, use a USB to SPDIF converter to connect the two.
Thanks, I'll look into getting a converter. I can use bluetooth from my computer, but it doesn't work the best!

Home Theatre: Marantz SR6014 | Polk Audio RTi A3 Front L/R | KEF Q650c Centre | KEF Q150 Surround L/R | HSU ULS-15 MK2 Subwoofer | Sony XBR55X900E | PS4 Pro | Xbox One S | Nintendo Switch | TBA: KEF Q750 Front L/R

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post #7 of 23 Old 05-09-2020, 10:06 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ryan Statz View Post
Thanks, I'll look into getting a converter. I can use bluetooth from my computer, but it doesn't work the best!
Ryan, I am using one of these from my htpc, way better then the onboard soundcard.
https://us.creative.com/p/sound-blas...rround-5-1-pro
I see they have a new one
https://us.creative.com/p/sound-blas...aster-x3#specs
Maybe more then you need though.
Got those 750 setup yet

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post #8 of 23 Old 05-09-2020, 11:41 AM
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*v8foreheadsmack* I read that umpteen times and still focused on the Marantz.

For the AXR100, an option may be an app-controlled device that can play from USB and output over optical.
The Sony SMP-N100 fits that description, and also has a remote (in case you have a learning one), and can stream from a DNLA server if you ever go that route.

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My music setup uses a Cambridge Audio AXR100. The Marantz is for my HT.
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post #9 of 23 Old 05-09-2020, 12:07 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sam_canavo View Post
Ryan, I am using one of these from my htpc, way better then the onboard soundcard.
https://us.creative.com/p/sound-blas...rround-5-1-pro
I see they have a new one
https://us.creative.com/p/sound-blas...aster-x3#specs
Maybe more then you need though.
Got those 750 setup yet
I have a MacBook Pro laptop, so I can't exchange any internal components, and I am not in the market to build a HTPC I think I'll look into the USB to SDIF/RCA adapter, and go that route in the meantime. A cleaner option, which I'd prefer, would be to just have an external plugged in, but I think it would require an extra component with some kind of display to navigate the files (cambridge audio's CXN, for example). If the adapter works, then I'll have no problem doing that instead, though!

Have not gotten the Q750s yet - still waiting on the retailer to ship (it's been 5 business days with no progress on that yet). I get the Q650c on Wednesday, though.

Home Theatre: Marantz SR6014 | Polk Audio RTi A3 Front L/R | KEF Q650c Centre | KEF Q150 Surround L/R | HSU ULS-15 MK2 Subwoofer | Sony XBR55X900E | PS4 Pro | Xbox One S | Nintendo Switch | TBA: KEF Q750 Front L/R

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post #10 of 23 Old 05-09-2020, 12:30 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by philpoe View Post
*v8foreheadsmack* I read that umpteen times and still focused on the Marantz.

For the AXR100, an option may be an app-controlled device that can play from USB and output over optical.
The Sony SMP-N100 fits that description, and also has a remote (in case you have a learning one), and can stream from a DNLA server if you ever go that route.
If it's not too expensive I can also look into that option, too - thanks! I've done an initial search, but it comes up as discontinued, but I can look into other similar items/perhaps a newer model.

Home Theatre: Marantz SR6014 | Polk Audio RTi A3 Front L/R | KEF Q650c Centre | KEF Q150 Surround L/R | HSU ULS-15 MK2 Subwoofer | Sony XBR55X900E | PS4 Pro | Xbox One S | Nintendo Switch | TBA: KEF Q750 Front L/R

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post #11 of 23 Old 05-09-2020, 12:42 PM
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They may be hard to find new, but I see a number of them used on ebay/the net for cheap via google shopping
The newer SMP-N200 seems to have dropped the USB port. I stopped searching via Sony models after that.

There are probably other models/brands, but that one popped up first.

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If it's not too expensive I can also look into that option, too - thanks! I've done an initial search, but it comes up as discontinued, but I can look into other similar items/perhaps a newer model.
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post #12 of 23 Old 05-09-2020, 12:56 PM
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Does it require a network player or is there a simpler, less expensive solution? My music setup is outlined in my signature.
a suggestion, might not work for you if your HT & music setup are in different areas of your home.
if your SR6014 is connected to modem/router, then you can connect the FAT32 HDD to the USB port of the modem/router, enable DLNA in the modem/router and use the excellent DAC in AVR to decode music in almost any format. use direct/ pure direct mode in AVR and connect either L/R or Zone 2 pre-outs to the Cambridge using a good quality 18AWG RCA (if the distance is more or else 22AWG ) cable and you are all set. i know its not ideal, but doesn't involve any new expenses, except for RCA cable. and with HEOS, you can control this from your mobile phone.
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post #13 of 23 Old 05-09-2020, 03:59 PM
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something like an Nvidia Shield would work, all music formats are recognized as well a 4k video

https://www.nvidia.com/en-us/shield/shield-tv/

it has a HDMI out that would plug into your Marantz.

The Shield can be a Plex host which will find your music either plugged into Sheild or on a NAS drive

interface shows up on your TV
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post #14 of 23 Old 05-09-2020, 07:35 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by polkandwhat View Post
a suggestion, might not work for you if your HT & music setup are in different areas of your home.
if your SR6014 is connected to modem/router, then you can connect the FAT32 HDD to the USB port of the modem/router, enable DLNA in the modem/router and use the excellent DAC in AVR to decode music in almost any format. use direct/ pure direct mode in AVR and connect either L/R or Zone 2 pre-outs to the Cambridge using a good quality 18AWG RCA (if the distance is more or else 22AWG ) cable and you are all set. i know its not ideal, but doesn't involve any new expenses, except for RCA cable. and with HEOS, you can control this from your mobile phone.
They're both within the vicinity of each other, but I am purposefully keeping them separate, so whatever can easily connect to my AXR100 is what I'd be after. There are a few promising options mentioned so far.

Home Theatre: Marantz SR6014 | Polk Audio RTi A3 Front L/R | KEF Q650c Centre | KEF Q150 Surround L/R | HSU ULS-15 MK2 Subwoofer | Sony XBR55X900E | PS4 Pro | Xbox One S | Nintendo Switch | TBA: KEF Q750 Front L/R

Music: Cambridge Audio AXR100 | Stanton T.62 | Cambridge Audio AXC35 | Neat Motive 3
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post #15 of 23 Old 05-09-2020, 11:34 PM
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If the router and/or a game console gets you a DLNA server and you don't want to connect the HT system, besides the Sony model mentioned before, there are a 2 inexpensive (<$50) DNLA-capable streamers I've been looking at that weren't mentioned because they don't play from USB storage.

Dayton Audio WBA31 has optical and analog out (and can actually play from SD card if you copy some files over). It uses a proprietary app based on a lesser know ecosystem, but is AirPlay compatible.
https://www.parts-express.com/dayton...emote--300-597

Phorus PR5 has analog out, no optical, but claims to have some great DAC. It's Play-Fi and AirPlay compatible. It's WiFi only, no ethernet. It has a USB port, but from what I can tell, it can't play media from it. It can take a USB-based ethernet port if you don't want to rely on a wireless connection.
http://phorus.com/pr5-receiver

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If it's not too expensive I can also look into that option, too - thanks! I've done an initial search, but it comes up as discontinued, but I can look into other similar items/perhaps a newer model.
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you can connect the FAT32 HDD to the USB port of the modem/router, enable DLNA in the modem/router
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ryan Statz View Post
They're both within the vicinity of each other, but I am purposefully keeping them separate, so whatever can easily connect to my AXR100 is what I'd be after. There are a few promising options mentioned so far.
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post #16 of 23 Old 05-10-2020, 12:13 AM - Thread Starter
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Would a Schiit Modi 3 do the trick?

Home Theatre: Marantz SR6014 | Polk Audio RTi A3 Front L/R | KEF Q650c Centre | KEF Q150 Surround L/R | HSU ULS-15 MK2 Subwoofer | Sony XBR55X900E | PS4 Pro | Xbox One S | Nintendo Switch | TBA: KEF Q750 Front L/R

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MacBook Pro should have optical out built in, you just need a 3.5mm optical adapter. Audio output jack is a combined analog and digital output.
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post #18 of 23 Old 05-10-2020, 12:55 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
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MacBook Pro should have optical out built in, you just need a 3.5mm optical adapter. Audio output jack is a combined analog and digital output.
Has that always been the case? Mine is a mid-2012 before they made things less consumer-friendly, and those awful glossy screens.

If that's the case, a $3 cable should do the trick!

Home Theatre: Marantz SR6014 | Polk Audio RTi A3 Front L/R | KEF Q650c Centre | KEF Q150 Surround L/R | HSU ULS-15 MK2 Subwoofer | Sony XBR55X900E | PS4 Pro | Xbox One S | Nintendo Switch | TBA: KEF Q750 Front L/R

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THis what i use love it 2tb of space. https://www.thebrennan.com/itemlist.php/clasrefr/units
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post #20 of 23 Old 05-10-2020, 03:38 PM
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Apparently it came out in 2005, but was later removed (2016?).
https://www.reddit.com/r/apple/comme...ical_line_out/
https://appleinsider.com/articles/16...headphone-jack
https://support.apple.com/guide/mac-...s-cpmh0052/mac

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Originally Posted by Worf View Post
MacBook Pro should have optical out built in, you just need a 3.5mm optical adapter. Audio output jack is a combined analog and digital output.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ryan Statz View Post
Has that always been the case? Mine is a mid-2012 before they made things less consumer-friendly, and those awful glossy screens.
If that's the case, a $3 cable should do the trick!
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post #21 of 23 Old 05-10-2020, 03:43 PM - Thread Starter
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I'll give it a shot - I actually have an audio to RCA cable I can try.

Home Theatre: Marantz SR6014 | Polk Audio RTi A3 Front L/R | KEF Q650c Centre | KEF Q150 Surround L/R | HSU ULS-15 MK2 Subwoofer | Sony XBR55X900E | PS4 Pro | Xbox One S | Nintendo Switch | TBA: KEF Q750 Front L/R

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post #22 of 23 Old 05-10-2020, 03:53 PM
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According to the apple support link you need a toslink miniplug adapter to make the jack able to take a cable, or an optical cable with a 3.5mm plug adapter
Amazon has a couple of things
http://www.amazon.com/outstanding-Di...dp/B07SL5DM5X/
http://www.amazon.com/FosPower-Tosli...dp/B00T8HWUVS/

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I'll give it a shot - I actually have an audio to RCA cable I can try.
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post #23 of 23 Old 05-17-2020, 05:37 PM - Thread Starter
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Update: got a 3.5mm to Toslink cable, works perfectly. I can now pay music from my computer. At least I can until it dies. Another alternative, I think is I can transfer a whole bunch of music to my iPad, and connect the RCA to 3.5mm cable I have if I want to be able to use my computer at the same time as listening to music.

Home Theatre: Marantz SR6014 | Polk Audio RTi A3 Front L/R | KEF Q650c Centre | KEF Q150 Surround L/R | HSU ULS-15 MK2 Subwoofer | Sony XBR55X900E | PS4 Pro | Xbox One S | Nintendo Switch | TBA: KEF Q750 Front L/R

Music: Cambridge Audio AXR100 | Stanton T.62 | Cambridge Audio AXC35 | Neat Motive 3
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