Aurender A10 setup - loading from CDs


Just purchased A10.  The instructions in the quick start guide for connecting to my local network worked. The A10 appears to find the Aurender app on my iPad. And the app appears to communicate with the A10.

 

My goal has been to move my CD collection to the A10.   Unfortunately, I am completely lost when comes to how to do this. What I’ve tried doesn’t appear to work. Here’s what I’ve tried.

Strategy 1:

          Following the online App Guide on the Aurender site, tried making the direct local network connection between my MacBook Pro and the A10.  The first three steps when well:

  • 1.     Locate the Finder menu bar at the top of your desktop.
  • 2.     Click GO -> CONNECT TO SERVER from the navigation bar.
  • 3.     Type in 'smb://' followed by your Aurender's IP address. (For example: smb://192.168.1.171) The IP address can be found under SETTINGS -> NAS.

 

Step 4 didn’t appear…

4.     Click Connect and a window will appear with folders labeled hdd1'and 'hdd2' Open the folder.

But the popup window for Step 5 did appear:

5.     A popup window will ask for a Username and Password. They can be found in the iPad application under SETTINGS -> NAS.

Unfortunately, when I went to SETTINGs -> NAS [Server], instead of giving me a Uusername and password, I was asked to provide a username and password.  I can’t find these anywhere, so this is a dead end for me.


Strategy 2:

The online App Guide also has a section describing how to add music to the A10 from an external USB memory device. To try this, I first dragged two album files from my iTunes music directory on the MacBook to a 4TB external HD. I then plugged in the HD to one of the A10’s USB ports.

I tried copying these albums following the instructors under the “Disk Information” tab in “Settings” on the app. I did the copy all command to music1 and the albums now appear in the playlist editor. Success, but none of the album art came over and its now clear how it could be added. Nor am I confident that this is the longterm solution.


I'm a newbie to computer audio beyond ITunes/iPod.  Any advice about how to get beyond this impasse?


yellowstone
The addition of a music sever in a system is a little more complicated but the instructions I provided below should get you started.  I suggest you do the maintenance items below on your MAC computer and then copy all your album files (including the cover art) to a hard drive.  You need the hard drive for your albums backup and this is recommended. 

After the steps below are completed, you attach your external hard drive to the Aurender and it copies everything over (and please keep reading for the details).

NOTE-1: Please note that iTunes does NOT STORE the album cover art within the song folder but "HIDES" it in another encrypted and hidden folder. This means the Aurender setup coming from iTunes requires you to run Doug Scripts to extract the album cover art in your transfer

(http://dougscripts.com/itunes/scripts/ss.php?sp=savealbumartjpeg).

NOTE-2: If you are using iTunes, you have to download the Extract to Folder.jpg Script from Doug Scripts (cost is $1.99). The Script run process is vey easy but it takes time depending on the number of albums. This script is required since it stores the album cover art image in the correct location and includes the correct name (Folder.jpg) for handling by the Aurender. Please check the Script for any updates.

NOTE-3: Please read the "Save Album Art as folder.jpg v3.4" instructions carefully. You have to set up a new folder named Scripts (within the iTunes library) so the script can run from within iTunes.   iTunes will NOT let this script run for a large number of albums. I suggest you test with 4-8 albums at a time and see what happens (adjust as needed). The Script runs very fast.  I had problems when I selected to many albums. 

NOTE-4: You can easily connect your computer to the Aurender file structure using the Finder Go Connect to Server tab. The iPad settings menus provide the necessary information (IP address, user name & password). This is how you delete files on the Aurender and also add or correct the Folder.JPG images files.

NOTE-5: If some of your albums do NOT have cover art, you have to manually add the album metadata (other automated options may be available). You Google the album name plus “CD Image”, find the image, move it to the Desktop, change its name to Folder.jpg and move it to the Aurender song folder (be careful to place it in the right location after the last song). The Aurender iPAD app is much easier to use if your albums have cover art. This process is not hard but take some time depending on the number of albums. A good estimate is 2-4 minutes per album (my times).  The manually adding of cover art, if needed, will take time but worth it.  

NOTE-6: Unfortunately, I had to determine most of these instructions myself to compete my album transfer including the album cover art (my dealer was NOT very helpful). If you are unclear, please ask for help (if needed).  I had to delete my transferred albums on the Aurender TWICE before I got it right. My instructions above should ensure you get it right the first time.

When I finished transferring my albums to the Aurender, I immediately backed up my Aurender files to my LaCie hard drive & also to my Seagate hard drive. I spent too much time building my album database so I backed it up twice.

As a test, I ripped 5 CD’s to a USB Flash drive, ran the “Extract to Folder.JPG” Script in iTunes to extract the missing album cover art for these albums. Two of these albums were missing album cover art so I used Google search to find the album cover art as I described above. The album transfers to the Aurender worked perfectly.

Please review the above and let me know if you have any questions.  


Doug script Link correction for above is:

http://dougscripts.com/itunes/scripts/ss.php?sp=savealbumartjpeg

Alert:   Make sure your album cover art is saved as folder.jpg so yourcAurebddrcwill recognize it.  
Please see the "read me" file for Doug's scripts:

https://dougscripts.com/itunes/pdf/savealbumartjpeg.pdf

This link explains how to save and run it in iTunes.  The script is added to iTunes and runs in iTunes.  
Please also review the Aurender App Guide for Transferring Music link below:

http://www.aurender.com/page/appguide-transferring

My instructions above plus the Aurender App Guide link for transferring music should enable you to transfer your albums from your MAC computer to your Aurender A10 including your albums cover art.  Cheers, Howard
For the last two years I have been using XLD (free download) rather than iTunes on my MBP to burn discs. The process remains cumbersome but do-able. Maybe the following will help, maybe not. You tell me. First off, make sure your Aurender is ON. Mine, an N100H, turns itself off after 2 minutes if not used-I have no doubt there’s a work-around but what I do is use my iPad and iPad app and just play a bunch of music (dac and amp and rest of system turned off) to keep the Aurender on. When the Aurender is on and assuming you have it properly connected to your router by LAN, your MacBook will "see it". Just go to "Finder" and to your left you will see your Mac and just below that the Aurender. With XLD and "Preferences" you can direct the output destination. The Aurender has 5 or 6 pre-programmed files for you under "Music" including "Pop", "Jazz", "Classical" etc. Pick one. Next, insert your CD to rip. There is no easy work-around for this, your Mac is going to open iTunes. Close iTunes and open XLD. Follow the intuitive XLD instructions and you should be good to go wirelessly transferring CD to the Aurender. Once the CD is ripped, you do need to go back to the Aurender file via the Mac and open a new subfile and name it (Artist and Album name) and manually click and drag the songs into the album file. A pain that there is likely a solution to that I am ignorant of.
Thanks so much!  Ooo, this sounds complicated so the roadmap is especially appreciated.

mac p
fsonicsmith, How does XLD handle an albums cover art?   Where does XLD store the cover art and what is it named?  

The Aurender requires the album cover art to be stored with the music files and named folder.jpg.   This album cover art naming will enable the cover art to be displayed on the Aurender iPad app.

Any software program can be used for ripping CD's (ITunes, XLD, JRIVER, etc) but please remember that the Aurender music server REQUIRES the album cover art to be stored with the music files and the cover art named folder.jpg.  Some ripping software provides options for supporting the above requirements.  
XLD makes it easy. When you burn the disc a window pops up with a tab up top for "Obtain Metadata". 95% of the time it recovers the cover art and stores it with the music (each song presumably) such that the iPad app shows the cover art. Aurender warns you that if you go the NAS route for storage you lose the metadata.
I feel your pain.  I was in your shoes few months ago after getting my A10.  I have an iMac and wanted to set it up to do the ripping and then import the files to the Aurender directly WITHOUT using the usb stick.

Luckily my "dealer" provided me with a contact to help over the phone.  As you describe, when we got to the point when the passwords were required, he had me type in "aurender' and "aurender".  That was all that was necessary to establish the link to the Aurender's "music 1" path.  From that point he guided me thru the process of establishing aliases for each of the Aurender main folders (pop, jazz, local, classic, etc.).  These alias files now reside on my desktop and when I rip a cd I just "drag and drop"the file in the appropriate folder.  In about 30 seconds after importing the new file, your Aurender will update on the iPad's conductor app!

I would strongly advise buying and using "db power amp" to do the ripping.  There are a lot of really neat features for adding cover art, recognizing HDCD tracks, editing the track and artist info for "mixed" cd's that do not register in the data base etc.

Finally, if you still have problems, have your dealer get you the contact info for Jean-Paul Lizars, Director of Sales and Marketing for Aurender North America.  He is wonderful to talk to and can get you a direct connection to the support team if you need phone or email help. 
This process sounds totally counter-intuitive. I mean, we use iTunes or Apples because they are so easy -- but the Aurender does not seem compatible. Are there any other servers like this that are easier to use with iTunes? 
@rinpoche, The album cover art transfer problem is NOT with your Aurender.  The REAL problem is with iTunes since it stores the album's cover art in an encrypted, hidden file.   The Aurender transfer process assumes, INCORRECTLY, that ALL the information is stored with the album content and, unfortunately, it is NOT.  I believe, but not 100% sure, there are other album management systems that maintains all the album information in one single file.  An example of this was mentioned above such as db power amp (I think).  I assume (??) several other software programs do the same.

As I explained above,  if you are using iTunes, you have to download the Extract to Folder.jpg Script from Doug Scripts (cost is $1.99). The Script run process is vey easy but it takes time depending on the number of albums (Do not copy all your files at one time.  Do it in small batches).  This script is required since it stores the album cover art image in the CORRECT location and includes the CORRECT name (Folder.jpg) for handling by the Aurender.  Please check the Script for any updates. This very simple, to use script copies the encrypted, hidden album cover art to the correct location for an easy copy over to your Aurender.  The process is fairly easy once you know what to do.   

In summary, iTunes does NOT STORE the album cover art within the album folder but "HIDES" it in another encrypted and hidden folder. This means the Aurender setup coming from iTunes requires you to run Doug Scripts to extract the album cover art in your transfer process.

NOTE:  Please remember that the Aurender requires the album cover art to be stored with the music files and named folder.jpg.   The correct album cover art file naming will enable the cover art to be displayed on the Aurender iPad app.   I am going to repeat this since the first time I ran Doug's Scripts, I selected the wrong program (whoops, my error).  You have to SELECT the "Extract to Folder.jpg Script" from Doug Scripts (cost is $1.99). This naming enable the Aurender to display the album's cover art on the iPad.  The scrip stored the Folder.jpg file in the correct location (included in the album).

I hope the above helps.  It took me 2+ weeks of total frustration until I discovered the above steps.  If needed, an email to [email protected] should get you some assistance. 



 
Hello Hgeifman! 
Thank you -- that is so sweet of you. I really appreciate it. I ran Doug's Scripts and will know on Tuesday when the Aurender arrives if I did it correctly. However, I am not sure I used "Extract to Folder"....I think I used "Save Album Art to Folder...." -- that is what Aurender recommended. Are they the same? Aurender then also recommended some other process that was just not in my zone (db power something or other). Did you do that as well? I am grateful to you (and others) who have figured this out. Personally, I don't really even care if I have artwork, but Aurender technical support said the Aurender app works better with artwork so it is necessary. Here is where it is an Aurender problem -- they know iTunes is encrypted (as you say) and we need it to run the app properly. But I am looking forward to it nonetheless. Also, how do you like the sound?????? 
@rinpoche, You are welcome.  After you run Doug's Scripts, go to the folder where the albums are saved and look for the file named "Folder.jpg".   Click on it to confirm the album art is displayed.  The file must be named folder.jpg so the Aurender can display the cover art on the iPad.   If the file is named "album name.jpg", you ran the wrong Doug's Script.  There are 2 album art scripts.  The "Save Album art to Album folder is the WRONG one.  The correct Script is "Save album art as folder.jpg".  It seems you ran the correct script but to be safe, I would verify it.  

You mentioned "Aurender then also recommended some other process that was just not in my zone (db power something or other)".  I do not know what this means.  

The album cover art is highly recommended since it makes it easier to find your albums on the iPad.   Aurender Customer Support recommends cover art because albums are easier to find.

When you install your Aurender A10, please update its firmware.  The update process may be automatic when you connect it but I cannot remember.  On the iPad Conductor App, go to setting and check for updates.  The Aurender Conductor App is installed from the Apple Store on your iPad.   I strongly recommend your Aurender A10 be directly wired to your router (hard wired).  Wi-Fi is not recommended.    

I also recommend you implement Tidal Streaming at $19.99 per month.  Tidal steams using uncompressed CD quality albums and also offer over 10,000 MQA Coded Albums.  Your A10 DAC includes full decoder MQA technology and is a fully compliant MQA end-to-end solution enabling you to play back MQA audio files for very high quality.  

I own the Aurender N10 Music Streamer and like it very much.  Its addition to my audio system substantially improved my sound quality over my MAC Book Pro computer.  You are going to like the A10 very much.
Hi Hgeifman!!
Perfect. I will do exactly that and let you know. I will check. It seems I ran the right script, but was I successful? That is what I need to find out and will look at the folder as you suggest. I can send you the Aurender instructions, something about a parallel desktop..?????

I have Tidal HD already. Love it. And I am getting the N10 -- not the A10. My DAC, however, is not MQA compatible so I won't be using that feature. Oh well, I am happy and looking very much forward to its arrival on Tuesday. I was also using my MacBookPro so I look forward to improved audio quality. It just keeps getting better and better. 

But I am also looking forward to the ease of use. Right now I have to get up and walk over the the computer to change songs, etc. This will be such a pleasure and I can stop hurting my back!!

I will be in touch -- stay tuned on Tuesday for the execution. Fingers crossed. 🤞🤞🤞 
I believe that MQA and Aurender partnered to to allow the DAC MQA unfold to be purchased for around $60 and downloaded to your N10.  Since the N10 is already MQA compatible as a server, adding the DAC MQA portion will now make your unit fully compatible and you can achieve a "full" unfold.  Since you have Tidal you can now listen to All 10k+ MQA Masters.
@rinpoche, Go to your album folder on your Computer and select any album.  Look in that folder for the words "folder.jpg".   This means Doug's Script installed the album cover art in the correct location.   

NOTE:  My albums were ripped using iTunes.   Unfortunately, I discovered that some albums had no cover art meaning after you transfer them to your Aurender, the album cover will NOT appear on the Conductor iPad App.  I manually went into that albums folder, looked for albums NOT having the folder.jpg file, Googled the album name, found the cover art image (jpg) and copied it to the correct location.   YES, this was very time consuming (and boring).  The challenging part is finding the albums that do not include cover art.  I searched every album and added cover art to the albums missing it.  This process took me several days. THERE MUST be better solutions but I could not find them.  

The Aurender A10 delivers “FULL Decoder MQA file playback from the internal DAC.   This is possible since the A10 has its own DAC.

The Aurender N10 handles MQA by providing MQA Core decoding only (the FIRST unfold typically to 88.2 or 96kHz) which could be converted to analog at that frequency by a non-MQA DAC or fully MQA decoded when processed by a DAC that functions as an MQA Renderer.   Listening to MQA Coded albums having the first layer unfold is an improvement (my opinion).  As was stated above, the cost for the MQA Core decoder license is $54.99.  

When you open the Conductor App, go to the Master Tab and hit Master Search.  10,000+ MQA Coded albums will appear for you to search (great news).   HOWEVER, we discovered, that sometimes the search will get mixed up and only 48 MQA albums will appear.  This is a software opportunity (bug) that Aurender is working on (Question was asked at AXPONA).   The suggested work around is to remove the Conductor App from memory and re-load it.  This resets the Master Search field and temporarily solves the problem.  I do not have a time frame when this will be fixed but I am hoping very soon.
Instructions for clearing iPad (or iPhone) Apps from short-term memory are:  

Double tap the home button to open the multitasking screen. scroll left or right to the App you want to close, swipe up on it to close it. Repeat for any other apps you want to close.

  


hgeifman — wow, thanks for everything. I have downloaded my iTunes library. Easy peasy. Not nearly as difficult as I anticipated. If i understand you correctly, you are saying that if I download the MQA decoder, Tidal will sound better with MQA songs than it does with H-fi even though my Aeris (Jeff Rowland) DAC doesn't have MQA decoding ability. Did I get that right? 
Yes.  The Aurender will MQA decode the first MQA layer and the sound quality should be better.  Your JR Aeris should be fine.  Please give a try.  The Aurender App provides the option to purchase the MQA decoder in the settings section.  
Okay. I will give it a try and let you know. I have not yet warmed up to the N10. I am hoping it will open up after break in. At the moment, though it is lovely, everything has a uniform 'sound'. I don't know if the Aurender itself has a sound, but it is not 'yet' as engaging, if you can believe it, as my computer set up was. I am hoping this changes after a month or so, but at the moment I am not 100% on board. I love the ease of use, the access via the app, but the sound, which is the key is still a question. If you have any ideas I would love to hear them. I know this thread started out about the A10 and it has turned the corner, I hope that is okay and that the current conversation is also helpful to subscribers. Thank you very much to hgeifman!!

The Aurender N10 requires some time to warm up.  I suggest it needs more time.  It is an excellent music server.