Got the Touch, Now What?

I just purchased a Squeezebox Touch. This is my first attempt at anything other than cd. I want to get this running properly wthout too many mistakes. I know there's probably no one perfect way to do this, but clearly some ways are better than others.

I have J River and Itunes on my desktop. I thought I'd rip all my cd's to J River (apparently this plays 24/96 files and itunes doesn't?)and then stream wirelessly from my desktop to the squeezbox, through my dac and out through my stereo.
I have a Cambridge Audio 840c and I thought I would utilize the DAC from it. Does it sound like I'm headed in the right direction?

I currently have itunes and a few hundred discs loaded using apple lossless, however I've read that ideally I create FLAC files for use with the touch instead? I'd like to have the files be some type of lossless to preserve the sound. I'm not concerned about file size because hard drives are cheap these days. I've got about a thousand cd's to work with so I really want to get this mostly right the first time.

I'm guessing at most of this so I would really appreciate any suggestions. Sorry if my explanation above sounds convoluted please bare with me.
Mike- I'm no expert on computer audiophile but it sounds correct to me. I ripped my cds to flac files and stream them wirelessly to a Squeezebox Transporter. I am taking the analog output from my modified transporter into a line input on my pre-amp. The only functional difference is that you have added an outboard DAC btwn the SB network player and your pre-amp. Should work fine.
You do not use jRiver or iTunes with the SBTouch (although you can use them to rip/copy/load files onto the PC). You use the Squeezebox Server software on your PC. SBS can read most formats including FLAC and whatever is in your iTunes directory but you should go through the setup procedure to tell SBS where the music files are.

And, yes, you can feed the digital output of the Touch into the 840C.

More of my comments here:

I just bought a Touch as well and am planning on using it while travelling. I am thinking of converting my CD's to FLAC with EAC to a 2TB portable hard drive. I will then plug the portable hard drive into the Touch, then analog out to a Headroom Little (it's what I have now) into a set of Senn HD600's. Does this sound viable even though a newer outboard DAC/headphone amp would surely be better?

Long term I am planning on using the Touch digital out into a PS Audio PW DAC and then eventually adding the Bridge thereby negating the Touch. At that point it would go back to the travel bag.

Does all this make sense? **and I thought getting a turntable set up right was tough... :-) **
If you are thinking of connecting the HD directly to the Touch by USB, it is not a good idea. The Tiny SBS in the Touch will have a hard time organizing and accessing such a drive and the USB connection may not be able to power it (unless it has an external PS). You are better off with a PC running the host-based SBS.

Running it into a Headroom amp is OK if the Headroom amp has a volume control.

That does make sense. I have a laptop that could to host the SBS program. Again, this will be used during travelling as I am on the road (hotels) up to 7-8 months of the year. Tough to drag a PC along but I always have a laptop.
Just got a Squeezebox Touch, and am liking it alot. It took awhile to get it to play 24 bit files through Itunes, but I finally got it to work by converting with XLD and then converting those files to AIFF in I tunes. Couldn't get max to work.

1. Is this a reasonable way to convert hi rez files to play through Itunes?

Problem is that I'm getting drop out of sound when streaming Hi Rez files through my wireless router. This happens primarily with files from HDtracks; so far not an issue with live concert FLAC24 downloads.

2. Any idea what the problem is with the drop-out on Hi Rez files? I also noticed this on 320kbs internet radio. Could it be a problem with my router? Would this happen if lots of stuff is running on my computer?

Thanks for any and all advice ....
Tpy, it might just be your wireless signal strength/available bandwidth. Try running wired and see if you have the same problem. Is your wireless router 802.11g or 802.11n? The best way to deliver wireless would be to get a wireless router that does 802.11n ON THE 5GHZ BAND (aka a "dual band" 802.11n router), and get a 5GHZ 802.11n wireless bridge that will pick up the signal deliver it to your SB through the wire. The 2GHZ band is very noisy so going to 5GHZ can greatly improve signal strength. HOWEVER, the range is not as long as 2GHZ, so YMMV depending on how far your router is from your SB.

If it's a long distance, you can get 2 more wireless bridges and connect them with a crossover cable at the point in between your router and SB. One bridge picks up the signal from your router and the other broadcasts it again (when set to access point mode), effectively acting as a signal booster.

You can pick up refurbished a WNHDE111 wireless bridge for a little over $40. For a router, I recommend the Linksys WRT-400n, about $60 refurb.
I would like to share my experience with the Squeezebox Touch.

I have been running a Squeezebox Touch system for about 5 months now, and it is equal to or better than most high dollar CD\SACD systems I have heard.
(but only when done right)

The system must be set up correctly for ultimate sound quality.

I have been involved in computers for over 25 years, and an Audiophile for 38. This setup assumes you have a home network (wired & wireless) and a desktop computer. (but we will NOT use the desktop for playing your music) If you need a bit of help with computers, get a friend to set this up for you - it will be worth it.

The complete system below runs about $1240.00 including the Touch. (not at all expensive in the Audio world - you can probably sell your CD player for that)

The system should be run with wired ethernet cable for flawless playback. (yes it's a little harder -but do it anyway)

OK - Let's go..

File Storage - purchase an HP Mediasmart Home Server. (about $450.)
This small box holds up to 4 hard drives with RAID backup and more space than you will ever need. Besides holding your entire music library, it can back up all your home computers, collect pictures and videos from your computers, and you can access all of it from anywhere.
You can place this server anywhere in your home with an ethernet cable into your switch or router. When tested against various desktop computers, the server always sounds better.

File Storage - purchase the DbPoweramp download for $39. and put the program into your desktop computer.
This fantastic program has every single thing you need to rip & convert your music file Library. (it even has automatic batch ripping so you can use 2 CD drives at the same time for continuous ripping if you wish - all you do is keep inserting CDs.)

Use your Desktop to Rip your music as Free Lossless Audio Codec (FLAC) onto the server.
You can also download HDTracks high resolution 96-24 FLAC files and put them on as well.

Install the free download of Squeezebox Server onto your home server.

Connect the Squeezebox Touch in your listening room and run ethernet cable to connect it to your network. Connect it with a digital Coax to a good DAC for the highest quality sound. (If you do not have a DAC yet, use the analog outs and connect it that way until you do get a DAC)

The Squeezebox Touch will automatically find the Squeezebox Server on your home server and be able to see and play the library, but there are settings that will make playback better..

In the Squeezebox Server program on your server, change the settings to send a stream of PCM instead of a FLAC file. (Easy to find & do) This means that the server is doing the work of converting the FLAC files instead of the Squeezebox Touch. (The server has more power and resources for this, and avoiding this on the tiny Squeezebox Touch produces a pronounced increase in sound quality)

So now that you are listening to some of the best sound you have ever heard from your system..what's next?

The perfect remote control... an Apple iPad with The Squeezepad application.
This iPad program controls your Squeezebox and is truly a beautiful touchpad interface with crystal clear large album artwork. The iPad connects wirelessly in your network.

That's it..
If you are moving into digital files and the Squeezebox Touch this is the way to go.
I can guarantee you will love the sound of this particular setup.
IF you have a quality DAC it is way beyond good..stunning is the word.

Have fun & Enjoy your music!

Joe -- Thanks for your great suggestions. I've been using my Touch for about 2 months and am loving it. I have a few questions:

1. Can you be a bit more specific about how to change it send a PCM instead of FLAC stream. I'm using an iMac with iTunes so, since my understanding is these don't do FLAC, maybe it already is doing that? I've been converting my FLACs to WAV with XLD.

2. I've read that sound will be greatly improved by using Pure Music. And it clearly improves things when I play files on the computer itself, but I don't think it is going to the Touch. I've also heard that the Touch won't play music via Pure Music. Any thoughts or suggestions?

3.Is the DbPowerAmp download you mention a substitute for iTunes or Pure Music? Or does it work with these?

Thanks again for the great post. It seems lots of people are getting into the Touch and most could some guidance as to how to get the best out of it.