During my three year long search for a good sounding media server, I have listened to many of the top media rated brands: Aurender, Aurailac, Weiss, Lumen, Antipodes, etc. I have even owned some of them for brief periods. Features aside, the main problem I have found with almost all music servers is that they sound overly bright and digital. During my initial search, one of the first things I found was that it was pretty difficult to determine what portion of a given system’s sonic signature was due to the digital source, so I decided auditioning a music server in my own system was imperative. To make matters more complicated, I am also restricted for fiscal reasons from buying some of the very top of the top tier digital gear new, so Audiogon has been my constant partner in this long search. That said, I am happy to be able to relate that I have finally found an end to my search, with a media server that sounds very natural with good high resolution material and pretty darn good even with just ripped Red Book CD - particularly after upsampling - that media server is the Memory Player 64 by Laufer Teknik.
The Laufer Teknik Memory Player 64 is a purpose built audio computer, ripper, data storage and DAC, all housed in casework which looks good beside other high end audio gear. More importantly, the Laufer Teknik Memory Player 64 sounds like music! After reviewing many designs, and finding them lacking, I had honestly resigned myself to going back to spinning silver disks, one by one, or settling for streamer level quality in sound. Subsequently, I had some level of trepidation when I happened upon a device for sale, made by Laufer Teknik, who I had not yet heard of. The more I read about the Laufer Teknik product, the more I was intrigued and wanted to give it a try. The device that had caught my attention was a mint Laufer Teknik Memory Player 64, 16 Core, with DAC and some nice upgrades, for sale on Audiogon by a reviewer who was trading up. The Laufer Teknik Memory Player 64 employees some very advanced methods of dealing with jitter right at the beginning of the chain, which makes a huge difference to the subsequent sound. Honestly, I don’t completely understand how some of their tech works but I can tell you the end result is spectacular and superior in sound to any other media server I have heard and the performance is right in line with the very best digital playback I have ever experienced, at any cost. The features and capabilities of the Laufer Teknik Memory Player 64 are many but the OS is Windows intuitive and JRiver is utilized as the interface for the music library, so the learning curve is gentle to get started. I can not say this about some of the other music servers I have used. Moreover, Sam Laufer is very supportive of his products and has personally provided me assistance when needed. It is obvious that Sam cares very much about his product and his customers! I can relate that I have received a very laudable level of support from Laufer Teknik, with Sam personally helping me with an OS upgrade on more than one occasion. This level of support was very gratifying to receive, particularly on a used product! Additionally, Sam and his partner Mark Porzilli are constantly devising ways to carry their designs forward and offer upgrade paths even to second hand owners like me. Just a great experience all around! I’m positive I could not do justice to explaining the tech which allows the Laufer Teknik Memory Player 64 to sound the way it does, so please see their site if you are interested: https://www.thememoryplayer.net
So, my search is done for now, at least for this one crucial piece of gear which I plan on using into the foreseeable future. Maybe I’ll entertain the idea of some additional upgrades from Laufer Teknik, such as their upgraded power supply, but other than that I can now finally just relax and enjoy the music.