MOVING TO computer/HD/audio player from CD's


I decided that continuing to increased my 1000 CD record collection was so 1940’s.  But then I discovered that there doesn’t seem to be any way to be high end audio.  Using my record collection from my macbookpro to my system 10 feet away isn’t possible without running a cable across the floor.

Bluetooth can’t handle the bandwidth for even 16bit CD let alone 24 bit.  An Fm transmitter gives me the limited S/N ration and stereo separation as well as limited frequency response of that medium.

It would seem that the only way is a hard wire from a used computer connected to a hard drive sitting with the equipment.

Am I missing something?
zarathu
You can stream from your macbook to another device with wifi enabled. 5GHz is better than 2.4GHz for this. The other device is called an NAA, or network audio adapter. You can use a NUC with wifi for this. If you don’t want a NUC with a fan you can move the motherboard from the NUC into a fanless case from Akasa. Very simple to do. Or just buy the board separately. If you want an untethered solution that’s probably your best bet.

You could also connect a hard drive to the NUC and just run everything from it.
I suspect this question has been answered a zillion times.  I may have did a few times too.  But here's my two cents on what I did:

(Not recommended)
1) use Mac's PnP (with, say, a cheap Sony DVD / Blu-ray as streamer to your DAC)
--- slow, unsearchable, many files not recognized, complete waste of time; poor sound quality

2) use Mac's headphone jack as analog audio in
--- just don't!

3) use Mac's Toslink digital output (same headphone jack as also an Toslink out) to your DAC, with some software like VOX
--- inferior quality, also, you cannot do web browsing on your Mac at the same time

4) Sonos (OMG)

5) Denon Helios (OMFG)
--- only saving grace is integration with Amazon Music, plus playing directly from your iPhone's library (very convenient ... I don't need to power up my Mac yet I could listen to my music library thru Helios --- as long as I don't downgrade the format while syncing thru iTunes)

6) Pioneer N50 (OMOMFG)

(works for me)
7) Logitech Transporter as a streamer to your DAC, Mac runs the Logitech Media Server.  The Mac and the external drives are all SDD.
--- the iOS app only works on older iOS, I use browser interface instead (typically <your mac's IP>:9000 in Chrome / Firefox et al)
--- only 24/96 output from Transporter

The key is convenience at the expense of quality, much like vinyl -> CD.  You get the idea.  But mostly, the music is 100% enjoyable to listen to.

There are some very expensive solutions out there, like memory player, et al.  But at that level, I'd rather pop a CD onto my CD player.





OK... maybe I wasn’t clear in what I have, and where I want to go.  It may also be that I am so far behind the times(I’m 70 yers old), that I don’t understand what you are talking about.

I have a rather high end line array speaker system.  Each size has 25 mid ranges, 15 tweeters, one 8 inch mid woofer, one 12 inch sub woofer.  This is connected to a analog electronic crossover running a separate amplifier for the tweeters, mid ranges, mid woofers, and sub woofer.  Each of the  six amplifiers(one for each side, for each group) are 100 watts, and a 350 RMS watt per channel amp for the woofers. Turn it on Playing Organ, and you will think you are in the church as there is no distortion.  This is connected to a pre-amp which currently connects to a CD player and an FM Tuner. 

I’m listening online, and burning CD’s from a subscription service called PrimePhonic which streams at 24 bit, 44Khz.  

I have almost 1000 CD’s of everything but taking music, more than 1/2 classical.  

The purpose is to put all the cd’s on an external SSD and  play them using an audio music player on the computer.  This would save massive space, make it portable, and make finding a selection much easier.   Optimally,  I would simply like  play them from across the room using my late 2013 quad core 2.6 ghz macbook pro.  

But... I’m not willing to spend $2000+ just to get a wifi or blue tooth connection between my pre-amp and my macbook pro.  The MBP has thunderbolt, usb 3.0, HDMI, and of course the headphone output, but the headphone output is also a digital output.  

For $300, I can buy a used 13 inch core 2 duo with optical output and hard wire connect it to my hi-fi system, doing the above. 

I’m not sure whether my questions was answered because when I looked up the items listed(I’m not sure what they do) their prices far exceeded the price of a used 13 inch MBP and a couple of two terabyte SSD’s.  
Look at HDDs with 6TB-10TB capacity.
Prices range from less than $100 to $300 for HDD only.
CD quality files WAV are relatively large files.
If redundancy is not an issue a single portable storage device will work.
https://www.amazon.com/Elements-Desktop-Hard-Drive-WDBWLG0080HBK-NESN/dp/B07G3QMPB5/ref=zg_bs_595048_9?_encoding=UTF8&refRID=25126804WK413ZZXGMXF&th=1
Installation Option is available.
Reformat the Drive for MAC use.
A USB connection is Required.
Use a good quality USB cable.
You will need Digital to use digital USB input to the Preamp.
Control from listening position is a whole separate matter.




I think it would be easier to run a cable across the floor to my MBP connecting to a reasonable quality DAC behind the pre-amp.  No one listens to speakers like I have, and so anything less than 16bit,  44khz, is clearly audible on my system.    It seems that the easiest thing to do is to keep using CD’s since I’m not willing to pay more than $2000 for the convenience of transferring music 10 feet away.  


The conversion to digital with a large HDD or SSD, a good DAC, iTunes or a clone,  and connections from the PC to the Pre-amp was never the issue.  I can do that in lots of different ways.  

The control from the listening position was what I was trying to drive toward.    I suspect that it might be possible with a separate wifi adapter on a NUC broadcast from my Mac, but being able at the same time surf the internet and do what I do on the pac while listening is probably a no-go.  The Mac can’t be both a receiver and a transmitter at the same time.  
Look into getting a streamer - Bluesound, Lumin, etc.  Some can also act as a server, allowing you to copy your CD collection onto it.  

I use Bluesound, so that's what I will speak to, but the concept should be similar with other streamers. 

I have a lot of music files on an external hard drive connected to my PC.  I share that folder of files on my network and the Bluesound software "sees" it and can stream to my stereo via analog outs, or in my case via a coax out to my DAC which is then connected to my preamp via analog outs.  I also stream Tidal, Qobuz, Radio Paradiso, TunedIn, Spotify, etc.

I use PC/Android, but I believe the Bluesound will work on Mac also.
I have almost 1000 CD’s of everything but taking music, more than 1/2 classical.  

The purpose is to put all the cd’s on an external SSD and  play them using an audio music player on the computer.  This would save massive space, make it portable, and make finding a selection much easier.   Optimally,  I would simply like  play them from across the room using my late 2013 quad core 2.6 ghz macbook pro.  

But... I’m not willing to spend $2000+ just to get a wifi or blue tooth connection between my pre-amp and my macbook pro.  The MBP has thunderbolt, usb 3.0, HDMI, and of course the headphone output, but the headphone output is also a digital output.  

For $300, I can buy a used 13 inch core 2 duo with optical output and hard wire connect it to my hi-fi system, doing the above.

I’m not sure whether my questions was answered because when I looked up the items listed(I’m not sure what they do) their prices far exceeded the price of a used 13 inch MBP and a couple of two terabyte SSD’s.  

You should look into high res music.  If you feel your system is revealing you'll certainly notice a benefit in this.  Learn how to compress your music files into the lossless flac format if you don't know how already.  A bit perfect extractor that can convert the music directly from the CD to flac (or any other format) is EAC or Exact Audio Copy.  Free software and the best thing out there for the purpose.

Using a NUC with wifi will cost you around $500.  Add a 10GB external drive via USB to it.  Don't use SSD.  They introduce more electrical noise than your standard spinning platter discs.  They are also much more expensive at the higher capacities.

You can install software directly on the NUC that can stream the music to your DAC.  I don't think you mentioned having a DAC so if you don't that could change this entire conversation.

I would recommend using Roon as your player/library software.  Otherwise JRiver.  You limit yourself with iTunes. 

You have a number of options using an iPhone or iPad and appropriate control app. For example, Audirvana has a nice companion remote app. I haven't used Apple's Remote app in years but it worked well with iTunes. JRiver has theirs. Stratospherix MusicStreamer app is different beast altogether, allowing you to avoid using other players. I used it for quite some time .. simple and robust using Apple's share technology:

https://www.stratospherix.com/products/musicstreamer/

An Intel NUC© is the same as a Mac Mini.  You can pick up an old one for about $139, with a digital optical output, which you would have to run into a dedicated DAC to go into the pre-amp.  You would need two 2-terabyte HDD’s(one for back in the safety deposit box), a small keyboard and mouse, and very small 7 inch screen(like they use in camera equipment).  With all the equipment it would cost between $400 and $700 depending on how much you paid for the external DAC, and the mac mini.  Since you can use screen sharing on both the Macbook Pro and iPhone(via Bluetooth 2 or wifi), you could run it from anywhere in the house, or even around the world.  It would give the best options in regard to quality of output to the pre-amp.  

Looking at this, I don’t think I’m quite ready to digitize for my system yet.  I’ll stick with CD’s for the moment and reorganize them.

Thanks everyone for their help to focus me on what I could do if I was so inclined.  

MOVING TO computer/HD/audio player from CD’s

I decided that continuing to increased my 1000 CD record collection was so 1940’s.

Don’t sell off your cd’s, I’ve had two friends who did this to fund "computer audio" and after some time chopping/changing trying to be satisfied with it, wanted to go back to cd so much they are now both musically grief stricken.
They have given away being audiophiles and become reclusive to anything to do with audio, SERIOUSLY!

Looking at this, I don’t think I’m quite ready to digitize for my system yet. I’ll stick with CD’s for the moment and reorganize them.
Sanity prevails.

Cheers George