Question about a music server

I have entertained going to a music server of some type. I have a cd collection of just over 700 discs. How much storage space would I need? I have an imac w/ itunes but don't think this would work. The thought of ripping all those cd's isn't appealing but the convenience after sure is.
I have about 2000 cds on my MAC - lossless. These cds average about 300MB each. If your discs are similar than you should need about 210 gigs. I think that the max for a cd is about 800MB (over 80 min of music). At 800MB each you would need about 560 gigs.
That exactly what I have done. I use Mac-Mini with 1TB drive on firewire bus. I keep second 1TB backup at work in case of fire, burglary etc. I use free program MAX that ripps exact copies, gets covers and puts it into Itunes in Apple Lossless format. Each CD holds about 500MB on average. Compression is about 2x so you need 700x250MB=175GB - possibly slightly more beacuase of metadata and covers. My 1TB Fantom drives were $100-120 and you won't save much by going to smaller sizes.
I started my music server about a year ago. I seldom use my CD player anymore. I usually take time to rip a CD to disk first prior to listening. Sometimes, I'll just carve out a chunk of time (often while listening to my system concurrently) and use it to rip a bunch of titles to disk in advance all at one time.

I recently picked up a 1.5 Tb Seagate USb drive that has been just what the doctor ordered. Cost: $140 at Best Buy. Incredible! I'm coming up on about 5000 tracks ripped, which equates to few hundred discs I'd say (still a few hundred to go), and the 1.5Tb disk is only slightly used.

I plan to pick up another of the same 1.5 Tb drives soon to keep a backup on in that the other 500Gb backup drive I have will be filled at some point.
Interesting. I know Olive has stand alone server and I had thought about getting a mac mini just for the purpose.
Also MusicVault has a stand alone server that runs windows home server and can be hooked into your home network and used to back up all files automatically. It has built-in mirrored drives for music b/u and comes w squeezecenter software on it. Neal will give you a great deal on a server plus logitech transporter or touch player.
I use the MAC Book Pro computer as my music server. The MAC has 4 GB RAM and the 120GB solid state drive. I am using the Seaport Free Agent Go Pro 500GB external hard drive (for the MAC) to store my music files (a 2nd one for backup). I have about 200 CD's loaded into my MAC Book Pro computer and more to go. It takes between 3 to 5+ minutes per CD using the AIFF format. The space for each CD is between 400k to 750k. For estimating purposes, I suggest an average size of 500k. My MAC Book Pro computer is connected to the Furman AC-215 power conditioner. The Furman is required so the MAC does not interfere with the audio components. See

Everyone I spoke to recommended the MAC computer and iTunes to manage the music. Ayre recommended I put my music on an external hard drive. It sounds better if it is on a different controller than the DAC, which means a FireWire hard drive. I used a portable external drive that has a 2.5" drive inside it. The advantage of this over a bigger external hard drive with a 3.5" drive is that it will be much quieter and it will run off the power provided by the bus.
i don't hook up my mac music server directly to my audio equipment, even if it is 2 feet away. i never use USB, always coax into the dac, toslink glass into a jitter device from airport express or apple tv's, even if the dac handles jitter i use a jitter device. my audio room is 2 floors away from my server, my den audio equipment is 2 feet away and still use an airport express. my other rooms are cabled using cat5e running gige speed with switches, so their is no network issues if i'm running multiple destinations from the server at the same time.

There are in fact a myriad of ways to accomplish having all of your media at your fingertips with almost instantaneous playback and at very high quality fidelity rates.

It’s all in how you wish to establish the interface and playback method which suits you best… and of course the budget, if any.
An old desktop unit seeing little if any use will work fine. Add some storage to either it or as a Network attached storage device or simply add USB Hard drives to it. Throw on or in a quality sound card, a digital cable to feed your DAC and some remote control device such as an Iphone, or other similar product and you’re in your easy chair with thousands of tracks at your disposal in no time. The most arduous process here will be downloading all the CDs into the storage bays you’ve selected.

Such a system, mine in fact is very cost effective. $500 +/- for storage, $175 for PCI sound card, $100 +/- for cables. The Media player (s) are free or of nominal cost, being under $50. That’s it. I have to use a laptop for remote control operation of the desktop/server, and as it has other uses I’ll not add in it’s cost in full to the endeavor. Same thing for the older desktop which I should have thrown away already. So for roughly $750 you’re there. Initially however, one terra byte drive is enough. So for only half of my current price you’re clicking through your library. All in bit perfect fashion.

Naturally, if you elect to upgrade various components within the architecture along the way, costs rise. Just like in the audio hobby, they don’t always equate to exact value to performance ratios either. Noteably in the D/D interface. USB can be used and further savings are then your’s too. I prefer the sound card for higher fidelity and resolution gleaned by using 24/88;96;176;192.

The limitation here is this provides or works as a single source output device. Dedicated to my main 2ch system. For added flexibility or to send info to other systems or areas, a NAS drive was added. Now the Old PC is purely a stand by and a new one I have now I’m gearing up for full on server duties that can be accessed from anywhere. Video too.

A turn key setup looks like the fastest and easiest path provided one has the funds for that acquisition, and isn’t concerned terribly with support issues should they arise, ala, packing up and sending off the unit.

I had originally thought the sound of the TK device (s) would play a part but the DAC one uses to feed the system analog info and the system itself will determine all that.

I suppose it all comes down to how involved one wishes to get in the process, and the funds on hand.

In my reference, what I’m using now equals and or surpasses the overall quality of my former SCD xa 777 + DAC experiences.

The noteable problem thereafter? Premature clicking. There may well be a pill for that too… beats me. Remember you’ll no longer have to wait… get up … pick out … or put back the disc anymore. So buy an analog setup or a treadmill… or play tunes from a stationary bike.

A quality music serving apparatus is the appittamy of self indulgence and sloth.

But gee…. It sure is fun.

….and like Bob Barker always said, “Be kind to your data, and always remember to back it up”… or was that spay and neuter? Well, you’ll make the right choice there I’m sure.
Thanks for all the great input. Indeed, there are many options to consider..