do music servers send as high quality a signal as cds ripped into your computer do? most radio stations on line don,t send a real high quality feed as far as i know.
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The problem with integrated music servers is:
1) they have to select or write the ripping code and CODEC
2) they have to select or write the playback sofware
3) they have to select low-jitter clocks and implement a low-jitter circuit to output S/PDIF digital
4) they have to avoid poor audio stack kernels on Mac or PC
5) they have to use SSD and lots of DRAM and minimize other applications running on the computer
Unless they use the latest technology and make the optimum decisions on all of these, you will usually get a result that is less than what can be achieved with Amarra and a modified Mac Mini like the Mach2music.com or even a stock Mac Mini. I know because I have added reclockers to these servers. Probably one of the best of these is Qsonix. They have gone the extra distance to rip accurately and use a good playback software.
IMO, servers like this are convenient for those that never touch computers. If you can make your way around a computer, then definitely try a dedicated computer for audio.