Someone Please Explain Streaming To Me!

Discussion in 'General Audio Discussion' started by baco99, Aug 21, 2013.

  1. baco99

    baco99 AK Subscriber Subscriber

    OK, so here I am, loaded with awesome vintage audio goodness.
    What is the best system out there for connecting my audio gear together so I can play music throughout the house, but also from each room's individual system?

    For example:

    Preamp, amp, TT, cable, iPod, CD, Tuner, main Speakers

    Office (next room over):
    Preamp/tuner, amp, CD, iMac, inside speakers and outside (deck) speakers


    HT amp, HT speakers, stereo receiver, cable, CD, iPod, speakers

    preamp, tuner, amp, iPod, speakers

    I know I can use a Sonos Connect to have each system "talk" to one another, but Sonos is hella expensive.

    I already have a Mac-oriented house with all of my digitized music on iTunes. Should I get Airport Express stations at each listening area and stream from my iMac to those areas? Is there any way for the Airport to take an analog input (i.e. Turntable) and broadcast is wirelessly?

    What's a Roku?

    What can Apple TV do? Can I use it for video in some areas and AirPorts in other areas where there's not video?

    SHould I get my music on to a dedicated server and off my iMac? If so, can I still use iTunes?

    Someone please design me a streaming system!!!!

    Whatever is designed needs to be easy enough for the wifey to operate.

  2. jblnut

    jblnut Vintage Audio Nut Subscriber

    I can tell you what I did - it's certainly one of the cheapest and easiest to use solutions out there. Hit that auction site and look for "USB fm transmitter black box". What you will find is a $50 box that plugs into a PC (not certain about Mac) and emulates a USB speaker system. Tune all the tuners in your house to the broadcast frequency of the box and you are done. You'll have to play with the output level of the audio player on the pc/Mac to avoid distortion but that's about it.

    I've turned several friends onto these and they all love it. It's not the highest quality solution but it's cheap and easy to setup. Plus all systems can play the same song at the same time for that "whole house audio" experience.

  3. baco99

    baco99 AK Subscriber Subscriber

  4. BBRN

    BBRN Well-Known Member

    Hi Baco,

    I have an apple house too. My apple TV is one of the best things I've bought, as I can stream, via wifi, lossless audio from any of my apple devices anywhere in my home. I think if you have more than one apple TV or airport base station, it gives the option of which to connect to . I can also stream video through the mirroring whatever shows on the apple devices screen can be transferred to my TV also through wifi, and if you download the remote app you can use your iPhone/Ipod as the remote control for the aTV. And of course as with all apple products...easy set up, and the wifey will dig it.

    Hope that helps some. There's lots of options out there, and I'm sure someone will chime in with others soon enough.
  5. baco99

    baco99 AK Subscriber Subscriber

    There isn't an app that will "connect" all apple devices? Seems like that would solve the problem with existing hardware
  6. BBRN

    BBRN Well-Known Member

    They are all connected by apple's "airplay" which uses your existing wifi.
  7. estreeter

    estreeter Super Member

    Sonos 'hella' expensive ? Wouldn't that be 'Sooloos' ?

    (ok, Meridian renamed it, but you know what I'm referring to)
  8. baco99

    baco99 AK Subscriber Subscriber

    so, can i control an iPod touch that's in my garage from my phone? can the music "sync" so all devices are playing the same thing from my music library at the same time?
  9. transmaster

    transmaster Super Member

    You didn't say what kind of iPod's you have. But if they are iPod Touches what you can do purchase a docking stand with audio outs that has a remote control such as this one from amazon. If your Touches are new enough to have wireless syn you can keep them updated. These docking stands are cheap you didn't mention if you have an iPad but you can hook these up via an extension docking cable. It hooks up to your audio gear with RCA connectors. The iOS devices are already hooked into your wifi system.

    Last edited: Aug 22, 2013
  10. wgb113

    wgb113 Well-Known Member

    Having an Apple house it'll be best to stay within their ecosystem as much as possible. Here's what I do:

    I transfer all of my CDs and LPs to an external hard drive that's connected to my iMac in the main music room.

    I use iTunes to stream music throughout the house via AirPlay.

    Music Room: iMac is connected via Toslink to my DAC and controlled with an iPod Touch via the Remote app.

    Family Room: Stream through an AppleTV to my home theater receiver for playback on that system and to a DAC that feeds my second zone.

    Back Deck: this is the second zone that I can send music to from the home theater connected AppleTV. We control the music with our iPhones/iPod Touches/iPads via the Remote app.

    Master Bedroom: Stream via an AppleTV connected to a powered soundbar.

    Kids' playroom: stream to an AirPlay equipped Pioneer A3.

    Garage: Stream to an AirPort Express connect to an amp and speakers. Use iPhones/etc to control music.

    The other nice part is that when people come over with their iDevices they can stream stuff right from there device to any of the zones.

    AppleTVs and AirPort Express' are the easiest, cheapest, most elegant way to build a whole-house system if you're already Mac-oriented.

  11. baco99

    baco99 AK Subscriber Subscriber

    I actually have older iPhones that can do wireless but no longer have phone plans.

    These docking stations won't allow me to sync, so all the iPhones will play the same song at the same time from their respective stations, will they?
  12. baco99

    baco99 AK Subscriber Subscriber

    So, can you have the same source play on all zones?

    Also, how are you transferring analog to iTunes? How can you "capture" the signal and create MP3s? This seems time consuming...
  13. wgb113

    wgb113 Well-Known Member

    Yes, I can have the music play on as many or few of those devices as I want as well as control the volume independently via the remote.

    As for transferring vinyl to iTunes, yes, it is very time consuming. I send the analog signal to my iMac via the USB out from my phono preamp and use Audacity software to record and convert to 24/96 AIFF files that are playable in iTunes.

    While time consuming it's worth the convenience to me to be able to hear all of those albums anywhere I want.

  14. baco99

    baco99 AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Thanks Bill

    I have more research to do.
  15. baco99

    baco99 AK Subscriber Subscriber

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