I have recently started looking at expanding my system and changing it from a computer-based one, into something more versatile and not only headphone-oriented.
What I have at the moment is some headphones and a Burson HA-160D amp with DAC.
What I am looking for is a source, that will be used to feed the HA-160D and in the future add speakers to it. I am loking for a device that will have CD; WiFi for NAS, UPnP and Media Servers; USB for HDD/ USB dongle playback; FM and DAB optional, but welcome; if possible even an amp so that I could connect speakers without adding another device. I have not decided to expand my system yet, but I would like to see what you guys say about such systems and what you use.
I have looked at several devices, but really have no idea how practical and good these versatile devices are. The one that looks very interesting is the NaimUniti, that ocmbines all these features in one device, that even though a bit pricey gives you a real all-in-one solution.
What do you guys use and what would you recommend? Will I be better off buying a CD player, an amp and a networked player separately (still may even be cheaper than an all-in-one)?
If you were building a system with CD and maybe some network media player what would you recommend to start such a system with to make sure I can expand it in the future?
Can you get a demonstration? I'm assuming from your profile that NI = Northern Ireland, and there are a few retailers over there.
Depending on what speakers you're considering the UnitiQute might also be worth looking at.
Personally I'm starting to ignore CD other than for ripping to disk. High quality streaming seems to be getting less expensive every year. But, ripping still seems to be better than standard (e.g. iTunes) downloads.