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  1. #1
    Administrator Site Administrator atomicAdam's Avatar
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    Have you guys seen the Olive 3HD

    This thing looks like one hell of a deal at $999.

    I just got my copy of TAS and it had this in there as a product of the year. I thought the price was miss print but no.

    $999 music server - where all others are in the $4-10k range.

    http://www.olive.us/products/music_s...3hd/specs.html

    I think I'm going to try to get one, for review or not. If the DAC is good, well awesome!
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  2. #2
    Music Junkie E-Stat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by atomicAdam
    This thing looks like one hell of a deal at $999.
    Looks like a good solution for those who don't have access to a computer which already has the drives.

    rw

  3. #3
    Administrator Site Administrator atomicAdam's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by E-Stat
    Looks like a good solution for those who don't have access to a computer which already has the drives.

    rw
    Yes - while I agree that a computer is cheaper and easier if you know how to use it - something like this - if the UI is actually user friendly - solves so many issue with others in the family not being able to participate in playing their own music.

    I had a long conversation with a fellow reviewer at CES about the Sooloos. His point was that his wife had her CD ripped and playing within 5 min of seeing the system. That could never happen on a PC system.

    Plus if the Cirrus Logic DAC is actually done well - it could actually sound very good. Though I wish it had more 'audiophile' esk RCA connectors.
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  4. #4
    Music Junkie E-Stat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by atomicAdam
    His point was that his wife had her CD ripped and playing within 5 min of seeing the system. That could never happen on a PC system.
    My wife knows she can just hand it to me.

    rw

  5. #5
    Administrator Site Administrator atomicAdam's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by E-Stat
    My wife knows she can just hand it to me.

    rw
    Manly thou art.

    Well - my argument is that I don't want to listen to that crap anyways. But the point being - music servers will hopefully continue to drop in price. And personally for me - using mainly a laptop - a music server is easier than wires run across the room from my laptop to my system.
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  6. #6
    Music Junkie E-Stat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by atomicAdam
    ...a music server is easier than wires run across the room from my laptop to my system.
    Definitely agree. I connect a SB Touch in the garage using wireless.

    rw

  7. #7
    Ajani
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    The only hangup I've had with the O3 is the lack of digital outputs... So it lacks the flexibility of being able to add an external DAC as a potential upgrade... So if you like the sound then great, but if you upgrade your setup and the O3 becomes the weak point, then you've got to buy a new music server...

  8. #8
    Administrator Site Administrator atomicAdam's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ajani
    The only hangup I've had with the O3 is the lack of digital outputs... So it lacks the flexibility of being able to add an external DAC as a potential upgrade... So if you like the sound then great, but if you upgrade your setup and the O3 becomes the weak point, then you've got to buy a new music server...
    bingo.

    but the 3HD uses a 24 bit cirrus logic chip. the electrocomoaneit uses one also. $2400 for that cdp. if the chip is similar, and the design of the other circuits us good, than there is a lot of poteinal.

    that is why im curious how it sounds.
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  9. #9
    Music Junkie E-Stat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ajani
    The only hangup I've had with the O3 is the lack of digital outputs.
    That would immediately rule it out for me. Quite an oversight when far less expensive units provide that ability.

    rw

  10. #10
    Administrator Site Administrator atomicAdam's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by E-Stat
    That would immediately rule it out for me. Quite an oversight when far less expensive units provide that ability.

    rw
    What unit is far less expensive and comparable in other specs. 24bit - 1500CDs - touch screen - streaming radio? Besides a computer - name a unit that has this and digital out that is less than $999.
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  11. #11
    Ajani
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    Quote Originally Posted by E-Stat
    That would immediately rule it out for me. Quite an oversight when far less expensive units provide that ability.

    rw
    Yep, that was exactly the point I made about the O3 on another forum... I think the inability to use an external DAC will limit its use for many audiophiles... Digital out would not have jacked up the price... even $50 DVD players have it....

    I suppose the logic is that audiophiles should purchase it like a CDP, and when they want a better one, just buy a more expensive Olive unit... Keep in mind many audiophiles just swap out CDPs, rather than adding external DACs... Of course, the difference is that with the Olive you'll also have to transfer your entire music collection to the new Music Server...

  12. #12
    Administrator Site Administrator atomicAdam's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ajani
    Yep, that was exactly the point I made about the O3 on another forum... I think the inability to use an external DAC will limit its use for many audiophiles... Digital out would not have jacked up the price... even $50 DVD players have it....

    I suppose the logic is that audiophiles should purchase it like a CDP, and when they want a better one, just buy a more expensive Olive unit... Keep in mind many audiophiles just swap out CDPs, rather than adding external DACs... Of course, the difference is that with the Olive you'll also have to transfer your entire music collection to the new Music Server...
    It could just be that it sounds good. Besides - lets take a $1000 CDP - pretty pricey for some people - plus we all know that price doesn't alway equal quality in this hobby. It very well could be that a $1000 Olive 3HD with Cirrus Logic DAC, if done well, could easily source a $10k complementary system, or higher. How knows - that is why I'm very curious what it sounds like.
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  13. #13
    Ajani
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    Quote Originally Posted by atomicAdam
    It could just be that it sounds good. Besides - lets take a $1000 CDP - pretty pricey for some people - plus we all know that price doesn't alway equal quality in this hobby. It very well could be that a $1000 Olive 3HD with Cirrus Logic DAC, if done well, could easily source a $10k complementary system, or higher. How knows - that is why I'm very curious what it sounds like.
    I agree that it is absolutely worth an audition... There are many persons who use my $1K Benchmark DAC1 to source a $10K or higher system, so it is possible that the Olive is good enough to be used as a serious front end, even with a moderately expensive setup...

    However, the first review I read for the Olive was not a compliment to its sound quality:

    http://whathifi.com/Review/Olive-O3HD/

    Basically they felt you could obtain better sound from a Marantz CD6003 (which costs a third of the price of the Olive)....

    And the other review I've read doesn't mention how it sounds compared to a CDP:

    http://www.techradar.com/reviews/aud...-915911/review

    IMO, Olive has missed out on the opportunity to make money from audiophiles who would have used the O3 as digital transport to feed their more expensive DACs... Much in the way, many of us use a Squeezebox... Unlike the Squeezebox, the Olive would have storage and easy CD ripping (so need for a computer at all)... So I could see many audiophiles paying the premium over the Squeezebox, for the extra convenience of the Olive...

    $1K for a complete music server is still a good price and makes the Olive a must audition product, but I just can't think of a good reason why they excluded a digital output...
    Last edited by Ajani; 01-29-2011 at 06:01 PM.

  14. #14
    Administrator Site Administrator atomicAdam's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ajani
    I agree that it is absolutely worth an audition... There are many persons who use my $1K Benchmark DAC1 to source a $10K or higher system, so it is possible that the Olive is good enough to be used as a serious front end, even with a moderately expensive setup...

    However, the first review I read for the Olive was not a compliment to its sound quality:

    http://whathifi.com/Review/Olive-O3HD/

    Basically they felt you could obtain better sound from a Marantz CD6003 (which costs a third of the price of the Olive)....

    And the other review I've read doesn't mention how it sounds compared to a CDP:

    http://www.techradar.com/reviews/aud...-915911/review
    Hummm... Thanks Ajani - I'll read those.
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  15. #15
    Music Junkie E-Stat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by atomicAdam
    What unit is far less expensive and comparable in other specs. 24bit - 1500CDs - touch screen - streaming radio? Besides a computer - name a unit that has this and digital out that is less than $999.
    The answer is a computer. You could get a far more powerful and capable Dell with a dual core i3-550 with 4 GB memory and 500 GB disk feeding a Squeezebox Touch for less.

    rw

  16. #16
    Administrator Site Administrator atomicAdam's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by E-Stat
    The answer is a computer. You could get a far more powerful and capable Dell with a dual core i3-550 with 4 GB memory and 500 GB disk feeding a Squeezebox Touch for less.

    rw
    But a Squeezebox isn't a DAC. So you are missing a piece.
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  17. #17
    Music Junkie E-Stat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by atomicAdam
    But a Squeezebox isn't a DAC. So you are missing a piece.
    You are quite mistaken. It has 24/96 capability out of the box. Admittedly, I bypass its internal DAC and use a Manley DAC with a tube linestage.



    rw

  18. #18
    Administrator Site Administrator atomicAdam's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by E-Stat
    You are quite mistaken. It has 24/96 capability out of the box. Admittedly, I bypass its internal DAC and use a Manley DAC with a tube linestage.

    rw

    Fair enough - but then you don't get that easy to use factor - you have now three electrical outlets used.

    But hey - look - I'm totally on your side with using a computer. But not everyone wants to do that. And honestly - at this point - with my set up - I don't want to do it either. I have 1 laptop and an out of commission desktop.

    If I can get something that sounds as good as the Electrocompaniet CP-1 but a music server - for $1k - I'd take that space saving easy to use component over another computer in a heart beat.
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  19. #19
    Music Junkie E-Stat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by atomicAdam
    Fair enough - but then you don't get that easy to use factor - you have now three electrical outlets used.
    Outlets are not a problem. As for ease of use, the Touch has a iPhone like touch screen with all the capability you could want. Speaking of iPhones, I use mine as a Wi-Fi remote control for the Touch. I have full control of it from anywhere around the house.

    Quote Originally Posted by atomicAdam
    And honestly - at this point - with my set up - I don't want to do it either. I have 1 laptop and an out of commission desktop.
    Fair enough. I already have an i7-860 based desktop in my office which runs 24/7 that I use for business, personal finance, etc. A Touch doesn't require a dedicated server. Already had a Wi-Fi network. All I added was the $270 Touch. That and a $250 linear power supply for higher performance.

    rw

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