back to article Arcam Solo Neo combo hi-fi

British hi-fi stalwart Arcam’s original Neo first appeared back in 2004 and quickly earned a place for itself as an audiophile approved, quality combi system. Various incarnations followed (Solo Movie, Solo Mini) and now the Solo Neo updates the concept by adding Internet radio and network streaming music to its audio arsenal of …

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  1. Elmer Phud

    No Knobs?

    "there are only limited tweaking options on board, with an on-screen slider each for bass and treble and a bass correction setting that beefs up the low end for smaller speakers "

    With decent kit there shouldn't be much of a need to tweak, maybe just the once but then leave the bloody thing alone. Most audio stuff could do with a 'loudness'* switch as it's rarely turned up to drive things properly but that's it.

    Want one.

    *a loudness switch? burn the heretic!

    1. Anomalous Cowturd
      FAIL

      "Audiophile" equipment with no phono input?

      See icon...

  2. plrndl
    FAIL

    20th Century Box

    Where's the iPod dock?

  3. ShaggyDoggy

    Portable

    "portable it ain’t" - it's mains powered you numpty

  4. garyi

    Naim

    I'll take a unitiqute by naim thanks

  5. Fuzz

    doesn't seem that great for £1350

    I don't think that USB port could be in a worse position. If you've got some chunky RCAs in the game input then you're not going to be plugging any slightly overweight USB sticks into that port.

    If the mp3 playback sounds worse than an iphone then that's a monumental failure sound played through the iphone will be using it's own DAC.

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    At GBP 1350 take a careful look at the Naim UnitiQute

    If you can do without a CD player or you have ripped your CD collection to ALAC, FLAC or WAV take a look at the Naim UnitiQute. It offers a more useful range of digital and analog inputs including a front mounted digital iPhone/iPod connection, so no dock is required. There is an iOS app.

    The killer feature for me is the ability to feed high quality ALAC files from iTunes via an Apple TV (connected to a digital input) or open source FLAC files from Network Attached Storage. It can handle file formats up to 24bit/96kHz making downloads from high end audio stores sound fantastic.

    After testing both units at home I found the UnitiQute was a more complete solution as I didn't need a CD player anymore.

  7. MnM
    Thumb Up

    Or the Linn DS range

    Proper British Hi Fi (like Naim), open standards and software development, technically superior, and (I think) the first bona fide hi-fi company to release a genuine stream player. They're awesome, I have two :)

    No ipod dock though, and there never will be: http://blogs.linn.co.uk/giladt/2010/09/its-not-an-apple-world-its-a-networked-world.php

  8. Real Ale is Best
    Boffin

    IPv6?

    As we are approaching IPv6 actually being rolled out (see http://isoc.org/wp/worldipv6day/), I'm increasingly wondering if these sort of devices can talk it.

    Can Reg reviews please include this feature, please?

  9. Colin Wilson 2
    FAIL

    Digital Input?

    No Optical Digital Input?

    Fail :(

  10. Scott Mckenzie

    UnitiQute...

    ....i wasn't aware it supported ALAC just yet, it keeps being promised but that delight is presently only reserved for the HDX range. FLAC etc no problem, but ALAC streamed from a NAS is a no go!

    As for the Arcam, the absolute best speakers i've found to suit it are the Focal/JM-Lab Chorus 700 series - the 705v a sensible choice.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Naim UnitiQute ALAC playback clarification.

      Just to clarify my earlier post. The UnitiQute can't natively stream, dig out, pull etc. ALAC. This is reserved for FLAC files. Naim like many of its competitors are not very keen on proprietary formats.

      What I do is stream ALACs from iTunes to an Apple TV 2 connected to a digital input or from a Mac Mini directly connected via a digital input. This was you get the benefit of using the Apple Remote app and ALACs. One bonus with the Apple TV 2 method is that it buffers the audio to it's internal flash storage which makes for smoother less noisy playback.

  11. Some Beggar
    FAIL

    Oh good grief.

    "I found that the same tracks sounded considerably better when played back from an iPhone connected to the irDock"

    So the Wolfson DAC and common-or-garden crystal used in most iphones/pods/pads sounds better than the Wolfson DAC and low-jitter crystal in this bit of kit? Does that mean these audiophile components are a load of pony or your hearing is shot?

    Or perhaps it simply means that you should use actual test kit to review audio equipment rather than a fallible old pair of human ears. Hey! Maybe then you could then give some actual information on performance rather than such trite and meaningless adjectives as "detailed", "transparent" and "clinical".

    Fucking "clinical". For the love of fuck.

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