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Sonore microRendu Ethernet to USB Streamer Review  Print E-mail
Home Theater Accessories Acoustics, EQ & Room Tuning
Written by Andre Marc   
Tuesday, 23 August 2016
Article Index
Sonore microRendu Ethernet to USB Streamer Review 
Set Up and Performance
Concclusion
 

Set Up

From unboxing to installation, I had music streaming to the microRendu in ten minutes flat. Set up included plugging in a Rosewill Cat 7 ethernet cable, the power supply, and running a USB cable into the Simaudio 280D DAC.  Then I called up the microRendu on my Mac Mini’s web browser in my office, selected DLNA, made sure there was a connection to the Simaudio DAC, and that was it. Running in the background on the Mac Mini was MiniMServer, and BubbleUPnP, which allowed me to use the nifty Linn Kazoo iPad app for control of my 10 TB library. Also included in the chain was a SOtM Lan Filter (I highly recommend a LAN filter).

The rest of the system consisted of an Aric Audio Expression tube preamp, an Onkyo M5000R power amp, and Magnepan MMG speakers. Cables were Wireworld all around. Everything was plugged into an Audience power conditioner. The 10 TB library is housed on G-Tech drives attached to the remote Mac Mini.

A quick bit of history. In this system I have had numerous streamers. A brief sampling includes the Simaudio Moon MiND 180D, the now discontinued SOtM sMS-100, multiple Marantz models and, going way back, a Squeezebox Touch (a true classic). All performed very well, and a few were undervalued in my opinion. A few had their quirks, and varying degrees of setup ease.

Sonore microRendu

Performance

To get right to it, the Sonore microRendu is the highest value, best performing, and purest sounding Ethernet to USB file streamer I have encountered in this system. The level of sophistication, the quality of the imaging, and the overall transparency is simply beyond reproach. I’ve seen chatter about DIY solutions that have the potential to equal or better the microRendu, but in direct comparisons, to my ears, this is wishful thinking.

Across my usual broad spectrum of music, the microRendu had excellent tonal balance, a “reach out and touch it” realism, and a way of presenting every recording with great depth. I had never heard the Simaudio 280D sound this good, and mind you, it is a superb sounding DAC, but like every other digital source component, the better it gets, the better gives.

Sonor microRendu

Streaming most of the discography of Jade Warrior, the legendary progressive art rock band, was pure bliss. The band called upon Eastern influences and experimental rock to create expansive soundscapes that the microRendu recreated beautifully. The albums have been very well remastered for CD, and the streamed FLAC files had a very nice analog like quality to them. Albums such as Floating World, Waves, Kites, Last Autumn’s Dream, and their self-titled masterpiece from 1971 were addicting, and I had a hard time shutting the system down!

I shifted gears slightly and called up numerous Robin Trower tracks from the several Chrysalis Years box sets, all mastered well, with plenty of punch. Trower’s guitar was molten lava, and Jemes Dewar’s bass and vocals were placed perfectly in the soundstage, as I remembered back in the day. I was very taken with the way the microRendu preserved the heaviness of these recordings, and intensity of the bluesy psychedelic vibe. Albums like For Earth Below, Victims Of The Fury, and In City Dreams were transportive.



 

 
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