|ReQuest F Series Music Server|
|Home Theater Media Servers Music Servers|
|Written by Andrew Robinson|
|Saturday, 01 July 2006|
Page 3 of 3
While I enjoyed my time with the ReQuest music server, I did run across a few hiccups. First off, the time it takes to rip a disc to the hard drive is just too long. However, the ReQuest is nothing if not thorough and never faltered, even when presented with badly damaged discs. Still, the ripping process was more a test of my patience than anything else.
Next was the onscreen menu. While the menu itself was very intuitive and easy to use, it didn’t always lock onto my television, which would leave me a bit in the dark and force me to change into my Geek Squad alter ego as I tried to remedy the problem. I have to assume that most of you are going to use the ReQuest in conjunction with a third-party control system, which should provide you with a much easier time. Still, if you’re forced to utilize your television set to access the onscreen menus, be prepared for a few bumps along the road.
Lastly, there is the issue of noise. The fan on the rear of the ReQuest is quite loud and, during low-level listening, very audible from my listening position. I would recommend placing the ReQuest in a closed rack if possible. (NOTE: Since the time of this review ReQuest has upgraded the power supply with a quieter fan.)
With a retail price of $5,000, the ReQuest isn’t cheap. However, you can get into an F Series music server for less and then expand from there, making it a more cost-effective solution if you are on a budget. Certainly you can build or even buy a ready-made music server for a whole lot less, but in that case, you will be getting less. Couple this with the fact that most music servers are built around existing and sometimes troubling operating systems, such as Windows, and the ReQuest begins to look better and better. The ReQuest is a luxury item. Once you’ve lived with it for more than a day, you may find yourself rationalizing the cost. It is, without a doubt, the most reliable music server I’ve encountered, video bugs and all, and is backed by the best customer service I’ve ever seen. Throw in a myriad of features like remote location access and multi-room capability from a single box and it quickly becomes apparent why ReQuest customers continue to pay the relatively steep price tag.