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Meridian Sooloos/DPS speakers, alternatives?

Discussion in 'Hi Fi Systems & Separates' started by Nealataugust, Jan 13, 2012.

  1. Nealataugust

    Nealataugust Member

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    It has been a few years since I last updated my system but it now its time for a change and boy have things changed! A dealer introduced me to Sooloos 15 and the Meridian DPS speaker range.

    I love the idea of easily accessing all my music via a monitor and internet radio, ( my other half loves the lack of clutter! ) and the sound from the speakers is superb but in truth it seems an awful lot of money for what it is - I am no buff but I like the big sound stage with clarity and know how I like my music to sound. £12k plus for the control 15 and 5200 speakers - I am sure a traditional set up could sound just as good for less even if it means getting up to change the CD in the player!

    Any advice would be welcome on whether that is money well spent or what alternatives should be considered.
  2. nowayman

    nowayman Member

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    Hi,
    Its great to hear that you have been introduced to the light :D
    I have been with a pretty much full Meridian set up for a few years now and still blows me away. Gone are the days where I have to wonder what will happen if I tweak here and there with swapping out components and cables ect.... Its great to just sit back and enjoy what its all about, the MUSIC.

    Anyway, onto your question. In short, Meridian have just announced a brand spanking new and FREE ipad app that pretty much does all what the C15 unit does but on a slick hand help ipad. This way you will need the following:

    - Sooloos MC200
    - a DSP speaker of your choice. The DSP5200 is an awesome choice
    - Ipad if you have not already got one
    - No need for cables as you can use fully balanced speaker link cables suppled.

    So this total will cost approximately: 7K for speakers plus 2k for the MC200

    This has reduced your costs significantly. This is also asuming that you absolutely top money for the products. Most dealers would allow room for negotiation.

    Here is a link that explains all the app functions:
    http://www.meridian-audio.info/public/mscca-ds[3916].pdf

    You can also check out the brand new and more compact speaker that has also just been announced at the CES show called the M6:
    http://www.meridian-audio.com/media/341068/m6-ds.pdf

    Then all you have to do is hook up the three units and you have a top end system without additional heavy and power consuming power amps and unsightly cables. You will no longer be thinking about shelling out big money for pricey interconnects ect.....

    I would imagine you heard a demo of the Meridian set up at the dealer. What did you think?
  3. pmeister

    pmeister Member

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    Hi, I have a Meridian system, g series processor, 5200s front & centre, dsp33 on the rear and an sw1600 sub, using ps3 for Blu ray, well just thought I would add something here, I have been a music / movie buff for years, bought and upgraded many times, always trying to find that blend of realism, scale, power and control. Well the answer was not as easy as it seemed, combining a system that blended timing, deliver, scale and impact whist still having finesse is a real challenge for audio manufacturers. Well I can tell you that once you ve listened in depth to any Meridian DSP based system you will simply be overwhelmed, two worlds in one package, a perfect blend when taking into consideration the two very different parameters that go with trying to fuse 2 channel stereo sound with 5 channel movie sound tracks. Trust me when I say you will always compromise on one or the other whilst trying to bring these two together. Now getting back to the Control 15, I have just set up my MC200, basically same as above but without the Control 15 interface, which I must say the iPad is just as capable of controlling the MC200 with just as much flare and functionality. Result, another awesome product, so if I was you go for pre used pair of DSP5200s or the newer smaller model, match it with an MC200 and as a channel system,, well jobs a goodun as they say. If you need further advise sign up at The Hitchikers Guide To Meridian, awesome site full of Meridian geeks and some really cool dealers selling on there, I would highly recommend, Audio Excellence ( Sheffield ) , Peter Tyson (Carlisle, Newcastle ), Loud & Clear ( Edinburgh ), HiFi Corner ( Edinburgh, advice from Meridian Guru that is the mighty Struan ). Enjoy your trip to audio heaven !!!!!!
  4. Nealataugust

    Nealataugust Member

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    Thanks Guys for your thoughts. Yes the set up sounded great even though in the dealer I visited there were not in the dem room. Forgive my ignorance but what would the process be for copying CD's onto the MC200 without any loss of quality, I assume there is no CD drive in the 200? Also what room for manouvre do you think a dealer has on the RRP of Meridian kit?

    You have convinced me this is the way to go I think!
  5. Avi

    Avi Well-Known Member

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    Replaced by the days of wondering what will happen if I swap/tweak the version of Meridian firmware/software components. ;)
  6. Avi

    Avi Well-Known Member

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    There's nothing magical about the ripping process used by M or its source of metadata. The MC200 is a PC motherboard connected via USB (don't know what protocol is used) to a Meridian daughter board (powered via USB ?) in a box with a HDD using the same power supply. If you're using M DSP's the daughter board's S/PDIF output will be employed.

    Meridian dealers tend to gravitate to a 10% discount as a token but can go much higher if so inclined.
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2012
  7. amcluesent

    amcluesent Moderator

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  8. pmeister

    pmeister Member

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    Hi Again, The only way if getting a little more discount my friend is to find 2 dealers in one city ! Edinburgh has that exact scenario ! Up to 20 is possible. Got got £400 of my Soolos. Can let you know via text message, re privacy for the dealer.
  9. nowayman

    nowayman Member

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    I havnt even loaded the new Firmware software as I'm in no hurry and just have not really had the time to mess about with it. The sound still blows me away every time I listen to it.

    Basically if you have this system you spin your CDs on a laptop/desktop PC or Mac. As long as it is connected to he same router it will wirelessly rip the CD FLAC files directly to the MC200. I use a MacBook pro and it works great.

    If you are thinking of investing in new Meridian DSP speakers you will be connecting via balanced speakerlink and not SPDIF connection. This is a proprietary meridian connection and is top notch. I used to have a meridian G98DH before nd the sooloos was a significant step up in audio quality in my room.

    Are you a two channel audio or a home cinema guy?
  10. Nealataugust

    Nealataugust Member

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    Thanks Again, 2 channel audio only, not fussed with home cinema
  11. Avi

    Avi Well-Known Member

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    In isolation things can sound great but when compared directly to something different things may seem less great.

    Oops yes how could I forget Speakerlink output. That said it uses common AES/EBU (AES3) digital standard for transmission (despite the impedance spec difference) over a couple of the wires in a standard CAT5/6 cable (M DSP speakers are limited to 24/96 LPCM max input) and some of the other wires are used for M comms. This is why it's easy for products i.e. Reviver to recover S/PDIF (also based on AES3) and separate comms from SL to allow it to work with S/PDIF M products. Nothing particularly special beyond marketing and the fact it's a bit more install friendly compared to running separate S/PDIF/comms cables.

    I'm also familiar with Sooloos and other M products. My advice to the OP is go listen to some different options.

    Avi
    Last edited: Jan 15, 2012
  12. Nealataugust

    Nealataugust Member

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    Its been a few weeks but I ended up investing in a Control 15, boy however I have had some problems, the initial unit failed to operate at all and had to be returned, a week later I acquired the replacement but this lasted 24 hours before failing due to 'Network Errors'. The dealer seems to have been at a loss as to the exact problem ( another story there ) firstly thinking it was the homeplugs they supplied and eventually blaming my router ( A Belkin ). Some CD's have failed to rip at all ( about 5% of those tried ) and the radio and Rhapsody have failed. Has anyone experienced similar problems?

    I am currently awaiting a trial router to arrive to see if that rectifies the problem. Overall very disappointing considering the cost of the product.
  13. DA56

    DA56 Member

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    I have had network problems with my control 15 linking with my other zone. The problem was traced to the mains plugs I was using. Since I have changed my network to ethernet cable via switches the problems have been resolved. If you are using mains plugs I would replace them with Ethernet.
  14. Nealataugust

    Nealataugust Member

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    Thank you. My router is in a detached garage so I have ordered some outdoor Ethernet cable to try that as I think it is the mains plugs too. However even moving the control 15 into the garage and connecting directly to the router it still is having problems ripping some CDs, it will simply not load them onto the system ( they are popular artists and no copies ) have you found that too?

    Meridian insist it is the router ( via the dealer ) and the dealer is looking for £300 plus for a problem solving version!
  15. DA56

    DA56 Member

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    I have had a handful of CDs that are not recognised out of about 800 so it's not a problem that has caused too much grief - I just put it down to rhapsody.
  16. DA56

    DA56 Member

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    I have used two different D-Link routers , my original DIR-635 followed by an upgrade to a gigabit router D-link DIR-655. Both worked fine and cost about £100. If you are using more than one zone you also need multicasting enabled - something else I have learned. It's worth persisting because the system is fantastic!
  17. Nealataugust

    Nealataugust Member

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    That is interesting thank you. I am still waiting for the new router to arrive to test so hopefully that will also solve the CD ripping problem.
  18. Pete2

    Pete2 Member

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    Hi, I know this is a very old thread but how are you getting on with the Sooloos system? I'm looking to buy The mc200 soon. Any help welcome
  19. Nealataugust

    Nealataugust Member

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    I travelled quite a long road to get everything right with my Meridian kit and ended up with a different set up to the one I first set out with! In essence the Sooloos system is simply brilliant but it did take some work to get there. I ended up with four replacement C15's if I remember rightly and after suffering problems with the final one I ended up doing a deal to trade it in and bought a media drive 600 alongside a reference audio core. I now control sooloos via the I pad app.

    At the same time I upgraded the DSP7200's to version 2 and touch wood have never had a problem since but have had massive enjoyment! I was also lucky to find a brilliant small dealer who helped immensely. IMO I don't think you will be disappointed.
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