Full system replacement - Uniti star or separates

archieplus4

Novice Member
Hi everyone, new poster here.

I'm looking to replace my student era Cambridge audio system (Azur 340a Amp, S30 speakers, broken CD5 CD player) and keep hold of my Project Debut iii turntable. We're also building an extension and I'd like a wireless speaker to go in there when it eventually gets finished. We've also got a Yamaha YSB 2700 with the TV and Libratone Zipp 2 in the kitchen. I steam to these via airplay. I've had a pair of Focal XS Book active speakers with my Mac Mini, which I really like, but they are coming to the end of their useful life. The computer is normally in the same room as the hifi. Source is either Spotify or iTunes, with a bit of vinyl and a load of old CDs (some digitised, some not). I rarely listen at high volume.

Room size approx. 3.5x4.5m

I've seen the following, which while rather over budget looks like a great deal, particularly with the Muso QB thrown in.

Thinking of pairing with something like these
Advantages - does pretty much everything I need. Convenient.
Disadvantage - over budget. Can't replace individual components if it stops working.

Ideally I'd like to keep spend to £2k or less, including the wireless speaker. Was thinking along these lines

Yamaha WXC50 (Which I think would also allow me to steam from the turntable, which has a built in pre-amp)
Same or similar speakers to above. Open to suggestion but would need to be bookshelf and have grills (children)
Total c2k

Advantages - cheaper. More flexible (future upgrades), easier to replace individual components if they break)
Disadvantages - less wife friendly (wires!). Doesn't tie together as well for day to day use.

All advice considered!
 

xmb

Well-known Member
To allow multi-room with your existing YSB 2700 I would stick with Yamaha.
To keep operation simple I would look at the R-N802D (£489) to go with the CD player you mentioned. This would save money to add a sub woofer at a later date (which is easy to integrate due to the R-N802D room correction features). You could also look at the MusicCast Vinyl 500 to replace your turntable and allow streaming records to anywhere. Add in some MusicCast 50 wireless speakers and you have a simple to use common system.
 

archieplus4

Novice Member
Thanks. That makes some sense, although I’m not wedded to Yamaha, we probably listen to less music on the sitting room than elsewhere. Couple of questions:

Is room correction worthwhile? The room in question, while relatively square, has doors in opposite corners making speaker placement a bit awkward.

Are the MusicCast 50s any good?

Am I on the right track with speakers? Obviously having to‘ buy deaf’ at the moment and want to push the button relatively quickly.
 

xmb

Well-known Member
The MusicCast 50 seem to hold their own against similar speakers. Given you can get a refurbished unit for £200 it is really good value.

Room correction can make a big difference, especially if a sub woofer needs integration. High end room correction, as offered by the Lyngdorf TADI-1120 or NAD M10 can really be beneficial, especially in difficult rooms.

Buying speakers without listening is always difficult, as your ears won't be the same as someone else's ear preference. However, if you like the sound from your current Focal then hopefully the new ones will match your taste.

Sticking with Yamaha offers a easy route to multi-room without replacing what you have. However, I would only select AirPlay 2 components now, as I tend to stream using Apple Music (so all but the MusicCast 50 and Vinyl 500 are out).
 

archieplus4

Novice Member
Appreciate the replies. Sounds like it will fit my needs.

So, if I’ve understood it correctly, the network capability of the RN802 allows me to stream from connected non-digital sources to other components within the Yamaha ecosystem. But it’s not airplay 2 so can only do multi room to other MusicCast devices. If I’ve only got 1 non Yamaha device I’m not missing out on much.

In terms of speakers I’m assuming whatever I choose will be a significant improvement over the status quo. Given I can’t audition and previous experience is positive focal seems a good option.
 

xmb

Well-known Member
Yes, you would use the MusicCast for multi-room. The Zipp will still work as an AirPlay speaker on its own, or via AirPlay 2 with the MusicCast 50 as multi-room. At the £200 price replace it with another MusicCast 50!

I am sure those parts will be a great upgrade from what you have. Call PT to see if they will price match the Focal with RS, then you can buy from one place and reduce deliveries.
 

1992

Active Member
Hey Archie, It sounds to me like it may be worth considering whether you want to prioritise sound quality or convenience/connectivity.

If it's quality, you may want to demo some amps and speakers when possible. If you like the Naim/Focal sound as you've implied, I think the Naim 5SI is absolutely fantastic. But it may not be for you, which I why I suggest trying some.

If you want to focus on connectivity, then you should look at systems that will easily integrate with your house, like the ones that have been mentioned. It seems that the bigger mass-market companies, like Yamaha, do well with this.

One other thing about wireless speakers--you can get some perfectly adequate wireless speakers for cheap. I've always been impressed by a friend's Sonos speaker for a £100-200!
 

archieplus4

Novice Member
I’m looking for an improvement in sound from the main system plus convenience in the rest of the house.

So 3 options

1) sound and convenience (uniti star)
More than I’d like to spend, justified by bargain status

2) compromise on convenience (Naim 5si)
Presumably connected to something like the wxc 50 to provide networking (or is this a weak link)

3) compromise on sound (RN802)

As all of these are a significant step up in sound from the status quo I’ll probably be happy with 3)
 

xmb

Well-known Member
In general you should spend the same if not more on your speakers than the amplifier. Therefor, the R-N802D is well matched in price and performance to your intended speakers.
 

archieplus4

Novice Member
I enquired with PT earlier to see if they could do a bundle deal. They came back saying they don’t hold the Focals in stock and pushing me towards Kef or Dali. I don’t have any direct experience of these (and demoing is obviously out). There’s the option to source the Focals separately but is it worth looking at either of these? I think the LS50s don’t have any grills, which doesn’t mix well with little fingers.
 

archieplus4

Novice Member
Going to order the RN803d and a pair of Dali Menuets, I’ll probably add in the MusicCast 50 too. Thanks for the advice. Excited!
 

Ascotbilly

Active Member
I listened in on a demo using Dali Menuets a while back. Great sounding speakers !
 

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