MusicCast is Yamaha’s brand new entry into network audio. It’s not just about music for us, it’s all about sharing every bit of audio around your home and making things easier for you, enriching your life with music and sound.
After all, Yamaha is all about sound. We were founded in 1887 and music (specifically the reed organ) was our first step towards becoming the successful musical company we are today.
There’s been a number of successful launches over the years into brand new areas. In 1986 the DSP-1 was launched, the world’s first home cinema surround processor. Fast forward to 2003 and the world’s first network audio system was launched by Yamaha, originally called MusicCAST. Shortly following, in 2004 the YSP-1 was launched, the world’s first incarnation of the modern soundbar which we know and love today.
In 2015, the next reboot and rebirth of the MusicCast brand has arrived from Yamaha. This time, with a whole new twist on the concept of network audio and how easy it should be to stream not just your music collection but all the sound in the home.
MusicCast is made up of over 20 products to fit your lifestyle and the system goes way beyond just your music collection, it’s not just about playing music off a NAS drive or songs on your smart device. There’s so much more that can be done! With MusicCast you can send the audio stream from something like an HDMI port on your soundbar over to a wireless speaker. Or even simply send the DAB radio from your lifestyle system to your soundbase. Any input on any MusicCast device can be shared to any other MusicCast device. Let’s take the humble AV Receiver as an example, this is no longer just a Home Cinema powerhouse, it’s a network hub with audio sharing capabilities. Or even the R-N602 HiFi Amplifier with phono stage… plug a turntable into that and suddenly the sound from your records can be sent to a soundbar or a wireless speaker or pretty much anything you like!
Every device in the MusicCast eco system features WiFi, Airplay and Bluetooth. The Bluetooth on every product will be able to support incoming signals from something like a smart device but also can output a Bluetooth signal to something like a pair of headphones or a wireless Bluetooth speaker. This means the system can expand far beyond just Yamaha product if needed, of course we’d love the MusicCast system to be used with some of our Bluetooth only audio products from our desktop audio range; but it doesn’t have to be that way. If you’ve got a Bluetooth speaker or Bluetooth headphones from another manufacturer, you can use these with MusicCast.
Hi-Res audio is also supported across the range. All MusicCast products will support Hi-Res audio such as 192/24 FLAC, WAV and AIFF as well as 96/24 ALAC and some of the higher end products will support DSD up to 5.6MHz as well. Using the same information though, if we had for example an AV receiver in our living room and a WX030 wireless speaker in the dining room… the AV receiver can support DSD but the WX030 can’t. No problem, we can link the two together and if the AV receiver is the master room, it can share the DSD stream over to the WX030. MusicCast will automatically down-sample the DSD stream so the WX030 can handle it but you can stream everything, everywhere!
But how to hang it all together? There’s an app that’s free to download for Android and iOS devices called the MusicCast controller. It’s extremely simple to use, one tap to select your room, one tap to select your source and potentially a third tap to select your audio. You can link rooms together, adjust settings per room, control master volumes, view album art… it’s slick and intuitive which is exactly what an app should be. It’s all been designed, developed and implemented completely in-house by Yamaha and there’s a big list of extra features Yamaha will be adding over time so expect updates on a regular basis as time goes on.
As if all of that wasn’t enough, potentially the most exciting product to come out of Yamaha’s engineering lab is the new flagship YSP-5600 sound projector. Designed to offer an unparalleled home cinema experience from a single unit, the YSP-5600 features 44 speakers inside that will bounce sound beams around your walls and ceiling to create a real surround field using our Intellibeam technology. Wall mounting is easy with an optional bracket and there’s a package available with subwoofer included if you like. The best part about this sound projector? It’s the worlds’ first to the market with Dolby Atmos and DTS:X support utilising our sound beam technology, making it a really interesting proposition to someone who wants object based audio but doesn’t want separates.
Steve from AVForums joined us at IFA in September to see MusicCast first hand, check out his thoughts on the system and some of the new products here:
And for those of us that want the short version… here’s a great video explaining what MusicCast is all about!
For more information on MusicCast head over to MusicCast - Audio & Visual - Yamaha - UK and Ireland
We will also be answering questions in this thread related to MusicCast, direct from Yamaha!
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