A crash course in multi room madness
Courtesy of our ChiFi chums from across the waters, Arylic have sent the Subjective Offices a tiny little streaming package that promises to take away all your audio emptiness and fill every room with 50W of bone shaking bliss. But how? And how much? And does it make the very ground beneath me shake? Read on Macduff, your answers await in short order….
Arylic A50+. A Wireless Digital Streamer. It handles everything via the app. Or no, it doesn’t. Well, it’s like this. What you have to do is download the 4Stream app first. I hope you have a phone and a Play Store Account by which to do this. If you do, tis easy. Press the mode button in on the back while connecting the mains plug. Then follow the instructions on the app. Don’t worry, it’ll work.
Your A50+ will stop blinking using its solitary light and will show up in the app. The instruction manual should not be discarded at this stage, not if you have a problem with WiFi Streaming on your phone and I’ll explain why. Do not just shrug your shoulders if you, like me, aren’t able to access your local files using the browse facility on the app. You think – “hey! It doesn’t matter! I’ll use Bluetooth instead” don’t you? Ordinarily I’d suggest you go along with that plan, seeing that LDAC is an all but lossless codec, especially if you’re close and stable with your phone. The A50+ doesn’t do LDAC or AptX HD, so to get 44.1 files in 16 bit, you are gonna have to dig a bit deeper, and, believe me when I say, the extra work will be worth it to your ears. The manual will tell you all you need to know and I got lossless files working beautifully from my Windows PC downstairs, whilst I was upstairs. Before we go any further, I’m sure you are wondering what the bottom line is. The price of this seems to be all over the place, but this is what I found on a Google search for the UK.
Arylic will ship to anywhere in the World from their own site. They have this roulette wheel you can spin which may give you a little extra discount – do you feel lucky?
Other stuff you can use – obviously this is a streamer and most of you will just be listening to streaming these days, am I right? Well, this is where the A50+ excels, or is at its best, at least. The Arylic supports lots and lot of the music streaming services, and I had my Amazon Music HD up and running in no time. The A50+ will support up to 24-192 in streaming, although it only goes to 16-44.1 for your local files. Sad, but true. Other stuff it’ll do – usb in, optical in and analogue in, via a single RCA input. So, even a line input at this price level. You can play your cassettes, your CDs, your mini discs, your records…oh you lucky people!
And how….This is a streamer with an integrated amp which will push out 50 watts per channel into 4 Ohms. My speakers, the Monitor Audio Bronze FX2 bookshelf speakers, are 8 Ohm Speakers with a 90 dB sensitivity and a 30-100 Watt Power Handling. In reality, they absolutely filled the living room with sound when hooked up. And there’s more… The A50+ has a sub out connection. I used a coaxial cable and had 2.1 sound. That was too much! It gave me a headache! I turned the sound down and found the EQ setting on the App. It was able to gratefully turn the bass down by 2 notches, and all was once again well with the World.
The beauty of this thing has to be in its diminutive size. You can tuck the thing away anywhere, real discrete like. Your Wife or partner may not even notice any difference in the front room. The single light on the front can be toggled on and off using your remote control, but it’s really quite attractive as is. Did I tell you it’s powerful? It fills a small room easily. It isn’t the last word in audio reproduction, but it could be a really good complement to a lean sounding bookshelf speaker. The wires that are needed; the mains, which has an external switched mode power supply, has some shielding, the coaxial, or analogue out for the sub, makes this into a powerhouse of a unit, and the speaker block, can be taken out of the A50+ to attach the cables with minimal fuss and no risk of scratching the back of your streamer.
A few things I’d have preferred would be a better Bluetooth Codec and a superior Dac Chip. Then I’d get the support I yearn for my DSD and HiRes Files. This is a starter unit at a low low price point so compromises have to be made. I am nevertheless pleased to add this to the list of ChiFi goodies, especially for those of you on a budget. There is n plenty of music for your money to be had here, let me tell you.