Streaming audio player

When I started this list in 2008, it was short and populated most of all by upstarts like Slim Devices and Sonos.
Beside an early adaptors as Linn, no typical audio brand had a streamer.
Today most receivers do have Ethernet and/or WIFI supporting UPnP / DLNA, Airplay, etc.
Incorporating streaming audio services  like Spotify or Tidal are becoming common.

 

A streaming audio player is a device with a user interface allowing you to select music sources (servers), to browse their content and select songs to play.
The source could be internet radio stations or your own music collection on a server in your home network.
They are playback only. Maintaining your audio collection (ripping, tagging, etc.) is done on the PC.

 

In general they are quit as there are no moving parts inside like disk drives or cpu-coolers.
They rely on the (home) network to access the audio.
Some allow for local playback from a SD card or a USB thumb drive.

 

A manufacturer might decide to develop his own hardware/software solution.
Often this is based on Linux as this allows gluing all kind of existing modules together.
An alternative is a of the shelf solution like the Stream by Streamunlimited

 


You can buy one of these most of the time rather expensive boxes.
As they contain a computer (running Linux most of the time) you might as well use a computer for streaming audio.
A very popular platform is the Raspberry PI

 

Allo BOSS 1.2 PLAYER, NETWORK MUSIC PLAYER $169.00

 

 

Check if a player supports gapless playback.
Nothing as annoying as some white space in a live album or in case of classical between two movements played as one.