Play Itunes on my home stereo

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by bocat, Jul 18, 2008.

  1. bocat macrumors newbie

    Nov 1, 2004
    New Hope, Pa
    I have downloaded most of my CD collection to my Itunes Library on my G5.
    I would love to play it through my home stereo. It is in a differant room.
    A coworker says that using Airport express degrades the sound too much.

    My question is, is there an audio output on the back of the G5 and an audio
    wire that I could run it from the G5 directly through audio jacks to the back of the receiver.

  2. tobefirst macrumors 68040


    Jan 24, 2005
    St. Louis, MO
    Sure, you could run a 1/8" inch to stereo RCA plugs directly into the stereo, or even an optical cable. But the AirPort Express is going to much more elegant. It works, and sounds, great to me (particularly if you run optical from the AE), but I'm no audiophile.
  3. statik13 macrumors regular


    Jun 6, 2008
    The Airport express sends the sound in digital / lossless format so it doesn't degrade at all. It sounds exactly as your original file sounds. It even has an optical out port if your stereo is so equipped.

    I definitely wouldn't bother with running wires any more.
  4. Galley macrumors 65816


    Mar 24, 2008
    Apple TV sounds better than an AirPort Express, even though both are using the same connection type (optical). Don't ask me why. :confused:
  5. bocat thread starter macrumors newbie

    Nov 1, 2004
    New Hope, Pa
  6. bbotte macrumors 65816


    Feb 11, 2008
  7. Greenjeens macrumors regular

    Aug 25, 2005
    I like wires, they are *simple, cheap and if a little care is taken on set up by solidly attaching good quality terminations, very reliable. My favorite terminations rather than bare copper strands are a type of dual banana jack that fit into the back of my amp and plug into the back of the speakers. Only better equipment have these kind of jacks but you can make a couple of pairs of adapters. The advantage is quick connections for trouble shooting or moving speakers/receiver/ amps. Good terminations also avoid bare wire strands from unraveling and shorting out. At least crimp on some terminations with anoxidation proof coating, like gold. Gold/ soldered gold terminations seem to work better for speaker terminations used outdoors or in damp places otherwise the copper or "tinned" (soldered) wire surfaces oxidize quickly and make for bad connections. I put smaller speakers outdoors in nice weather and will usually bring them in at night, but a garbage bag over the entire speaker then twist tied keep out rain and allow sound to come through clearly. The speakers that are weather proof seem to be very small and don't sound very good or the larger ones that can handle some volume and extended frequency range cost seem overly priced but are a good choice for some situations.

    * (Usual disclaimers apply: Leave work to a qualified, licensed professional, including state Licensed termite inspectors. Observe local building codes for acceptable installation for under floor/in wall codes and proper wire covering ratings types. )

    Simple is not always easy, like having to crawl in the basement stringing a pair of speaker wires from computer room to front room/bedroom speakers etc. Once set up the connection is very reliable. Besides it's a good idea to check the crawl space or basement for signs of termite/beetle activity, plumbing leaks, drainage issues etc. In fact I just helped a friend prepare a home for "Vicane" gas tenting for beetles, this week, which is very expensive, once an infestation goes undiscovered for some years.

    So, it's good idea to be down there for an inspection anyway. In fact finding and treating a termite/beetle problem early, can save several thousand dollars (US) or more on costly repairs and/or whole house tenting later. So stringing up speaker wire, while doing a inspection, can save you thousands of dollars:) You can't save thousand of dollars while hooking up airtunes, now can you? ;-)
    When drilling a hole in the floor to pass the wire it's best to have someone above and below and start with a very small diameter drill bit first if your not able to measure where a hole will come through in the basement!
    Just don't drill into electrical wires, alarm wires, plumbing or especially gas pipes:-0 It's difficult to hit something, but the awareness that there are other things inside walls and under floors is

    I have speakers in several rooms and the garage so there's great quality itunes music and the perfect play list available everywhere. I used an old preamp and multichannel amp near my Mac. A remote would be nice If I had a preamp/receiver with a remote, a remote extender kit of some kind would be nice, if only for changing the volume, but not a deal breaker.

    Just remember, if to use a special circuit or external switch box designed to keep the resistance (ohms) up, if hooking two or more sets of speakers. Especially with 4 ohm speakers or 2 sets of speakers that will be playing at high volumes. Multiple speaker pairs on a single speaker output can reduce the resistance the amp "sees", so much more current is pulled than designed for, which can lead to dangerous overheating and failure.
  8. CanadaRAM macrumors G5


    Oct 11, 2004
    On the Left Coast - Victoria BC Canada
    True -- only up to the point where the AE converts the sound from digital to analog with its $1.19 D/A convertors. That's where the sound can get coloured. Better D/As = better sound

    Correct, if you send it by optical digital into an amp or receiver with a digital decoder, then your D/A conversion will be done by the presumably much higher quality D/As in the receiver.
  9. Julien macrumors G4


    Jun 30, 2007
    Actually iTunes doesn't send lossless to the Airport like it should but converts lossless to VBR 120Kbps (between about 90Kbps to 140Kbps and assume its AAC but don't know). This is a pet peeve of mine and was hoping to find out from Apple why this is done and if it can be changed to lossless.
  10. CHRISCAB macrumors newbie

    Aug 31, 2008
    Question re wifi networks

    Hi. I am new to the forum. I am utterly confused with respect to home networks. Here is my question(s):

    I have a wireless internet connection through my cable provider and a pc. I am a home theater buff and plan to get the Apple tv, an ipod touch, and a macbook. The idea is to hook the Apple tv up to my stereo via digital connection and use the ipod touch as a remote using the remote app. I was about to go buy all this when i learned that using the ipod touch as a remote requires a home wifi network which i do not have (also, I would like to be able to stream music and photos from the macbook to the apple tv).

    Now my questions:
    (1) what is the easiest way for me to set up a home wifi network? What do I need to do this? I've searched online and seem to be unable to comprehend this (I'm pretty computer illiterate)

    (2) for the time being, can i just get a macbook and an airport express and hook the airport express to the stereo (via optical connection) and stream music to the stereo wirelessly from the macbook? It doesn't seem that anything more is required to do this at least.

    (3) for the future, when i get the apple tv and the ipod touch (to use as a remote) how is this all hooked up and what do i need to do?

    I realize these questions are broad and reek of ignorance, but I really appreciate any and help you can offer.

  11. Galley macrumors 65816


    Mar 24, 2008
  12. Philsy macrumors 6502a

    Jul 29, 2004
    South coast of England
    Interesting thread for me.

    I've just been playing with a friend's Sonos system which is good, but expensive and ugly.

    It occurred to me that I could achieve a similar thing using iTunes on my Mac and the Remote app on my iPod Touch.

    Question is, what's the best way to link my Mac to my Arcam Solo hifi? A wired connection isn't practical, so the obvious choice is Airport Express but I believe that the DAC isn't that good, so another thought is to use the digital output from the AE and link to a better DAC (sadly the Solo doesn't have a digital input). Any thoughts on this? Will the Remote app work when music is being streamed to an Airport Express?

    I'm concerned to read here that iTunes doesn't transmit lossless files to the AE. Is this really true? If so, I'm wasting my time.

    Another option is Apple TV but I don't like the idea of having to turn on the TV every time I want to select some music. But can I get around this by using the Touch as a remote again? If so, does Apple TV have a better DAC and does it cope with lossless?


  13. gold03 macrumors newbie

    Apr 25, 2008
    I have a 23500 song collection that I play over my wireless network. I use two airport express. one is attached to a pair of speakers in the bedroom that have their own power source, the other is attached to a Sony receiver in the living room. Works great when we have a party, I take the powered speakers from the bedroom out side and hook it up there. I'm not sure about sound degradation, never had that problem.
  14. ljsflash macrumors newbie

    Nov 10, 2009
    I don't have the Airport Express but I do have a 1TB Time Capsule. Can it do the same as the Airport Express? Do I still need to buy the A.E. to stream iTunes?

  15. Cartaphilus macrumors 6502a

    Dec 24, 2007
    I have a half-dozen Airport Express units installed in our house, each attached to an amplifier/speaker system or to powered speakers. I'd like to think that I can fully appreciate good sound, but I also have to recognize there are very sophisticated aficionados willing to spend a lot more than I am to eke out what I would consider to be insignificant improvements. Nonetheless, where I really listen to music (as opposed to background) and have the AE streaming to a good receiver and speakers, the sound is every bit as good to my ears as that from a CD. Before concluding that the quality of sound reproduction through an AE would be dissatisfying to you, I'd recommend you borrow one from someone, or ask for a demo in the Apple Store to listen for yourself. Or just buy one and see. Even if you later decide to go in a different direction, the AE is the perfect portable wireless router. I pack one for hotels that have just an ethernet cord, or when visiting the homes of people who don't have wifi. It creates a robust network with surprising coverage. You can also use it with any USB printer to be able to print wirelessly from anywhere your wifi network reaches.

    And if you have an iPhone, you can use the Remote app to send any audio from your iTunes Library to any AE/speaker in the house, change the music, change the volume, etc.

    You can also plug just headphones into an AE anywhere in the house to listen privately, or even connect a Bluetooth transmitter to the AE and listen on a wireless Bluetooth headset.

    And if you get Airfoil, you can stream any audio from your browser or any other application through your AE. I play internet radio stations through my speakers this way.

    Oh, and you should also know that both iTunes and Airfoil support simultaneous synchronized streaming to multiple AE's, so when I have the house to myself, I stream to all of mine, and I have music throughout the house when I'm moving around.

    To me the Airport Express is the most under-rated, under-marketed product Apple makes. At $99 it's a lot of tech for the price.
  16. cr8054 macrumors newbie

    Jan 19, 2010
    If your G5 has an audio jack, you can get a audio jack to RCA adapter and then plug it into the AUX port on your stereo. Works pretty good. You may have to fiddle with the volume settings of your computer and the stereo a bit for the best sound. Oh and if your stereo has the capability of surround sound, turn it off. The music will sound like crap if you dont.
  17. DLary macrumors member

    Oct 21, 2005

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