AWARD: Melco N1A | Stereophile Class A Recommended Components
Melco N1A wins Stereophile Class A Recommended Components for Media Players!
Stereophile Class A Recommended Components is the top honor, for only the greatest products. Not only does it rank amongst the very best of digital source components, it is the least expensive on the list! At $1999, Stereophile rates this as the very best audiophile server you can buy, excepting devices three times its price. How's that for a recommendation? Have a top quality network streamer/player or USB-DAC? The Melco N1A Music Library is the component you need to take it to the next level. Available in silver or black. Want something even better? Check out the new N1ZH. Ready to hear it? Find a Retailer near you to experience Melco.
What they had to say:
The audio division of Japanese manufacturer Melco—the parent company of the ginormous computer-peripheral manufacturer Buffalo Incorporated—is resurrected as a maker of networked audio components. The new N1A server, which Melco calls a High Resolution Digital Music Library, contains 4TB of (Seagate) internal storage, the contents of which can be converted to analog by means of Ethernet connection to a network (or direct to a network player), or USB connection to a USB DAC. (Direct-connected network players must offer a hardware-based means of controlling playback.) Using an NDK ultra-low-jitter clock, the N1A also reclocks all data before scooting it on its way.
As ML put it, "The Melco N1A Buffaloed my combination of MacBook Pro and Synology NAS. It destroyed them, embarrassed them, gave them a good schooling. Music sounded obviously—frighteningly—more refined, more spacious, and more natural through the N1A. End of story. I can't imagine anyone in this universe who does nothing else while listening to music making the same comparison and not hearing this difference."
*It should be noted that there is one error in this review that we would like to address.
The “Player Mode” does not need to be engaged to enjoy the benefits of the Player ethernet output (the direct to player connection). Without engaging this mode, the player ethernet output will allow the use of UPnP control applications via your home network, such as those used on mobile devices, while still providing the best possible sound quality. Your home network is attached to the LAN ethernet port. The N1A and therefore your network player now has access to your home network (including WiFi and internet service), and any devices attached to it. We are working with Stereophile to have this error corrected.*