Today, wireless music broadcasting has become a standard adopted by all and above all, it is becoming more and more qualitative to the delight of the ears and our audio and Hi-Fi equipment.
To be able to stream music in very high quality, there are many possibilities available to you.
A dongle is the budget solution
The simplest solution to make already existing system wireless when it is not natively is to equip it with a wireless dongle if you use a budget configuration because even in the best stereo receiver under $200 you will not find built-in Bluetooth. Such a dongle most economical solution consists of connecting a wireless receiver to the line input of your amplifier or your Hi-Fi system. Several protocols exist, but the most widespread technology by far remains Bluetooth, in which there are two standards to consider: AD2P and APT-X. For audio quality reasons, it is the latter that we wanted to remember. Indeed, the APT-X codec offers a sampling rate of 44.1 kHz on 16 Bits, which is the same quality as the Audio CD. This is particularly useful when you have a nice collection of FLACs or WAVs stored on a computer, smartphone, or any other device with a Bluetooth module.
Also, there are wireless DACs, which allow you to stream your music to the living room audio system. They work in the same way as a conventional DAC: a digital stream is transmitted to the converter, which transforms it into an analog signal which can be used by your amplifier.
These systems consist of a transmitter and a receiver. They thus use a Point-To-Point scheme and are compatible with any device, even if it is not Wi-Fi or Bluetooth. The sampling rates exceed those of the APT-X, reaching 48 kHz on 16 Bits and even 96 kHz on 24 Bits.
More expensive solution – receivers and network players
More expensive than a wireless dongle or an entry-level DAC converter. However, the receivers or network player has additional functionalities. Most of the time it also benefits from a design similar to Hi-Fi electronics. High-end conversion circuits, substantial power supply, audiophile components, and a rigid chassis are all characteristics formerly reserved for our good old amps.
In addition to playing audio files stored on a computer, the receiver allows access to thousands of web radio stations around the world. Indispensable, the USB port allows you to connect a mobile device or a USB key containing digital audio files.
Music platforms can support most of the current formats, especially FLAC and WAV in 24Bits / 96kHz (or even 192kHz) which are extremely popular with audiophiles. This compatibility with HD codecs even extends to network playback (DLNA), which means that you won’t even have to transfer your music to a key to enjoy it. Finally, these musical platforms are often compatible with the AirPlay protocol and have a rich connection combining analog and digital sockets.