Melco debuts new N10/2 flagship music library

posted on Wednesday, 2nd February 2022 by Steve May

Streaming  Hi-fi  High Res Audio 

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Digital library specialist Melco has unveiled a new range-topping digital music library, the N10/2. The two-box flagship is an upgrade of its best-seller, and comes in two storage type variants: an HDD version (the N10/2-H50, which retails for £6,999) and an SSD version (the N10/2-S38, £8,999).

The HDD version is a direct replacement for the original N10, while the SSD version replaces the previous SSD flagship, the N1Z/2EX.

The new libraries centre around newly selected HDD and SSD drives: 5 TB in the N10/2-H50 and 3.84 TB in the N10/2-S38; the dedicated drives are hand-picked for optimum audio performance.

The N10/2 also benefits from a new high-performance PCB, first seen in the limited-edition N10 45th Anniversary Limited Edition.

The N10/2 two-box unit features a half-width (215mm) chassis, which enables Melco’s engineers to separate signal-processing electronics from the power supply.

The ‘top unit contains the processing electronics and data connectivity, and the power unit contains a high-performance, low-noise linear power supply with toroidal transformer. The rear panel offers twin Ethernet ports, dubbed LAN and PLAYER, the latter being a dedicated port designed to connect directly to network streamers without the need for an intervening data switch, ensuring timing accuracy is maintained.

The head unit uses the same extreme-low-noise, high-precision digital music dataflow as the existing Melco series and has been designed from the ground-up as an audio-specific device - Melco makes a point of avoiding standard IT components or PC parts.

Twin USB 2.0 ports are also available, along with a further front-panel USB port, including a dedicated USB DAC output, ready for connection to USB DACs, USB DAC-equipped amplifiers or active speakers.

The second USB port enables USB devices to connect and operate, including importing or playing music from memory devices, HDD/SSD drives and CD rippers. There’s also the option os capacity expansion with Melco’s E100 (or other brand) storage drive; and easy backup to HDD/SSD drives.

Complementing Melco’s software architecture, the N10/2 has Melco’s Intelligent Music Library suite, comprising MinimServer and SongKong software. The device is also Roon Ready, DSD compatible and offers app control via DLNA/UPnP in USB DAC mode with support for TIDAL, Qobuz and vTuner streaming with the Melco Music HD app.

Qobuz Downloader and HighResAudio.com also enable direct, error-free high-res downloads without the need for a computer.

The N10/2 can also be used as a self-contained local hi-res digital music player when connected via a USB DAC; data rates of up to 32 bit/384 kHz and Octo DSD are supported, along with gapless and Melco markerless DSD.

Control comes via the Melco Music HD app, from the front panel, or from approved third-party RF remote handsets and for network playback, UPnP control point apps.

Steve May

Inside CI Editor Steve May is a freelance technology specialist who also writes for T3TechRadarHome Cinema Choice, Trusted Reviews and The Luxe Review.

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