Spotify. To hear snobs tell it, the Swedish streaming service has no place in the hi-fi world. According to this outmoded idealism, the high-end audio is a party where Spotify’s lossy (Ogg Vorbis) encoding doesn’t get you past the velvet rope.
Thankfully, an increasing number of high-end audio manufacturers are showing us that they firmly disagree.
We’ve already seen the likes of AURALiC, KEF, PS Audio and Sonore / Small Green Computer add Spotify Connect support to their hardware over the past few years.
In 2017/18, AURALiC’s G1 and G2 Aries, the Wyred 4 Sound music server/streamer, the Naim Uniti Atom, the Hegel H590 and Devialet Expert Pro all became members of the Spotify Connect club.
And the beat goes on.
This month, high-end server/streamer manufacturer Innuos joins the fold, their InnuOS 1.4.0 operating system update adding support for Spotify Connect. Setup requires we first find our Spotify ‘username’ and set a device password here before plugging them both into InnuOS’s Spotify settings panel. (Note: Roon integration must be disabled before it will appear).
Once logged in, we fire up any Spotify app to find the Innuos server under “Available Devices”. Hit play and we’re off to the races. Giddy up.
For those who value Spotify’s UI – and prefer not to be forced into the audio manufacturer’s (almost always) inferior app – Spotify Connect remains crucial. We can call on all suitably equipped high-end hi-fi hardware to play catch on the incoming stream whilst remaining in Spotify’s iOS/Android/Windows/MacOs app.
Moreover, not all (modern) music can be found in Qobuz’s or Tidal’s lossless libraries. In Germany, Steven Rutter & John Shima’s Step Into The Light EP is MIA on Qobuz and Autechre’s Amber can’t be found on Tidal. And yet both releases are readily available on Spotify.
Until library holes like these are filled, Spotify will remain the Music-First Audiophile’s streaming service of choice.
By adding Spotify Connect support, high-end manufacturers like Innuos reaffirm the idea that the hi-fi world is open to everyone; that it doesn’t discriminate along bitrate lines. More power to them.
Further information: Innuos