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Internet radio (hardware)?
Old 11-14-2016, 11:04 AM   #1
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Internet radio (hardware)?

We've been streaming internet radio through our Amazon Echo and PC but we are beginning to think that a dedicated piece of hardware would be better for the kitchen/living area. Searching ER.org site, I haven't found a recent discussion of internet radio hardware. I have one friend who uses an internet radio listens but he listens to exactly ONE station on it and has no clue how to describe setup and usage.

We have found that many of the major internet streaming services (Pandora, iHeart Radio, Spotify, Siriusetc.) have very shallow playlists in our areas of interest. We have found CalmRadio which has a very rich selection of classical music, but is awkward to access through the Echo. Also, DW would like to have an easy way to access the tens of thousands of tracks that are currently stored on my PC and that I listen to through iTunes.

In short, the question is:

Do any of you have any recommendations for a stand alone internet radio that will be easy to operate and will easily access the tracks that we have on our PC?
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Old 11-14-2016, 01:03 PM   #2
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Sonos. Not cheap but sounds pretty good.
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Old 11-14-2016, 01:12 PM   #3
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I just use a tablet, phone or netbook (with an external amp/speakers). Then you get the full interface for any source you want. -ERD50
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Old 11-14-2016, 01:36 PM   #4
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Sounds like a good case for an iPad with a nearby bluetooth speaker.
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Internet radio (hardware)?
Old 11-14-2016, 06:15 PM   #5
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Internet radio (hardware)?

I have a couple airplay speakers that I use. If you have apple gadgets I would consider one of those. I am pretty happy with mine
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Old 11-14-2016, 06:19 PM   #6
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I use my phone and a blue-tooth speaker. Generally listen to Google play, with ads, for free. The ads are a lot less than regular radio. IHeartRadio is also an option.

Of course, mp3 files, from the PirateBay can be mixed in too.
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Old 11-14-2016, 07:19 PM   #7
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We bought a Logitech Sqeezebox a few years back and use it in the kitchen.
I think it has since been discontinued, but I see a similar model by Grace on Amazon.
There are only 6 presets on the face of the radio, and the sound is decent for our purposes.
Our model did not come with a remote control, and finding channels is a bit of a fiddly process.
It's a decent radio, I think I paid around $150 for it.
I agree with others here that a cheaper option could be rigged with aging computer devices you might have at home.
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Old 11-14-2016, 09:08 PM   #8
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Do you have an existing stereo system in your living room? Probably not the cheapest way to get what you want but may offer the best high fidelity is a new receiver and some decent speakers. Many new stereo receivers have internet radio built in, you can also connect a USB stick to the receiver that has all the songs copied from your PC, or you can play songs directly from your PC thru the receiver using apps like Windows Media Player. Most newer receivers also have android/iphone apps that allow you to control the receiver through the app, like a remote control.
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Old 11-14-2016, 10:36 PM   #9
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You might look for an old school method that works well for me. Buy an Internet radio known as a Logitech Squeeze Box. Great sound quality. Stream stations and I think you can link to your music Library. Read up on them and you can find them on eBay. Good luck with your solution and most of all, have fun doing it!
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Old 11-15-2016, 06:31 AM   #10
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Logitech and Grace both make very good internet tuners. I have a Grace unit on my home stereo.
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Old 11-15-2016, 08:50 AM   #11
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I have an old school stereo system with a receiver that does not have internet or wifi capabilities.

I bought this device PR5 Receiver - Phorus. It plugs into my receiver and gives it wifi capabilities. I use my laptop to stream audio from a variety of sources (Google Play, Tunein radio, etc.) and send it out through my stereo speakers via this device. There are also Android and iOs apps that can control the device. I have found that the Android app is a real battery drain, so I use my laptop which is almost always plugged in. I am very happy with this setup. Lots of free content and the quality is good.

I paid about $180 on Amazon.

I chose this over a Bluetooth solution, based on concerns about the sound quality. But you can find Bluetooth device that is much cheaper.

YMMV.
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Old 11-15-2016, 09:24 AM   #12
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I just use my computer with a favorites folder called "internet radio" that holds links to some of my favorite streamed sites.

Have been temped to buy a physical internet radio though, but not tempted enough.
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Old 11-15-2016, 09:48 AM   #13
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Thanks, everyone for your suggestions. To recap, the current situation is, basically, that DW wants to have a music source in the kitchen that has a small footprint and provides multiple sources of music, including the approximately 1000 CDs that I transferred to iTunes ten years ago. The small footprint limitation rules out the use of a traditional stereo/hifi. As I mentioned before, the Amazon Echo, although the sound quality has been good enough, is just a bit quirky and will not access our iTunes library - so it has been less than satisfactory.

So, based on the comments you have provided, I am moving forward on a possible two step solution. Step 1, we will use my little android tablet to power some computer speakers to more fully test out some of the streaming music sources, especially CalmRadio, and to access our iTunes. Step 2, if we feel that Step 1 was successful EXCEPT that it would be better addressed with a single piece of hardware, then I will order a stand-alone internet radio receiver. I have my eye on a Grace Mondo on Amazon.

Thanks again!
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Old 11-15-2016, 09:55 AM   #14
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I have a Sangeon DDR-63 (DDR-63 : WiFi Internet Radio / FM-RBDS / Aux-in / CD / USB / SD All-in-One<br>Tabletop Wooden Cabinet Musical System Compatible with iPod). Primarily it lets me switch from, for instance, WWOZ (New Otleans) and KUVO (Denver) easily. With this device you go online to select the stations you want to add to your Favorites and the programming is taken care of. It is a little expensive (and I am not sure I would do it again) but it does have several useful modes other than Internet Radio and I am very happy with it.

https://www.amazon.com/Sangean-DDR-6.../dp/B0033WSDYC

FWIW, I have been unable to find any other product that is a stand-alone Internet Radio... and I have been looking for several years.
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Old 11-15-2016, 01:57 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jjquantz View Post
Step 1, we will use my little android tablet to power some computer speakers to more fully test out some of the streaming music sources, especially CalmRadio, and to access our iTunes. Step 2, if we feel that Step 1 was successful EXCEPT that it would be better addressed with a single piece of hardware, then I will order a stand-alone internet radio receiver. I have my eye on a Grace Mondo on Amazon.
Late to this interesting thread but perhaps there is a amplified docking station with a small footprint for the android tablet (similar to ipad) that may work out. Some (like the Bose) sound rather nice. You should be able to find one on the used circuit pretty inexpensively. Just a thought.

_B
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