Media streamers are all too often the jack of all trades yet the masters of none. Thankfully, no such blight tarnishes the Logitech Squeezebox Duet's shiny black carapace. The first product to come from the Slim Devices team since its purchase by Logitech in 2007, the Duet has been developed to do one thing: stream music content …
And amazingly (after how many generations?) it _still_ doesn't do Real Audio decoding in the Squeezebox™ Receiver. (You some need some extra dodgy plugin for the SqueezeCenter™ software running on a PC.)
So no BBC Radio streaming without having a server running. Crazy. Every 50 quid Reciva-powered internet radio can do native-Real Audio streaming. Why not the Squeezebox™? (At 370 quid, FFS!)
Not quite true
While the Receiver can't decode Real Audio, that doesn't stop you from listening to BBC Radio on it without having a server running. Thankfully most (if not all ?) BBC radio channels now have non-Real streams available that you can receive on Squeezeboxes without having your server turned on.
They are available under "Internet Radio->Staff Picks->By Webcaster->BBC" when connected to SqueezeNetwork.
The Squeezebox used to support streaming from Pandora; glad I didn't get one because of course Pandora is no more in the UK. But I wonder whether it will play last.fm streams. (Apologies if this is answered in the article, but... four flaming pages?)
Upnp AV support?
Is it possible to use a Upnp AV server, rather than SqueezeCenter (SlimServer)? I use a little network attached drive running twonkyvision upnp av server, so would rather not have to have my PC running as well..
Also, re: Ralph and Real audio support - have to agree it is crazy that the Squeezeboxes and the Roku soundbridges still don't support Real audio. Saying that, I'm not a big fan of the Reciva interface (or at least any of the Reciva based devices I've used), I find it very hard to use...
just audio for £370?
buy a ps3 (£299) and then you can stream not only audio, but video wirelessly. plus you can play bluray, surf the net, talk to your mates, and play Metal gear solid. and it looks a lot cooler than this thing
BBC doesn't just broadcast real audio
Actually, most (all?) national BBC stations are also available as WMA streams, although the URL's are not easy to track down. Alternative Roku media streamer maintains all the links through radioroku, and I routinely listen to BBC WMA radio streams. I guess, if you track down the URLs the squeezebox can listen to them too.
Ok, it's a nice overall thingy if you're after the whole "real remote" thing. AirPort Express + Salling Clicker on your existing WiFi device = MUCH cheaper, no DRM limitations, lots of other uses, you can Applescript it to actually switch AirPort outputs with a bit of tinkering, despite iTunes not being able to script the darn output chooser...
Sounds from the description like Logitech borrowed a few tricks from its Harmony remote controls division. Amazingly, it almost sounds like a company made two acquisitions and discovered real, actual synergy.
Now for the win, I'd really like to have a squeezebox remote completely merged with my Harmony remote. One remote to rule them all...
Yes, they now support last.fm streaming.
Yes, they now support last.fm streaming.
@ Mike Brown
Well done for completely missing the point of this product Mike. Yes, you *could* use your PS3 to play music, in the same way you *could* crack a nut with a sledghammer. However, neither is designed for the purpose, and neither does a particularly good job of it.
I'm guessing your also the kind of guy who buys a micro hi-fi, because you "can't see the point" of wasting all that money on high-end hi-fi equipment...plus you get a Bass-boost button....ooooh!
and if you've got a Squeezebox 3 or two....
...then you can just buy the controller and it'll work with them too.
But it's a lot of money just for the controller.
I badly want one, but I can't actually justify two hundred notes for something that does what I already have (ie two Squeezeboxen)
This isn't a streaming server. The Duet and the SB3 before it, are devices you stream to and hook up to your Hi-Fi, kitchen-radio, or whatever-the-hell.
The PS3 would be effectively the same as a PC server you'd use to stream your media and have in one room with the streaming device in another room. Except you probably couldn't use a PS3 on its own to host a terrabyte of music stored in Flac format, streaming losslessly to devices such as this which natively decode Flac using Burr-Brown DACs to play high quality audio into your amp ;).
Though in theory the PS3 can host the slimserver (aka SqueezeCentre now) that is all that's required to do the streaming. But then a cheap low powered PC with a terrabyte of storage is all you need. Maybe £150 and low power, vs the 300W+ beast of a PS3 with noisy fans which is clearly OTT just to play some music, and more so for radio.
Note that the server side (slimserver) is open source and free. Not only that though, the Duet and SB3 can use online stream sources without the need for a server in your house, including their own net radio aggregator, SqueezeNetwork. A PS3 would be seriously OTT just to play net radio!
Oh, and the PS3 doesn't come with a LCD remote that shows your current playing tracks, album art etc, so you don't have to use a TV to browse the tunes does it? ;) Though I suppose you could add a PSP to the pot, but that plus the PS3 is a hell of a lot more expensive than this.
As for better looking, yes the Duet isn't that sexy, but the SB3 is (much better looking than a PS3) and you can get the Duet's remote for it! :-)
Sonos is better..
..and it doesn't need the slim-server software installing..
Paris cos I bet she has a Sonos
NIce to see a good product NOT ruined by new owners
I have a 2nd gen SqueezeBox that has given good service for many years and continues to do so.
Probably the biggest problem that these devices suffer from is that, as the review says, they "just work". And they KEEP ON working. So whilst the new remote looks OMG drop-dead sexy, I simply have no reason to upgrade my 5 year old device.
I've been expounding the virtues of SlimDevices for years - it's wonderful to see that I can continue to do so under the ownership of Logitech.
And for those suggesting a PS3 as an equivalently capable product/device/solution....
I have a PS3... I *tried* setting it up as a client for the DLNA server built into MediaPlayer 11. It didn't work. It seemingly doesn't work if you have more than a handful of files in your library. It took me hours of frustration to figure this out and give up trying to make something work that is fundamentally broken.
But even if it DID work, needing to turn on the TV to play music is just a teensy bit dumb, donchyathink?
(for sure, if you're using a PC to host your library, then it too needs to be on for SlimServer to be running, but the PC I use it a monitorless device that sits in a cupboard in my office, communicating seemlessly, silently and wirelessly with the rest of my home LAN)
Now, was the problem the PS# or was it MediaPlayer? I dunno.
I tried to find some alternative DLNA servers - there are quite a few. Not ONE of them was as plug-and-play "It just works" simple as SlimServer to set up, and I gave up.
Me. The technical/computer/gadget "Go To" Guy of our household, family and indeed neighbourhood. Gave up.
Sometimes grappling with technology can be fun. But when I just want to listen to my music, it needs to "just work", as easily at least as just dropping a disc into a player.
SlimDevices got that. Logitech still get it.
Way to go SqueezeBox!
Paris, because I would. And really, does anyone else EVER need any other reason?
Great bit of kit
I have just got one of this set up and am very pleased with it, very easy to set up once you get the full set of instructions. I was using twonky before but the Philips SLA5520s were becoming difficuilt to turn on for some reason, and having the TV on to use the PS3 seemed a bit "over the top". The remote is easy to use, the screen is great and being able have the remote at hand where ever you are around the house is very usefull.
Twonky is still very good at displaying my digital pictures and videos through the PS3 but the Duet is the way to go with music.