Redcloud, our free DAC upgrade, launches today at noon for DirectStream (DSJ shortly after). Details available here at 12 noon. Included in the launch is an all-new Bridge II build with a number of new features and services, one of which is called Spotify Connect. I want to tell you a little story about this and why we included it for our customers. But, first, I find it necessary to clear up something I wrote in yesterday's post. Our trade-up policy for US customers is unique but perhaps a bit confusing. I had mentioned we will buy back any legit piece if audio equipment for its full original retail value. And that is true but it does come with a limit: 30% of the new order. Let's imagine you want to buy a $1,000 PS product. We will buy back your trade-in—speakers, amps, preamps, CD players, cables, turntables, whatever—for its original retail value up to $300 (30% of the new product's price). For this smallish amount of money, it's a good plan to rummage through the closet and find something for around that value. But here's where it gets interesting. You can apply a single trade in piece (or many) towards the purchase of multiple PS products on one order (thus maximizing the total new price). This allows you to get full retail of more expensive trades if the numbers line up. It's a cool plan and I am sorry if I made it confusing. Call us if it's still unclear. A few months ago I was speaking to the San Francisco Audio Society at a lovely home and overheard a conversation during a break. The person speaking shuffled his feet and lowered his eyes as if embarrassed by his words. "To tell the truth most of my listening is casual and I love Spotify". That was an aha! moment for me. Most of us are focused listeners at times but truth be told, much of our listening is more casual than critical. And this is where the beauty of a streaming service like Spotify comes in. Spotify isn't Tidal. Understanding the difference is helpful. Tidal is a premium streaming service with CD quality (and beyond). They have a decent sized library that suits most needs and if you want to critically listen, theirs is a good service (not as good as the actual disc itself, but close). Spotify, on the other hand, isn't CD quality. If you get the premium service you get really good sounding music that's more than adequate for anything but critical listening. But here's the thing. Spotify's library and interface blows Tidal out of the water—and not just by a little bit. Their selections, curation, and ease of use are unparalleled in my opinion. For half the price of Tidal ($10 a month), you can find playlists from others, build your own, and access millions and millions of titles. It's a music lover's paradise. And here's something else. Using our new Spotify Connect feature on Bridge II (available free with today's upgrade), all you need to access this wealth of music is a mobile phone, tablet, or webpage. Load the Spotify app on your phone, then select the PS Audio Bridge from the available devices to play to, and you're good to go. Your phone or tablet aren't involved in the actual streaming. Instead, your handheld device simply acts as a controller, connecting Spotify's server directly with the PS DAC. To update your Bridge II to the latest and enjoy Spotify Connect, VTuner, Tidal, Qobuz, MQA, and ROON, go here and follow the instructions. Have fun. For free.
- Choosing a selection results in a full page refresh.
- Opens in a new window.