Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Sonos, Spotify, etc

One thing with moving homes is that you always end up re-thinking the "media hub". With media hub I mean the whole cabling between the television, music systems, DVD, consoles, and computer.

In my first studio, everything was done haphazardly. And as it was a mess, I didn't really care about cables sticking out everywhere. I had my television, a VCR player connected to the telly with a SCART cable, the TV cable going to the VCR first. I took an old amp from my aunt and hooked up an LP player, bought a CD player and hooked it up to that amp too. Had a couple of old speakers connected to the amp. Later on I bought a Harman Kardon tuner/receiver, hooked everything up to that and later on bought a DVD player.

Then I moved to a bigger place. I found a TV table (one where you put the TV on top with everything else underneath it) in my old kitchen (go figure) so stacked my tuner/receiver, DVD player, CD player and VCR on top of it with cables running behind it. On some shelves next to it I had the LP player hooked to the old amp and then hooked to the receiver. Later on I got a PS2 and put it on the shelves and hooked it up to the TV and receiver. I bought a home cinema speaker set, so I had 6 additional speakers to hook up. It was quite alright and not as messy as before.

After that it was moving in with my girlfriend (now the missus). She had a TV unit, so we bought a new flat screen TV and put that on it. In the unit came my CD player, the DVD player and the receiver. I chucked out the two old speakers. On the shelves next to the TV unit came the old amp, the LP player and the PS2. I ditched the VCR as it was useless already at that point. Later on we got cable TV so I made place for the cable TV box in the TV unit. And one birthday my in-laws gave my a Nintendo Wii, so that fitted in nice on the shelves.

So when we bought the new place I thought about the whole media hub. I made sure the TV jack is next to the phone jack and with lots of electricity plugs. As the old TV unit was old, we bought a new sleek one. Problem is that the CD player is too bulky for that - so that is off to the cellar. The LP players (I have two for some reason) and the old amp are also in the cellar. So now I just have the receiver, a DVD player (which I will replace with a Blu-Ray one soon), and the cable TV box, with my router nested in there as well. I just need to connect both consoles but that is an easy job.

But now the problem is playing music. No CD player is connected to the receiver so I can't play any of my 700+ CDs. So for the moment I have my iPod connected but I found a solution. I am going to get the Sonos, so that I can stream the music I have. I will also get a Buffalo Linkstation Mini as a network-attached storage device so that I don't have to have my Mac switched on all the time to play music. And then I hope Spotify will be available for Sonos.

Less cables, more music. And next time I move it will start all over again. Hopefully by that time everything will be wireless.