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Pioneer N-50: the gateway to streaming separates

Pioneer N-50 network audio player


Over the last few years, the way most of us purchase and listen to music has changed considerably. For many of us these days, it's become an essential requirement to stream music over the internet or play songs stored on phones or computers.

More and more all-in-one systems, iPod docks and AV receivers feature streaming capabilities but options are still slim for stand-alone streamers. Cyrus and Sonos have products that cater for the high-end and multi-room markets respectively but Pioneer has produced a fantastic, affordable option for turning a conventional separates system into a streaming one: the Pioneer N-50 network audio player.

The N-50's brushed aluminium fascia accentuate's the unit's solid build quality and is home to a colour screen on which album artwork, file format, bitrate, etc. are displayed. The streamer is available in black or silver.

The fascia's USB socket is compatible with iPods, iPhones and iPads. The rear USB socket provides a direct connection to a PC, and the LAN socket links the player to the internet (wireless connectivity is optional). Digital (optical and co-axial) inputs can also be found round the rear as can digital, optical and analogue outputs.

AirPlay is incorporated for streaming music from iOS devices and computers with iTunes installed. Bluetooth capability can be added via the optional dongle.

As one would expect, a remote control is supplied but a controller App is available for iOS and Android.

Priced under £500, it's no wonder the Pioneer N-50 network audio player is EISA's Best Streaming Product and What Hi-Fi's best streamer up to £600. This stream dream is available at Hi-Fi Stereo.

Date of article:19/10/2012

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