This new forum came along at the right time.
For about three years now I have been using an iPod Classic (120GB), and the Wadia iTransport (170-171), as my digital source with all files as Apple Lossless. I have tweaked it by upgrading the power supply, and using an MIT Magnum digital cable. However, as good as it sounds, the iPod has a few weaknesses. First, it maxes out at 160GB, it is not easily controlled with a remote, and it only supports CD, or lower, file quality.
On the other hand, a computer is to much of a pain to setup and use as a music server. Plus the computer is a hodge-podge of random parts doing nothing for the music, cheap power supply, and it has noisy fans, along with spinning hard drives creating all types of mechanical and vibration noise, which does affect the sound.
So Bryston developed the BDP-1 just to play any and all types of digital files. It has no moving parts, a fan less mother board, and Bryston designed power supplies. Since my iPod is down to 8GB free space, I took the plunge and ordered the Bryston. After learning my lesson in the past, this time I ordered a Shunyata Cobra Ztron power cable, a Shunyata Python Ztron XLR digital cable, and waited for the cables to arrive before hooking up the Bryston. This was last Friday.
Man, this thing is great. It is amazing how much more detail is in a file. I can not believe my ears. While the iPod/Wadia sounded great, this just adds so much more to the music. It seems every song is being heard for the first time, as notes, etc. are being heard for the first time.
I should mention I am also using the Bryston BDA-1 DAC, which complements the appearance.
This thing works by attaching a USB drive to one of 4 ports. I purchased a Toshiba 500GB drive, and created three top level directories; classical, rock, and jazz. I then copied my iTune music into the appropriate folder, and I am in business. I downloaded a free app, mpod, and can control the Bryston from my recliner with my iPad3. I just go to the classical directory and tell mpod to play all files in the directory in random shuffle. Of course, you can create play lists, or play individual CDs, or a single song if you want.
Next on the agenda is going to HD tracks and getting some high-res files. That will be great.
I used to think the iPod/Wadia was the best musical device I ever bought because it reconnected me with music. I have bought hundreds of CDs to fill up the iPod. However, the Bryston has all the benefits of the iPod, and much, much more.
If you are on the fence about going digital then run, don't walk, and buy one of these. It is that good.