I’m thinking of attempting to install the NAA daemon on my Aries.
The first thing to note about such a plan is that it will probably void all warranties and guarantees from Auralic. I accept that. If I go ahead and try anything then I will be taking full responsibility for any and all loss or damage resulting from my fiddling about under the hood of the Aries. That extends not only to Auralic but also to Roon Labs, Signalyst, Jussi or anyone who makes any suggestions or recommendations in this thread. I take ultimate responsibility for anything I do to my Aries.
In accordance with GPL requirements Auralic maintains a public depository of the Linux Kernel it uses here. It appears that the Aries uses a branch of version 3.10.53 of the kernel, meaning that NAA versions requiring a later kernel are likely to be incompatible.
@jussi_laako , what version of the NAA daemon would be compatible with kernel 3.10.53 ? I can see a Jessie armel.deb (but no armhf.deb) dated 1 May 2015. Is that likely to be compatible ? Do you see any impediment in principle to running an NAA on the Aries ?
I’m using a CuBox-i now as an NAA and it’s working well. But the Aries is sitting next to it doing nothing and is likely to be a better machine for the job.
The first hurdle, predictably, is logging in by SSH. So far I haven’t been able to do so and I wouldn’t expect Auralic to be keen on releasing root login details. That might be the end of my experimentation, but I plan to look at the firmware updates to see if there is a door in that way.
If I do login, the first thing I would want to do is make a backup by taking an image of the existing state of the internal storage in the Aries. If I can’t do that in a way that would give me confidence I could restore everything, then I might also decide not to proceed.
I would then have to consider whether there is enough system room to run an NAA daemon. I have seen references to the Auralic Lightning Linux OS as “a 4MB custom Linux operating system”. That sounds like something very highly optimised that it might be imprudent to mess with.
At the moment my inclination is to do nothing (story of my life !), but I am interested in finding out more and figuring out if there is some real impediment to doing it.
Just using the CuBox-i at the moment. It’s hooked up to the USB input of my DAC (Vega) and I listen mainly to Redbook upsampled in HQP to DSD 128. The Aries is hooked up to the AES input, but I don’t listen to it. If everything went well and I could install an NAA into the Aries (which is really just a small computer device) then I’d hook the Aries up to the USB input and listen only through it. I think it might sound better than the CuBox-i.
Auralic seem to believe that if they made the Aries into an NAA and I used Roon/HQP as an input instead of Lightning DS that they are somehow losing out. I can’t see that at all.
To update this thread, I wasn’t able to login to the Aries trying a dictionary of common logins and passwords; a fairly predictable sort of failure at the first hurdle.
On a brighter note though I was in touch with Mr Wang at Auralic recently and asked again about NAA support. He said he had connected with Jussi and was evaluating the possibility of adding such support at the right moment.
A very welcome development for all HQP and Aries users. Dropping a flag for @miguelito, who is one such user.
The microRendu over NAA works great. I can upsample in HQPlayer and send to it. Sounds amazing.
As for DSD512, it is in principle supported but those DSD rates are not supported over DoP so it depends on the DAC you connect to the mR.
I’ve decommissioned my Aries - back in it’s box - I don’t have the time to sell it, keep thinking maybe I’ll use it for something else. The only use I had for it was as an Airport speaker but I have reverted to an Airport Express over toslink to my DAC for that.
My DAC (Lampizator, with Amanero USB board) supports DSD512 natively.
But to my knowlegde there are only Windows Drivers that support DSD512 natively via Amanero USB board and the MicroRendu is Linux based, right?