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Octavio Stream review, the streaming box that brings vintage audio systems back to life

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If you are one of the music lovers who regretfully put away their stereo because they couldn’t use it streaming actuality, what follows should cheer you up. Futura discovered and tested Octavio Stream, a connected box wireless that you will simply connect to one of the inputs of your audio system and thanks to which you can play music through any streaming service.

The secret weapon of this device is that it supports lossless Hi-Res quality playback (the most powerful format available for streaming) up to 24bit / 192kHz. For 199 euros, the Octavio Stream is aimed at people who want to modernize their slightly old sound system or audiophiles who are looking for a simple solution for streaming from Amazon Music, Apple Music, Deezer Premium, Qobuz and tide to their Hi-Fi installation without losing sound quality.

Before getting to the heart of the matter, a few words about Octavio. This young French company was founded by two musicology students. The design of the streaming box was born as part of their studies before leading to the creation of a to boot. The electronics come from Asia, but the manufacturing of the case, the packaging and the assembly of the device are carried out in France in Tourcoing and the surrounding area. Consequently, Octavio Stream isn’t just designed for lovers his quality but gate also the values ​​of this young company which has preferred to favor French and local manufacturing.

An all-purpose design

The Octavio Stream comes in the form of a rectangular-shaped case with rounded corners and compact dimensions (118 x 64 x 21 mm). It is done inside plastic injection molded with a fairly versatile black and white two-tone finish.

On the back of the Octavio Stream case, a USB-C port for power, audio output and an on / off button. It is compatible with Wi-Fi 802.11 b / g / n (2.4GHz and 5GHz) and Bluetooth 5.0. The device was delivered to us with a cable analog RCA type but you can opt for a 3.5mm jack cable or cable when ordering. digital mini toslink / toslink depending on the equipment you want to connect the player to.

Quality-oriented electronics

Under the hood there is a processor ARM Cortex-A53 ea DAC (digital to analog converter) PCM5102 which can go up to the format Direct digital stream (DSD) used by the Super Audio CD. Octavio says he spent a lot of time optimizing the integration of this component. “ It has a good compromise between the faithful side (spatialization) and a warm and musical rendering. “, The designers explained to us.

The box supports codec audio codec, FLAC, OGG, ALAC, WMA, APE and MP3. It is also compatible with AirPlay 2 and can support playback without spaces (without space between the pieces) through Qobuz. The Wi-Fi connection doesn’t dictate any compression noise that can affect audio quality. Result, the diffusion from music it is lossless from the source. If the song is played on Qobuz at 24bit 192kHz, Octavio Stream will restore this quality without affecting it.

Rediscover the quality of a real Hi-Fi system

For this test, we connected the Octavio Stream box to an amplifier Atoll IN80 SE and a pair of Jean-Marie Reynaud Opus loudspeakers that had been inactive for several years at garage, supplanted by a multiroom system. We tested the device using the standard version of Spotify and the French service Qobuz which offers music in CD quality (16 bit / 44.1 kHz) and Hi-Res (24 bit / 96 kHz).

Between connecting the box and its software configuration through a smartphone Pixel 6 Proit took less than five minutes to get started listening to music. We started with some Spotify tracks that automatically detected Octavio Steam. Everything works as expected and our Hi-Fi installation is back in service in the blink of an eye.eye while benefiting from the flexibility of streaming.

But it was Qobuz that really interested us for the promise of lossless Hi-Res listening. And there, disappointment to find that the auto connect feature is not available in theapplication. A defect that is not due to Octavio but to Qobuz. We asked the French streaming service about it, which assured us that this feature was at the top of its priorities, without giving us a precise timetable for its introduction.

To use Qobuz we therefore went through the Octavio Virtuose application, which can be associated with the main existing streaming music services: Deezer, Spotify, Tidal, Amazon Music and Apple Music. The interface is clear, rather well designed, and strives to reproduce the specifics of each platform. But we don’t find all its benchmarks and the experience with Qobuz has left us somewhat unsatisfied, particularly in terms of search engine and recommendations.

On the other hand, the listening quality is totally up there with, for some titles, 24-bit 192kHz Hi-Res sound. We have happily rediscovered all the musicality of our Opus speakers, with a sound whose size and refinement are unmatched in terms ofuniverse of the speakers connected modern. loyalty e transparency of the Octavio Stream are exemplary.

Futura’s opinion

Octavio Steam fulfills its mission and delivers on its promise to bring classic audio systems back to life. It is a great option for those with a Hi-Fi system that they no longer use or want to modernize and a good way to combat unwarranted obsolescence.

We love

  • Quick and easy installation
  • Sober and discreet design
  • Ability to stream music with high audio quality without data loss
  • Ideal for audiophiles who want to enjoy streaming without giving up their gear

We love less

  • Perfectible level of finish

Futura note

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