Installing an Aurender Music Server in an audio system and connecting it to a local area network is a relatively simple process, though there are some things to consider before getting started.
In addition to the Aurender Music Server, the following items are required:
1. Apple iPad 2 or later
The award winning Aurender Conductor App for the iPad allows the user to browse and navigate locally stored files on the internal storage, external media from attached USB or NAS devices, or streaming content from services like Tidal and Qobuz.
The iPad Air2 or iPad Pro are recommended for their fast processing speed and 801.11ac wireless connection.
2. LAN (local area network) Equipment
In order for the Conductor App to communicate with the Aurender, a WiFi Access Point (WAP), network switch, and local area network router are required. For most end users, these three components will all be housed in a typical, off-the-shelf "wireless router" as a single component, and are also often provided by the user's ISP (internet service provider). In general, all that is required is a hardwired connection from the Aurender to a switch port on the wireless router, a WiFi connection from the iPad to the wireless router, and within moments the Conductor App is installed, the Aurender is on, and music is being enjoyed.
However, each environment is unique, so some best practices for home networking are discussed in section 2-2c.
3. Appropriate Cabling
CAT5/CAT5E/CAT6 Ethernet cabling is required for the Aurender's connection to the LAN, and appropriate audio interconnect cabling for the desired connection to the audio system (USB, SPDIF Digital, or Analog*) is also needed.
Step 1 - Connect Audio Cables
First, the appropriate audio cable(s) should be connected to the audio system. Some general guidelines are as follows:
If using a USB connection to a DAC or USB convertor, the USB cable should be as short as possible, and should also carry a USB 2.0 certification.
Digital Coaxial RCA or BNC cables should be properly terminated with a 75-ohm impedance.
Digital AES/EBU cables should be properly terminated with a 110-ohm impedance.
Optical (Toslink) cables should be as short as possible for the application, and it is also important to ensure no kinks or bends are present in the cable.
Analog RCA cables should ideally be 1M or less.
Analog XLR cables should be used when lengths beyond 1M are required, or when the equipment supports this connection type.
Ensure the cables are connected tightly without putting strain on the connectors. Many cables can be quite stiff and heavy, so care should be taken to avoid damage to sensitive pins and connection points on the Aurender, the cables, and other equipment. In general, it is best to keep audio cabling separated from AC power cables as much as possible.
Simultaneous Connections All outputs on Aurender music servers are active at the same time, so it is possible to make a few different connections for comparison purposes or if use with two different configurations is desired. For example, an N10 may be connected to a high performance DAC with an AES/EBU connection for listening through an audio system driving loudspeakers, while at the same time the USB connection may be connected to a separate USB DAC/headphone amp for headphone listening. Please note that while simultaneous connections are possible, certain equipment can occasionally exhibit odd behavior when connected to the same component as another. Consult your equipment manufacturer for more information.
Step 2 - Connect LAN (Ethernet) Cable
A standard CAT5/CAT5E/CAT6, RJ45-terminated patch cable should be used for connecting the Aurender to a direct switch port on the local area network. If a direct port connection is not available and a punch-down style RJ45 wall jack connector is being used for connection to the LAN, it is recommended to check the wall jack to ensure it is properly terminated using an ethernet cable tester. An improperly terminated or poorly constructed connection to the LAN can result in increased latency and additional problems on the network.
For users unable to directly hardwire the Aurender to the local area network, Ethernet-over-mains (power) adapters are suitable products which use the power line cabling in the home to transmit an Ethernet signal, and in most cases provide a reliable, hassle-free connection from the Aurender to the network.
While some end users are also successful with using a WiFi Ethernet Bridge connection for the Aurender to the LAN, in a majority of cases these devices tend to provide an unreliable connection to the network and are not recommended.
Step 3 - Connect Power Cable
The power supply for Aurender Music Servers varies based on the model in use. The W20 and X100L are both free voltage and may be used in any region (120v or 220v) as they use a switch-mode power supply (SMPS). The N100H/N100C, A10, and N10 use linear power transformers which are configured for the region they are sold to. It is recommended to inspect the input voltage specification on the rear panel of a unit using a linear transformer before connecting to AC power, in order to ensure it is configured properly for your region.
It is also recommended to check the power outlet with a commonly available 3-wire power receptacle tester to ensure the outlet is properly wired and grounded before use. The Aurender Music Server should first be connected to a standard AC power outlet with the supplied power cable, before further experimentation with third party power products (such as power cables, line conditioners) is attempted.
Step 4 - Power On the Aurender
The back panel power switch connects the unit to the AC line when it is engaged. It should only be disengaged after the unit has been safely powered off using one of the power off methods (Link). Disengaging the switch or disconnecting the AC power cord while the unit is in operation can potentially cripple one or more of the disks in the unit, requiring a factory recovery or possible repair of the unit.
Once the switch is in the On position, the front panel power button will be dimly lit. Pressing the button will turn the unit on, which takes about a minute or two as the system boots up and performs an internal system check up. When the unit is ready for connection from the App, it will display "Please select song" on the front panel AMOLED.
Step 5 - Connect Conductor App
In a typical network environment, opening up the Conductor App for iPad will automatically connect the App to the Aurender. If there is more than one Aurender on the network, you will be required to specify which Aurender you wish to connect to (if the App has never been paired with the Aurender).
The first time you connect to an Aurender from the iPad app, you will be prompted to enter a 6-digit passcode that is displayed on the unit's front panel AMOLED display. Once the App is paired, it will automatically connect to the Aurender each time it is opened. In the case of multiple Aurenders on the network, the App will connect to the last used Aurender.
Conductor App Searches for Aurender
When the Conductor App does not automatically connect to the Aurender, it will search the network for an Aurender. This is usually because of a problem with device discovery protocols on the local area network. In order to remedy this, please check our troubleshooting guide.
Step 6 - Enjoy!
Once the Conductor App is connected to the Aurender, you may begin to enjoy listening to music immediately. A few sample tracks are provided on the internal storage, and if you have an active internet connection or streaming account, internet radio and streaming services are accessible as well.
For more in-depth information on transferring content to the internal storage, configuring streaming services, please refer to the rest of the guide contents.