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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 with current streaming platforms, what follows should rejoice you. Futura discovered and tested the Octavio Stream, a connected box Wireless that you simply plug into one of the inputs of your audio system and thanks to which you will be able to play music via any streaming service.

The secret weapon of this device is that it supports playback in Hi-Res quality (the most powerful format available for streaming) without loss up to 24 bits/192 kHz. For 199 euros, the Octavio Stream is aimed at people who want to modernize their somewhat aging audio system or at audiophiles looking for a simple solution to stream from Amazon music, Apple Music, Deezer Premium, Qobuz and Tidal 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 start-up. The electronics come from Asia, but the manufacture of the case, that of the packaging as well as the assembly of the device are carried out in France in Tourcoing and its surroundings. As a result, the Octavio Stream is not only designed for lovers of his of quality but gate also the values ​​of this young company which 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 made in plastic by injection 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 (2.4 GHz and 5 GHz) and Bluetooth 5.0. The device was delivered to us with a cable analog RCA type but you can opt for a 3.5 mm jack cable or a cable when ordering. digital mini toslink/toslink depending on the equipment to which you want to connect the reader.

Quality-oriented electronics

Under the hood is a processor RMA Cortex-A53 and a DAC (digital to analog converter) PCM5102 which can go up to the format Direct Stream Digital (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. “, explained to us the designers.

The box supports codecs audio, FLAC, OGG, ALAC, WMA, APE and MP3 codecs. It is also AirPlay 2 compatible and can support playback gapless (without gap between pieces) via Qobuz. The Wi-Fi connection does not impose any compression noise that may affect audio quality. Result, the diffusion of music is lossless from the source. If the song is played on Qobuz in 24 bits 192 kHz, 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 speakers that had been dormant for several years at the 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 bits/44.1 kHz) and Hi-Res (from 24 bits/96 kHz).

Between the connection of the box and its software configuration via a smart phone Pixel 6 Proit took us less than five minutes to start listen to music. We started with a few tracks from Spotify which automatically detected the Octavio Steam. Everything works as expected and our Hi-Fi installation was back in service in the blink of an eye.eye while benefiting from the flexibility of streaming.

But it was Qobuz that interested us a lot for the promise of lossless Hi-Res listening. And there, disappointment to discover that the automatic connection function is not available in theapplication. A shortcoming that is not due to Octavio but to Qobuz. We asked the French streaming service about it, which assured us that this function 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 specificities of each platform. But we don’t find all of its benchmarks and the experience with Qobuz left us somewhat unsatisfied, particularly in terms of the search engine and recommendations.

On the other hand, the listening quality is totally there with, for certain titles, a Hi-Res sound in 24 bits 192 kHz. We have happily rediscovered all the musicality of our Opus loudspeakers, with a sound whose dimension and refinement have no equal in theuniverse of the connected speakers modern. loyalty and transparency of the Octavio Stream are exemplary.

Futura’s opinion

The Octavio Steam fulfills its mission and delivers on its promise to bring classic audio systems back to life. It is an excellent option for anyone who has a Hi-Fi system that they no longer use or want to modernize and a good way to combat unjustified obsolescence.

WE love

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

We love less

  • Perfectible level of finish

Futura’s note

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