Innuos ZEN MINI MK3 Music Server

INNUOS ZEN MINI MK3

MUSIC SERVER

THE NEW ZEN MINI MK3

The Innuos Mk3 Music Server Series continues our pursuit of bringing Digital Music to new heights. Learning from our experience and success with the ZENith MkII SE, and our new collaboration with Dr. Sean Jacobs, the Mk3 family now benefits from trickle-down technology from the highly regarded SE server.

We advanced our design in three key areas : minimizing power noise, reducing vibration and optimizing firmware, resulting in the entire range benefiting from significant upgrades.

The new Zen Mini MK3 is our gateway server with all the full benefits of innuOS, now with improved connectivity and a new upgrade path for even greater flexibility. Ideal for simple integration into multi-room systems or for those making the first step to a dedicated audio server.

 

New features include:

  • Custom motherboard with dual ethernet ports

    • Optimization for audio performance and network passthrough to nearby network devices.

  • Optical and coaxial SPDIF digital outputs.

  • Optional Linear Power Supply upgrade

    • Improve sound quality using our external LPSU upgrade in matching chassis, backward compatible with the ZENmini MkII.

​OVERVIEW

  • CD Ripper, NAS and Streamer

  • Floating optical drive and hard drive platform

  • Quiet operation with fan-less design

  • Low-power consumption for 24/7 operation

  • Fast quad-core Intel N4200 CPU and 4GB RAM

  • Compact half-width design

  • Standard Storage : 1 TB  ( 2TB  --  + $150  /  4TB -- +$400  /  8TB -- +$750 )

  • Outboard UPGRADED PSU [ after purchase ] : + $699

    • PSU chassis is the same half-width design as main server's chassis

    • Backward compatible with the Zen Mini MkII !

  • See Bundle Price below if purchased with Zen Mini MK3 Standard 

MAP  $ 1,249 - Standard Power Supply

MAP  $ 1,899 - Bundle Price  / 1TB with Linear PSU Upgrade

Free Direct Drop Shipping

We Invoice via SQUARE (CC) or PayPal. Call for Cash conditions. Delivery lead time is ​currently 7-10 Days   ​

REVIEWER REACTIONS

FAIRAUDIO / Germany -  Ralph Werner   January 2019

One thing is clear : the price / performance ratio of the Innuos ZENmini Mk3 is very good indeed. Everything is just right here. Here we have a situation where good processing quality meets up with exemplary intuitive user operability. This applies not only for the InnuOS app, but also for the browser-based music server management interface. But, more importantly, this is also a situation where the aforementioned processing quality and operating ease meets up with exemplary sonic performance. 

 

With the ZENmini MK3 it is less about the tonal balance -- which incidentally is actually always okay with most competitive digital signal components -- but is more about the ZENmini's sheer resolution and - particularly - the wonderfully plastic, precise and spacious representation of the musical events on the virtual stage.

 

But even for those of us who do not have an external DAC, we will be happy to discover that we will be well served by the ZENmini's onboard DAC, because what it provides on its analog outputs sounds very appropriate for a device in this price range, although logically not as good as when connecting a high quality stand-alone DAC.

 

The higher-quality Innuos ZENmini LPSU power supply is definitely worth listening to as an upgrade option, at least in the context of a high-quality and transparent hi-fi system - but also not a must-have. The Innuos ZENmini Mk3 sounds just too good in normal condition for that.

 

I can answer the question about whether the optional, higher quality Innuos ZENmini LPSU power supply unit - which is subject to a surcharge - really does something for me.... YES it does. The tonal gains offered by the LPSU can be experienced above all as an even better 3D spatial rendering of the soundstage, and a more accurate - even careful - handling of very quiet and delicate signals (decay of instruments, spatial cues, background noise on live recordings etc.). These improvements take you up the next step on the qualitative audiophile ladder.

Only you can decide whether it is worth +50% of the cost price of the server. If I may offer a very  pragmatic suggestion here : In the context of a transparent, high-resolution system in the five-figure investment range, I would highly recommend testing the power supply option. If however the chain only costs half as much, it can also be a good thing that the 500 euros ($650 in the US) can be used for other purposes.

 

Finally, if we were to highlight and to emphasize one particular strength of the Innuos ZENmini Mk3, then it is probably the excellent spatial presentation. The soundstage appears spacious and also very cleanly "illuminated" in the Depth axis, but above all the soundstage impresses with the afore-mentioned highly precise localization or sonic events, and the precision and “3D coherence” with which voices and instruments are represented and positioned. There is another positive side effect of this excellent spatial presentation :

The stage structure is blissfully "uncluttered" and transparent, and as such, instruments and vocals do not trespass on the others "space",  and no "haze" obscures or veils the overview of the musical action. 


 

AUDIO OUTPUTS

  • Digital Output  - USB 2.0 supporting USB Audio Class 2, DoP, Native DSD and MQA

  • Coaxial S/PDIF up to 24bit/192KHz

  • Optical S/PDIF up to 24bit/96KHz

  • Analog RCA Output - up to 24bit/192KHz

 

CONNECTIVITY

  • Ethernet - 2x isolated RJ45 Gigabit Ethernet - LAN and Streamer connection    

  • Other - 1x VGA (service connection only)    

  • USB - 2x USB 2.0 (DAC), 2x USB 3.0 (Backup)         

 

FORMATS

  • CD Formats  - Red Book    

  • Disc Compatibility -  CD, CD-R, CD-RW  

  • Audio format for stored CDs - FLAC (zero compression), WAV  

  • Audio Formats Supported for streaming and playing - WAV, AIFF, FLAC, ALAC, AAC, MP3         

 

SAMPLE RATES

  • Sample Rates  - 44.1kHz, 48kHz, 88.2kHz, 96kHz, 176.4KHz. 192kHz, 352.8KHz, 384KHz , DSD64, DSD128

  • Bit Depths - 16bit, 24bit, 32bit         

 

USER CONTROL INTERFACES

  • Web Interface - Web Browsers from iOS, Android (4.0 and up) or up-to-date Windows and OS X browsers    

  • Mobile - App for iPhone/iPad, Android and Windows 10         

 

HARDWARE

  • CD/DVD drive -TEAC Slot-loading drive    

  • Hard Drive - 1Tb WD RED HDD    

  • CPU - Intel Quad Core N4200    

  • Memory - 4Gb DDR3 - 2Gb dedicated for Memory Playback       

 

STREAMING AND CD STORAGE

  • UPnP/DLNA - UPnP Server DLNA device compatible    

  • USB - Connect and play to USB DACs (USB Audio Class 1 and Class 2, DoP)    

  • Average CD Storage Time - 5 minutes    

  • CD Metadata - OneMusicAPI aggregating multiple CD metadata sources

COMPATIBLE MUSIC SYSTEMS

  • Sonos Multi-room Wireless Music System

  • Naim Mu-so Multi-room Wireless Music System

  • Denon HEOS Multi-room Wireless Music System

  • Squeezebox Multi-room Wireless Music System

  • Naim Uniti music streamers

  • Linn DS music streamers

  • Pioneer N50A

  • Cambridge Audio CXN

  • Denon 720AE

  • DLNA/UPnP compatible devices

  • USB DACs complying to USB Audio Class 1 or 2

  • USB DACs supporting DSD over DoP protocol

 

REQUIREMENTS

  • Network

    • Internet connection to access album metadata when storing CDs, Internet Radio, Streaming Services and software updates

    • Network router with at least one available ethernet port

    • Premium subscription required for some streaming services such as Spotify, Qobuz and Tidal

  • Music Controller  -- Remote control app compatible with the Logitech Media Server (Free and Paid versions available) or Web Browser - Most modern web browsers and platforms are supported

  • DAC / Converter  -- DAC with USB input supporting USB Audio Class 1, USB Audio Class 2 or DoP protocols

 

POWER

  • Low ripple power adapter - 12V 5A / CEC level V efficiency

  • Power Consumption 10W when idle, 15W peak

 

PHYSICAL

  • Dimensions 70 x 220 x 220 mm (H x W x D)

  • Weight 4 Kg

Contact us to discuss an in-home DEMO

Innuos Zen Mini MK3 - Rear View

Our Take on the INNUOS Servers at Atelier 13 Audio

 

I really don't know where to start when it comes to describing the pleasure I am experiencing with the INNUOS servers in our various systems here at Atelier 13 Audio ...there are many aspects to this. I am essentially a Vinyl lover, appreciated the convenience of very acceptable CD-playback through top CD Transports and excellent DACs....but I had never been a friend of server-based playback whether Hi-Rez or otherwise. Ripping quality of CDs was dubious, restitution of downloaded hi-rez files not "exactly musical", and this in every sense of the what has been, and still was, commonly known as the sub-optimal "Digital Experience". With time, digital file quality improved somewhat, and DACs have certainly improved musically, at least some of them. Nonetheless, what still was a major annoyance was the geeky complexity of server operating application set-up, glitches in interface, and the notorious Wifi/Networking headaches plaguing the entire "Command and Control" aspect of the user experience.

 

Although I am over 60, I am not a computer neophyte as I use all manner of sophisticated CAD apps and have hacked my own Windows OS in the days when this was still easy. I personally will always be able to manage my way through the process of setting up server based systems. But I am also a Dealer, and very many of my clients are not able to do so, nor do they have the slightest inclination to want to be put through any sort of torture of this kind. As so much of this gear was still GEEK-oriented, something needed to change if servers were going to appeal to all types of users. 

 

Enter the INNUOS servers. Well, suffice it to say that it takes about 15 to 30 minutes to set up these servers and start listening to music ... Awesome ! 15minutes if opting for only UPNP, and about 15 minutes more if wanting to use ROON / Streaming as well. The INNUOS software itself is super-simple and intuitive. Its ability to link and operate with iPENG9 and Logitech LMS players is equally simple. So .. finally ...we now can look forward to no more headaches ...leaving the all important question: 

 

How do the INNUOS servers sound ? The answer is, in one word ... SUPERB, and this from a Vinyl lover ... truly superb.

... ahhh, "que les dieux de la musique soient bénis"... may the gods of music be blessed !

Innuos Zen Mini MK3 - Rear View
OTHER MK3 SERVERS
Innuos Music Server Functionality
InnuOS Operating System

Powered by innuOS

innuOS allows complete Music Library management using a tablet or smartphone. Ripping CDs, importing music, editing album data (including covers) and backing up your music library can all be done easily without the need for a PC/Mac computer. innuOS also contains many intelligent features to help organise your Music Library such as our rule-based music import engine or the Assisted CD Ripping mode.

 

Innuos Music Server Functionality

Intelligent CD Ripping

Bit-Perfect Ripping
Using AccurateStream technology, extract every last bit of your CDs into WAV or FLAC files.

Automatic CD Ripping
Just pop-in a CD! innuOS will automatically get full album data and cover from multiple online databases, rip your CD and eject when done.

Assisted CD Ripping
Assisted CD Ripping allows you to see and edit all the album data and cover obtained from the online databases before you rip the CD. Great for Classical Music!

Quiet Mode
Love to listen to music whilst ripping your CDs and want absolute silence? Just engage Quiet Mode for slowing down ripping, making it much quieter and with less vibration.

Offline Ripping
CDs can be ripped without internet connection. When connected, album data and cover for all offline ripped CDs will be obtained with a simple click.

Innuos Music Server Functionality

Digital Music Import

Import Wizards for Existing Libraries

Pre-defined wizards for importing music from USB storage, Music Servers and NAS.

Intelligent Import Engine
innuOS takes all the hard work of importing music by intelligently analyzing the music files and applying a number of rules such as:

  • Organising the music based on format quality (compressed, cd quality or high-resolution), Artist and Album

  • Removing very long file names or illegal characters

  • Adding metadata to WAV files based on folder structure


Download from Online Stores
Qobuz, Linn Records, HD Tracks, HiResAudio, B&W Society of Sound, iTunes, Amazon and more. Just download the music files (even if they are in a zip or tar file) to the Auto Import shared folder and the server will take care of adding and updating the music library.

Innuos Music Server Functionality

Music Library Management

Edit or Delete Albums
Browse your library, select the album you want to update and just start editing directly on your tablet or smartphone. You can change the cover, manage genres based on previously used genres or simply delete the album - couldn’t be easier.

Quarantine
Quarantine is a staging area, separate from the Music Library, where any albums requiring attention are placed so they can be fixed before they go into the Music Library. These include :

  • Albums with no metadata

  • Ripped albums with damaged tracks

  • Potentially duplicated albums

  • Albums ripped offline


Automatic Music Library Update
After music is added, modified or deleted, the library is automatically updated as well as any connected systems such as Sonos or UPnP Streamers.

Music Server Management

Automatic Network Identification
No more figuring out IP addresses find your server. Just go to my.innuos.com on your tablet or smartphone to list all Innuos devices on the network and access the innuOS App from there.

Remote Updates
Update the system with a touch of a button to benefit from our continuous improvements: new functionalities, enriched customer experience or enhanced sound quality.

Automatic Backup to USB Drive or NAS
Backup of your music library can be set on innuOS to start automatically based on library growth (e.g. every time 50 CDs are added) to either a USB backup drive or to a NAS on the network.

Innuos Music Server Functionality
Innuos Music Server Functionality

HIFI Music Player

Rediscover Your Music and Discover New One
Play all your music as well as Internet Radio and streaming services with the best sound quality by connecting directly to a DAC or Digital Amplifier via asynchronous USB.

  • Spotify

  • Tidal

  • Qobuz

  • BBC iPlayer

Spotify, Tidal and Qobuz require premium subscription

Supports All Major Music Formats
The innuOS Music Player plays FLAC, DSD, MQA, WAV, Apple Lossless, AIFF, M4A and MP3 supporting bitrates up to 32bit/384KHz and DSD256, when connecting to compatible DACs

Playback from NAS
Play music stored on an external NAS drive.

Roon-Ready Player
The innuOS Music Player can optionally become a Roon-Ready player so you can use the amazing Roon interface to explore your music like never before.

STREAMERS & MULTI ROOM SYSTEMS

Perfect Integration with Sonos
innuOS can automatically connect its music library to a Sonos system at the touch of a button as well as automatically rescan the Sonos Music Library when any album is added, modified or deleted from the Music Library.

Fast and Reliable UPnP Server
innuOS also contains a UPnP Server configured out-of-the-box to work flawlessly with a number of UPnP-based systems:

  • Wireless multi-room: such as Denon HEOS, Bang & Olufsen and BOSE amongst others

  • Music streamers such as Naim, Linn , Moon, Auralic and many others

 

Roon Server
innuOS will also optionally integrate Roon Core* so you can use innuOS with other Roon-Ready streamers for a complete multi-room system.

* A Roon license, purchased separately, is required

Home Automation
innuOS can be integrated with the most popular home automation control systems such as RTI, Control4, KNX, AMX, Elan, Crestron and iRidium.

Innuos Music Server Functionality
Nuno Vitorino of Innuos

In this video, Innuos’ R&D Director Nuno Vitorino

goes longer on each MK3 model’s specifics

MUSIC

PLAYER

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atelier 13 audio

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