Audiophile Style Reviews Antipodes Audio KALA K50

Audiophile Style reviews Antipodes Audio KALA K50 G4 with AMSv5

"enabled me to forget about the microscopic details and just let the music hit me"


Great review! However, it appears that Chris hasn’t explored the potential of combining Squeeze + Squeeze on the K50 yet. In my opinion, and possibly yours too, he might be overlooking a significant audio quality improvement, as the SQ of this configuration could likely surpass the MPD + Minimserver combination he previously praised. Right after reading his review on AS I teased him to reconsider and give it a listen, hoping to sway his opinion. With the caliber of audio equipment he possesses, any improvement in sound quality should be quite discernible.

It’s intriguing that Chris mentions a Squeeze allergy and seems willing to compromise SQ for a better interface, favoring JPLAY. Neither did Christiaan Punter push it any further in his recent review of the G4 Oladra:
The Oladra will be listened to mostly using Roon, although I should mention that Antipodes are a big fan of using Squeeze, either with Squeeze Server or as an endpoint combined with Roon.

Perhaps it’s time for someone to address the Squeeze GUI comprehensively. While AMSv5 may not have tackled this issue, considering its focus on different aspects of music playback, companies like Antipodes heavily rely on Squeeze for top performance and an upscaled Material, with GUI design elements like we got used to in JPLAY and ROON could be a priority in the near future, whether it’s from Antipodes, JPLAY, or other innovative developers.

Some folks just aren’t willing to trade off user experience for sound quality. It’s okay to have different priorities.

I honestly thought that JPlay was a step back in user experience from the Material interface. Material’s interface for display on a smaller screen (iPhone, for example) makes a far better use of the limited real estate.

Having another look at JPlay reminded me that I needed to cancel the auto-renew subscription through the app store. I just did that. I held onto it for use with my Poly/Mojo2, but Rigelian does everything I need for a fraction of the price.

Is audiophilestyle going to have a dedicated Antipodes forum now?
I think @kennyb123 should start one :slight_smile:

I think it is always good to get another perspective on how to use your Antipodes.

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@kennyb123 I want to emphasize my point: while I’m not sure if you lean towards Squeeze + Squeeze, especially if it’s endorsed by Antipodes and proven to outperform others, today I observe that at least two reviewers opt for JPLAY or ROON interfaces, aligning with the preferences of the majority of users. It appears to me that settling for a trade-off is entirely avoidable.

Moreover, both reviewers could have easily accessed the optimal server settings if they weren’t “allergic” or “Rooned.” @MarkCole While I respect everyone’s choices, there’s value in listening and discovering. It’s through such exploration that we all make progress in this shared passion.

In the present scenario, there’s a need to make choices and set priorities concerning user experience. However, if the option exists to have both, why not explore that possibility?

Anyway, I’ve already deviated from the main topic. Let’s refocus on the latest G4 servers & reviews. If I have time I’ll start a topic about GUI and we’ll see. Actually when I think of it Squeeze & GUI has been discussed here in '21, '22, and '23. Maybe I follow up there. :grinning:

You can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make it drink. Antipodes did a fantastic job making it easy to switch apps. It’s up to each individual user whether they want to drink.

I can understand reviewers wanting to stick with a single app. Why should they invest time in learning a new app when the server they are reviewing will eventually have to be sent back? Rhetorical question.

I want to highlight that my goal is not to diminish the significant effort put into Antipodes’ work or to disregard the simplicity of switching apps. My primary focus is on advocating for the development of an interface comparable to Roon or JPLAY, one that seamlessly handles the double Squeeze setting with the same level of accessibility and elegance. This is aimed at avoiding the need to invest time in learning a new app.

While you mentioned your contentment with Material on your phone, it’s essential to recognize that others, including myself, may have distinct preferences and a specific desire for easy access to squeeze + squeeze. I understand if this might not be a concern for you, and that’s completely understandable. Moreover, reviewers must adapt to the app available on the device they are evaluating. Having an easy-to-use squeeze app would enable them to effortlessly experience the best it has to offer. Please take my words at face value without overanalyzing or reading too much into them.


At least Christiaan is pretty good about using the various outputs, and comparing cables.

If you want to understand my position on such things, just ask. I try to keep my forum posts short and to the point so drawing conclusions from what I didn’t say would more often than not put words in my mouth.

I tend to favor quality over quantity. We have one very high quality forum here. Antipodes sponsored a forum on WBF and the posts have been high quality but traffic has been light IMHO. A forum on AS might dilute it further plus Antipodes would have to cough up a fee if they wanted to participate on there.

There’s a great thread on HeadFi as well. That thread actually got me thinking of going with Antipodes in the first place. Nothing preventing any of us from creating a similar unsponsored thread on AS. I’m open to the idea.

Looks like Chris already did it per my suggestion :slight_smile:

I would post on WBF but they have blocked my IP for some unknown reason.

I forgot about HeadFi- I’ll need to check it out.

Nice! Despite my remarks, I will contribute there at some point.

@watts I appreciate and respect Christiaan’s work; he is undeniably one of, if not the best, writers out there. My intention is not to criticize him or prove some neglect in auditioning. Again, please take my words at face value without overanalyzing or reading too much into them. Proposing a new way of doing things does not automatically imply that the usual way is not good or incorrect; it’s merely a suggestion for exploration and consideration.

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I am in the camp of finding reviewers comments on streamers when using Roon as being bemusing and perplexing. Indeed it makes me question the whole veracity of their review when they start praising Roon’s sound quality.

This is particularly the case when the review concerns a particular streamer made in the Netherlands which only uses Roon. I’m sure we all know the one I mean, it has recently just had an option launched with an integral dac. I had the streamer in my system for 3 weeks and indeed compared to other devices using Roon it was pretty good but as soon as it was compared to an Antipodes streamer using Squeeze + Squeeze then the sound of the streamer from the Netherlands was left trailing in its wake (and an hour later was packed up and returned to the dealer).

When I watch a film on the telly I don’t need or want the ability to search for other films by the actors or for me to do any of the things that I can do in Roon. All I want to do is watch the film. The same is the case when I listen to an album. All I want to do is listen to the album or track using the best available sound quality.

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I wonder if the rating differences are due to AMS v5.0.0…

Good point, I wonder that.

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I’m happy to read that, because I didn’t know exactly which direction to take, and it is impossible to demo all the streamer options where I live hours from a large city and without any significant dealer relationships. Does someone need to find a way to buy 50k worth of streamers, and then return 2 of the 3, or 3 of 4? Is it even possible to organize several streamers in a single month, especially if one of them is in such high demand it has a 2 month demo wait? So someone like myself essentially has to read, read, post questions, and read, and then go out on a limb and buy one and hope for the best.

But yes I hear what you are saying, in order to review and compare streamers it would be nice if they compared streamer A vs. streamer B both in each’s optimum setup.

I almost bought the streamer only version of the brand you are referring to, as I feel my DAC is up to the task, and only went with Antipodes because I have neutral components, my DAC was even reported as “clinical and analytical” by some, and my ears told me I needed a little more robust bottom end and a weighty presentation, which by several accounts the Antipodes was reported as having compared to the Netherlands one. I am sure I would still be happy with either, after a few different cabling swaps.

We all have our priorities and preferences with sound quality, so I don’t doubt what they are hearing, and I am just 1 week into my K50 so all is still new, but I believe I am finding Roon does have more weight than squeeze, with that weight it is a little “chestier” and not quite as clean, to my ears. I might not have ever tried squeeze if it were not for posters here claiming it superior. If I could indulge you, was it the thicker, perhaps more opaque bottom end, or the overall resolution- or something else you didn’t care for with Roon on the other streamer vs. squeeze on Antipodes?

Regarding your comment on albums, I find since acquiring my Weiss DAC, and now a “proper” core in the K50, I am listening to more albums, in their entirety, compared to flipping from song to song. If that is not proof the money was well spent I don’t know what is.

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The way roon integrates tidal, qobuz, search and my local library keeps me coming back. Jplay looks a lot like roon but integration is lacking. Squeeze gui is stuck in the 90’s. Sound is squeeze>upnp(jplay etc)>roon but they are all so close that roon’s integration makes it the winner for me.

Hopefully squeeze, mpd integration moves the dial.