About the HiFi Rose RS250
Sweet high-res streaming
Sweet high-res streaming
Intuitive touchscreen and app control give the high-performance RS250 streamer an edge.
After a few minutes experimenting with HiFi Rose's RS250 streamer, you may wonder why more streaming components don't have touchscreens.
HiFi Rose's onboard customized Android™ OS gives the premium streamer/DAC/preamplifier a user-friendliness that will feel intuitive to mobile users in general. Audiophiles will appreciate its authoritative but smooth sound. I also love the cool touchscreen features, like the functional virtual back panel for switching inputs and outputs and the virtual VU meters.
I grew up playing vinyl, and then CDs. Streaming was a hard sell, but at this point I see it as an amazing — sometimes overwhelming — and necessary asset. App control across the different platforms isn't always intuitive — it's still the main reason my wife rarely opts for streaming music when she's picking out something to play.
The RS250 feels different. It connects to your internet via Ethernet or built-in Wi-Fi. The interface is user-friendly whether you're using its front-panel touchscreen apps and volume/mute knob, or the free RoseConnect app for Apple® and Android devices. It organizes your different sources — from streaming services including TIDAL, Qobuz, and Spotify, to music files stored in one of its onboard options or your NAS server — in a way that feels almost Roon-like. (By the way, this player is also a Roon endpoint.)
You can also use Apple AirPlay® to control the streamer, or the included Bluetooth remote. Free automatic updates make sure it keeps pace with evolving tech and its expanding capabilities.
Quiet noise-floor makes way for nuanced detail
What I really love about the RS250 is that it stays out of your way. It's true of the interface, and especially true in how it treats audio signals, which it delivers in lifelike clarity with a super-quiet noise floor and very low distortion.
It runs on a snappy hexa-core CPU with a high-performance ESS SABRE DAC capable of 32-bit/768kHz resolution. Also key to its impressive sound is its digital clock, which drastically reduces the distorted edges inherent in digital music transmission by aligning the spaces between the data. The RS250's femto clock measures time down to the femtosecond — one quadrillionth of a second — for exceptionally smooth, precise audio.
4K video rabbit hole
Endless video digressions await you, thanks to the RS250's 4K video decoding via its HDMI 2.0 output. The RoseTube app lets you peruse and play YouTube videos that you can watch on the unit's full color screen or — even better — on your TV. And its digital audio inputs let you get beautiful soundtrack audio from whatever you might be watching.
Exceptional build quality and bountiful connections
You'll notice the attention to detail when you handle the RS250. From the rigid aluminum-panel construction to the understated style of its beautiful glass touchscreen display, you can feel that it's built to dampen vibration — and to last. Under the hood, its toroidal transformer and shielded circuitry work to minimize unwanted noise.
On the back panel you have ample digital connections, unbalanced analog output for connection to your amplifier, and an RCA stereo analog input. You could connect a USB drive, HiFi Rose RSA780E CD drive, or another CD player — even a turntable with a phono preamp.
Flexible local storage options
The RS250 has USB connections for local access to external digital music files. And all HiFi Rose models include an internal bay on the bottom panel for adding optional SSD storage. The player will recognize drives up to 4TB, which is much more than you'll probably ever use.
- high-performance network audio and 4K video streamer
- solid aluminum panel chassis
- 8.8-inch-wide high-def touchscreen LCD display
- built-in dual-band Wi-Fi 5 (802.11ac)
- customized Android operating system
- control with touchscreen, Rose Connect app for Apple® and Android™ devices, or included Bluetooth remote
- front-panel volume control/mute knob
- hexa-core CPU:
- dual-core Cortex-A72 CPU up to 1.8 GHz
- quad-core Cortex-A53 up to 1.4 GHz
- ESS SABRE ES9038 Q2M DAC
- maximum resolution: 32-bit/768 KHz
- supports Apple AirPlay, DLNA, Roon, and MQA (full decoder)
- supports TIDAL, Spotify, Qobuz, RoseTube (YouTube), internet radio stations, and RosePodcast
- supported audio formats include MQA, WAV, FLAC, AIFF, WMA, MP3, OGG, M4A and more
- PCM decoding up to 32-bit/768kHz
- native DSD decoding up to DSD512 (22.4MHz)
- supported video formats include ASF, AVI, MKV, MP4, WMV, MPEG-1, MPEG-2, MPEG-4, and more up to 4K resolution
- Ethernet port for connection to your home network
- HDMI video output with up to 4K resolution
- digital inputs:
- Toslink optical
- USB 3.0 audio input for connecting the HiFi Rose RSA780E CD drive (sold separately) or other external drive
- analog input:
- stereo RCA unbalanced line in
- digital outputs:
- Toslink optical
- USB 3.0 audio output for connecting to an external DAC
- analog outputs:
- stereo RCA unbalanced preamp out
- 3.5mm headphone jack
- storage interface:
- USB 3.0
- enclosed bay for optional 7mm SSD (solid-state drive) up to 4TB
- total harmonic distortion: 0.0003% (1KHz 2.3Vrms)
- signal to noise ratio: 116 dB
- 11"W x 3-1/4"H x 10-1/12"D
- 7.1 lbs.
- warranty: 1 year
- Our 60-day money-back guarantee
- MFR # RS250 SLV
What's in the box:
- Network audio streamer
- Three 6' AC power cords (US / Euro / UK plugs)
- Remote control
- 2 "AAA" batteries
- 4 Screws
- Owner's Manual
HiFi Rose RS250 reviews
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More details on the HiFi Rose RS250
Features & specs
|Optical Digital Inputs||1|
|Coaxial Digital Inputs||1|
|USB Type A||1|
|USB Type B||1|
|Optical Digital Outputs||1|
|Coaxial Digital Outputs||1|
|DAC Bit Depth||32-bit|
|DAC Sample Rate||768 kHz|
|Bluetooth Formats Supported||Y|
|Frequency Bands||2.4, 5GHz|
|Apple Control App||Apple iOS, Android|
|Android Control App||Apple iOS, Android|
|12 Volt Trigger||No|
|Parts Warranty||1 Year|
|Labor Warranty||1 Year|
Network & Bluetooth Integration
Intuitive User Interface
ESS Flagship DAC (ES9038 Q2M): The HiFi Rose RS250 network streamer employs an audiophile-grade ESS Flagship DAC (ES9038 Q2M) that supports Hi-Res PCM audio files (up to 32-bit/768kHz), Native DSD music files (up to 22.4MHz), MQA Technology, plus many other audio formats.
- MQA: The integration of MQA technology enables you to playback MQA audio files and streams, delivering the sound of the original master recording. MQA is a revolutionary end-to-end technology that captures and delivers master quality audio in a file that's small enough to stream or download. MQA lets you hear your streamed digital music files exactly like the way the artist intended you to hear it when it was approved in the studio.
- Native DSD: DSD is high-resolution digital audio format that uses a single bit to deliver a high resolution signal. Instead of sampling the information several thousand times a second, this single bit samples 2.8 million times a second to generate the audio signal. The result is still a Hi-Res audio signal that clean and pure. The RS250 supports DSD64 (2.8MHz), DSD128 (5.6MHz), DSD256 (11.2MHz), and DSD512 (22.4MHz).
- PCM: The HiFi Rose RS250 also supports linear PCM audio files with a bit depth of 16- / 24- / 32-bits, and a sampling frequency of 8Hz to 768kHz.
- Other File Types: Other supported audio file type include AAC, ALAC, AIFF, WAV, FLAC, WMA, MP3, APE, DFF, DSF
Linear Power Circuit Design: The linear power supply of the HiFi Rose RS250 network streamer provides a clean and reliable power supply to the CPU and audio output circuits. The fully linear power supply and extra shielding block out noise that may be transmitted to the sensitive DAC for the best possible sound reproduction.
Aluminum Chassis: A high-purity aluminum chassis maximizes the RS250 network streamer's thermal efficiency. By minimizing the assembly area of the chassis, vibration that can affect sound quality is greatly reduced, creating a profound and ideal sense of space.
Analog Line-Level Input: The HiFi Rose RS250 features one analog stereo RCA line-level input for connection of an external source device with an analog output. The network streamer does not have a Phono input. If you want to connect a turntable, you'll need an external phono preamp (sold separately - see Accessories Tab) or a turntable with a built-in preamp.
Digital Audio Inputs/Outputs: The RS250 network streamer is equipped with an optical (toslink) digital input and output, plus a coaxial (RCA) digital input and output. The digital inputs allow you to connect a CD, DVD, or Blu-ray player. The digital outputs let you connect an external DAC. The digital inputs and outputs support up to 24-bit/192kHz PCM audio (not compatible with Dolby Digital, DTS, or other multichannel surround formats).
Media Ports: The HiFi Rose RS250 network streamer is outfitted with a USB-B port, USB-A 2.0 port, USB-A 3.0 port, and SATA 3.0 slot for playback of select audio and video files from computers, USB MSC devices, HDDs, and SSDs. Compatible audio fiels include MQA, PCM (up to 32-bit/384kHz) , DSD (up to 11.2MHz), WAV, FLAC, WMA, MP3, APE, DFF, and DSF. Compatible video files include ASF, AVI, MKV, MP4, WMV, MPEG-1, MPEG-2, MPEG-4 H.263, H.264, H.265, and more (up to 4K).
- USB-B (Audio Only): The rear-panel USB-B port allows you to connect a Windows PC (7-up) or Mac (OS X) computer for playback of your stored digital music library on the RS250 network streamer. A separate USB audio driver will need to be installed on your Windows PC. A mac computer will not require a separate USB driver.
- USB 2.0/3.0 (Audio/Video): The RS250 is outfitted with two rear-panel USB-A ports for playback of audio and video files from a connected USB device; there is one USB-A 2.0 port and one USB-A 3.0 port. Both USB-A ports support connection of a USB MSC (mass storage class) device - up to 512GB, or HDD (hard disk drive) - up to 10TB. The USB MSC device or HDD must be formatted in NTFS or FAT32. Some HDD's will require an external AC power supply.
- SATA 3.0 (Audio/Video: The HiFi Rose RS250 allows you to connect an external SSD (Solid State Drive) to its bottom-mounted SATA 3.0 slot for playback of audio and video files. It can support SSD's up to 4TB and 7mm tall. Four screws are included and a screwdriver is needed for installation of an external SSD (sold separately - not available at Crutchfield).
Note: The USB-A ports do not support media playback from an Apple iOS or Android OS device.
Optional CD Drive: Connecting the optional HiFi Rose RSA780E CD drive (sold separately) to the RS250's USB-A 2.0 port allows you to rip Audio CD's to a connected USB MSC device, HDD (hard disk drive), or SSD (solid State Drive).
HDMI Video Out: The HiFi Rose RS250's rear-panel HDMI 2.0 out will transmit a video signal from the RoseTube (YouTube client), a USB MSC device, HDD (hard disk drive), or SSD (Solid State Drive) to your connected TV or projector. Compatible video files include MPEG-1, MPEG-2, MPEG-4 H.263, H.264, H.265, VC-1, VP9, VP8, MVC (up to 4K @ 30fps or 60fps).
Note: The HDMI output supports video transmission only and does not support audio transmission (it is not ARC/eARC compatible).
Stereo RCA Preamp Output (Fixed or Variable): The HiFi Rose RS250 is equipped with a set of stereo RCA preamp outputs to connect your AV receiver, integrated amplifier, or power amplifier. You can select Variable or Fixed for the stereo RCA preamp outputs.
3.5mm Headphone Output: The HiFi Rose RS250 network streamer features a front-panel 3.5mm (1/8") headphone jack for connecting a set of headphones so you can privately listen to your favorite music. You can enjoy better sound quality by selecting the output (16, 32, 50, or 100 ohm) that best matches your headphones' specifications. The unit's preamp outputs are muted when headphones are connected.
Network & Bluetooth Integration
Wired or Wireless Network Connection: The HiFi Rose RS250 network streamer offers a wired (Ethernet) and wireless (WiFi) network connection to your router and ISP (internet service provider). The RS250 features a rear-panel Ethernet (RJ45) LAN jack for a wired connection to your network router. It also features 2.4GHz/5GHz dual-band WiFi (802.11ac) for a wireless connection to your WiFi enabled network router.
Online Entertainment Services: The HiFi Rose RS250 network streamer gives you access to a variety of online video and music services - including RoseTube (YouTube client), Rose Podcasts, Tidal, Qobuz, Spotify Connect, and Internet Radio.
- RoseTube: RoseTube is a YouTube client developed by the Rose development team using the YouTube API provided by Google. Unlike YouTube, you can watch content without any advertisements before watching the content, and it provides a list of recommended contents suitable for HiFi enthusiasts. And regardless of the video quality, the highest quality audio tracks are always selected for playback, allowing you to enjoy YouTube in high quality.
- Rose Podcast: Rose Podcast (provided by iTunes) offers the most popular channels that are organized by topic. You can create your own subscriptions, playlists and favorite content.
- Rose Radio: You can listen to hundreds of Internet radio broadcasts from around the world with a Favorite (preset) feature, using Rose Radio.
- Tidal: Tidal is a global streaming service that offers millions of songs in high-fidelity CD sound quality. Tidal has two pricing tiers; either $9.99 or $19.99 a month. Both pricing levels allow you to access Tidal 's entire music library. The $19.99 tier has the added benefit of high-fidelity sound at CD-level quality.
- Qobuz: Qobuz offers the biggest catalog of HiFi and Hi-Res albums in the world, both for new releases and specialized genres. For hundreds of thousands of albums, Qobuz includes all the information you need to recreate the appeal of a real CD - the names of musicians, producers, lyrics (everything you need to know to appreciate your favorite albums). Qobuz offers MP3, CD, and Hi-Res quality subscriptions.
- Spotify Connect: The integration of Spotify Connect will enable Spotify Premium users (subscription required) to instantly select and wirelessly stream music to the RS250 network streamer from within the Spotify app (Apple iOS or Android). Spotify is a digital music service that gives you on-demand access to one of the largest music libraries in the world with millions of songs available.
Apple AirPlay: AirPlay lets you stream your favorite songs directly from your Apple iOS (4.3.3+) device or from your iTunes (10.2.2+) library on your Windows PC or Mac computer to the HiFi Rose RS250, over your home's wireless network connection. From your Apple iOS device you are able to stream stored music on your device, downloaded music apps, and music on your iCloud to the RS250 network streamer. From your Windows or Mac you can stream your stored iTunes music library on your computer to the RS250; you can even download Apple's free Remote App onto your compatible iOS device to browse and control playback functions of the music stored in your iTunes music library on your computer that is being streamed to the network streamer. With AirPlay you also get to see song/artist information and album art via the RS250's front-panel LCD touchscreen.
Note: The RS250 is currently not compatible with Apple AirPlay 2.
DLNA Compliant: Through a wired or wireless network connection, the HiFi Rose RS250 can be used as a DLNA Digital Media Renderer and play back a variety of audio files from a Windows PC, DLNA server, and NAS (Network Attached Storage) device. Compatible music files include MQA, PCM (up to 32-bit/768kHz), DSD (up to 22.4MHz), WAV, FLAC, WMA, MP3, APE, DFF, and DSF.
Roon Ready: Roon is a feature rich music library and playback application that compiles all the music files available to your network and makes them easily available to play across the HiFi Rose RS250 and other Roon enabled audio devices. Roon manages digital music files (including FLAC, WAV,, and DSD) collected on hard drives and networked storage. It can also access your Apple Music and iTunes library, as well as optionally integrate with the Tidal and Qobuz music streaming service. Roon is available for mobile, laptop or desktop devices. When you open the Roon app, it will display your complete audio library together with its metadata and artwork along with the RS250 network streamer and all other Roon enabled devices. Simply select the music you wish to play and the RS250 or Roon device in which you want to hear it on.
Note: To use Roon you will need a Roon Core running on the same network as the HiFi Rose RS250. The Core is media server software that runs on your computer, NAS, or player (sold separately) located on the network within your home.
Bluetooth 4.0: The HiFi Rose RS250 features built-in Bluetooth 4.0 with support for wireless music streaming (A2DP) and control (AVRCP). You'll be able to wirelessly stream stored music, music apps and other audio content on your Bluetooth-enabled smartphone, tablet, laptop, or desktop computer to the RS250 network streamer. You'll also be able to control basic playback functions Play/Pause, Previous/Next Track, and Volume Up/Down from the included remote. In addition, song/artist/album information (no album art) will be displayed on the network streamer's front-panel LCD screen.
Note: You can pair multiple Bluetooth source devices with the RS250 network streamer, but only one source device can be connected and used for playback at a time.
Intuitive User Interface
8.8" Capacitive Touchscreen: The HiFi Rose RS250 network streamer features a full-color 8.8" TFT capacitive touchscreen LCD panel for an intuitive user interface with simple operation. In addition to simple touchscreen operation, the 8.8" LCD panel will playback HD video from RoseTube, USB, and SSD. The front-panel 8.8" LCD also displays song/artist/album information (including album art) from select online music services and your network music collection. The LCD touchscreen will even display time, date, and weather.
Remote Control: The HiFi Rose RS250 comes with a Bluetooth remote controller for wireless operation of the network streamer. Because the remote is Bluetooth (and not IR), you don't need to point the remote directly at the RS250 network streamer. The Bluetooth remote control has to be initially paired and connected to the RS250 network streamer.
Note: The remote only provides basic control of the RS250; you'll need the Rose Connect app (see below) for complete control of the network streamer.
RoseConnect Premium App: The RoseConnect Premium App (for Apple iOS 13.0+, Android OS 7.0+, Windows 7-up, and Mac OS X) allows you to conveniently setup and operate the HiFi Rose RS250 network streamer from your compatible Apple iOS device, Android OS device, Windows PC, or Mac computer.
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