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Arcam aims high-end music server at audiophiles

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It's the most expensive music centre we've seen and we're sure there are countless hardware geeks who could build a box that does the same thing for a fraction of the £3000 Arcam wants, but there's no doubt the FMJ MS250 has the look.

Arcam FMJ MS250 music server
Arcam's FMJ MS250: 400GB of song storage

And the capacity: there's a 400GB hard drive on board, ready to take more than 600 CDs worth of uncompressed songs or thousands and thousands of them if you don't mind using MP3, WMA or AAC. The integrated CD player can be set to auto-rip your discs, and it's a burner too, for making custom CDs and back-ups.

The MS250 has on-board 10/100Mbps Ethernet for networking, with the unit able to stream songs out to computers or play incoming streams, whether from a Mac, PC or an Internet radio station. It has its own monitor port so you can hook up a bigger display than the MS250's own LED panel. USB ports provide a way to hook up a keyboard to type in those handy song ID tags, Arcam said. What, three grand doesn't buy me Gracenote support, guys? No, but it does buy FreeDB support, still potentially saving all that typing.

Arcam FMJ MS250 music server
Arcam's FMJ MS250: ready for networking

USB is also handy for connecting back-up drives and Flash keys, but for the retro hardware buff there's an RS-232 port on the back too. And sufficient audio portage, we'd add, to feed four amplifiers independently.

The FMJ MS250 is available now from Arcam's band of stockists.

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