No less than 50 solutions are available for the BluOS streaming platform, ranging from compact wireless multiroom speakers, sound bar systems, streaming clients and network AV receivers, active speakers for proven hi-fi solutions, to complex custom installation systems. All now receive the latest update with Bluesound BluOS 3.10.
BluOS has established itself as one of the leading streaming platforms over the last few years and has proven its worth. The great success of this technology platform is primarily due to the fact that it has always been an extremely versatile, absolutely reliable streaming solution that was designed from the ground up to meet the needs of high-quality hi-fi and installation solutions. Not only was the platform designed right from the start for content in hi-fi audio with up to 24 bit and 192 kHz, and for intuitive control and flexible integration of a wide range of services, but the solution was actually not designed for individual products, but rather as a platform. This allowed the ecosystem around BluOS to grow successively.
The Canadian company BluOS is known as the software forge of Lenbrook Intermational, which has been responsible for the development of the BluOS streaming platform for quite some time. Originally founded by NAD Electronics International, it was then outsourced as Bluesound International, and is now being promoted as the independent software company BluOS. This makes it possible to support not only Lenbrook International’s own sister companies such as NAD and Bluesound as technology partners, but also other partners such as Dail Speaker A/S, Monitor Audio Ltd. and Roksan Audio Ltd. In addition, Bluesound Professional, a new division at Lenbrook International, has recently been added, which deals specifically with custom installation solutions, which of course, how could it be otherwise, rely on the BluOS technology platform.
Over the years, more than 50 products have come together, all of which are based on BluOS, be it from NAD, Bluesound, Bluesound Professional, but also from partners such as Dali Speaker A/S and most recently Monitor Audio Ltd.
The spectrum reaches here for instance with the Wireless Multiroom Speakern in such a way specified from the house Bluesound, like the Bluesound FLEX 2i, Bluesound MINI 2i and Bluesound PULSE 2i, up to the Bluesound PULSE SOUNDBAR 2i and the Bluesound PULSE SUB. Added to this are the Bluesound PULSE 2i streaming clients and its “active” brother Bluesound POWERNODE 2i with HDMI, which in itself represents a complete compact hi-fi system, requiring only a pair of high-quality speakers. In addition, the Bluesound VAULT 2i is a proven music server that can not only access online content such as download providers, but can also rip CDs, making them available to the entire platform.
A list of those solutions that rely on BluOS from NAD would go beyond the scope of this article, because the modular design that Canadians use in many products means that more and more systems, from stereo integrated amplifiers to AV receivers, can be upgraded with the appropriate BluOS module and thus be used as part of a BluOS multiroom audio streaming system.
Bluesound Professional’s solutions are based on the expertise gathered by Bluesound and NAD, but, as described above, are dedicated solely to systems designed for custom installation solutions. These products can be found in offices, business premises, restaurants and hotels.
This is also where the partner of BluOS Monitor Audio Ltd. comes in with its first solutions based on BluOS, so up to now it has also concentrated on the area of custom installation.
The Danish loudspeaker specialist Dali Speaker A/S, on the other hand, has taken a completely independent path and has chosen BluOS as an essential feature for the development of its active loudspeaker series.
BluOS is the central streaming platform for the Dali CALLISTO C and Dali RUBICON C series.
The Dali CALLISTO C Series solutions focus on the Dali SOUND HUB and the Dali RUBICON C Series. There as well as there it acts as the central interface for the active loudspeaker systems, which it controls via radio. It offers analog as well as digital interfaces and the possibility to install a BluOS module.
As a multi-room audio streaming platform, BluOS allows 64 solutions to be used in one system, regardless of the manufacturer. Central control is provided by Controller Apps, the BluOS Control Apps, which are available for Apple iOS, Google Android, Amazon FireOS, Microsoft Windows and Apple macOS.
Since the beginning, BluOS has been developed further with a lot of dedication and new functions have been added, so now another update is available, namely BluOS 3.10, or more precisely the further service release BluOS 3.10.3.
The special feature right from the start, this new firmware version is available for really all solutions with BluOS. In contrast to other platforms, BluOS actually supports every product that has been launched based on this streaming platform so far, no products are left out. Of course, some features may no longer be available for older systems, or certain product-specific functions may be offered only for selected solutions where they are actually relevant, such as selected stereo components and AV receivers with room optimization via DIRAC, and above all systems for custom installation solutions.
The reason why we are covering this update in such detail is that according to BluOS, BluOS v.3.10.0 is a very important core update. Extensive work has been done, according to the software company, to make sure that BluOS runs smoothly on really all of the more than fifty streamers. All products, from the very first generation of Bluesound players to brand new solutions such as the NAD M33, are now running the same current BluOS operating system.
The result of these updates and optimizations is that BluOS is even more powerful and always more reliable. In addition, they have ensured that once again the foundation has been laid to ensure that the operating system can continue to be kept up to date with the latest Hi-Res audio streaming, for all older, current and future products.
Among the special features of the new update are an update of the kernel libraries, optimized, more powerful and stable WiFI drivers, better error management to prevent audio dropouts even in the worst case, optimization of the D/A converters, improvement in overall network stability, new group synchronization, and further improvements in the area of controller apps. These controller apps are of course all available in the new version 3.10.0 for Apple iOS, Google Android, Amazon FireOS, Microsoft Windows and Apple macOS.
A word about the release BluOS v3.10.3, which was released immediately after BluOS v3.10.0. This is a classic service release, which addresses a number of problems that cannot be avoided with such a comprehensive firmware update on a complex streaming platform, even with the greatest effort in quality management and extensive beta testing. For example, it is stated that the new BluOS firmware update for BluOS v3.10.3 has raised the subwoofer level in all Bluesound POWERNODE 2 products, implemented improvements in the DIRAC slot management and made minor corrections and enhancements.
In the proven way, the updates can easily be done via the Controller Apps. And of course the updates of the Controller Apps can be found either in the respective App Stores for smartphones and tablets or directly on the manufacturer’s website as download for desktop systems.
Getting to the point
With BluOS v3.10.0 or BluOS v3.10.3 an extremely important firmware update is available for all solutions based on BluOS available so far, no matter whether they are from Bluesound, NAD, Bluesound Professional, Monitor Audio Ltd. or Dali Speaker A/S. So this update affects more than 50 products. However, you will not find any new outstanding features. It is rather an update which secretly performs an essential task, namely the smooth, performance-optimized interaction of all solutions with BluOS available so far. In addition, and this is equally remarkable, this update is also intended to ensure that really every solution based on BluOS that has been available so far will also work with future products without any problems. For the customer this means that he is offered investment security for many, many years to come…