Olive 06HD
4.6Overall Score
Price (RRP): $6499 Manufacturer: Olive

The Olive 06HD is a music server. What, you may ask, is that?

It is a device that at its core can hold lots of music and make it available over a computer network. But this unit is a great deal more than that.


This is a large and heavy unit upon which no expense – obviously – has been spared. It is chock-a-block full of audiophile components, including high-end Burr-Brown digital to analog converters, re-clocking to eliminate jitter from digital audio, and the best inputs and outputs available.

It also has a two terabyte hard disk drive on which to store all your music, tucked into eight layers of sound dampening to make sure no unwanted noise is emitted.

The unit has a CD slot on the front from which it may rip audio, plus both wired and wireless networking built in. It will talk to your computer network using either, both to supply music to other devices and to be further fed with new fodder for its hard disk. Oh, and to talk to the internet.

Remember, the unit has two terabytes on tap. This is enough for 6000 CDs with the lossless FLAC compression system ensuring identical quality to the original. If quantity is more your thing than quality (although quite why you’d then be purchasing this isn’t clear), then you could go MP3 or AAC at 128kbps, and bump this up to perhaps 30,000 CDs!

You can plug a headphone into the front of the unit (and this incorporates a proper headphone amplifier), but generally you will use either a direct analog or digital audio connection for output to a sound system, or use it to feed your network-based audio system.

Obviously, unless you have some pretty esoteric audio equipment, the best sound will come from using the unit’s own analog outputs, given the high quality of its components.