JPlay is a well-known audio-company at Alpha Audio. They have both hardware and software in their range. In the past we tested the JCAT Femto network card and usb card. Great products for those who want to put together a high-end audio PC. But as you know, you’re not there yet with just hardware. Software is also required. This time we look at the JPlay software. A separate package, as it is both a server and a player that can ’emulate’ an ASIO driver
If you think JPlay Femto is just another player of some kind… wrong. JPlay is more than just a player. It is in fact a complete ecosystem: player, driver and network server. That makes JPlay different from Foobar or Kodi, for example, where we mainly talk about a player. What we might compare it to is JRiver. It also has custom drivers and a server capability to stream to remote locations. However, JPlay claims to be the ultimate solution… A solution for the modern audiophile who really no-compromise wants to stream.
You can buy JPlay Femto for about 150 euros via the JPlay website. Once you’ve done that, it’s time for installation. During the installation of the Femto variant of JPlay, you will see that you can opt for a ‘single pc’ or ‘dual pc’ set-up. In fact, JPlay asks if you have a separate PC for the music library, or if you want the music and player on a single PC. We made a single-pc setup.
One step further, JPlay asks for the location of the music library. This is to let JPlay’s server do its job. After all, the JPlay server needs to know where the music is. If you are using a network location – think of a NAS – you need to mount the folder via a special command from PsExec. This program mounts the drive before JPlay starts. And that is necessary, because otherwise JPlay thinks the folder is unavailable.
After installation it is necessary to activate the package. This is done via an extra program in which you enter the serial code. Once activated, the package is ready to use.
JPlay does not have its own app, but can be operated with any UPnP app. The server comes up as JPlay femtoserver. The player JPlay Femto. We have used BubbleUPnP without any problems. Please note that you cannot adjust the player / software when it is playing: the settings do not open.