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USB to SPDIF converters shoot-out : EMU 0404 USB vs. Musiland Monitor 01 USD vs. Teralink-x vs.... - Page 10  

post #136 of 1712
Quote:
Originally Posted by nick_charles View Post
oops it was 10ns not 1ns, sorry !

Coming up: Can you hear jitter? The ultimate test. (Page 3) - Equipment - HDD Audio Forum



There have been several published papers using empirical listening tests, the two most relevant are

Benjamin and Gannon(1998)
‘‘Theoretical and audible effects of jitter on digital audio quality,’’ Preprint of the 105th AES Convention, #4826 (1998)

Ashihara et al(2005)
AST : Vol. 26 (2005) , No. 1 pp.50-54

Cheers

Nick

I agree with this and believe the most important things for a computer as transport is bit-perfectness and no skips. Also I have yet to hear a 24/96 sound any better than a properly dithered down 16/44, the TerraLinkX is a great low-cost choice for a laptop, the external power is a huge plus.
post #137 of 1712
Quote:
Originally Posted by regal View Post
I agree with this and believe the most important things for a computer as transport is bit-perfectness and no skips. Also I have yet to hear a 24/96 sound any better than a properly dithered down 16/44, the TerraLinkX is a great low-cost choice for a laptop, the external power is a huge plus.
I have had no joy at all with computer audio via a laptop. I have used 4 different (decent) laptops and even my dual core 4GB RAM Lenovos give me skips and dropouts from time to time - so annoying. I have tried external USB devices and the built-in spdif outputs and they all have some blips, drives my out of my tree. I also tried numerous players - same difference, on one I do not even have an active wireless card ! - still get blips.

If there is some foolproof way to get clean digital output from a laptop and yet still leave it usable for other stuff I would really like to know

In the meantime I have a device dedicated to just giving me a digital feed and apart from when it overheats it runs perfectly, perhaps it is just me .
post #138 of 1712
Quote:
Originally Posted by nick_charles View Post
I have had no joy at all with computer audio via a laptop. I have used 4 different (decent) laptops and even my dual core 4GB RAM Lenovos give me skips and dropouts from time to time - so annoying. I have tried external USB devices and the built-in spdif outputs and they all have some blips, drives my out of my tree. I also tried numerous players - same difference, on one I do not even have an active wireless card ! - still get blips.

If there is some foolproof way to get clean digital output from a laptop and yet still leave it usable for other stuff I would really like to know

In the meantime I have a device dedicated to just giving me a digital feed and apart from when it overheats it runs perfectly, perhaps it is just me .
I would suggest a certain brand but I might be accused of being a fan-boy or company shill so I'll just quote from fmak here: Computer Audio Asylum:
Quote:
The Musiland has the most robust driver I have come across in the usb world. On only 10 buffers asio, I can surf, install programs and do whatever I like. There are no click, interruptions or hestations at all.

The only issue with this device is incompatibility with VIA cpus/boards where the spdif level goes to 153 (?) instaed of 100 and the sync lights don't come on. This needs to be reduced to below 100.

I have tried this on 5 PCs with the same good result and good sound when powered externally and the output relocked..
post #139 of 1712
Quote:
Originally Posted by jkeny View Post
I would suggest a certain brand but I might be accused of being a fan-boy or company shill so I'll just quote from fmak here: Computer Audio Asylum:
Hmm, worth a try, I have bought one from eBay, mostly for curiosity, I will report back...
post #140 of 1712
Yipee, another sale for the company - my Chinese mates will be pleased

Do let us know what you think, good or bad!

Lest I be accused of one-sidedness, here's a further quote from fmak from here: Computer Audio Asylum
Quote:
Buy a Musiland USD01 on the web for $80. This works well up to 192k Assync.

Not the best sounding compared with pci cards but much better than EMU0404 on digital output. Improves with 5V well regulated supply and break in Vd at usb input. Improves further relocked.
post #141 of 1712
Quote:
Originally Posted by nick_charles View Post
I have had no joy at all with computer audio via a laptop. I have used 4 different (decent) laptops and even my dual core 4GB RAM Lenovos give me skips and dropouts from time to time - so annoying. I have tried external USB devices and the built-in spdif outputs and they all have some blips, drives my out of my tree. I also tried numerous players - same difference, on one I do not even have an active wireless card ! - still get blips.

If there is some foolproof way to get clean digital output from a laptop and yet still leave it usable for other stuff I would really like to know

In the meantime I have a device dedicated to just giving me a digital feed and apart from when it overheats it runs perfectly, perhaps it is just me .
Really, really strange... I also use 4Gb ThinkPad, work with several documents at once, write e-mails, surf the net and can still in the same time listen to music via external DAC without any hiccups. Be it through SPDIF on port replicator, or through Musiland converter... Be it from system disk, external USB disk or even from shares on other LAN machines.

Is your computer overloaded with too much running processes? Are you using some resource devouring antivirus/firewall? I can only suggest to check/upgrade your drivers and eventually use this tool to help you pinpoint the problem.

Then again, if latencies are good (<500us) and you have tried several computers and external or built-in SPDIFs - it must be your DAC receiver.
post #142 of 1712
Quote:
Originally Posted by FauDrei View Post
Really, really strange... I also use 4Gb ThinkPad, work with several documents at once, write e-mails, surf the net and can still in the same time listen to music via external DAC without any hiccups. Be it through SPDIF on port replicator, or through Musiland converter... Be it from system disk, external USB disk or even from shares on other LAN machines.

Is your computer overloaded with too much running processes? Are you using some resource devouring antivirus/firewall? I can only suggest to check/upgrade your drivers and eventually use this tool to help you pinpoint the problem.

Then again, if latencies are good (<500us) and you have tried several computers and external or built-in SPDIFs - it must be your DAC receiver.
I did the latency checking thing with the Y710(?) it was indeed rather variable but whatever processes I killed I could not get it stable, though it can be faultless for days on end then suddenly go crappy. I even killed the antivirus and wireless processes - shrug.

I have had this experience with different external DACs as well so I do not think it is the DACs (Entech and Zero) , both of which are rock solid stable with all my other digital devices

Some innocuous looking process I am using I guess is at fault.

Oddly my Dell desktop gives me no such problems, I have never had a single blip from it into the Zero and I have all sorts of weird stuff on it like an external TV tuner which is really flaky
post #143 of 1712
slim.a,

Thank you for the review...

I have a quick question: you were saying you used hiFace with both asio4all and KS. I am a little confused as I thought a usb device would totally bypass them. I am running foobar, latest version, and I assume I would go under Preferences, Output and select the hiFace usb from there rather than asio or ks... I just want to make sure I got this right...

I have the Bryston BDA-1 dac and I can run usb to it but it is limited to 16/48 max on the usb input. Leaving the pro and cons arguments about being able to hear a difference aside, I would like to be able to feed it a native sampling rate, because I have some 24/96 flac files and I can only do that over all its inputs except the usb one.

As my sound card is a crappy Realtek which locks a certain sampling rate and will only output that particular one, my options are either to get another sound card (like a ESI Juli@) or this hiFace device.

Asio4all is also limited to 48khz rates, and KS (in my situation) still "listens" to the sound card, so I would like to totally bypass them and go usb out only.

I am obviously confused, so any input will be greatly appreciated!

Regards,
Danny
post #144 of 1712
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by xdanny View Post
slim.a,

Thank you for the review...

I have a quick question: you were saying you used hiFace with both asio4all and KS. I am a little confused as I thought a usb device would totally bypass them. I am running foobar, latest version, and I assume I would go under Preferences, Output and select the hiFace usb from there rather than asio or ks... I just want to make sure I got this right...

I have the Bryston BDA-1 dac and I can run usb to it but it is limited to 16/48 max on the usb input. Leaving the pro and cons arguments about being able to hear a difference aside, I would like to be able to feed it a native sampling rate, because I have some 24/96 flac files and I can only do that over all its inputs except the usb one.

As my sound card is a crappy Realtek which locks a certain sampling rate and will only output that particular one, my options are either to get another sound card (like a ESI Juli@) or this hiFace device.

Asio4all is also limited to 48khz rates, and KS (in my situation) still "listens" to the sound card, so I would like to totally bypass them and go usb out only.

I am obviously confused, so any input will be greatly appreciated!

Regards,
Danny
Usb to spdif converters work in foobar like any other soundcard. For each converter, you will have to choose an output DS / KS / Asio.

For the m2tech you have the choice between KS and ASIO4ALL in Preferences/output. For using the m2tech with asio4all, you have to choose it in foobar's output and then choose the m2tech in the asio4all interface. This is only a workaround as the m2tech performs best with KS.

Whether it is with the m2tech or the musiland monitor 01 usd, you can play high rez files (24/96) and avoid the 16/48 limitation on most built-in usb inputs on DACs.
post #145 of 1712
Got it, thanks again, slim.a!!
post #146 of 1712
slim,

One more question, if you don't mind: is the hiFace quiet enough to where it can be used with a hi-end system? No crackles, pops or otherwise skipping music if and when other programs run in the background? Of course within the tolerable limit, I don't mean heavy duty background video processing or anything like that, just the normal Windows stuff...
post #147 of 1712
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by xdanny View Post
slim,

One more question, if you don't mind: is the hiFace quiet enough to where it can be used with a hi-end system? No crackles, pops or otherwise skipping music if and when other programs run in the background? Of course within the tolerable limit, I don't mean heavy duty background video processing or anything like that, just the normal Windows stuff...
While there were some clicks (at moderate volume) when starting a new track with the 1.01 drivers, the 1.02 drivers I am currently using have solved those issues.

Also, even when having other programs running (even anti-virus scans), there are no crackles and pops. This is with the KS buffer set at the default value (1000ms).

Anyway, the crackles and pops seem to be less of an issue with async usb converters. As both the Musiland and m2tech don't seem to have an issue with crackles and pops.
post #148 of 1712
Quote:
Originally Posted by slim.a View Post
While there were some clicks (at moderate volume) when starting a new track with the 1.01 drivers, the 1.02 drivers I am currently using have solved those issues.

Also, even when having other programs running (even anti-virus scans), there are no crackles and pops. This is with the KS buffer set at the default value (1000ms).

Anyway, the crackles and pops seem to be less of an issue with async usb converters. As both the Musiland and m2tech don't seem to have an issue with crackles and pops.
I still have a pop when the music starts and I am using the 1.02. I must have installed it wrong or something. I am using KS with f2k of course.
post #149 of 1712
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by slim.a View Post
While there were some clicks (at moderate volume) when starting a new track with the 1.01 drivers, the 1.02 drivers I am currently using have solved those issues.

Also, even when having other programs running (even anti-virus scans), there are no crackles and pops. This is with the KS buffer set at the default value (1000ms).

Anyway, the crackles and pops seem to be less of an issue with async usb converters. As both the Musiland and m2tech don't seem to have an issue with crackles and pops.
Quote:
Originally Posted by tosehee View Post
I still have a pop when the music starts and I am using the 1.02. I must have installed it wrong or something. I am using KS with f2k of course.
It seems that the drivers of the m2tech are still at the developping stage and that there are differences depending on platforms and computers ...
By the way, I am using foobar 0.8.3 with windows xp media center.

tosehee, do you have pops every time you play a new file ? Or is it when you change the sample rate playing ?
post #150 of 1712
Quote:
Originally Posted by slim.a View Post
It seems that the drivers of the m2tech are still at the developping stage and that there are differences depending on platforms and computers ...
By the way, I am using foobar 0.8.3 with windows xp media center.

tosehee, do you have pops every time you play a new file ? Or is it when you change the sample rate playing ?
I hear this pop every time I select a song to play. If the next song plays automatically, I do not get this issue.

I am using Foobar 0.9.6.9 with Windows 7 64b
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Head-Fi.org › Forums › Equipment Forums › Dedicated Source Components › USB to SPDIF converters shoot-out : EMU 0404 USB vs. Musiland Monitor 01 USD vs. Teralink-x vs. M2Tech hiFace