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USB to SPDIF converters shoot-out : EMU 0404 USB vs. Musiland Monitor 01 USD vs. Teralink-x vs. M2Tech hiFace - Page 39  

post #571 of 1712
Quote:
Originally Posted by regal View Post
Just run the DTS test.
What is it?
post #572 of 1712
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by regal View Post
Just run the DTS test.
Quote:
Originally Posted by dszabi View Post
What is it?
I think the test is to read a dts file from your computer and see if your A/V receiver recognizes as a proper DTS file. If there is any resampling (like in the creative audigy sound cards), then it fails the test. It is an indirect test for bit perfectness but I am not sure it covers every possible scenario. For instance, if the drivers are limited to 96khz and you are playing 192khz ... the test can be passed at 44.1 but not at 192khz.

edit -- By the way, I never did this test because, I don't currently have at home any A/V receiver to decode the DTS signal.
post #573 of 1712
Thread Starter 

Foobar v1.0 vs Foobar v0.8.3 with the m2Tech Hiface

I downloaded yesterday the long awaited v1.0 of foobar and below are my findings.

For a long time I have preferred the older v0.8.3 to the 0.9.5.x and 0.9.6.x. Those newer 0.9.x version seems to have a flatter soundstage.
I experimented many other media players (mediamonkey, ...) and the only one that I found clearly superior to foobar 0.8.3 was cPlay. However, it is so user unfriendly that I rarely listen through it.

Well I am to have found out that the newest version of foobar is excellent sounding. Here are some of the notes I have taken :
The v1.0 removes grain in the upper frequencies in comparison with v0.8.3.
The v1.0 has the same soundstage depth as the v0.8.3 but has better imaging. Instruments seem to be more differentiated.
The amount of new details is outstanding. In very familiar classical recordings that I have listened hundreds of times, I heard new low level details (echoes, reverb, ...). But most interestingly, it didn't sound harsher but more natural.

I only listened to it around 2 hours with the m2tech hiface, so I am very curious to know if other people have tried it and if anyone can confirm what I heard.


PS: These comments are based on my listening impressions. Please let us not start yet another debate about audibility of jitter and bit perfectness of media players. Also, please read this : http://www.head-fi.org/forums/f21/do...-forum-227350/
post #574 of 1712
Quote:
Originally Posted by slim.a View Post
I downloaded yesterday the long awaited v1.0 of foobar and below are my findings.

For a long time I have preferred the older v0.8.3 to the 0.9.5.x and 0.9.6.x. Those newer 0.9.x version seems to have a flatter soundstage.
I experimented many other media players (mediamonkey, ...) and the only one that I found clearly superior to foobar 0.8.3 was cPlay. However, it is so user unfriendly that I rarely listen through it.

Well I am to have found out that the newest version of foobar is excellent sounding. Here are some of the notes I have taken :
The v1.0 removes grain in the upper frequencies in comparison with v0.8.3.
The v1.0 has the same soundstage depth as the v0.8.3 but has better imaging. Instruments seem to be more differentiated.
The amount of new details is outstanding. In very familiar classical recordings that I have listened hundreds of times, I heard new low level details (echoes, reverb, ...). But most interestingly, it didn't sound harsher but more natural.

I only listened to it around 2 hours with the m2tech hiface, so I am very curious to know if other people have tried it and if anyone can confirm what I heard.


PS: These comments are based on my listening impressions. Please let us not start yet another debate about audibility of jitter and bit perfectness of media players. Also, please read this : http://www.head-fi.org/forums/f21/do...-forum-227350/
Thanks for the head up. Didn't realise foobar2000 finally reaches v1.0.
The change log didn't say anything about sound quality difference.
I will download and try. Just when I thought I will leave foobar forever....
post #575 of 1712
I'm not sure if this has been posted, but the Teralink-X2 pics have been posted on the internet: Teralink-X2 ( 96k USB audio converter) - Windows Live

Kevin says it should be listed on his eBay site by this weekend if everything goes smoothly. It will be priced at $80.
post #576 of 1712
interesting, looks like the USB input stage for the Teradak Chameleon

Quote:
Originally Posted by Shahrose View Post
I'm not sure if this has been posted, but the Teralink-X2 pics have been posted on the internet: Teralink-X2 ( 96k USB audio converter) - Windows Live

Kevin says it should be listed on his eBay site by this weekend if everything goes smoothly. It will be priced at $80.
post #577 of 1712
since they made no changes to audio processing, this is probably just placebo, or improvements that have been made several versions ago.

Quote:
Originally Posted by slim.a View Post
I downloaded yesterday the long awaited v1.0 of foobar and below are my findings.

For a long time I have preferred the older v0.8.3 to the 0.9.5.x and 0.9.6.x. Those newer 0.9.x version seems to have a flatter soundstage.
I experimented many other media players (mediamonkey, ...) and the only one that I found clearly superior to foobar 0.8.3 was cPlay. However, it is so user unfriendly that I rarely listen through it.

Well I am to have found out that the newest version of foobar is excellent sounding. Here are some of the notes I have taken :
The v1.0 removes grain in the upper frequencies in comparison with v0.8.3.
The v1.0 has the same soundstage depth as the v0.8.3 but has better imaging. Instruments seem to be more differentiated.
The amount of new details is outstanding. In very familiar classical recordings that I have listened hundreds of times, I heard new low level details (echoes, reverb, ...). But most interestingly, it didn't sound harsher but more natural.

I only listened to it around 2 hours with the m2tech hiface, so I am very curious to know if other people have tried it and if anyone can confirm what I heard.


PS: These comments are based on my listening impressions. Please let us not start yet another debate about audibility of jitter and bit perfectness of media players. Also, please read this : http://www.head-fi.org/forums/f21/do...-forum-227350/
post #578 of 1712
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by MikeW View Post
since they made no changes to audio processing, this is probably just placebo, or improvements that have been made several versions ago.
I really don't think it is placebo. I did many hours of A/B listening with both versions (v1.0 and v0.8.3) since I first mentioned it, and the results are the same.
Even in very familiar recordings that I have listened to for hundreds of times in my system, I can hear new details and a removal of grain in the upper frequencies.
This is not a day and night difference but it is clearly audible on my reference system. I did a quick A/B trial on the Audio-gd FUN that I have just received and I wasn't able to tell reliably the difference (I am still not very familiar with the unit).

There is also another explanation. I gave up trying newer versions of foobar from 0.9.6.4. So there has been some changes since then.

Anyway, I don't really believe that they would clearly state that there was an improvement : if it is bit perfect according to programmers and many people there is nothing to improve. Either they made a change that they didn't know would change the sound quality or they made a change and they are not advertising it.
By the way, if you do some research, you will find out that many people (with high end sources) preferred v0.8.3 + otachan ASIO vs. the 0.9.x versions.

The only software I am aware of that clearly advertises its sound quality besides bit perfectness is XXHighEnd (and to a lesser extent cPlay and mediamonkey). I briefly tried xxhighend but I was never able to make it work properly (lack of ram memory maybe). The only time I was able to make it work it was with a small mp3 file and the sound quality was very good but I never spent much time with to get a reliable (and non placebo if you would like) impression.
post #579 of 1712
I think it would be useful for us to have some RMAA digital and analog loopback tests, for example using an rme or linx card for the input.

I did some a while ago when I had my hdsp9632 and found some slight differences between the rme spdif and the motherboard one. Differences were in the graphs however, and not in the numeric result data, wich was almost perfect.

However the main story, after the digital loopback, would be an analog loopback using the different spdif sources.

For example it seemed that my keces 131.1 was very sensitive to the digital sources. While i found very little differences in the digital loopback, between the dac fed with the rme and fed with the motherboard spdif, the analog quality result difference was HUGE. In the end, using the motherboard output made the DAC results terrible, while with the rme it was running as spec.

So there was definitely a difference in the digital source. So someone should use those musiland, m2tech and stuff as source and measure the results of a dac wich is source sensitive.

Subjective listening tests are worth nothing, as always I see everything and its opposite.
post #580 of 1712
Audio-GD Reference One and 19MK3 DAC are very source sensitive.
post #581 of 1712
Someone who has a good ADC should make a loopback with RMAA.

I should say, in addition, that I tried the Keces with the coaxial out of a Yamaha Motif Keyboard (wich is also a firewire soundcard), and directly connected it to Adam A7's wich as you know are good sounding speakers.

Well the result was anything but good. This is indeed just a listening test but it was clearly sounding like crap compared to his possibilities, there is no doubt.

Hope someone can do these tests.

Marco

ps: in my opinion the lack of directsound support and wasapi support is a huge handicap for the m2tech, wasapi is the best way to bit-perfect in vista/7 and directsound is obviously needed for players like MediaPlayerClassic.

Also Directsound is easily bit-perfect in vista/7 if the selected sample rate in audio control panel matches the one of the audio you're playing.
post #582 of 1712
^ why not just use KS for now?
post #583 of 1712
I ordered the Teralink-X2 a couple days ago and should receive it early next week. I'll probably be posting my impressions when I receive it.
post #584 of 1712
Again, you should excuse me, but I'd like some rmaa loop data with same dac fed with different transports.

Marco
post #585 of 1712
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by neouser View Post
Again, you should excuse me, but I'd like some rmaa loop data with same dac fed with different transports.

Marco
I was also curious to see if there is a difference between transports so I made the test 2 or 3 months ago but the test were inconclusive and surprising so I don't believe I have mentioned it before.

For my test, I used the EMU 0404 USB as a recording device. Since I found that it had very low measured distortions, I thought I could see the difference in the output of the dac19mk3 in the THD or IMD graphs.

I tried the Teralink and the Musiland and they gave me similar results. However, when I salved the digital input of the EMU to the musiland (using a cheap toslink cable) the SNR of the dac19mk3 improved by 3db but the THD and IMD graphs didn't change.

My conclusion is that trying to assess the (jitter) performance of those usb to spdif converters looking at an RMAA graph with the help of consumer grade sound card is probably pointless.
In my opinion, to make worthwile measurements, the tester should have a world class ADC with a known ultra stable clock and not just a clock that is advertised being "ultra-low jitter". To make definitve conclusions about jitter, one should use something like Audio Precision 2 ... if the ADC is inferior (in the time or frequency domain) to the DAC it is measuring the results are probably skewed.

Anyway, I have had a few e-mail exchanges recently with Kingwa (from Audio-gd) who told me that jitter measurements do not tell you the whole story about the quality of a transport. There are other parameters (transformers, clock phase noise, power pulse effect to the signal, ...) that will also impact the sound of the DAC. I highly doubt that the measurements done by RMAA will let anyone correctly assess the whole performance of a transport.
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