Originally Posted by HeadphoneAddict
I said, "There is no reason why it wouldn't work with any desktop USB DAC that doesn't draw too much power from the CCK" so we agree there in regards to power, i.e. if the desktop USB DAC doesn't draw too much power then you don't need a powered USB hub, plain and simple. I gave my DACmini as an example.
I thought we had to use FLAC player on iPad to play 24 bit music anyway. Am I wrong? (I do recall reading somewhere that while the iPad's music player is limited to 16/48 that you can stream 24/96 music through the iPad, but not sure how
For me 24 bit it's a must have feature, in my high-end home stereo I can hear better sound vs same file at 16 bit (tested downsampling the same file or same ripped CDs vs 24/xxx downloaded album). It depends if your system is able to show big or small differences or none at all between different files resolutions.
Given high-end headphones setups achieve similar performances and for peace of mind why not starting wih best possible source=high resolution files?.
Using iPad (no other iDevice is reported working at 24 bits without downsampling) it's at least technally interesting to know how to pass bit perfect 24 bit data to the DAC.
I don't mean any 24/192 DAC/Amp sounds better than any limited to 16/44 playing CDs, for sure overall quality/design is the first thing that matters.
Hardware variables: clock quality (not any device has even 2 clocks needed for all samples), USB/opt/coax transcoder chip, reduce jitter design, analog output design, built in amp quality (Ohm/power output range), power design,...
Software variables: player and settings used, drivers (ASIO, WASAPI,....), OS and settings, streaming server settings, ripper settings,...
Anything in the chain do some work in a different way even if bits are bits, but for digital audio also "time" matter.
Someone like me is so picky to use dbpoweramp CD Ripper with ultra secure rip setting which takes more time than any built in player ripping software and has the Accuraterip check for peace of mind. I've also checked that using different softwares could output small differences even in file size (ripping or transcoding), weren't they "bits are bits"?
If you mean iPad portability in a home, I get much better sound (more details, dynamics, space, smoother rendering, bass definition...) using Logitech Media Server + iPeng (in-app purchase of player needed) than iTunes Home Sharing with stock player, the former plays FLACs too (no need to convert to ALACs) and has a much better and faster interface, check it out.
If you mean portability everywhere (BTW iPad stock player can do up to 24/384 ALACs example here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3Modabpck0Q ), we need to find a solution to bypass iPad internal storage capacity limits for those big files, with a portable storage wi-fi devices able to stream 24 bit without downsampling.
I've high hopes for the Seagate GoFlex Satellite http://www.seagate.com/external-hard-drives/portable-hard-drives/wireless/seagate-satellite/ sice I've read carefully its manual, faq and other infos. The most intersting parts are:
In the manual it's clearly stated it does not transcode (convert) files but is able to stream any files the device supports or files supported by third-party apps.
In the FAQ it's stated it has some DLNA capability (but not fully certified), AirPlay it's not yet supported, but some third-party applications are capable of streaming files from the browser interface or DLNA connection and playing that via AirPlay.
If it doesn't transcode but decode files using the built in iPad palyer it should works at least with ALAC/AIFF, if it uses the player inside its dedicated app it'll probably downsample, it's still possible to use third-party apps but I'm uncertain which and how to do it.
However, even if it's not currently possible, for sure Seagate can do a simple software update to allow 24 bit streaming with in built player.
I'm very near to buy it just to find out if it's capable right now, and I'm experimentig with iPeng and DLNA servers to check if it's generally possible to bypass LMS so to use iPeng and SGFS.
I don't think jitter is the only thing that matters, however even here http://www.benchmarkmedia.com/discuss/feedback/newsletter/2011/06/1/ipad-streams-high-resolution-audio-dac1 you can check that iPad/CCK has at least very good measures, maybe not different from other top configs for 24 bit-perfect data.
And we could bypass CCK with dedicated devices like CLAS which officially supports 24 bit for iPad (faq not manual page 7 here http://cypherlabs.com/images/pdfs/Cypher_Labs_AlgoRhythm_Solo_FAQ.pdf ).
I could add that a battery powered device has a cleaner power delivery that any noisy PC or Mac PSU, if it matter less than jitter is to be determined in each setup.
Since iPad 24 bit-perfect and portability of some sort isn't so clear and doesn't seems to get much interest everywhere, I've started a dedicated thraead to recap things that works, I'll update asap the OT ( http://www.head-fi.org/t/625493/ipad-with-24-bit-files-high-storage-capacity-portability-which-configuration-works-without-downsampling#post_8667839 ) when new configs are reported accurately or I'll discover more. Please contribute to add infos.
Edited by Thraex - 9/5/12 at 6:49am