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HRT Music Streamer II

post #1 of 15
Thread Starter 

Just bought a HRT Music Streamer II, and can't find much info/reviews on it.

 

Being new to DAC's, I can't figure out what 24/96 capability means, and what the different numbers on the DAC are for?

See pic below, what are those numbers (next to the LED's), and do i need to set/change them? How would I do that?

 

Thanks.

3119_rgsg.bmp

post #2 of 15
Here is the manual

Contact info:
www.hirestech.com • sales@hirestec.com • +323-967-7447

They are the best ones to help you.
post #3 of 15
Thread Starter 

Thanks. But I've read the manual and it doesn't help much.

 

After a bit more research, I think I get it.

I understand what 24/96 is, but do I need to change anything on the HRT Music Streamer, or just change my laptops capabilities to play 24/96? Seems like I just change the laptop settings, and then plug-and-play the HRT. Is this correct?

 

This article seems to explain it:

http://www.macworld.com/article/1160651/how_to_find_and_play_high_resolution_audio_on_the_mac.html

post #4 of 15
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by brunk View Post

Here is the manual
Contact info:
www.hirestech.com • sales@hirestec.com • +323-967-7447
They are the best ones to help you.


thanks for the info though

post #5 of 15

You don't have to change anything with the HRT Music Streamer; in fact, I don't think you can anyway.

 

I may confuse/misspeak on some of the terminology here, but I have the understanding to answer your question. Those lights just tell you which sampling rate your USB DAC has latched onto. You have no doubt seen things such as 16/44.1, 16/48, 24/96, etc. so far. The first number, I believe, is the bit depth, and the second number is the sampling rate (in kHz).

 

If all of your music files are CD quality (16/44.1), then I wouldn't worry about this too much. But if you have any 24/96, etc. files at all, you will need to make sure that your laptop is properly configured to be able to play up to 24/96. HRT has the information about this on their website, you've probably already seen it, but assuming you are running Windows 7 you will need to right click the volume icon in your system tray, go to Playback Devices, select your DAC/make it default, configure and set the Default Format to 24/96 under the Advanced Tab of Properties. There may be one or two other steps that HRT mentions in their support documentation; just follow their guide. This is just the gist.

 

Also, you may need to tweak your music player's settings to allow 24/96 playback. In Foobar2000, you have to go into Preferences menu and adjust two small settings (IIRC, I believe one is under Playback and one is under Advanced). Ask bowei006 for help if you can't find it. I recently switched to MusicBee as my music player, though, because the HRT Music Streamer was conflicting with Foobar's WASAPI plugin and producing this "clicking" sound during playback. Some users have reported reducing their buffer to 50ms on Foobar to fix this problem; I just switched to MusicBee and everything seems to be working ok. smily_headphones1.gif

 

 

Hope that helps and that you enjoy your new gear.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bee inthe Attic View Post

Thanks. But I've read the manual and it doesn't help much.

 

After a bit more research, I think I get it.

I understand what 24/96 is, but do I need to change anything on the HRT Music Streamer, or just change my laptops capabilities to play 24/96? Seems like I just change the laptop settings, and then plug-and-play the HRT. Is this correct?

 

This article seems to explain it:

http://www.macworld.com/article/1160651/how_to_find_and_play_high_resolution_audio_on_the_mac.html

post #6 of 15

Yup - easy in Win7 - get into Speakers Properties -> Advanced and you should have a dropdown for 'Default format'

 

16 bit, 44100 Hz (CD Quality)

..

..

24 bit, 96000 Hz (Studio Quality)

 

When you make the change, you should see the appropriate light on your MSII - works for me. I previously had a DAC capable of 24/192, but my music sounded thin and artificial - much prefer the HRT. Kevin knows his stuff. 

post #7 of 15
Thread Starter 

thanks for the replies.

 

i'm using VLC on my MacbookPro, and changed the settings for the Music Streamer and my Fiio E10 to 24/96 (not sure if any of my music runs 24/96 though).

enjoying the Music streamer quite a bit.


Edited by Bee inthe Attic - 6/11/12 at 11:43pm
post #8 of 15

If you have a decent internet connection, and solid monthly bandwidth allowance, HDTracks will give you a free 24/96 download 'sampler' from their classical catalog. 

post #9 of 15

I don't know if anyone will see this, but does anyone else find the HRT MSII kind of dark or almost too warm? I must be hearing things.

It's a perfect combination with my Headroom Micro Amp, but when I connect it to the HRT MSII it seems to muddy up the sound of my Koss Pro DJ 100, Sextett and HD-598.

It's NOT the Micro Amp because I can switch sources and it's fine.

 

Has anyone else found the HRT picky with USB ports? It seems severely degraded in sound from my laptop USB ports. I actually had to use a powered USB port!

On my desktop I swear I'm getting an improvement with a powered usb port. It's a very recent custom built computer, so the USB ports should be able to output enough power right?

 

The bass isn't as bloated with my DJ100 when I use the HRT with a powered USB port. I hope this is what was going on. Probably not though.

 

I love this DAC, but it just makes my DJ100 sound like junk. Same with the HD-598.

post #10 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by tdockweiler View Post

Has anyone else found the HRT picky with USB ports? It seems severely degraded in sound from my laptop USB ports. I actually had to use a powered USB port!

On my desktop I swear I'm getting an improvement with a powered usb port. It's a very recent custom built computer, so the USB ports should be able to output enough power right.

 

I  had the same experience. Plugging Streamer II into powered hub made audible difference in SQ. 

post #11 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by tdockweiler View Post

I don't know if anyone will see this, but does anyone else find the HRT MSII kind of dark or almost too warm? I must be hearing things.

It's a perfect combination with my Headroom Micro Amp, but when I connect it to the HRT MSII it seems to muddy up the sound of my Koss Pro DJ 100, Sextett and HD-598.

It's NOT the Micro Amp because I can switch sources and it's fine.

 

Has anyone else found the HRT picky with USB ports? It seems severely degraded in sound from my laptop USB ports. I actually had to use a powered USB port!

On my desktop I swear I'm getting an improvement with a powered usb port. It's a very recent custom built computer, so the USB ports should be able to output enough power right?

 

The bass isn't as bloated with my DJ100 when I use the HRT with a powered USB port. I hope this is what was going on. Probably not though.

 

I love this DAC, but it just makes my DJ100 sound like junk. Same with the HD-598.

 

It does need a powered USB port since that's where it gets its power (notice there's no AC adapter) so it would make sense that the stability of the port's power could effect it. I haven't had any problems and I'd imagine most USB ports are fine. It only needs 250mA and USB ports provide 500mA. Lookin4Treble's recommendation to use a powered hub if you are having any of those problems is a good idea.

 

I haven't noticed the HRT MSII sounding warm. To me it sounds pretty much the same as the onboard Realtek ALC888 -> Klipsch ProMedia 2.1 headphone jack setup I was using previously but when I use ASIO4ALL with the MSII it seems to provide slightly better resolution and air. That and my headphones are getting plenty of power now that I've added the Lake People G109 so bass response has improved but I haven't noticed a warmth/darkness specific to the MSII. I highly recommend trying ASIO though if you're on Windows. I was surprised to find the SQ superior to Windows DirectSound despite some stuff I found on the internet that said I wouldn't notice a difference.

post #12 of 15

I should clarify.. I suspect the SQ from the MSII is superior to my onboard sound but nothing jumped out at me right away. I haven't done much A/B testing though, I should probably do that. Through ASIO its much better than the onboard sound.

 

I would say that the MSII sounds pretty flat to me. The ProMedia 2.1's powered headphone jack colors the mids, in a bad way IMO, but that's regardless of the source. The MSII -> G109 sounds flat to me. I'll know more as I pick up a couple more amps & DACs to contrast with.


Edited by devhen - 10/8/12 at 5:03pm
post #13 of 15

My MSII  is being delivered today.  Just want to be 100% sure on one point.

 

All of my music is 16/44.1 since I've ripped it all directly from my CDs.  Regardless, can I still set my audio settings in Windows and Foobar to 24/96 or will this degrade my sound in some way?

 

I could probably just set everything to 16/44.1 and forget it, but who knows if I might get something from HDTracks, etc. one of these days.

post #14 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by skyline315 View Post

My MSII  is being delivered today.  Just want to be 100% sure on one point.

 

All of my music is 16/44.1 since I've ripped it all directly from my CDs.  Regardless, can I still set my audio settings in Windows and Foobar to 24/96 or will this degrade my sound in some way?

 

I could probably just set everything to 16/44.1 and forget it, but who knows if I might get something from HDTracks, etc. one of these days.

 

I haven't noticed any difference setting the MSII to 24/96 or any of the other settings. You should be fine doing that.


You can use ASIO which will set the MSII to the bit depth and sample rate of whatever song is currently playing. However, I had to check the 'Always resample 44.2kHz <-> 48kHz' option to get it to stop upsampling my 44.1kHz songs to 48kHz.

post #15 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by devhen View Post

 

I haven't noticed any difference setting the MSII to 24/96 or any of the other settings. You should be fine doing that.


You can use ASIO which will set the MSII to the bit depth and sample rate of whatever song is currently playing. However, I had to check the 'Always resample 44.2kHz <-> 48kHz' option to get it to stop upsampling my 44.1kHz songs to 48kHz.

 

Thanks.

 

I'm actually using WASAPI on Foobar2k, so I'll set that to 24 bit and see how it goes.

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