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iFi Audio Nano iDSD discussion + impression - Page 20

post #286 of 1753

I must report that the iDSD did not work for me.

 

I have a very new computer. I have a Lenovo A730 desktop all-in-one PC running Windows 8.1.

 

My Lenovo computer only has USB 3.0 ports. It does not have any USB 2.0 ports because it is a very new computer.

 

I bought the iDSD and installed the drivers as per iFi's website, but it never worked correctly for me.

 

It would successfully play files up to 44.1 kHz / 16 bit using Foobar 2000 as my music player. I have lots of experience with Foobar 2000.

 

It would not play anything over 44.1 kHz / 16 bit. Anything above that was distorted and didn't work correctly. Windows 8.1 reported errors with the driver. It would not play any test tones over 44.1 kHz / 16 bit using the Windows Control Panel.

 

I am not trying to slam the product in any way. It was beautifully made and well packaged. However, I had to return it, because I could not get it to function correctly with my very recent PC running Windows 8.1 and with USB 3.0 ports only, and I suspect the driver was the problem. Contrary to popular belief, I have found Windows 8.1 to be fantastic, so I certainly wasn't going to change my operating system in an effort to get the iDSD to work.

 

Those were my experiences and here is a picture of my Lenovo A730 computer.

 


Edited by StratocasterMan - 2/22/14 at 2:00am
post #287 of 1753

USB 3.0 and USB 2.0 - technical background and Windows workaround.

 

Some background information to shed light on this subject:
- USB docking ports are not all identical as they utilise different chipsets from different manufacturers.
- USB audio modules have a hardware+software to 'communicate' with these USB ports.

 

Computer audio is dynamic so we can only test to the very latest and if a new change comes along, we like any other manufacturer, will follow-suit. We try our absolute utmost to stay abreast but new changes/updates always occur. This is the ever-changing nature of computer audio.

 

A sizeable number of iDSDs have been shipped. The Firmware in all of them is based upon the official USB Specifications. We have tested this with a number of computers, but it is impossible for us to test with every model and make. Thus far, the USB 3.0 issue is comparably infrequent - for some of the newest Windows PCs and the latest MBPs. 

 

We have identified firmware changes that should overcome all currently documented USB 3.0 issues, however the changes needed are far-reaching (almost a complete software re-write). iFi's in-house programming must take all the time it needs but rest assured that we are pulling out all the stops to make the solution available as soon as possible.

 

The Intel (and others) USB 3.0 implementations have well-documented, substantial issues, which depend also on implementation in the Computer and driver software. Hence, this is why the USB3.0 issue works with some USB3.0 ports and not with others. These issues with USB 3.0 for both Windows and Mac are widely discussed, but usually relate to external HDDs or USB memory sticks. 

 

The underlying issues are with hardware (USB controller chips) and Software drivers not conforming to the official USB 3.0 Specification.

 

iFi workaround for new Windows Computers with USB 3.0 issue

(Please follow this link and the instructions):

http://social.technet.microsoft.com/Forums/windows/en-US/e43de6f5-4ad5-4f09-8021-92aefb00480d/windows-8-usb-30-problems?forum=w8itproinstall

 

You can see a screenshot of an example for setting this in the BIOS here:

http://i.stack.imgur.com/Zao1A.jpg

 

Please refer to your computer's manual for details on how to access the BIOS setting screen.

 

We are examining workarounds for Mac...

 

Updates will also be found here:

https://www.facebook.com/iFiAudio

 

If you are one of the few whose USB3.0 port is not okay, iFi really does appreciate your endeavours.

 

Anyone who cannot use the iDSD with their standard computer setup and does not wish to wait for the update, should discuss a return with their retailer - we formally apologise for any inconvenience caused.

 

Last but not least, those who wish to be notified to test the new firmware as soon as it is ready, drop us a PM or email: tech@ifi-audio.com

 

We thank you in advance

post #288 of 1753
I have managed to overcome issues on my laptop. As it occurred ports that I was previously trying were USB 3.0 ports. Fortunately this laptop has also one USB 2.0 port. As soon as I learned about that fact I tried iDSD under Linux and Windows 8 on that laptop, and must say it all just works. Under Linux it even works better than on my desktop! I was actually able to route output to two devices, iDSD and built-in optical, simultaneously. Here's a screen-shot for ones who are interested:
post #289 of 1753

Thats pretty cool koolas - I have not messed with Linux - that may be my next project. The computer I'm using to type this is an old Vista HP that is running an evaluation copy of 8.1. I keeps restarting after 1 hour of use because they want me to buy the copy. -

 

Question for iFi - Will the iDSD benefit from the iPurifier, or does it already have some of that filtering built in. I'm toying with the idea of buying another USB cable (short) one or buying the iPurifier. - Thanks much!

post #290 of 1753
Quote:
Originally Posted by earwaxxer View Post
 

Thats pretty cool koolas - I have not messed with Linux - that may be my next project. The computer I'm using to type this is an old Vista HP that is running an evaluation copy of 8.1. I keeps restarting after 1 hour of use because they want me to buy the copy. -

 

Question for iFi - Will the iDSD benefit from the iPurifier, or does it already have some of that filtering built in. I'm toying with the idea of buying another USB cable (short) one or buying the iPurifier. - Thanks much!

 

 

Yes.it benefits the iDSD.

 

The Re-Balancing and noise filtering of the USB Signal works for all USB DAC's including the iDSD.

 

cheers

post #291 of 1753

Worth trying.... I got a USB 'adapter' kit from Radio Crap. It has some USB A to B etc in the kit. I used that with the iDSD and the sound was quite a bit different vs. the included short USB cable that ships with the unit. That doesnt prove much, but for the price of the adapter it was interesting. I had noticed a smaller improvement with my uLink from Wyrd4snd. This is pretty big. I have to listen more to figure out how exactly its different, but initially at least the sound is 'bigger and bolder', almost like the difference between RCA and Balanced.

post #292 of 1753
Quote:
Originally Posted by earwaxxer View Post

Worth trying.... I got a USB 'adapter' kit from Radio Crap. It has some USB A to B etc in the kit. I used that with the iDSD and the sound was quite a bit different vs. the included short USB cable that ships with the unit. That doesnt prove much, but for the price of the adapter it was interesting. I had noticed a smaller improvement with my uLink from Wyrd4snd. This is pretty big. I have to listen more to figure out how exactly its different, but initially at least the sound is 'bigger and bolder', almost like the difference between RCA and Balanced.

Can you give us a link to the adapter?

Maybe I will grab one when I get my CCK (anyone have recs for these? Gotta get my iPhone 4 sorted).

Because YEAH. Got an iDSD today. A demo unit at a great price!
post #293 of 1753
Quote:
Originally Posted by Roscoeiii View Post


Can you give us a link to the adapter?

Maybe I will grab one when I get my CCK (anyone have recs for these? Gotta get my iPhone 4 sorted).

Because YEAH. Got an iDSD today. A demo unit at a great price!


I used some thing like this:

http://www.radioshack.com/product/index.jsp?productId=26702546&numProdsPerPage=60

I went into radio shack to buy it. It came with a bunch of adapters like this one. I put my laptop on the floor next to my system so I dont need a cable. I figured getting rid of the cable all together had to be a good thing, and it appears from my listening that it is. I have not been able to find an 'adapter' like this offered from the high end cable makers. Let me know if you find one. - Also - like to hear impressions of the iDSD!

post #294 of 1753
Quote:
Originally Posted by earwaxxer View Post
 


I used some thing like this:

http://www.radioshack.com/product/index.jsp?productId=26702546&numProdsPerPage=60

I went into radio shack to buy it. It came with a bunch of adapters like this one. I put my laptop on the floor next to my system so I dont need a cable. I figured getting rid of the cable all together had to be a good thing, and it appears from my listening that it is. I have not been able to find an 'adapter' like this offered from the high end cable makers. Let me know if you find one. - Also - like to hear impressions of the iDSD!

 

I like it, remove the cable from the equation.  :)  You're right, it's hard to find male A to male B adapters like that.  Most are the wrong gender, i.e. m-f, f-m, f-f.  Or, they have mini/micro B.  However, I did manage to find one and only one on Amazon.  Not from a high end company but looks decent:

 

http://www.amazon.com/HDE%C2%AE-USB-Type-Male-Adapter/dp/B002B9AR8I

post #295 of 1753
You just need USB OTG cable. You will surely find OTG cable on Amazon or ebay. The only problem with OTG cable is that you will have to plug regular USB A to B cable (one provided with iDSD is fine) into its A-female plug, and that means plug dangling, which is kind of not nice.

Question to iFi: Can you confirm that USB OTG cable works with Android devices?
post #296 of 1753
Quote:
Originally Posted by earwaxxer View Post
 

. Let me know if you find one. - Also - like to hear impressions of the iDSD!

 

Thanks! Will do. I am looking forward to hearing how this stands up to the DPSeaker Dual Core in my main rig. Easy to level match these two, since both have built in volume control. 

 

Exciting stuff. So far, so so good with the iDSD.

post #297 of 1753

Other iDSD users, how quiet is the iDSD for y'all with headphones? I am using Shure 846s, which are quite low impedance, and get a hiss once the iDSD is plugged into my laptop's USB port and the device is turned on to even the lowest volume on the dial. 

post #298 of 1753
Quote:
Originally Posted by Roscoeiii View Post
 

Other iDSD users, how quiet is the iDSD for y'all with headphones? I am using Shure 846s, which are quite low impedance, and get a hiss once the iDSD is plugged into my laptop's USB port and the device is turned on to even the lowest volume on the dial. 

pretty quiet for me. haven't used my IEMs with them yet - i'll try that later. but i just did a quick check with the Alpha Dogs plugged directly in to them. granted, the ADs are not the easiest to drive, but with the iDSD on full volume, it's 98% black. i say 98% only because i thought i heard a tad bit of something at full volume, but it was ever so slight, if at all.

post #299 of 1753
Quote:
Originally Posted by kugino View Post
 

pretty quiet for me. haven't used my IEMs with them yet - i'll try that later. but i just did a quick check with the Alpha Dogs plugged directly in to them. granted, the ADs are not the easiest to drive, but with the iDSD on full volume, it's 98% black. i say 98% only because i thought i heard a tad bit of something at full volume, but it was ever so slight, if at all.

 

Thanks. That's a good reference point, since I have a pair of Mad Dogs at work. I will try the iDSD with them tomorrow. And I will see if I hear this when pairing the iDSD with my iBasso amp. 

post #300 of 1753

See my comments: here.  Note that the volume knob is *very* sensitive.  I usually keep it minimum (ie just above the turning on level) before slooowly turning it up.  The max I can go is around the 10 o'clock mark.  With the my setup, the silence is inky black except when jumping between tracks or within a track.  I think it is the iUSB doing the isolation as my laptop is rather noisy.  On a generic Samsung ear piece, if I plug that in the laptop directly, I can even hear the HDD seeking and accessing data.


Edited by Watcherq - 3/3/14 at 12:27am
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