Originally Posted by KBGolfRunner
I'm new to the Head-Fi Community and have recently bought an entry-level setup - Garage1217 Project Starlight, NuForce uDac 2, ZMF Modified Fostex's with XLR input. I have my old CD's downloaded to a 2 TB Western Digital My Passport for Mac in Apple Lossless format, and I have MacBook Pro Retina.
Here are my questions and thanks SO MUCH for your help. Please answer one, two, or all of them.
Does playing music through my External Hard Drive make a difference? (I could move music to my SSD Hard Drive, but it's only 256 Gigs)
It should make no difference whatsoever, as long as your USB/Firewire drive and connection are operating okay you should be fine, you are only using the firewire/usb to get data and not at a very challenging rate , where did you get this idea from ?
Should I put the Audio MIDI Setup on 24bit/96hz even though I'm playing 16bit/44.1hz? I have one 24bit/44.1hz and one 24/96 from HD Tracks?
I find the music separates better and is cleaner on the 24/96hz, but the 16/44 for my Apple Lossless songs (16/44.1)
There is a 99% probability that this difference is a product of your imagination/expectation bias, I'm not being rude, we see this a lot here. Unless the software/hardware operates badly at a given rate there really should be no audible difference, certainly you are gaining zero extra audio information.
Is DAC Burn In Time really true?
To date there is zero credible evidence to support DAC burn-in
Will my system sound better if I get a Audioengine D1 with Optical Input and run an Optical Out from my computer?
According to the specs the D1 is rather better in terms of noise (SNR 110db, vs 91db) whether you will be able to detect the difference is anybody's guess
When I'm downloading an album from HDTracks should I turn off my other applications?
No, in the unlikely event that something you are doing interferes with the download the Internet protocol stack has error correction and any lost/corrupted packets will be retransmitted until they are correctly acknowledged, unless the host site is using UDMA (very unlikely) in which case it is a crap-shoot.
I have a Audio Technica AT-LP60 Turntable. Can I make 24bit/96hz that will sound better than my Apple Lossless on my current system? Will I need Original Mastered Recordings? Really dum question here - Will the slight cracking sound on my older albums come through as much after I record them into my computer? I'm thinking I need to get a turntable with a USB - Is that correct?
There is no point in making 24/96 recordings from vinyl - the dynamic range of vinyl is at best about 75 - 80 db on pristine vinyl on a high quality TT with perfectly aligned and high quality cartridge you might just get that, trust me your TT will not manage anything anywhere remotely near that so you do not need to worry about 24 bits.
Mastering for CD and vinyl are frequently different so comparing any LP rip vs the CD rip may not be meaningful, even if the mastering is identical and assuming equally competent LP/CD mastering the LP rip cannot be superior due to the limitations of the vinyl medium
If you are serious about vinyl rips a better bet would be to get a capture device and a phono stage that outputs a line level signal. A phono stage will cost you about $110 unless you have an old Receiver/Amplifier lying around, a capture device could be anywhere from $30 (Behringer UCA222) - $300. The USB turntables tend to be of only moderate technical quality.
Can I download a Music DVD in 24/96? I have my Music DVD's on quicktime recorded through Handbrake right now?
If I get these answered I will be "complete" and will no longer be a Head-Fi Addict!!! I doubt this is true..I have a feeling it keeps going to different levels, etc.
Thanks for reading this far,