or Connect
Head-Fi.org › Forums › Equipment Forums › Computer Audio › Obtained desired dac/amp/headphone chain, am CLUELESS about sound settings, audio players, bit-perfect playback, etc. Please help!
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Obtained desired dac/amp/headphone chain, am CLUELESS about sound settings, audio players, bit-perfect playback, etc. Please help!

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 

I have an Audeze LCD-2.2 that I'm running with a fully balanced Mjolnir/Gungnir stack (usb 2.0), using iTunes, (mostly 256/320 files, a few 96/24) with Windows 7 (AMD/Realtek). As good as the sound is with this setup, I feel like I'm still losing out on significant SQ because I am largely uninformed about sound settings, better audio players, and how it all comes into play with the amp/dac. I have a few questions, I hope you can help.

 

1. Does using my DAC bypass the windows mixer, and if not, would I manually have to change the sample rate and bit depth in advanced sound properties for every different type of file I play on itunes to avoid resampling?

 

2. In the settings, there is a shared mode and an exclusive mode. Does checking the exclusive mode option boxes allow the dac to "take exclusive control of this device?"

 

3. I've read a little about audio players, and that itunes playback combined with windows sound settings is less than optimal. All I have are ALAC files, so what is a quality, easy-to-use player to use, and would I have to transfer all my files to the player?

 

4. What would be the optimal settings for said player?

 

5. Is it possible to obtain bit-perfect audio with windows 7, and if not, what is the best way to reduce unnecessary resampling?

 

I know I'm probably missing a lot. Your help is greatly appreciated, and if anything needs to be added, please do so. Thanks!

post #2 of 16
Quote:
 5. Is it possible to obtain bit-perfect audio with windows 7, and if not, what is the best way to reduce unnecessary resampling?

I think with asio and wasapi, yes . 

 

Quote:
 2. In the settings, there is a shared mode and an exclusive mode. Does checking the exclusive mode option boxes allow the dac to "take exclusive control of this device?"

When i listen to music with wasapi and those settings enabled, the audio player would take control in a way that if you were to go on YouTube while listening to music, the only audio you will hear is your music. Until you stop the music/close the player. 

 

Quote:
 3. I've read a little about audio players, and that itunes playback combined with windows sound settings is less than optimal. All I have are ALAC files, so what is a quality, easy-to-use player to use, and would I have to transfer all my files to the player?

i use foosbar2000 and jriver media center. 

post #3 of 16
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by imeem View Post
 

I think with asio and wasapi, yes . 

 

When i listen to music with wasapi and those settings enabled, the audio player would take control in a way that if you were to go on YouTube while listening to music, the only audio you will hear is your music. Until you stop the music/close the player. 

 

i use foosbar2000 and jriver media center. 

 

Thanks for your response. It raised a couple of other questions.

 

I downloaded foobar and am wondering if wasapi/asio are synonymous with foobar, or are they located elsewhere?

 

Also, I noticed that with foobar, there are numerous files that are missing, and some added from the "sample music" file. Ideally, what I'd like is for all of my itunes files to be on foobar. How do I fix this?

 

Thanks.

post #4 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by the8o88y View Post
 

 

Thanks for your response. It raised a couple of other questions.

 

I downloaded foobar and am wondering if wasapi/asio are synonymous with foobar, or are they located elsewhere?

 

Also, I noticed that with foobar, there are numerous files that are missing, and some added from the "sample music" file. Ideally, what I'd like is for all of my itunes files to be on foobar. How do I fix this?

 

Thanks.

To get asio to work with foosbar, you would need an ASIO driver for your onboard soundcard and the ASIO component from here. You can try wasapi by downloading the component here.

 

Also, go to preferences/configure and under Media Library, add your music folders. 


Edited by imeem - 11/30/13 at 9:07pm
post #5 of 16
Thread Starter 

Okay. So if I download the ASIO driver, would I then download both asio AND wasapi components, or one or the other?

post #6 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by the8o88y View Post
 

Okay. So if I download the ASIO driver, would I then download both asio AND wasapi components, or one or the other?

you can download both. But u can't use both at the same time. I suggest you try wasapi first because it requires 1 less thing to download. 

 

Once you did that, go to output in foosbar settings and change your device to Asio or wasapi, depending on which one you install. if you do use wasapi, turn down the volume a bit because form my experience, it is louder. if using wasapi, pick Event, unless you are having issues then use push 


Edited by imeem - 11/30/13 at 9:58pm
post #7 of 16
Thread Starter 

I downloaded wasapi and it is now listed under installed components on the foobar preferences. Is there anything else that needs to be done, or is everything taken care of upon playback?

post #8 of 16

did u set ur output in foosbar to wasapi event or push?

 

http://www.solostereo.it/wp-content/uploads/2010/11/foobar-preferenze-output-wasapi.png


Edited by imeem - 12/1/13 at 4:27am
post #9 of 16
Thread Starter 
I have six options. 3 for event and 3 for push. Each 3 function for my dac or pc speakers. Do I need to do event or push?
post #10 of 16

Event

post #11 of 16
Thread Starter 

I set the "3 Schiit USB Audio Device" to WASAPI event and now I'm hearing clipping in the audio that I'd never heard before. Also, should I check "dithering?"

post #12 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by the8o88y View Post
 

I set the "3 Schiit USB Audio Device" to WASAPI event and now I'm hearing clipping in the audio that I'd never heard before. Also, should I check "dithering?"

 

try push then. 

 

Dither:

Quote:
 

This checkbox controls whether to add dither when playing audio that's encoded at a higher bit depth than the chosen output format.

Dither is quiet broadband noise which is added in a manner intended to mask quantization noise, which is the distortion which is sometimes audible when playing digital audio at a lower bit depth than the original. By exploiting a feature of human hearing—the ability to distinguish signal from background noise—dither preserves the higher bit-depth signal within the confines of the lower bit-depth format. This gives the signal greater dynamic range than the lower bit depth allows, and can be perceived as improved, smoother sound quality, but it always comes at the price of added background noise—which, when audible, sounds like tape hiss. However, dither can be "shaped" to make it avoid lower frequencies, making it less audible to humans.

Dither uses extra CPU power, and generally isn't necessary. The signal in most recorded audio is well within the 96 dB limit of 16-bit, and the distortion introduced in 24-to-16-bit conversion is so quiet as to almost always be masked by the signal, at least for human hearing. Nevertheless, if your soundcard can only handle a maximum of 16-bit input, but you tend to play, at loud volume, 24-bit audio files with very quiet sections that have no background noise, then you may want to enable dither, because it can make those extreme quietest parts of the audio audible, with the addition of hiss.

For a dramatic demonstration of the effect of dither, set the output format to 8-bit (if your soundcard supports it), and play an ordinary 16-bit audio file both with and without dither. The version with dither will have a fair amount of extra noise, but it will be substantially less fuzzy/gritty than the version without. This is an exaggerated demonstration, because for the average human listener, the distortion that occurs when reducing the depth to 8-bit is far more noticeable than that which occurs when down-converting to 16 or 24 bit.

post #13 of 16

Can anybody answer number one?  I have a problem with that one.

 

Thank you.

post #14 of 16

If you're using asio or wasapi it will bypass windows mixer.

Either way I personally doubt you'll notice a difference.

post #15 of 16
Quote:

Originally Posted by the8o88y View Post


3. I've read a little about audio players, and that itunes playback combined with windows sound settings is less than optimal. All I have are ALAC files, so what is a quality, easy-to-use player to use, and would I have to transfer all my files to the player?

 

 

If you have Apple devices (given all your music are ALAC), you're out of luck - you'll have to sell those devices first (or totally not use them) before you can use another player. iTunes even if assigned a specific folder will troll through the entire system (even other HDD's), find music files, and declare ownership of them such that your other music player will start losing them from its library. A rescan won't work since iTunes is very vigilant about being the overly-attached music player/sync software. On my laptop, it even does that to FLAC files. I'm listening to MediaMonkey after the iTunes 11 update* and suddenly the audio stopped. I looked at Media Monkey, and I can see each tracking going from black to faded grey like I'm in a movie and some guy was hacking and deleting my files while all I can do is watch it happen.  I manually set it to use just one folder, no dice; I then reinstalled it and set it up before doing anything else, didn't fix anything; I deleted and set its folder and put some dummy mp3 files in it, then the hacker movie scene happened again; deleted it for the last time and everything went back to normal. I then installed iTunes on my desktop, since I use that almost exclusively for games, with only a back-up of my audio and video files in the second HDD and VLC since I watch documentaries on it. Guess what - I opened VLC and hacker movie scene happened within minutes, with audio disappearing one by one.

 

Damned overly attached music player - claims file association with FLAC just so they looked like music files, but it can't even play them.

 

 

 

 

 

 

*since I was gifted an iPad, and after updating to iOS7 to get USB Audio back, I can't use any previous iTunes versions anymore; if I didn't get this as a gift and if Mad was available without regional restrictions on Android, I'd trade this for a 7" Samsung. What sucks is if I get rid of it Mom will think I'm an ingrate, just a level above those idiots whining about getting the wrong color iPhone (which will be kept in a damned case anyway)


Edited by ProtegeManiac - 1/13/14 at 8:28am
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Computer Audio
Head-Fi.org › Forums › Equipment Forums › Computer Audio › Obtained desired dac/amp/headphone chain, am CLUELESS about sound settings, audio players, bit-perfect playback, etc. Please help!