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Objectivists board room - Page 197

post #2941 of 3312
Quote:
Originally Posted by GuyUnder View Post

If you are running a Windows system, here are my recommendations in order:

1. Use a bit-perfect driver. WASAPI, kernel streaming, and ASIO. If you have to, use ASIO4ALL. The Windows audio mixer must be bypassed.

2. Use of a USB filter, such as the Jitterbug, iPurifier, etc. If using TOSlink, use either a glass quartz or high grade plastic core cable. If using an RCA plug SPDIF connection make sure you are using a high quality cable rated for 75 ohms.

3. Use of a dedicated audio PC with minimal noise: fanless, minimal components, SSD on external power or diskless using a NAS. Low ripple or a linear PSU. Use of an audio optimizer like Fidelizer.

 

 

Only the first item answers his question.... and even then, it doesn't really.

 

I get the suspicion from the rest of your answers that sound science isn't your most frequented forum....  

post #2942 of 3312
I assume his concern is for getting the best audio out of his system.

I post here now and then, generally for educational purposes.
post #2943 of 3312
Quote:
Originally Posted by GuyUnder View Post

1. I assume his concern is for getting the best audio out of his system.

2. I post here now and then, generally for educational purposes.

 

1. So why did you suggest spending money on items which do not improve the quality of the audio?

 

2. Try reading this forum rather than posting or, try posting questions rather than advice. You'll find that much more effective for your education, if that is your purpose!

 

post #2944 of 3312
Quote:
Originally Posted by GuyUnder View Post

If you are running a Windows system, here are my recommendations in order:

1. Use a bit-perfect driver. WASAPI, kernel streaming, and ASIO. If you have to, use ASIO4ALL. The Windows audio mixer must be bypassed.

2. Use of a USB filter, such as the Jitterbug, iPurifier, etc. If using TOSlink, use either a glass quartz or high grade plastic core cable. If using an RCA plug SPDIF connection make sure you are using a high quality cable rated for 75 ohms.

3. Use of a dedicated audio PC with minimal noise: fanless, minimal components, SSD on external power or diskless using a NAS. Low ripple or a linear PSU. Use of an audio optimizer like Fidelizer.

0.0;
post #2945 of 3312
Quote:
Originally Posted by GRUMPYOLDGUY View Post
 

 

 

Only the first item answers his question.... and even then, it doesn't really.

 

I get the suspicion from the rest of your answers that sound science isn't your most frequented forum....  

I was thinking he was joking around lol

 

You think redbook specs would be best? For both outputs? 

post #2946 of 3312
Quote:
Originally Posted by Argyris View Post

Whatever. What I'd really like is for somebody like FiiO to take a crack at the wireless amp + DAC concept. I wouldn't even mind if they made it the same form factor and relative size as my Q1 (at least in their initial offering) if they felt they couldn't offer a quality product any smaller, though the small size and ability to clip it anywhere on your clothing make the Bluewave the ideal form factor for this sort of thing, IMO.

Or, after GRUMPYOLDGUY's description of his DIY portable Chromecast Audio, how about one of those with a headphone amp added and a built in rechargeable battery? Everything else is already there smily_headphones1.gif
post #2947 of 3312
Quote:
Originally Posted by cel4145 View Post


Or, after GRUMPYOLDGUY's description of his DIY portable Chromecast Audio, how about one of those with a headphone amp added and a built in rechargeable battery? Everything else is already there smily_headphones1.gif


Considering he threw out the idea while he was ranting and literally slapped a whole functional product together on his way home from work, I'm sure creating one with a more elegant chassis isn't that hard or expensive...unless you want to make a solution with multiple processors strapped on a 10 layer PCB and charge 600 bucks.

 

R&D at its finest. :rolleyes:


Edited by U-3C - 1/11/17 at 1:59pm
post #2948 of 3312
Quote:
Originally Posted by U-3C View Post


Considering he threw out the idea while he was ranting and literally slapped a whole functional product together on his way home from work, I'm sure creating one with a more elegant chassis isn't that hard or expensive...unless you want to make a solution with multiple processors strapped on a 10 layer PCB and charge 600 bucks.

R&D at its finest. rolleyes.gif

I think someone who was more inclined than I (read: not a lazy slob) would be able to easily put something together that would be more product-like.
post #2949 of 3312
Quote:
Originally Posted by GRUMPYOLDGUY View Post

I think someone who was more inclined than I (read: not a lazy slob) would be able to easily put something together that would be more product-like.

If even a lazy person can find such a good solution, why bother spend another 565 dollars? biggrin.gif
post #2950 of 3312
All my recommendations will improve audio quality.

1. Use of a bit-perfect driver stops the Windows audio mixer from compromising the sound.

2. The use of a USB filter / isolator attenuates noise from the bus power which greatly improves DAC performance.

3. Building a dedicated audio PC with decoupled disk storage eliminates noise from moving parts and SSD power from the rails. A high grade PSU reduces power noise; a linear PSU helps eliminate leakage currents. A fully tuned Windows results in less EMI and noise from the CPU.

You don't have to spend thousands on power and transport chain products (like I have) to get very good audio from a PC. Everyone can use an ASIO driver and a $50 Jitterbug which will give anyone a level of quality about 80% of my reference chain.
post #2951 of 3312
Quote:
Originally Posted by U-3C View Post


If even a lazy person can find such a good solution, why bother spend another 565 dollars? biggrin.gif

 

Placebophile street cred.

 

Audio enthusiasts used to get kudos for doing stuff on the cheap / and or building stuff themselves.

 

Now most are just consumers focused on bling to impress each other.

post #2952 of 3312
Quote:
Originally Posted by uchihaitachi View Post

I was thinking he was joking around lol

You think redbook specs would be best? For both outputs? 

I think the best general rule of thumb is to do your best to maintain a bit perfect data path. If your source material is red book, then yes, I would use red book settings in Windows.
post #2953 of 3312
Quote:
Originally Posted by GuyUnder View Post

All my recommendations will improve audio quality.

1. Use of a bit-perfect driver stops the Windows audio mixer from compromising the sound.

 

Just set your device to the maximum sample-size/bitrate that your device+PC+OS can safely support, and you can drop SW which all it does it selecting them according to source format.

As far as computer audio libraries doing re-sampling, nowadays all such libraries have achieved a pretty high standard.

From authors of a popular player (foobar2000 - which might have interest in claiming their SW sounding better than others WRT re-sampling qualities):

 

http://www.foobar2000.org/FAQ

 

Does foobar2000 sound better than other players?

No. Most of “sound quality differences” people “hear” are placebo effect (at least with real music), as actual differences in produced sound data are below their noise floor (1 or 2 last bits in 16bit samples). foobar2000 has sound processing features such as software resampling or 24bit output on new high-end soundcards, but most of the other mainstream players are capable of doing the same by now.

 

 

Quote:
 2. The use of a USB filter / isolator attenuates noise from the bus power which greatly improves DAC performance

 

Any decent DAC already has filtering in front of the DAC power source. And for decent I don't mean $1K+.

Even a $2 LC filter, in the proper place within the DAC circuitry, can drop noise to insignificant level.

None of my DACs requires USB "purifiers", and the USB cables leading to them are not exactly short.

 

 

Quote:
 3. Building a dedicated audio PC with decoupled disk storage eliminates noise from moving parts and SSD power from the rails. A high grade PSU reduces power noise; a linear PSU helps eliminate leakage currents. A fully tuned Windows results in less EMI and noise from the CPU.

 

A few things which helps reminding:

 

  • USB is digital
  • USB packets have CRC
  • If noise (or "bad" cables :D ) mucks up a USB packet, CRC verification fails, and it gets re-transmitted
  • If re-transmission rate so high that the downstream device is let starve (according to sample-size/bitrate combo) for data, you have audio skips
    • Otherwise, if despite re-transmissions you are within the required device feeding parameters, there are no effects whatsoever in the audio reproduction
  • Audio skips are a definitely audible event, no need to guess or invoke spiritual AB tests
    • There is no soundstage compression, of female vocals souding congested, or cellos missing their vibe ... the sound just cracks
  • If you don't hear audio skips, you need no USB purifiers, beautifiers, magic software managers, or voodoo rituals
post #2954 of 3312
Quote:
Originally Posted by HotIce View Post
 

 

Just set your device to the maximum sample-size/bitrate that your device+PC+OS can safely support, and you can drop SW which all it does it selecting them according to source format.

As far as computer audio libraries doing re-sampling, nowadays all such libraries have achieved a pretty high standard.

From authors of a popular player (foobar2000 - which might have interest in claiming their SW sounding better than others WRT re-sampling qualities):

 

http://www.foobar2000.org/FAQ

 

 

 

 

Any decent DAC already has filtering in front of the DAC power source. And for decent I don't mean $1K+.

Even a $2 LC filter, in the proper place within the DAC circuitry, can drop noise to insignificant level.

None of my DACs requires USB "purifiers", and the USB cables leading to them are not exactly short.

 

 

 

A few things which helps reminding:

 

  • USB is digital
  • USB packets have CRC
  • If noise (or "bad" cables :D ) fscks up a USB packet, CRC verification fails, and it gets re-transmitted
  • If re-transmission rate so high that the downstream device is let starve (according to sample-size/bitrate combo) for data, you have audio skips
    • Otherwise, if despite re-transmissions you are within the required device feeding parameters, there are no effects whatsoever in the audio reproduction
  • Audio skips are a definitely audible event, no need to guess or invoke spiritual AB tests
    • There is no soundstage compression, of female vocals souding congested, or cellos missing their vibe ... the sound just cracks
  • If you don't hear audio skips, you need no USB purifiers, beautifiers, magic software managers, or voodoo rituals

 

The author of Foobar is wrong.

 

DACs, even little baby ones that rely on ICs for everything, do of course smooth out power supplies. However, when we are discussing noise introduced by USB, the dirty bus noise gets into the power network (rails and ground plane), and even DACs with galvanic isolation on the input (which are uncommon by itself) do not stop all of the noise. The other source of noise is the USB receiver processing USB data which it does at approximately 8 kHz. DACs heavily rely on their clocks to correct the worst jitter introduced by the USB connections, but those crystal oscillators based clock circuits are very sensitive to noise. 

 

USB data is digital, the electric impulse that carries the data is analogue.

 

USB audio streams do not perform error correction, they are real-time.

 

Poor quality cables with poor shielding, no EMI rejection, low-quality conductors, fails to conform to USB cable standards, etc, help with introducing jitter.

 

Breaks in audio occur when the stream is unintelligible and the DAC can't fix it. Jitter introduced by time errors caused by bad cables, naked USB power lines and self-noise, etc, smears the signal in a slight way that nevertheless has a large impact on sound quality. Anyone can buy a Jitterbug for $50 and see the difference for themselves. The Jitterbug simply filters the USB's signal and power lines, and that by itself will have a large impact. The Schiit Wyrd strips the USB bus power and rebuilds the signal from its own power supply and clock (essentially an audio-grade powered USB hub). Higher up the technical competence chain, you have products like the UpTone REGEN that go through further isolation and conditioning of power. Lots of people simply decouple USB from their chain entirely using products that carry audio over Ethernet (which is 100% galvaniaclly isolated from the source). If you have a PCM-only DAC, you'd be better off using SPDIF or AES (which ALSO generate self-noise on the receiver, but they operate at a much slower rate compared to USB so the problem isn't nearly as bad).

 

If I wasn't so heavy into ultra high-rate DSD, I'd probably just connect to my DAC with a high quality TOSlink cable and call it a day as it is completely immune to power noise and EMI.

post #2955 of 3312
Quote:
Originally Posted by GuyUnder View Post
 

 

 

Poor quality cables with poor shielding, no EMI rejection, low-quality conductors, fails to conform to USB cable standards, etc, help with introducing jitter.

 


But...it literally takes pennies to get a cable that conforms to USB cable standards and has proper shielding...0.0

 

If it doesn't conform to USB cable standards...why is it even being purchased...

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