Windows 10 Sample and Bit Depth rate
Feb 26, 2021 at 3:03 PM Thread Starter Post #1 of 14

NWcherokee

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What is the consensus for setting sample and bit depth rate from windows 10 to an external dac? In my case, it is either the Topping E30 or Khadas Tone Board. I currently have them set to 24/192 (for no good reason really) as I don't think I hear much if any difference above the default 16/44, but I also haven't really tried either. Are there other considerations because these DACs are spec'd to go much higher, but I know nothing about any possible down/up sampling implications, if any? Total newbie so I am just looking for a 'single set it and leave it' value really if that makes any sense.
 
Feb 26, 2021 at 4:44 PM Post #3 of 14

m-i-c-k-e-y

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Install ASIO drivers of your respective DACs to access it capabilities.

Install and use Foobar 2000 (free) as media player. Configure Foobar by accessing your DACs thru ASIO.

You could find many How to's on Foobar 2000 in the internet.
 
Feb 26, 2021 at 5:48 PM Post #5 of 14

m-i-c-k-e-y

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Feb 27, 2021 at 10:23 AM Post #6 of 14

shaitan667

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Ignore the windows sample rate. Install Foobar2000 and the WASAPI plugin. That way you can bitstream to the DAC and take the windows audio system out of the equation.
 
Mar 2, 2021 at 12:10 AM Post #8 of 14

ADUHF

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Set the sample rate to what is common for your audio (most of the time 44.1 kHz)
Set bit depth to the max supported by your DAC.
If possible use media players supporting WASAPI as this allows for automatic sample rate switching.
Bit more detail: https://www.thewelltemperedcomputer.com/KB/DirectSound.htm

I am a newbie on this topic, but I think there could be some potential advantages to using a higher sampling rate than 44.1 kHz as well.

Most of my listening is via the standard YouTube platform, which apparently uses two different codecs for encoding its content, AAC at 44.1 kHz and Opus at 48 kHz. My browser (and I guess also alot of other recent browsers) seems to prefer using the newer Opus encodes though, over the older AAC format. Perhaps because they sound a little better, and maybe are also a little easier to stream.

That 48 kHz rate in the Opus codec makes perfect sense btw, because that is the rate that most video devices use. While the older 44.1 kHz standard seems to be falling increasingly to the sidelines. YouTube apparently still uses it though to ensure backward compatibility with some older browsers and devices that don't include support for the new Opus encodes. And it is also possible that other streaming platforms are still using 44.1 kHz as well. So you'll have to check the specs on those.

You can see which codec is being used for playback by your browser in the "Stats for Nerds" pop-up menu, if you right click on a YouTube video while it's playing. That brings up a display that looks like this...

NERDSTAT.jpg


The audio codec should be the second item listed on the Codecs line, encircled above. If it's using Opus, then the sampling rate is probably 48 kHz. If it's using AAC, then it's probably 44.1 kHz.

If you are uncertain about the sample rates of your content though, then maybe using an appreciably higher rate, such as 96 or 192 kHz may not be such a bad idea. Because that could possibly reduce the potential for aliasing artifacts due to conversions from the lower sampling rates. (Edit: Others with possibly better informed opinions below seem to have more doubts about this.) The same goes for the bit depth. A higher bit depth will reduce the potential for resampling errors, especially if you're using an EQ to digitally alter the volume of your content at different frequencies.

Latency could possibly be another factor though with the higher bit depths or sampling rates. So that may be a consideration as well, particularly if you're using your PC for alot of gaming. And I'm not sure what the preferred bit depths and sample rates would be for that.

I'm not familiar with Foobar2000 or WASAPI btw. If you have a decent DAC though, and those programs will bitstream at the content's native rate and bit depth to the DAC, then there may also be some advantages in that.

I was using 16/44.1 before btw. But recently switched to using 24/48 after installing some EQ software on my PC to tweak the sound of my headphones a little better. And I think I'm hearing a noticeable improvement in the sound quality when watching YouTube videos encoded with the Opus codec via my PC with the new settings, for all the reasons outlined above. 24/48 is also the highest setting supported by my audio device, which is a Samsung TV connected to the PC via HDMI.
 
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Mar 2, 2021 at 4:48 AM Post #9 of 14

Roseval

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then using an appreciably higher rate, such as 96 or 192 kHz may not be such a bad idea. Because that will reduce the potential for aliasing artifacts due to conversions from the lower sampling rates.
Observe that except in that very specific case of a NOS DAC, all DACs do up/oversampling.
No need to do this twice.
 
Mar 2, 2021 at 10:26 AM Post #10 of 14

ADUHF

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After doing some more reading, it appears I am not well-informed about some of the digital signal processes used in audio DACs. And I have edited a couple comments from my previous post as a consequence.

Observe that except in that very specific case of a NOS DAC, all DACs do up/oversampling.
No need to do this twice.

Thank you for the reply (and correction), Roseval. So does this mean that it is always better to leave the sample rate set at a lower rate compatible with the content. And to feed the signal to the DAC that way, rather than up/over-sampling it first?

And what if you do not know what the sample rate of your content is? Is it better then to take a chance on using a lower rate on your PC, which may be different than your content, or to use a higher rate (such as 96 or 192 kHz) to reduce the potential for aliasing artifacts? Is there even a clear cut "one-size-fits-all" solution like the OP wants to something like this? Or is the answer always going to come down to the specific content be used?
 
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Mar 2, 2021 at 10:41 AM Post #11 of 14

rev6

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After doing some more reading, it appears I am not well-informed about some of the digital signal processes used in audio DACs. And I have edited a couple comments from my previous post as a consequence.



Thank you for the reply (and correction), Roseval. So does this mean that it is always better to leave the sample rate set at a lower rate compatible with the content. And to feed the signal to the DAC that way, rather than upsampling it first?

And what if you do not know what the sample rate of your content is? Is it better then to take a chance on using a lower rate on your PC, which may be different than your content, or to use a higher rate (such as 96 or 192 kHz) to reduce the potential for aliasing artifacts? Is there even a clear cut "one-size-fits-all" solution, like the OP wants to something like this? Or is the answer always going to come down to the specific content be used?

When playing music/movies I'd go for WASAPI exclusive whenever possible. Otherwise set to 24/48 as that's really the standard imo. Games like Cyberpunk 2077 initially had issues with 44 for example, as most systems default to 48 afaik. Sure you can use 24/96 but I don't see the point as the default.
 
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Mar 2, 2021 at 12:05 PM Post #12 of 14

Roseval

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An obvious first is that you would love to have automatic sample rate switching but unfortunately not all apps support this and not all users appreciate the needed exclusive lock (single audio stream)

Second best is to match it manual.

And what if you do not know what the sample rate of your content is?
Bit rare IMHO
All most all audio (stand alone) is Redbook (44.1 kHz) and all audio in video 48 kHz.

In general re-sampling can be done transparent
Unfortunately, if the signal is close to 0 dBFS, the Win limiter kicks in generating some measurable distortion. So if you re-sample, apply some attenuation first
https://www.thewelltemperedcomputer.com/KB/DirectSound.htm

Last, don’t make too much of it. :beerchug:
 
Mar 9, 2021 at 6:19 PM Post #13 of 14

Luckyleo

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I had purchased the 880 600 ohm a while back, and it was such a good sounding HP that I ordered the 770 Pro. I just received them and have been listening to them for the last few hours.. I have a number HP's mostly open, and many different sound signatures. I hesitated about pulling the trigger this HP for a couple years. I'm generally not a big fan of closed backs, and I had heard that the bass was bloated. After listening for several hours I can say that I'm really impressed. Imaging is top notch and sound stage is better than any closed back under $200 has a right to be. There is definitely a bass boost, but it is controlled and not bloated at all. This will be a real go-to for me when I want something way out of my normal listening sound signature. Really like them with the OTL tube amp. Jot2 makes them sing as well! I know I'm a bit late to this party, but better late than never!
 
Mar 18, 2021 at 4:38 AM Post #14 of 14

ADUHF

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I had purchased the 880 600 ohm a while back, and it was such a good sounding HP that I ordered the 770 Pro. I just received them and have been listening to them for the last few hours.. I have a number HP's mostly open, and many different sound signatures. I hesitated about pulling the trigger this HP for a couple years. I'm generally not a big fan of closed backs, and I had heard that the bass was bloated. After listening for several hours I can say that I'm really impressed. Imaging is top notch and sound stage is better than any closed back under $200 has a right to be. There is definitely a bass boost, but it is controlled and not bloated at all. This will be a real go-to for me when I want something way out of my normal listening sound signature. Really like them with the OTL tube amp. Jot2 makes them sing as well! I know I'm a bit late to this party, but better late than never!

Welcome aboard the Beyer bandwagon!
 
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