Audio Processing in Vista Explained - Page 33 - AVS Forum
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post #961 of 971 Old 11-14-2008, 04:29 AM
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Hi all, I'm new on this forum.
I've read all the 32 pages of this thread and I want to ask a simple and direct question about reproducing bit perfect audio on Vista (ok, I already know it's not REAL bit perfect, but something as close as it's possible due to other necessities, like do not disable the mixer during the music listening etc.)

I use a Audiotrak Prodigy HD2 sound card, analogically connected via QED One cables to a pair of KRK Rokit Powered RP5 G2 active speakers

now:

I've setted the audio card volume at it's 0 dB via control panel
setted WMP11 at 100% volume
setted Vista volume at 100%
Choosed 24 bit/96 kHz in advanced properties, selectioned both box options under exclusive modality and setted Prodigy HD 2 speakers as predefinite
Set the volume knobs of my active speakers to -30 dB (their maximum, they go from -30 dB to + 6 Db)

In this way I got an incredible audio quality full of detail and transparence but... volume is really high this way and the hardware amplification of my speaker not reach 0 volume, in fact if i set it to -30 dB I still got high volume reproduction...
In general the volume is right enough with this settings, but in some specific cases, using certain LPs, I have to set down a bit the volume if I want to continue to live in this building :-D

So my question is: how can I manage the volume WITHOUT compromising music quality?
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post #962 of 971 Old 11-20-2008, 03:24 AM
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Tip: Use Foobar2000 audio player with WASAPI output plugin for bit-perfect output in Vista.
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post #963 of 971 Old 12-23-2008, 05:48 AM
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I just want to give proper kudos to the crew involved with the development of the much overhauled audio stack in Vista. Can't tell you what actual noticeable audio quality improvements this has made over XP to the point that Vista is actually really enticing even with the low specs of my machines to run it.

I currently have an HP Business laptop here with a first gen Conexant Venice HD audio sound card in it. Currently I have it dualbooted between of XP and Windows 7 for testing. The differences in audio quality is like night and day. Feeding a middle-of-the-road $25 pair of headphones, the XP side tends over-compensate for the high peaks in volume and abruptly clips them. Volume is hardly loud enough for comfortable listening levels and when the volume is cranked to max, it only exacerbates the clipping over-compensation issue.

Windows 7 on the other hand (which I believe utilizes the same audio system as Vista) has none of these issues. Volume is much louder than XP could ever hope to get. Can usually go to 1/2 volume and be comfortable. None of the clipping over-compensation garbage. And the system-wide features like the volume normalization, bass boost, and the room correction are just testaments to the attention of detail you guys have put into it. Kudos.

As to the bit-perfect argument earlier in the thread: Seriously, how anal do you really have to be? Let's put it in a really easy to comprehend scenario here: Vista obviously does a MUCH better job than XP could ever hope in keeping the original audio data intact as much as it can. Amirm and the rest of the team have proven this. It's not 'bit perfect', but it is pretty damn close and I challenge any one of you to ABX the original bit-for-bit waveform from what has passed through Vista's audio system. Past that point, the only other way to even consider knowing for certain the waveform has been modified in the slightest is having complex tools in every point in the audio pipeline that will graph and compare along the way. With that out of the way, you can't tell me to even the most attuned human ears that you can make out a difference in TRUE ABX tests. -- I'm only pointing this out because I used to be the same way and still do while in XP. Always use lossless audio on the most important parts of my music library, run through winamp using a high quality resampler to get it to the sound card's native 48khz samplerate, then out via KS. But come the point Vista/Win7 start becoming viable for me to use as a daily OS, I'm not gonna bother with that messy pipeline. In fact, I dare say I may end up using WMP as my daily media player (well, once they can get proper replaygain support anyway. This is still one of my tiny pet peeves.).

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post #964 of 971 Old 12-23-2008, 01:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vchat20 View Post

Aalls to the bit-perfect argument earlier in the thread: Seriously, how anal do you really have to be? Let's put it in a really easy to comprehend scenario here: Vista obviously does a MUCH better job than XP could ever hope in keeping the original audio data intact as much as it can.

Since when is being better than XP good enough? Why compromise when you can use a Mac, which has no issue at all? It's not simply better in terms of audio data integrity, it is bit perfect.
Quote:


I challenge any one of you to ABX the original bit-for-bit waveform from what has passed through Vista's audio system.

I would accept a properly conduced ABC/HR test (the ITU, the major engineering standards setting body, recommends ABC/HR over ABX). Careful though--one could construct specific artificial streams that would showcase audibility of errors even to cloth ears from Ohio.

As for compression, audio compression is based on psychoacoustics and imperfections are less audible than similar magnitude ones coming from other failings of the system, so lossy compression is acceptable for non-archival purposes.
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post #965 of 971 Old 02-06-2009, 09:12 AM
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I have the Realtek ALC888 with a Genius SW-5.1 speakers hooked to it.
In realtek CP I have enabled bass redir and speaker fill.
But when listening to 2ch MP3s in Winamp there is very little bass coming from the woofer.
Is there a way to increase how much of the signal Vista redirects to the woofer speaker?
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post #966 of 971 Old 02-28-2009, 12:04 PM
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I've recently tried a new setup for vista's room correction + phantom center:

Arcsoft Total Media Theatre for LPCM 5.1 BD playback
5.1 speaker config in TMT with downsampling disabled
5.1 speaker config in Vista, with center disabled (I don't use a center)
+ room correction = 4.1
multi-channel analog out of Onkyo PCI 200 SE (set to 24/192) to Integra RDC-7 processor

In this mode my RDC7 is only a high-end 5.1 analog volume control with per channel level adjusment. No extra AD/DA/processing or delay is introduced through the RDC7. To allow max processing headroom in vista's room correction I disabled vista's room correction first but enabled the phantom center and I set the correct dB levels per channel on the RDC7 so that DVE's test tones play 75dB in each speaker.

Then I enabled vista's room correction and tried two scenario's:

1) Behringer ECM8000 pointed to front speakers

When I point the ECM8000 towards the frontspeakers, my surround speakers play too loud when testing afterwards with video essentials and a radioshack digital SPL meter pointed to the ceiling.

2) Behringer ECM8000 pointed to ceiling

When I point the ECM8000 towards the ceiling, the high frequencies are a little bit accentuated (which is not really an issue) but the biggest issue is my right surround which plays too silent, even thought I'm using the ITU-T angles for my surrounds as depicted here:

http://members.home.nl/d.vandenbergh...m/ex_nonex.jpg

and vista sometimes complains about not being able to get consistent room measurements. I also noticed that the first second of every file played through foobar makes clipping sound, while this is no longer the case when I uncheck the room correction checkbox.

Is this the correct way to measure the speakers/room ? Should I use a simplied micophone such as used by Audessey (omni-directional, pointing to ceiling )?

Another option is to try could be a less directional microphone such as this one: http://www.audioadvisor.com/images/VELOSPL_820.JPG

Frederic Vanden Poel
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post #967 of 971 Old 06-05-2009, 02:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Naylia View Post

I get what amounts to a file not found error on WMALFXGFXDSP.DLL. This file is nowhere on my computer. I am running Vista Enterprise (which I suspect could be why it is missing, probably other reasons too). Can someone post this file? If someone posts it, and I then place it in my system32 folder, can I expect the rest to work?

I'm configuring the exact same card as I currently own (Onkyo PCI SE 200 LTD) on my friends HTPC which has Vista SP1, and the WMALFXGFXDSP.DLL is not present in the system32 dir.

Executing the exact same procedures on this Vista SP1 PC doesn't show the enhancements tab after a reboot.

Did microsoft strip the room correction feature from SP1 ?

Manually adding the FxProperties has no result on SP1: after a reboot, the enhancements tab is not visible.

Update: we didn't install the onboard (Azalea compliant) audio drivers as the chipset was disabled from the bios, which was the reason for the room correction not to be working with the Onkyo card, as it needs APO's defined by a typical HD audio card.

So the correct procedure is:
1) Install onboard HD-drivers: http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...php?p=10662885
2) http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...b#post10321557

Frederic Vanden Poel
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post #968 of 971 Old 08-31-2009, 01:40 PM
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Does Vista's Room Equalization Work over HDMI connection?

In other words, can you plug in the PC into the receiver through HDMI, and pass the equalized audio signal from the PC?
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post #969 of 971 Old 08-31-2009, 03:05 PM
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Is this thread applicable to Win 7 at all or is there a similar thread for the audio on Win 7? Does it have room correction?

Brian
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post #970 of 971 Old 08-31-2009, 05:08 PM
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As far as I know, the same audio enhancements are carried through in Windows 7. Perhaps someone can let us know, if there are any further improvements in W7, over Vista?

And of course, does it work over HDMI?
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post #971 of 971 Old 10-17-2009, 07:56 PM
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Bit-perfect playback is a combination of several factors, not whether the computer is a Mac or PC, OS/X or Windows. You can certainly have lossless, bit-perfect playback on a PC, or you can have lossy-playback on a Mac.

Basically, lossless formats such as .WAV (and there are others, of course) certainly can be played back losslessly. So can formats such as Windows Audio Lossless, which gives about a 2:1 compression over .WAV (and again, there are other lossless compressed formats). These are just examples.

Then, the main issue is the volume control in the media player software. If the gain is set to 1 (meaning full volume), Windows Media Player in Vista and Windows 7 should pass bit-perfect data streams. In this case, the volume control will have to be in an external component, which might also have HDCD decoding.

If the volume is set to less than 100%, then highly sophisticated gain adjustment software is used, and the resulting output will no longer be bit-perfect.

Whether that's important or not depends upon the downstream equipment. One issue is that in the absence of bit-perfect transfer out of the PC or Mac, HDCD encoding, if present on the source material, will no longer work.

These are my impressions as to how the whole thing works in general.

To my ears, a much more important issue is whether the playback system as a whole can switch polarity. Many tracks are recording invert polarity, which tends to dull the transients, etc., and some electronics circuits also invert polarity. Usually, one polarity will sound much better than the other, unless the mix is really mediocre.

Nicholas Bedworth, CTO
DigitalDirect Development Corporation

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