Spec an Audiophile PC With Me Using CAPS 3.0 as a Starting Point, Adding HDMI for Multi-Channel Hi Rez Audio!!! - Page 2 - AVS Forum
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post #31 of 840 Old 05-20-2013, 06:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Bruzonsky View Post

I've got JRiver Options set to play from the PC's memory/RAM, so when I copied all the ISOs onto the external USB drive, I expected no change in sonics - just like using an external USB drive with my Bryston BDP-1 media player. I didn't load the music onto the external USB drive to demo purposes - I planned to just keep the music on the external USB drive. Late Friday evening, I simply put on some multi-channel music to relax and enjoy, and I quickly realized that something was off, and I played a # of selections uniformly hearing the loss of audio quality. What surprised me even more was that the FLAC hi rez from DVD-Audio stuff also sounded flat and tinny.
As I said before, JRiver is reading data from the hard drive - it is not decoding audio from the hard drive.

It reads the file into memory.
Then decodes the audio file that is stored in memory.

So no matter the source - an internal SSD or HDD, a USB/Firewire/other external drive, streaming off the network, it loads the whole file into memory, and then decodes it. Where the file is stored can have no impact on playback.

If the data had not copied correctly, the file would be corrupt and JRiver would be unable to play it.
If the computer was unable to read the data off the external drive correctly, you wouldn't have been able to copy it back onto the internal drive and play it.

This is the difference between computer-based audio and CE devices. (stand-alone CD players, SACD players etc.)
Computers don't have any tolerance for data errors. If a computer can't read a file, it will throw up an error.
If a CD/SACD/DVD/Blu-ray player encounters an error, it will just play through it and you may (or may not) notice audible or visible glitches.

If you have the time, this video might give you an idea of why you are hearing differences, even though playback is the same: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BYTlN6wjcvQ
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Originally Posted by Steve Bruzonsky View Post

Fortunately, today, once I reloaded the music to the Dell 8500 internal hard drive, the magic was back for both ripped SACD ISOs and DVD-Audio multi-channel FLAC files. If the internal Dell 8500 hard drive had sounded about the same as late Friday night's session, then I would be abandoning this PC-HDMI-multi-channel music project. But fortunately, my ear-brain knows what sounds excellent vs poor and I'm not afraid to use them. Any custom PC I order will have a sufficiently large internal hard drive to cover all of my SACD ISO files and DVD-Audio FLAC multi-channel files.
Our audio memory is vanishingly small. There is no possible way that you could have identified whether playback today (or last night) was the same as any other day in the past.
Or even playing the same track twice in a row from the exact same source. Your brain will focus on different things each time you listen.
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Originally Posted by Steve Bruzonsky View Post

Chrono - are you related to DougWinsor? I wonder?tongue.gif
Sorry, I don't know who you're talking about.
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I note in your AVS Profile you state that you are a "critic". Really - do you make a living as a political critic, food critic - or perhaps you simply mean as a hobbyist - an audio critic - here at AVS???
Well that's out of date. Ever since they changed the forums here I have been unable to update my profile or forum settings, so it will have to stay that way.
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Originally Posted by Bulldogger View Post

To output all the resolutions, like 24/176, you need to use either an Intel motherboard or one of the AMD GPUs. With an Intel motherboard you don't need the AMD card. However, a card like the Radeon HD7750 is only a little more than 100.00 for those who don't have Intel motherboards. Also, the higher end AMD cards give you the ability to do advanced video processing like madVR http://forum.doom9.org/showthread.php?t=146228 . MadVR is pretty awesome looking processing at it's best settings.
For what it's worth, AMD cards lack support for Windowed Overlay Mode, which can help improve performance on low-power cards, and they don't perform as well with hardware accelerated (DXVA) video decoding either.
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post #32 of 840 Old 05-20-2013, 07:05 PM - Thread Starter
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"XPS 8500 [edit]

Released on May 2, 2012, the Dell XPS 8500 is the first version in this series to have the third-generation Intel Quad Core i5 and i7 processor added to it. This version of the XPS's motherboard uses the Intel Chipset H77 with socket LGA 1155 and has USB 3.0 ports built into the front. The "Special Edition" version of this desktop, (starting price $999 as of Jan '13), comes standard with such advanced features as an Intel Core i7, Blu-ray drive and an 32 GB Intel SRT SSD mounted on the motherboard to enhance the operational speed of the traditional hard disk.

See Dell's official release notification here.[6]"

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dell_XPS

As I stated at the start of this thread, although my Dell XPS has an Intel motherboard, and supposedly the HDMI output will handle all resolutions to 192-24, when I connect the motherboard's HDMI for audio purposes, JRiver will not output multi-channel hi res PCM, from ripped SACD ISOs or even ripped FLAC DVD-Audio files - it will only handle 2 channel for this. Thus I need the video card for this per my own experimenting.

And I have a Toshiba i-7 laptop which I tried and it has the same problem - apparently the NVIDIA cards are famous for this.

For best audio sonics and quality, I want JRiver to do everything audio and for the PC to simply pass on the JRiver audio signal over HDMI into the CB3 HD! Oh my dear - I just realized, when I used the laptop, and set it to output whatever PCM rez, I didn't think it sounded very good. My brain & body is one larger placebo per our time shifting Chrono friend! I feel so stupid that he continues to shout out how confused I am!@@@cool.gifeek.gifmad.gif

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post #33 of 840 Old 05-20-2013, 10:29 PM
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Some people don't mind the price but for audio only or even blu ray you'd only need 2 gigabytes of ram 4 would be to feel better and 8 would be the max at 16 gigabytes you use twice as much ram as hardcore gamers. The most intense games usually only call for 4 gigabytes, and more doesn't mean faster heck there isn't really much of a speed difference between 800 mhz ram and 2800 mhz ram. Ram is the most over rated over glamorized part of a pc all of these computer makers like dell and HP make people think 8 gb is somehow better than 4gb just so they can upsell you $30 ram for $150.

If you want a dedicated AMD graphics card then a AMD APU (cpu + gpu) would be very fast and much cheaper than Intel and dedicated graphics and it has HDMI with a IGP motherboard.

A 4.2 ghz trinity quad core APU with AMD radeon 7660D costs $129 and would be perfect. They're using a AMD Jaguar APU in the Playstation 4.

You can get 38 frames per second in 1080p on far cry 2 with the trinity apu.

With 4-8 gb of ram and a trinity apu you'd save like $500 for the same outcome.

And unless your compressing large blu ray files a $300 intel ivy bridge cpu would be pointless. If I'm not mistaken, ripping isos from a disc drive is more dependent on the drive speed rather than a cpu and you should see no performance gains from a intel ivy bridge vs a trinity apu. I think compressing audio and video is not cool anyways.
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post #34 of 840 Old 05-21-2013, 01:53 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Bruzonsky View Post

As I stated at the start of this thread, although my Dell XPS has an Intel motherboard, and supposedly the HDMI output will handle all resolutions to 192-24, when I connect the motherboard's HDMI for audio purposes, JRiver will not output multi-channel hi res PCM, from ripped SACD ISOs or even ripped FLAC DVD-Audio files - it will only handle 2 channel for this.
Check that your output DSP settings are correct:

VuZf8T0.png

You should also be using WASAPI as the output mode.
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Originally Posted by Steve Bruzonsky View Post

And I have a Toshiba i-7 laptop which I tried and it has the same problem - apparently the NVIDIA cards are famous for this.
Does your hardware actually support 24/192 multichannel audio via HDMI? Are you passing audio through a display first? (they often restrict you to 24/48 2 channel audio)

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Originally Posted by ComputerTech0903 View Post

Some people don't mind the price but for audio only or even blu ray you'd only need 2 gigabytes of ram 4 would be to feel better and 8 would be the max at 16 gigabytes you use twice as much ram as hardcore gamers. The most intense games usually only call for 4 gigabytes, and more doesn't mean faster heck there isn't really much of a speed difference between 800 mhz ram and 2800 mhz ram. Ram is the most over rated over glamorized part of a pc all of these computer makers like dell and HP make people think 8 gb is somehow better than 4gb just so they can upsell you $30 ram for $150.

If you want a dedicated AMD graphics card then a AMD APU (cpu + gpu) would be very fast and much cheaper than Intel and dedicated graphics and it has HDMI with a IGP motherboard.
AMD APUs are integrated onto the motherboard. He already has a PC. And for current generation Intel CPUs, 1600MHz is the right speed for RAM. Any slower and you will see degraded performance, and you won't see much benefit from anything faster.
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post #35 of 840 Old 05-21-2013, 07:05 AM - Thread Starter
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I've already set the JRiver DSP settings - except in my case, as my Theta CB3 HD SSP/ Theta Gen VIII Seres 3 DAC combo do not decode DSD, I have the "Greater Than 192,000 Hz" set to "176,400 Hz) so that ripped SACD ISOs will be converted by JRiver to 176-24!

Like I said, for my purposes, I require that the motherboard and any video card NOT alter the audio signal being output by JRiver - AFTER JRiver has converted ripped SACD ISO to PCM 176-24. My Dell 8500's Intel motherboard HDMI output, after "proper" setup in the "Sound" control panel AND in the JRiver "Options" including "DSP" menu, will not allow this. My Dell 8500's AMD Radeon video card allows this.

The Dell is connected by HDMI straight into my Theta CB3 HD SSP from the AMD Radion video card. I am using an LG LCD monitor (for PCs) as my display connected by DVI/DVI cable from the Intel motherboard DVI out.

As I have been playing with all this, including setting JRiver to output "Direct" so that the PC video card takes whatever it gets from JRiver and outputs a set audio rez, I have verified by my Theta CB3 HD SSP front display that the SSP will play from everything up to and including 192-24. And as I have it set up now, it plays fine from ripped SACD ISOs at 176-24, and it plays fine ripped to FLAC DVD-Audio at their rez of 192-24 (only a few)/96-24 (most)/48-24 (a half dozen or so).

The only Dell 8500 PC "Sound" setting which permits the PC NOT TO alter the JRiver output audio signal is Wasapi Event and I have it set to that.

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post #36 of 840 Old 05-21-2013, 08:31 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Bruzonsky View Post

Like I said, for my purposes, I require that the motherboard and any video card NOT alter the audio signal being output by JRiver - AFTER JRiver has converted ripped SACD ISO to PCM 176-24. My Dell 8500's Intel motherboard HDMI output, after "proper" setup in the "Sound" control panel AND in the JRiver "Options" including "DSP" menu, will not allow this. My Dell 8500's AMD Radeon video card allows this.
As long as you are using WASAPI (exclusive) they won't be altering the sound.

RriPcYu.pngoLkYwt0.png
Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Bruzonsky View Post

The only Dell 8500 PC "Sound" setting which permits the PC NOT TO alter the JRiver output audio signal is Wasapi Event and I have it set to that.
You should switch to the "Latest" update channel rather than "Stable". The latest versions have a lot of fixes for things, and I haven't had any stability issues with it. The WASAPI and WASAPI Event options have been combined into the settings shown above.

This may also fix your multichannel issues.
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post #37 of 840 Old 05-21-2013, 12:28 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chronoptimist View Post

As long as you are using WASAPI (exclusive) they won't be altering the sound.

RriPcYu.pngoLkYwt0.png
You should switch to the "Latest" update channel rather than "Stable". The latest versions have a lot of fixes for things, and I haven't had any stability issues with it. The WASAPI and WASAPI Event options have been combined into the settings shown above.

This may also fix your multichannel issues.

Yea, I've been using WASAPI (exclusive). But I will switch to the "Latest" update and try that.

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post #38 of 840 Old 05-21-2013, 03:25 PM - Thread Starter
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I loaded the latest beta JRiver software. Predictably, made no difference, in that when I play ripped SACD ISO files, setting JRiver Options as previously discussed, including
converting to output 176-24 from ripped SACD ISOs, JRiver won't work due to hardware limitations. The reason why is so simple. Both my Toshiba i7 laptop, and Dell 8500 XPS, have Intel motherboards, and in the "Sound" control panel, it shows that the motherboard - Realtek Audio - doesn't list as being able to output 176-24/16 or 88-24/16.
Apparently the Intel motherboard wasn't designed with JRiver Media Center converting ripped SACD ISO files in mind for best sonics!

Does this tighten the knot that for my purposes, of best sonics from ripped SACD ISO files, I must add an AMD video card with HDMI output which permits JRiver ripped SACD ISOs converted to 176-24 to pass through and out HDMI to the SSP?

By the way, listening to a ripped SACD ISO of Yellow Jackets - sure sounds fantastic!!!@@@

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post #39 of 840 Old 05-21-2013, 04:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Bruzonsky View Post

I loaded the latest beta JRiver software. Predictably, made no difference, in that when I play ripped SACD ISO files, setting JRiver Options as previously discussed, including
converting to output 176-24 from ripped SACD ISOs, JRiver won't work due to hardware limitations. The reason why is so simple. Both my Toshiba i7 laptop, and Dell 8500 XPS, have Intel motherboards, and in the "Sound" control panel, it shows that the motherboard - Realtek Audio - doesn't list as being able to output 176-24/16 or 88-24/16.
I don't think you should be using "Realtek" audio if you are sending it over HDMI. That is your onboard sound card - check that you're sending audio to the correct device.

HDMI shows up as "NVIDIA High Definition Audio" for me. (with an Nvidia card, of course)
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Errr I thought the whole point of this thread was to build a new computer not upgrade the existing one which is why I suggested the trinity apu or even the upcoming kaveri apu as it's really just a dedicated graphics card on a cpu if you wanted a dedicated graphics card.

Good luck!
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post #41 of 840 Old 05-21-2013, 10:43 PM - Thread Starter
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The point of the thread is to build a new PC for multi-channel HDMI to my Theta CB3 HD. But I am using the Dell 8500 XPS to give me an idea what works and doesn't work.

Have any of you used multi-channel HDMI from a PC to the Theta CB3 HD, another SSP, or even a receiver?

I am being cautious - for its easy for someone with a two channel PC audio to receiver or SSP to tell me what works for them but may not work in my setup.

Have any of you done multi-channel SACD from ripped SACD ISOs via HDMI from a PC to the Theta CB3 HD, another SSP, or a receiver?

I appreciate the feedback - but I am being careful and don't want to spec and pay for a PC and then find it won't do what I need.

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post #42 of 840 Old 05-22-2013, 11:15 AM - Thread Starter
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I previously mentioned that my demos determined that using an external USB 2.0 2 terabyte hard drive for music storage resulted in poor sonics, compared to having the music files on the Dell 8500 XPS internal SATA 2 terabyte hard drive.

http://www.computeraudiophile.com/content/497-computer-audiophile-pocket-server-c-p-s-v3-zuma/


"Add-in USB Card - SOtM tX-USBexp


The SOtM tX-USBexp is a USB 3.0 PCI express card that snaps into a PCIe slot on the Intel DH77EB motherboard. The half-height card can use either full or half-height PCIe bracket / trim plate. Both small and full size brackets are included with purchase of the SOtM tX-USBexp from Simple Design . One huge benefit of this USB card is the ability to power it externally with the Red Wine Audio Black Lightning or any PSU of choice. Nearly all high end USB DACs require USB bus power form the computer to power the USb receiver chip in the DAC. Sending the dirty power from a computer motherboard can result in very audible noise and decreased sound quality. Readers with DACs that don't require USB power can also turn the USB power switch to the off position on the SOtM tX-USBexp card. This setting stops all power from going to the DAC. "

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post #43 of 840 Old 05-22-2013, 04:06 PM - Thread Starter
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Chrono, thanks to your info, I loaded the latest beta (instead of the regular version) JRiver onto my Toshiba i7 laptop, connecting its NVidia video card HDMI output via HDMI to my Theta CB3 HD SSP. Yes, the NVidia came up in the control panel "sound". I was able to set
"WASAPI" in the "sound" menu and this time, I got sound from my CB3 HD!!! However, in JRiver, when I set "above 192,000 Hz" to output at "176,400 Hz", no sound, with display asking me if I want to set at "96,000 Hz", because the NVidia card doesn't do 176,000 Hz or 88,000 Hz. So I set it first to 192-24, and then to 96-24, and in each case, the "WASAPI" in "exclusive" mode worked fine. (The regular JRiver release didn't permit me to use "WASAPI", it only worked with "Direct" mode).

However the sound from ripped SACD multi-channel, or two channel, ISOs is mediocre when I do this. If the NVidia sound card handled 176-24 and would output this direct from JRiver, then I'd be in business. When I played the same selections using the Dell 8500 XPS,
with its AMD Radeon card set for higher than 192-24 for output at 176-24, the sound was leagues better!!@@

But it was worth trying.

Again confirming why the AMD Radeon card is a must for multi-channel audio from ripped SACD multi-channel ISOs in a highly musical system like mine.

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post #44 of 840 Old 05-22-2013, 08:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Bruzonsky View Post

Chrono, thanks to your info, I loaded the latest beta (instead of the regular version) JRiver onto my Toshiba i7 laptop, connecting its NVidia video card HDMI output via HDMI to my Theta CB3 HD SSP. Yes, the NVidia came up in the control panel "sound". I was able to set
"WASAPI" in the "sound" menu and this time, I got sound from my CB3 HD!!! However, in JRiver, when I set "above 192,000 Hz" to output at "176,400 Hz", no sound, with display asking me if I want to set at "96,000 Hz", because the NVidia card doesn't do 176,000 Hz or 88,000 Hz. So I set it first to 192-24, and then to 96-24, and in each case, the "WASAPI" in "exclusive" mode worked fine. (The regular JRiver release didn't permit me to use "WASAPI", it only worked with "Direct" mode).

However the sound from ripped SACD multi-channel, or two channel, ISOs is mediocre when I do this. If the NVidia sound card handled 176-24 and would output this direct from JRiver, then I'd be in business. When I played the same selections using the Dell 8500 XPS,
with its AMD Radeon card set for higher than 192-24 for output at 176-24, the sound was leagues better!!@@

But it was worth trying.

Again confirming why the AMD Radeon card is a must for multi-channel audio from ripped SACD multi-channel ISOs in a highly musical system like mine.

If the HDMI card is a must (as appears to be the case, I would get a separate CAPS 3.0 for 2 channel with the battery power. You need to verify how much CPU (i.e. which CAPS model) you need to to run high rez files and JPlay, if you decided you want to use JPlay. If you want to eventually try Dirac Live on the server, you probably need to get a Zuma.

Before spec'ing the MCH server, I would do a proof of concept with video. Rip a concert blu ray (probably need to get an external drive) and play it back on the Dell 8500 XPS in Jriver. If sound / video it is as good or better than the Compl Blu 3D, I would build a separate server for MCH / Video. Putting a very high grade 3D gaming video card in the MCH server (higher grade than what is now in the Dell) and a Blu Ray drive. Even if you don't rip the Blu Rays (I personally will only rip concert discs, not movies), you can play them directly from the discdrive, and with the high grade video card get better video than from the Compli. Keep in mind the server route will not downsample 96/24 concert blu rays, so it may sound better than the Compli route. A very high grade video card, should best the video chipset that come with the Oppo (and is not touched by Theta).

You can probably find out with a bit of research how video of a high grade gaming card compares with a standard Oppo on Blu Ray. Pretty sure others have gone this route.
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post #45 of 840 Old 05-22-2013, 08:54 PM - Thread Starter
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I already have a blu ray USB 3.0 player and I tried it out with the Dell 8500 this afternoon. No comparison video or sonics to the Compli Blu Ray 3d or the prior model Compli Blu. I am not interested one bit in blu ray, just multi-channel audio. And I think I will simply limit this PC for multi-channel HDMI and be very happy, as I am, with the Bryston BDP-1 for strict two channel. Although the multi-channel is nice, it ain't blowing me that I am there like the Bryston does in my setup and room.

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post #46 of 840 Old 05-22-2013, 08:56 PM - Thread Starter
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Oh - I already rip the audio tracks of concert blu rays with DVD Audio Extractor and thanks to AnyDVD HD if the blu ray is encoded blu ray plus I am still able to do the rip. Most concert blu rays rip at 48-24. I do not need this multi-channel music PC for ripping, already got that covered with other PCs.

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post #47 of 840 Old 05-22-2013, 08:58 PM - Thread Starter
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Oh - I got JPlay working with JRiver over HDMI thanks to using the latest beta JRiver. But it still had lotsa issues and wouldn't let me use the best modes for audio. I am not going to bother with Jplay.

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post #48 of 840 Old 05-23-2013, 06:30 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Bruzonsky View Post

Oh - I got JPlay working with JRiver over HDMI thanks to using the latest beta JRiver. But it still had lotsa issues and wouldn't let me use the best modes for audio. I am not going to bother with Jplay.

I'll soon find out if it is an HDMI issue or a Multi Channel issue. If it works OK with the Lynx card, the latter, if not the former.
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post #49 of 840 Old 05-23-2013, 06:35 AM
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Originally Posted by Steve Bruzonsky View Post

I already have a blu ray USB 3.0 player and I tried it out with the Dell 8500 this afternoon. No comparison video or sonics to the Compli Blu Ray 3d or the prior model Compli Blu. I am not interested one bit in blu ray, just multi-channel audio. And I think I will simply limit this PC for multi-channel HDMI and be very happy, as I am, with the Bryston BDP-1 for strict two channel. Although the multi-channel is nice, it ain't blowing me that I am there like the Bryston does in my setup and room.

That is good information. If video quality through the PC is a big step down relative to the modded Oppo, I'll likely hang on to a modded player, and run just the audio digitally into the Trinnov (or evenutally into Lynx card with Dirac on the server) and the video over HDMI into my HDMI video only switch. I could still rip the BR audio only for playback through the server with Jriver if I just want to listen to the concert without video (like you appear to be doing).
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post #50 of 840 Old 05-23-2013, 08:10 AM - Thread Starter
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Yes, all my blu ray concert discs are already ripped music only for two channel. I will also be ripping them for multi-channel - haven't started that yet. Only recently ripped all my DVD-Audio discs to multi-channel (I ripped them for two channel some time ago).

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Someone posted here that the video card has a fan. Not so:

http://www.sapphiretech.com/presentation/product/?cid=1&gid=3&sgid=1159&pid=1471&lid=1

SAPPHIRE HD 7750 1GB GDDR5 ULTIMATE

The SAPPHIRE HD 7750 ULTIMATE is the first card in this generation to use a passive heatpipe and heatsink cooler to deliver totally silent cooling, and increased reliability as it has no mechanical moving parts. It shares all the features of the HD 7700 series and the highly acclaimed GCN graphics processing architecture making it ideal for HTPCs and any general purpose PC where operational noise needs to be kept to a minimum.

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Originally Posted by Steve Bruzonsky View Post

Someone posted here that the video card has a fan. Not so:

http://www.sapphiretech.com/presentation/product/?cid=1&gid=3&sgid=1159&pid=1471&lid=1

SAPPHIRE HD 7750 1GB GDDR5 ULTIMATE

The SAPPHIRE HD 7750 ULTIMATE is the first card in this generation to use a passive heatpipe and heatsink cooler to deliver totally silent cooling, and increased reliability as it has no mechanical moving parts. It shares all the features of the HD 7700 series and the highly acclaimed GCN graphics processing architecture making it ideal for HTPCs and any general purpose PC where operational noise needs to be kept to a minimum.

Cool! (pun intended). I must have looked at the predecessor of this card (the "non-ULTIMATE" version), which has a fan.

http://www.sapphiretech.com/presentation/product/?cid=1&gid=3&sgid=1159&lid=1&pid=1454&leg=0
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By the way, Andrew of Small Green Computer advises that the SOtM tX-USBexp (to output audio via USB) card has very good filters on it, so he doesn't forsee a "noise" issue by having this card AND the Sapphire video card in the PC. Andrew understand from some other multi-channel HDMI users that the video card was necessary for this purpose, as I have found.

Given power requirements with the Sapphire video card, etc, Andrew recommends the following power supply:

http://kingwin.com/products/cate/power_supplies/str_500.asp

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Bruzonsky View Post

By the way, Andrew of Small Green Computer advises that the SOtM tX-USBexp (to output audio via USB) card has very good filters on it, so he doesn't forsee a "noise" issue by having this card AND the Sapphire video card in the PC. Andrew understand from some other multi-channel HDMI users that the video card was necessary for this purpose, as I have found.

Given power requirements with the Sapphire video card, etc, Andrew recommends the following power supply:

http://kingwin.com/products/cate/power_supplies/str_500.asp

Looks like this will be an all fanless device in the end.
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Right, the PC will be entirely fanless.

And the computer case looks like it is a Theta Digital product, but its not, its:

Silverstone Crown Series SST-CW02B-MXR-USB3.0 (black + LCD/IR + multimedia + card reader)

http://www.silverstonetek.com/product.php?pid=138

I am going to name my new PC "The TA Digital Enterprise HTPC"

(Get it, the first part spells "The-tavDigital". HA!)

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Bruzonsky View Post

Right, the PC will be entirely fanless.

And the computer case looks like it is a Theta Digital product, but its not, its:

Silverstone Crown Series SST-CW02B-MXR-USB3.0 (black + LCD/IR + multimedia + card reader)

http://www.silverstonetek.com/product.php?pid=138

I am going to name my new PC "The TA Digital Enterprise HTPC"

(Get it, the first part spells "The-tavDigital". HA!)

It actually looks like the Marantz styling. Like a big ud9004. I am getting the far more modest FC10, which was actually sold out in the US and had to be shipped from the UK.

http://www.streacom.com/products/fc10-fanless-chassis/
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post #57 of 840 Old 05-26-2013, 05:33 PM
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I am not at all a Ultra high end member but I like PCs and how we can play music off it... Your spec'd out PC is quite reasonable, I would suggest a small suggestion of my own... based on your requirements, i would suggest building the following spec'd PC because you dont want your case to run hot and based on the needs and power requirements, my suggestion is below...

CPU: Intel Core i5 3470 CPU ( I wouldn't suggest to wait for Haswell since that has a higher TDP than Ivy Bridge)
RAM: Crucial Ballistix Sport 1600Mhz 16GB RAM (Crucial is owned by Micron and Micron makes the BEST RAM controller in the market)
Storage: Crucial M4 128GB SSD
Computer Case: OrigenAE S21T (This is the best case you can find in the market for HTPC, but if that is a big one, you can get S16T as well)
Motherboard: ASUS P8Z77 Motherboard (Although I think H77 Motherboard in a mATX form factor would be good since Z77 is better for overclock)
Power Supply: Seasonic Platinum SS-660XP2 PSU
Video Card: I think your selected video card is fine for the job. But i would have gone for nVidia 650 made by EVGA because of lower temps and power req)
CPU Cooler: I would suggest pick the low profile cooler like Noctua NH-C14 CPU Cooler... Noctua coolers are best in the market for Air cooling IMHO...

IF you ever have heating issues in the case, only look for Noctua NF-F12PWM 120mm fans... they are the best on the market...

Apart from this, if you do plan to add a sound card, then again I would suggest getting an ASUS Sonar series sound card rather than Lynx Studio...

Best would be an external USB DAC rather than an Add-on sound card. Benchmark media DAC are my favorites...

Also, i have read about your theater and I think OrigenAE case would fit and compliment just fine.. It is around $1200 for the case only but I am sure that shouldn't be a problem for you...

I am a big time reader of your posts and i like your theater... When my time comes, i would model my theater based on yours but as of now, I need to focus on my work and finish of my study loans (Passed school couple years back)

This is my suggestion though... Thanks for reading and bearing my suggestion..

Zammy
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post #58 of 840 Old 05-26-2013, 06:46 PM - Thread Starter
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Zammy, thanks for your ideas.

However, some are not practical for my purposes. The video card must be AMD Radion based, as the NVidia cards will not pass unchanged the hi rez audio PCM out of JRiver on the PC via HDMI.
External USB hard drives are problematic (1) if I use the PC's USB out for stereo; and (2) my demoing has "shown" the inferiority of using an external USB hard drive with the Dell 8500 XPS
(but the PC being built will avoid "extra" noise such that using an external eSATA drive, or of course NAS, won't have that problem.And we want to avoid overclocking as the PC and its components will be cooled passively, without fans, and as I don't require overclocking for my high end audio purposes.

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post #59 of 840 Old 05-27-2013, 07:50 PM - Thread Starter
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4. I played some hi rez ripped SACD ISOs vs the DFF multi-channel DSD files extracted from the ISOs. Sounded the same to me. And this is great!! Because I was unable to edit the extracted multi-channel DFF files. Don't know why? Each DFF file has the proper song # and title extracted automatically from the ISO file. But when you try to edit, the edit page has no info at all and won't let me edit.And by the way, JRiver plays the ripped SACD ISOs and does apply a great sounding filter automatically. Also interesting is that I have no problem converting two channel (whether from combined two and multi-channel ripped SACD ISOs, or from just two channel ripped SACD ISOs) to stereo DSF files for each individual track , and then using Korg Audiogate (applying soft filter and Korg Aqua dither, I find this sounds best) to convert to 176-24 FLAC stereo. But although JRiver I understand allows you also to convert from ripped SACD ISO files to DSF (DSD) stereo files for each track to two channel FLAC, currently JRiver doesn't provide for such multi-channel conversion from
ripped SACD ISO to DFF (DSD) and then to multi-channel FLAC. Somehow or other, I was able to right click on the multi-channel DFF (DSD) files on "convert" and use DBPowerAmp to convert to multi-channel FLAC files - but they wouldn't let me edit and they wouldn't play except for like "white noise"!!! My conclusion is absolutely that I want to play multi-channel ripped SACD ISos natively and let JRiver do the rest, using an AMD Radeon 7700 series plus video card. Also, Korg Audiogate I found only only converts the two channel DSF (DSD) files, it will not convert the multi-channel DFF (DSD) to multi-channel FLAC!

5. How is the sonic quality comparing two channel - using the Dell 8500/JRiver out HDMI into CB3 HD (with Theta Gen VIII Series 3 DAC for front right and left channels) vs the Bryston BDP-1 digital coaxial out into the Theta Gen VIII Series 3 DAC vs the Bryston BDP-1 AES/EBU digital into the Theta CB3 HD (again using Theta Gen VIII Series 3 DAC for front left and right speakers.
First, keep in mind the coaxial, toslink and AES/EBU connections into the CB3 HD were designed years ago, and the CB3 HD over these connections will only handle up to 96-24. Also, the current CB3 HD DSP works at 48-24, with higher rez downsampled – even though my CB3 HD has the new digital out card which handles to and including 192-24. Since my ripped SACD ISOs are all 176-24 I can’t even try them via the the Bryston BDP-1 AES/EBU digital into the Theta CB3 HD (using Theta Gen VIII Series 3 DAC for front left and right speakers). I tried some 96-24 in this manner, and this method is inferior sounding to both of the other connection methods described above. Not surprising as from an objective standpoint with top notch speakers, monoblock amps, and the Gen VIII, this was to be expected.
Two channel Dell 8500/JRiver over HDMI to the CB3 HD sounds surprisingly good though! If I didn’t have the Bryston BDP-1 I would I think be quite happy using JRiver for this. But the Bryston BDP-1 bnc digital to Gen VIII clearly wins and is my favored method for two channel.

OK. I just compared playing via JRiver some ripped two channel SACD ISO files vs. two channel 176-24 PCM files that I previously converted from ISO to DFF to FLAC 176-24 stereo. Again, playing from PC via JRiver over HDMI into CB3 HD. Darn. Sounds better
using the ISO vs the two channel FLAC file. But keep in mind that these FLAC two channel files played via the Bryston BDP-1 sound the best of everything - but that if I can get JRiver to convert from SACD ISO direct to FLAC, this should sound even better for ripped SACD two channel.

I was able to figure out how to rip with JRiver, the latest beta version, direct to FLAC using the Options and DSP features to convert to
FLAC stereo 176-24. But I didn't see any special filter to apply in doing this conversion. When JRiver plays a ripped SACD ISO file, it automatically applies an appropriate filter. How do I get this filter to apply when I am converting from ripped SACD ISO stereo file to FLAC 176-24?

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post #60 of 840 Old 05-28-2013, 10:24 AM
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Quote:
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I was able to figure out how to rip with JRiver, the latest beta version, direct to FLAC using the Options and DSP features to convert to FLAC stereo 176-24. But I didn't see any special filter to apply in doing this conversion. When JRiver plays a ripped SACD ISO file, it automatically applies an appropriate filter. How do I get this filter to apply when I am converting from ripped SACD ISO stereo file to FLAC 176-24?
Under Options, Audio, Advanced, Configure Input Plug-in, you can select the filter used for converting DSD to PCM. (FLAC is just losslessly compressed PCM, so it applies there too)

I suggest using the 24kHz filter, as the others leave all the ultrasonic noise in the output.
And once you have filtered out the ultrasonic noise, I don't see any reason to go above 88.2kHz, as anything above 44.1kHz will have been filtered out. (88.2kHz can store frequencies up to 44.1kHz)
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