Flacs are inferior to wavs? - Page 22 - AVS Forum
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post #631 of 652 Old 05-06-2014, 10:51 AM
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Originally Posted by eljr View Post

So, if I have a dedicated Lap top for my music, this becomes my music server. I play a Flac file in Foobar2000 and connect that to????? A Dac?

Why not connect directly to your processor/receiver directly (S/PDIF or HDMI if multichannel)? Do you feel it has inferior DAC conversion or are you using an analog only amp and need DAC?

Also are you only feeding one zone with the PC near? I use mine to feed 4 zones.
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post #632 of 652 Old 05-06-2014, 11:10 AM
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Originally Posted by William View Post

Why not connect directly to your processor/receiver directly (S/PDIF or HDMI if multichannel)? Do you feel it has inferior DAC conversion or are you using an analog only amp and need DAC?

Also are you only feeding one zone with the PC near? I use mine to feed 4 zones.

Yeah, 2 channel analog.

I am a little confused as to why I need a DAC. You can play two channel into headphones or for that matter use the headphone jack with a RCA left/right ending that can go right to the preamp.


?????

What you got back home, little sister, to play your fuzzy warbles on? I bet you got little save pitiful, portable picnic players. Come with uncle and hear all proper! Hear angel trumpets and devil trombones. You are invited.
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post #633 of 652 Old 05-06-2014, 01:05 PM
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Originally Posted by eljr View Post

Yeah, 2 channel analog.

I am a little confused as to why I need a DAC. You can play two channel into headphones or for that matter use the headphone jack with a RCA left/right ending that can go right to the preamp.


?????

You can use analog out on your PC. Most will say that an external DAC (or digital out to your Processor/Receiver) will be higher quality with less chance of noise/interference than the DAC found in a laptop.
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post #634 of 652 Old 05-06-2014, 01:42 PM
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Originally Posted by William View Post

You can use analog out on your PC. Most will say that an external DAC (or digital out to your Processor/Receiver) will be higher quality with less chance of noise/interference than the DAC found in a laptop.

So it's really as simple as playing a song in Windows Media player and making a connection with a simple headphone jack to a RCA left/right and plugging in?

A simple wire like this can be done for les than $5

The advantage of going through separate DAC is only possible noise resolution?

PLus I'd have no volume control as there would be no preamp.

What you got back home, little sister, to play your fuzzy warbles on? I bet you got little save pitiful, portable picnic players. Come with uncle and hear all proper! Hear angel trumpets and devil trombones. You are invited.
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post #635 of 652 Old 05-07-2014, 09:49 AM
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Originally Posted by eljr View Post

PLus I'd have no volume control as there would be no preamp.

You'd use WMP's volume control. Or whatever player you decide to use.

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post #636 of 652 Old 05-07-2014, 12:49 PM
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Originally Posted by sivadselim View Post

You'd use WMP's volume control. Or whatever player you decide to use.
A good addition to that is using a "multimedia" keyboard which has dedicated volume control buttons. Without it you risk playing something at super loud volumes and by the time you find and change the volume control of the player you may go deaf smile.gif. Or damage your gear. With the keyboard, you can just mash the mute button or volume down. Likewise as tracks play if you need to boost their levels or reduce, you can use the keyboard to do that while WMP runs in the background.

Ultimately it is better to use an outboard stereo pre-amp as the volume control will be smoother. I have a Rotel that I use for this. You should be able to find used stereo gear like that at good prices.

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post #637 of 652 Old 05-07-2014, 12:55 PM
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Originally Posted by amirm View Post

...Ultimately it is better to use an outboard stereo pre-amp as the volume control will be smoother. I have a Rotel that I use for this. You should be able to find used stereo gear like that at good prices.

I vote and do this. You are playing Russian Roulette using the PC for attenuation.
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post #638 of 652 Old 05-07-2014, 01:26 PM
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Quote:
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sivadselim View Post

You'd use WMP's volume control. Or whatever player you decide to use.
A good addition to that is using a "multimedia" keyboard which has dedicated volume control buttons. Without it you risk playing something at super loud volumes and by the time you find and change the volume control of the player you may go deaf smile.gif. Or damage your gear. With the keyboard, you can just mash the mute button or volume down. Likewise as tracks play if you need to boost their levels or reduce, you can use the keyboard to do that while WMP runs in the background.

Ultimately it is better to use an outboard stereo pre-amp as the volume control will be smoother. I have a Rotel that I use for this. You should be able to find used stereo gear like that at good prices.

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Quote:
Originally Posted by amirm View Post

...Ultimately it is better to use an outboard stereo pre-amp as the volume control will be smoother. I have a Rotel that I use for this. You should be able to find used stereo gear like that at good prices.

I vote and do this. You are playing Russian Roulette using the PC for attenuation.

I agree that using the software player's volume control is a crude way to do things. For me, it just wouldn't suffice.

It is possible that WMP (or whatever software is used) provides keyboard shortcuts that could at least provide some degree of keyboard control.

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post #639 of 652 Old 05-07-2014, 01:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sivadselim View Post

I agree that using the software player's volume control is a crude way to do things. For me, it just wouldn't suffice.

Personally... I wouldn't want to sit at any device with my fingers poised to control volume anticipating an earjaculation.
It really would take away from the enjoyment of the music for me.
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post #640 of 652 Old 05-07-2014, 01:46 PM
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eljr has a related thread going, here, btw:

http://www.avsforum.com/t/1530577/how-to-play-downloads-through-your-hi-fi

just an fyi
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post #641 of 652 Old 05-07-2014, 02:03 PM
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Thanks for the heads up... still doesn't change my opinion.
Throw in a CD and hit play.
Place an LP on the platter and drop the arm.
Tune to your favorite FM radio station.

Having to worry about how/if/when the volume will change every few minute is like asking your dog to make sure your toaster doesn't burn your bagel. The music and bagel is important. Get a better toaster or a smarter dog. biggrin.gif
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post #642 of 652 Old 05-07-2014, 05:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sivadselim View Post

It is possible that WMP (or whatever software is used) provides keyboard shortcuts that could at least provide some degree of keyboard control.
WMP has a set of APIs that control its interface. Keyboard drivers tap into that to control it. For volume to use the Windows API to control the master volume.

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post #643 of 652 Old 05-07-2014, 05:59 PM
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Originally Posted by Ratman View Post

Thanks for the heads up... still doesn't change my opinion.
Throw in a CD and hit play.
Place an LP on the platter and drop the arm.
Tune to your favorite FM radio station.

Having to worry about how/if/when the volume will change every few minute is like asking your dog to make sure your toaster doesn't burn your bagel. The music and bagel is important. Get a better toaster or a smarter dog. biggrin.gif

JRiver has a good equalise volume feature that can analyse your whole music collection on the computer and can play them back without large variations in volume between different albums. Good for when listening to selected genres of music.
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post #644 of 652 Old 05-07-2014, 06:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by amirm View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by sivadselim View Post

It is possible that WMP (or whatever software is used) provides keyboard shortcuts that could at least provide some degree of keyboard control.
WMP has a set of APIs that control its interface. Keyboard drivers tap into that to control it. For volume to use the Windows API to control the master volume.

That's not what I mean. I mean just the simple keyboard shortcuts that are part of the software (whatever software). Like the up and down arrows for turning the volume up and down, for example. 'P' for pause. Etc..

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post #645 of 652 Old 05-07-2014, 06:31 PM
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Originally Posted by sivadselim View Post

That's not what I mean. I mean just the simple keyboard shortcuts that are part of the software (whatever software). Like the up and down arrows for turning the volume up and down, for example. 'P' for pause. Etc..
Here you go: http://windows.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/media-player-keyboard-shortcuts#1TC=windows-7

Note that for any of this to work, WMP needs to have focus: i.e. be the active window. If you use a hardware keyboard, the media keys work all the time whether it is in the foreground or not. THat is why I am encouraging you to go in that direction smile.gif.

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post #646 of 652 Old 05-07-2014, 06:37 PM
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THat is why I am encouraging you to go in that direction smile.gif.

Not me, amirm.

And of course a hardware keyboard with volume control would be better for many, many reasons. My only point was that it's not absolutely necessary. That's all.

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post #647 of 652 Old 06-07-2014, 11:29 PM
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Windows "level" control on a recording device is really crude.

Seems to operate from 0 to 100 in increments of 5.

0 is zero. 1~5 is the first level, 6~10 the second, and so on. Not really sure of the increments but it definately is not 100 steps.

Maybe it is the fault of the on-board sound hardware. Maybe not.

Would anyone here know?

I'll be back later...


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post #648 of 652 Old 06-08-2014, 01:58 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by amirm View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by sivadselim View Post


Ultimately it is better to use an outboard stereo pre-amp as the volume control will be smoother.

Agreed, in principle. Professionals and serious amateurs doing audio production have been doing critical listening using computer audio interfaces for over a decade.

Devices like this one have become widely used by them:

http://www.amazon.com/Griffin-Technology-NA16029-Multimedia-Controller/dp/B003VWU2WA/ref=sr_1_1



The above device provides a very nice volume control knob for your computer, entirely in the digital domain

Another:

http://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail/LevelPilot?utm_source=Google&utm_medium=PPC



The above device provides a very nice volume control knob for just about anything, this time entirely in the analog domain. Connect it between your audio interface analog output and a integrated amp, power amp, or active speakers.

http://www.amazon.com/Audio-Patch-Passive-Volume-Attenuator/dp/B000T9K8ZO/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1402217099&sr=8-2&keywords=tc+electronic+level+pilot



The above device also provides a very nice volume control knob on a control panel for just about anything, this time entirely in the analog domain. Connect it between your audio interface analog output and a integrated amp, power amp, or active speakers.

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/controller/home?O=&sku=825429&gclid=CP7FoZ7z6b4CFYxlOgodHCwA4w&Q=&is=REG&A=details



Pretty much the same, but with more buttons for more control.

http://www.amazon.com/PAC-LC-1-Remote-Amplifier-Controller/dp/B0002J226O/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1402217757



The above is the consumer version with RCA jacks

Here is another, a little nicer:

http://www.goldpt.com/sa2.html








Finally:

http://shop.emotiva.com/products/control-freak



Available in both RCA and XLR versions


Also:

Simply use an AVR. Connect its digital or analog inputs to your PC. You can get suitable AVRs for just over $100.
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post #649 of 652 Old 06-08-2014, 02:19 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RayDunzl View Post

Windows "level" control on a recording device is really crude.

Seems to operate from 0 to 100 in increments of 5.

0 is zero. 1~5 is the first level, 6~10 the second, and so on. Not really sure of the increments but it definately is not 100 steps.

Maybe it is the fault of the on-board sound hardware. Maybe not.

Would anyone here know?

The resolution or step size of any volume control on a windows audio device is dependent on any on-board attenuator in that device. Get a higher quality audio interface and you will probably get a nicer attenuator.

So when you said "Maybe it is the fault of the on-board sound hardware." you nailed it!
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post #650 of 652 Old 06-08-2014, 02:53 AM
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Thank you.

It's got 6 retaskable (input/output/sometimes mic) stereo jacks on the back and two on the front.

I'll live with it then. It seems to do a reasonable enough job for casual observations here.

I'll be back later...


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post #651 of 652 Old 06-09-2014, 08:54 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ratman View Post

Thanks for the heads up... still doesn't change my opinion.
Throw in a CD and hit play.
Place an LP on the platter and drop the arm.
Tune to your favorite FM radio station.


Having to worry about how/if/when the volume will change every few minute is like asking your dog to make sure your toaster doesn't burn your bagel. The music and bagel is important. Get a better toaster or a smarter dog. biggrin.gif

Why would you have to worry about that,any more than you would when playing a CD or the radio or LP?

If it *did* worry you with software playback,you could use a system like replaygain to tag your files and and 'normalize' track-to-track (or album-to-album) level variation upon playback.
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post #652 of 652 Old 06-09-2014, 08:58 AM
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I just rip to FLAC at level 5. I can't hear the difference between it and WAV. FLAC is what I keep for backup, my portable is filled up with LAME v0 MP3 until they start coming out with bigger microSD cards.

I wouldn't say FLAC sounds inferior to WAV unless something goofy is going on with the FLAC encoding or decoding.

Some people claim to hear a difference. I can't. Then again, I don't have super expensive, analytical equipment. FLAC < WAV doesn't really make sense to me.

Last edited by hogger129; 06-17-2014 at 06:13 PM.
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