DAC bypass or not? - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 5 Old 09-01-2013, 09:04 PM - Thread Starter
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Hi guys, I have a pioneer vsx 823k receiver with polk RTI 10s and am currently using my computer to stream audio to it via HDMI from the graphics card. It is currently set up as a 2 channel stereo system and sounds quite good at the moment. Though when I play at loud levels I hear a bit of distortion which is odd, I'm assuming its the computer that is causing this with electrical noise or something. If I get an external dac, will that bypass the one in the pioneer? Also will this give me better sound quality and possibly fix this distortion issue. Thanks
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post #2 of 5 Old 09-02-2013, 03:27 AM
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Originally Posted by iduhfuse View Post

Hi guys, I have a pioneer vsx 823k receiver with polk RTI 10s and am currently using my computer to stream audio to it via HDMI from the graphics card. It is currently set up as a 2 channel stereo system and sounds quite good at the moment. Though when I play at loud levels I hear a bit of distortion which is odd,

The most likely sources of audible distortion in a typical audio system including one that includes a PC are

(1) Your ears
(2) Your speakers
(3) Your amplifiers
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I'm assuming its the computer that is causing this with electrical noise or something.

My day job is being a computer tech and I have no idea how you reached this conclusion.

Do you know the difference between hum, noise, and distortion?

The most obvious omission in your system is a good subwoofer which will take a load off your AVR and your speakers.
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If I get an external dac, will that bypass the one in the pioneer?

Yes, but the way DACs are used in AVRs they are basically guaranteed to be free of audible distortion. Digital sources can't overdrive them because of how digital works.
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Also will this give me better sound quality and possibly fix this distortion issue. Thanks

What does this noise, hum or distortion actually sound like?
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post #3 of 5 Old 09-02-2013, 04:47 AM - Thread Starter
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Well, put it this way. I can put the same song from the CD player, crank it and it won't distort. Same song from my computer, and when playing high notes at loud volumes, it will begin to emit a slight click or cackle, not constantly but in some very high notes of the song. For example, I was playing Adele and at one point in the song as her voice peaked it clicked/cackled there. I know my speakers aren't damaged and my amp is perfectly capable at playing at these levels. Any ideas?
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post #4 of 5 Old 09-02-2013, 05:32 AM
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Originally Posted by iduhfuse View Post

Well, put it this way. I can put the same song from the CD player, crank it and it won't distort. Same song from my computer, and when playing high notes at loud volumes, it will begin to emit a slight click or cackle, not constantly but in some very high notes of the song. For example, I was playing Adele and at one point in the song as her voice peaked it clicked/cackled there. I know my speakers aren't damaged and my amp is perfectly capable at playing at these levels. Any ideas?

Check the sliders in the computer's playback mixer for its audio interface. What you describe can happen if one of them is set too high.
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post #5 of 5 Old 09-02-2013, 03:25 PM
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Originally Posted by iduhfuse View Post

Well, put it this way. I can put the same song from the CD player, crank it and it won't distort. Same song from my computer, and when playing high notes at loud volumes, it will begin to emit a slight click or cackle,

It sounds like a media player software problem. What media player are you using? Have you tried different output settings with it?
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