AVS Forum banner
1 - 18 of 18 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
154 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I would like to improve the sound quality of my computer music only setup. My setup is as follows:

*Dell 3000 Dimension 2Gig Ram

* Windows XP

*External Hard Drive (Music is Stored On)

*Soundblaster Audigy LS

*Analog "Y" connector to:

*Dell Desktop Speakers &

*HK AVR500 Receiver (Has digital capabilities)

*Monster Speaker Selector

*3 Volume Controls

*3 Sets of Speakers (JBL in wall) & two sets outdoor speakers

*Itunes most of my music is ripped MP3 192 kbps. I began switching to Apple Lossless

* I control Itunes from my iPhone.


I recently became unhappy with the sound. I was getting some distortion and switched from using my motherboard soundcard and installed an Audigy a friend had (disabled the soundcard's and deleted the driver). I also changed a 25 year old NAD receiver that I was using with a 10 year old Harmon Karden that I replaced in my home theater. Better but not quite there. I listen at my computer 75% of the time & the other locations 25% of the time.


I tried to hook the soundcard's 1/8 connect to the digital coaxial with a 1/8 mono to RCA cable (needed to use a RCA connector and an additional RCA cable) on the HK with no luck.


What's are my next steps to get improved sound at both my desktop (I know speakers) and the HK?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,809 Posts

Quote:
Originally Posted by Displaced Husker /forum/post/19505171


(I know speakers)

that is where I'd start. Especially if you listen 75% in front of your computer. You can easily do better than Dell speakers. . .
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
154 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Is the Y connector and analog is OK? Do you have any recommendations on powered speakers? Logitech-Klipesh-Harmon Karden (except they look funny)seem to be what the masses like.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,809 Posts

Quote:
Originally Posted by Displaced Husker /forum/post/19505813


Is the Y connector and analog is OK? Do you have any recommendations on powered speakers? Logitech-Klipesh-Harmon Karden (except they look funny)seem to be what the masses like.

I don't know what your budget is, or where you live, or what you like in sound, but for a reasonably priced 2.1 computer speaker system I think it would be hard to beat these at their sales prices. Assuming you have space to place them.

http://www.parts-express.com/pe/show...631&FTR=sub-80

http://www.parts-express.com/pe/show...number=300-650


for $140 total they work pretty well. You can better, but, that would cost more money.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
154 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I have a nice JVC office system that I don't use that will work great I will just add a subwoofer to it.


Next questions

Does leaving the JVC & the Harmon Karden on with no input use a lot of energy or cause damage to the units?


My living room has a Niles volume control fed by two speaker wires - wired to in-wall speakers. Can a subwoofer be added after the Niles?


Is using the analog out from the computer and the Y the best way to go or would I see a dramatic improvement in what I am doing by going digital?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,809 Posts
Leaving the units on all the time will use some energy. Shouldn't do them any harm.


Don't know about the niles.


Most built in computer soundcards are not very good. You might benefit by using digital output. Only you can decide if the difference is dramatic. FWIW I go digital out from the computer, and think it is worth it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,809 Posts
There are digital audio splitters. I've not used one, but assume they work.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11 Posts
I hooked up my motherboard soundcard to my onkyo receiver via the coaxial port. I then use my Droid as an interface for my computer. Beautiful sound. I did, however rip all my CD s to Wav for superior fidelity. I'm running Magnepan MMGs for my speakers. Yum. :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
154 Posts
Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I believe iTunes is causing the source of my dissatisfaction. I can play a CD on my computer and it sound great. The same files through iTunes sound no where near the same. It is muffled and the voices sound distorted. My only issue is I like to control the sound with my iPhone.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
34 Posts

Quote:
Originally Posted by Displaced Husker /forum/post/19511948


I believe iTunes is causing the source of my dissatisfaction. I can play a CD on my computer and it sound great. The same files through iTunes sound no where near the same. It is muffled and the voices sound distorted. My only issue is I like to control the sound with my iPhone.

Have you tried media monkey?? it is leagues better than itunes.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,809 Posts
If you have not already, disable all playback effects in iTunes. Especially turn off "sound enhancer". That might help. And compare a lossless CD rip with the CD. They should sound the same.


You could google media monkey, or foobar, and iphone app. They are probably out there.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
154 Posts
Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I have had all those items turned off and have changed to lossless and tried all the other formats. It is a night and day difference between playing the CD and any format.


I also tried enabling the motherboard's sound card- probably a bit worse.

I ripped to the internal hard drive instead of the remote hard drive.

I tried the Windows Media player a bit louder but still a difference.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,809 Posts
That is strange. Bits are bits - you wouldn't think it would matter if they were read from a CD or read from a HD. Maybe Windows is treating them differently. I'm a Mac guy, but believe windows xp uses something call k-mixer. Google it - my understanding is you want to try and bypass it for best sound.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,270 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by Displaced Husker
I have had all those items turned off and have changed to lossless and tried all the other formats. It is a night and day difference between playing the CD and any format.


I also tried enabling the motherboard's sound card- probably a bit worse.

I ripped to the internal hard drive instead of the remote hard drive.

I tried the Windows Media player a bit louder but still a difference.
Try to use ASIO mode. If your sound card does not support it natively, install asio4all driver.
 
1 - 18 of 18 Posts
Top