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    Using HQPlayer With Aurender and Other Music Servers

     

     

    Warning: This article isn't for the faint of heart. I guarantee you it'll be interesting, as it breaks new ground in home digital audio playback, but plug n' play it isn't. I'll do my best to cover everything one needs to know to implement what I'm about to discuss. 

     

    A couple years ago I started using high end digital signal processing in the form of convolution filters for room correction and upsampling. I was a major skeptic and refused to believe DSP was any better than the terrible demos I'd heard in the past. That all changed when I connected with Mitch Barnett of Accurate Sound, who used my room measurements to design custom convolution filters. Now, I don't look back at the old days as primitive, rather I look at today as a time when I have another tool in my audio toolbox. Powerful DSP that can be enabled or disabled as I wish and that's capable of giving me subjectively and objectively better audio quality 99% of the time. 

     

    In addition to convolution for room correction, I've achieved tremendous results using HQPlayer's upsampling capabilities into NOS DACs built to take advantage of HQPlayer and all the horsepower of a modern computer. I know this route isn't for everyone and it isn't my only source of reference level playback, but it's far too good to be denied. 

     

    Now for the bad news. High end digital signal processing requires serious horsepower and advanced capabilities, neither of which are found in many of today's best music servers. By music servers, I'm talking about "canned" solutions that are plug n' play, and more reminiscent of an audio component than a computer. Examples in this category are products from Aurender, Innuos, Lumin, Auralic, and others I'm not purposely omitting. Some servers have raw horsepower, but lack the software framework for high end DSP, while others don't support it due to lack of customer interest, among other things. Either way, I love great music servers and I love great DSP. 

     

    Note: Some people will undoubtedly suggest, "just use Roon." Well, that's one option but it's shortsighted. There are so many great music servers in HiFi that offer personalized support, fantastic interfaces, terrific sound quality, etc... and this combination is well beyond anything offered by Roon Labs. 

     

    With that in mind I've been on a mission to encourage manufacturers to support DSP and I've been conducting my own research into a solution that isn't dependent on any single manufacturer changing its product(s). Ideally, a component would exist that receives audio via USB, AES, S/PDIF, etc... runs DSP, and outputs that to a DAC via USB, AES, S/PDIF etc... The component would support 65,000+ tap convolution filters and upsampling via HQPlayer. Currently this component is only a dream. It could be done, but nobody has done it. 

     

    Realizing there are many other people using Aurender servers who'd love to try convolution or HQPlayer upsampling, but have no interest in giving up their current server, I started thinking about options. I know Aurender servers support output on traditional digital interfaces such as AES, S/PDIF, and USB, but also offer output over Ethernet via Ravenna. This was originally implemented to output audio to the Merging Technologies NADAC that features Ravenna input. Ravenna is a standards-based solution for streaming low latency audio over one's network (AES67 is a subset of Ravenna). It's used to record concerts and albums at studios around the world every day.

     

    Note: For more information about Ravenna, listen to my interview with Merging Technologies' Dominique Brulhart here

     

    Given that Aurender supports Ravenna output, and I record my podcast using a Merging Technologies Anubis A to D / D to A converter that supports Ravenna, I first tested an Aurender N20's Ravenna capabilities. This was uncharted territory because of how Ravenna is setup. If using a NADAC, there's an app to select an Aurender as the input device and all is well. Using any other Ravenna device it's the Wild West and you're on your own. It wasn't easy (all the details later) but I got it to work. I sent audio from the Aurender N20 to my Merging Anubis and from there out to headphones or my main audio system. 

     

    That was my proof of concept, if you will. I knew I could send and receive Ravenna using an Aurender and a Merging Anubis. But, it didn't get me any of the convolution or upsampling capabilities that lead me down this road in the first place. Now, for the pièce de résistance, I wanted to send audio from the Aurender directly to my CAPS twenty PC via Ravenna, have my PC receive the audio using the Merging Audio Device driver, hand the audio over to HQPlayer via ASIO input for processing, then have HQPlayer send the audio out to a Sonore signatureRendu SE optical running HQPlayer NAA, then out to a DAC via USB. Technically I could output from my PC via USB to a DAC, but HQPlayer doesn't support input and output from ASIO devices simultaneously (input on Merging ASIO / output on Denafrips ASIO). I could use WASAPI, but that has it's own issues with DSD support and I'd rather use a fiber optic connection to my HiFi with a Rendu.

     

     

    Let me quickly go over the before and after connection details, so we are all on the same page. 

     

    Before
    Aurender N20 > USB Out > USB DAC

     

    After
    Aurender N20 > ethernet Out > CAPS 20 PC > Sonore Rendu > USB DAC

     


    Astute readers may be thinking that they'll just download the Merging Audio Device driver and give this a go. However, a Merging hardware device is required on one's network because one needs a PTP Master clock in order for this to work. In my case, the Anubis is my PTP master clock, and doesn't route any audio. For servers without Ravenna support, it's also possible to use the Merging HAPI interface to accept AES audio and convert it into Ravenna. The HAPI would also serve as the PTP Master clock. 

     

    The hardware part of this is fairly straight forward. I inserted my CAPS Twenty PC and a https://www.sonore.usSonore Rendu between the Aurender and my DAC. The PC for high powered DSP and the Rendu to receive the audio over the network. 


    Here are three diagrams to give readers a visual of what's going on. I couldn't decide which visual would be easiest for everyone to understand, so I'll post all of three. It's the same system I'm using, but without/without some pieces that may confuse people.

     

     

     

    Aurender With DSP Numbered.jpg 

     

     

     

     

    Aurender With DSP Vertical.jpg     Aurender With Switch Components.jpg

     

     

     

     


    Let's look the image with numbers one through four. 

     

    1. This is the Merging Anubis, connected to my network with an Ethernet cable. This device only serves as the PTP Master clock. No audio routes through it.
    2. The Aurender N20's only connection is to my network with an Ethernet cable. It sends all audio out via Ravenna. 
    3. The audio is received over the network by the Merging Audio Device driver on my CAPS Twenty PC. Audio is sent to HQPlayer via its ASIO input for DSP, then out of HQP to a Network Audio Adapter.
    4. This is a Sonore signatureRendu SE optical connected to my network via fiber optic cable. The Rendu is running HQP's NAA, so it's an endpoint capable of receiving audio from HQPlayer running on my PC. The Rendu sends audio out its USB interface to my USB DAC. 

     

     

    Note: Ravenna can require one to use managed network switches. In fact, I wouldn't go down this path without a managed switch. Fortunately, Merging Technologies offers downloadable configuration files for Cisco SG300 series and some Dell PowerConnect switches. I'm using a fully managed UniFi network from Ubiquiti, which is said to have issues with Ravenna / AES67 due to lack of good QoS. I haven't experienced any issues that cause Ravenna to not work, but I'll say that Roon doesn't work well when the core is running on the same PC as the Merging Audio Device driver. The error messages in Roon point to what I believe could be a network mDNS issue. Removing the Merging software enables Roon to run perfectly once again. 

     


    Setup via Software

     

    Setting up / routing the audio inputs and outputs via software is where this gets tricky. I'll start in position 1 in the aforementioned numbered diagram. 

     

    1. The Merging Anubis must be setup for Auto sample rate mode, Low (64) latency, and PTP Master enabled. No audio routing connections need to be made. 

     

    01 Anubis Auto Sample Rate Latency PTP Master.png

     

     

     

    2. The Aurender N20 must have Ravenna enabled and should have native DSD output disabled. Merging's Ravenna driver is said to only support native DSD, no DoP, but there should be an asterisk by that statement. It's entirely possible to send either native DSD or DSD over PCM (DoP) from the Aurender to a PC running the Merging Audio Device driver. Both work without any issues. However, the Merging Audio Device driver can't be set into DSD mode manually, it has to be set by another application that's the Master ASIO Host. In this case, the Master ASIO Host is HQPlayer and HQP can set the driver up to receive native DSD. The issue is that HQP won't automatically switch back to PCM when PCM is played, in this configuration (more on this later). Setting HQP to receive any sample rate PCM and to look for the DoP marker on the ASIO input works perfect to receive DSD up though DSD128. The limit of the Merging driver is 384 kHz, thus the DSD128 DoP input limit. HQP can output up through DSD1024 and this output has nothing to do with the receiving of DoP. 

     

     

    02a Aurender Ravenna Enabled.jpg   02b Aurnder native dsd diabled.jpg

     

     

     


    3. I'm going to skip the PC setup for right now, and detail it below item four below.

     

    4. The Sonore Rendu is simple to setup in NAA mode through its web interface. Enable HQPlayer NAA and that's it. There's no configuration to be done.

     

    Now back to item three. I'm detailing it here because it's very involved and requires a bit more space than items 1, 2, and 4. This is where I spent most of my time troubleshooting and where, I'm guessing most people would give up if they didn't have the following information. I spent the time so you don't have to :~)

     

    On the PC, running Windows 10 Professional, I installed the Merging Audio Device driver. This also installs Merging's ANEMAN and MTDiscovery apps. ANEMAN is critical, but MTDiscovery is only helpful to see if the devices are found on one's network (for our purposes here). I also installed HQPlayer desktop on this PC. Once the apps are installed, the following configuration will receive the audio, route it to HQP, and output to a Rendu. 

     

    A. In the Merging Audio Device Panel, select the RAV/AES67 tab. The other three tabs won't work for our purposes here. I use the Unite tab when recording my podcast and I love it, but Unite isn't setup to work with a Linux Ravenna source according to Merging Technologies. Make sure the correct network adapter is selected for Primary. I disconnected my second network adapter because ANEMAN kept telling me I had more than one ANEMAN PC on the network and I didn't want to see the messages anymore. Set Latency to 16/32/64. The Master ASIO Host should be HQPlayer4Desktop. I do this because then it's possible to set things up for native DSD if I ever want native DSD. Apps will only be listed in this dropdown box after launched at least one time after the MAD driver is installed. Buffer size should be 256 [smpl]@44.1kHz/48kHz. The other options can be left alone. 

     

    03a MAD Panel.jpg

     

     

     

     


    B. This is biggest challenge. If you can get through this, you're well on your way to audio bliss. Open ANEMAN and select Ne Sample Rate Zone. Drag the Aurender N20 into the Master position (with the crown), and drag the PC and Merging hardware into the main sample rate zone box. 

     

    03b ANEMAN New Sample Rate Zone.jpg   03c ANEMAN New Sample Rate Zone Drag.jpg

     

     

     


    Select all three devices by clicking and dragging your mouse over them in the newly created sample rate zone. This will populate the right side matrix with all the inputs and outputs of the devices. Yes, it's very pro audio looking and the antithesis of plug n' play HiFi. 

     

    03d ANEMAN matrix view.jpg

     

     

     

     

     

    We need to connect the Left and Right channel outputs of the Aurender N20 to the left and right channel inputs of the Merging Audio Device driver running on the PC. This is done by expanding the Aurender Audio Device outputs 1-8 to expose all of the first 8 outputs. Then, click in the square where ALSA Output 1 on the Aurender and ASIO Input 1 on the PC intersect. Do the same thing with ALSA Output 2 and ASIO Input 2. These are the left and right channels. The boxes should be highlighted green like the image below. 

     

    Then click the blue button that says Connect Unicast. Unicast will send audio directly from the Aurender to the PC, rather than to many devices in a multicast group. 

     

    03e ANEMAN click boxes green.jpg

     

     

     

     

    IMPORTANT: If you receive the following error message, "Device incompatibility: frame size or media" don't worry. I struggled with this for days. The solution is to play any 24 bit content on the Aurender. Just press play on a 24 bit track for like 10 seconds. Then, highlight the output and input boxes again and select Connect Unicast. 

     

    03f ANEMAN error message.png

     

     

     

     

     


    When the Aurender outputs are connected to the PC inputs, the boxes will highlight orange and an arrow will be placed from the Aurender to the PC in the left window of ANEMAN.

     

    03g ANEMAN connection made orange.jpg

     

     

     

     

     

    Open HQPlayer and open its settings from the File menu. 

     

    Under Output Device Settings, make sure the Backend is NetworkAudioAdapter and the Device is the Rendu (or whatever you have running HQPlayer NAA). The Channels and bits etc.. are DAC dependent and not critical for this article. 


    Under Input Device Settings, select ASIO for the Backend and Merging Audio Device for the Device. Make sure DoP is selected for SDM Pack. The output modes are all DAC dependent and not the subject of this article. Click OK.

     

    03h HQPlayer settings menun.jpg

     

     

     


    On the main HQPlayer screen, in the box that says Content Source URI, type audio:default/0/2 and hit enter. The queue area below should then list the song as audio:default/0/2 and the Length as 0:00. Click on this "song" and it should change to being highlighted blue. HQPlayer is now ready to receive any sample rate and two channels of audio on its ASIO input. 

     

    03i hqplayer audio device 0 2.jpg

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Press play on the Aurender and everything should work. Notice the Green dot in the MAD Panel and green writing that it's running and the clock is locked. Also note the orange boxes in ANEMAN have now turned blue when audio is successfully playing. The HQP "song" is blue and HQP displays the input sample rate (DSD128) it's receiving the from the ASIO driver (352.8 kHz PCM DoP) and the output rate it's sending to the NAA (DSD256). Convolution and upsampling through HQPlayer, on music from the Aurender, and out to a Rendu running NAA is now setup. 

     

    03j Pres play and look at driver and hqp window and aneman.jpg

     

     

     

     


    Final Thoughts

     

    I absolutely love this capability. Applying room correction convolution filters and upsampling to music from an Aurender has been on my list of wants for a long time. I now have it working on all sample rates from 44.1 kHz through 352.8 kHz, and DSD64/DSD128 (I can output any sample rate from HQPlayer including PCM at 1,536 kHz and DSD1024). All can play seamlessly with auto sample rate recognition and auto sample rate changing. Auto sample rate is a big deal as is support for higher sample rates. There are some possible solutions, such as using an RME AES card to accept audio via AES from the Aurender or other music server, but getting auto sample rate detection and changing to work will be an uphill battle. Using Ravenna, it all works great. 

     

    If I had other music servers that only supported outputs such as AES, I'd use a Merging HAPI to receive the AES and convert that into Ravenna. From there, I'd process it identically to the system I laid out above. 

     

    I still don't know of a solution that can accept USB audio from a music server and send that on to a PC for DSP or convert it into Ravenna. 

     

    I'm also working an article using HQPlayer embedded to receive UPnP audio from other music servers and output that to an audio device. This could even be direct from a NAS or from one of the many great music servers that outputs UPnP/DLNA.

     

    HQPlayer isn't the only DSP solution that should work with the aforementioned setup. Mitch Barnett's Hang Loose Convolver should work, but one will be limited on the output because it doesn't output anything over the network. If using ASIO input, sending audio to a different ASIO output may be problematic. I need to do additional testing. 


    I'll now sit back, grab my iPad running Aurender Conductor and select music for playback just like I would if the N20 was connected directly to my DAC via USB or AES. That's the beauty of this. I can use the Aurender like nothing has changed, but now the audio is going through state of the art DSP in the form of room correcting convolution and upsampling. 


     

     

     



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    54 minutes ago, The Computer Audiophile said:

    I still don't know of a solution that can accept USB audio from a music server and send that on to a PC for DSP or convert it into Ravenna.

     

    using a Raspberry Pi 4 as a USB DSP-DAC

    https://www.diyaudio.com/forums/pc-based/341590-using-raspberry-pi-4-usb-dsp-dac.html

     

    Playback Windows Audio on a Pi4 over USB ver1.zip

    https://www.diyaudio.com/forums/pc-based/341590-using-raspberry-pi-4-usb-dsp-dac-8.html#post5904418

     

    I guess that might be the closest thing out there?

     

    As always the detection of changing sampling rates could be tricky.

     

    There's yet another example that looked like this

     

    https://imxdev.gitlab.io/tutorial/Audio_loopback_between_two_imx_using_USB_UAC2/

     

    Someone was trying to work on a new version but that didn't go anywhere since 2017

     

    https://lore.kernel.org/patchwork/cover/848755/

    https://lore.kernel.org/patchwork/patch/848754/

    https://www.mind.be/fosdem19/2019-02-03-FOSDEM2019-C-usb-audio-class-3.html

     


     

    22 minutes ago, The Computer Audiophile said:

    I'm also working an article using HQPlayer embedded to receive UPnP audio from other music servers and output that to an audio device. This could even be direct from a NAS or from one of the many great music servers that outputs UPnP/DLNA.

     

    That's awesome, I'm looking forward to that article because someone else reported that streaming from JRMC to HQPlayer Embedded via UPnP turned out to sound pretty darn good

     

    https://www.my-hiend.com/vbb/showthread.php?13157-piCorePlayer6-1-0-Xenomai-44-1-48KHz雙機入門簡易安裝教學&p=244284#post244284

    K5xGdaS.jpg

     

    Rooted Android devices with an app called AirMusic could stream Apple Music to HQPlayer Embedded via UPnP, I guess that's a fairly decent solution when compared to other alternatives.

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    5 minutes ago, seeteeyou said:

     

    using a Raspberry Pi 4 as a USB DSP-DAC

    https://www.diyaudio.com/forums/pc-based/341590-using-raspberry-pi-4-usb-dsp-dac.html

     

    Playback Windows Audio on a Pi4 over USB ver1.zip

    https://www.diyaudio.com/forums/pc-based/341590-using-raspberry-pi-4-usb-dsp-dac-8.html#post5904418

     

    I guess that might be the closest thing out there?

     

    As always the detection of changing sampling rates could be tricky.

     

    There's yet another example that looked like this

     

    https://imxdev.gitlab.io/tutorial/Audio_loopback_between_two_imx_using_USB_UAC2/

     

    Someone was trying to work on a new version but that didn't go anywhere since 2017

     

    https://lore.kernel.org/patchwork/cover/848755/

    https://lore.kernel.org/patchwork/patch/848754/

    https://www.mind.be/fosdem19/2019-02-03-FOSDEM2019-C-usb-audio-class-3.html

     


     

     

    That's awesome, I'm looking forward to that article because someone else reported that streaming from JRMC to HQPlayer Embedded via UPnP turned out to sound pretty darn good

     

    https://www.my-hiend.com/vbb/showthread.php?13157-piCorePlayer6-1-0-Xenomai-44-1-48KHz雙機入門簡易安裝教學&p=244284#post244284

    K5xGdaS.jpg

     

    Rooted Android devices with an app called AirMusic could stream Apple Music to HQPlayer Embedded via UPnP, I guess that's a fairly decent solution when compared to other alternatives.

     

    Good stuff @seeteeyou. I'm looking at the Pi solution you linked to right now. 

     

    Sometimes it's fun to dig into this and get our hands dirty, while other times it's just fun to press play and not thing about it. 

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    Looking at the Pi solution, it has the right idea, but requires software installation on the host music server. This won't work with a Linux server that doesn't allow root access by end users unfortunately.

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    3 minutes ago, AudioDoctor said:

    Geez, speaking of convoluted...

     

    Manufacturers: It doesn't work that way...

    Chris: I'm going to make it work that way...

     

    Ha!

     

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    50 minutes ago, AudioDoctor said:

    Geez, speaking of convoluted...

     

    Manufacturers: It doesn't work that way...

    Chris: I'm going to make it work that way...

    That is what makes Chris who he is, he never accepts no for an answer!

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    Very interesting. Thanks for this.

    But it looks like a lot of efforts for not much: if you have to use a PC in such a set up you need to make sure that the sound quality and/or the navigation software provide real added value compared to a PC also used as a source.

    I would think the main interest of using a standalone player is precisely not to have to go through the use of a PC and have a ready to play solution.

    That being said, it's a shame that these network players do not include a digital loop to insert a DSP processor like the old Slimdevice Transporter use to have. Now that DRC and upsampling is common use, it should come as a standard.

    Looks to me that your idea of having your NAS/server compute the DRC and HQPlayer is a simpler idea, Upnp or not.

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    Roon => HQP => HQP NAA running on a intel pc stick => Holo May has been the easiest way for me to enjoy 1.5M PCM on my may. Roon core and HQP run can run on the same windows or mac. Without Roon, I dont think I would have ventured into the world of HQP. 

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    On 8/19/2021 at 1:49 AM, Fyper said:

    Now that DRC and upsampling is common use, it should come as a standard.

    ^ that

     

    That's the reason I don't use my MicroRendu anymore. Rather than using another extra device (MicroRendu which cannot do DSP) I just connect a  repurposed old Macbook Pro to my DAC directly. For DSP filters (Acourate FIR filters in my case) I use system-wide HLC (Hang Loose Convolver). Remote controlling done via Screen Share from a current Macbook Pro.

     

    For local files I use Audirvana (v3.x) and HLC AU plugin which changes sample rates as needed.

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    Fascinating, I can't believe I didn't see trying this path this when I was trying (unsuccessfully) to integrate HQP with an Innuos Zenith. 🙄

     

    so if I understand ... this requires

     

    1. a server capable of communicating using Ravenna, is this limited to Aurender or Merging Technologies?
    2. a Merging Technology box of some sort on the network to function as the master clock, am I correct that this will be a several $1000 piece of it?
    3. doe it require an NAA implementation of HQP or could you have a USB DAC direct to your PC ?

     

     

    I really don't see where this is worth the hassle when you can just use any number of  programs on your CAPs PC as the music server. (I know you mentioned that) . Even if Aurender is somehow a superior sounding server, don't you lose that superiority by funneling the output through another server running additional software that is going to up sample and apply convolution? If it is all just so you can use the  Aurender interface seems again to me not worth the hassle just for that.

     

    I see the fun in getting it to all work. I don't see where you gain anything by doing it this way 

     

     

     

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    8 minutes ago, bbosler said:

    Fascinating, I can't believe I didn't see trying this path this when I was trying (unsuccessfully) to integrate HQP with an Innuos Zenith. 

    With an Innuos, you could go AES out to a Merging HAPI then Ravenna to an HQP server. The HAPI would be a D to D and clock. 
     

    10 minutes ago, bbosler said:

    I really don't see where this is worth the hassle when you can just use any number of  programs on your CAPs PC as the music server. (I know you mentioned that) . Even if Aurender is somehow a superior sounding server, don't you lose that superiority by funneling the output through another server running additional software that is going to up sample and apply convolution? If it is all just so you can use the  Aurender interface seems again to me not worth the hassle just for that


    It isn’t for everybody. 

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    I  too use custom made DSP solutions for my system as in convolutions installed in Roon.  They work great.  It s allows lower frequencies to play nice with the rest of the Freg Resp. and hear all the bass detail the system is capable of delivering.   I guess I'm not sure why this is not a popular option?

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    6 hours ago, The Computer Audiophile said:

    With an Innuos, you could go AES out to a Merging HAPI then Ravenna to an HQP server. The HAPI would be a D to D and clock. 

     

    Pretty sure the  Innous only have  ethernet and USB .

     

    Not trying to bust your chops, but I really am trying to understand why anybody would pay big $$ for a streamer then process the hell out of the stream. I thought one paid big bucks for a streamer because the digital output was somehow better than you can get from "lesser" streamers?  Seems counterproductive to pay for an expensive streamer then run the output through several more boxes before the signal gets to your DAC. 

     

    Are you saying that the Aurender feeding HQP this way sounds better than Roon or some other program feeding HQP with the same settings? Again, I'm not trying to give you a hard time, I just don't understand the purpose of the exercise other than to say you got it to work. .. which is fine

     

    I understand it's "not for everybody, I just don't see why anybody who wanted HQP would go to such lengths and $$  when there are a multitude of one box solutions..... of course other than just for the fun of doing it

     

    thanks for pushing the envelope though

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    33 minutes ago, bbosler said:

     

    Pretty sure the  Innous only have  ethernet and USB .

     

    Not trying to bust your chops, but I really am trying to understand why anybody would pay big $$ for a streamer then process the hell out of the stream. I thought one paid big bucks for a streamer because the digital output was somehow better than you can get from "lesser" streamers?  Seems counterproductive to pay for an expensive streamer then run the output through several more boxes before the signal gets to your DAC. 

     

    Are you saying that the Aurender feeding HQP this way sounds better than Roon or some other program feeding HQP with the same settings? Again, I'm not trying to give you a hard time, I just don't understand the purpose of the exercise other than to say you got it to work. .. which is fine

     

    I understand it's "not for everybody, I just don't see why anybody who wanted HQP would go to such lengths and $$  when there are a multitude of one box solutions..... of course other than just for the fun of doing it

     

    thanks for pushing the envelope though


    Think about it this way, people have spent $20,000 for a high end server and it has full support by the manufacturer. They love the server. Adding another tool in the toolbox by enabling DSP this way is now an option. They don’t have to sell the server at substantial loss and they can stick with what they like. 
     

    This article is also a proof of concept article. This is a start, to get the ball rolling on using DSP with components that “don’t” support it and without getting rid one one’s components. 

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    And for my next trick, I will show you how to modify a Ferrari for off-roading!  
     

    just kidding, good job getting it to work. I don’t think I would have figured it out.

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    Wow!! This is all probably slightly over my head / technical capabilities, but within reach of learning. 
    As a devout Aurrender customer/ fan, it’s at least exciting to see what can be possible if one is willing to acquire all the necessary additional gear and then also roll up the sleeves and self educate to get it all to work. 
    For the layman such as myself,,, is it worth all the effort and investment?? 
    My curiosity is would someone similar to myself be better off going outside of Aurrender (or other similar brands) to achieve DSP, Convolution, and HQPLAYER vs. staying with our beloved brands and Implementing all of the aforementioned? 
    The reason I chose Aurender over a Rendu/SoTM/ Roon/ HQPlayer type of solution in the first place was due to its high level of performance coupled with essentially plug and play simplicity. 

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    Quote

    Ideally, a component would exist that receives audio via USB, AES, S/PDIF, etc... runs DSP, and outputs that to a DAC via USB, AES, S/PDIF etc... The component would support 65,000+ tap convolution filters and upsampling via HQPlayer. Currently this component is only a dream.

    Maybe this topic deserves its own tread. Anyway I’m trying to understand. 

    @The Computer Audiophile

    Is Ethernet a possible input in such a device?

     

    What does The Sonictransporter lack in order to be such a device? 

    It has Roon, where you add the room correction filters. It has optional HQplayer embedded built in.

    Yes it lacks AES/SPDIF, but apart from that, isn’t it pretty close to your dream ? 

     

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    The one significant downside of Ravenna (and presumably the other AES67 protocols) from a consumer perspective is that you need a managed switch (or switches) to prevent flooding of your home network with multicast traffic. That’s beyond most people.  

     

    To fully extract the benefits of AES67/DANTE/RAVENNA, you need a well-engineered ethernet network, and controlled computing environments on the sending/receiving side.

    The use of DiffServ (DSCP) is highly recommended as it is supported by most managed switches and requires only very moderate administrative interaction as most switches already come with a pre-configured setup for DSCP support.

     

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ravenna_(networking)

     

    From here:
    “Professional audio applications demand tight synchronisation between all devices and audio streams. While playback synchronisation in most applications requires sample accuracy, it has been the goal for RAVENNA to optionally provide superior performance by providing phase-accurate synchronisation of media clocks according to AES-11; this would render the separate distribution of a reference word clock throughout the facility or venue obsolete. In RAVENNA, synchronisation across all nodes is achieved through IEEE1588-2008 (also referred to as Precision Time Protocol or PTPv2), another standard protocol which can be operated on IP. PTPv2 provides means for synchronising local clocks to a precision in the lower nanoseconds range with reference to a related master clock – provided that all participating switches natively support PTPv2. But even without native PTP support, the achievable precision – while varying depending on size and bandwidth utilisation of the network – will be more than sufficient to reach sample accurate synchronisation across all nodes. Sample-accurate synchronisation can even be reached across WAN connections, when local master clocks are synchronised to GPS as a common time domain reference.”


    So can this be achieved by technology from the white rabbit project, and then avoiding using Revanna ?

    That HW you’re using as a PTP Master clock is quite expensive, but I have no idea if other HW can be used to achieve the same ? Did you investigate ?

     

    The Revenna is limited to 384kHz. Is this an issue ?

     

    All RAVENNA devices must have the ability to connect using a ‘generic’ profile, which has been defined as follows:

    • Channels – 1..8
    • Bit depth (word length) – 16 and 24
    • Sample frequency – 48kHz
    • Frames per packet – 64 (1.33 ms packet time)

     

     

     

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    2 hours ago, R1200CL said:

    Is Ethernet a possible input in such a device?


    Anything is possible, but which protocol are you going to use to send and receive audio? Ravenna?

     

     

    2 hours ago, R1200CL said:

    What does The Sonictransporter lack in order to be such a device? 

    It has Roon, where you add the room correction filters. It has optional HQplayer embedded built in.

    Yes it lacks AES/SPDIF, but apart from that, isn’t it pretty close to your dream ? 

     

    It lacks the ability to input audio. 
     

    Tons of people are over or never got into Roon. As I said in the article, using Roon for this isn’t an option. 

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    On 8/28/2021 at 2:58 PM, The Computer Audiophile said:

    Anything is possible, but which protocol are you going to use to send and receive audio? Ravenna?


    I guess any AES67 protocol. They should all be able to work together. But maybe Revanna is the only one capable of DSD255 ?

    I notice there is OEM PCB’s available. 
    And here is an interesting product as well, but I suppose you still need a master word clock. Or maybe not
    Maybe something to test, as it’s relatively cheap. 


    My understanding is that just to be able to enter the Revanna product line, you need to spend al least 2K.

     

    With AES67 I guess, you could connect to i2s directly into a DAC. 
     

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