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LUMIN - Audiophile Network Music Player


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18 minutes ago, smodtactical said:

Sorry I am totally confused? Are you talking about a hardware button on the actual unit?

 

Sorry I should be clearer.  There are two "About" functions in the Lumin app.  Please find the one under the U1 MINI renderer setting.

Peter Lie

LUMIN Firmware Lead

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Hey peter just did the factory reset, set my terminator to AES, and again no sound out of the u1 mini. Coax and usb out work perfect.

 

I took the AES out of the u1 mini and plugged it into my di20HE and it works perfect. Same goes for AES out of my sotm dx usb.

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Ive noticed something with the current V13 software that the system doesn't shut down the USB drives when it's had some stream from Spotify playing from a MAC desktop despite the stream being paused - I would have thought the 15min set in the app would still apply. Roon seems to work fine with its timeout settings to power off. Ill double check Tidal playback and pause in the App to see if that happens there or not.  

 

So should it power off with any stream from the setting the app?

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I'll look into it, but probably not much can be done.

 

Roon pause is not really a pause.  Roon actually teardown the RAAT stream after pausing for a while.

Peter Lie

LUMIN Firmware Lead

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From a Lumin user: https://forum.psaudio.com/t/lumin-firmware-update-version-13-0-release-date-june-2nd-2020/17296/6

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The LEEDH Processing technology is a game changer - great natural sounding music. Some may find that there is no need for a preamp. In my system I use my LTA MZ3 preamp because of the tonal quality it adds to the music. I set the volume controls of my DS DAC and MZ3 to their highest level and control volume using the LUMIN. The canon shots on the 1812 Overture are the clearest I’ve ever heard them.

 

Peter Lie

LUMIN Firmware Lead

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From a Lumin X1 user: https://www.whatsbestforum.com/threads/lumin-x1-enabling-an-even-simpler-yet-better-sounding-system.29425/page-2#post-653038

 

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I'd call it greater clarity and immediacy, lower-yet apparent distortion, together with larger-yet soundstaging in all dimensions and more solid imaging--the usual audiophile desiderata. This effect seems audible on all signals from low-quality internet radio streams up through high resolution programs.

 

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Even at extremely low volume levels (didn't want to wake my sleeping spouse, of course!) of between 8 to 10 on the 100-point volume scale ("normal" high volume for me in this system is about 72 or so), the added clarity and transparency were amazing. It's like I suddenly had Quad 57s or some other speaker known for extreme transparency even at very low volume levels.

The Leedh volume processing can be toggled on and off at will within the Lumin App for comparison. The switchover takes less than five seconds. Thus, pretty good A/B testing of the Leedh processing is available. (This assumes, of course, that Lumin has not somehow "dumbed down" the volume control when Leedh is not engaged in the new firmware. There's no way to quickly A/B the new version of the firmware with the old version.) The difference is the proverbial "night and day." And this is even though the direct connection before seemed surprisingly sonically purer than using the special relay-controlled volume control of my Benchmark HPA4 "preamp" which I thought was pretty special indeed at the time.

 

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The combination of upsampling/resampling everything via Roon's DSP engine to DSD 512, Leedh Volume processing by the Lumin X1, and the elimination of the DSD to PCM filtration in Roon has enabled my system to push past some threshold into a realism I've never before achieved. On much program material, there is an absence of artifacts and a see-through realism which allow me to suspend disbelief to an extent never before possible. This is even true for much low-bit-rate internet radio material.

 

Peter Lie

LUMIN Firmware Lead

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1 hour ago, wklie said:

The combination of upsampling/resampling everything via Roon's DSP engine to DSD 512, Leedh Volume processing by the Lumin X1, and the elimination of the DSD to PCM filtration in Roon has enabled my system to push past some threshold into a realism I've never before achieved.

Huh? What?  My understanding is that in order to apply the LeedH volume control the X-1 has to convert back to PCM, Peter is my understanding incorrect?

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I must be missing something here, but as I understand it, the raison d'être for implementing LeedH processing is to negate some of the poor effects of using a traditional digital volume control when feeding power amps directly.

 

Anyone who claims that turning on LeedH volume and setting the volume control of their preamp to max results in dramatically better sound must have a different setup than I do.

 

No digital volume control still sounds better in my system and I'm using electrostatic speakers that are about as transparent as they come.

I tried it and the straight DAC output is way more dynamic and just better.

Why put another bit of processing in the chain unless you have to?

 

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Not all dacs are great power amp drivers, and not all dac / amp « weddings » are of a tonal balance such as to forget the preamp either. Not counting sometimes the subjective gain in that the voltage gain of the preamp always brings something of presence, energy, scale ... which would be hard to exist on a lot of dac / amps couples. Pure transparency is not the only attribute to remake a credible musical restitution very often, everything is compromises, subtle balance as well as personal tastes.
 

Anyone who thought about selling his preamp has already try some direct connection between dac and power amp, and I think the dac volume control is not the first thing that went wrong if the preamp went back quickly in the audio chain. Thinking about a direct link can rhyme with change of audio elements, it’s a global approach that leedh processing can be a part of.

 

@barrows no digital volume control in DSD, converting back to pcm is a necessity, like it would be with all digital volume controls. Maybe leedh processing is not the best toy for the dacs that only sound good with a dsd playback :D But I think it’s worth a try anyway.

 

U1mini>Tambaqui>Coincident Statement Linestage> Luxman M800’s>Andra3

U1mini>Ayon Skylla2>Bez FB13 or Classé Sigma 2200i>Marten Duke2

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4 hours ago, barrows said:

Huh? What?  My understanding is that in order to apply the LeedH volume control the X-1 has to convert back to PCM, Peter is my understanding incorrect?

That's right, DSD is converted to PCM , Leedh processed and output to the DAC is PCM high rate as much as allowable, suppose.

 

In my case, DSD128 plays to DAC at 384 according to the DAC display.

 

 

AS Profile Equipment List        Say NO to MQA

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8 hours ago, barrows said:

Huh? What?  My understanding is that in order to apply the LeedH volume control the X-1 has to convert back to PCM, Peter is my understanding incorrect?

 

On some of the Lumin models including X1, DSD output to analog does not go through PCM conversion even if using Leedh processing volume.  This involves a proprietary technique to realize on our hardware architecture.

 

For digital output, DSD is converted to PCM for digital volume.

Peter Lie

LUMIN Firmware Lead

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I tried again tonight.

Used my preamp at full gain + LeedH.

Didn't sound as good.

Switched off the LeedH in my iPad application and nearly blew my speakers.

One horrible, really loud CRACK!

 

@wklie

please look at this :(

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1 hour ago, EvilTed said:

I tried again tonight.

Used my preamp at full gain + LeedH.

Didn't sound as good.

Switched off the LeedH in my iPad application and nearly blew my speakers.

One horrible, really loud CRACK!

 

@wklie

please look at this :(

This is one reason why volume control should be in the analog domain. The other reason, is when an application 'loses it', and presents white noise at 0db direct into power amplifiers, much to the detriment of tweeters. I'm too conservative to allow myself such a situation to ever occur, so would consider Leedh for volume matching (non Ux models) and let the pre-amp do the volume control work.

AS Profile Equipment List        Say NO to MQA

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4 hours ago, wklie said:

On some of the Lumin models including X1, DSD output to analog does not go through PCM conversion

Hmmm... 🤔 is this really correct. From what I can see from the block chart of ES9038 Pro, all incoming signals will be treated as oversampled PCM before going into the DAC.

 

ess_es9038pro-block-diagram.thumb.png.eaddbadbfab7a376cd1068703fbece65.png

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At least the Lumin CPU / FPGA is not converting DSD to PCM in this case.  I do not claim to know what really happens inside the ESS blackbox, but I believe no decimation occurs.  Many experts have tried to guess what exactly ESS does, in this forum and others.

Peter Lie

LUMIN Firmware Lead

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10 hours ago, wklie said:

At least the Lumin CPU / FPGA is not converting DSD to PCM in this case.  I do not claim to know what really happens inside the ESS blackbox, but I believe no decimation occurs.  Many experts have tried to guess what exactly ESS does, in this forum and others.

The generally accepted understanding is that the ESS chips take in DSD, and do not change it to a lower sample rate, they just re-modulate it to a multibit single, but keep the sample rate high.  So, unlike DACs like Chord (excepting DAVE) which turn DSD into 352.8 or 705.6 PCM, ESS keeps the original sample rate and just turns it into a form of "DSD wide", so it sounds like Peter is saying that this is how the Lumin X-1 handles LeedH volume control in their FPGA, then sending that "DSD wide" signal to the ESS chips.  Peter, please correct me if my understanding is incorrect.

ROON: DSD 256-Sonore opticalModule-Signature Rendu optical--Bricasti M3 DAC--DIY Purifi Amplifier-Focus Audio FS888-JL E 112 sub-Nordost Tyr USB, DIY AC, Iconoclast XLR & speaker cables, Synergistic Orange Fuses, Dark Matter system clarifiers.                                                       

                                                                                           SONORE computer audio

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Why is there even an option to turn on or off “Leedh Processing Volume” in the settings if it is so much more superior to the old processing? Why not just market the new firmware as “now implementing the far superior Leedh processing for digital volume control” and just keep the “Volume Control” On/Off setting? Did we need another thing to decide to turn on or off? The only valid reason to keep the old digital volume control as an option is if there is some situation where it is better than Leedh processing. Is there such a situation where I should select the non-Leedh processing if I have turned on “Volume Control” in the settings?

 

Cheers,

Gus

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You're right, actually we do not need this setting at all.  The only reason for its existence is for users to do an A/B comparison and hear for themselves whether this actually yields better SQ than the traditional way to do digital volume.  As expected, some experts dismissed it from a viewpoint of standard digital signal processing.  Arguing whether something should sound better or not based on some theory is usually futile.  The important thing is to hear it.

 

That being said, the use of DAC chip built-in volume makes use of a feature that our implementation of Leedh Processing Volume does not have.  DAC chips may do smoothing between volume transition.

Peter Lie

LUMIN Firmware Lead

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8 hours ago, barrows said:

The generally accepted understanding is that the ESS chips take in DSD, and do not change it to a lower sample rate, they just re-modulate it to a multibit single, but keep the sample rate high.  So, unlike DACs like Chord (excepting DAVE) which turn DSD into 352.8 or 705.6 PCM, ESS keeps the original sample rate and just turns it into a form of "DSD wide", so it sounds like Peter is saying that this is how the Lumin X-1 handles LeedH volume control in their FPGA, then sending that "DSD wide" signal to the ESS chips.  Peter, please correct me if my understanding is incorrect.

 

That's what I guess how ESS does things.  As for what happens in Lumin X1 Leedh Processing Volume for DSD analog output, I cannot disclose how it achieves this internally, so I cannot confirm or deny the above.

Peter Lie

LUMIN Firmware Lead

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2 hours ago, The Computer Audiophile said:

I prefer choice. I like to decide what I like best rather than have someone else decide what I like best. 

You are of course correct sir: choice is preferred; and part of the hobby for me is trying out all the permutations looking for the *best* sound. I have to stop myself sometimes and quit A/B’ing all the choices though, and just enjoy the music.

 

As for the Leedh implementation on my Lumin U1 Mini connected to my preamp via USB: it is slightly audibly better sounding to my ears when using Leedh processing and setting the DAC/pre-amp to a unity gain setting, versus turning volume control off on the U1m and using the digital volume control of the DAC/pre-amp. However, until Lumin implements IR (or IP, or bluetooth) remote control capability on their products, my Harmony Elite remote, controlling my preamp (and everything else in my system) is preferred over an app’s volume slider. 

 

@wklie thank you again for your candid answers. Always a pleasure to read.

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On 6/18/2020 at 11:37 PM, wklie said:

I'll look into it, but probably not much can be done.

 

Roon pause is not really a pause.  Roon actually teardown the RAAT stream after pausing for a while.

The issue is not with roon, if I play from my Mac with Spotify client the setting in the lumin app to power down after 15 mins of no music is not happening, same from my wife’s computer where there is no roon client installed.

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