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Airport Ex. Sounds Much Better and Louder After Re-Plug/Re-Boot... why?

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Hi, great site and forum. Exactly what I've been looking searching for.


Something has come up that is beginning to aggravate me to no end. I've basically moved and began using some new speakers. My system is definitely not mega-buck by "audiophile" standards, so it's not now uber-resolving or anything but I began noticing something that I've never noticed before.


When I unplug and replug my Airport Express, the volume is not only considerably louder but it sounds considerably better. The soundstage moves forward, more air, better decay etc.


For example I've been using Eric Clapton's Unplugged version of Tears in Heaven and the strings sound "pluckier" ..


I use Macbook > itunes > Airport Express > Monarchy M24 DAC via glass toslink


I've read on numerous threads to not use the volume control on itunes, but I've never noticed a difference really until now. It seems after a re-plug I get the sound I really like, then the next time I listen ... it's veiled. I'm pretty sure it's after I use the volume control... or maybe when I change tracks. I've never notice this problem before.


My system, good or bad, always stayed consistent.


Anyone have any ideas why this is happening all of a sudden? Is it the itunes volume truncated the bit-rate? Is it my DAC and a jitter issue?


I'm likely going to just max out the volume on itunes as others suggested, but my amp does not have a remote volume control and I've really liked using itunes as a pre-amp. Living in an old wood framed apartment building and late night listening sessions make this highly desirable.


Thanks, any help would be greatly appreciated.


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Not change tracks would be difficult, but you could leave the volume control alone for a while, right ?


I'm sure you're right btw, but it might be you yourself to be the best one to find out ...


Once again interesting.



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XXHighEnd (developer)

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Guess I have been lucky... I have itunes 8, but I've never had problems with 7 working.


I have it joining my existing network. Using a Linksys WRT5G router 2.4 ghz.... the cheap one. Occasional dropouts, nothing a reset didn't fix. I also changed channels from 1 to 7 or 11 once after Christmas when it stopped working. Supposedly, they're factory set to Channel 1 and when people get them for Christmas the sudden influx of new people on the same channel renders them problematic.


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