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Build Streamer for $350


alice

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Ok, so finally decided on building my own to replace the source duties of the squeezebox touch.

 

3 options:

 

  • CAPS V3
  • Daphile
  • VORTEX BOX

Now the requirements are:

 

  • Has to be able to stream DSD from my NAS
  • Should have a capable app/3rd party app for android to control
  • ease of use
  • extremely quick control and playback through the app, I hated the lag with the squeezebox
  • may be have wireless capability, not mandatory.

 

 

If I decide to take the Daphile way, can I just install it on usb and run that way without a hard drive?

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A Vortex Box can definitely do it; it depends if you like the apps. I think

gGenerally people use MPD with it. Although I think there is a Beta of JRiver for Linux. If not, there will be at some point.

 

You might want to try MPD on one of your present pieces of hardware first.

Main listening (small home office):

Main setup: Surge protector +_iFi  AC iPurifiers >Isol-8 Mini sub Axis Power Conditioning+Isolation>QuietPC Low Noise Server>Roon (Audiolense DRC)>Stack Audio Link II>Kii Control>Kii Three >GIK Room Treatments.

Secondary Listening: Server with Audiolense RC>RPi4 or analog>Matrix Element i Streamer/DAC (XLR)+Schiit Freya>Kii Three .

Bedroom: SBTouch to Cambridge Soundworks Desktop Setup.
Living Room/Kitchen: Ropieee (RPi3b+ with touchscreen) + Schiit Modi3E to a pair of Morel Hogtalare. 

All absolute statements about audio are false :)

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A Vortex Box can definitely do it; it depends if you like the apps. I think

gGenerally people use MPD with it. Although I think there is a Beta of JRiver for Linux. If not, there will be at some point.

 

You might want to try MPD on one of your present pieces of hardware first.

 

 

I'am not familiar with Linux, so this might not be ideal for me.

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Really the decision isn't between a CAPSv3 and Daphile or Vortexbox as the CAPSv3 is a piece of hardware usually recommended to run Window and the other two are (primarily) software (though you can buy pre-installed Vortexbox).

 

Your best solution would probably to build the CAPSv3 hardware, and then you can try the three options - Windows with J.River; Daphile and Vortexbox - with little expense.

 

Eloise

Eloise

---

...in my opinion / experience...

While I agree "Everything may matter" working out what actually affects the sound is a trickier thing.

And I agree "Trust your ears" but equally don't allow them to fool you - trust them with a bit of skepticism.

keep your mind open... But mind your brain doesn't fall out.

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??? CAPS parts are already selected by CC, and you cannot buy an SOtM card but yes, one can certainly build a box for $350.

Yes very much so I would think, need to be careful with part selection.

 

Also is dapfile compatible with most new motherboards that support onboard wireless ac ?

Forrest:

Win10 i9 9900KS/GTX1060 HQPlayer4>Win10 NAA

DSD>Pavel's DSC2.6>Bent Audio TAP>

Parasound JC1>"Naked" Quad ESL63/Tannoy PS350B subs<100Hz

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??? CAPS parts are already selected by CC, and you cannot buy an SOtM card but yes, one can certainly build a box for $350.

CAPS hardware is around $350 ... the Windows and JRiver licenses add around $200 (according to Chris' original article).

Eloise

---

...in my opinion / experience...

While I agree "Everything may matter" working out what actually affects the sound is a trickier thing.

And I agree "Trust your ears" but equally don't allow them to fool you - trust them with a bit of skepticism.

keep your mind open... But mind your brain doesn't fall out.

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I thought the SoTM card was an essential part of the CAPS design ? Without it you have nothing more than a fanless, low-powered (except for the later models) computer that boots off an SSD. Inevitably I'm missing something here - please advise.

Just one more headphone and I know I can kick this nasty little habit !

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If you're going the Windows route, you could always use the free excellent well supported (though klunky to setup) Foobar2000 music player instead of JRiver, to keep the costs down. It has plugin components for both DSD support and UPnP/DLNA network streaming.

 

John

We are far more united and have far more in common with each other than things that divide us.

-- Jo Cox

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I thought the SoTM card was an essential part of the CAPS design ? Without it you have nothing more than a fanless, low-powered (except for the later models) computer that boots off an SSD. Inevitably I'm missing something here - please advise.

There are 4 CAPSv3 designs.

 

The basic C.A.P.S. v3 Topanga is well chosen but off the shelf components.

 

The second and third level C.A.P.S. v3 Lagoon and C.A.P.S. v3 Carbon take the Topangas design and add the SotM USB card (and other additional considerations).

 

Eloise

Eloise

---

...in my opinion / experience...

While I agree "Everything may matter" working out what actually affects the sound is a trickier thing.

And I agree "Trust your ears" but equally don't allow them to fool you - trust them with a bit of skepticism.

keep your mind open... But mind your brain doesn't fall out.

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Or you could just punt if your DAC supports USB and buy a SOTM SMS-100 for $450. That assumes you have Minimserver and can get it to work with DSD. Or

for $500 buy an Oppo 103 and use SMB over Ethernet with your NAS to play DSD natively with no problems whatsoever or convert to PCM for output to external DAC...might even work for DSD out cause I lose sync if I forget to set the Oppo to convert DSD to PCM but I don't have an external DSD DAC to verify.

Regards,

Dave

 

Audio system

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No comments guys?

You've missed out any drive?

Eloise

---

...in my opinion / experience...

While I agree "Everything may matter" working out what actually affects the sound is a trickier thing.

And I agree "Trust your ears" but equally don't allow them to fool you - trust them with a bit of skepticism.

keep your mind open... But mind your brain doesn't fall out.

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No comments guys?

 

 

Well, besides there's no OS drive (you might want to stick in a USB thumb?) that looks like a standard small form factor PC. Nothing audio specific about it. It is not fan-less either. The entry level CAPS V3 is. Key to CAPS that your list of components is missing is..

 

a) an embedded CPU type mobo with low power CPU allowing passive cooling (fanless); CAPS ZUMA uses other means (heatpipes to chassis)

b) a PICO PSU (fanless)

c) OS DISK (SSD) filtering

d) an audio purpose USB card (SOtM)

 

The CAPS V3 builds are using lasts years tech & thought. CC is working on V4 'as we speak'. Perhaps you could wait a while?

 

If not you could try (as a variation to CAPS):

a) Gigabyte Bay Trail (J1900). Has built in 'audio purpose' USB port on mobo. Mind: Linux community has reported lots of issues with Bay Trail embedded boards (Daphile?), windows no problem. Should run XP / Win7 / Win8 + Foobar/JRiver fine

b) get a 12V PICO from ebay (cheap)

c) get a plain, good grade SSD, but power it externally, using an ANKER USB battery pack (E4 or similar); forget SOtM SS filters

Put it in a simple case... this should finish you WAY inside your budget

 

If money/funds left you could perform these upgrades:

d) get Paul Pang PPA V2 USB3 audio grade USB card (instead of SOtM USB card); if you plan to do this upfront, you could also choose a different Bay Trail mobo (other than Gigabyte, you might like the ASUS J1900; again mind the Linux issues)

e) put a plain 12V bench supply in front of the PICO (instead of the switching brick)

 

...and you have yourself something that states 'audio'....

Just my 2 cts'..

Hans

Bits to analog: Server [i9-10850k; Win10Pro, Roon Core + HQPlayer4 >all DSD256x] -> mRendu -> Lampi GG

Analog to sound: ASR Emitter II Exclusive, Battery -> Dynaudio Confidence 20 + 2 REL G2's

Details: Audio System

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Hi Hans, I was looking at getting the J1900 didn't know it had a audio purpose USB port.The Paul pang USB is not that expensive. Do you think it will be close to performance to the sotm ? Also do these audiophile USB cards make a difference.

Thinking I will install vortebox instead of daphile will I still have motherboard issues ?

Why do I need ssd if is can run of USB, music will be streamed through my nas.

Finally can this build match the antipodes DX :)

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Alice,

 

Just did a check-up and conclude I made an error. The Gigabyte 'DAC-UP' technology (the audio purpose USB port) is NOT in the Bay Trail embedded boards of Gigabyte (it's in the B85N & up). Apologies for not having my facts straight.

 

What makes a difference depends on what makes a difference for you. Some say everything matters. Fact is you come from an SB touch (not a high end transport to many) and convenience is a priority it seems.. An entry type CAS with upgrade options seems a logical step & inside your budget. That is what Eloise suggested. I merely suggested that you could shave off some of the costs (PPA instead of SOtM and an Anker on your SSD instead of SOtM SS filters).

 

Mind Vortexbox and Daphile are audio purpose Linux distro's. Make sure your Bay Trail board runs with them.... I have not read up on these specifics so I do not know. You might want to drop a question in the Daphile thread on this board on what Bay Trail board to use.. Vortexbox has a big community... likely someone has tried similar.

 

There is an entire thread on PPA vs SOtM:http://www.computeraudiophile.com/f10-music-servers/soul-music-universal-serial-bus-industry-standard-cables-connectors-and-communications-protocols-between-computers-and-electronic-devices-card-vs-ppastudio-universal-serial-bus-industry-standard-cables-connectors-and-communications-protocols-between-computers-and-electronic-devices-card-v2-19325/

 

You could boot & run off USB fine. Assuming you stream to your DAC using USB also, that might require some attention / tweaking (traditionally, you do not want various traffic to mingle) ..

 

Hans

Bits to analog: Server [i9-10850k; Win10Pro, Roon Core + HQPlayer4 >all DSD256x] -> mRendu -> Lampi GG

Analog to sound: ASR Emitter II Exclusive, Battery -> Dynaudio Confidence 20 + 2 REL G2's

Details: Audio System

Link to comment
Well, besides there's no OS drive (you might want to stick in a USB thumb?) that looks like a standard small form factor PC. Nothing audio specific about it. It is not fan-less either. The entry level CAPS V3 is. Key to CAPS that your list of components is missing is..

 

a) an embedded CPU type mobo with low power CPU allowing passive cooling (fanless); CAPS ZUMA uses other means (heatpipes to chassis)

b) a PICO PSU (fanless)

c) OS DISK (SSD) filtering

d) an audio purpose USB card (SOtM)

 

The CAPS V3 builds are using lasts years tech & thought. CC is working on V4 'as we speak'. Perhaps you could wait a while?

 

If not you could try (as a variation to CAPS):

a) Gigabyte Bay Trail (J1900). Has built in 'audio purpose' USB port on mobo. Mind: Linux community has reported lots of issues with Bay Trail embedded boards (Daphile?), windows no problem. Should run XP / Win7 / Win8 + Foobar/JRiver fine

b) get a 12V PICO from ebay (cheap)

c) get a plain, good grade SSD, but power it externally, using an ANKER USB battery pack (E4 or similar); forget SOtM SS filters

Put it in a simple case... this should finish you WAY inside your budget

 

If money/funds left you could perform these upgrades:

d) get Paul Pang PPA V2 USB3 audio grade USB card (instead of SOtM USB card); if you plan to do this upfront, you could also choose a different Bay Trail mobo (other than Gigabyte, you might like the ASUS J1900; again mind the Linux issues)

e) put a plain 12V bench supply in front of the PICO (instead of the switching brick)

 

...and you have yourself something that states 'audio'....

Just my 2 cts'..

Hans

 

Hi Hand,

 

Ian confused about the linear bench power supply build.

 

Can you please link what I will need from a power supply side of things.

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Hi Hand,

 

Ian confused about the linear bench power supply build.

 

Can you please link what I will need from a power supply side of things.

 

Read the CAPS V3 recipes. These use PICO PSU + brick. You're DONE.

 

If you feel like upgrading, you can replace the brick with something better (linear or battery). CC uses a very expensive battery for that upgrade. With some minor DIY there are alternatives.

Examples:

Maplin : Tír Na HiFi • View topic - AUDIO PC: Pico psu based power

Voltcraft : Computer Audio Forum • View topic - In praise of the linear bench power supply: tweaks

 

Hans

Bits to analog: Server [i9-10850k; Win10Pro, Roon Core + HQPlayer4 >all DSD256x] -> mRendu -> Lampi GG

Analog to sound: ASR Emitter II Exclusive, Battery -> Dynaudio Confidence 20 + 2 REL G2's

Details: Audio System

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