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Attaching a Windows PC to a Receiver!!


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David here - I'm thinking about setting up a very simple stereo room in my house!! No surround sound or speakers, No Video!!

I don't have any equipment at all yet.

I also have a room in my house where my Windows PC sits on a table with my monitor (Pretty simple so far)

I enjoy classical, jazz, folk & easy listening music

I have about 500 physical cds and tons of mp3's & flac files stored on external hard drives.

The only way I have any music to listen to is thru my PC, I don't have PC speakers at all, I have a Sumsung SyncMaster 2333hd monitor and use the stereo speakers in it!!

I have an account at Rhapsody that I listen to music the same way.

 

My pc is 5 years old HP basic model with Windows 7, 3 gb of ram. It serves me well but can't be upgraded!! Maxed out on ram! I have plenty of room on internal HD since I store most files on external drives.

 

I mentioned all this info in my 1st thread here when I was getting advice about getting headphones and someone mentioned why don't I incorporate my pc system with my stereo room I'm planning. I didn't give it much thought then but the past few days I've been rolling the idead over in my mind!!

I have Wi-Fi at home but don't want to get into streaming etc, that is way over my head.

What I was thinking is I could move my pc setup into the room where my stereo will be and use cables to attach it to a receiver!!

My stereo setup in the beginning will just consist of a Receiver, Disk Player and Speakers! Very simple I think.

 

Can I get my PC attached to the receiver with just some cables or is there more involved!!

Tks so much for any help - David

Walker Edison 5 Shelf Glass Rack > Pioneer VSX-822k Receiver > Sony BDP-S590 BR Player > Sennheiser HD598

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David,

 

If possibly connect receiver via any digital interface HDMI or SPDIF and Asio or Wasapi drivers.

 

It allows bit perfect playback.

 

Player software should support Asio or Wasapi.

 

Best regards,

Yuri

AuI ConverteR 48x44 - HD audio converter/optimizer for DAC of high resolution files

ISO, DSF, DFF (1-bit/D64/128/256/512/1024), wav, flac, aiff, alac,  safe CD ripper to PCM/DSF,

Seamless Album Conversion, AIFF, WAV, FLAC, DSF metadata editor, Mac & Windows
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To add to audioinventory's reply.

 

As long as your receiver has Toslink optical input or coax digital (most modern receivers will have one or both) you can use the following product:

 

X1 24/192 USB to SPDIF Converter | Peachtree Audio

 

You connect the USB of your old (or new) PC to this and the other end feeds either Toslink or coax digital to your receiver. $149.

 

You can download Foobar for a music player (it is free). That is it. You are playing music up to 192khz/24 thru your system.

 

The Wasapi or ASIO referred to are just setup details to make sure Foobar is putting out identical bits to what is in the music.

And always keep in mind: Cognitive biases, like seeing optical illusions are a sign of a normally functioning brain. We all have them, it’s nothing to be ashamed about, but it is something that affects our objective evaluation of reality. 

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Esldude - Thanks again for your help & Patience, as you can see I grew up in the old analog world of just a left & right input and output!! This is starting to make more sense to me!! David

Walker Edison 5 Shelf Glass Rack > Pioneer VSX-822k Receiver > Sony BDP-S590 BR Player > Sennheiser HD598

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Now going a step further you could get something like this:

 

https://emotiva.com/products/dacs/xda-2-gen2

 

This has a USB input for using your PC as a source (also has other digital inputs that could come from your disc player.) This functions as a DAC, pre-amp, and headphone amp. $299. Of course there are many other similar choices. This is one good example.

 

To go with this you add a dedicated stereo power amp and some speakers.

 

Or you could add merely some self-powered speakers. Like these for one example:

 

https://emotiva.com/products/powered-monitors/stealth-6

 

In this case you have the PC, disc player, Emotiva digital pre-amp, and it feeds powered speakers having built in power amps.

 

My suggestion when putting together a system from scratch is pick your speakers first and work backward. The speaker will determine what size and type amp or receiver you need. The rest on back to the source is easy.

And always keep in mind: Cognitive biases, like seeing optical illusions are a sign of a normally functioning brain. We all have them, it’s nothing to be ashamed about, but it is something that affects our objective evaluation of reality. 

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Esldude - I went to this site "Emotiva" and didn't understand what the xda 2 gen 2 was for but you explained it perfectly.

PS - The XDA 2 looks great to!! And in my price range - Tks, David

Walker Edison 5 Shelf Glass Rack > Pioneer VSX-822k Receiver > Sony BDP-S590 BR Player > Sennheiser HD598

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I also notice the xda2-2 has a headphone input with volume control and a remote control. Lots of good reviews on the 1st generation at Amazon!! Tks, again

Walker Edison 5 Shelf Glass Rack > Pioneer VSX-822k Receiver > Sony BDP-S590 BR Player > Sennheiser HD598

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Of course there are many other similar choices.

 

Nothing wrong with the Emotiva, especially for the money, but here are a few more choices:

 

ifi Micro iDAC but would require volume control (e.g. preamp) for music piped to speakers. The volume control oon the unit is for headphones only.

 

Schiit also makes really good stuff for a good price.

 

It is important to get a DAC (digital analog converter) as part of your set-up. If you are not familiar with DAC's, they convert the digital signal coming from your computer to an analog signal so that you feed that signal to you amps. Practically every device like computers, phones, etc. have DAC chips but they are generally low quality. As such, an external DAC like the Emotiva, iFi, Schiit are a must in order to get decent sound quality. Some very high-end DAC's are priced well over $10,000 (just to demonstrate how important they can be) but the ones listed here as very good starters.

 

Good luck. Lots of good resources here on CA.

Eric


Ubuntu Linux box (i7-12700K, 12 cores, 32GB RAM, Intel X520-DA1 NIC, HQP Desktop) > fiber > MikroTik CRS305-1G-4S+ > fiber > fitlet2 (HQP Embedded OS - NAA) > T+A DAC8 DSD > Rogue Audio DragoN > Klipsch La Scala — digital volume control with HQP, DSP with HQP convolution 

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Esldude, I see how to connect my pc to the xda-2 but not sure how to connect the xda to a receiver. What inputs would you use on the back of the receiver? - Tks

Walker Edison 5 Shelf Glass Rack > Pioneer VSX-822k Receiver > Sony BDP-S590 BR Player > Sennheiser HD598

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Esldude, I see how to connect my pc to the xda-2 but not sure how to connect the xda to a receiver. What inputs would you use on the back of the receiver? - Tks

 

It is the Line Outs on the xda-2, either RCA (unbalanced) or XLR (balanced).

Eric


Ubuntu Linux box (i7-12700K, 12 cores, 32GB RAM, Intel X520-DA1 NIC, HQP Desktop) > fiber > MikroTik CRS305-1G-4S+ > fiber > fitlet2 (HQP Embedded OS - NAA) > T+A DAC8 DSD > Rogue Audio DragoN > Klipsch La Scala — digital volume control with HQP, DSP with HQP convolution 

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Ericuco - I'm with you on the line out of the XDA - 2 but what input do I use on the receiver!! (You guys must be laughing your heads off at my questions!! - Tks, David

Walker Edison 5 Shelf Glass Rack > Pioneer VSX-822k Receiver > Sony BDP-S590 BR Player > Sennheiser HD598

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Ericuco - I'm with you on the line out of the XDA - 2 but what input do I use on the receiver!! (You guys must be laughing your heads off at my questions!! - Tks, David

 

The XDA-2 serves as a preamp (as well as a DAC) which allows you to select different inputs and control the volume. However, you also need an amplifier. The Emotiva speakers mentioned above are "active" speakers meaning they have amplifiers mounted in the speaker boxes. So in that case, you connect the XDA-2 to the speakers using XLR cables. This is not a traditional setup but it will work rather nicely.

 

In a more traditional setup, you would connect the XDA-2 to an amplifier such as the XPA-200 using RCA interconnect cables (unbalanced) or use the XLR (balanced) cables noted above.

 

Some the chain is:

 

Computer > DAC > Preamp > Amp > Speakers

 

In the case of the Emotiva equipment, the XDA-2 serves as both the DAC & Preamp. The "active" speakers serve as the Amp & Speakers. If you decide to go with non-active speakers, then you will need something like the XPA-200 to serve as the Amp.

Eric


Ubuntu Linux box (i7-12700K, 12 cores, 32GB RAM, Intel X520-DA1 NIC, HQP Desktop) > fiber > MikroTik CRS305-1G-4S+ > fiber > fitlet2 (HQP Embedded OS - NAA) > T+A DAC8 DSD > Rogue Audio DragoN > Klipsch La Scala — digital volume control with HQP, DSP with HQP convolution 

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ericuco has it well covered.

 

With the Emotiva XDA you don't really need a receiver. Just power amps or powered speakers. You still could use the Emotiva with a receiver. As ericuco explained, analog outs of the Emotiva could feed any line inputs on the receiver.

 

Also, to be clear, receiver is typically something like a home theater receiver or stereo receiver. Has a tuner, pre and power amps built in as well as some other functions. A power amp just needs a line level input as it does nothing other than boost power of signal it is fed. A pre-amp allows source selection, and volume control (and often these days digital to analog conversion). The pre-typically does not have a tuner, or video functions or other features. If all this was too elementary please forgive me.

 

Of course with modern technology many normal divisions are blurred in many products. You can find many formerly odd or unheard of combinations. I have a power amp that only accepts digital inputs nothing else just for one example. It maintains everything digitally until the power output stage.

 

In any case, don't worry too much about the questions. I think at least 99% of us have been as confused and hazy minded about these things at least once if not more than once. Many of us are happy to pass on as much info as we can to make it easier on others. Sort of gives extra value to our prior suffering if you will.

And always keep in mind: Cognitive biases, like seeing optical illusions are a sign of a normally functioning brain. We all have them, it’s nothing to be ashamed about, but it is something that affects our objective evaluation of reality. 

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If possibly connect receiver via any digital interface HDMI or SPDIF and Asio or Wasapi drivers.

 

It allows bit perfect playback.

 

Player software should support Asio or Wasapi.

 

This is good advice. There's no need to buy anything else, other than cables.

 

You could even use audio out on the PC to any of the RCA inputs on the receiver. It's not perfect, but it will be a lot better than using typical PC speakers.

Jim Hillegass / JRiver Media Center / jriver.com

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This post is for "Ericuco, Esldude & JRiver" . You folks are not going to believe this - I forgot I have a receiver at home (Pioneer VSX-822K)!! I had this hooked up to my TV in the living room and have not turned it on in 2 years, It's about as brand new as they come.

I Had my Comcast TV service discontinued about 2 years ago and just have internet service with them!! I just watch an occasional dvd without even using the receiver!!

I've also decided I think to go with the Sennheiser HD598. Amazon has them on sale for $148.00 at the moment. What do you think on these???

Also on the Emotica XDA - Gen 2 - This cost $299.00 but I can get the Gen 1 for $150.00!! What do you think? (I use to work as a cost accountant and it's showing thru!!)

 

Another think I forgot, I have a Windows Laptop at home I use in emergencys, It runs W8.1, 3 GB ram etc. Instead of using the desktop PC in my system I could use the laptop instead??

Let's talk cableing later today or Sunday!! You guys and this site are lots of fun!!! - David

 

PS - I notice a lot of you folks have your setup listed at the bottom of all your posts, how did you get it to show up in your posts each time without having to retype it???

Walker Edison 5 Shelf Glass Rack > Pioneer VSX-822k Receiver > Sony BDP-S590 BR Player > Sennheiser HD598

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This post is for "Ericuco, Esldude & JRiver" . You folks are not going to believe this - I forgot I have a receiver at home (Pioneer VSX-822K)!! I had this hooked up to my TV in the living room and have not turned it on in 2 years, It's about as brand new as they come.

I Had my Comcast TV service discontinued about 2 years ago and just have internet service with them!! I just watch an occasional dvd without even using the receiver!!

I've also decided I think to go with the Sennheiser HD598. Amazon has them on sale for $148.00 at the moment. What do you think on these???

Also on the Emotica XDA - Gen 2 - This cost $299.00 but I can get the Gen 1 for $150.00!! What do you think? (I use to work as a cost accountant and it's showing thru!!)

 

Another think I forgot, I have a Windows Laptop at home I use in emergencys, It runs W8.1, 3 GB ram etc. Instead of using the desktop PC in my system I could use the laptop instead??

Let's talk cableing later today or Sunday!! You guys and this site are lots of fun!!! - David

 

PS - I notice a lot of you folks have your setup listed at the bottom of all your posts, how did you get it to show up in your posts each time without having to retype it???

 

The receiver you have does almost everything like many such devices. According to the manual you can connect an external USB hard drive or USB memory stick and play audio files through it. Oddly it supports FLAC, but didn't list WAV files. You could try it and see if that is so or not. In any case you need nothing other than to connect a hard drive or memory stick with some FLAC files to listen. So you don't need anything.

 

That reciever has many other options like streaming audio over the ethernet port and several others. I'll leave off discussion of those for now. It also has built in Pandora radio support if you connect it to your network via the ethernet port on the back.

 

The laptop will be fine for music playback. Music playback, despite impressions of some, is a trivial load on a computer. Of course you can do what jriver suggests and simply make an analog connection. The laptop has a headphone output. All you need is a stereo headphone mini jack with regular RCA plugs on the other end. Select any analog input on the back and you can play computer files through it. Sound quality of such devices ranges from not bad to pretty decent. Though you likely will get better quality via the front USB port if you can get that to work for you.

 

If you can play off hard drives on the front USB port of the receiver you don't need to purchase anything.

 

 

About equipment lists, people simply use their signature line for the equipment. If you will click on your own username, you can go fill in your profile information. Somewhere around there is a spot to edit your signature. That is where you can list equipment. Hope that gets you in the right direction. Your signature will appear automatically on any post you make.

And always keep in mind: Cognitive biases, like seeing optical illusions are a sign of a normally functioning brain. We all have them, it’s nothing to be ashamed about, but it is something that affects our objective evaluation of reality. 

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This post is for "Ericuco, Esldude & JRiver" . You folks are not going to believe this - I forgot I have a receiver at home (Pioneer VSX-822K)!! I had this hooked up to my TV in the living room and have not turned it on in 2 years, It's about as brand new as they come.

I Had my Comcast TV service discontinued about 2 years ago and just have internet service with them!! I just watch an occasional dvd without even using the receiver!!

I've also decided I think to go with the Sennheiser HD598. Amazon has them on sale for $148.00 at the moment. What do you think on these???

Also on the Emotica XDA - Gen 2 - This cost $299.00 but I can get the Gen 1 for $150.00!! What do you think? (I use to work as a cost accountant and it's showing thru!!)

 

Another think I forgot, I have a Windows Laptop at home I use in emergencys, It runs W8.1, 3 GB ram etc. Instead of using the desktop PC in my system I could use the laptop instead??

Let's talk cableing later today or Sunday!! You guys and this site are lots of fun!!! - David

 

PS - I notice a lot of you folks have your setup listed at the bottom of all your posts, how did you get it to show up in your posts each time without having to retype it???

 

If your computer has a toslink or other spdif connection (not just the analog outs) you can hook up directly to your receiver and use the dac in the Pioneer. If you can do that I'd start there and see how you like the sound.

 

If you go for the XDA, I'd at least make sure it's an XDA-2 not XDA-1. I owned a XDA-1 and liked it a lot. I now use a Schiit Bifrost which I like better. DACs are a fast-evolving technology and were even more so the previous five years. Since you already have a receiver you can use any analog input on the receiver. Just use the "pure direct' or "direct sound" mode or whatever it's called to apply minimal processing from the receiver.

 

Headphones are a very personal preference, even more so than speakers. Try to get to a Best Buy or someplace where you can try a variety of different models and brands before making a decision.

 

You can leave you main computer where it is and get your files wirelessly to your laptop and connect that to your dac.

 

You can add a signature to your settings that will list your set up.

Family Room: Panny TCP65S2, Panny BDP-55, DTV HR-24, SB Touch, Schiit Bifrost Multibit, Yamaha RX-V3900, Emotiva XPA-3, Rocket NM 550's, Rocket 150's, X-CS, UFW-10, Harmony 700.

 

Computer Room: Dell laptop, Uptone Regen Amber, Schiit Bifrost Multibit, Decware SE84C+, Zu Omen, ALO National, Mr.Speakers Mad Dog headphones

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The more I think about this, the more excited I get! Neither My HP desktop or my Laptop have toslink or other spdif connections. I do have USB's on both however. Check out this link and tell me if an item like them would wor

k!! The usb out on my computer would attach to this and in turn would attach to the spdif connection on my receiver (I think).

Amazon.com: Peachtree Audio T1 24/96 Adaptive USB to SPDIF Converter: Electronics

Walker Edison 5 Shelf Glass Rack > Pioneer VSX-822k Receiver > Sony BDP-S590 BR Player > Sennheiser HD598

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The more I think about this, the more excited I get! Neither My HP desktop or my Laptop have toslink or other spdif connections. I do have USB's on both however. Check out this link and tell me if an item like them would wor

k!! The usb out on my computer would attach to this and in turn would attach to the spdif connection on my receiver (I think).

Amazon.com: Peachtree Audio T1 24/96 Adaptive USB to SPDIF Converter: Electronics

 

Yes, I think that'll be a good solution since your receiver accepts up to 96 kHz PCM on the coaxial digital audio input.

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