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Sample Rates, Basic Questions.


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I got a new DAC today. An Emotiva Stealth DC-1. So for the first time I can see the incoming sample rate from my computer.

 

Currently it reads 44.1 khz.

 

My question: Can / should I change it, and if so, how do I accomplish changing it?

 

Be gentle, I'm old school.

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You can download the owners manual here:

https://emotiva.com/resources/manuals/stealth_DC-1_manual.pdf

 

 

Here at the bottom you can download driver files needed for Windows to operate at higher than 96 khz (the DC1 can do up to 192 khz). You also can get instructions on setting up player software to use WASAPI to feed signals over USB to the DC1. This the preferred method if you are using Windows. Otherwise you may not get bit perfect output of files.

 

Emotiva

 

The DC1 will show the sample rate of the incoming signal. That will change if the incoming sample rate changes. With sources like CD or DVD or Bluray players you cannot change this. If the source is a computer, some player software will upsample a lower sample rate file to feed to the DC1. So for instance you could have a file you copied from a CD which is a 44.1 file, let software upsample it to 192 khz and feed a 192 khz version to your DC1. Some think upsampling sounds better, others say it doesn't matter. It shouldn't matter. Upsampling doesn't actually add musical information not present in the original lower sample rate file.

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 has a very well thought out position that not everyone agrees with.

 

Some people favor different sample rates. It's possible (some would say probable) that a given DAC or system may sound better when fed a specific sample rate, be it 41, 48, 88, 96, 176, 192, or DSD. This could be true because of hardware reasons or, for instance, the way your DAC handles and filters different sample rates. This could be true even if all the theoretical arguments against it helping SQ are correct.

 

The only way to tell is to experiment for yourself and see if upsampling or even downsampling result in different or better sound for you. Some playback software will change the sample rate on the fly as it plays back.

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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First - respect for what esldude and firedog said.

 

My experience; you have to spend a LOT of money on gear before you can hear any difference between a 96 kHz file and a 192 kHz file.

 

Your DAC is a nice upgrade from what is in a consumer grade a CD player. I can't find any info in your profile to tell me what other components you are using. If you're really interested in enjoying high resolution music without taking on a second mortgage, you should (my suggestion) read more about the source material that you are feeding your system. Not all high-res data is equal. Explore sources that have been created for digital use.

 

Squeezing the juice out of 192khz or DSD files is hard to do without a lot of trial and error within the spectrum of components and interconnects that comprise a high end audiophile system.

 

I haven't gotten there yet and I'm very happy with the sound of my moderately priced components - in the $10k range.

That I ask questions? I am more concerned about being stupid than looking like I might be.

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Thanks again all. I'm primarily a HeadFier. I've been using Schiit amps and DACs with a collection of headphones, from Sennheiser HD800s on down.

 

Recently got the Cavalli Liquid Carbon and the DC-1. I'm running an old Sony CD transport into the coax input of the DC-1 at 44.1 K. I'm also using Spotify, and others, out of my PC.

 

The PC has higher sample rates, but is currently running 44.1 K. My question was specifically related to higher sample rates out of my PC. I'm very satisfied with my current setup but was curious what difference , if any , changing the sample rate would have. I think I'll just leave things as they are.

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Thanks again all. I'm primarily a HeadFier. I've been using Schiit amps and DACs with a collection of headphones, from Sennheiser HD800s on down.

 

Recently got the Cavalli Liquid Carbon and the DC-1. I'm running an old Sony CD transport into the coax input of the DC-1 at 44.1 K. I'm also using Spotify, and others, out of my PC.

 

The PC has higher sample rates, but is currently running 44.1 K. My question was specifically related to higher sample rates out of my PC. I'm very satisfied with my current setup but was curious what difference , if any , changing the sample rate would have. I think I'll just leave things as they are.

 

Which Schiit DAC?

One never knows, do one? - Fats Waller

The fairest thing we can experience is the mysterious. It is the fundamental emotion which stands at the cradle of true art and true science. - Einstein

Computer, Audirvana -> optical to EtherREGEN -> microRendu -> ISO Regen -> Pro-Ject Pre Box S2 DAC -> Spectral DMC-12 & DMA-150 -> Vandersteen 3A Signature.

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I have a Modi and a Modi 2U. Just got the DC-1 yesterday.

 

Got it. The DC-1 uses AD1955 DAC chips, which are 8x oversampling delta-sigma chips. The max input sample rate is 192KHz. So the specific question is whether it might help the sound at all if you upsample RedBook to 176.4 or 192KHz.

 

Maybe. :-)

 

You're the one who'll decide whether it's worthwhile for your ears in your system, if you feel like trying it in the first place.

 

For a PC, the simplest way to try this is with an inline upsampling player like HQPlayer, which has a free trial. If you're curious go ahead and try it, or if at this point you're more comfortable sticking with your DAC's internal oversampling that's fine too.

One never knows, do one? - Fats Waller

The fairest thing we can experience is the mysterious. It is the fundamental emotion which stands at the cradle of true art and true science. - Einstein

Computer, Audirvana -> optical to EtherREGEN -> microRendu -> ISO Regen -> Pro-Ject Pre Box S2 DAC -> Spectral DMC-12 & DMA-150 -> Vandersteen 3A Signature.

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