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New Amarra 4

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On 3/27/2018 at 7:16 AM, MikePid said:

I have recently joined the DSD camp, thanks to @DancingSea.  I used Amarra SQ+ for 2 years, then tried A4L as my Tidal streamer, but got frustrated with it. Now I’m using Roon & HQPlayer converting Tidal to DSD256. Fantastic sound!  This industry moves fast due to advances in technology, and although SQ+ served me well for 2 years, A4L caused me to explore other options when @DancingSea suggested alternatives. Next year, who knows? - things change quickly. 

 

Yes, DSD is amazing.  I just received a PS Audio DirectStream Junior which upsamples everything to 20 times DSD 128 (via USB), and 20 times DSD 64 (ethernet).  Its breaking in now.  Excited to test it out when the 120 hours are complete...

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4 hours ago, twist222 said:

Excuse my lack of knowledge on some of the otherr playets but do any of the players that support DSD over DoP and DSD upsampling also provide itunes intergration ?

Regards

Mark

 

 

Audirvana....

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14 minutes ago, twist222 said:

Sounds promising. So do the DSD albums show up in the iTunes library with Audirana ?

 

iTunes does not handle DSD at all. 

 

Geoffrey from Monaco ??, a CA member, has written a script that somehow allows iTunes to deal with DSD files. I haven’t tried it. 

 

Audirana unto itself does handle DSD files. 

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On 3/28/2018 at 3:13 AM, twist222 said:

Excuse my lack of knowledge on some of the otherr playets but do any of the players that support DSD over DoP and DSD upsampling also provide itunes intergration ?

Regards

Mark

 

 

Also, Roon will upsample to DSD and read your entire iTunes library.

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Once again Amarra 4 demonstrates how poorly developed it is. Once I updated macOS to 10.13.4, Amarra will no longer play the next track if I'm not on the virtual desktop that has Amarra and itunes displayed. If I switch to that desktop it continues play. I'm also finding little sound glitches here with Amarra 4 that were absent in 3. Meanwhile, every other audioplayer continues to work.

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I did some comparing of A4L vs Roon/HQPlayer. 

 

While Amarra has a decent tone, it’s presentation is small and tight in comparison. 

 

For me, Roon/ HQPlayer is in a different league entirely. And I was once one of A4L’s  biggest advocates in this thread. 

 

Paid for my Roon license today. 

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7 hours ago, DancingSea said:

I did some comparing of A4L vs Roon/HQPlayer. 

 

While Amarra has a decent tone, it’s presentation is small and tight in comparison. 

 

For me, Roon/ HQPlayer is in a different league entirely. And I was once one of A4L’s  biggest advocates in this thread. 

 

Paid for my Roon license today. 

Hello DancingSea,

Can you share yours settings for Hqplayer please?

Best regards


Mac Mini Late 2012 2,6QC I7 256SSD 16GB ram + Transcend 32SDHC / Kenneth Lau Signature Edition LPS + MMK UpTone Audio > Mac OS X Mavericks 10.9.1/Amarra 4Luxe /Audirvana+ 2.6.4 with PSP preQursor2 & Wave TubeSaturator2 AU plugin booted From SD Card w/CAD+Custom Scripts > UpTone Regen / Phasure Lush USB > Denafrips Terminator > Cardas Clear Beyond XLR > Goldmund Mimesis 37S > Nordost Tyr 2 XLR > Goldmund Telos 280 w/Synergistic Research Blue Quantum Fuses > Legato Scherzo > Magico S1 MKII w/SPOD 8

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14 hours ago, tipunch said:

Hello DancingSea,

Can you share yours settings for Hqplayer please?

Best regards

 

This is basically what I use now.  Though I monkey around with it.  I only do DSD 64 upsampling because my MacBook struggles running Roon and HQP at the same time with 128 DSD upsampling.

 

Once the Direct Stream Junior breaks in, I'll be trying settings suggested on the PS Audio forums.  I may turn off HQP's DSD upsampling for FLAC/ ALAC files and allow the DSJ to do it all....

 

I'm not a techno engineer like many on these forums.  HQP can look intimidating at first, but once you get its language, its not so scary.

 

 

HQP Settings.jpg

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Thanks to @DancingSea, I have switched to Roon and HQPlayer and I'm really really happy with it.  My computer is a mid-2012 MacBook Pro, so I can push out DSD256 and it is so sweet!  My settings are similar, except I can use AMSDM7 512+fs and max rate of 48kx256.  I just switched from minring to closed-form-fast.  CPU usage is about 220% (8 core I7, so about 30%).

 

Still a noobie at this (only 3 months since I upgraded from Spotify to Tidal, upgraded my DAC to ifi micro iDSD BL, and jumped on the Roon/HQPlayer bandwagon) so there is probably still more tweaking I can do.  

 

But I think this thread is getting off topic.  Basically, Amarra is great stuff, and I used SQ+ for 2 years and loved it.  But there are other options too.  I hope Sonic Studio can focus on what they do best (i.e. their sound) and stay competitive.  These are exciting times for computer audiophiles, where we can tweak our DACs!  To me, it is like what happened in the photography world  a few years ago when RAW open the doors to new retouching options.

 

Everyone has different needs, and we are lucky that we can try all these options outing decide for ourselves.  The cost of software is peanuts compared with the gear we buy, so if we can use Amarra or the other choices to improve our gear further, I think it is worth it!

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On 31. März 2018 at 12:57 AM, DancingSea said:

 

While Amarra has a decent tone, it’s presentation is small and tight in comparison. 

 

 

Maybe it's more correct ;-)

Maybe it could have a similar reason to this statement from Lucas van der Mee (Apogee)

"One thing I never liked about converters in general and therefore spend a lot of time on, in my own designs, is to make sure the lower midrange is as truthful as can be. It is a rather difficult frequency range and very often “undervalued”. But exactly that range contains “energy”, punch and a lot of the imaging. A good example are electric guitars or snares. When you eq the lower mids out, suddenly they start to sound wimpy and harsh.

A good converter maintains the energy and does not widen the overall image. Especially the latter is very often seen as an advantage; wide seems better at first. But in the end it is not, as a matter of fact the worse the converter the wider the image. A good converter should give you depth, the width as intended and a solid mono response for parts mixed to the center. (The vocal should be upfront in the middle)

Lucas van der Mee

Sr. Design Engineer,Apogee Electronics

 

...Not always the more spectacular or wider is really better or better!

possibly you can also draw this comparison

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16 hours ago, DancingSea said:

 

This is basically what I use now.  Though I monkey around with it.  I only do DSD 64 upsampling because my MacBook struggles running Roon and HQP at the same time with 128 DSD upsampling.

 

Once the Direct Stream Junior breaks in, I'll be trying settings suggested on the PS Audio forums.  I may turn off HQP's DSD upsampling for FLAC/ ALAC files and allow the DSJ to do it all....

 

I'm not a techno engineer like many on these forums.  HQP can look intimidating at first, but once you get its language, its not so scary.

 

 

HQP Settings.jpg

 

Thank you DancingSea,

I've tried yours settings...

Not as good as Amarra...

Amarra is more organic, not more thin or small/tight in my system...

Best regards


Mac Mini Late 2012 2,6QC I7 256SSD 16GB ram + Transcend 32SDHC / Kenneth Lau Signature Edition LPS + MMK UpTone Audio > Mac OS X Mavericks 10.9.1/Amarra 4Luxe /Audirvana+ 2.6.4 with PSP preQursor2 & Wave TubeSaturator2 AU plugin booted From SD Card w/CAD+Custom Scripts > UpTone Regen / Phasure Lush USB > Denafrips Terminator > Cardas Clear Beyond XLR > Goldmund Mimesis 37S > Nordost Tyr 2 XLR > Goldmund Telos 280 w/Synergistic Research Blue Quantum Fuses > Legato Scherzo > Magico S1 MKII w/SPOD 8

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6 hours ago, tipunch said:

 

Thank you DancingSea,

I've tried yours settings...

Not as good as Amarra...

Amarra is more organic, not more thin or small/tight in my system...

Best regards

 

Thanks for your thoughts.  For me, once I got on the DSD bandwagon, A4L just hasn't measured up.  And I enjoy all of HQP's filter.  Also, Roon - albeit unnecessarily expensive - works so very well.

 

The Direct Stream Junior is still breaking in.  It converts everything to 20x DSD, so I'm interested to give A4L a test through the DSJ as I won't have to rely upon Mac based software DSD upsampling.

 

I've always liked Amarra's organic tone and iTunes integration eases the ridiculous pain caused by the A4L library system.   But I have almost a TB of DSD files, and having A4L convert that to PCM is simply unacceptable.

 

Roon, while not perfect, is luxurious with its ability to have my entire library, red book, hi res PCM, Tidal, and DSD all elegantly integrated in one place.  No more work arounds, dragging stuff to folders, standing on one leg and praying it works ;)

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I just had a chat with Ted Smith, the PS Audio designer of the Direct Stream senior and junior DACs.

 

He explained they upsample everything that comes in to the DAC, from low level PCM, to DSD, everything gets converted into 30 bits at the rate of DSD 1280.  That's not a typo, 1280.

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Dancing, if I load HQPlayer on my MacBook with Micro Rendu what do I need to know for starters, still no plans to buy ROON. Thanks How's the Mono Blocks> 

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does anybody experimented problems with A4 installlation?i have dowloaded the last release and when i installed it A4 crashes  without any reason as until before it was well, if well could be said, working! i have uninstalled it several times ,i have tried older versions ,but also the, in the past, working versions goes to crash.....can anyone help me? does anyone have the first A4 pkg version as i would try to start from the beginning?

Obviously i have already called SS customers help but they are ,as in their same style ,always fugitive  and respond only when they want

many thks 

ciaociao

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23 hours ago, DancingSea said:

 

Thanks for your thoughts.  For me, once I got on the DSD bandwagon, A4L just hasn't measured up.  And I enjoy all of HQP's filter.  Also, Roon - albeit unnecessarily expensive - works so very well.

 

The Direct Stream Junior is still breaking in.  It converts everything to 20x DSD, so I'm interested to give A4L a test through the DSJ as I won't have to rely upon Mac based software DSD upsampling.

 

I've always liked Amarra's organic tone and iTunes integration eases the ridiculous pain caused by the A4L library system.   But I have almost a TB of DSD files, and having A4L convert that to PCM is simply unacceptable.

 

Roon, while not perfect, is luxurious with its ability to have my entire library, red book, hi res PCM, Tidal, and DSD all elegantly integrated in one place.  No more work arounds, dragging stuff to folders, standing on one leg and praying it works ;)

So you like Amara better than HQPlayer and what is A4L? Thanks

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7 minutes ago, Jamesroy said:

So you like Amara better than HQPlayer and what is A4L? Thanks

 

As mentioned, I'm well into the Roon/ HQP camp these days.  In the past, I preferred the A4L (Amarra 4 Luxe) sound but not the great headache to use it.  I'm curious to try A4L with the Direct Stream Junior.

 

I didn't get the monoblocks, bought the DSJ dac instead....

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6 hours ago, ddalmas said:

does anybody experimented problems with A4 installlation?i have dowloaded the last release and when i installed it A4 crashes  without any reason as until before it was well, if well could be said, working! i have uninstalled it several times ,i have tried older versions ,but also the, in the past, working versions goes to crash.....can anyone help me? does anyone have the first A4 pkg version as i would try to start from the beginning?

Obviously i have already called SS customers help but they are ,as in their same style ,always fugitive  and respond only when they want

many thks 

ciaociao

 

Not sure if this is the first, but it goes pretty far back..... I've never had trouble with any of the installations, other than A4L is tedious to use.  

Amarra_4_Installer.4.0.259.pkg

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Just now, Jamesroy said:

Thanks for the explanation. I have A4L. Is it compatible with the Micro Rendu?

 

I don't think so..... I forget the reason why.  Perhaps someone else can explain more....

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1 hour ago, Jamesroy said:

I haven't installed A4L yet, dam. So in Amarra iTunes is your visual library? That is the one thing I like about A+.

 

Yes, A4L now has an iTunes integration mode, similar to Audirvana. 

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37 minutes ago, Jamesroy said:

OK so iTunes is the visual Library?

 

Yes.  Just download the very latest version.  Completely uninstall whatever you have now.

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