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A novel way to massively improve the SQ of computer audio streaming


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Most important: please realize this thread is about bleeding edge experimentation and discovery. No one has The Answer™. If you are not into tweaking, just know that you can have a musically satisfying system without doing any of the nutty things we do here.

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1 hour ago, Superdad said:

 

Happy New Years Bob.  Why not run your NUC from your JS-2?  Many dozens of people do. 12V is just fine for those.

You’ll of course need a cable with 5.5mm x 2.5mm plug at the device end—versus 5.5mm x 2.1mm as you use with the UltraRendu.  I can fix you up with that.

 

Cheers,

—Alex C.

Alex,

 

Thank you very much.    I was running the power supply to a Mytek DAC and my Mac Mini to start with.  Boy that was a lot of words and posts ago!  I have the 2.5mm cables on my JS-2. I have them adapted to 2.1 with barrel adapters.  I never ordered new cables with the right connectors.  Ultimately I should upgrade. I assume I will have two devices in the main system, a Roon endpoint and a ISORegen.  

 

I have removed the ISOregen for now and I am using a single Transparent Audio HP USB cable between the Yggdrasil and the endpoints.  The JS-2 is powering both the UR and the NUC/AL. The NUC still has the fan inside.  I have to review the BIOS settings.  They are a bit different on this NUC since this is an i7.  

 

I will do some listening after lunch.  ( I want to disconnect or turn off the fan for a bit too)

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1 hour ago, mikicasellas said:

 

Well NUC + AL has been very favorable compared with the Zenith SE, so that says a lot

 

Everything is still inconclusive for me.

@austinpop has said before, Zenith Se is not better than Sotm Trifecta, but he prefered Zenith because it has less cables.

In a blind test against the Nuc, he choosed Zenith.

 

The only thing I'm sure, the CYJ seems the best bang for the buck of all times.

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Rajiv

 Congratulations on achieving >500 pages in your thread, and the high standards of your moderation.

 

Regards

Alex

 

 

How a Digital Audio file sounds, or a Digital Video file looks, is governed to a large extent by the Power Supply area. All that Identical Checksums gives is the possibility of REGENERATING the file to close to that of the original file.

PROFILE UPDATED 13-11-2020

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1 hour ago, Advieira said:

Everything is still inconclusive for me.

 

You seem to be suffering a severe case of FOMO (fear of missing out)! Don't worry so much.

 

I have said it before, and I will say it again - the SQ improvement you get from using a NUC endpoint running AL/RAM depends from where you are starting. If you have a SOtM trifecta, you are already at a very high level of SQ. And - if the recent update to the sMS-200ultra firmware did indeed deliver SQ improvements as reported, then until someone does a head to head comparison of a NUC running AL/RAM, you don't even know which is better.

 

1 hour ago, Advieira said:

@austinpop has said before, Zenith Se is not better than Sotm Trifecta, but he prefered Zenith because it has less cables.

 

Wow - no. I think you may be confusing someone else's reports over mine. Please don't try to reduce everything I've written into a binary statement like that. Please read my rationale for upgrading to the SE here (from the index):

 

On 1/2/2017 at 1:49 AM, austinpop said:

 

 

1 hour ago, Advieira said:

The only thing I'm sure, the CYJ seems the best bang for the buck of all times.

 

Don't be so sure. Instead, why not try what people like @rickca , @bobfa, and others are doing - dip your toe in the NUC waters and see what you think. It's not too expensive to try. Buy a CJYH or PJYH, some RAM, and throw on AL/RAM. Do an A/B with your sMS=200ultra, using the same PSU in both cases. Tell us what you think.

 

If I still had an sMS-200ultra in my hands, this is exactly what I would do.

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6 minutes ago, sandyk said:

Rajiv

 Congratulations on achieving >500 posts in your thread, and the high standards of your moderation.

 

Regards

Alex

 

 

Thanks! Do you mean >500 pages? 

 

Because you got me curious wondering... is there a way in CA AS to count a user's posts in a thread? :) 

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7 minutes ago, austinpop said:

Do you mean >500 pages? 

OOPS !

 I have corrected that slipup in my post.

 As your thread is so large, it would be nice to see a spinoff - The Best Of.

Perhaps posts selected by the many participants in your thread as being the most interesting /innovative and helpful?

 

How a Digital Audio file sounds, or a Digital Video file looks, is governed to a large extent by the Power Supply area. All that Identical Checksums gives is the possibility of REGENERATING the file to close to that of the original file.

PROFILE UPDATED 13-11-2020

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38 minutes ago, sandyk said:

OOPS !

 I have corrected that slipup in my post.

 As your thread is so large, it would be nice to see a spinoff - The Best Of.

Perhaps posts selected by the many participants in your thread as being the most interesting /innovative and helpful?

 

The conclusion should be the ULTIMATE C.A.P.S. v.5 (or A.S.P.S v1). 🤗

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2 hours ago, Advieira said:

And we have a mistery. The main factor for good SQ is the NUC7 or the AL running in Ram? Can a audio pc running AL in ram has same SQ? Or can a NUC running optimized windows or OSX does the same?

 

👆🏻

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3 hours ago, Advieira said:

The conclusion should be the ULTIMATE C.A.P.S. v.5 (or A.S.P.S v1). 🤗

 

Yes, well this site's CASH List (see link at bottom of every page) also needs a name change and updating (half the products on it are NLA), though I don't think that's where the C.A.P.S. builds were listed. :S

 

Sorry for the OT...

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For those who want to build a very powerful server, some intriguing upcoming AMD processors.

https://www.theinquirer.net/inquirer/news/3068713/amds-16-core-ryzen-9-cpu-prematurely-listed-by-russian-retailer

NUC7PJYH/AL --> Berkeley Alpha USB --> Jeff Rowland Aeris --> Jeff Rowland 625 S2 --> Focal Utopia 3 Diablos with 2 x Focal Electra SW 1000 BE subs

 

i7-6700K/Windows 10 Version 2004/HDPLEX 300W/HDPLEX 400W DC-ATX --> EVGA Nu Audio Card --> Focal CMS50's 

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11 hours ago, bobfa said:

SQ a Diversion

 

I said I would do some testing this afternoon and report back.  We are going to slow down a bit.  Let me first add a little bit to my situation.

 

I have been investigating two methods to improve the sound quality in my Living Room.  I have been looking at possible room treatments, but that is a long shot as it is a formal shared space.  I have also been "messing around" with DSP room correction software.  Both of these options were becoming daunting, and  I was stalled out.

 

In my office, I have rounded out the system there, and I was not happy with the staging on my desktop speakers.  I had forgotten that near-field monitors worked better on stands.  I was playing with the foam blocks that you place under the speakers, and they helped a lot.  However, I found that many folks were using the pucks from Isocoustics.  I got a set of them for each speaker!   The sound quality is excellent, and the staging is beautiful.  Happy!

 

Now back to the Living Room.  While researching for the office system, I discovered out that Isoacoustics makes stands for floor standing speakers.  After installing the GAIA III Stands on my B&W 804 Nautilus speakers the sound of the system changed dramatically for the better.  (Mostly)  I moved back and forth with spikes, just on the carpet and the GAIA III stands.  I have finalized the system setup with two planks of Delrin under the speakers that the stands, so they have something to grip.  The Delrin bases also allow for location adjustments vs. spikes.  I was starting to get comfortable with the differences.  Then,...  I "discovered" the NUC/AL stuff on the forums.

 

 

Fast forward a week or so and I have my Windows 10 NUC stripped down, running AL in the Living Room system.  I set it all up on the workbench with the Mojo DAC and moved it upstairs two days ago.

 

 

I am amazed at the changes in the sound of my system.  Virtually everything I listen to is better to my ear.  I have one track that does not sound right!  Not all of the changes are for the better; there is some top end glare that was not there a month ago.  The NUC/AL piled on top of the changes in the speaker stands is almost overwhelming.  There are a lot of interactions here that I HAVE to evaluate.  The overall tone of the system is just so different that I do not want to overreact to the changes.  

 

 

Finally, I am about the only person listening to the system right now.  I have a couple of others scheduled to start visiting to help out listening!  

 

There are a few more steps to this process.

 

  • More time listening
  • Build my final NUL/AL endpoint. (I have started an article on it!)
  • Waiting on the UpTone ethernet switch
  • Test with the GAIA III stands on their spikes
  • Looking at AL on the server
  • Much more listening!

RJF

Just make sure you give any new electronics and cable plenty of time to burn-in, otherwise you won’t really know where you stand.  I’m sure most people here are familiar with burn-in but what I’m finding is that as systems improve and become ever more revealing, subtle changes continue to emerge long after the 50-100 hours normally expected as the burn-in period. A very typical burn-in anomaly is slightly overhyped top-end and/or slight emphasis of narrow frequency bands in both treble and bass.  Mundorf capacitors for instance seem to take several hundred hours to reach their absolute optimum but do add greater finesse so are definitely worth the wait. 

I’ve also noticed that consumer electronics reach their optimum far faster than most audiophile grade stuff, but can sound really out of whack for the first few hours.  

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3 minutes ago, Blackmorec said:

Just make sure you give any new electronics and cable plenty of time to burn-in, 

 

Thank you for that.  All of this equipment is fully burned in.  This is all re-configured.  Now when my new NUC arrives, it will need time!

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21 hours ago, Advieira said:

 

Everything is still inconclusive for me.

@austinpop has said before, Zenith Se is not better than Sotm Trifecta, but he prefered Zenith because it has less cables.

In a blind test against the Nuc, he choosed Zenith.

 

The only thing I'm sure, the CYJ seems the best bang for the buck of all times.

He only liked the ZENith SE better on my system versus his NUC and Adrian's DS-1 and has never said that the SOtM Trifecta is better than the SE. 

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1 hour ago, limniscate said:

He only liked the ZENith SE better on my system versus his NUC and Adrian's DS-1 and has never said that the SOtM Trifecta is better than the SE. 

 

My english is not good, but what you understand from its words:

 

Findings

 
Let me first dispense with the most obvious and financially most attractive comparison: could the Zenith SE standalone replace my spaghetti chain? If so, I could sell my entire trifecta, and recoup most or all of what I paid for the SE. Sadly - the answer is an emphatic NO. While the SE bettered the trifecta in terms of the traits described above, especially dynamism and weight, there was also a profound sense of loss for the air, dimensionality, and resolution that is so characteristic of all the clock improvements. This was not surprising, nor unexpected, as it's what Roy found in his evaluation too.
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4 hours ago, Advieira said:

 

My english is not good, but what you understand from its words:

 

Findings

 
Let me first dispense with the most obvious and financially most attractive comparison: could the Zenith SE standalone replace my spaghetti chain? If so, I could sell my entire trifecta, and recoup most or all of what I paid for the SE. Sadly - the answer is an emphatic NO. While the SE bettered the trifecta in terms of the traits described above, especially dynamism and weight, there was also a profound sense of loss for the air, dimensionality, and resolution that is so characteristic of all the clock improvements. This was not surprising, nor unexpected, as it's what Roy found in his evaluation too.

 

 

Keep reading down to Finding 1.

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Hi Guys,

I am using a good quality LPS for my soTm Ultra Neo and soTm  txusb, do you think it would be a good upgrade to get the sps-500 to power them. If the gain is big then I am all for the upgrade. Thank you for your suggestions.

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4 hours ago, Abyss Man said:

Hi Guys,

I am using a good quality LPS for my soTm Ultra Neo and soTm  txusb, do you think it would be a good upgrade to get the sps-500 to power them. If the gain is big then I am all for the upgrade. Thank you for your suggestions.

 

It depends on what you are using to power them at the moment. If it's the stock psu"s that SoTM ships then a better psu would defo make a big improvement.

 

I've got an SPS-500 but my LPS-1.2 is better and better value as cheaper.

 

I believe the consensus is that the LPS-1 beats the SPS-500, the LPS-1.2 is better still and the Paul Hynes SR4 is even better. But Paul's waiting list and delays are a factor as the others are far simpler to buy.

 

A couple 2nd hand LPS-1 might be the sweetspot in terms of performance vs price.

 

Cheers,

Alan

Synergistic Research Powercell UEF SE > Sonore OpticalModule (LPS-1.2 & DXP-1A5DSC) > EtherRegen (SR4T & DXP-1A5DSC) > PinkFaun modded Buffalo BS-GS2016P (Farad Super3 & LPS-1.2) > (Sablon 2020 LAN) Innuos Zenith SE server > (Sablon 2020 USB) Innuos Phoenix > (Sablon 2020 USB) PS Audio Directstream DAC > PS Audio M1200 monoblocks > Salk Sound Supercharged Songtowers 

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For those that might be interested, I have posted my initial listening impressions of the sMS-200Ultra Neo with SOtM's latest allegedly low latency V0.4.5.1 firmware here:   

 

 

(In summary, a definite step up in SQ, but maybe a minor HF issue?)

 

 

Windows 10 PC, Roon, HQPlayer, SOtM sMS-200Ultra, tX-USBultra, Paul Hynes SR4 (x2), Mutec REF10, Mutec MC3+USB, Devialet 1000Pro, KEF Blade.  Plus Pro-Ject Signature 12 TT for playing my 'legacy' vinyl collection.

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On 12/28/2018 at 3:07 AM, Superdad said:

Actually, look at the -100 dBc/Hz phase noise @10Hz offset spec for the $50 20Mhz Connor-Winfield OH4 and you will see that better clocks (for audio applications) cost less, not more. 9_9

Even the $9.60 Crystek CCHD-575 has lower phase noise/jitter than those C-W clocks. And that's from the published very conservative Crystek plots--actual production 575s run -108 to -112 at 10Hz (for a 25MHz part).

 

qnFnsKA.png

 

http://www.conwin.com/datasheets/cx/cx259.pdf

http://www.crystek.com/crystal/spec-sheets/clock/CCHD-575.pdf

https://audiophilestyle.com/forums/topic/55202-article-quick-take-the-linear-solution-ds-1-network-streamer/?page=2&tab=comments#comment-914669

5 hours ago, allaboutacoustic said:

All the about measure from Crystek is base on 25ppm Stability compare to Conwin at 10ppb which conwin OCXO already 2500x better in frequency stability in comparison. And this stay true in any industry and believe me you can hear this different in audio reproduction. 

 


 

BTW, here's the latest from Adrian so I'm assuming that OCXO upgrades could be applied to USB / Ethernet / SoC for both June Canyon as well as Dawson Canyon

 

5 hours ago, allaboutacoustic said:

Does TLS offer upgrade to NUCi7DNBE ?

Yes, DS-1 can be order as i7 Nuc version, please email for more detail.

 

I hope this answer some of the questions but feel free to email [email protected] as well.

 

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