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Dropouts - from external harddrive

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Using GForce external drive into a Mac Mini via Firewire, and then mac mini into Bryston via optical. Wonderful for 2 years, until yesterday.


Now have significant dropouts (every 2-3 minutes) that last for a second or fraction of.


1. Any experience with this? 2. Is this early sign of hard drive failure? 3 Is there a diagnostic I can run on the external drive?


Appreciate any feedback.




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When you play music so X-amount is buffered, then as it plays there are no more requests for data from the HD so it shuts off. After a certain point it needs more data and the HD turns back on, the drop out is the delay between the time the HD ramps up and sends data...and the time the software gets it.




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So optical had dropouts and USB does not. Is the DAC asynchronous? Sounds like the DAC is asynch and asking for data at a constant rate so the HD never stops. I would try adjusting the buffer on the player side to either a very small buffer so the HD doesn't get a chance to stop or a very large buffer to store the whole CD in RAM.


Other than that I an clueless....


For now...


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