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Upgrading my C.A.P.S. server

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I built a C.A.P.S. v4 inspired server a couple of years ago using the following component. I used a i7 cpu and mobo instead of the recommended xeon base system because i wanted to use it for video playback as well.  

 

- FC10 ALPHA Black Full Aluminium Fanless Chassis

- ST-SC30 Internal USB3.0 Cable for Streacom Chass

- GA-Z97MX-Gaming 5 LGA1150 Micro ATX Motherboard

- 4th Gen Core i7 4785T 2.2GHz 35W HD4600 8MB Quad

- Standard 32GB (4x8GB) 1600MHz CL11 DDR3 Memory

- ST-HT4 CPU Cooler Riser for FC9/10

- ST-ZF240 ZeroFlex 240W Passive PSU for Streacom

- Cloverleaf C5 UK Mains Power Cord, 1.8m

- ST-OB3 Slot-Load Blu-ray Rewriter

- PCI Express 1X Slot Riser Card Adapter CableI

 

i would like to upgrade it to improve SQ and i am wondering whether to start with i ought to upgrade the USB card (I am presently using the mobo's usb onboard output) and the PSU as well? Is that the upgrade path that you learned people would recommend? what replacement components would you use? I'd be grateful for our advice. 


Custom built silent Media PC, Synology DS415+ NAS -> SoTM sms200Ultra/sps500 CAT to USB converter -> TAD DA1000 DAC/preamp and Bryston 4BSST2 power amp -> Harbeth SHL5 speakers. PowerQuest Carbon USB cable, Chord Company Chorus interconnects, Chord Company Signature speaker leads, Clearer Audio Silver-Line power leads

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Quote

 

 

I  need to figure out how to remove that quote box above.  

 

Windows 10 would be one suggestion.  A newer, larger, faster SSD would be another,  

Edited by rando

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5 hours ago, debt_collector said:

I built a C.A.P.S. v4 inspired server a couple of years ago using the following component. I used a i7 cpu and mobo instead of the recommended xeon base system because i wanted to use it for video playback as well.  

 

- FC10 ALPHA Black Full Aluminium Fanless Chassis

- ST-SC30 Internal USB3.0 Cable for Streacom Chass

- GA-Z97MX-Gaming 5 LGA1150 Micro ATX Motherboard

- 4th Gen Core i7 4785T 2.2GHz 35W HD4600 8MB Quad

- Standard 32GB (4x8GB) 1600MHz CL11 DDR3 Memory

- ST-HT4 CPU Cooler Riser for FC9/10

- ST-ZF240 ZeroFlex 240W Passive PSU for Streacom

- Cloverleaf C5 UK Mains Power Cord, 1.8m

- ST-OB3 Slot-Load Blu-ray Rewriter

- PCI Express 1X Slot Riser Card Adapter CableI

 

i would like to upgrade it to improve SQ and i am wondering whether to start with i ought to upgrade the USB card (I am presently using the mobo's usb onboard output) and the PSU as well? Is that the upgrade path that you learned people would recommend? what replacement components would you use? I'd be grateful for our advice. 

Yes, an audiophile usb card/powered by an LPS-1 would be a big step over a mobo usb output.  PPA or tXbexp can be found cheap, used.  or/and ISO Regen.  Many folks have gone the renderer route, but then you lose the video capabilities.

What media player are you using?  Have you done any optimization to the OS?  I also like the direct route over renderer/NAA for video playback in combination with audio on JRiver.

 

I'm dumping my HTPC build, keep it for other tasks, similar to yours.  I'm going this route with a 12V HTPC pico-itx.  http://jetwaycomputer.com/JBC400P93.html  Found one for $150.  Will require a few modifications.  Because of it's extreme low power and ability to easily be powered by an LPS (Paul Hynes SR7), I expect it to perform similar to a renderer and maybe even better if I go the SoTM sclk EX clocking board mod.  Replacing 2 of the mobo clocks.  Will run out a PCI express 1X slot from the half mini pcie.  There is one SATA 2 input on the mobo, run out external for HDD 5V.

 

empc753-3.thumb.jpg.7102db937424a1b6074cb9a5137145a5.jpg

Edited by ElviaCaprice

(JRiver) Jetway barebones NUC (mod 3 sCLK-EX, Cybershaft OP 14)  (PH SR7) => mini pcie adapter to PCIe 1X => tXUSBexp PCIe card (mod sCLK-EX) (PH SR7) => (USPCB) Chord DAVE => Omega Super 8XRS/REL t5i  (All powered thru Topaz Isolation Transformer)

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14 hours ago, rando said:

Windows 10 would be one suggestion.  A newer, larger, faster SSD would be another,  

My apologies, I forgot to mention I am running Windows 10 with Audiophile Optimiser. I changed my ssd drive to a Samsung 850 PRO 1 TB 


Custom built silent Media PC, Synology DS415+ NAS -> SoTM sms200Ultra/sps500 CAT to USB converter -> TAD DA1000 DAC/preamp and Bryston 4BSST2 power amp -> Harbeth SHL5 speakers. PowerQuest Carbon USB cable, Chord Company Chorus interconnects, Chord Company Signature speaker leads, Clearer Audio Silver-Line power leads

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16 minutes ago, debt_collector said:

My apologies, I forgot to mention I am running Windows 10 with Audiophile Optimiser. I changed my ssd drive to a Samsung 850 PRO 1 TB 

 

Actually, we have found an HDD is better for SQ than a SSD.  I prefer 5V only HDD 2.5" powered externally for both the OS and data, use as short of a SATA chord as possible.


(JRiver) Jetway barebones NUC (mod 3 sCLK-EX, Cybershaft OP 14)  (PH SR7) => mini pcie adapter to PCIe 1X => tXUSBexp PCIe card (mod sCLK-EX) (PH SR7) => (USPCB) Chord DAVE => Omega Super 8XRS/REL t5i  (All powered thru Topaz Isolation Transformer)

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10 hours ago, ElviaCaprice said:

Yes, an audiophile usb card/powered by an LPS-1 would be a big step over a mobo usb output.  PPA or tXbexp can be found cheap, used.  or/and ISO Regen.

What media player are you using?  Have you done any optimization to the OS?  I also like the direct route over renderer/NAA for video playback in combination with audio on JRiver.

I am using Jriver v21 with Audiophile Optimiser.

I an not familiar with the PPA or the iso Regan audiophile usb options. How do they compare with the SOtM board? 

What LPS would you recommend? The HDPLEX 200W Linear Power Supply was used in the original caps v4 spec. Is this still the one to go for IYO?

One last question regarding the sCLK-48.0. I don't fully understand how it  works. I don't have a clock input in My TAD DA1000 DAC. Will this still be needed? 

 

 


Custom built silent Media PC, Synology DS415+ NAS -> SoTM sms200Ultra/sps500 CAT to USB converter -> TAD DA1000 DAC/preamp and Bryston 4BSST2 power amp -> Harbeth SHL5 speakers. PowerQuest Carbon USB cable, Chord Company Chorus interconnects, Chord Company Signature speaker leads, Clearer Audio Silver-Line power leads

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19 minutes ago, debt_collector said:

I am using Jriver v21 with Audiophile Optimiser.

I an not familiar with the PPA or the iso Regan audiophile usb options. How do they compare with the SOtM board? 

What LPS would you recommend? The HDPLEX 200W Linear Power Supply was used in the original caps v4 spec. Is this still the one to go for IYO?

One last question regarding the sCLK-48.0. I don't fully understand how it  works. I don't have a clock input in My TAD DA1000 DAC. Will this still be needed? 

 

 

PPA, JCAT, SOtM usb PCIe cards, pick your poison.  Without reclocking with sclk EX clocking on the tXBexp usb card, the JCAT femto card is probably the next best.  For the price, a PPA card is very good.  All need a good LPS. 

Which takes us to the Uptone Audio products, like LPS-1, great little power supply for those USB cards.  Or the ISO Regen, which in your case might be good because of the lack of galvanic isolation on your DAC.  

I still use the HDPLEX LPS with the ATX board for powering my server, but I'm not thrilled about the HDPLEX power supplies, average at best.  But with a good Isolation transformer you could make them better.

I'm going to move on to a Paul Hynes SR7 to power my server.   But then you need a DC mobo.

sCLK 48 is the old clocking board, if your going to use a clocking board from SOtM, you will want the sCLK EX.  That's what I'll be doing.  The sCLK EX has 4 separate clocks on the board which can be housed into a SOtM component.  I plan to use 2 of the clocks for my mobo, 1 for the tXBexp Pcie card, 1 for a TXusb Ultra which will also house the sCLK EX clocking board.

 

That's a lot of food for thought, sorry for the tossed salad.  Lots of threads on the forum about each.  Do some research if interested.

Edited by ElviaCaprice

(JRiver) Jetway barebones NUC (mod 3 sCLK-EX, Cybershaft OP 14)  (PH SR7) => mini pcie adapter to PCIe 1X => tXUSBexp PCIe card (mod sCLK-EX) (PH SR7) => (USPCB) Chord DAVE => Omega Super 8XRS/REL t5i  (All powered thru Topaz Isolation Transformer)

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1 hour ago, ElviaCaprice said:

Which takes us to the Uptone Audio products, like LPS-1, great little power supply for those USB cards.  Or the ISO Regen, which in your case might be good because of the lack of galvanic isolation on your DAC

Thanks for your tips. I'll follow up your pointers and read up about the various options. 

Just to check that I'm on your wavelength, are you Regan ISO with ultracap LPS-1 over the Upton Audio Upton Audio option because the former has an isolation transformer?


Custom built silent Media PC, Synology DS415+ NAS -> SoTM sms200Ultra/sps500 CAT to USB converter -> TAD DA1000 DAC/preamp and Bryston 4BSST2 power amp -> Harbeth SHL5 speakers. PowerQuest Carbon USB cable, Chord Company Chorus interconnects, Chord Company Signature speaker leads, Clearer Audio Silver-Line power leads

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8 hours ago, ElviaCaprice said:

PPA, JCAT, SOtM usb PCIe cards, pick your poison. 

 

I would recommend avoiding PPA at all costs. He has screwed over plenty of customers with poorly designed and made products and pathetic customer service, myself included. Do a search here and look on his website at the bottom of each product listing page for customer complaints (that he seldom responds to, or blames the buyer for their problems) for examples of this. Almost everyone one of his partners/distributors has dropped his products.

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9 hours ago, debt_collector said:

Thanks for your tips. I'll follow up your pointers and read up about the various options. 

Just to check that I'm on your wavelength, are you Regan ISO with ultracap LPS-1 over the Upton Audio Upton Audio option because the former has an isolation transformer?

ISO Regen has galavanic isolation for USB electrical noise

Isolation transformer is for handling AC electrical.


(JRiver) Jetway barebones NUC (mod 3 sCLK-EX, Cybershaft OP 14)  (PH SR7) => mini pcie adapter to PCIe 1X => tXUSBexp PCIe card (mod sCLK-EX) (PH SR7) => (USPCB) Chord DAVE => Omega Super 8XRS/REL t5i  (All powered thru Topaz Isolation Transformer)

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On 2017-6-1 at 4:39 AM, ElviaCaprice said:

 

Actually, we have found an HDD is better for SQ than a SSD.  I prefer 5V only HDD 2.5" powered externally for both the OS and data, use as short of a SATA chord as possible.

Do you suggest the same HDD for both? And which hdd and PSU would you suggest? Thanks


iMac | dCS Network Bridge | dCS Paganini DAC | Raspberry Pi 3B + 502dac hat | Naim nait 5i | Audio Note AN-J/Spe Speakers

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5 hours ago, Cooler said:

Do you suggest the same HDD for both? And which hdd and PSU would you suggest? Thanks

Yes, especially if you have only one sata  port on a low power mobo, otherwise separate.   For best PS use LPS-1.


(JRiver) Jetway barebones NUC (mod 3 sCLK-EX, Cybershaft OP 14)  (PH SR7) => mini pcie adapter to PCIe 1X => tXUSBexp PCIe card (mod sCLK-EX) (PH SR7) => (USPCB) Chord DAVE => Omega Super 8XRS/REL t5i  (All powered thru Topaz Isolation Transformer)

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On 2017-6-4 at 11:09 PM, ElviaCaprice said:

Yes, especially if you have only one sata  port on a low power mobo, otherwise separate.   For best PS use LPS-1.

Thanks. One more question, how do you connect LPS-1 to internal ssd, they have different plugs? 


iMac | dCS Network Bridge | dCS Paganini DAC | Raspberry Pi 3B + 502dac hat | Naim nait 5i | Audio Note AN-J/Spe Speakers

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5 hours ago, Cooler said:

Thanks. One more question, how do you connect LPS-1 to internal ssd, they have different plugs? 

Make your own.  


(JRiver) Jetway barebones NUC (mod 3 sCLK-EX, Cybershaft OP 14)  (PH SR7) => mini pcie adapter to PCIe 1X => tXUSBexp PCIe card (mod sCLK-EX) (PH SR7) => (USPCB) Chord DAVE => Omega Super 8XRS/REL t5i  (All powered thru Topaz Isolation Transformer)

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5 hours ago, ElviaCaprice said:

Make your own.  

Oh, im not good in this stuff, i tried to google any manufactured cables, but no luck, do you know by any chance who sells such cables? 

Thanks.


iMac | dCS Network Bridge | dCS Paganini DAC | Raspberry Pi 3B + 502dac hat | Naim nait 5i | Audio Note AN-J/Spe Speakers

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2 hours ago, Cooler said:

Oh, im not good in this stuff, i tried to google any manufactured cables, but no luck, do you know by any chance who sells such cables? 

Thanks.

I do not, since I've always made my own.


(JRiver) Jetway barebones NUC (mod 3 sCLK-EX, Cybershaft OP 14)  (PH SR7) => mini pcie adapter to PCIe 1X => tXUSBexp PCIe card (mod sCLK-EX) (PH SR7) => (USPCB) Chord DAVE => Omega Super 8XRS/REL t5i  (All powered thru Topaz Isolation Transformer)

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14 hours ago, Cooler said:

Thanks. One more question, how do you connect LPS-1 to internal ssd, they have different plugs? 

Contact Uptone, he might make one for you. moddiy.com is s possible source, if not for the cable then at least the components.

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9 hours ago, kilroy said:

Contact Uptone, he might make one for you. moddiy.com is s possible source, if not for the cable then at least the components.

Thanks, found: 

https://www.moddiy.com/products/SATA-to-Gridseed-Power-Plug-(2.1mm-DC-Barrel-Plug).html


iMac | dCS Network Bridge | dCS Paganini DAC | Raspberry Pi 3B + 502dac hat | Naim nait 5i | Audio Note AN-J/Spe Speakers

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