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Amarra 1.2 Available for Download


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Thanks for the head's up. Got it installed. Volume doesn't work anymore from my little apple remote, but I'm sure I just need to get a setting configured.

 

So the playlist feature is interesting, and I'm sure is the setup for the "memory player" capability. When using the playlist feature, itunes stops and no longer simultaneously playing/processing/muted. Listening and curious if there is an impact on SQ as clearly this is an additional "process" that is unnecessary (presumably far more processor intensive than all those other little things we've tried to eliminate). Also, it would be (will be soon?) great if the playlist could be pre-loaded into RAM so no disc access was required for the music files. this should eliminate the need to have a fancy and large SSD drive for the large music library to improve sound quality vs having an internal or external HD. Clay, curious if you hear a difference with the SQ using the playlist feature vs regular itunes-based playback.

 

My system is sounding much better as I play it tonight with this software version, but I mucked around with the direction of all my equipment fuses a little earlier today when retrieving all the specs (and have a power device that's probably been settling in that's dedicated to the Mac)... but I'll take it whatever it is... :)

 

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I agree with your predictions of setting Amarra up for memory player capability, although he also needed/wanted to eliminate the 'resume stain' of not having gapless playback for the Classical listeners. Jon has already publicly commented on the eventual memory player feature, I believe.

 

 

"Clay, curious if you hear a difference with the SQ using the playlist feature vs regular itunes-based playback."

 

I honestly haven't yet tried this feature yet. I was sick for most of the testing period - and even after recovery I was congested, so hearing was variable. I was unable to compare against iTunes becuase a bug was introduced that disabled the ability to switch back from iTunes to Amarra.

 

I can say that I feel version 1.2 sounds improved based on limited listening in the last few days, although like you, I've also made other changes recently (in matter of a couple of days) that perhaps improved the sound - e.g., I installed an SSD in my G5, did a clean install of OS X on the SSD (reported as an improvement on AC), did a clean (read unfragmented) copy of my music files to a new external disk (with much lower power/heat/noise), and improved the quality of the adapter from the ULN-2 TRS to XLR Livelines. Of course, the Livelines have been breaking in too. They made a huge improvement all on their own, prior to these other changes.

 

My system is sounding much better then ever now. Something 'clicked' in the last several days - a combination of all of the above, actually.

 

I didn't think of the possibility of the clean install / disk copy having any impact until after the fact, nor did I expect that the Neutrik adapter would have an impact.

 

More to your question, Lars (aka Mercman) noted on AA that Amarra seems to sound better when the iTunes interface is closed, presumably due to use of less memory (his observation, not mine).

 

I think it's notable that this is the first release in which Jon has touted "improved" sound quality. The depth of the soundstage in my current setup is tremendous. I hear stuff I've never heard before, and I hear it placed precisely in the next apartment over. :)

 

 

Clay, who is seriously hoping that his new sound is not due simply to the fact that his neighbors have unplugged all their weird electrical appliances while on vacation.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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I'm looking forward to the improved sound, but concerned about the slow but sure dis-integration from iTunes. One of my major must-haves was the Apple Remote iTouch functionality, and as Amarra slowly moves away from iTunes this may be more problematic. I guess I need to look into Rowmote.

 

Clay, glad your enjoying the Livelines. :) Your welcome. :)

 

Happy New Year to you, Geoff, Chris and all the CA gang.

 

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"Clay, glad your enjoying the Livelines."

 

I was waiting until my bank account recovers before officially thanking you. :)

 

The Livelines are great, and while expensive to me, they seem downright reasonable, esp. given their sound, as compared to more expensive cables, and given the hand-made manufacture.

 

As for the much vaunted iTunes integration, while I might never have considered Amarra without it, I'm wondering if this is Amarra's achilles' heel. Soooo many of Amarra's bugs & issues seem to be related to maintaining the integration, when in fact, 'integration' is a poor choice of word(s) for the uneasy co-existence.

 

thanks again, on the Liveline's recommendation.

 

clay

 

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I experienced the new version with integrated playlist option. I played an iTunes playlist which I listen to everyday (don't ask why...). I heard (or think have heard ;-) immediate improvements. Mid treble and treble are more expressive, more present. Some details (especially in the treble area) seem to be revealed.

Rowmote control works better even if not perfectly (some delay in responding to control).

 

Wish everyone a happy new year

 

Best regards

 

MPB/iTunes + Audirvana / Amarra / AVS 3D - Accuphase E 550 / DAC 30 - Apertura Altra Signature

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Is it me or did the Demo download link disappear from the Amarra site? All I can find is the "request a demo" template. Previously, I was able to actually download the earlier version mini demo directly. I was hoping to "upgrade" the demo version to hear the difference, if any.

Tom

 

Tidal Audio Agoria Loudspeakers; VAC Master preamp; Merrill Audio Christine preamp, Merrill Audio Jens & VAC Renaissance Phono Preamps;   Bricasti M28 & Merrill Audio Element 118 Monoblock Amplifiers; Sonore Signature RenduSE Optical network player; Bricasti M12 Source Controller/ DAC; Spiral Groove SG-2 TT with Centroid Arm & Transfiguration Proteus Diamond Cartridge; Ampex ATR-102 Reel-Reel with Merrill Audio Master tape head preamplifier; Ansuz signal and power cabling and power distribution; Symposium Isis racks 

INDUSTRY AFFILIATION: Dealer- XtremeFidelity.net (VAC,  Bricasti, Merrill Audio,  Sonore, Ansuz, Synergistic Research & others)

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Guest Claude

There are improvements. But actually I am comparing to 1.02 not to 1.1 because I found 1.02 clearly superior to 1.1 (soundwise). I still dont know which version I like best. If running 1.02 without changing priority to certain processes, and than switching to 1.1 is clearly an improvement. I just deinstalled 1.2 and reinstalled 1.02, then changed priority of processes and have much more weight in the presentation and deeper and more prominent bass.

My impressions:

1.1. - improved imaging - much deeper and wider presentation (speakers are no longer a boundary for sound). More space between instruments. The top end has better resolution sounds more prominent but also more refined.

When listening to acoustic music with acoustic bass, I find the presentation not weighty enough. 1.02 With 1.02 (reniced) I have almost holistic images of an acoustic bass. Voices are a bit "chestier" . Overall a bit more involving.

Havent tried the playlist feature yet.

Claude

 

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inconsistent to me. You said there are improvements, and that you didn't like the sound of 1.1, but concluded that 1.1 has better imaging, etc...then said no, it's 1.02 that's better. And what is "reniced". Please explain...the numbers/versions are everything here. Thanks

 

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Claude-

I tried that first- downloaded 1.2 and tried to run in demo mode. I first uninstalled preferences per instructions. The first screen that comes up is "Authorize". I click on the Authorize button and then unclick "use my Ilock key"; then I get either Internet or Manual activation. Internet activation tells me that I'm not authorized and use Manual. Manual requires me to send a license activation to Sonic and wait for a reply.

Tom

 

Tidal Audio Agoria Loudspeakers; VAC Master preamp; Merrill Audio Christine preamp, Merrill Audio Jens & VAC Renaissance Phono Preamps;   Bricasti M28 & Merrill Audio Element 118 Monoblock Amplifiers; Sonore Signature RenduSE Optical network player; Bricasti M12 Source Controller/ DAC; Spiral Groove SG-2 TT with Centroid Arm & Transfiguration Proteus Diamond Cartridge; Ampex ATR-102 Reel-Reel with Merrill Audio Master tape head preamplifier; Ansuz signal and power cabling and power distribution; Symposium Isis racks 

INDUSTRY AFFILIATION: Dealer- XtremeFidelity.net (VAC,  Bricasti, Merrill Audio,  Sonore, Ansuz, Synergistic Research & others)

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"RENICE" is a command to alter the priority of a process in OSX.

 

http://forums.macrumors.com/archive/index.php/t-126007.html

 

 

 

Wavelength Silver Crimson/Denominator USB DAC, Levinson 32/33H, Synergistic Research Cables and AC cables, Shunyata Hydra V-Ray II with King Cobra CX cable, Wilson Sasha WP speakers with Wilson Watch Dog Sub. Basis Debut V Vacuum turntable/ Grahm Phantom/Koetsu Jade Platinum. MacBook Pro 17\" 2.3GHz Quad Core i7, 8GB RAM, Pure Music, Decibel, Fidelia, AudioQuest Diamond USB Cable.

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I'm very happy with the sound of 1.2. Gapless playback was also very important to me.

 

Wavelength Silver Crimson/Denominator USB DAC, Levinson 32/33H, Synergistic Research Cables and AC cables, Shunyata Hydra V-Ray II with King Cobra CX cable, Wilson Sasha WP speakers with Wilson Watch Dog Sub. Basis Debut V Vacuum turntable/ Grahm Phantom/Koetsu Jade Platinum. MacBook Pro 17\" 2.3GHz Quad Core i7, 8GB RAM, Pure Music, Decibel, Fidelia, AudioQuest Diamond USB Cable.

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Guest Claude

My post was a bit confusing - sorry.

So once again. I still have 1.02 installed. And all impressions are based on comparing 1.02 and 1.2.

 

Thanks Lars for posting the thread.

Here is more information: http://www.computeraudiophile.com/content/Experiment-Mac-Users

I did change priority for Amarra, i-tunes, coreaudio (raised to - 18-20) , vnc-server and Applewindowserver (lowered to + 15). This improves the soundquality tremendously (at least in my system). So back to my impressions:

 

My impressions:

1.2. - improved imaging - much deeper and wider presentation (speakers are no longer a boundary for sound). More space around instruments. The top end has better resolution, sounds more prominent but also more refined.

BUT: When listening to acoustic music e.g. with acoustic bass, I find the presentation not weighty enough. Havent tried the playlist feature yet. I will do that today.

 

1.02 - With 1.02 (reniced - changed priority of processes) I have almost holographic images of an acoustic bass. Voices are a bit "chestier" . Overall a bit more involving.

 

I am just listening to 1.02 and can confirm my first impressions. Will try 1.2 now and report back.

Claude

 

 

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I'm not sure why Amarra sounds better in Playlist with iTunes graphics closed. I hear less midbass coloration in Playlist mode. Listen to a male vocalist close to the microphone. iTunes tends to have a prominent midbass.

 

 

 

Wavelength Silver Crimson/Denominator USB DAC, Levinson 32/33H, Synergistic Research Cables and AC cables, Shunyata Hydra V-Ray II with King Cobra CX cable, Wilson Sasha WP speakers with Wilson Watch Dog Sub. Basis Debut V Vacuum turntable/ Grahm Phantom/Koetsu Jade Platinum. MacBook Pro 17\" 2.3GHz Quad Core i7, 8GB RAM, Pure Music, Decibel, Fidelia, AudioQuest Diamond USB Cable.

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the instructions for 1.2. The playlist doesn't seem to disconnect from iTunes for me. When I use Remote to change iTunes songs (while in "lit" highlighted playlist mode) the songs change and thr album art shows. That means iTunes is doing that work. Also, conversely, when I close down iTunes it all stops. Maybe I'm having a brain cramp.

 

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You are correct Ted. You can only close the graphic display, not the iTunes program. Using "Remote" I can change songs on the display, but Playist does not respond.

 

I guess Amarra is still tied to iTunes. I did tell Jon about this, but I think it's the nature of the program.

 

Wavelength Silver Crimson/Denominator USB DAC, Levinson 32/33H, Synergistic Research Cables and AC cables, Shunyata Hydra V-Ray II with King Cobra CX cable, Wilson Sasha WP speakers with Wilson Watch Dog Sub. Basis Debut V Vacuum turntable/ Grahm Phantom/Koetsu Jade Platinum. MacBook Pro 17\" 2.3GHz Quad Core i7, 8GB RAM, Pure Music, Decibel, Fidelia, AudioQuest Diamond USB Cable.

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if it's just a GUI and library manager in the Amarra world? I'd think that you'd want it out of the way (processor-wise) since it's not doing any sonics (and since, when in playlist mode, you'd like it relegated to the back room anyway). Lemme know...thx

 

BTW, renice'd Amarra and Core Audio...and either Clay's placebo demons are attacking...or I'm hearing better air and resolution....and my Macbook has very little else installed (Twilight, Rowmote, Pure Vinyl are only real other external apps)

 

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Guest Claude

Good point Ted. I tried about everything concerning renicing with 1.02. This worked best for me. I trusted my ears not logic. What really improved the sound was to lower priority for the VNC and WindowServer.

 

Back to 1.2

Try to lower I-Tunes priority. It might help. I just did it and those demons are all over the place. ;-)

But even without this renicing stuff, I am impressed. Compared to 1.02 the sound lost some weight and slam. But it has more resolution across the whole frequency band. Soundstage far deeper and wider.

I am still missing some wood with violins. Just a little bit. But hey, this might just be my system. In this regard I still prefer 1.02. But this is just after 1 day of listening.

Claude

 

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Before 1.2 amarra, I had been using ram disks and renicing iTunes, amarra and coreaudio. What I feel is that with amarra 1.2 the above has no effect if not detrimental effect. What I found was that disabling journaling on the HD had the most positive effect. My music is stored on internal HD which had journaling enabled by default. Disabling the journaling gave me the most nice results.

 

Macbook pro 15\" 2.53ghz core 2 duo with Amarra, 1 TB storage, 6 GB memory -> USB locus-design nucleus cable -> EA overdrive DAC -> -> modded parasound JC1 monoblocks -> cadence ARCA loudspeakers + REL studio III

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I use a SW called Onyx. Free download. Goto the info tab on the top tablist. Select disk on the sub tablist. You will see enable/disable tab at the bottom.

 

Use with care (better have a backup of ur disk), though nothing un toward happened for me.

 

Macbook pro 15\" 2.53ghz core 2 duo with Amarra, 1 TB storage, 6 GB memory -> USB locus-design nucleus cable -> EA overdrive DAC -> -> modded parasound JC1 monoblocks -> cadence ARCA loudspeakers + REL studio III

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Sanjay,

 

Did you do this for the OS disk, or just data disk?

 

I turned off journaling at time of partitioning before a recent copy of my data files to a new 1Tb WD My Book Studio II, but was reluctant to do so with the OS disk.

 

Fortunately, I added several partitions on my OS X drive and could do so rather easily I think.

 

clay

 

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