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Microrendu through airport express


Browniesbane
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I’ve been searching this forum, but couldn’t find anything that answered all my questions. 

 

I use a iMac with a remote wireless hard drive to store music and an Apple time capsule router,, and would like to feed into a usb dac (bitfrostmb) for a remote headphone station. I’m looking to alternatives to an airport express to feed the dac  because it only allows optical digital output ( other than analogue) and has the Apple airplay limits on hd.

 

I understand that audirvana is now compatible with microrendu, but I don’t have direct internet access through an Ethernet. Would it be possible to use an airport express in client mode to convert the wireless signal to Ethernet and then feed the microrendu through the AE Ethernet output, all controlled by audirvana. If this works, would hd audio be downsampled to 16/44, when I am using audirvana and would I lose audirvanas sound enhancements?

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1 hour ago, Browniesbane said:

I’ve been searching this forum, but couldn’t find anything that answered all my questions. 

 

I use a iMac with a remote wireless hard drive to store music and an Apple time capsule router,, and would like to feed into a usb dac (bitfrostmb) for a remote headphone station. I’m looking to alternatives to an airport express to feed the dac  because it only allows optical digital output ( other than analogue) and has the Apple airplay limits on hd.

 

I understand that audirvana is now compatible with microrendu, but I don’t have direct internet access through an Ethernet. Would it be possible to use an airport express in client mode to convert the wireless signal to Ethernet and then feed the microrendu through the AE Ethernet output, all controlled by audirvana. If this works, would hd audio be downsampled to 16/44, when I am using audirvana and would I lose audirvanas sound enhancements?

How's this, doesn't have the limitations of the Airport Express low sample rate, so if the DAC supports DSD512, no problem :

 

Existing wireless network -> New (or unused ) Apple Router in bridge mode -> Ethernet out from router -> microrendu network -> DAC

 

The Ethernet out would need to be a fixed range on the existing network. 

 

The complex bit:

If the network is 192.168.0.x subnet 255.255.255.0 on DHCP allow the existing router to restrict DHCP to the first 50 or so IP addresses.

For the microrendu router then take over 192.168.0.51 to 60 something.

If you let the new router take over whatever it likes, the message won't get through, since the Ethernet out will be on a different IP range. This will take some working out if you're not familiar with networking. By the time this all works, you will be comfortable in setting up networks....

 

You can play Audirvana+ to the maximum capabilities of the DAC since the microrendu can accept just about anything and this system will have very little latency, the Airport express would have to convert and is slow using airplay directly and 48/44.1 kHz 16 bit limitation.

Besides the AE can get hot working normally.

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On 12/25/2017 at 5:26 AM, One and a half said:

How's this, doesn't have the limitations of the Airport Express low sample rate, so if the DAC supports DSD512, no problem :

 

Existing wireless network -> New (or unused ) Apple Router in bridge mode -> Ethernet out from router -> microrendu network -> DAC

 

The Ethernet out would need to be a fixed range on the existing network. 

 

The complex bit:

If the network is 192.168.0.x subnet 255.255.255.0 on DHCP allow the existing router to restrict DHCP to the first 50 or so IP addresses.

For the microrendu router then take over 192.168.0.51 to 60 something.

If you let the new router take over whatever it likes, the message won't get through, since the Ethernet out will be on a different IP range. This will take some working out if you're not familiar with networking. By the time this all works, you will be comfortable in setting up networks....

 

You can play Audirvana+ to the maximum capabilities of the DAC since the microrendu can accept just about anything and this system will have very little latency, the Airport express would have to convert and is slow using airplay directly and 48/44.1 kHz 16 bit limitation.

Besides the AE can get hot working normally.

 

I think you are confusing the OP's question about using the Airport Express in client mode to allow any network device that doesn't have a built-in WiFi interface (ie, it only has an ethernet port for wired network connection), specifically the microRendu, to join the OP's wireless only network. So this is simply about using the AE as an external wireless adapter for the microRendu by connecting the AE to its ethernet port and has nothing to do with using the AE client mode's additional AirPlay function (and therefore AirPlay's audio streaming resolution is irrelevant). Please read:

AirPort Express: How to join an existing Wi-Fi network in client mode

 

BTW, AirPlay currently always network streams audio (in the ALAC file format) at a fixed CD quality resolution of 16bit/44.1kHz, so not sure where you are getting 48kHz from (further confusion with the AppleTV always resampling to output at a 16bit/48kHz resolution, perhaps?).

 

 

We will win because our NHS is the beating heart of this country. It is the best of this country. It is unconquerable. It is powered by love.

-- Boris Johnson

 

We are far more united and have far more in common with each other than things that divide us.

-- Jo Cox

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On 12/25/2017 at 4:10 AM, Browniesbane said:

Would it be possible to use an airport express in client mode to convert the wireless signal to Ethernet and then feed the microrendu through the AE Ethernet output

 

Yes, this should work for any network device with an ethernet port, assuming you have an AirPort Express with 802.11n, ie, not the original Airport Express 802.11g - as mentioned in the AE help page I linked to in my above post.

 

 

 

On 12/25/2017 at 4:10 AM, Browniesbane said:

I understand that audirvana is now compatible with microrendu, but I don’t have direct internet access through an Ethernet. Would it be possible to use an airport express in client mode to convert the wireless signal to Ethernet and then feed the microrendu through the AE Ethernet output, all controlled by audirvana. If this works, would hd audio be downsampled to 16/44, when I am using audirvana and would I lose audirvanas sound enhancements?

 

Audirvana Plus 3.1 should now be compatible with any UPnP/DLNA supporting streamer, not just the microRendu. So you could avoid using the Airport Express altogether if you choose to use a UPnP/DLNA streamer with wireless built-in. Audirvana Plus 3.1 decodes any PCM file format to network stream it via UPnP as a WAV file and send DSD natively or as DoP (as a WAV file) or convert to PCM (as a WAV file) if the streamer does not support DSD. It should also apply any PCM sound enhancements you have set, including MQA core (aka MQA first unfold) decoding.

 

Specifically with the microRendu, it should work and will not downsample to 16/44.1kHz, if you use UPnP/DLNA for streaming and not AirPlay. You need to set the microRendu in mode 3a UPnP/DLNA mode:

Screen Shot 2016-11-18 at 5.33.11 PM.png

 

and then specify the required maximum sample rate settings in Audirvana Plus 3.1's Preferences:

Screen Shot 2017-07-22 at 2.47.37 PM.png

We will win because our NHS is the beating heart of this country. It is the best of this country. It is unconquerable. It is powered by love.

-- Boris Johnson

 

We are far more united and have far more in common with each other than things that divide us.

-- Jo Cox

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4 hours ago, Cebolla said:

 

I think you are confusing the OP's question about using the Airport Express in client mode to allow any network device that doesn't have a built-in WiFi interface (ie, it only has an ethernet port for wired network connection), specifically the microRendu, to join the OP's wireless only network. So this is simply about using the AE as an external wireless adapter for the microRendu by connecting the AE to its ethernet port and has nothing to do with using the AE client mode's additional AirPlay function (and therefore AirPlay's audio streaming resolution is irrelevant). Please read:

AirPort Express: How to join an existing Wi-Fi network in client mode

 

BTW, AirPlay currently always network streams audio (in the ALAC file format) at a fixed CD quality resolution of 16bit/44.1kHz, so not sure where you are getting 48kHz from (further confusion with the AppleTV always resampling to output at a 16bit/48kHz resolution, perhaps?).

 

 

Thanks for the link which caused more confusion, since it describes client mode, not bridge mode. 

 

I can see using Audirvana+ in uPNP to send data direct to the microrendu. The main reason to use the router, is that it at least can accept 802.11ac mode when demand exceeds supply, in the case of the Airport Express is limited to g and n transmissions. I recall the Auralic Aries, early models of not having enough bandwidth for DSD due to wireless bandwidth limitation.

Of course, please state reasons why uPNP will work on a g or n system for sample rates, like DSD128.

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22 minutes ago, One and a half said:

Thanks for the link which caused more confusion, since it describes client mode, not bridge mode. 

 

I can see using Audirvana+ in uPNP to send data direct to the microrendu. The main reason to use the router, is that it at least can accept 802.11ac mode when demand exceeds supply, in the case of the Airport Express is limited to g and n transmissions. I recall the Auralic Aries, early models of not having enough bandwidth for DSD due to wireless bandwidth limitation.

Of course, please state reasons why uPNP will work on a g or n system for sample rates, like DSD128.

Is there any advantage or disadvantage to bridge mode for these purposes.

 

I assume that bridge mode is when you set up the AE to extend  the network and use the ethernet out?

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47 minutes ago, Browniesbane said:

Is there any advantage or disadvantage to bridge mode for these purposes.

 

I assume that bridge mode is when you set up the AE to extend  the network and use the ethernet out?

 

I would suggest not getting too caught up in minutia on this, many members including myself have been using the AEx to supply a microRendu with an Ethernet connection since spring 2016 when the microRendu was released. It works perfectly.

 

For the record, different manufacturers of different WiFi devices such as the AEx insist on using all different terminology to describe various modes of operation. While that can be maddening to some, it is also easily ignored in instances such as this. 

 

Apple's Airport Utility software gives 3 set-up options for the AEx: Create, Join, or Extend a wireless network. And while that may seem to others like Apple-speak and not the "proper" network terminology they are most comfortable with (i.e. client mode, bridge mode etc) thats irrelevant for your purpose.

 

You simply join the existing wireless network you already have, using that network's SSID and password. Once that's been done, you plug an Ethernet cable into the AEx and the microRendu and you are done.

 

As I said, it works quite well and is ultra stable. There is no sketchiness, dropouts, reboots needed or any other weirdness in my experience.

 

This is in stark contrast to the very reputable Netgear EX6150 "Range Extender", which is not only more difficult to do the initial set-up on, but it is flakey, sometimes misbehaves, and requires periodic reboots. Not worth the time trouble/hassle to save $50 or whatever it is, even with the lure of 802.11ac performance specs etc... it just doesn't work as well as the AEx does for this purpose.

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15 hours ago, One and a half said:

Thanks for the link which caused more confusion, since it describes client mode, not bridge mode. 

 

I can see using Audirvana+ in uPNP to send data direct to the microrendu. The main reason to use the router, is that it at least can accept 802.11ac mode when demand exceeds supply, in the case of the Airport Express is limited to g and n transmissions. I recall the Auralic Aries, early models of not having enough bandwidth for DSD due to wireless bandwidth limitation.

Of course, please state reasons why uPNP will work on a g or n system for sample rates, like DSD128.

Hopefully @MikeyFresh's post has finally cleared up your confusion.

 

It would be a pretty poor wireless N system if it couldn't cope with DSD128 worst case (ie, if you include the overhead required for DoP at 24/352.8kHz) UPnP/DLNA network streaming, which (assuming stereo) has a bitrate of ~17Mb/s!

 

Incidentally, you mentioning 'g' is moot. I repeat, the original AE 802.11g cannot be used this way as a wireless adapter, only the 'n' supporting later models can.

 

We will win because our NHS is the beating heart of this country. It is the best of this country. It is unconquerable. It is powered by love.

-- Boris Johnson

 

We are far more united and have far more in common with each other than things that divide us.

-- Jo Cox

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