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Article: Sonore opticalRendu & Signature Rendu SE Optical Review | Part 1

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I know its counter-intuitive but there is no speed advantage in storing music files locally.

 

There is the disadvantage that locally stored files cause increased processing due to SD card access, as opposed to fiberoptic ethernet which completely isolates the music server processing (including disc access) from the DAC.


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37 minutes ago, jabbr said:

I know its counter-intuitive but there is no speed advantage in storing music files locally.

 

There is the disadvantage that locally stored files cause increased processing due to SD card access, as opposed to fiberoptic ethernet which completely isolates the music server processing (including disc access) from the DAC.

I'll disagree all day long with this. 

 

Do some real world testing of pressing play on a track stored locally and a track stored on a NAS. The NAS will never be faster to start playing. It's really angles on the head of a pin because the difference is minuscule most of the time.

 

I believe you are excluding any processing that needs to happen when a file comes over the network in your comparison. Easy access of local disk requires less than receiving the file over a network and dealing with SMB protocol file transfers. 

 

If you want to bring in music server processing then all bets are off because that's a different game all together. 


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32 minutes ago, The Computer Audiophile said:

I'll disagree all day long with this. 

 

Do some real world testing of pressing play on a track stored locally and a track stored on a NAS. The NAS will never be faster to start playing. It's really angles on the head of a pin because the difference is minuscule most of the time.

 

I believe you are excluding any processing that needs to happen when a file comes over the network in your comparison. Easy access of local disk requires less than receiving the file over a network and dealing with SMB protocol file transfers. 

 

If you want to bring in music server processing then all bets are off because that's a different game all together. 

I have to agree with Chris on this one. I know people will try to decide what sounds better and that is fine with me. From my perspective this is about giving people options. Chris focused on LMS / SqueezeLite because he wanted to integrate other streaming services. I have been using MPD for the ultimate through back experience:) IMO MPD is the king of local playback. Also, we have an option to mount remote drives if you prefer that. 

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2 hours ago, The Computer Audiophile said:

I'll disagree all day long with this. 

 

Do some real world testing of pressing play on a track stored locally and a track stored on a NAS. The NAS will never be faster to start playing. It's really angles on the head of a pin because the difference is minuscule most of the time.

 

Well actually ...

 

Where do we press "play"? What do you consider local? In my case I'm increasingly using Roon on my iPhone to determine what gets send to HQPlayer embedded and then to my current NAA. The biggest "latency" for me is deciding and finding what to play next! ;) So user experience is key -- totally agree.

 

Regarding disc vs network access latency: I've looked into (and personally tested) these issues extensively not for audio but for video storage and processing. That's what I installed my 10Gbe system for. I've also compared Infiniband to Ethernet ... a lot of this has to do with network latency. I can assure you that the time between when you start to press "play" and when the button makes contact is several infinities longer than the actual disc drive or network latency, but for the sake of discussion ...

 

1) if you are using Wi-Fi to control the oR, then the latency has much more to do with the WiFi latency than disc vs network latency.

2) I can't comment on your own experience with the oR, rather on this issue in general, and my personal experience has all to do with my own network.

3) latency is a huge issue in NAS, and the most modern NAS are starting to use NVME over Fabrics (including Ethernet): https://blog.netapp.com/nvme-over-fabric/

4) modern networks can saturate a PCIe connection

 

which leads to ...

5) Where the file is located is not necessarily the limiting factor for latency and access, rather the medium on which the file is stored

6) my own NAS is much faster than any single disc drive, ssd or sd card that I own (Its just an Ubuntu server with 64Gb RAM, a SAS3 array and a 10Gbe NIC)

 

Quote

 

I believe you are excluding any processing that needs to happen when a file comes over the network in your comparison. Easy access of local disk requires less than receiving the file over a network and dealing with SMB protocol file transfers. 

 

SMB has been made crazy efficient

 

Quote

 

If you want to bring in music server processing then all bets are off because that's a different game all together. 

 

Absolutely because lets use the server to upsample/convert everything ... also

 

Lets not worry where files are located, lets not worry about searching through stacks of LPs or CDs ... make your house into a private cloud :) 


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1 hour ago, vortecjr said:

I have to agree with Chris on this one. I know people will try to decide what sounds better and that is fine with me. From my perspective this is about giving people options. Chris focused on LMS / SqueezeLite because he wanted to integrate other streaming services. I have been using MPD for the ultimate through back experience:) IMO MPD is the king of local playback. Also, we have an option to mount remote drives if you prefer that. 

 

Options are great. My statement was in regard to local vs network music storage ... streaming is the ultimate network, my library is terabytes, I don't want to search through directories, so again how does storing music on a SD help me?

 

It does occur that you or anyone with an oR could test this by, as you note, mounting a 1 Tb network drive with the same contents as a 1Tb SD card and then comparing user experience. In the process of optimizing my network (for video processing) I compared local vs network file access speeds. This can be easily done for the oR!


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1 hour ago, jabbr said:

The biggest "latency" for me is deciding and finding what to play next!

 

That is very much my dilemma.!  I recently switched to Roon (>HQ Embedded on Linux systems) from just drag and drop (from iTunes) into HQ Player Desktop. Despite the much more visual interface I still have trouble deciding which of my 1,200+ albums to play. 9_9

Serious first-world problem I know...

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4 minutes ago, Superdad said:

 

That is very much my dilemma.!  I recently switched to Roon (>HQ Embedded on Linux systems) from just drag and drop (from iTunes) into HQ Player Desktop. Despite the much more visual interface I still have trouble deciding which of my 1,200+ albums to play. 9_9

Serious first-world problem I know...

 

Yep! I've got my laptop open doing something, and use my iPhone to control Roon. Possibly if iTunes both used FLAC and DSF (DSD) then I'd have no reason for Roon. But I like the Roon GUI better ...


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2 hours ago, jabbr said:

Regarding disc vs network access latency: I've looked into (and personally tested) these issues extensively not for audio but for video storage and processing. That's what I installed my 10Gbe system for. I've also compared Infiniband to Ethernet ... a lot of this has to do with network latency. I can assure you that the time between when you start to press "play" and when the button makes contact is several infinities longer than the actual disc drive or network latency, but for the sake of discussion ...

Think about it though, network playback also requires disk access plus network latencies. Your point about latency proves my point. I said network was slower and you said not really but it’s slower because of latency. Not really following you but there’s no getting around the fact that network includes a file read and latencies whereas local on the sd card just requires the file read. 

 

 

 

2 hours ago, jabbr said:

1) if you are using Wi-Fi to control the oR, then the latency has much more to do with the WiFi latency than disc vs network latency.

 

We still have network latency. 

 

 

 

2 hours ago, jabbr said:

3) latency is a huge issue in NAS, and the most modern NAS are starting to use NVME over Fabrics (including Ethernet): https://blog.netapp.com/nvme-over-fabric/

 

Agree. Which is why SD cards are really cool for small libraries. 

 

 

 

 

 

2 hours ago, jabbr said:

4) modern networks can saturate a PCIe connection

 

which leads to ...

5) Where the file is located is not necessarily the limiting factor for latency and access, rather the medium on which the file is stored

6) my own NAS is much faster than any single disc drive, ssd or sd card that I own (Its just an Ubuntu server with 64Gb RAM, a SAS3 array and a 10Gbe NIC)

 

I think you are you are off in the weeds. Cool 10GbE weeds but pulling an 80 MB music file for playback none of this really matters. Any Roon end point or DLNA renderer that can benefit from 10 GbE will really surprise me. 

 

 

 

 

2 hours ago, jabbr said:

SMB has been made crazy efficient

 

Sure but it’s like being the tallest dwarf. 

 

 

PS - Do you get to RMAF? Would love to meet up. 


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11 minutes ago, The Computer Audiophile said:

Think about it though, network playback also requires disk access plus network latencies. Your point about latency proves my point. I said network was slower and you said not really but it’s slower because of latency. Not really following you but there’s no getting around the fact that network includes a file read and latencies whereas local on the sd card just requires the file read. 

 

Great point except ...

 

My NAS has 64Gb of RAM which ZFS uses as cache ... most disc reads never hit the iron (or plastic as the case may be). 

 

I'm essentially doing memory to memory (see https://www.samba.org/~metze/presentations/2018/SDC/StefanMetzmacher_SDC2018-SMB-Direct-Status-rev1-presentation.pdf)

 

This is all built into Ubuntu and hence FREE ... don't worry and just use the network, really :)

 

 

11 minutes ago, The Computer Audiophile said:

I think you are you are off in the weeds.

 

11 minutes ago, The Computer Audiophile said:

Cool 10GbE weeds but pulling an 80 MB music file for playback none of this really matters. Any Roon end point or DLNA renderer that can benefit from 10 GbE will really surprise me. 

 

This stuff has become dirt cheap (at least on eBay where I get all my home networking equipment). The 10 Gbe switches all have great clocks (per specification). I see folks worrying about all sorts of details like special power supplies for disc drives and special Ethernet cables and hacking Ethernet switches to "upgrade" clocks etc...

 

I was off in the weeds five years ago when started to use optical Ethernet, so ha ha ... I'm thrilled to see reasonably affordable products come to market. I'm glad folks like the sound ... 

 

stop worrying and learn to love the network 😂😂😂😎

 

11 minutes ago, The Computer Audiophile said:

Sure but it’s like being the tallest dwarf. 

 

SMB Direct is really good stuff.

11 minutes ago, The Computer Audiophile said:

 

PS - Do you get to RMAF? Would love to meet up. 

I haven't but that would be great, love Denver and doing a bit more traveling this year for a new project so I might be able to arrange a convenient stop


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2 hours ago, jabbr said:

 

Options are great. My statement was in regard to local vs network music storage ... streaming is the ultimate network, my library is terabytes, I don't want to search through directories, so again how does storing music on a SD help me?

 

It does occur that you or anyone with an oR could test this by, as you note, mounting a 1 Tb network drive with the same contents as a 1Tb SD card and then comparing user experience. In the process of optimizing my network (for video processing) I compared local vs network file access speeds. This can be easily done for the oR!

Maybe it doesn’t help you but that is not a requirement for others. If I have a customer that needs or wants local storage this is a great solution for that. Not a lot of people mount a drive because it a pain for them. If you turn on the unit with local storage you know where the content is each time. With remote file sharing the IP address can change and require one to reconfigure things. 

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13 minutes ago, jabbr said:

 

Great point except ...

 

My NAS has 64Gb of RAM which ZFS uses as cache ... most disc reads never hit the iron (or plastic as the case may be). 

 

I'm essentially doing memory to memory (see https://www.samba.org/~metze/presentations/2018/SDC/StefanMetzmacher_SDC2018-SMB-Direct-Status-rev1-presentation.pdf)

 

This is all built into Ubuntu and hence FREE ... don't worry and just use the network, really :)

 

 

 

 

This stuff has become dirt cheap (at least on eBay where I get all my home networking equipment). The 10 Gbe switches all have great clocks (per specification). I see folks worrying about all sorts of details like special power supplies for disc drives and special Ethernet cables and hacking Ethernet switches to "upgrade" clocks etc...

 

I was off in the weeds five years ago when started to use optical Ethernet, so ha ha ... I'm thrilled to see reasonably affordable products come to market. I'm glad folks like the sound ... 

 

stop worrying and learn to love the network 😂😂😂😎

 

 

SMB Direct is really good stuff.

I haven't but that would be great, love Denver and doing a bit more traveling this year for a new project so I might be able to arrange a convenient stop

If you want to discuss this then open a new thread. This thread should be about Chris’ review of the Sonore opticalRendu. 

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2 minutes ago, vortecjr said:

Maybe it doesn’t help you but that is not a requirement for others. If I have a customer that needs or wants local storage this is a great solution for that. Not a lot of people mount a drive because it a pain for them. If you turn on the unit with local storage you know where the content is each time. With remote file sharing the IP address can change and require one to reconfigure things. 

 

I am all for providing options. Your product should allow the device to be used in as many ways as possible.

 

The only thing I am promoting (at no personal gain) is an overall vision of networked home audio/video.

 

I would discuss the best way to configure which involves the DHCP server assigning known IP addresses to known MAC addresses. The Zeroconf approach came from Appletalk originally, and I gave up Appletalk for SMB/netbios some years ago. So yes, you want to be able to turn on a device and just use it. No doubt having an SD card is useful when the network is down or unavailable ... I certainly keep a cache of music on my iPhone when traveling.

 

That said, for the reasons I outlined above having music on an SD card does not reduce latency that's all ... I remember a few years ago when folks thought that network switches introduced noise and have gone on to set up direct connections between a PC and something like the Rendu (in various flavors). This, IMHO, has created a whole host of problems and is simply bad networking practice. So lets move beyond that and do things the right way. Since I don't have to worry about pissing off customers, I'm free to give my unvarnished opinions  -- nice work :) 


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14 minutes ago, vortecjr said:

If you want to discuss this then open a new thread. This thread should be about Chris’ review of the Sonore opticalRendu. 

 

I was responding directly to Chris regarding the latency of SD vs NAS. He suggested that I "do some real world testing" and I have. I explained the exact conditions under which my real world testing occured. I am not sure of Chris' intentions here but the article wasn't posted on the Sonore sub-forum. In any case I have nothing more to add.


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11 minutes ago, jabbr said:

 

I am all for providing options. Your product should allow the device to be used in as many ways as possible.

 

The only thing I am promoting (at no personal gain) is an overall vision of networked home audio/video.

 

I would discuss the best way to configure which involves the DHCP server assigning known IP addresses to known MAC addresses. The Zeroconf approach came from Appletalk originally, and I gave up Appletalk for SMB/netbios some years ago. So yes, you want to be able to turn on a device and just use it. No doubt having an SD card is useful when the network is down or unavailable ... I certainly keep a cache of music on my iPhone when traveling.

 

That said, for the reasons I outlined above having music on an SD card does not reduce latency that's all ... I remember a few years ago when folks thought that network switches introduced noise and have gone on to set up direct connections between a PC and something like the Rendu (in various flavors). This, IMHO, has created a whole host of problems and is simply bad networking practice. So lets move beyond that and do things the right way. Since I don't have to worry about pissing off customers, I'm free to give my unvarnished opinions  -- nice work :) 

Most people will not understand what you proposed...they just want things to work. I also thought connecting a Rendu to a computer was a stupid idea. I have no issue giving my unvarnished opinion:) 

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20 minutes ago, jabbr said:

 

I was responding directly to Chris regarding the latency of SD vs NAS. He suggested that I "do some real world testing" and I have. I explained the exact conditions under which my real world testing occured. I am not sure of Chris' intentions here but the article wasn't posted on the Sonore sub-forum. In any case I have nothing more to add.

Reviews are not generally posted in subsections.

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20 minutes ago, vortecjr said:

If you want to discuss this then open a new thread. This thread should be about Chris’ review of the Sonore opticalRendu....Reviews are not generally posted in subsections.

 

Seems to me like it is Chris’ thread and he will tell us if posts don’t belong. 


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3 hours ago, vortecjr said:

I don’t need Chris to tell me that RAM on a NAS and eBay purchase is of topic. Anyway, carry on as you see fit.

 

Chris would respond except that he’s currently bidding on eBay for more RAM for his NAS :) 


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56 minutes ago, jabbr said:

 

Chris would respond except that he’s currently bidding on eBay for more RAM for his NAS :) 

Ha. Used to use free NAS which used RAM like a monster. But I still couldn’t get enough GBs for my library 😁


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Chris,

 

Welcome to OLD is NEW again.  Sort of like clothing styles!

 

 

I really like the idea of new new local storage option for the Rendu lineup.  It will be interesting to see if we can hear a difference between the local storage and a NAS.  I have not tried that yet with my current setup! But it is spinning disk locally vs NAS not SD card.

 

I am slowly looking at my library and finding where I cross over between streaming and local.  I want to do some listening tests between the two. I am thinking about archiving the parts of my library that are available on streaming to reduce library size, etc...


 

Have you tried using the new modern UI addon for LMS?  It is pretty nice.  Nothing wrong with ipeng.

 

 

It will be interesting to get your insights on changing your speakers and your digital playback system.  Going to be a busy summer in the new listening room!  Have fun.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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@The Computer Audiophile,

 

I have been reading your article over again and I was wondering if you could elaborate a bit more on running LMS on the the Rendu please?  I see it from a simplicity point, which is what the article seems to be targeted towards.

 

I was thinking about running LMS on my NAS but that adds complexity.  Right now my library is too big so I am using the NAS for storage.  

 

bob

 

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I started a new post to show how things work when using the local storage / playback with the new high capacity micro SD cards. The first example shows local playback with MPD. I'll show an example using LMS next. 

 

https://audiophilestyle.com/forums/topic/56707-sonicorbiter-high-capacity-micro-sd-card/ 

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