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matthias

ALLO USBridge Signature

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3 hours ago, matthias said:

 

Which OS do you have for the SIG?

Thanks

 

Matt

My preferred OS is GentooPlayer.  That's what sounds best (to me) with a Digione Signature.  It has, among other things, a great ramdisk mode.

 

See GentooPlayer Link if interested (and use a browser that will translate the page unless Italian is your language).

 

I know that the author, antonellocaroli, is working to get everything working well with the USBridge Signature.

 

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23 hours ago, clipper said:

My preferred OS is GentooPlayer.  That's what sounds best (to me) with a Digione Signature.  It has, among other things, a great ramdisk mode.

See GentooPlayer Link if interested (and use a browser that will translate the page unless Italian is your language).

I know that the author, antonellocaroli, is working to get everything working well with the USBridge Signature.

 

As MoOde has also Sqeezelite renderer did you compare MoOde and GentooPlayer?

Thanks

 

Matt

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15 hours ago, matthias said:

 

As MoOde has also Sqeezelite renderer did you compare MoOde and GentooPlayer?

Thanks

 

Matt

I have not done that comparison, but I will.

 

 

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7 hours ago, uniquesnowflake said:

For those who have a spare low power computer lying around (extra RPi will do), I strongly recommend the minimal Picoreplayer. With some simple optimization, the SQ performance is a noticeable step up from Dietpi IME. I currently use the settings as recommmended by audio blog “[email protected]”.

Why two devices? Can't PiCorePlayer be used as OS on the USBridge Sig?

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18 hours ago, uniquesnowflake said:


To minimize the load. IME that usually affects SQ, YMMV.

It certainly can't hurt 🙂

 

Sniffed around Soundcheck's blog. Interesting stuff… My preferred Rasp OS is actually PiCorePlayer w/ LMS.

 

It isn't clear to me if your suggestion is to use an extra mini computer / RPI as server and let the USBridge handle the PCP OS or if you will only use the USBridge as an isolator and let the extra computer do all the hard work..?

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21 hours ago, dkskl said:

It certainly can't hurt 🙂

 

Sniffed around Soundcheck's blog. Interesting stuff… My preferred Rasp OS is actually PiCorePlayer w/ LMS.

 

It isn't clear to me if your suggestion is to use an extra mini computer / RPI as server and let the USBridge handle the PCP OS or if you will only use the USBridge as an isolator and let the extra computer do all the hard work..?

 

I'm currently using an extra low power computer as server, and Digione Sig/RPi as the "endpoint". I'll probably stick to this configuration except swapping RPi for the Audiophile Pi/USBridge Sig.

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Just received my USBridge Sig and installed my DigiOne Sig. looks like there’s a DietPi update but I also noted the comment about the Ethernet driver. Anyone know if the latest update includes the correct Ethernet driver?

 

 Also am I correct in thinking that in order to swap between USB and DigiOne I first need to charger the sound card setting in the Allo GUI before I can change the output device in Roon? If so that seems a tad clunky!


[br]QNAP+ -> Allo DigiOne Signature -> RequisiteAudio D3rs ->  McIntosh C52 -> McIntosh MC-275 MK VI -> Harbeth 30.1's via Roon

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3 hours ago, uniquesnowflake said:

 

I'm currently using an extra low power computer as server, and Digione Sig/RPi as the "endpoint". I'll probably stick to this configuration except swapping RPi for the Audiophile Pi/USBridge Sig.

Thanks. Could just be the way to go.

My Pi/Digione Sig is a damn good player though...

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1 hour ago, dmormerod said:

Just received my USBridge Sig and installed my DigiOne Sig. looks like there’s a DietPi update but I also noted the comment about the Ethernet driver. Anyone know if the latest update includes the correct Ethernet driver?

 

 Also am I correct in thinking that in order to swap between USB and DigiOne I first need to charger the sound card setting in the Allo GUI before I can change the output device in Roon? If so that seems a tad clunky!

I have a DigiOne Signature but it is mounted on a RPi, not on a USBridge Sig, and I do not use the Allo GUI. I use upmpdcli as a renderer and the RPi is headless. I can control the output of MPD (to the DigiOne Signature only, to a USB DAC only, to both, etc.) on the fly with mpc or ncmpcpp.   

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2 hours ago, dkskl said:

Thanks. Could just be the way to go.

My Pi/Digione Sig is a damn good player though...

 

I hear ya. My Pi/Digione Sig is damn good too, esp with the Shanti. 

 

If you hear a noticeable difference between the stock adapter and a high quality PS powering the dirty side, then the Audiophile Pi should be a worthwhile upgrade. I can't verify that (yet) since I'm in Paris and my "Pi Sig" just arrived in Taiwan, but speaking from experience*, the massive overhaul to power delivery and robust ethernet implementation is bound to bring about significant improvements.

 

*SoTM audophile switches and Pi without DC converters sound better than their mundane counterparts. Maybe I'm crazy ;)

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7 minutes ago, uniquesnowflake said:

 

I hear ya. My Pi/Digione Sig is damn good too, esp with the Shanti. 

 

If you hear a noticeable difference between the stock adapter and a high quality PS powering the dirty side, then the Audiophile Pi should be a worthwhile upgrade. I can't verify that (yet) since I'm in Paris and my "Pi Sig" just arrived in Taiwan, but speaking from experience*, the massive overhaul to power delivery and robust ethernet implementation is bound to bring about significant improvements.

 

*SoTM audophile switches and Pi without DC converters sound better than their mundane counterparts. Maybe I'm crazy ;)

But if you connect a USB stick or a SSD to the USBridge Sig you might still have a DC converter, I'm afraid. Generally speaking, I very much like the Allo approach. But I do not understand why they have decided not have WiFi on board in the USBridge Sig. This is, in my view, completely nonsense and the main reason why I am not going to order a unit. I also do not like the fact that in the case for the USBridge Sig + DigiOne Signature they have yet another kind of connector with yet another cable connecting this connector to the USB-C connector of the clean side. This is lack of modularity and rather poor engineering, in my view. Just my two cents, of course. 

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15 minutes ago, nbpf said:

But I do not understand why they have decided not have WiFi on board in the USBridge Sig. 

 

AFAIK, with on board WiFi you can not use an aluminum case without external antennae. 

External antennae would increase price and complexity.

 

I have plans to pick up the WiFi signal with a MBP/Audirvana and stream via a short ethernet cable to the SIG.

 

Matt

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14 minutes ago, nbpf said:

But if you connect a USB stick or a SSD to the USBridge Sig you might still have a DC converter, I'm afraid. Generally speaking, I very much like the Allo approach. But I do not understand why they have decided not have WiFi on board in the USBridge Sig. This is, in my view, completely nonsense and the main reason why I am not going to order a unit. I also do not like the fact that in the case for the USBridge Sig + DigiOne Signature they have yet another kind of connector with yet another cable connecting this connector to the USB-C connector of the clean side. This is lack of modularity and rather poor engineering, in my view. Just my two cents, of course. 

 

The Audiophile Pi is perfect for my setup (ethernet, streaming from server), but I can see why it doesn't work out for you. Allo mentioned a WiFi dongle that would be available separately somewhere down the line. 

 

I dislike excess connectors myself, especially USB types for power. I plan on bypassing the Type-C connector on the clean side and go straight from the 5.5x2.1mm connector to PCB.

 

Still, while the USBridge+Dig Sig case is not as elegant as I hoped, I don't really fault Allo as the Digione Sig was released more than a year ago. 

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18 minutes ago, matthias said:

 

AFAIK, with on board WiFi you can not use an aluminum case without external antennae. 

External antennae would increase price and complexity.

...

Sure, but an external antenna would allow to use the USBridge Sig in environments where a wired connection is not possible or to use it as an integrated server + renderer solution. I am afraid that the USBridge Sig is another half backed solution like the DigiOne Signature. Great devices if they happen to fit one's need  but at the same time missed opportunities to build a really modular platform with upgradeable components and a future proof design.

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25 minutes ago, uniquesnowflake said:

 

The Audiophile Pi is perfect for my setup (ethernet, streaming from server), but I can see why it doesn't work out for you. Allo mentioned a WiFi dongle that would be available separately somewhere down the line. 

 

I dislike excess connectors myself, especially USB types for power. I plan on bypassing the Type-C connector on the clean side and go straight from the 5.5x2.1mm connector to PCB.

 

Still, while the USBridge+Dig Sig case is not as elegant as I hoped, I don't really fault Allo as the Digione Sig was released more than a year ago. 

Perhaps they will eventually come out with a new DigiOne Signature board that better fits the board of the USBridge Sig. Or with yet another different small board. We will see, time will tell ...  

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I wouldn’t call them half baked just because they don’t suit your usage. Most people are wired and adding Digione is an incidental plus. I think they target a user type and produce a product. Seems like a fair model. Prices are still good. More add ons increase price. They have picked their market.

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4 hours ago, Tintinabulum said:

I wouldn’t call them half baked just because they don’t suit your usage. Most people are wired and adding Digione is an incidental plus. I think they target a user type and produce a product. Seems like a fair model. Prices are still good. More add ons increase price. They have picked their market.

I am not calling the products half baked because they do not suit my usage. The DigiOne Signature perfectly suits my needs and still I think it's an half backed product.

 

The new USBridge Sig is half baked because, as you point out, adding an S/PDIF output to the board is an incidental plus rather than a well designed modular extension. And because it involves yet another adapter cable and a different connector than the original USB C connector of the DigiOne Signature.  

 

Perhaps  half-baked is not a fitting expression here because all these products work quite nicely by themselves. And I can see the difficulties of a more modular design. Still, I believe that Allo could and should do better. Thus, if they do not manage to manufacture durable, modular products, they should at least offer users the possibility of sending back their old Allo boards and have them recycled in a meaningful way.

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People who use these boards are semi DIYers, probably not needing smart boxes. Probably not many using USB and SPDIF for DACs. SPDIF people are unlikely to upgrade from DigiOne Sig for a minor SQ tweak. Allo have an unusual model, and a smallish target market currently. Works for me because of the end result. Five years time- interesting to see where we are then.

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Regarding the critics of the Allo USBridge......

 

What i wonder is why allo use an ethernet-over-usb solution for the ethernet port. I moved from rpi to allo because allo sparky had ( as far as i know) an ethernet port connected (via PCI?) directly without using the USB bus - in opposite to raspberryPi.

The fact that allo has to patch the drivers for the ethernet over usb chipset make me feel they face exactly the same problems which RPI's had in past: performance problems and dropouts at playing highres files, which have to be read in and send out (PCM) over the same usb bus. This was obvious especially with real time kernels.

Has anybody experiences playing highres files with standard kernel?

Has anybody experiences playing highres files with real time kernel?

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2 minutes ago, senior.god said:

Regarding the critics of the Allo USBridge......

 

What i wonder is why allo use an ethernet-over-usb solution for the ethernet port. I moved from rpi to allo because allo sparky had ( as far as i know) an ethernet port connected (via PCI?) directly without using the USB bus - in opposite to raspberryPi.

The fact that allo has to patch the drivers for the ethernet over usb chipset make me feel they face exactly the same problems which RPI's had in past: performance problems and dropouts at playing highres files, which have to be read in and send out (PCM) over the same usb bus. This was obvious especially with real time kernels.

Has anybody experiences playing highres files with standard kernel?

Has anybody experiences playing highres files with real time kernel?

I do not have a USBridge Sig but wth RPi3 I never had any problem reading from a USB SSD or HDD and sending out to a Shiit Eitr 24bits/192KHz files through the same bus. I currently shut down the USB bus of the RPi3 that hosts my DigiOne Signature and stream from a server to the RPi3 via wireless. Also in this case, streaming of 24bits/192KHz files works flawlessly. I have never tried extensive tests of streaming via LAN and sending out to the Eitr via USB thus using the same bus, however. The above remarks apply both to the standard kernel and to a self compiled RT kernel. At the moment I am not using the RT kernel anymore. I think that the RPi4 has an Ethernet on-board, not Ethernet-over-usb but I might be mistaken.

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11 hours ago, nbpf said:

Sure, but an external antenna would allow to use the USBridge Sig in environments where a wired connection is not possible or to use it as an integrated server + renderer solution. I am afraid that the USBridge Sig is another half backed solution like the DigiOne Signature. Great devices if they happen to fit one's need  but at the same time missed opportunities to build a really modular platform with upgradeable components and a future proof design.

Hello Nfbf

 

   We understand that everyone has an opinion . Designing a good audio device...with a good price is not a trivial task .

 

We believe our USbriddge Sig is a modular design and will release n the future a few upgrades . Meanwhile , there are always other choices in the market , if our product does not suit you.

 

 

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1 hour ago, senior.god said:

Regarding the critics of the Allo USBridge......

 

What i wonder is why allo use an ethernet-over-usb solution for the ethernet port. I moved from rpi to allo because allo sparky had ( as far as i know) an ethernet port connected (via PCI?) directly without using the USB bus - in opposite to raspberryPi.

The fact that allo has to patch the drivers for the ethernet over usb chipset make me feel they face exactly the same problems which RPI's had in past: performance problems and dropouts at playing highres files, which have to be read in and send out (PCM) over the same usb bus. This was obvious especially with real time kernels.

Has anybody experiences playing highres files with standard kernel?

Has anybody experiences playing highres files with real time kernel?

 

 

A rather complicated answer ..

 

   Sparky had a direct connection Ethernet to the SOC (rgmii I think not pcie or pci) and still we needed to patch many drivers for DACs since the USB kernel was old

 

   The main problem with USB audio...is that end devices are not always compliant.To compound this , even hardware (USB hub ic ) behaves differently (pops) depending on make etc.

 

  Our solution was to use a Axis IC for ethernet and we chose one of the best HUB ic from TI  (with buffers) and we worked directly with Asix company in Taiwan to improve the standard driver and get rid of all pops in audio USB

 

   Now the Rasbian has the Axis driver (not that great for audio USB) ...and we did submit the new driver(2 months ago) Unfortunately it takes time to integrate in  , we are still waiting for it.

 

  Meanwhile are working with all players and  Moode , PCP , Max2play, Ropiiie  , have already the correct driver . From what I know DietPI will have it soon .

 

   In essence ANY usb renderer will have 2 issues. Kernel (how old) and hardware compatibility to your DAC.

 

Lets take a RPI (3 of 4) and connect direct to your DAC. In many DACs you will get pops etc , since its not a Kernel but the hub ic (driver) is not very good for USB audio

 

 We think that USbridge Sig solved those issues. Yes you still need ( to update manually the driver on some audio players), but we hope thats a small price to pay for having the latest kernel , a great HUB ic that we tested versus many DACs and also...a low noise USB feed.

 

 

 

  Enjoy.

 

 

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