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Hi, folks --

 

My current and newly (partially) updated HTPC has Windows 10 Pro 64-bit 2004-build stored on a Samsung 840 EVO 128GB SSD, but I'm contemplating the upgrade(?) to an M.2 SSD (2280) NVMe standard for my OS (not music storage), a standard that the new Gigabyte Z390 D ATX motherboard in my HTPC supports. The rationale behind this possible change isn't necessarily speed per se (although overall performance will likely see a significant boost), but rather that it may have a positive effect on sound quality.

 

What are your thoughts and experiences here with M.2 NVMe SSD's for OS storage; do they wring out more sonic potential compared to a SATA SSD like the one I have, and if so how is this attained mostly effectively? Much has been written about RAM types and sizes and what suits audio reproduction the best, but is there a general guideline in regards to M.2 NVMe SSD's and what to go after for best sound quality? I'm circling the A-Data XPG SX8200 Pro series, 256 or 512GB, also because of their low power consumption compared to alternative brands, but Intel Optane variants seem popular around here - albeit at high prices - and with fairly low capacity to boot. Is higher capacity values and sound quality mutually exclusive, even? Please chime in.

 

/Mikael 

Source: Synology NAS > DIY Mediaserver • Software: JRiver MC26 DLNA/Fidelizer 8.5 Digital output: Audiophilleo 2 + PurePower/RME 9632 • DAC/preamp: Blue Cheese Audio Roquefort Digital cross-over: Xilica XP-3060 • Speakers: Electro-Voice TS940D LX (for active config.)  Subwoofers: 2 x MicroWrecker (tapped horn) • Poweramp EV horns: Belles SA-30 • Subs and EV bass amp: 2 x Crown K2 • Speaker cables: Mundorf silver/gold + Duelund DCA16GA (shotgun config.) • IC: Mundorf silver/gold XLR-RCA/Mogami 2549 XLR-XLR • Subs cable: Cordial CLS 425 • Power cables: 15AWG Solid-core wire w/IeGo pure copper plugs (DIY)

 

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Oh, well - a bit of read-up here on those M.2 NVMe SSD's indicates low latency and low power consumption to certainly be among the vital factors in attaining a desired sonic outcome - whether it's mostly a subjective assessment or not, with some assessments in particular that gain traction. Capacity value, high or low, appears irrelevant. Intel's Optane variants have run to the lead in named categories, at the highest prices of course - go figure. 

 

My take will likely be for a relatively cheap M.2 NVMe variant spec-tested successfully in real-world conditions, namely Kingston's A2000 (500GB). It sports quite nice latency and power consumption numbers, and yet: how dreadfully incognito in regards to hifi-sensibilities, right? We'll see how that fares. 

Source: Synology NAS > DIY Mediaserver • Software: JRiver MC26 DLNA/Fidelizer 8.5 Digital output: Audiophilleo 2 + PurePower/RME 9632 • DAC/preamp: Blue Cheese Audio Roquefort Digital cross-over: Xilica XP-3060 • Speakers: Electro-Voice TS940D LX (for active config.)  Subwoofers: 2 x MicroWrecker (tapped horn) • Poweramp EV horns: Belles SA-30 • Subs and EV bass amp: 2 x Crown K2 • Speaker cables: Mundorf silver/gold + Duelund DCA16GA (shotgun config.) • IC: Mundorf silver/gold XLR-RCA/Mogami 2549 XLR-XLR • Subs cable: Cordial CLS 425 • Power cables: 15AWG Solid-core wire w/IeGo pure copper plugs (DIY)

 

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@seeteeyou --

 

Thank you for the detailed info on the Intel Optane item. Although not outrageously priced (except perhaps in relation to capacity..) it's still fairly expensive. Latency numbers in particular are impressive, but if they're 'Random' measurements the Kingston A2000 isn't far off, nor is the stated power consumption by comparison. 

 

Still, what's the significance as it applies to perceived sound; is it a matter of specs in particular categories like latency and power usage, and/or more a matter of hardware details and the specific components used? It seems to me, and I may become unpopular claiming this, that there's a rather blind(?) adherence to the Intel Optane's (or the Apacer ECC RAM's for that matter, though consensus based on actual listening impressions seems more broadly applied here), simply because they've been favorably tested (compared to what?) by a select few individuals that for some reason have become the über-maestro's as sonic evaluators for others to follow. Or, is it truly a matter of broad consensus based on individual experiences, compared to a variety of others brands, that the Optane is the preferred choice of an M.2 NVMe SSD?

Source: Synology NAS > DIY Mediaserver • Software: JRiver MC26 DLNA/Fidelizer 8.5 Digital output: Audiophilleo 2 + PurePower/RME 9632 • DAC/preamp: Blue Cheese Audio Roquefort Digital cross-over: Xilica XP-3060 • Speakers: Electro-Voice TS940D LX (for active config.)  Subwoofers: 2 x MicroWrecker (tapped horn) • Poweramp EV horns: Belles SA-30 • Subs and EV bass amp: 2 x Crown K2 • Speaker cables: Mundorf silver/gold + Duelund DCA16GA (shotgun config.) • IC: Mundorf silver/gold XLR-RCA/Mogami 2549 XLR-XLR • Subs cable: Cordial CLS 425 • Power cables: 15AWG Solid-core wire w/IeGo pure copper plugs (DIY)

 

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Not so sure about that "a select few individuals" part, even the world famous SGM Extreme got Optane 900P installed

 

https://audiophilestyle.com/ca/reviews/reality-quest-going-to-extremes-with-the-taiko-audio-sgm-extreme-part-2-of-5-r908/

 

For the lowest latency out there, just go for something with Samsung B-Die and then try RAM disk instead of SSD

 

http://jplay.eu/forum/index.php?/topic/2658-ramdisk-with-windows-server-20162019-configuration-guide/

 

16GB of RAM should be more than enough

 

https://twitter.com/mohrpheus78/status/1298967049289506821

SLzSRBp.png

 

IMHO if you're still having any doubt about SGM Extreme and others, no one will stop you to buy whole bunch of drives and compare all of them on your own. That's the only to find out what really works best for you.

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On 9/10/2020 at 12:49 PM, seeteeyou said:

Not so sure about that "a select few individuals" part, even the world famous SGM Extreme got Optane 900P installed

 

https://audiophilestyle.com/ca/reviews/reality-quest
-going-to-extremes-with-the-taiko-audio-sgm-extreme-part-2-of-5-r908/

 

(with all due respect to poster @ray-dude's awesome build) Exactly my point; is that necessarily telling of the Optane's sonic strength compared to cheaper alternatives, also with impressive latency, power consumption and read/write speeds? If the Optane is still in a slight(?) lead in regards to latency and power consumption specs, how much does it matter as it pertains to actually perceived, audible impressions? It seems to me the Optane has become the default go-to item as boot memory, following the lead of a few other individuals, that as of late - or ever, really? - hasn't undergone testing against cheaper M.2 NVMe devices, devices that I gather would still make a worthwhile difference compared to SATA SSD's here?

As poster @lmitche wrote:
 

Quote

Tuning the OS to play music is all about reducing non-music related activity. Your newly issued optane drive is the fastest drive in the world. Guess what, if your computer spends less time waiting for a Windows log file to write to completion, the more time it has to make music.  You are hearing the benefits of this.  

 

Why would the Optane be exclusive to these traits?

 

Quote

 

For the lowest latency out there, just go for something with Samsung B-Die and then try RAM disk instead of SSD

 

http://jplay.eu/forum/index.php?/topic/2658-ramdisk-with-windows-server-20162019-configuration-guide/

 

16GB of RAM should be more than enough

 

https://twitter.com/mohrpheus78/status/1298967049289506821

SLzSRBp.png

 

Thanks for the heads-up on this. I'll keep it in mind for future (Windows Server) consideration, but as is isn't an option being that I use the consumer variant of Windows 10 (Pro 64-bit) and therefore takes up too much space.  

 

Quote

IMHO if you're still having any doubt about SGM Extreme and others, no one will stop you to buy whole bunch of drives and compare all of them on your own. That's the only to find out what really works best for you.

 

It's not doubt over the SGM Extreme as such (I can only gather it must be a sonic bliss as a server-source device), but sure; the only way I can ever become the wiser on my inquiry or otherwise get some first-person perspective into the matter is to roll up my sleeves, pony up the dough and start comparing a bunch M.2 NVMe devices. I'd just appreciate some insight into whether others has done similarly and learn of their views to begin with, but going by your evasive answer it would seem it's a limited field of experience.  

 

My Kingston A2000 M.2 NVMe SSD (500GB) should arrive tomorrow, and I would expect the upcoming weekend to have some first impressions ready. We'll see..

 

Thanks for your insights so far. 

Source: Synology NAS > DIY Mediaserver • Software: JRiver MC26 DLNA/Fidelizer 8.5 Digital output: Audiophilleo 2 + PurePower/RME 9632 • DAC/preamp: Blue Cheese Audio Roquefort Digital cross-over: Xilica XP-3060 • Speakers: Electro-Voice TS940D LX (for active config.)  Subwoofers: 2 x MicroWrecker (tapped horn) • Poweramp EV horns: Belles SA-30 • Subs and EV bass amp: 2 x Crown K2 • Speaker cables: Mundorf silver/gold + Duelund DCA16GA (shotgun config.) • IC: Mundorf silver/gold XLR-RCA/Mogami 2549 XLR-XLR • Subs cable: Cordial CLS 425 • Power cables: 15AWG Solid-core wire w/IeGo pure copper plugs (DIY)

 

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41 minutes ago, phusis said:

 

(with all due respect to poster @ray-dude's awesome build) Exactly my point; is that necessarily telling of the Optane's sonic strength compared to cheaper alternatives, also with impressive latency, power consumption and read/write speeds? If the Optane is still in a slight(?) lead in regards to latency and power consumption specs, how much does it matter as it pertains to actually perceived, audible impressions? It seems to me the Optane has become the default go-to item as boot memory, following the lead of a few other individuals, that as of late - or ever, really? - hasn't undergone testing against cheaper M.2 NVMe devices, devices that I gather would still make a worthwhile difference compared to SATA SSD's here?

As poster @lmitche wrote:
 

 

Why would the Optane be exclusive to these traits?

 

 

Thanks for the heads-up on this. I'll keep it in mind for future (Windows Server) consideration, but as is isn't an option being that I use the consumer variant of Windows 10 (Pro 64-bit) and therefore takes up too much space.  

 

 

It's not doubt over the SGM Extreme as such (I can only gather it must be a sonic bliss as a server-source device), but sure; the only way I can ever become the wiser on my inquiry or otherwise get some first-person perspective into the matter is to roll up my sleeves, pony up the dough and start comparing a bunch M.2 NVMe devices. I'd just appreciate some insight into whether others has done similarly and learn of their views to begin with, but going by your evasive answer it would seem it's a limited field of experience.  

 

My Kingston A2000 M.2 NVMe SSD (500GB) should arrive tomorrow, and I would expect the upcoming weekend to have some first impressions ready. We'll see..

 

Thanks for your insights so far. 

 

There are much better out there cheaper now and Optane is not PCIE 4.0 compliant as some of the newer M.2 drives are.

Current:  JRiver 26 on Win 10 PC (AMD Ryzen 5 2600 with 32 GB RAM) or Daphile on an I5-2500K with 16 GB RAM

DAC - TEAC UD-501 DAC 

Pre-amp - Audio Research SP-16

Amplification - PS Audio S300 - Kenwood L-07M's - Pioneer M-22

Speakers: Royd Doublets - Wharfedale Linton Heritage - KEF LS50 - ELAC unifi UB5's - Linn Tukans - others......

Cables:Tara Labs and DiMarzio Interconnects and Homebrew speaker cables

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40 minutes ago, phusis said:

Why would the Optane be exclusive to these traits?

Two reasons:

 

1) The Optane drives are not made from silicon rather an amorphous material that was invented by the same fellow that invented the Nickel Metal Hydride batteries used in hybrid cars. His name is Stanford R. Ovshinsky.

 

2) Optane drives random write memory speed and latency is faster than anything else out there. Our music players are constantly spitting out data writes in small block sizes that Optane excels at.

 

I recently tested new silicon nvme drives from Samsung and Intel and Optane beats them hands down.

 

Larry

nuckleheadaudio.com

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1 hour ago, lmitche said:

Two reasons:

 

1) The Optane drives are not made from silicon rather an amorphous material that was invented by the same fellow that invented the Nickel Metal Hydride batteries used in hybrid cars. His name is Stanford R. Ovshinsky.

 

2) Optane drives random write memory speed and latency is faster than anything else out there. Our music players are constantly spitting out data writes in small block sizes that Optane excels at.

 

I recently tested new silicon nvme drives from Samsung and Intel and Optane beats them hands down.

 

Larry

 

Problem is you really can't compare since it is a proprietary system, for the Intel Optane. They are smaller and cost WAY more.

 

https://www.pcgamer.com/intel-optane-memory-everything-you-need-to-know/

 

Very informative.

 

AMD's StoreAMI software will do the exact same thing.

 

 

Current:  JRiver 26 on Win 10 PC (AMD Ryzen 5 2600 with 32 GB RAM) or Daphile on an I5-2500K with 16 GB RAM

DAC - TEAC UD-501 DAC 

Pre-amp - Audio Research SP-16

Amplification - PS Audio S300 - Kenwood L-07M's - Pioneer M-22

Speakers: Royd Doublets - Wharfedale Linton Heritage - KEF LS50 - ELAC unifi UB5's - Linn Tukans - others......

Cables:Tara Labs and DiMarzio Interconnects and Homebrew speaker cables

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8 minutes ago, botrytis said:

 

Problem is you really can't compare since it is a proprietary system, for the Intel Optane. They are smaller and cost WAY more.

 

https://www.pcgamer.com/intel-optane-memory-everything-you-need-to-know/

 

Very informative.

 

AMD's StoreAMI software will do the exact same thing.

 

 

The Optane implementations used here and by Taiko Audio do not use the hard disk caching ability of Optane drives. The Optane is only used as an SSD storing OS and metadata files. Indeed over here AMD processors are used with Optane drives. 

 

Intel Caching and AMD StoreAMI are irrelevant functions that would degrade SQ.

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35 minutes ago, lmitche said:

The Optane implementations used here and by Taiko Audio do not use the hard disk caching ability of Optane drives. The Optane is only used as an SSD storing OS and metadata files. Indeed over here AMD processors are used with Optane drives. 

 

Intel Caching and AMD StoreAMI are irrelevant functions that would degrade SQ.

 

Prove it. I don't think so. People keep treating digital music files like they are made of special magic fairy dust. if you have issues with music files, you will have issues with other digital files. Noise affects them also, especially pictures and videos.

Current:  JRiver 26 on Win 10 PC (AMD Ryzen 5 2600 with 32 GB RAM) or Daphile on an I5-2500K with 16 GB RAM

DAC - TEAC UD-501 DAC 

Pre-amp - Audio Research SP-16

Amplification - PS Audio S300 - Kenwood L-07M's - Pioneer M-22

Speakers: Royd Doublets - Wharfedale Linton Heritage - KEF LS50 - ELAC unifi UB5's - Linn Tukans - others......

Cables:Tara Labs and DiMarzio Interconnects and Homebrew speaker cables

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4 minutes ago, botrytis said:

 

Prove it. I don't think so. People keep treating digital files like it is some special magic fairy dust. if you have issues with music files, you will have issues with other files.

Well, sort of. It's not possible to listen to Excel or Word files, so if there are a few pixels missing, who's to know.

 

Digital audio files include parasitic crud from the computer playback system which is free but no one wants. The crud can and does significantly affect sound-stage dimensions most noticeably height, in my system(s) anyway. 

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2 hours ago, botrytis said:

 

Prove it. I don't think so. People keep treating digital music files like they are made of special magic fairy dust. if you have issues with music files, you will have issues with other digital files. Noise affects them also, especially pictures and videos.

Hmmm, who mentioned music files? Not me.

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2 hours ago, One and a half said:

Well, sort of. It's not possible to listen to Excel or Word files, so if there are a few pixels missing, who's to know.

 

Digital audio files include parasitic crud from the computer playback system which is free but no one wants. The crud can and does significantly affect sound-stage dimensions most noticeably height, in my system(s) anyway. 

 

But it is possible to have small corruptions inthem. It is the software that you use that corrects that.

 

Sometimes, audiophiles think everything they do is special. It isn't.

 

I mean streaming videos 4K Atmos for example) and games takes WAY more bandwidth than any music file.

Current:  JRiver 26 on Win 10 PC (AMD Ryzen 5 2600 with 32 GB RAM) or Daphile on an I5-2500K with 16 GB RAM

DAC - TEAC UD-501 DAC 

Pre-amp - Audio Research SP-16

Amplification - PS Audio S300 - Kenwood L-07M's - Pioneer M-22

Speakers: Royd Doublets - Wharfedale Linton Heritage - KEF LS50 - ELAC unifi UB5's - Linn Tukans - others......

Cables:Tara Labs and DiMarzio Interconnects and Homebrew speaker cables

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10 hours ago, lmitche said:

Two reasons:

 

1) The Optane drives are not made from silicon rather an amorphous material that was invented by the same fellow that invented the Nickel Metal Hydride batteries used in hybrid cars. His name is Stanford R. Ovshinsky.

 

2) Optane drives random write memory speed and latency is faster than anything else out there. Our music players are constantly spitting out data writes in small block sizes that Optane excels at.

 

So, "1)" leads to "2)," or how does '1)' have significance in itself from the perspective of sound?

 

Random write memory speeds for the Kingston A2000 is favorably tested:
 

Quote

The performance of this SSD is unprecedented; not in a sense of pure speeds, as there are plenty of PCI-E 3.0 drives that are faster in sequential tests, but in the way that it defies underwhelming sequential speeds to sprint past its rivals in more true-to-life file-transfer tests. We’ve tested plenty of SSDs that wowed in CrystalDiskMark only to crumble in our own tests, but never one that essentially does it the other way around.


https://www.expertreviews.co.uk/kingston/1411219/kingston-a2000-review

 

10 hours ago, lmitche said:

 

I recently tested new silicon nvme drives from Samsung and Intel and Optane beats them hands down.

 

Larry

 

I might add: is that a fact? What's entailed more specifically in "beats them hands down"?

Source: Synology NAS > DIY Mediaserver • Software: JRiver MC26 DLNA/Fidelizer 8.5 Digital output: Audiophilleo 2 + PurePower/RME 9632 • DAC/preamp: Blue Cheese Audio Roquefort Digital cross-over: Xilica XP-3060 • Speakers: Electro-Voice TS940D LX (for active config.)  Subwoofers: 2 x MicroWrecker (tapped horn) • Poweramp EV horns: Belles SA-30 • Subs and EV bass amp: 2 x Crown K2 • Speaker cables: Mundorf silver/gold + Duelund DCA16GA (shotgun config.) • IC: Mundorf silver/gold XLR-RCA/Mogami 2549 XLR-XLR • Subs cable: Cordial CLS 425 • Power cables: 15AWG Solid-core wire w/IeGo pure copper plugs (DIY)

 

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3 hours ago, phusis said:

 

So, "1)" leads to "2)," or how does '1)' have significance in itself from the perspective of sound?

 

Random write memory speeds for the Kingston A2000 is favorably tested:
 


https://www.expertreviews.co.uk/kingston/1411219/kingston-a2000-review

 

 

I might add: is that a fact? What's entailed more specifically in "beats them hands down"?

More transparency, space and a denser image are the result of switching to an Optane drive for the OS and metadata storage for music players. Both generate numerous disk writes during playback.

 

It is the noise (RFI/EMI) generated by the silicon SSDs during write processes that is the problem here, not bit errors.

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22 hours ago, lmitche said:

More transparency, space and a denser image are the result of switching to an Optane drive for the OS and metadata storage for music players. Both generate numerous disk writes during playback.

 

It is the noise (RFI/EMI) generated by the silicon SSDs during write processes that is the problem here, not bit errors.

 

As I quoted from you earlier:

 

Quote

Tuning the OS to play music is all about reducing non-music related activity. Your newly issued optane drive is the fastest drive in the world. Guess what, if your computer spends less time waiting for a Windows log file to write to completion, the more time it has to make music.  You are hearing the benefits of this.  

 

So, in the meantime another sonic influence is brought into the mix (or..?) with:

 

Quote

The Optane drives are not made from silicon rather an amorphous material that was invented by the same fellow that invented the Nickel Metal Hydride batteries used in hybrid cars. His name is Stanford R. Ovshinsky

 

.. meaning this elusive "amorphous material," invented by a guy it's supposedly important to know of, is another or the primary reason for this?:
 

Quote

It is the noise (RFI/EMI) generated by the silicon SSDs during write processes that is the problem here, not bit errors.

 

"Bit errors" (jitter?), certainly as a formulation, was never on my mind in this particular context, but rather what's expressed with noise generated by (higher) power consumption, latency, and random read/write speed (for which there appears to be a range of measuring models, some more "real-world" than others) - maybe this is what you mean by "bit errors" in the first place. In these fields at least reviews indicate other and cheaper alternatives than the Optane's are now comparable. 

 

 

 

@seeteeyou

 

In light of the popular use of the Optane's my aim was/is to hone in on the essential parameters that supposedly accounts for their sonic pedigree, and you'd think these're objective in nature given the Optane's almost unanimous implementation in "reaching for the sky" music servers. If perceived sound quality is predominantly a subjective matter, then why wouldn't more use NVMe devices from Samsung, ADATA, Kingston and others, if there was indeed a larger experimental field to compare them with the Optane's? 

 

And btw.: I'm not "knocking" the Intel optane's. I'm just interested in the reasons for their sonic prowess, and whether someone has investigated into this more thoroughly. It all started out with the possible sonic traits implementing M.2 NVMe SSD's for OS storage, and it turned into "the Optane's." I'm just wondering why..

Source: Synology NAS > DIY Mediaserver • Software: JRiver MC26 DLNA/Fidelizer 8.5 Digital output: Audiophilleo 2 + PurePower/RME 9632 • DAC/preamp: Blue Cheese Audio Roquefort Digital cross-over: Xilica XP-3060 • Speakers: Electro-Voice TS940D LX (for active config.)  Subwoofers: 2 x MicroWrecker (tapped horn) • Poweramp EV horns: Belles SA-30 • Subs and EV bass amp: 2 x Crown K2 • Speaker cables: Mundorf silver/gold + Duelund DCA16GA (shotgun config.) • IC: Mundorf silver/gold XLR-RCA/Mogami 2549 XLR-XLR • Subs cable: Cordial CLS 425 • Power cables: 15AWG Solid-core wire w/IeGo pure copper plugs (DIY)

 

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3 hours ago, phusis said:

And btw.: I'm not "knocking" the Intel optane's. I'm just interested in the reasons for their sonic prowess, and whether someone has investigated into this more thoroughly. It all started out with the possible sonic traits implementing M.2 NVMe SSD's for OS storage, and it turned into "the Optane's." I'm just wondering why..

Hi Phisus,

 

Maybe it's time for you to run the experiment yourself.  32gb Optane drives are available on Amazon for $76 this morning. Please let us know what you observe.

 

Your questions here have been answered in good faith. We are empiricists here, basing our judgements on observations made with our ears. At times we can only conjecture about why something sounds best.

 

We know from benchmarks that Optane storage performs better than other technologies in key areas that impact SQ. If you want more objective measures of why Optane sounds best please take it to the appropriate forum.

 

Good luck with that.

 

Thanks,

 

Larry

 

 

 

nuckleheadaudio.com

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On 9/16/2020 at 2:35 PM, lmitche said:

Hi Phisus,

 

I'll let that one slip.. ;)

 

On 9/16/2020 at 2:35 PM, lmitche said:

 

Maybe it's time for you to run the experiment yourself.  32gb Optane drives are available on Amazon for $76 this morning. Please let us know what you observe.

 

May wait with the Optane for OS duties for now, but one day should try it out (possibly with Audio Linux(?) and not what I use now, Win10 Pro 64-bit).

 

But observe I did in the best empirical fashion I could muster; first impressions are in with the Kingston A2000 as boot device for my Win10, JRiver MC26 (soon MC27) and a few other programs, and compared to the Samsung EVO840 SATA SSD boot drive (120GB) it's a slightly darker, calmer and possibly (subjectively) a bit better resolved sounding as well. Background seems quieter perhaps, but the thing is I find the overall balance to tip just a wee bit too much to a, again, dark-ish sonic imprinting, robbing the sound of some liveliness. It would certainly require a readjustment of the main speaker placement and tweaking some values in my digital cross-over (as is oftentimes needed when new components/software are introduced), but I'm thinking differently right now:

I'm leaning towards staying with the old Samsung boot drive for now, and maybe try out the Kingston M.2 drive as storage device for my music library instead of my build-in Seagate 1.5GB HDD/NAS, and while I'm at it uncouple the SATA-loaded HDD. 

What's the thought on using M.2 NVMe SSD's as music storage? 

 

On 9/16/2020 at 2:35 PM, lmitche said:

 

Your questions here have been answered in good faith. We are empiricists here, basing our judgements on observations made with our ears. At times we can only conjecture about why something sounds best.

 

I posed my questions with good intentions as well, inquisitive they may have seemed. I can certainly understand the complicated nature in giving reasons for why something sounds the way it does.  

/Mikael

Source: Synology NAS > DIY Mediaserver • Software: JRiver MC26 DLNA/Fidelizer 8.5 Digital output: Audiophilleo 2 + PurePower/RME 9632 • DAC/preamp: Blue Cheese Audio Roquefort Digital cross-over: Xilica XP-3060 • Speakers: Electro-Voice TS940D LX (for active config.)  Subwoofers: 2 x MicroWrecker (tapped horn) • Poweramp EV horns: Belles SA-30 • Subs and EV bass amp: 2 x Crown K2 • Speaker cables: Mundorf silver/gold + Duelund DCA16GA (shotgun config.) • IC: Mundorf silver/gold XLR-RCA/Mogami 2549 XLR-XLR • Subs cable: Cordial CLS 425 • Power cables: 15AWG Solid-core wire w/IeGo pure copper plugs (DIY)

 

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On 9/18/2020 at 10:54 AM, phusis said:

What's the thought on using M.2 NVMe SSD's as music storage? 

Hi Mikael,

 

The Intel 660P NVME sticks are successfully used by many for music storage. While they are much noisier than Optane for write intensive OS and player hosting duties, for read-only music playback they sound great. This is likely due to the use of large SLC caches on the drive itself.

 

Larry

nuckleheadaudio.com

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On 9/15/2020 at 1:44 PM, lmitche said:

More transparency, space and a denser image are the result of switching to an Optane drive for the OS and metadata storage for music players. Both generate numerous disk writes during playback.

 

My thoughts on Intel Optane.

 

I was considering trying out Intel Optane. Due to positive test reports regarding short access times, I took a closer look at the Intel® Optane ™ SSD 905P Series. I read the installation guide and was shocked.

 

Complexity of the setting

These are settings in the BIOS and Windows that must be made in a certain sequence. And this several times. It can be done, but I prefer simple solutions.

 

SATA controller

I deactivated the SATA controller in the Audio PC. In the sense of, the fewer controllers are active, the less it can influence the SQ. For Intel Optane, the SATA controller mode "Intel® Optane ™ SSD 905P Series ..." must be activated.

 

Hardware

Not every motherboard and not every CPU supports Intel Optane. The correct M.2 slot must be selected so that Intel Optane is recognized.

 

Target

This is where the system matters. I have implemented a dual PC system for myself. The actual Audio PC has nothing more to do than upsampling with the HQPlayer and rendering the data. The music files are either streamed from Qobuz or come from the NAS. How would Intel Optane benefit me?

 

- A faster system start? For me it is not important whether my system is ready to go in 30 seconds or 60 seconds.


- For the HQPlayer? The M.2 Samsung Evo SSD C drive obviously has little to do. See image.

 

39517245az.png

 

Conclusion

I don't doubt that Intel Optane can bring advantages to Audio PCs that have their music files there. With a dual PC system like mine, it doesn't seem to be important in the Audio PC. Am I making a mistake? Other thoughts are welcome.

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2 hours ago, StreamFidelity said:

 

My thoughts on Intel Optane.

 

I was considering trying out Intel Optane. Due to positive test reports regarding short access times, I took a closer look at the Intel® Optane ™ SSD 905P Series. I read the installation guide and was shocked.

 

Complexity of the setting

These are settings in the BIOS and Windows that must be made in a certain sequence. And this several times. It can be done, but I prefer simple solutions.

 

SATA controller

I deactivated the SATA controller in the Audio PC. In the sense of, the fewer controllers are active, the less it can influence the SQ. For Intel Optane, the SATA controller mode "Intel® Optane ™ SSD 905P Series ..." must be activated.

 

Hardware

Not every motherboard and not every CPU supports Intel Optane. The correct M.2 slot must be selected so that Intel Optane is recognized.

 

Target

This is where the system matters. I have implemented a dual PC system for myself. The actual Audio PC has nothing more to do than upsampling with the HQPlayer and rendering the data. The music files are either streamed from Qobuz or come from the NAS. How would Intel Optane benefit me?

 

- A faster system start? For me it is not important whether my system is ready to go in 30 seconds or 60 seconds.


- For the HQPlayer? The M.2 Samsung Evo SSD C drive obviously has little to do. See image.

 

39517245az.png

 

Conclusion

I don't doubt that Intel Optane can bring advantages to Audio PCs that have their music files there. With a dual PC system like mine, it doesn't seem to be important in the Audio PC. Am I making a mistake? Other thoughts are welcome.

StreamFidelity,

 

What is the point of posting a picture of task manager showing a Samsung drive in a thread about Optane drives? Is the D: drive above an Optane drive? If so, you have made a mistake.

 

The point of the Optane drive is to use it as a straight SSD (not a cache for a hard disk). In WIndows terms use it as the C: drive.   There is no need for bios adjustments, or driver installations. In SSD mode it works in any NVME slot on all Intel and AMD motherboards tried here. Just make it your boot drive for the OS and run the music playback app from the same drive. While it can hold music files, it is best to use another drive for music files to separate the traffic and data paths. 

 

 

nuckleheadaudio.com

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35 minutes ago, lmitche said:

What is the point of posting a picture of task manager showing a Samsung drive in a thread about Optane drives?

 

1. I meant, "I've thought about it ..." In fact, I've never tried it.

2. This is a thread about "M.2 NVMe SSD for OS" That with Optane came up in the discussion and I gave my thoughts on it.

 

35 minutes ago, lmitche said:

The point of the Optane drive is to use it as a straight SSD (not a cache for a hard disk).

 

My speech! Since my music files are outside of the audio PC (either in the www at Qobuz or on my NAS) Optane couldn't help me. The task manager should show that in my system data on SSDs is barely read or written. Instead, what HQPlayer need is already in RAM. Optane cannot be any faster. 😉

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46 minutes ago, StreamFidelity said:

 

1. I meant, "I've thought about it ..." In fact, I've never tried it.

2. This is a thread about "M.2 NVMe SSD for OS" That with Optane came up in the discussion and I gave my thoughts on it.

 

 

My speech! Since my music files are outside of the audio PC (either in the www at Qobuz or on my NAS) Optane couldn't help me. The task manager should show that in my system data on SSDs is barely read or written. Instead, what HQPlayer need is already in RAM. Optane cannot be any faster. 😉

OK, so you seem to have answered your own questions about the Optane drive without trying one.  I don't know what more I can do to help you.

 

Good luck,

 

Larry

nuckleheadaudio.com

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