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exaSound E68 Stereo DSD512 and 8-Channel DSD256 DAC


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19 minutes ago, jrobbins50 said:

Perhaps asking the obvious, but I assume that all volume control is DSP in Roon when using the straight from Coleman to amps approach?

You can do this in Roon and, while I have fooled around with it, it is not my standard operating arrangement so I cannot send you a screen shot.

Kal Rubinson

Senior Contributing Editor, Stereophile

 

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25 minutes ago, jrobbins50 said:

@Kal Rubinson and @Steve Bruzonsky, I have a Coleman 7.1sw on the way along with a boatload of ProAudioLA DB25 cables.  For two channel sources, I have been using bass management crossovers in the Marantz AV-8802A but running those Marantz inputs on Pure Direct.  Going forward, do I need to set up the bass management in Roon if I am bypassing the Marantz entirely?  Could one of you share a screenshot of how you have it set up?

 

For the Okto dac8pro MCH, I've used the bass management functionality within Audiolense when creating convolution filters for Roon/HQP use.  Should I be able to do the same going forward bypassing the Marantz, as the Marantz MCH inputs are the 7.1 analog ones that don't apply any bass management to begin with?

 

Perhaps asking the obvious, but I assume that all volume control is DSP in Roon when using the straight from Coleman to amps approach?

 

Thanks for the guidance.  Cheers.  JCR

 

In my family room system, I am not doing bass management per se on the music s88 side - I use the s88 online menu to control speaker and subwoofer volume (and individual subwoofer volume controls as well), and ROON to control speaker distances. My Marantz SSP is all separate for video only  using its Audyssey for room correction, etc - but the Marantz using ROON via Airplay doesn't compare sonically to my s88 music setup.

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That should be fun to hear the result, @Kal Rubinson.  I suspect we read about this experiment in a far distant Stereophile issue. :)

 

I actually have a RooDial working in my main system. It really does enable DSP Roon volume control on a Microsoft Surface Dial. I hope that will work well for the 7.1sw arrangement.


Got it that I’m on my own as to bass management in Roon. 

 

Kal, you’ve got both the S88 and the Okto? How would you describe the sonic differences?  JCR 

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On 5/27/2021 at 8:58 AM, ted_b said:

Yes, the 7.1SW uses DB25 connectors; their a/b5.1 (which I own, bought on Ebay for $99) uses 1/4" TRS.   I like the a/b5.1 for two reasons: 1) I only have 6 channels to switch, and 2) the individual 1/4" TRS connectors allow me to use different lengths for each channel, as my rear surrounds require a 40 ft run (through in-wall smurf tubes) while the fronts only need a fraction of that.   Maybe Redco or Pro Audio LA could customize a db25 snake with different lengths too, I do not know.

 

Would the 1/4" TRS connectors on the a/b5.1 also make it easier to incorporate an input from an unbalanced source (such as an AVR's preamp outputs), or is it pretty much impossible/impractical to use an unbalance source with either of these switchers?

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5 hours ago, ClassicalDJ said:

 

Would the 1/4" TRS connectors on the a/b5.1 also make it easier to incorporate an input from an unbalanced source (such as an AVR's preamp outputs), or is it pretty much impossible/impractical to use an unbalance source with either of these switchers?

These two are not really suitable for unbalanced lines.  Look online for a used Zektor switch.

Kal Rubinson

Senior Contributing Editor, Stereophile

 

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52 minutes ago, ted_b said:

I have a Zektor switch (used ) that I've never unboxed.  PM me.

Good.  I have one that I am keeping.........................................just in case.

Kal Rubinson

Senior Contributing Editor, Stereophile

 

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I may experiment with bass management in ROON at some point - right now I'm enjoying my system as is as I have it where I want it component and setup wise - again, may experiment in ROOM with its bass management etc features at some point when I recover from my current state of inherent laziness. So you can educate me hopefully. HA!

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Speaker distance.

 

Is it critical to make sure the front Left, Center and Right speakers are the same distance to the MLP?  I've always used Audyssey before and assumed it took care of speaker distances (timing).  But, now, feeding my Marantz AV8805 analog in (7.1 channel in) from the S88 it occurred to me that my pre/pro is no longer adjusting timing.

 

What does everyone else do?  Just measure and make sure all three speakers are equidistant from the MLP?

 

Thanks!

 

Marcus

 

 

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2 hours ago, Desertpilot said:

What does everyone else do?  Just measure and make sure all three speakers are equidistant from the MLP?

If they are not all at the exact same distances (or if you are also using surround speakers which are generally not), you can set the distances in Roon or Jriver.

Kal Rubinson

Senior Contributing Editor, Stereophile

 

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22 hours ago, Kal Rubinson said:

If they are not all at the exact same distances (or if you are also using surround speakers which are generally not), you can set the distances in Roon or Jriver.

Thank you Kal.  I set the distances in JRiver.  Sounds much better now, especially piano.

 

Marcus

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  • 2 weeks later...

Update:  As you know, I wanted to set distance settings from speakers to MLP while using the S88.  I use JRiver and tried their room correction in DSP Studio.  I discovered it works for PCM files but not for DSD files.  A couple days ago, I began a 14 day trial of ROON.  The program does allow setting speaker distances (and, as needed, volume equalizing between speakers) for both PCM and DSD files.  Adding ROON's DSP processing (for speaker distance) slowed down my computer (core i7 windows 10).  I checked ROON's processing speed in the program's signal path window and it was very slow.  ROON's message boards provided lots of tips to improve processing speed which worked.  Processing speed, even with DSP engaged, is excellent now.  No more interruptions.

 

Lastly, I successfully migrated all JRiver tags to ROON.  As an aside, I made some tag changes in JRiver and they immediately updated in ROON.  My current plan is to keep both players.  I need JRiver for tagging music files (easy) and playing movies.  ROON's DSP does offer a lot more capability, but for now, speaker distance and volume control is sufficient.

 

My integration of the S88 in to my system is now complete.

 

Marcus

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3 hours ago, Desertpilot said:

Update:  As you know, I wanted to set distance settings from speakers to MLP while using the S88.  I use JRiver and tried their room correction in DSP Studio.  I discovered it works for PCM files but not for DSD files. 

True.

 

3 hours ago, Desertpilot said:

The program does allow setting speaker distances (and, as needed, volume equalizing between speakers) for both PCM and DSD files. 

Not so purely as you may think. 9_9

 

3 hours ago, Desertpilot said:

ROON's message boards provided lots of tips to improve processing speed which worked. 

Those changes may give you an insight into what Roon is really doing with DSD.

Kal Rubinson

Senior Contributing Editor, Stereophile

 

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Kal, you are most likely correct.  The whole point of purchasing the S88 was to get a pure DSD file through my system, expertly converted to analog, and out to my speakers.  After writing my above post, I also discovered that ROON somehow eliminated my JRiver WDM driver.  I need that driver to play browser based Primephonic (classical) and Amazon HD Music (jazz) tracks through the S88.  I uninstalled ROON, reconfigured JRiver with WDM, rebooted and WDM is back and working.  I really like sampling music through these streaming services.

 

Gesh!  Looks like I will stick with JRiver.  I super appreciate your posts.  They are keeping me on track.  I'm 70 and trying to get the best possible musical experience before my hearing goes bad (LOL).

 

Thanks again!  Marcus

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51 minutes ago, Desertpilot said:

Gesh!  Looks like I will stick with JRiver.  I super appreciate your posts.  They are keeping me on track.  I'm 70 and trying to get the best possible musical experience before my hearing goes bad (LOL).

While I still use both, Jriver is my daily-driver.   I've got some years on you so I know where you are heading. 9_9

Kal Rubinson

Senior Contributing Editor, Stereophile

 

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I want to pass along how I stream music through the S88.  I use Amazon Music HD (for Jazz) and Primephonic (for classical) on my Windows 10 PC.  I did not have any luck with either service's apps.  George at exaSound told me to try JRiver's WDM feature.  I do not know if ROON offers a similar feature.  Once I installed the WDM feature and brought up Amazon's Windows app or Primphonic's web based browser app, I could stream music from either source through the S88 (I looked at the S88 VU meters and yep, the S88 was getting the signal from JRiver).

 

My PC is in a different room.  I tried the windows' remote desktop. Total failure.  I then installed and used Google's remote desktop.  Success (a bit clunky but success selecting streaming music remotely).  At the MLP, on my Android Pad, I use JRemote2 to play stored music from my NAS and now using Google remote desktop, streaming music.  I also use the Marantz app to control volume.

 

I hope you find this useful.

 

Marcus

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Hi Ted, thanks for asking.  I can't answer your question as I am very novice in this area.  I got the S88 working with my system via USB and that was my first priority.  I wanted a multichannel DAC.  I have not utilized the LAN capability because I don't know how yet.  Is there a better way to use the S88?

 

My objectives:

1.  Play my NAS stored music to my listening area.  I thought the only way to do that was via USB using JRiver from my PC.

2.  Play either Amazon or Primephonic streaming to my listening area.

3.  Play all of the above via S88 (lan????) to other devices (I have a separate receiver in my "man cave").  I do not know how to do this and have not really tried yet.

 

Any help you can offer would be appreciated.

 

Marcus

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55 minutes ago, Desertpilot said:

Hi Ted, thanks for asking.  I can't answer your question as I am very novice in this area.  I got the S88 working with my system via USB and that was my first priority.  I wanted a multichannel DAC.  I have not utilized the LAN capability because I don't know how yet.  Is there a better way to use the S88?

 

My objectives:

1.  Play my NAS stored music to my listening area.  I thought the only way to do that was via USB using JRiver from my PC.

2.  Play either Amazon or Primephonic streaming to my listening area.

3.  Play all of the above via S88 (lan????) to other devices (I have a separate receiver in my "man cave").  I do not know how to do this and have not really tried yet.

 

Any help you can offer would be appreciated.

 

Marcus

 

You can use a separate computer as your ROON Core. I use an Exasound Delta as my ROON Core, connected via ethernet to my network. I use a Western  Digital MyCloudPR4100 32TB with all of my music, also connected via ethernet to my network. And my s88 DAC also connected via ethernet to my network. My Delta and MyCloud in in a totally separate room from my family room with the s88 system! I have hardwired ethernet as well as superfast wi-fi throughout my home. So I do not use USB at all, though I could of course connect USB by placing the Delta near the s88. Back a few years when I didn't have a ROON Ready SSP in my theater (changed from Theta Casablanca IVA SSP using Berkely USB to digital converter from Sonore Signature Rendu SE outputting USB for stereo, and a custom PC with HDMI card for multi-channel via HDMI) (moved to Trinnov Altitude 32 SSP which is ROON Ready via ethernet for both stereo and multi-channel), USB only did stereo, not multi-channel, and I don't think this changed - or has it?

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By the way, I finally hooked up trigger cables from s88 to each of my five PS Audio monoblocks in sequence. The s88 settings menu allows you to set how many minutes the DAC turns essentially to standby so it does not output a 12v trigger signal. So now I leave the s88 in standby, I never touch the s88, and when I start playing music via ROON, the s88 front display comes on out of standby and its 12v signal goes out and turns on all of my monoblocks. And when ROON stops playing, the s88 front display turns off and it goes into standby with no 12v trigger signal and the monoblocks turn off. Actually, each monoblock has a switch on back I have turned to on, its the front standby switch that goes on and off via the 12v trigger signal. NIFTY!!!

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47 minutes ago, Steve Bruzonsky said:

 

You can use a separate computer as your ROON Core.

 

I have a laptop I can use to install ROON core.

 

48 minutes ago, Steve Bruzonsky said:

 

... USB only did stereo, not multi-channel, and I don't think this changed - or has it?

 

From my main PC via USB to the S88 I am getting full multichannel DSD & PCM.

 

To utilize the LAN capability of the S88:

 

If I read you (and the owners' manual correctly), I switch the S88 to LAN (connected via ethernet cable).  I feed it my music using ROON on my laptop (also connected via ethernet cable).  My problem is getting the S88 output via LAN to my garage receiver.  When I select network on the receiver, it sees the S88 but won't play anything.  I can also select my main PC (it says DLNA) and album cover art shows up on the receiver but no music.  So, I don't know what I am doing.  I just have not spent a lot of time with this as I was much more focused on getting superb music through my main system (which is happening).  I probably need some software or something.

 

Thanks for trying to help.  Marcus

 

 

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12 hours ago, Desertpilot said:

My problem is getting the S88 output via LAN to my garage receiver. 

That only works if the s88 is the Roon core.  To send it there, use Roon on the laptop with the garage receiver as an additional zone.  No need for the s88 to be involved.

 

Kal Rubinson

Senior Contributing Editor, Stereophile

 

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Your garage receiver has to be ROON Ready via Airplay to use ROON with it. To use JRiver with it as receivers are not JRiver Ready it gets more complicated. When I had my non-ROON Ready Theta Casablanca IVA SSP, I used a custom built computer with a USB SOTM card, USB into a Berkley USB to digital converter, digital to Theta Casablanca IVA SSP.  

 

It may be some newer receivers may be ROON Ready via Airplay, as I haven't kept up on this. 

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