Jump to content

Piecing together a music server


Recommended Posts

Hi Chris >>> Fantastic website >>> kudos!


I have last month ventured into high-fidelity audio and have in place CA 650A, Mordaunt Short Aviano 8 which at present i am feeding with Dell XPS M1210 (win xp) laptop throuhg 3.5 mm jack. Also have a seagate 500Gg external hard disk that connects via USB 2.0. I know that source is not even discussion worthy. But i wanted to wait and understand how to build a music server before I invested in it. As for, CA 650A >>> it delivers neutral sonic and that is what i was aiming to get. I auditioned at length Monitor BX/ RX 5 and Mezzo 6 and had almost settled for Mezzo 6 but then i heard Aviano 8 >>> the versatality of Aviano 8 is something to only hear and understand >>> it may not match the high notes of Mezzo 6 but the bass in Mezzo 6 kept falling apart >>> aviano 8 were on tab always throughout >>> Happy with amp and speakers for now >>> will upgrade in a couple of years to higher stuff once i develop a keen ear for them :)


Now, to my imperatives for the next addition to my high-fidelity setup >>> this is an addiction totally :)


a. No compromise on sound quality -- want 24/192 feed capability

b. Want a source that caters to future -- so cd player is not good enough, as it is tough to organize music on it -- hence SDD/ HDD dependent source is a must

c. dont want to burn a huge hole in the pocket but will still not compromise on parameters set above


What i have researched so far:


1. J River MC as software is better than itunes because of ASIO/ WASAPI, etc. J River MC has better interface than Foobar. J River MC enables streaming which matches up to itunes.


2. EAC as CD ripper is good so that settles the CD ripper issue.


3. DAC -- DAC magic is available in India easily and seems to be a good enough starting point -- although i keep reading stuff about weiss, berkeley, etc. but cant easily get them set up -- will dac magic do for now?


4. A difficult area to tide over is the connection between laptop to DAC -- read that jriver with airfoil (which now seems to be not being renewed) and airport express will work -- galaxy tab may serve as a remote for the system -- this will be very low on cost for me -- but i dont like the limitation of 16/44khz


compare AE with squeezebox touch, which has been reviewed seems brings us to 24/96 but some doubt the squeezebox for audio purity ... plus i am not convinced about squeezecenter software and will have to run jriver somehow -- plus for this more expense needs to be done -- but if extra has to be spent that i dont want to be limited to 24/96 and want to have the ability to go upto 24/192.


also, my laptop dell xps m1210 with win xp has a spdif and a dell converter which converts spdif into spdif, composite video (yellow), digital audio (black). i have not tested this, but what will be the bitrate and experience if i connect this straight into a dac. i can put a router (may be AE) to set up galaxy tab as a remote for the set-up.


i have been raking my brains and reading stuff now for last one week and i am not convinced which way to proceed -- so i call for help and suggestions !!!





______________________[br]Cambridge audio 650A, Mordaunt short Aviano 8, Dell XPS M1210, Samsung Galaxy Tab

Link to comment



I like EAC too, but I insisted on having embedded album art for all of the music in my library. When I was using EAC, this left me spending hours with a flatbed scanner to get the CD covers scanned in. I eventually abandoned EAC for dbPoweramp, which for my collection was able to find usable cover art about 95% of the time.


The default settings for dbPoweramp are not great, but after you enable "secure RIP", the results for CDs that are not in the AccurateRIP database are just as good as EAC in my experience.


As for a DAC, obviously the Weiss Engineering DAC202 is not a bad way to go if it fits your budget. Other suggestions are on the C.A.S.H. list. At the top of my short list is the W4S DAC-2, but please don't buy that until after I get my order in. I don't want a bunch of people in front of me on the wait list! :-)


-- David





Link to comment

The rDAC is (at least technically) superior to the DACMagic as it uses asynchronous USB technology.






...in my opinion / experience...

While I agree "Everything may matter" working out what actually affects the sound is a trickier thing.

And I agree "Trust your ears" but equally don't allow them to fool you - trust them with a bit of skepticism.

keep your mind open... But mind your brain doesn't fall out.

Link to comment

Thanks David, Eloise


But i dont intend to spend as much required for Weiss DACs at present ... will like to keep it upto around US$ 500 and so choices, as i understand remain between DACmagic, Arcam rDac, etc. Has anyone tested the sonic output on A and B with these DACs to understand the differences.


Also, out the above-listed connection options between laptop and DAC, which one should be ideal. Any thoughts will help for me to move forward with my next tranche of piecing the hi-fi setup together.




______________________[br]Cambridge audio 650A, Mordaunt short Aviano 8, Dell XPS M1210, Samsung Galaxy Tab

Link to comment



I have no experience with the DACmagic or rDac yet. I did have an opportunity to listen to a friend's Emotiva XDA-1 this weekend though, and in this price range, I would say for sure that it's worth consideration. We found that the USB input is not usable for 24-bit, 176.4 kHz playback (at least), so if you go this route, you'd want to mate the XDA-1 with something like the M2Tech hiFace USB to S/PDIF adapter (low jitter clocks, kernel streaming driver for Windows, and reliable support for all standard formats from 44.1/48kHz through 176.4/192kHz).


-- David





Link to comment

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Create New...