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Mac Software Recommendations other than Audirvana+


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BOTTOM LINE UP FRONT - I'm seeking recommendations for software to use on my systems

 

SYSTEMS:
OFFICE: 2018 13" MacBook Pro, 1TB SSD, 16GB RAM, MACOS 11.4; DAC Dragonfly Red; Earbuds - Etymotic E4R; Headphones - Sennheiser 280 Pro; Software - Apple Music, A+
HOME OFFICE: 2011 MacMini, 1TB HDD, 16GB RAM, MACOS 10.15.7; Speakers - Audioengine 2+ w/integrated 16bit 44.1/48 DAC; Software - Apple Music, A+
HOME STEREO: 2010 13" MacBook Pro, 1TB SSD, 16GB RAM, MACOS 10.13.6; NAD 106 Preamp, NAD 208 Amp, Linn LP-12, Realistic Optimus speakers
MOBILE: iPhone 10 Max; DAC Dragonfly Red; Earbuds - Etymotic E4R; Software - Apple Music, Onkyo HF Player, A+ Remote

 

PROBLEM DISCUSSION:
I've been entirely satisfied running Audirvana+ (now 3.5+) for over four years. However, Audirvana announced it's new subscription licensing policy to move to the upgraded version. Add this to the plethora of now licensed software (Office 365, Adobe Products, etc.) and it soon becomes too expensive to license, rather than own software, albeit at an initial higher cost.

 

Easiest course of action is to remain at A+ and migrate it to my home system as well. However, if A+ becomes untenable, what other options are considerations given my humble systems?

 

Thanks for your considerations.

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Come back here and ask again when Audirvana 3.5 will stop working, it will surely work longer then you have it already, or stay with 10.15.7 and have it forever…

If You Got Ears, You Gotta ListenCaptain Beefheart

 

MacMini, i5, 2.5GHz, SSD, 16Gb, 10.15.7 > Audirvana Studio 1.2 > Wyred DAC2 DSD Special Edition >
Proceed AMP2 > Focal Cobalt 826 Signature Series > Audirvana Remote > iPhone 11

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Thanks for the comments. The MacMini and 2008 MacBook Pro can't update past their current configurations, so worst case, you are right, stick with Audirvana 3.5 and remain happy.

 

That being said, since I'm looking around, are there other viable software solutions?

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either follow @RunHomeSlow or … since you use Apple Music, try PureMusic or JRiver.

For local files without Apple Music integration: Signalyst HQPlayer.

“Bitperfect“ is another option but seems pretty inactive, outdated (?).

„Fidelia“ is nice but oldschool.

“Amarra“ is really a No Go (super buggy and amateurish).

 

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If I didn't want to upsample in software or use AU plugins (the reasons I use Audirvana), I would use Swinsian.

 

Bill

Labels assigned by CA members: "Cogley's ML sock-puppet," "weaponizer of psychology," "ethically-challenged," "professionally dubious," "machismo," "lover of old westerns," "shill," "expert on ducks and imposters," "Janitor in Chief," "expert in Karate," "ML fanboi or employee," "Alabama Trump supporter with an NRA decal on the windshield of his car," sycophant

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5 hours ago, copy_of_a said:

Amarra“ is really a No Go (super buggy and amateurish).

Amarra has bugs in the library, but it has the best sound out of the above.

MacMini 2018 - Lynx Hilo LT-TB (TeddyPardo PSU) - Unison Research SH - Sennheiser HD800

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I think I've used every mac player available. Starting from yet free Audivana and all and every its consequent incarnations, Fidelia, Cog, Vox, Pine and so on. Used Amarra Symphony for several years, paid crazy amounts of money for all its updates and add-ons and was happy to switch to HQ Player which was my player to go for 10 years or so. My advice -- if you don't have to use a library and would use drag and drop as I do, try Foobar2000 for mac. Despite the spartan look, there are some nice features, like UPnP and some others. Great sound. Free, and obviously will remain so. The mac version doesn't have all the extra plugins as the Windows version, but it's good enough for me. Stopped using sophisticated HQ Player, because I do not have NAA anymore and I can live without upsampling. 

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57 minutes ago, AnotherSpin said:

I think I've used every mac player available. Starting from yet free Audivana and all and every its consequent incarnations, Fidelia, Cog, Vox, Pine and so on. Used Amarra Symphony for several years, paid crazy amounts of money for all its updates and add-ons and was happy to switch to HQ Player which was my player to go for 10 years or so. My advice -- if you don't have to use a library and would use drag and drop as I do, try Foobar2000 for mac. Despite the spartan look, there are some nice features, like UPnP and some others. Great sound. Free, and obviously will remain so. The mac version doesn't have all the extra plugins as the Windows version, but it's good enough for me. Stopped using sophisticated HQ Player, because I do not have NAA anymore and I can live without upsampling. 

 

Which Mac player do you use for listening to Qobuz?

Thanks

 

Matt

"I want to know why the musicians are on stage, not where". (John Farlowe)

 

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2 hours ago, matthias said:

 

Which Mac player do you use for listening to Qobuz?

Thanks

 

Matt

 

I do not use any app in mac for Qobuz. It streams directly to Naim streaming platform operated with Naim app in iphone. I have standard Qobuz player in mac, which also could be used, but it is not needed in current setup.

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Thanks all for your recommendations and comments. 

 

Collectively, you've driven me to consider why I use Audirvana+. An important reason is that it isn't iTunes/Music and although I am a "Mac guy," I'm not wedded to everything in the MacOS ecosphere. 

 

Second is my understanding is that Audirvana+ offers by way of upsampling the best opportunity to improve sound quality for the low bit-depth and -rate media (AIFF and AAC) that I hold by way of up sampling, although I have a few high-resolution albums. 

 

Playback is an issue of course as well. There is a discernable and pleasant improvement in sound quality when using the Audioquest Dragonfly Red DAC with either my headphones or Earbuds. Significantly this system is very transportable (OFFICE SYSTEM and MOBILE SYSTEM) and at a reasonable price-point.

 

I'll assume the DAC in my Audioengine A2 speakers is providing a sound improvement as well and I've found it "good enough" for the moment.

 

The HOME STEREO won't be improved as it is "good enough" for my wife's use and any other additions would add more unwanted technology for her consideration.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Does anyone have direct knowledge, personal experience, feedback using iTunes or Apple Music (lossless files) with the recently updated Bitperfect v3.2.0? Audirvana has database metadata/tag issues that I can't seem to resolve. 

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Foobar2000 for mac works well for me. No bullshit software, good sound. Even though developer focused on Windows version, mac's version updates regularly. I do not know anything better than this for free.

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