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Synology NAS DacMagic


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Hi All,

 

My question is regarding my DacMagic. Is it possible to output high quality 24bit audio (like Flac files) from this DacMagic when it's connected via USB on a Synology Nas? (IE the DS212) Or do I really need a device like a cambridge audio NP30 to realize this?

 

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I'm aware of that. But my question is, can a USB SPDIF converter output 24bit from a Synology Nas? My DacMagic supports 192/24bit with no problems on the optical port, but that's the situation on the other side of the USB converter.

 

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Have you considered using a Squeezebox Touch rather than direct from your Synology NAS? I believe you can run the Squeezebox Server on the Synology.

 

Eloise

 

Eloise

---

...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.

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I'm afraid I don't understand your question. Do you have a player of some sort on your NAS that you're controlling from elsewhere? Are you asking if your NAS can send a 24bit signal to its own usb output?

 

Usually, if not always, as I understand it, one streams the data from one's NAS to either a device (like the Squeezebox) or a computer and uses the USB output from there. But I could be missing something.

 

-Chris

 

 

 

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rudolffischer ,

 

Thanks, that's a good alternative. The NAS isn't ordered yet, but when its operational I'll try first with the Cambridge Audio DacMagic connected via USB directly on the NAS, acting as a soundcard. I'm questioning myself how big the improvement will be when adding a squeezebox between the Synology Nas and the DacMagic according to my setup, compared to the situation without a squeezebox.

 

My setup contains:

DacMagic

NAD C320BEE

Monitor Audio BX2 speakers.

 

What do you think rudolffischer ?

 

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Hi feekh

I doubt you will hear any difference between streaming directly from audiostation and through a squeezebox using your setup. The differences I hear in my setup when changing DACs are quite subtle and sometimes difficult to identify.

Some thoughts:

I have yet to find truly silent NAS. My NAS sits in another room and is connected through ethernet. Putting the NAS in another room will necessitate the use of a dedicated player such as a squeezebox (works wireless as well, but better sound through ethernet).

It seems to me your system is quite balanced with regard to the quality of the components. Moving up a level with just one component (i.e. DAC) and leaving everything else the same may not bring the benefits you are hoping for.

A comparatively cost effective move to higher quality could be a DAC with built in headphone amp and a good pair of headphones.

Regards

Rudi

 

 

 

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As noted by Chris in his review of a Synology product, the USB output is limited to 16 bit/ 44.1 or 48kHz playback. A similar limitation can be noted looking at the specs for the Synology Remote product.

 

I found a thread on the Synology forums that report the DacMagic and even the HRT Music Streamer II have worked when connected directly to a Synology NAS. Assuming you are OK with the 16bit/44.1(48) limitation, this could work out favorably for you. The DAC compatibility seems to be hit or miss- someone reported the Arcam rDac did not work when directly connected, so I am not sure what causes some DACs to work and others not to.

 

Are you looking to have the NAS located in the same room, right next to your system, or are you looking to have it in another room and stream to the system from there? If the latter, then all you need is a "front end" device to be able to browse and play the music...for example, you can take a laptop computer, set it up to browse the music library on the Synology, then connect it via a USB converter to the DacMagic. Otherwise, you could use a Squeezebox like the others have suggested already. Sounds to me like you just need a "front end" device that takes on the responsibility of accessing your media library that is being hosted by the Synology.

 

Good luck with your search!

 

 

Office: iPod classic/iPad -> Shure SE425 IEM Home: Oppo BDP-83/Synology DS211j -> Integra DTR-7.8 -> Revel speakers

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Remember the Dacmagic is limited to 48K/16bit on its USB input, 96/24 on the others. Not 192/24 as previously stated. If it plays 192 files, which I doubt, but have not tried, it will be downsampling to 96K.

 

That is why many use a USB to SP/DIF converter with it, some giving all of asynch, galvanic isolation, and 96/24 benefits. But still no 192 with a Dacmagic.

 

The new Dacmagic Plus is advertised at all inputs being 192/24.

 

Re playing from a NAS, my Seagates have a UPNP-AV function built in, which shows on my network, and will play a music file via the PC without invoking a player. But it won't play an 'album', only a single file, as it does not have the concept of an 'album'. But I have never got it to work by connecting a DAC directly to the NAS, even though it has a USB output. I think the USB output is for a printer, thus allowing sharing.

 

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But I have never got it to work by connecting a DAC directly to the NAS, even though it has a USB output. I think the USB output is for a printer, thus allowing sharing.

 

Well the NAS products from Synology do support USB audio interfaces, so that won't be a problem.

 

Assuming you are OK with the 16bit/44.1(48) limitation, this could work out favorably for you. The DAC compatibility seems to be hit or miss- someone reported the Arcam rDac did not work when directly connected, so I am not sure what causes some DACs to work and others not to.

 

Well I've read success stories regarding the Synology 211 / 212 NAS'es in combination with the DacMagic, so that's promising.

 

Are you looking to have the NAS located in the same room, right next to your system, or are you looking to have it in another room and stream to the system from there? If the latter, then all you need is a "front end" device to be able to browse and play the music...for example, you can take a laptop computer, set it up to browse the music library on the Synology, then connect it via a USB converter to the DacMagic. Otherwise, you could use a Squeezebox like the others have suggested already. Sounds to me like you just need a "front end" device that takes on the responsibility of accessing your media library that is being hosted by the Synology.

 

Well the main goal is to get a NAS, and connect it to my DacMagic, plus having a decent iPhone app to control the music. I've read good reviews about the DS audio remote app for the iPhone to control the Synology DiskStation audio (http://www.synology.com/us/solutions/mobile/ds_audio.php), since the DacMagic is an upsampling DAC, the sound quality don't have to be that bad with the limit of 16bit audio coming from the Synology NAS, what do you think?

 

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Well the main goal is to get a NAS, and connect it to my DacMagic, plus having a decent iPhone app to control the music. I've read good reviews about the DS audio remote app for the iPhone to control the Synology DiskStation audio (http://www.synology.com/us/solutions/mobile/ds_audio.php), since the DacMagic is an upsampling DAC, the sound quality don't have to be that bad with the limit of 16bit audio coming from the Synology NAS, what do you think?

 

I think this would work just fine for your needs. I have experimented just briefly with the AudioStation app and it works nicely with an iPad that a friend had available to try out. It has the capability to do streaming or the rendering mode, but the streaming mode (if you wanted to listen through your iPhone) I think is limited to mp3/m4a files.

 

Your original question mentioned 24 bit FLAC files, so I wanted to just emphasize the point that the Synology will "downgrade" it to 16 bit through the USB output (see this forum post ). So your music may not be bit-perfect if above 16 bit, but it should still sound fine.

 

On the original DacMagic, I remember some reviews saying the coaxial/optical inputs sounded better than the USB (I have no direct hands-on with the product to confirm this) so if you wanted to experiment further you could try a USB-to-SPDIF converter if it is compatible with the Synology to try that other input on the DacMagic.

 

Either way it sounds like this setup will work! If you start getting into 24/96 and higher downloads, then that might be when you start looking into a front end streaming player that can pick up those files from the Synology and feed them to your DacMagic.

 

 

 

Office: iPod classic/iPad -> Shure SE425 IEM Home: Oppo BDP-83/Synology DS211j -> Integra DTR-7.8 -> Revel speakers

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I added a Musical Fidelity V-Link USB to S/PDIF converter to my Dacmagic so I can use either the Dacmagic optical or coax inputs (I prefer the optical), and of course works at max 96K rather than max 48. Sounds much better, well worth the money. There is now a V-Link II, in a silver case, which is actually the one I have.

 

Wish I had looked at the Synology before I bought the Seagate.

 

Regards

 

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With the Synology Media Server Application you have the ability to chose different client profiles and one of them is "Playstation 3". So it looks like the PS3 should be able to act as a DLNA client and pull music from the Synology.

I don't know about your PS3, but the fans of the one I had for a while were noisy as hell. No problem with loud rock, but for everything else ...

Nice thing about the Squeezebox I use is that it is silent, cheap, easy to use, 24bit/96khz SPDIF out.

 

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rudolffischer,

 

My PS3 is really quiet, it's the slim version which is a lot quieter than the original one. I'm sure the PS3 outputs 24/96 too, but my question is; can the Synology NAS provide the PS3 a 24/96 signal over DLNA?

 

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My PS3 is really quiet, it's the slim version which is a lot quieter than the original one. I'm sure the PS3 outputs 24/96 too, but my question is; can the Synology NAS provide the PS3 a 24/96 signal over DLNA?

 

It sure can. Check out the DLNA/UPnP Media Server specs under the Applications subheading on the DS212 page. However, the problem from there is if the PS3 can decode FLAC. Quick Google search seems to confirm the PS3 can't decode FLAC, it needs software like PS3MediaServer on a PC to transcode it.

 

Synology NAS products have a transcoding feature where they can convert FLAC to either WAV or PCM, both types supported by the PS3 (see this link). This transcoding feature is very processor intensive, so it is recommended by Synology to get as powerful of a model as you can. I'm sure you could follow up with Synology to confirm that transcoding FLAC to WAV/PCM will preserve the file as 24/96.

 

This is where DLNA/network streaming gets messy- most of the time the server (Synology) is not the problem, all it has to do is make the files available to clients (PS3, Squeezebox). The problem is what file types and formats the clients can decode, because if they can't decode it then the responsibility falls on the server to present it in a readable format. I think the Synology transcoding FLAC to WAV/PCM should work for transmitting to the PS3, but again I would maybe shoot a message to Synology support to ask.

 

If I can make a (somewhat) OT suggestion- my Oppo player does not support FLAC, but I found a way to play my 24/96 downloads on it. There is an open source program called lpex that can create DVD discs with audio tracks (in FLAC or WAV format) up to 24 bit/96kHz resolution. It takes the files and creates a .iso file you burn to disc using ImgBurn (also free). In its most simple configuration it results in a DVD-Video disc with a blank/black video screen but preserves your FLAC/WAV track in (as far as I can tell) original quality. So if you would like an alternative, I have been very pleased with this program.

 

 

Office: iPod classic/iPad -> Shure SE425 IEM Home: Oppo BDP-83/Synology DS211j -> Integra DTR-7.8 -> Revel speakers

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So it sounds like the server software on the Synology NAS limits output to 16/48 via USB and the DacMagic definitely limits input to 16/44 by USB.

 

My thought is you are already limited by the DacMagic you own. So don't buy a new piece of hardware that it also limited.

 

If you goal is 24/96 via USB, make your next purchase compatible with that goal.

 

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Hi,

 

After reading your review on Synology DS411 slim, I bought brand new Synology DS411(regular) to act as music server with my squeezbox duet and dac magic (toslink connection)connected to Naim XS amp. Network connection is wired trugh ethernet cat6 wires.

 

This set up tookover a recent Acer desktop computer with 600G HD filled with mp3, cd's ripped under FLAC and HIGH RES 24/88, 24/96 and 24/192 files. Everything is working fine with files transfered from my previous computer to the NAS, except the HIGH RES FILES. Which are availaible on the squeezbox but no sound is coming out (they were working fine on the ACER/squeezbox although downgraded to 24/48).

 

Just read the previous post and I am now under pannic;

If I get it it right Synology NAS downgrade high res to 16/41. I also tried to connection on my Cambridge 640R (onboard 24/192 dac), no more success on high res, still no sound.

 

I bought the NAS due to my increasing number of high res files.

Is there an application I can install on the 411 or some set up I can do to allow high res to be output from the 411.

 

thank's

 

 

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If you're playing the files through your Squeezebox the problem should have nothing to do with the NAS, because you're streaming the files over the ethernet cable.

 

There's either a problem with the Squeezebox setup, or it can't handle certain bitrates. It may just do up to 96. I would check at the Squeezebox end.

 

-Chris

 

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Hi rdom,

I use a very similar setup (DS411, SB Touch) and I can confirm that hi res files are downsampled (almost) correctly.

Back in September I ran a number of tests to verify this and I have attached the results of the test.

I have tested the downsampling behaviour of Squeezebox Server running on a Windows 7 PC and running on a Synology DS411.

Streaming from a Windows 7 PC downsamples all bitrates perfectly and works flawlessy both with a SB3 and with an SB Touch. Be aware that the SB3 has a bitrate limit of 48khz, while the SB Touch goes to 96khz.

Streaming from the DS411 has a few quirks, as you can see from the attached Excel:

- Files > 48khz do not stream at all to an SB3, they do stream to an SB Touch.

- 176.4khz files downsample to 96khz instead of 88.2 khz, which is both processor intensive and will (slightly) impact quality, if the algorithms used is not of very high quality.

I have sent these results to Synology in September and I am hoping they will correct these quirks in the next version of their Squeezebox server. The original Squeezbox Server software from Logitech for Win7 does not show these quirks.

I would check whether your Squeezebox server on the DS411 is setup correctly for downsampling. AFAIK in the Touch there is nothing to setup.

Regards

Rudi

 

 

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Thank you for the quick feedbacks on my issue.

 

Rudy, I was amazed by your efficient and helpfull comnents. The excel file gave me explanation to what was really happening. I should have checked that before buying the Synology.

 

A solution would be the acquisition of Touch to replace de Duet, would not be worthwile as I will still have my high res files downsampled to 24/48 due to Synology. I really hope they fix that problem soon (I will go after them to)!

 

I decided that meanwhile a new Synology squeezserver version is availiable, I will keep my high res files on my Acer desktop wich is already doing the downsampling correctly, leave all other files < 48khz on the Synology and switch sources from the duet remote. Will still have opportunity to play my high res files thru ACER/Cambridge basement set up.

 

I will now concentrate on next improvment for my duet/naim XS set up, witch will be getting a better DAC. will consider new DAC Magic+ and audiolab MDAC.

 

Does this make sense to you.

 

Thank's a lot again and hello to switzerland, we were there this september and really enjoy your country.

 

Robert.

Canada

 

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