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Everything posted by bluesman

  1. I assume from this comment that you haven’t actually heard and compared them yourself. I own and regularly use 7 Pis, 2 of which are 4s and 3 of which are 3B+s. I also have a ZeroW and a 3B. Driving the same DACs (of which I have 5 good 2 channel units plus one fair to middlin’ 6 in/8 out), the 4s sound cleaner, clearer, more detailed and more dynamic playing Redbook flacs and DSD than the stock 3. My overclocked (yes, you can overclock a 3B+ in a few ways) zrammed, cooled 3B+s sound better than stock and almost as good as the stock, cooled 4 gig 4s on easy files (24/96 flacs, D
  2. Source material is one factor. But there are others with major influence, like the design, efficiency and sensitivity of the speakers. The standard amplifier in most Leslie cabinets puts out 40 watts max, and that sucker is loud!
  3. Yes you can. With Volumio 1.X, it was apparently built in. Here's a LINK to a good instruction page for setting up Volumio as a DLNA server using MiniDLNA, which is easy to install with the command apt-get install minidlna. Here's a LINK to a simple instruction page if you're running a Debian distro and here's a LINK if you're running Ubuntu. AFAIK, BubbleUPnP does the same thing as minidlna. Again, I've not tried this myself with Volumio, although I do use Bubble with JRiver to stream to multiple Chromecasts on my WLAN
  4. Yes - the internet radio streaming works great. And DLNA also works, although you may have to do a bit of configuring on some platforms. Here’s a link to the Volumio KB page telling you how to stream to it. The Rune forum also has many threads about DLNA / UPnP streaming to it.
  5. Ahh - now I understand why you’re so down on a Pi. You’re basing your opinion on the last generation. The 4 has true gigabit Ethernet, excellent ac WiFi, separate buses for USB and networking, USB 3, and improved power management. It outperforms the 3B+ on almost all benchmarks by at least a factor of 2. On many, it performs as much as 4 times better (see my own performance test results and the linked web tests in my Value Proposition articles about the Pi). With 4 gigs of RAM onboard and zram installed, there’s no SQ degradation from hitting performance limits, even with DSD.
  6. Out of curiosity, I just Googled "usb audio interface coax input". You can get a very nice ESI interface for $109 from B&H with RCA coax in and USB to your computer - there's even a review there describing exactly what you want to do and praising the result. Here's another box with USB to your laptop and a coax RCA input. There were many more - if you're interested you can look further. There's yet another simple solution that also requires only the purchase of one more piece. You could buy a small, inexpensive USB phono preamp for ripping. You can get the excellent ART USB
  7. That depends on the laptop. If it has a Thunderbolt port or a PCIe expansion slot, you can use an adapter. I’m pretty sure that many current laptops use mini PCIe slots for their wifI & BT adapters, and some have an empty one as well. If yours has one occupied by an adapter you don’t use (eg BT), just take it out and use an external adapter. And, as I said, there are external USB sound cards & interfaces with coax inputs. The Aragon AXA71 Soundbox is such a device - coax input and USB output. M-Audio had at least one too, but coax is not very popular any more so you may h
  8. The simplest answer to your coax question is to get a sound card for your computer with a coax input. You can definitely find several PCIe cards, and I suspect there are still at least a few USB interfaces on the market with an RCA coax input. Google it and you'll probably find at least a few alternatives. Creative Labs has made several decent SoundBlaster cards over the years with coax inputs via RCA jack. The simple and inexpensive way to rip your vinyl is to download Audacity and follow the instructions for ripping records that you'll find all over the web. Audacity has a de
  9. Listening to music was much more of a primary pursuit years ago than it is now. I can't imagine how many thousands of hours I've spent enjoying my music and equipment, building and assembling my systems, introducing my friends to new music, and sharing their latest finds and treasures. I still do this - but I'm fortunate to have a spouse and friends who continue to value this as time well spent. Blaming social media is a bit simplistic. There's an awful lot more to do now than there was in 1960. Home theater wasn't even a dream. Games were played with sticks, balls, boards, dic
  10. My Roon server until I got an Asustor NAS was ROCK on an i3 NUC with SSD & 8 gigs of RAM. My main audio systems are in other rooms, and the NUC sits on a shelf in my library. Out of curiosity 1 day, I plugged my iFi nano DSD into the NUC, stuck a pair of JBL 305s on my desk, and hooked ‘em up. SQ is excellent - tight bass, clear, sweet and smooth mids & highs, and a wonderful naturalness with near field listening. It’s so nice that I left it all in place and now use it instead of the “better” system sitting 15’ away on the shelves. I hear no difference at all between NAS a
  11. People where you work have audio systems at their desks that include low latency, high def BT transceivers with good components? Wow - I wanna work there. I’m talking about serious home systems with good sources, DACs, amps & speakers using optical in and out AptX LL / HD BT to connect the source to the DAC instead of wires. I’m not talking about BT phones and active speakers, very few of which have the latest Qualcomm BT yet.
  12. If you haven't heard the latest aptX codecs on the newest Qualcomm chips, you're in for a surprise. I'm not talking about BT from phones. I'm talking about using dedicated BT transmitters and receivers to connect quality digital audio sources to the digital inputs of DACs and digital amplifiers across the room. Most of the good new BT transceivers have optical inputs and outputs. I was amazed at how good it sounds driving the optical inputs on my DACs (SMSL SU8, Emotiva Stealth into Prima Luna power amp and Focal 726 towers) and digital amplifier (Wadia 151 into Rogers LS3/5As or Focals),
  13. I use and love RealVNC on all my computers and devices. It's an easy download, but you have to put the RealVNC server on each device you want to control and put the viewer on those from which you want to use for control. On a Pi, you only have to turn on the VNC function in the preferences panel to be able to control it from another computer. Right now, I access desktops on 14 computers from my main PC and a few tablets - 2 on Win10, 2 on Ubuntu Studio 20, 2 on Ubuntu 18 LTS, 7 Raspberry Pis, and a Beaglebone Black. The free version only lets you put 5 devices into your account
  14. Thanks! We really don't know what makes the "audio" USB port special, other than a label. It carries power, so that's not a difference. And you've proven that the standard USB ports also send audio to a DAC. So this remains a mystery!
  15. Thanks - your effort is greatly appreciated! But to clarify, if you're running phpSysInfo on your NUC, aren't the two DACs you connected to the Neo two of the seven USB devices it shows connected to gear throughout your network? The fact that both DACs are recognized does not mean that they're on separate buses. I can connect my iFi Nano DSD, Emotiva Stealth, and SMSL SU8 to 3 of the USB ports on any of my PCs with only one USB bus for them all, and they all appear both on network monitors and as zones in Roon. And they all function. The same is true when they're connected to my NUC.
  16. Now it's really getting hard to follow you. If you have a "cabled option" and a router, you have access to your computer through your own LAN. If you only have WLAN upstairs, you still have access to your computer through that. As was already pointed out by someone else, you could use an ethernet port on a WiFi range extender. That Devolo system also looks great, although I've never used this kind of device. If it does what it says it does, it'd probably be a fine solution for network access. And if you run a music server on your PC with your music files stored on its HDD, you
  17. You may be making it more difficult than it needs to be for you. There is no perfect solution - compromise is the key to happiness. Finding a good solution for you means knowing what you want and need from it. Make a list of the facts and functions that are important to you, prioritize them from highest to lowest, and start trialing software to get an idea of which ones offer the most of what you want. Also know what you absolutely don't want, so you don't accidentally end up with something you dislike. For example, do you want to be able to grow into multichannel or is 2 channel
  18. Installing Roon on the Asustor was as easy as installing it on any other device. It only takes a simple click to add it from the Asustor app list. Configuration is also no different. I also stuck a 250G SSD on a USB port for the Roon db, and it's been smooth sailing from day 1. Per Roon, running the server on an SSD (whether internal or USB) is advisable with any storage scheme. It will run OK on mechanical HDDs, but things can get a bit slow when the library grows beyond about 10k files. The SSD is only for Roon server and db - you don't need (or want) SSD storage for your m
  19. Fascinating! Here's the query I sent SOtM USA yesterday morning at 8:30 AM EDT: ________________________________________________________ To: <[email protected]> Subject: New customer message on August 26, 2020 at 8:30 am Name: David Body: Hi - Is the audio USB port in the Neo on a separate bus from the paired USB ports, or are all 3 on the same bus? Does the audio output carry 5V power? Thanks! ________________________________________________________ Here's what I got in reply: __________________________________________________
  20. The latest Qualcomm chips with aptX adaptive (HD and low latency codecs) are really good. It’s still compressed (4:1) but it transfers 24/96 files at 420kbps and is described as being lossless. As part of my research for an upcoming article on wireless for audiophiles, I bought and have been using two powerful $45 transceivers with dual antennas and two tiny $20 ones with internal antennas for everything from simple stereo to full wireless MC using multiple 2 channel DACs driven by 8 channel sound cards. It’s not your father’s Bluetooth. With latency below 40 msec, it works very
  21. Oy! This thread reminds me of the poet who writes best after waking from a deep sleep. He goes from bed to verse 🤑
  22. And that Echo Dot sounds a lot better than the Motorola transistor radio I got for the same money in 1959!
  23. And I thought I was a crusty old curmudgeon 🤪 There’s room in the world for us all, nothing you’re saying is harmful or offensive, and you have a perfect right to your opinion. I don’t even take issue with your expressing it here - after all, we’re all family on AS. But........I think you’re wrong on many counts. It’s not all trash. Good small and inexpensive speakers abound and are selling like hot cakes. The resurgence of vinyl is niche and split between those who recognize and enjoy the experience and those who consider the medium to be an integral part of their
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