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Old 6th July 2004, 08:00 PM   #31
pburke is offline pburke  Germany
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woudn't it be better to use a sound card that works at 44.1kHz natively and ignore all the resampling?


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Old 6th July 2004, 09:37 PM   #32
lucpes is offline lucpes  Europe
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Quote:
Originally posted by pburke
woudn't it be better to use a sound card that works at 44.1kHz natively and ignore all the resampling?


Peter
You mean a card that plays 44.1 without resampling

IMO a better transport (better soundcard in this case) would help in most cases and one may find audible differences between better cards/cheap cards/onboard (due to jitter amount on SPDIF out) rather stunning. So far it's been a general consensus regarding positive experiences using M-Audio, RME cards or possibly the new EMU 1212M marketed under Creative name.
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Old 7th July 2004, 01:02 AM   #33
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Would another option be to get the I2S signal from the output of the EMU10K chip and make your own SPDIF output with low jitter? or is this asking for trouble? Kinda like an opposite DIR1703. I have been thinking about getting a better soundcard but thats only after several other things I wanna get first.

But the thing is how much improvement are we talking about here; from SBLive to Maudio - the TEAC VRDS T1 is meant to be a pretty good transport and if a 27 soundcard albeit with the data on the harddisk, sounds better, MUCH better this was no small difference. Then how much better can it get? I can hear vast amounts of detail in the sound, every little percussive flicker, vocal reflections from the environment natural or otherwise. Multiple voices or instruments are wonderfully separated making the sound really clear. I dont doubt that a better soundcard could sound better, but HOW much better is the question. All I really want one for is the SPDIF output, paying more gets you better opamps and DACs on the output stage, which im not interested in at all. One thing I would miss is the EMU10K chip and the KXdrivers on the SBlive. Does any specialist audio company make a high quality SPDIF output for a computer without anything else besides the digiout?
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Old 7th July 2004, 11:01 AM   #34
lucpes is offline lucpes  Europe
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At least in the <$200 range no one bothers to go beyond mainstream sigma-delta AKM DACs and NE5532s. An M-Audio Revolution uses the same digital output circuitry (75ohm, transformer coupled) as other M-Audio cards and costs around $100 - it's a best buy if you want to go digital for music / or analog out for Home Theater use.

Best bet would be to try to 'loan' a better card for testing and see if there's any difference.

PS. There's no reason why you cannot fool around a bit with using better capacitors/bypass the existing ones for decoupling (clock supply/ICs in the digital path of the SB Live! ). Rubycon ZA low esr caps are small in size & fit like a charm for this purpose, albeit a bit on the expensive side from Farnell.

To desolder caps & clean trough-holes effectively and not ruin the board (I managed to do that by not using this method) due to hard to heat ground plane, carefully pull the existing cap out without using desolder pump, heat the through-hole on one side then quickly move to the other side & heat while applying the desoldering pump on the side where you first heated. All solder should come out in 5 seconds at most this way without any damage.

And regarding playing wavs from the HDD there's absolutely no reason not to compress those using lossless compression (ape/flac). Should save you some space - see my post in this thread: PC music players
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