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Old 22nd February 2010, 08:00 PM   #1
NV&H is offline NV&H  United States
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Default iTunes/computer feeding an external DAC: The iTunes Equalizer

I have an external Musical Fidelity (V-DAC) USB DAC that's fed from a Mac computer via iTunes. I've noticed that the equalizer within iTunes can still be turned on running this way. I was very surprised by this because I just assumed that the equalizer operated in the analog domain. And I assumed that, for "purity of signal" reasons, this feature would be locked out when a lossless digital stream is being pulled out.

I don't yet have the speakers to fully evaluate the quality of the equalizer, so, can you share your opinions about any signal degradation caused by the equalizer operating this way?
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Old 26th February 2010, 05:43 PM   #2
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Do you need it? Of course it can work (as can the in-iTunes volume control), but better don't use it
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Old 26th February 2010, 06:19 PM   #3
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no application will comunicate directly with the dac i think, as far as i know all audio apps on mac realy on the coreAudio which then routes the signal to the hardware devices selected. for sure it's how itunes works.

compared to a 64bit linear phase VST equalizer i found that it is really degrading... also on it's own, before i was able to compare it seemed to suck life out of the drivers, but then maybe it was me doing wrong-exagerate equalization. to route the signal to a VST equalizer you need something like:

the free (i don't know how to use it) Jack OS X - a Jack implementation for Mac OS X
or the shareware very easy Rogue Amoeba | Audio Hijack Pro: Record Any Audio On Mac OS X

then just use the VST you prefer, there is one 32-bands built-in osx for pro-audio but to me it didn't sound as good as a 64-bit ultra-powerful-presets shareware i can't recall the name (there is a thread about DSP in the fullrange section of this forum)

also as suggested i would keep the digital volume control from itunes at its 100% position
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