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Old 12th February 2013, 07:22 AM   #841
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I've redone the Toolbox. It's now Rev 6 and uses squeezelite instead of squeezeplay as audio engine.

No need for EDO (except the EDO-kernel for 192khz and USB DACs) anymore.

I don't know if I'm gonna release it. To many smartypants out there who put a box and a ribbon around all this and make nice business with it.
In the audiophile world all this work is worth a little fortune, in the IT and consumer world it's worth nothing.

Adrian is obviously facing a similar situation with squeezelite. You'll see how many network streamers will pop up that are using squeezelite as engine.



Cheers

Last edited by soundcheck; 12th February 2013 at 07:30 AM.
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Old 12th February 2013, 10:59 AM   #842
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Hi,

Thanks for your response.. I didn't mean to scratch a sore spot, I'm just a diy'er trying to get my gear to work properly.. I remember reading those posts back in august, but your blog still shows TT30, so I thought to post on here..

Thanks for all your efforts!

Ta
CM
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Old 28th February 2013, 11:14 AM   #843
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Hi there.

I'd like to share an experience from last weekend.

Last weekend I've been at a friends place.

He's been using my latest Touch-Toolbox and Server-Toolbox and a HW tweaked Touch that was connected via Toslink running into a DDX320, or a TP Bufallo and just recently into a NAD M51 (a real nice DAC) for a while.

Inspired by JPLAY related discussions and hype he decided to build a PC platform from scratch that would match the JPLAY communities latest and best ever recommendations and settings. And that also includes a master/slave (two PCs) configuration.
Basically he spent quite some time and money to built a JPLAY transport.

For me it was time to figure out, where am I at with my stuff and...

...traveled to Frankfurt.


We tried all kind of interfaces (HDMI/USB/TOSLINK) on the NAD M51 running his JPLAY setup config first.

I also brought my own Toslink cables (Lifatec Silflex / Mutec / Van den Hul).
We also compared those Toslinks.

To make a long story short. We ended up feeding the NAD with Lifatec Silflex Toslink. Everything sounded clean, black ,rock solid without any hint of sharpness/edginess, which was audible via the other interfaces. The Liftatec glas Toslink was simply better then the other plastic type Toslinks.

Optical isolation - if done right - IMO rocks. I guess I mentioned that before.

That was Phase I.

Phase II

Now we tested the SBT hooked up to an old 2 CPU PC, which acted as SB server against the new PC and JPLAY. Surprise surprise. Not much of a difference. The biggest difference was the awful operation of JPLAY compared to iPeng. Anyhow. There was no clear winner.
I have to admit, the JPLAY guys and community definately have done quite a good job with that tool regarding sound quality.
If Jplay is much better then other Windows based players such as XXHighend or Cplay I can't tell. Though I'd guess that OSX based audiophile players would have difficulties to compete. These just don't dive that deep into OS manipulations.


However. I wasn't really happy with the result for obvious reasons. A draw wouldn't be acceptable for me.

I had to make sure to have a fair comparision (and to keep some distance to JPLAY.)

Bottom line. I convinced him to use his brandnew 4 CPU i5 Jplay server as Squeezeboxserver.

I did the swap. Reconfigured and optimized the setup and kernel for that machine. And here we go.

From that point on there was no more drive to switch back to JPLAY.

It always amazes me, how much impact the server HW and SW has. Even with a wireless connection in between.


Later on he mentioned, that we've forgotten to power the server SSD ( that one with the Linux installed on it) by a battery supply. (Note: The data disk was already powered externally.)


Hmmh. Please. Let's not overdo it.

He insisted doing it. Ok. Let's go for it.

Done.

After the first 5 seconds of playback, it was clear that something had
changed. I'd say there are people out there who'd spent a couple of hundred $ to achieve similar with a new DAC.

I don't even try to find an explanation for that.
I just continue to blame the manufacturers not being able to develop DACs that wouldn't respond to slightest changes on upstream equipment.

Obviously I have to tweak my server a little further.

Conclusion. With my Touch setup, I'm still well on track.

Another learning when comparing my to his setup when I got back home Sunday night:

I probably don't need a NAD M51. My DDX seems to be doing quite well.
I rather need to look for a new tweeter. His Eton ER4 ribbon just manages to deliver slightly more air, details and texture. On the other hand my own tweeter
offers slightly better dynamics. I'd need to find a tweeter that can do both -- maybe a Beyma TPL150??? Two of them would cost me about 1 grand.
Hmmh. One grand for a little extra air. Perhaps I'd rather grep my MTB and get some fresh air for free.

Enjoy.

(Sorry, if I bore you to death with stuff like that.)

PS: The Touch was running with screen attached during the tests. He still got some room for improvement.

Last edited by soundcheck; 28th February 2013 at 11:44 AM.
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Old 28th February 2013, 10:04 PM   #844
erin is offline erin  Australia
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Hello,
Are you saying you ran toslink straight out of the Jplay PC from a soundcard, or directly from the motherboard?
Which soundcard?

thank you
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Old 1st March 2013, 08:40 AM   #845
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He has been testing several options for quality digital audio output from his PC.

He ended up with an external powered PCIe card, an Asus Xonar D2X.


Of course our comparison is not Apples vs. Apples and my conclusion can't be seen as "absolute" conclusion.
The conclusion, as usual, is pretty subjective -- without any commericial interest in mind.

It's one system vs. another system, with hundreds of different variables in the game.

However. I do think the systems act very similar. The same tweaks on either system will have very similar effects.
That's what makes them comparable to me.

Cheers

Last edited by soundcheck; 1st March 2013 at 08:49 AM.
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Old 2nd March 2013, 07:21 AM   #846
le´flu is offline le´flu  Germany
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Hi soundcheck an all,

does anybody ever tried the SBT with USB out and Audioquest Dragonfly?
Will that work anyway?

Greetings Ulf
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Old 2nd March 2013, 07:51 AM   #847
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No problem. Just install EDO. And optional , you might feed external 5V.
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Old 2nd March 2013, 08:45 AM   #848
le´flu is offline le´flu  Germany
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Quote:
Originally Posted by soundcheck View Post
No problem. Just install EDO. And optional , you might feed external 5V.
Thanks, so i have to read how to do the EDO app on SBT.

As to the external 5V ... at USB plugs pin 1 is GND and 4 is +5V.
So have to get USB female-male connector and fit in external 5V PSU.
What do you recommend here?

greetings Ulf
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Old 2nd March 2013, 10:06 AM   #849
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I cut the USB cable on the positive lead. Leave the positive on Touch/PC side open and feed the external 5V lead towards the DAC.
The ground of the external suppply gets soldered to the USB cable ground, which still connects Touch and DAC.

As 5V supply I'd recommend to try a Li-Ion 5V USB-battery (those you'd use for charging your phones).
Just cut an old USB cable and use that as supply cable.

If you'd introduce a switch you might even be able to load the battery via the Touchs USB-5V during idle time.


Cheers

Last edited by soundcheck; 2nd March 2013 at 10:14 AM.
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Old 2nd March 2013, 12:41 PM   #850
le´flu is offline le´flu  Germany
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Hi Soundcheck,

thanks - will try that.
Btw. what USB-male to female do you prefer between SBT and
DragonFly? Are there differences between USB cable?
What is best to use between D-Fly and Preamp ?

Greetings ULf
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