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Old 5th June 2014, 08:41 AM   #1
surfstu is offline surfstu  United Kingdom
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Default integrating motherboard and diy dac for media server

Hi,
I've built a Chinese dac 4398 and modified with transformer outputs and was pleased with the result, I now want to build another dac specifically for a media server. My question is, can I build a good quiet psu from the 12v or 5v rail off the pc psu? And where would I take the digital signal from on the motherboard? Would I just use the spdif that's already on the board?

AND, what would be a good media server to access from a pretty web interface to serve bit perfect data to the dac? I like daphile but I'm unsure about running it in a virtual environment and this system needs to also serve as a raid array NAS,

Thoughts would be appreciated, stu
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Old 6th June 2014, 04:07 PM   #2
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Since no one else answered I will try.

PC power supplies are generally noisy, so I wouldn't try to use the PC supply to generate your power rails. It's easy enough to build a simple linear supply that should be quieter than the PC supply.

Also, PC's in general are noisy environments, lots of high speed signals running around generating a lot of rf noise. If you're thinking about building the PC and DAC in one box you might reconsider, but it depends how picky you are about the results.

For my system, I have an amanero board that converts usb to I2S. This plugs into my DAC, which feeds the I2S into the DAC chip. I guess you could use SPDIF out of a PC motherboard, but I would be suspect of the quality of the SPDIF signal coming from a PC. Again, depends how picky you are.

Randy
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Old 6th June 2014, 11:05 PM   #3
surfstu is offline surfstu  United Kingdom
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Default thanks

Appreciated...hmmm USB from PC to dac instead of SPDIF? The DAC I'm thinking on is based on the AK4399 chip, it has an options for USB, one is a cheaper option and the other is the XMOS chip? I've not come across anamero boards before. Would the XMOS board be doing the same thing? converting USB to I2s?

With regards to the PSU, I thought that would be the case. Such a shame because my friend is donating a really nice modular PC PSU to me for my Media server / NAS drive

Stu
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Old 6th June 2014, 11:19 PM   #4
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xmos would be converting USB to I2S

DAC END

A little ways down on this page, he compares a few different options for USB to I2S. I have the first generation of this DAC, it was designed for the Amanero board to plug into it.
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