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Old 20th September 2012, 11:01 AM   #341
jrobson is offline jrobson  South Africa
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Quote:
Originally Posted by orpheus View Post
I received the board today, thank you!

I have issues implementing the board with my Buffalo II, and I am curious if anyone has any suggestions. I have the older 80Mhz clock version of the Buffalo II, and use a Volumite. I run OSX Lion on a hackintosh as my source.

I hooked up the Amanero to the Buffalo II with about 8 inches of CAT5 cable, using three sets of twisted pairs, with the white cables soldered to ground, and the colored cables from Amanero to Buffalo- DATA to D2, FSCLK to D1, BCLK to DCLK.

It works, with the ground connected or not connected, but I get an annoying high pitched noise that is constant. I also get what sound like very quick dropouts, short stutters that seem to have no discernable pattern.

Any suggestions? Has anyone had success with this board and the 80Mhz Buffalo II? Do I have to unhook the USB power supply and hook the Amanero up to the 5 volt supply on my Buffalo?

I have an Otto II i2s switcher that I haven't tried yet, perhaps that will magically get rid of the noise. I have been considering getting the Transporter to use with my hacked SACD player with a DSD output, perhaps the transporter would solve the noise problem? There is also different firmware available from Twisted Pear, perhaps that is all I need?

Thank you for your time and help.
Aaron.
Hi

I also have noise, look in the documentation there is a simple isolation circuit, 8" is too long, mine is at 1" and so far it is rock solid except for the noise, noticed even when the DAC is turned off, I don't however have this noise when connecting the module to my notebook, so this appears to be a PC issue rather than a problem with the module, the isolation circuit is very simple to do though, have ordered the parts, will post back how it goes once done.

Last edited by jrobson; 20th September 2012 at 11:03 AM.
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Old 20th September 2012, 01:47 PM   #342
2A3SET is offline 2A3SET  Canada
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Default Is it a good idea to isolate between Amtel and Xilink?

Is it feasible to put isolation (data lines from Amtel to Xilink, clock from Xilink to Amtel), cut the ground, and reclock the output of CPLD?
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Old 20th September 2012, 02:34 PM   #343
2A3SET is offline 2A3SET  Canada
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Just realized it's too complicate, probably should feed external isolated clock to CPLD and reclock the isolated i2s/dsd.
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Old 20th September 2012, 03:36 PM   #344
glt is offline glt  United States
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Quote:
Originally Posted by orpheus View Post
I received the board today, thank you!

...

It works, with the ground connected or not connected, but I get an annoying high pitched noise that is constant. I also get what sound like very quick dropouts, short stutters that seem to have no discernable pattern.

...
Aaron.
Sounds like a problem in the PC side.

Things to try:
- Different USB port
- Power conditioner for the PC and also for the DAC
- Put a ferrite at the end of the USB cable or use a USB cable that already has a ferrite built in
- Shield the board
- The board has a CLC filter for the USB power. Try adding capacitance to the first capacitor (C27)
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Old 20th September 2012, 04:03 PM   #345
orpheus is offline orpheus  United States
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Quote:
Originally Posted by qusp View Post
what samplerates are you trying to play? also try loosening DPLL bandwidth settings on BII. 8" is a bit long, but I wouldnt have thought it would be enough to make it unusable. unlock issues with some sources were common with early firmware, also try as low tech as it sounds, to let the system warm up for 30 mins or so.

the OTTO wont help
Unfortunately I think that the only way to change the DPLL settings on the Buffalo II is through an Arduino (which I have not yet implemented) or getting a new firmware chip from Twisted Pear. My firmware is at least a few years old, I got it when I installed the Volumite. I did let the DAC warm up for that time period and still experienced the same issues. Perhaps I should order new firmware from TP (and get cracking on that arduino).

The problems occur at 44.1khz and up, with more than 192khz resulting in just noise because the clock in the Buffalo II (old version, 80Mhz) cannot handle those sampling rates (at least I think that's why they don't work).

The cable is shorter than 8 inches, I overestimated the length. I just eyeballed it with a sheet of paper, and it is probably around 5 inches.

Is there a simple way to power the Amanero with the 5 volt supply that is powering my DAC? I think that might help, because other people have had issues implementing the MUX with a separate power supply.

I looked at the application notes and saw that there is a recommendation for an isolator (mentioned above as well). The isolator would be difficult to implement without a board. TI sells an a board for the isolator for $49, which I could get, but I hope to find a different solution. There is also a board that isolates the USB supply that might help, but I am not certain that it would (might be fun to try though...).

Thanks for everyones help and suggestions. Hopefully I will be able to get this working well.

Aaron.

Last edited by orpheus; 20th September 2012 at 04:05 PM. Reason: fixed hyperlink
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Old 20th September 2012, 04:29 PM   #346
andpa is offline andpa  Russian Federation
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+1 for me.
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Old 20th September 2012, 04:40 PM   #347
glt is offline glt  United States
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Quote:
Originally Posted by orpheus View Post
Unfortunately I think that the only way to change the DPLL settings on the Buffalo II is through an Arduino (which I have not yet implemented) or getting a new firmware chip from Twisted Pear. My firmware is at least a few years old, I got it when I installed the Volumite. I did let the DAC warm up for that time period and still experienced the same issues. Perhaps I should order new firmware from TP (and get cracking on that arduino).

The problems occur at 44.1khz and up, with more than 192khz resulting in just noise because the clock in the Buffalo II (old version, 80Mhz) cannot handle those sampling rates (at least I think that's why they don't work).

The cable is shorter than 8 inches, I overestimated the length. I just eyeballed it with a sheet of paper, and it is probably around 5 inches.

Is there a simple way to power the Amanero with the 5 volt supply that is powering my DAC? I think that might help, because other people have had issues implementing the MUX with a separate power supply.

I looked at the application notes and saw that there is a recommendation for an isolator (mentioned above as well). The isolator would be difficult to implement without a board. TI sells an a board for the isolator for $49, which I could get, but I hope to find a different solution. There is also a board that isolates the USB supply that might help, but I am not certain that it would (might be fun to try though...).

Thanks for everyones help and suggestions. Hopefully I will be able to get this working well.

Aaron.
What were you using before? SPDIF input?. I believe the original TPA firmware had the DPLL set at "lowest" and thus it will work with SPDIF but with I2S you will get dropouts. However, the dropouts will be much reduced as the DAC warms up. There is a difference between "dropouts" and "crackling". In dropouts you will see the lock LED flash. If it is "crackling", then that is from the source.

My experience is that cable length even at 8" would not cause any problems.

The USB isolator does not handle USB2 speeds.

Try finding the source of the noise before trying to filter it at the end. I would consider this a last resort solution. Try the zero or near zero options first before spending any money. Try a laptop or another source to determine if you have a faulty device or not.

Based on the schematics, the Amanero board is well engineered with good power filtering and bypassing everywhere...
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Last edited by glt; 20th September 2012 at 04:44 PM.
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Old 20th September 2012, 04:54 PM   #348
qusp is offline qusp  Australia
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Quote:
Originally Posted by August View Post
This certainly looks interesting. Is there any reasonably simple way to turn that I2S into SDIF-2 to feed my dCS 972/955 inputs?
umm, no...

even if you could I really dont know why you would get this board if you were going to do that. for starters there is no way to send the DSD over spdif and the max PCM you could send is 192khz. With the added jitter and cost for adding a further i2s->Spdif stage to this, you may as well just get another USB->SPDIF module.

I presume you thought you could send DSD somehow?
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Old 20th September 2012, 05:21 PM   #349
MrSlim is offline MrSlim  Canada
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Quote:
Originally Posted by orpheus View Post
I looked at the application notes and saw that there is a recommendation for an isolator (mentioned above as well). The isolator would be difficult to implement without a board. TI sells an a board for the isolator for $49, which I could get, but I hope to find a different solution. There is also a board that isolates the USB supply that might help, but I am not certain that it would (might be fun to try though...).

Thanks for everyones help and suggestions. Hopefully I will be able to get this working well.

Aaron.
The Isolator board that you linked to also does not support USB 2.0 High Speed, so you would be limited to 24/96.
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Old 20th September 2012, 05:28 PM   #350
orpheus is offline orpheus  United States
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Quote:
Originally Posted by glt View Post
What were you using before? SPDIF input?. I believe the original TPA firmware had the DPLL set at "lowest" and thus it will work with SPDIF but with I2S you will get dropouts. However, the dropouts will be much reduced as the DAC warms up. There is a difference between "dropouts" and "crackling". In dropouts you will see the lock LED flash. If it is "crackling", then that is from the source.

My experience is that cable length even at 8" would not cause any problems.

The USB isolator does not handle USB2 speeds.

Try finding the source of the noise before trying to filter it at the end. I would consider this a last resort solution. Try the zero or near zero options first before spending any money. Try a laptop or another source to determine if you have a faulty device or not.

Based on the schematics, the Amanero board is well engineered with good power filtering and bypassing everywhere...
Thank you for taking the time to respond. I appreciate your help.

Right now I am using the Buffalo with a MUX, SPDIF to i2s. I don't experience any noise or dropouts with this configuration. I also have a Philips 963 SACD player hacked to output DSD, and this works without noise or issues into the i2s inputs on my DAC as well. I assume that I have the firmware that has the DPLL at the "lowest" setting, it has been a few years since I installed my Volumite (I think before the clock on the Buffalo II went to 100Mhz).

Should the ground be connected from the Amanero to the Buffalo? It plays music either way, but is one a better choice?

I did try my laptop last night, but it made too much noise and I had to stop (likely because it seems the default setting on the Amanero is maximum). I will try to get it working better this afternoon and report back. I'll look for the lock light and see if it goes on and off.

Aaron.
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