Air and Magic

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crusaderlord

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Apr 29, 2008
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Chebby - a good point and yes a bad choice of terminology i used and i do appreciate CD is still digital in format.

I agree that sub-conciously i treat CD's as an attractive hardware style item and a PC media file as something quite different and 'digital' (by that i feel it has no substance to touch, hold etc). I know the truth is different but thats how it is perceived and this i would say is a common feeling across many hi-fi users.
 
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Anonymous

Guest
JohnDuncan:Audiofoolius:If you want to have the same soundquality on a harddisk you have to rip into WAV (no loss of quality whatsoever). Second best are FLAC and Apple Lossless (about 800 kb/s).

No - FLAC and apple lossless are decoded at runtime to produce the equivalent PCM that WAV would, but with the advantage of reduced storage cost. The bitrates displayed in iTunes for apple lossless (700-1000kbps, say) are an indication of the complexity of the music, but they produce exactly the same quality as WAV.

I can prove this with a home computer.

Spot on John, Apple lossless and FLAC retain the same amount of information as WAV but use less disc space so I think are superior also they retain the tags when you rip, saves all that typing.........
 
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Anonymous

Guest
Aaahhh i must have gotten my numbers mixed up then!

I've already re-ripped some music to lossless, but for in car listening (the main time for mp3) i didn't notice much difference bar a shrillness to the treble on the 192kbps rips.

thanks for your help guys.
 

Audiofoolius

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Aug 12, 2008
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JohnDuncan:Audiofoolius:If you want to have the same soundquality on a harddisk you have to rip into WAV (no loss of quality whatsoever). Second best are FLAC and Apple Lossless (about 800 kb/s).No - FLAC and apple lossless are decoded at runtime to produce the equivalent PCM that WAV would, but with the advantage of reduced storage cost. The bitrates displayed in iTunes for apple lossless (700-1000kbps, say) are an indication of the complexity of the music, but they produce exactly the same quality as WAV.I can prove this with a home computer.

ÿ

Then I've learned something new again at this wonderful place. ;-) As I rip all my music to Apple Lossless I like what you're saying too. :) Thanks JD! ÿ
 

John Duncan

Well-known member
Jan 8, 2008
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fast eddie:Aaahhh i must have gotten my numbers mixed up then!

I've already re-ripped some music to lossless, but for in car listening (the main time for mp3) i didn't notice much difference bar a shrillness to the treble on the 192kbps rips.

thanks for your help guys.

No, I rip all my music to 128 on the fly when transferring to my shuffle, and it sounds fine. But through something more revealing, you can tell the difference.
 
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Anonymous

Guest
Airfoil for Windows and Windows Media Player DO NOT work

Try and see if you get the same error I do. Specifically the message says..

Protected Media Path

Due to the use of Microsoft's Prtected Media Path (PMP) technology, Airfoil can not pull audio fom Windows Media Player. If possible, please use another program to play your audio

So the blurb says that Airfoil will work with all media sources is blatently wrong.....

Stop Press

Mmmmmmmm I get the error message but with a bit of fiddling I got it to work.....whats going on here then?????
 

Clare Newsome

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Jun 4, 2007
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I dunno, where were all you lot when the Airport Express won its first What Hi-fi? Sound and Vision Award in 2004
 
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Anonymous

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Clare Newsome:I dunno, where were all you lot when the Airport Express won its first What Hi-fi? Sound and Vision Award in 2004


ÿIraq
ÿ
 

professorhat

Well-known member
Dec 28, 2007
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Clare Newsome:I dunno, where were all you lot when the Airport Express won its first What Hi-fi? Sound and Vision Award in 2004


That year, I was mostly eating acorns.
 

fatboyslimfast

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Jan 10, 2008
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Clare Newsome:I dunno, where were all you lot when the Airport Express won its first What Hi-fi? Sound and Vision Award in 2004


Ah, but were there DACs connected to it?
 

John Duncan

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Jan 8, 2008
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Clare Newsome:I dunno, where were all you lot when the Airport Express won its first What Hi-fi? Sound and Vision Award in 2004


All going "what's that for then?". Along with that Sonnetter Bard thingie. But that had a weird shape and was hundreds of quid. See, I was kind of paying attention.

Course, I often read articles and go "what's that for then?" - cf Slingbox, which I read and thought "why on earth would I want to carry that round with me in my laptop bag just to watch my home telly?".
 

John Duncan

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Jan 8, 2008
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Clare Newsome:I dunno, where were all you lot when the Airport Express won its first What Hi-fi? Sound and Vision Award in 2004


Either that or going "yeah but it needs a wireless network and I'm still on 56k dial up so it's no use to me" and blanking it from our memories.
 

chebby

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Jun 2, 2008
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chebby:It is not all iTunes though. I am loving internet radio and youtube, Sonic Bomb etc etc via the DAC. (Listening to Radio Paradise at 128kbps right now. V nice)

Correction. I am now listening to Radio Paradise at 192kbps on Windows Media Player rather than the restricted 128kbps version on iTunes. (All WMP 'enhancements' turned off.) It sounds glorious!

Best internet station I have come across in ages (and no intrusive DJs or ads).

http://www.radioparadise.com/musiclinks/rp_192.m3u

Other bit rate options...

http://www.radioparadise.com/content.php?name=Listen

You Mac people will need to use this (Flip4Mac) free Windows Media player for your Apple machine...

http://www.microsoft.com/windows/windowsmedia/player/wmcomponents.mspx

(Or you can find the lesser 128kbps version of Radio Paradise on iTunes radio under 'Eclectic' and filed under R)
 
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Anonymous

Guest
Very interesting. There's something I don't get though.

I understand from a previous thread that you're better off connecting to the DACMagic using the optical in rather than the USB for optimum sound quality (said by the Cambridge CEO). But people seem to be suggesting that the fact you can connect Airport Express to DAC via optical somehow bypasses the problem of not having an optical out from your computer. Isn't that missing the point? How can a wireless stream of the file off your computer be better than a simple USB connection? Have I misunderstood something?
 

Craig M.

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Mar 20, 2008
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i think it is because when sending audio over usb, there is other information specific to usb, being sent at the same time. i could be wrong, but i seem to recall reading that if you have a 16 bit usb interface and try to send 16 bit audio, you end up with about 13 or 14 bit audio with the remaining used by usb functions.
 
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Anonymous

Guest
I've been using a AE as a source for my DAC XP. Honestly cannot tell the difference between it and the CD8X. I use the remote app on my iPhone to browse through my iTunes library ... its very very neat indeed. Everything ripped using EAC and compressed to Apple lossless.

The AE is a really tidy solution. It means that there is no need for a noisy PC in your listening room (for me any amount of noise spoils the listening experience, particularly at night when listening at low levels) and the digital out quality has been proven to be spot on as JD mentioned. Marry it up with a decent DAC and it will be incredibly difficult to beat and I am not just talking about the versatility but the sound quality.
 

professorhat

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Dec 28, 2007
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Craig M.:i think it is because when sending audio over usb, there is other information specific to usb, being sent at the same time. i could be wrong, but i seem to recall reading that if you have a 16 bit usb interface and try to send 16 bit audio, you end up with about 13 or 14 bit audio with the remaining used by usb functions.

I don't know for sure, but that makes sense. Certainly there's no way only the information in the original file is the only information sent,,, simple as that.
 

chebby

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Jun 2, 2008
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Charlie Jefferson:Mr Chebby,

Terrible thing incipient Mac envy.

Come on, we're all friends here.

I have an iMac 20" (the last white 2007 version before they changed to the current look) and we use an Airport Extreme 802.11n base station as the hub for our wireless.

No envy here. We all like the Mac. If my wife and me and our daughters didn't all have our professional/academic necessities to have PCs at home then I would convert to an all Mac household very quickly!

I Simply chose (for practical reasons in our home) to host my own iTunes on my XP Pro 'work from home' system instead of on the iMac - which is in another room and used mostly by my wife and kids. Using the PC tower system upstairs from the hifi was also a no-no.

I cannot justify shelling out £1000+ for a new, extra iMac just to host iTunes for the hifi. (If I had that money plus the money for a CA Dacmagic & an Airport Express then it would - almost exactly - pay for a Benchmark DAC1 Pre instead. A far better option!)

If our iMac had been a more practical option then I would have used it instead to host iTunes for my lossless files and to connect to a DAC.

Please don't make this out to be Mac vs PC thing on my part.

I use (and like) both, and know full well what advantages can come from using a Mac for music instead of a PC.

And I did try the Airport Express option. (John D knows this) I paid £65 for one a few weeks ago with the intention of using it for wireless music streaming (with a Beresford TC7510 probably) but simply could not get Aiport Utility on the laptop to talk to it even when sitting right on the same desk! So it was not to be. I returned it and got the Firestone Audio Fubar II USB DAC instead.

The Fubar USB DAC is a superb little box and is sounding great (notwithstanding it's 16 bits and 48khz limitation) and will be be sounding greater still on Christmas morning when I get it's partnering Firestone Audio 'Supplier' dedicated power supply to replace the standard 'wall wart'.

The upgrade options for USB are not bleak. There are a number of more advanced DACs that permit use of 24bit/96khz from USB that I can exploit one day when upgrade funds allow.
 

John Duncan

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Jan 8, 2008
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OK, found it on the website. It basically says no more than the USB output only accepts 16 bit word lengths, which presumably means you can't take advantage of 24/96 recorded material - so downsampled to 16 bit then upsampled again? Don't ask me what this means.
 

chebby

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Jun 2, 2008
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JohnDuncan:I'd explain the DACMagic USB 16-bit limitation if I could find my English manual. I can explain it in Dutch if you like?

http://www.cambridgeaudio.com/assets/documents/AP239051DacMagicUserManual01English.pdf

Although there nothing very technical in there.

John, have you checked out the 'Audio-Midi setup' in your Mac? (It defaults to 44.1khz and needs to be manually overridden for 96khz sources. Check it is set to 24 bit as well)

It is in Utilities. (Little piano keyboard symbol)

This may interest you...

http://extra.benchmarkmedia.com/wiki/index.php/OS_X_Audio_Playback_-_Setup_Guide#Fixed_output_sample-rate
 

Gerrardasnails

Well-known member
Sep 6, 2007
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JohnDuncan:No, it's a bit "it just does, ok?" isn't it.

Basically if you have optical or coaxial use that, if you only have usb, it will be fine. HFC say that they did not notice any difference between the three (and they gave it product of the year).
 

chebby

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Jun 2, 2008
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It would be good to see more companies than just Chord and Benchmark exploiting the 24bit/96khz potential of USB. (Not only that, but the Benchmark DAC1 only needs to use USB 1.1)
 

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