Can you make your PC stream music to a high standard, what equipment would you suggest to do so?

Sep 30, 2021
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Hi everybody,

I am looking to get the best possible sound quality when watching music onYoutube (paid version) on my PC.

I am in the process of getting a new PC and wondering if anything I should be looking for from an audio perspective? Also any other things I need to do, or get to improve the quality?

Currently, the speakers attached are some old Harman/Kardon Soundsticks. Also I use as well as Dragonfly red usb Dac connected to a pair of Sony WH-1000XM4 headphones.

Look forward to your advice and hearing about your expereinces.
 
Last edited:

daddyo

Active member
Nov 7, 2021
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No responses to your post ? Surprised.
You already have a great setup with the Dragonfly and your headphones. Typically, the DAC that comes in the PC isn't optimized for music and is the weak link. But for the speakers/amp/DAC, now that is a whole different discussion. Are you satisfied with the H/K ?
 

RobGardner

Well-known member
Jul 22, 2008
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I used to use an Apple MacBook Pro to listen to music, not quite the same, but there is probably some common ground here.
Anything you can do to minimise micro vibrations within the system. I noticed a definite uplift in audio quality when I changed the hard drive to an ssd. I guess as it’s a new PC it will come with an ssd. Any flat panels, use dynamat foil on them to deaden vibrations.
It always sounded better running on battery than using a mains supply, so I think that you might want to explore using as clean a power supply as you can. I used Amarra as a music server and the sound quality was much better than iTunes ( which is actually very reliable, works well and sounds pretty good).
I never tried a dedicated audio card as the audio engine in the MacBook was very very good indeed once Amarra got hold of it. I did have to use a usb to spdif converter to get audio to my hifi as I didn’t have a usb input to my DAC. I did use an Audioquest usb jitterbug but I was never convinced this made any difference.

I do now use a NAS drive to stream my music and I have found that sticking it on Stillpoints (expensive) and using a hifi mains cable and a mains conditioning power supply (Tacima) made it sound much better. After trying very expensive hifi Ethernet cables I settled on good quality standard cat8 cable that worked very nearly as well. I also used dynamat on the flat panels. I also recently discovered that the quality of the psu to my router makes a difference.

I have probably gone off at a bit of a tangent, but dynamat is inexpensive and made a huge difference on my NAS and Ethernet switch.
 

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