Testing SB Touch!!

acalex

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Hi everybody, this fantastic toy arrived today and it really took me 5 minutes to plug it and play some music through it...really user friendly and well presented!

Now I just bypassed the rDAC and connected directly the SB to the ampli and wow...wasn't expecting this quality to be honest! Now I want to start some serious testing SB vs pc+rDAC to see if there is any sensible difference.

Just one question...do you think I can connect the SB to the ampli and the rDAC to another input of the ampli and play the same song at the same time on PC and SB then switching the selector on the amp to do a "real time" test on same song? Or do I risk to damage something?
 

tino

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Shouldn't be a problem if I understand what you want to do is:

(A) Logitech Media Server on PC -> SB (analogue output) -> Analogue input (1) of amp

(B) PC Media Player -> USB -> rDAC -> Analogue input (2) of amp

I think the difficult will be getting the two pieces of music synchronised. What you might want to do is stagger the music by say 10-15 seconds. So that when you switch from (A) to (B) you will hear the same piece of music again.

PS Make sure you choose the right amplifier line inputs (volume controlled) e.g. CD and Aux, and don't use the SB volume control.
 

acalex

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tino said:
Shouldn't be a problem if I understand what you want to do is:

(A) Logitech Media Server on PC -> SB (analogue output) -> Analogue input (1) of amp

(B) PC Media Player -> USB -> rDAC -> Analogue input (2) of amp

I think the difficult will be getting the two pieces of music synchronised. What you might want to do is stagger the music by say 10-15 seconds. So that when you switch from (A) to (B) you will hear the same piece of music again.

Yes you understood correctly! Very good suggestion, in this way it's more easy to differentiate the SQ by listening to the same piece of music...

I activated the option fixed volume control 100% on SB...
 

lesmallett

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I have a SB Touch which I bought in February. It has since been replaced under warrenty a few weeks ago. This new one sounds a lot better than my old one. Have no clue why, maybe they have improved the internals over time.

Anyway there are various programmes you can run on the SB Touch that help improve things slightly by switching off the bits you don't need. Check this out: http://soundcheck-audio.blogspot.com/
 

Ambrose

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Whoo!!

Seems too good to be true doesn't it :rockout:

I have been and still are experimenting with my SBT setup.

So far tried most of Soundcheck mods and a Tacima Mains filter.

Next, to try LAN rather than WLAN currently using to see what difference this makes.

Also found some more mods on another forum which may look into which change the priorites of Alsa buffer etc.

I have to say that so far from the stock SBT there has been a very significant improvement in SQ.

Decoding FLAC on PC server made a small but noticable improvement.

The Mains Filter defo improved soundstage and resolution, but not sure yet if at expense of listenability. Maybe too in your face now.

The Rest of Soundcheck Mods (excl turning off WLAN) made a massive difference to how music was being presented. The Timing and dynamics are back in spades and sounds much more musical. Maybe a little warmer?? Not too sure yet. Will be making a donation in due course :)

I am stuggling when listening at volume or longer periods as really fatiguing. Sound is too harsh/hard and treble needs toning down quite a bit. Maybe dropping Mains filter will help and I feel that the DAC (original DAC magic I) isn't helping in this regard.

Speakers also known to be a little excitable in treble as well.

I really hope that with a better DAC and some further tweaking I will have my best system to date.

Will post some more specifics once been through more testing.

So Acalex, will have to let us know how the touch sounds with the RDAC as I believe this is quite a smooth sounding DAC, at least from my brief experience with it and plenty of bang at the bottom!!

Cheers and enjoy!

Ambrose
 

acalex

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Ambrose said:
....

So Acalex, will have to let us know how the touch sounds with the RDAC as I believe this is quite a smooth sounding DAC, at least from my brief experience with it and plenty of bang at the bottom!!

Cheers and enjoy!

Ambrose

I think I will test more the SB touch itself against pc + rDAC cz I dont think I will get much improvement connecting the SB to the ampli through an external DAC...
 

Ambrose

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Hi Acalex,

Fair enough although I have noticed some more openess in sound using DAC magic vs SBT DAC. Nothing too significant however, although it might be that the RDAC or other DACs will impact the presentation of the music. EG Warmer, fuller, faster, leaner, even if the detail levels / soundstage are similar.

Ambrose
 

acalex

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Ambrose said:
Hi Acalex,

Fair enough although I have noticed some more openess in sound using DAC magic vs SBT DAC. Nothing too significant however, although it might be that the RDAC or other DACs will impact the presentation of the music. EG Warmer, fuller, faster, leaner, even if the detail levels / soundstage are similar.

Ambrose

I need to get a good digital cable first to connect the SB touch to the rDAC...but I guess is not a major expense! Now you got me curios I will try this as well! Please keep me posted on some of the testing you are doing as well!
I started implementing some of the stuff you can read on that website, mainly the software and touch configuration for now, didn't change anything in the firware yet!
 

acalex

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nads said:
What have I been saying all the time? ;)

Just a question on NAS...any NAS will allow to install the SB Server application? I want to be able to listen to the music stored on a NAS with my pc switched off as well.
Thanks a lot
 
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acalex said:
Just a question on NAS...any NAS will allow to install the SB Server application? I want to be able to listen to the music stored on a NAS with my pc switched off as well.

er..no. Been there, tried it, played around a fair bit. The SB server is quite hungry in terms of CPU and memory, and the low end NAS units are not really up to the job. Add to that, that you'll either have to get down and dirty with the operating system or use a "hacked" BIOS in order to load the SBS software. I have a Bufallo LinkStation live 2TB NAS, and whilst there is a hacked firmware available that has the SBS software added, it just didnt work at anything like the performance I was wanting when it came to indexing the library and feeding the music library info to the Touch. I gave up and installed the SBS software on my Dell Studio laptop running Windows 7, using FLAC files converted from lossless WMA which was indexed and album art added using Windows Media Player .
 

daveg56

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Thanks Dr Lodge, some good info.

Got my SBT yesterday, initially impressed but struggling to get it to discover my music files on an attached 1TB USB drive without crashing, though there is only about 40GB of data. The local SBS crashes after discovering all the files when its trying to build it's database.

There is a lot of information on the SB forums which I'm trawling through, but I'm actually wondering whether the local SBS is a bit too lightweight and struggling to deal with large hard drives. Will try and install SBS on my laptop, but I didn't really want to have to have a PC involved.

Anyone successfully using a large NAS device?
 

acalex

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Dr Lodge said:
er..no. Been there, tried it, played around a fair bit. The SB server is quite hungry in terms of CPU and memory, and the low end NAS units are not really up to the job. Add to that, that you'll either have to get down and dirty with the operating system or use a "hacked" BIOS in order to load the SBS software. I have a Bufallo LinkStation live 2TB NAS, and whilst there is a hacked firmware available that has the SBS software added, it just didnt work at anything like the performance I was wanting when it came to indexing the library and feeding the music library info to the Touch. I gave up and installed the SBS software on my Dell Studio laptop running Windows 7, using FLAC files converted from lossless WMA which was indexed and album art added using Windows Media Player .

Thanks for sharing this! I do not want to keep any pc involved...so for me this might be a big obstacle...I know some people managed to make it work with a NAS, hopefully they will advise...otherwise I am afraid I need to sell it on ebay and think about an alternative (maybe Sonos)
 

Mr. Iceman

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I've not had any real issues installing SBS on my Buffalo Link Station (LX-WXL) 2TB which is running in Raid 1 config. It serves happily both my SBT upstairs (wirelessly) and M-CR603 downstairs. Also streaming to two PS3s with no problem at all.
 

acalex

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Mr. Iceman said:
I've not had any real issues installing SBS on my Buffalo Link Station (LX-WXL) 2TB which is running in Raid 1 config. It serves happily both my SBT upstairs (wirelessly) and M-CR603 downstairs. Also streaming to two PS3s with no problem at all.

Not issues of performance at all? Good to know... :)
 

lesmallett

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I use a NAS with my Squeezebox Touch. All QNAP's NAS's work simply with the Squeezebox Server, even my 5 year old one runs smoothly.

I use an ethernet switch between it, the touch and the Wireless router as routers are meant to add noise. Works very well.
 

Crocodile

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daveg56 said:
I'm actually wondering whether the local SBS is a bit too lightweight and struggling to deal with large hard drives. Will try and install SBS on my laptop, but I didn't really want to have to have a PC involved.
It's undoubtedly not up to the job IMO.

Something often overlooked on the PC front is that the Touch sends a Wake on Lan magic packet to the server when it's brought out of standby. So as long as your network card supports WOL, you can set the PC to sleep after a given period of inactivity & the Touch will wake it up when you want to play music. That's how I have my Windows Home Server configured & it works a treat.
 

acalex

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lesmallett said:
I use a NAS with my Squeezebox Touch. All QNAP's NAS's work simply with the Squeezebox Server, even my 5 year old one runs smoothly.

I use an ethernet switch between it, the touch and the Wireless router as routers are meant to add noise. Works very well.

This one do you think would work fine? QNAP TS-212 Turbo Nas

I can get on amazon.fr for reasonable amount of money...

EDIT: Actually...for 200 eur I can get the Buffalo LSV1 Link Station Pro, with 1.6GHz Cpu and 256Mb DDR3 and 76Mb/s of transfer speed...it actually looks quite nice also
 

tino

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I've tried the on-board server and it didn't work out very well. It too ages to index a 750GB disk, so I gave up in the end. The hosted Squeezebox server option is the better route. I use a low power laptop as the server, with WOL to save power (WOL also works over wireless). If you are looking for standalone NAS servers, make sure you check their compatibility with the SBT, and check out the noise ratings ... most servers have fans, so if it is going to be in the same room as your hifi, make sure you get a super quiet one, or one that is fanless even (but still up to the job e.g. Excito B3).
 

acalex

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tino said:
I've tried the on-board server and it didn't work out very well. It too ages to index a 750GB disk, so I gave up in the end. The hosted Squeezebox server option is the better route. I use a low power laptop as the server, with WOL to save power (WOL also works over wireless). If you are looking for standalone NAS servers, make sure you check their compatibility with the SBT, and check out the noise ratings ... most servers have fans, so if it is going to be in the same room as your hifi, make sure you get a super quiet one, or one that is fanless even (but still up to the job e.g. Excito B3).

Not sure the Excito is worth the 120 eur more...the Buffalo has better CPU (1.6Ghz vs 1.2GHz)...is the SBS easy to install on a Buffalo? Which OS is on the Buffalo?
 

nads

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acalex said:
nads said:
What have I been saying all the time? ;)

Just a question on NAS...any NAS will allow to install the SB Server application? I want to be able to listen to the music stored on a NAS with my pc switched off as well.
Thanks a lot

i run a couple of r

Netgear NASs and an LG. Netger come with SBS pre installed and I recommend changing the memory from 256 to 1Gb.
 

acalex

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nads said:
acalex said:
nads said:
What have I been saying all the time? ;)

Just a question on NAS...any NAS will allow to install the SB Server application? I want to be able to listen to the music stored on a NAS with my pc switched off as well.
Thanks a lot

i run a couple of r

Netgear NASs and an LG. Netger come with SBS pre installed and I recommend changing the memory from 256 to 1Gb.

Every netgear NAS has SBS pre-installed? Is it easy to change the memory (is it a normal memory RAM memory btw)?

Thanks
 

acalex

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OK, just bought a Ready Nas Ultra 2, 1,8GHz and 1GB Ram....up to 4Tb. This has Itunes server, SB server and Sonos application installed on it. Hopefully it will be a good choice...was 50% off normal price, bought for 150 eur!
 
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I use a Readynas ultra 2.

Works great, and very quick. Upgrading "Logitech media server" is a PITA, but not difficult. (You have to uninstall, clean, install, clean) - all the instructions are given though, it just takes 10 mins or so.

Also, It's worth setting up the remote option. That way you can access your NAS from anywhere in the world...
 

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