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Thread: Best music software?

  1. #21
    Addicted to Best! Pb Blimp's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by asiufy View Post
    I've tried a few, and the best bang for the buck is the Innuos line. Roon Core, enough CPU power to do DSP with Roon, but it won't do HQplayer.
    Alex, Any news on what they are bringing to replace the SE?
    Paul

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  2. #22
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    Paul,

    All I can say is that it'll come out soon... I'll likely have it for THE Show in June.


    cheers,
    Alex
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  3. #23
    I'm still a JRiver user (Jriver 24 64bit - as I also use MathAudio Room EQ), thought about foobar2000, they have a MathAudio Room EQ plugin for free - but alas, I've already paid for the Windows vst version. I love Jriver myself. I guess I love the ability to tweak it to my taste. Now I'm running a separate NAS server located in another room that feeds my HTPC, which feeds my DAC (Burson Vivid op-amps), to my prepro (Denon x4300H). The HTPC is windows based, while the NAS is a FreeBSD based program called Nas4free.

  4. #24
    Addicted to Best! sbo6's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by astrostar59 View Post
    What is general opinion on Roon sound quality? I have used Audirvana+ for 5 years and updated each time a new version came out. I changed DACs 2 weeks ago, and my new DAC is more resolving of my server (Mac Mini with Uptone Audio MMK, LPS, SSD, 8 meg RAM feeding USB to my DAC. It sounds fantastic, but it got me thinking.

    So I spent all day on trying Amarra, HQ player, PureMusic, then lastly Roon. Audirvana+ is still ahead of all of these except Roon. This surprised me. I tried Roon about 18 months ago and it was nothing special. That has changed IMO.

    I don't upsample, and feed my NOS DAC resident rate. Swopping between A+ and Roon on select tracks, they sound very similar, closer than the rest of the bunch. But A+ has a digital sound to it, a very slight coarseness that clings to the treble region, most noticeable on female vocals for example. This may not apply to all setups, but that is what I am hearing on my system.

    And this absolute absence of hash or treble grain brings a more realistic and relaxing musical experience. It is super subtle, and I notice it most on my LCD4s, but it is hard to ignore it. This is great, a very cheap upgrade. Also the Roon interface is first rate, better than all the others I have seen.

    Probably most folk on here have already tried Roon or use it already, but if not I would say have a go at it. It has grown up some!
    When you say you tried HQplayer, how was it configured? There are many filter, dither, upsample and conversion options which all yield different sound. In my experience, HQplayer solo is better than Roon interface -> HQPlayer which is better than JRiver. Recent SW updates have closed the gap between the Roon interface -> HQPlayer and HQplayer solo but HQplayer solo is still the best IME. I haven't tried Roon solo in a few months but when I did HQPlayer was definately better.
    3x20A circuits | PS Audio PPP | Music PC (DEQ, HQPlayer, Roon) | HDPLex LPSU -> UltraCap LPS-1 -> Sonore Ultrarendu D->D | Aqua Acoustic Quality Formula DAC | Purity Audio Silver Statement preamp | Wells Audio Innamorata amp (mid/tweet) | Musical Fidelity A3CR amp (woofers)| Usher BE20D speakers with GR Research upgrade | 2: JL Audio F113 subs | JPS Labs SC3 ICs + Aluminata/SC2 SCs | Stillpoints, BD cones | Custom birch rack | Fully treated + dedicated 2 channel room)

  5. #25
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    A good Ethernet Renderer will blow away ANY "Server" connected directly to the audio system (DAC). The reason for this is that servers, even the best of them, have a lot more going on and make a lot more noise than a good, low power, Ethernet Renderer. Get the big, powerful, music servers out of the audio system and move them far away, and just have a nice small, purpose built, ultra low noise, high end audio product rendering the digital audio for the DAC.
    Barrows

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  6. #26
    Addicted to Best! sbo6's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by barrows View Post
    A good Ethernet Renderer will blow away ANY "Server" connected directly to the audio system (DAC). The reason for this is that servers, even the best of them, have a lot more going on and make a lot more noise than a good, low power, Ethernet Renderer. Get the big, powerful, music servers out of the audio system and move them far away, and just have a nice small, purpose built, ultra low noise, high end audio product rendering the digital audio for the DAC.
    Sorry but I can't agree, and my stance is not based on comparing servers vs. renderers (BTW - I'm using an ultrarendu) it's based on the lack of evidence and over - simplification of your assessment. Just because servers, "have a lot more going on and make a lot more noise" doesn't mean the complexity limits performance and noise cannot be regulated / filtered. I would bet good money that a SGM will completely destroy my ultrarendu and LPSU.
    3x20A circuits | PS Audio PPP | Music PC (DEQ, HQPlayer, Roon) | HDPLex LPSU -> UltraCap LPS-1 -> Sonore Ultrarendu D->D | Aqua Acoustic Quality Formula DAC | Purity Audio Silver Statement preamp | Wells Audio Innamorata amp (mid/tweet) | Musical Fidelity A3CR amp (woofers)| Usher BE20D speakers with GR Research upgrade | 2: JL Audio F113 subs | JPS Labs SC3 ICs + Aluminata/SC2 SCs | Stillpoints, BD cones | Custom birch rack | Fully treated + dedicated 2 channel room)

  7. #27
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    Nope, just not true. You can "believe" whatever you might want. But that does not make it true.

    A "music server" directly connected to the audio system presents the following problems:

    1. Multiple switching regulators internally which make tons of high frequency noise which is almost impossible to mitigate.
    2. A relatively high power processor which makes considerable high frequency noise and contaminates any ground it is referenced to.
    3. All the noise generated internally is shared to the other audio components via the AC line connection-the only possible way to avoid this problem is to power the server completely by batteries, which I did with my last ever music server, but batteries come with their own problems, although at least they do provide isolation for the AC line.
    4. Music storage devices, whether SSD or HDD, these are also very noisy and require substantial power to drive them, just another source of noise.

    There is nothing "magical" about SGM or Innuous, etc. which makes them immune to most, or all, of these problems. At Sonore we used to make custom music servers, long ago! Until we discovered that the best solution was removing all commercial grade computer gear from the vicinity of the audio system was the only way to eliminate its noise. Ethernet makes this possible. It is amusing to me now to see "new" music servers hit the market at ever increasing price points, using the approaches Sonore did in our servers years ago, but we have moved on.
    Barrows

    Product Design/Build Consultant with Sonore

    sonore.us

  8. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by barrows View Post
    A good Ethernet Renderer will blow away ANY "Server" connected directly to the audio system (DAC). The reason for this is that servers, even the best of them, have a lot more going on and make a lot more noise than a good, low power, Ethernet Renderer. Get the big, powerful, music servers out of the audio system and move them far away, and just have a nice small, purpose built, ultra low noise, high end audio product rendering the digital audio for the DAC.
    My experience has been the same and since I designed two virtually identical interfaces, one isolated XMOS USB and the other Ethernet, I have a valid comparison:

    https://www.audiocircle.com/index.php?topic=155232.0

    Not that you don't need to optimize things for Ethernet, because you do. It's just different things, including router/switch mods, cabling and playback software. These are easier and cheaper IMO than doing the same for USB.

    I still need USB in order to stream Amazon Prime music and other apps that use the computer audio settings.

    Steve N
    Empirical Audio
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  9. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by asiufy View Post
    Paul,

    All I can say is that it'll come out soon... I'll likely have it for THE Show in June.


    cheers,
    Alex
    I found Linn Kinsky/Minimserver/BubbleUPnP to beat all others including Roon (without HQplayer), Amarra, Jriver, Audirvana, Foobar2K and others. It works with DLNA devices.

    Steve N.
    Empirical Audio
    Steve Nugent, owner and designer
    Empirical Audio
    http://www.empiricalaudio.com
    Manufacturer of low-jitter digital interfaces and DAC's since 1996

    System:
    modded Router powered by Dynamo LPS -> 0.5m Platinum Wireworld CAT8 cable -> EMO EN-70e isolator -> 2.0m Platinum Wireworld CAT8 cable ->
    Empirical Audio Overdrive SX DAC with Ethernet interface ->
    Empirical Audio Final Drive analog transformer buffer ->
    Custom modded Arte Forma SET Due Volte monoblocks ->
    Vapor Audio Nimbus speakers

  10. #30
    Industry Expert Senior Member MtnHam's Avatar
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    No one seems to have commented on Roon's own dedicated servers, the Nucleus and Nucleus+.
    Comments?
    Tom
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