Best Music from pc

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  • 08-17-2010, 03:00 AM
    chrisbasnett
    Best Music from pc
    Hi All,

    I've been looking at getting a decent audio system for use with my pc, (kind of a gift to myself!).

    I've been looking around and my research so far has pointed at getting a Marantz PM6003 Amplifier along with a pair of Wharfedale Diamond 10.1 speakers.

    Will I need an aditional sound card for my pc to go with these/any better suggestions, got a budget of around 400 but I am looking for the best value setup as opposed to the most expensive.

    I would value any advise that you could offer.

    Thanks
  • 08-17-2010, 04:44 AM
    Feanor
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by chrisbasnett
    Hi All,

    I've been looking at getting a decent audio system for use with my pc, (kind of a gift to myself!).

    I've been looking around and my research so far has pointed at getting a Marantz PM6003 Amplifier along with a pair of Wharfedale Diamond 10.1 speakers.

    Will I need an aditional sound card for my pc to go with these/any better suggestions, got a budget of around 400 but I am looking for the best value setup as opposed to the most expensive.

    I would value any advise that you could offer.

    Thanks

    Frankly, there are many different ways to attach computer to an amplfier. Most options fall into one of these catergories:
    • You basic option -- connect the 'Speaker (or headphone) Out' on you motherboard or built-in sound card to and adaptor and hence RCA cables, to your amp..
    • Up grade your built-in sound to a higher grade sound card and proceed as above.
    • Some built-in or after-market sound cards have a digital output, (optical or coax): connect this the 'Digital In' of an AV receiver.
    • As above, except to an external DAC and hence via RCA cables to your amp.
    • Via USB from your compter to an external DAC with USB input, hence to via RCA to your amp.
    • Similar to the last, but via USB to an external sound card or DAC that is capable of asynchronous USB connection -- such units have custom drivers that might reduce jitter or othewise improve the sound.
    The most popular today, (other than the first above), is probably a USB-connected DAC. The last mentioned is the best in concept though not necessarily in practice; also a bit more complex and expensive.

    What will make more difference than any of the above is listening to higher resolution files, e.g. lossless or at least 320 kbps MP3 versus the commonly downloaded 128 kbps.