computer music server

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  • 04-08-2011, 09:33 PM
    harley .guy07
    computer music server
    Well I finally got my Fubar 2000 program set up and hooked my laptop up to my Digi link 3 to see what it sounded like and it sounds pretty good. Had to do some tweaking with the Fubar settings but otherwise not bad. I have a better usb cable on the way since I am using a cheaper belkin cable right now so I have not done any direct testing between the oppo running disks via coax digital and my laptop running usb to my digi link but I will say that if this cable improves things just a bit it will be a viable option when the need arises. It is different using a pc for your source. I think in the future if this really becomes something I get into I am going to build a dedicated tower system to run through my samsung led tv and have a higher end audio card with digital outs for audio since it is best anyway and to separate me using my laptop for this purpose since I use it for school all the time. But I ordered the cable anyway so I can make playlists off of Fubar and use it when I am hanging around the house and don't feel like changing disks once an hour. It took me a while to figure out the fubar program and how you have to link the playlist to the music. I have an external hard drive for backup and what not and I think I will just move music directly over to the laptop when I want to play it with fubar because the hard drive seems to not want to disengage after using it to play music form playlists. I am not sure why but it happened and I do not want to loose what I have on my hard drive just because I want to jam.
  • 04-14-2011, 04:03 AM
    Feanor
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by harley .guy07
    Well I finally got my Fubar 2000 program set up and hooked my laptop up to my Digi link 3 to see what it sounded like and it sounds pretty good. Had to do some tweaking with the Fubar settings but otherwise not bad. I have a better usb cable on the way since I am using a cheaper belkin cable right now so I have not done any direct testing between the oppo running disks via coax digital and my laptop running usb to my digi link but I will say that if this cable improves things just a bit it will be a viable option when the need arises. It is different using a pc for your source. I think in the future if this really becomes something I get into I am going to build a dedicated tower system to run through my samsung led tv and have a higher end audio card with digital outs for audio since it is best anyway and to separate me using my laptop for this purpose since I use it for school all the time. But I ordered the cable anyway so I can make playlists off of Fubar and use it when I am hanging around the house and don't feel like changing disks once an hour. It took me a while to figure out the fubar program and how you have to link the playlist to the music. I have an external hard drive for backup and what not and I think I will just move music directly over to the laptop when I want to play it with fubar because the hard drive seems to not want to disengage after using it to play music form playlists. I am not sure why but it happened and I do not want to loose what I have on my hard drive just because I want to jam.

    Congradulations, Harley. Looks like you're off to a good start.

    Foobar2000 is a great program in many respects. Not the least, it allows you to partly by-pass the Windows audio stack in the interest of getting a bit-perfect data stream to your computer's sound card or external DAC. With Windows Vista or 7 install the WASAPI component and specify it under the "Output" options.

    Foobar also permits extensive Album List and Playlist customizations -- unfortunately the customization process requires some text entry: it can't all be done point-and-click.

    Backing up your music file collection is just as important as any other data backups. You'd hate to have rerip hundreds of CDs. :( I'm not sure I entirely understand your issue with your external HD. But if you want play your music from the external drive, take your backups on a different one. I presume you are aware that you can control exactly where Foobar goes to find you music files: under Preferences > Media Library, you can specify as many directories as you like for where Foobar will look for music files, and the program will look in these and only these locations. (Furthermore, Foobar will constantly monitor these locations for changes, including new or deleted files, that you might have made.)

    I'm reasonably familiar with all basic Foobar operation, so ask me and I might be able to help.
  • 04-14-2011, 07:34 PM
    harley .guy07
    Wow the WASAPI add on really helped the output to my dac. I did not know it existed but also the fubar program I had loaded up was an older version so i upgraded it so I could use the add on. Now I am waiting on my higher end usb cable that is longer and much better made than the Belkin I have been using temporarily and I hope it will hop up the low end of the sound while smoothing out the highs since while it does sound good it just does not have the balance of my Oppo running through my dac with coax digital cable playing disks. I can hope that a better usb cable will help and then I can possibly in the future look to getting a small desktop pc to run as a media player in my system with a sound card with digital outputs plus it will be a more integrated part of my system than I can make my laptop since I use my laptop all the time for College and other projects. But if this upper level usb cable helps it will satisfy my need to make things easier when wanting to listen to a mixture of music without messing with changing disks all the time.
  • 04-15-2011, 03:43 AM
    Feanor
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by harley .guy07
    Wow the WASAPI add on really helped the output to my dac. I did not know it existed but also the fubar program I had loaded up was an older version so i upgraded it so I could use the add on. Now I am waiting on my higher end usb cable that is longer and much better made than the Belkin I have been using temporarily and I hope it will hop up the low end of the sound while smoothing out the highs since while it does sound good it just does not have the balance of my Oppo running through my dac with coax digital cable playing disks. I can hope that a better usb cable will help and then I can possibly in the future look to getting a small desktop pc to run as a media player in my system with a sound card with digital outputs plus it will be a more integrated part of my system than I can make my laptop since I use my laptop all the time for College and other projects. But if this upper level usb cable helps it will satisfy my need to make things easier when wanting to listen to a mixture of music without messing with changing disks all the time.

    Let us know how you like the upgraded USB cable.

    Pardon the pun, but there isn't much analogy between digital and analog cables. Technically, the improvement you'd hope from a better digital cable, USB or coax, is reduced jitter, and it isn't clear to me what range of frequencies reducing jitter will help the most. So your report will be interesting.

    According to specifications, USB cables must be under 15' (or 5 m). According to all reports, the shorter the USB cable, the better. Shorter the better is general rule with all cables, except with coax (S/PDIF) cables which I'm told ought to be very short, e.g. <1 foot, or quite long, i.e. >30 feet. Too much transmission line engineering for me, but apparently source-target impedance mismatches can cause signal reflections which in turn cause jitter depending on the distance covered. :22:
  • 04-15-2011, 07:44 AM
    harley .guy07
    Yeah I should get it on Saturday so I will get a chance to see how it works. I hope it does smooth out the highs and bring up the lows a little bit. I will play around with it and let you guys know the difference.
  • 04-15-2011, 04:06 PM
    hifi-freak
    I'm also interested on knowing the differences with a better usb cable...i'm thinking on buying a better one for my Dac/amp, if you notice improvements.
  • 04-18-2011, 12:42 PM
    harley .guy07
    Well the I got the cable Saturday morning and while it looks a lot better and the length is exactly what I wanted, the sound is better and the low end seems to be more prominent now and the high a little smoother but I still am not having the presentation as far as bass and smoothness on my Oppo player running coax digital to my dac to my ears. The difference is very slight and a lot of people would probably not notice it but to me it is there. I think within the next year or less I will be putting a desktop pc in there as a media server and a music server with a higher end sound card so most likely I will be switching to toslink or coax digital form that system since it will be more stationary and that Hope will make things better but I am pretty satisfied using my laptop right now.
  • 04-18-2011, 01:27 PM
    Feanor
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by harley .guy07
    Well the I got the cable Saturday morning and while it looks a lot better and the length is exactly what I wanted, the sound is better and the low end seems to be more prominent now and the high a little smoother but I still am not having the presentation as far as bass and smoothness on my Oppo player running coax digital to my dac to my ears. The difference is very slight and a lot of people would probably not notice it but to me it is there. I think within the next year or less I will be putting a desktop pc in there as a media server and a music server with a higher end sound card so most likely I will be switching to toslink or coax digital form that system since it will be more stationary and that Hope will make things better but I am pretty satisfied using my laptop right now.

    Actually I'm surprised you hear any diffenence at all with the new USB, though if it's shorter than the old one, that could be the reason.

    USB using standard Windows drivers is not the ideal method. There "asynchornous" USB devices that work better but require custom drivers. These new USB devices have become quite common but no doubt some are better than others.

    The other approach, as you mention, is a sound card with S/PDIF output. This is what I use. In my case an M-Audio Revolution 7.1, but there are lots of others. One favorably mentioned recently is the Asus Xonar Essence ST, here.
  • 04-18-2011, 02:43 PM
    harley .guy07
    Well like I said the difference between the USB cables in small and by most peoples perceptions unnoticeable. I think in the future the route you have took will be something I will be looking closely at.