Author Topic: What Does a More Expensive/‘Better’ Streamer Give Me?  (Read 10912 times)

Offline Nick B

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Re: What Does a More Expensive/‘Better’ Streamer Give Me?
« Reply #15 on: February 10, 2022, 09:46:30 PM »
"To me it is all about the music (yay, Tom!) and ultimate resolution became less important to me a few years ago when I discovered foot tapping trumping the top octave harmonic series.  I'm just not into audiophile delusion any longer. "

I am attempting to grasp what you are saying. Are you saying you decreased the highs in your system? May I ask
what method of reproducing the highs, full range or tweeter?

Or are some/many of the recordings themselves with too much top end, and therefore need taming? The mids are ok?

Or the music seems not natural across most if not all of the musical spectrum? (more than just the highs.) A little thin in the mids as well, sounds like a recording rather than being at the venue itself?

Or completely off, another meaning?

I am having trouble getting a grasp of what you are meaning.

Thanks and cheers

steve
It is simple, really.

Hi-rez does not meet my needs.  I prefer good old tried and true 44.1/16 Redbook through a very good NOS DAC without the phase shift from ragged brick wall filters.  As I have aged (and still keep going to the gun range) my hearing is not what it used to be.

The musicality of a good NOS DAC has always been my preference.  Add to this the fact that I have terrbytes of Redbook and I'm just a happy listener.

What I am having trouble reconciling is your hearing is not what it used to be due to gun shots, yet the highs in
high rez recordings is offending you. Just curious.

(For general public: Hi rez contains "info" above 20khz which can mess with the dynamics, attacks (rise time) etc.
(That is if the original material is recorded to higher frequencies.))

Anyway, I find the same principle with LPs. There is a recording pole approximately 50khz, which "stops" the gain. However, no one designs a counter pole in playback electronics. I realized this, and the frequency from Stanley
Lipshitz article.

I found out why no one adds the playback pole at 50khz when I installed it. The highs became unbearable to me. (I had always heard that recording engineers back in the day often over emphasized the highs for LPs due to the playback wear of the soft vinyl. This was a separate high frequency setting, not in the RIAA circuit.)

Anyway, I have no high rez recordings. I also use redbook and use Youtube premium, and my system sounds better than any other system I have ever heard over the decades, even systems using high rez. Maybe some day I should try high rez just to see.

cheers and all the best Dave.

steve

Steve,
As I recall, it was maybe two years ago or more when I last had my hearing tested. I was good up to about 14 kHz in both ears. Would you, or anyone else here, know if that is average or above average for my age? I just turned 71 recently.
Nick
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Offline steve

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Re: What Does a More Expensive/‘Better’ Streamer Give Me?
« Reply #16 on: February 11, 2022, 09:32:18 AM »
Quote
Steve,
As I recall, it was maybe two years ago or more when I last had my hearing tested. I was good up to about 14 kHz in both ears. Would you, or anyone else here, know if that is average or above average for my age? I just turned 71 recently.
Nick

I don't have exact figures Nick, not that versed, but the below graph indicate how average men's and women's
hearing is affected up to 8khz/65 years of age. I would say you are above average, depending upon the exact figures
you were given up to 14khz.

Cheers and great weekend.

steve
« Last Edit: February 11, 2022, 09:34:02 AM by steve »
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Offline Nick B

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Re: What Does a More Expensive/‘Better’ Streamer Give Me?
« Reply #17 on: February 11, 2022, 11:35:24 AM »
Quote
Steve,
As I recall, it was maybe two years ago or more when I last had my hearing tested. I was good up to about 14 kHz in both ears. Would you, or anyone else here, know if that is average or above average for my age? I just turned 71 recently.
Nick

I don't have exact figures Nick, not that versed, but the below graph indicate how average men's and women's
hearing is affected up to 8khz/65 years of age. I would say you are above average, depending upon the exact figures
you were given up to 14khz.

Cheers and great weekend.

steve

Thanks, Steve. That’s quite a difference between the men and the women. I have a theory as to why, but I’ll keep it to myself  :lol:
Nick
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Offline P.I.

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Re: What Does a More Expensive/‘Better’ Streamer Give Me?
« Reply #18 on: February 11, 2022, 04:50:14 PM »
I've been follwing this thread and me being me, it all comes down to what is the data being fed to the streamer, how does the streamer function and how good is the streamer?

Again:  me being me... if the streamer is not fed absolutely pristine power it does not matter what the brains in the streamer are.

Just sayin'...

Maybe I retired too soon  :rofl:
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Offline Nick B

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Re: What Does a More Expensive/‘Better’ Streamer Give Me?
« Reply #19 on: February 11, 2022, 11:35:36 PM »
I've been follwing this thread and me being me, it all comes down to what is the data being fed to the streamer, how does the streamer function and how good is the streamer?

Again:  me being me... if the streamer is not fed absolutely pristine power it does not matter what the brains in the streamer are.
 
Just sayin'...

Maybe I retired too soon  :rofl:

My $500 Auralic Mini streamer sounds quite good partly because it’s getting power from a $600 power supply. As to you retiring too soon, I think you sure earned that  :thumb: But I was wondering if you had given thought to still developing a few products here and there and then turning over the final prototype to your new partner/owner for the case work and remainder of the work in getting it ready for shipping.
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Offline P.I.

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Re: What Does a More Expensive/‘Better’ Streamer Give Me?
« Reply #20 on: February 12, 2022, 12:15:14 AM »
I've been follwing this thread and me being me, it all comes down to what is the data being fed to the streamer, how does the streamer function and how good is the streamer?

Again:  me being me... if the streamer is not fed absolutely pristine power it does not matter what the brains in the streamer are.
 
Just sayin'...

Maybe I retired too soon  :rofl:

My $500 Auralic Mini streamer sounds quite good partly because it’s getting power from a $600 power supply. As to you retiring too soon, I think you sure earned that  :thumb: But I was wondering if you had given thought to still developing a few products here and there and then turning over the final prototype to your new partner/owner for the case work and remainder of the work in getting it ready for shipping.

Nick.  My friend.   These things are in the works.  I'm retired.  I haven't stopped thinking  :thumb:
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Offline tmazz

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Re: What Does a More Expensive/‘Better’ Streamer Give Me?
« Reply #21 on: February 12, 2022, 10:00:34 PM »

Again:  me being me... if the streamer is not fed absolutely pristine power it does not matter what the brains in the streamer are.


Dave it's not you being you, it's you being 100% right.

In reality an amplifier doesn't really amplify anything. What it physically does is modulates a low voltage signal onto a higher voltage DC source. If done correctly the DC voltage from the power supply will vary in exactly the same way as the input signal, except with w higher peak to peak value.  Of course this only works if the higher voltage is pure DC. If there is any kind of noise that makes its way through the power supply and into the audio circuit, the higher voltage that gets modulated will be the DC plus the noise, making the noise a permanent part of the output signal. Power supply filtering can get out just so much and the best way to keep noise out of the DC is to reduce as much of it as possible from the input AC. The less that is present, the less problems that need to be address, resulting in cleaner DC to the audio circuits which in turn results in better SQ.

Basically, if you have noise on your B+ that noise will drive its way right to you speaker, if not in an audible way itself, it will at the very least cause the discontinuities between input and output that we commonly refer to as distortion.

Like the old computer saying goes, garbage in, garbage out.


I won't get banned for saying this....will I? 
« Last Edit: February 12, 2022, 10:03:18 PM by tmazz »
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Offline rollo

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Re: What Does a More Expensive/‘Better’ Streamer Give Me?
« Reply #22 on: February 13, 2022, 09:07:50 AM »
  A good reason to have a DC blocker in your conditioner.

charles
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Offline Nick B

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Re: What Does a More Expensive/‘Better’ Streamer Give Me?
« Reply #23 on: February 13, 2022, 01:18:27 PM »
 :clap:

Again:  me being me... if the streamer is not fed absolutely pristine power it does not matter what the brains in the streamer are.


Dave it's not you being you, it's you being 100% right.

In reality an amplifier doesn't really amplify anything. What it physically does is modulates a low voltage signal onto a higher voltage DC source. If done correctly the DC voltage from the power supply will vary in exactly the same way as the input signal, except with w higher peak to peak value.  Of course this only works if the higher voltage is pure DC. If there is any kind of noise that makes its way through the power supply and into the audio circuit, the higher voltage that gets modulated will be the DC plus the noise, making the noise a permanent part of the output signal. Power supply filtering can get out just so much and the best way to keep noise out of the DC is to reduce as much of it as possible from the input AC. The less that is present, the less problems that need to be address, resulting in cleaner DC to the audio circuits which in turn results in better SQ.

Basically, if you have noise on your :D B+ that noise will drive its way right to you speaker, if not in an audible way itself, it will at the  :thumb:very least cause the discontinuities between input and output that we commonly :thumb: refer to as distortion.

Like the old computer saying goes, garbage in, garbage out.


I won't get banned for saying this....will I? 

Hmmm, I can’t think of a good reason….yet!! ….and besides, you are such a prolific poster   :thumb:
« Last Edit: February 13, 2022, 01:20:37 PM by Nick B »
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Offline steve

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Re: What Does a More Expensive/‘Better’ Streamer Give Me?
« Reply #24 on: February 15, 2022, 09:36:57 PM »

Again:  me being me... if the streamer is not fed absolutely pristine power it does not matter what the brains in the streamer are.


Dave it's not you being you, it's you being 100% right.

In reality an amplifier doesn't really amplify anything. What it physically does is modulates a low voltage signal onto a higher voltage DC source. If done correctly the DC voltage from the power supply will vary in exactly the same way as the input signal, except with w higher peak to peak value.  Of course this only works if the higher voltage is pure DC. If there is any kind of noise that makes its way through the power supply and into the audio circuit, the higher voltage that gets modulated will be the DC plus the noise, making the noise a permanent part of the output signal. Power supply filtering can get out just so much and the best way to keep noise out of the DC is to reduce as much of it as possible from the input AC. The less that is present, the less problems that need to be address, resulting in cleaner DC to the audio circuits which in turn results in better SQ.

Basically, if you have noise on your B+ that noise will drive its way right to you speaker, if not in an audible way itself, it will at the very least cause the discontinuities between input and output that we commonly refer to as distortion.

Like the old computer saying goes, garbage in, garbage out.


I won't get banned for saying this....will I? 

Besides noise, you alluded to this as well Tom, to follow the input signal over an extremely wide frequency range.
And it has to be exact,,,,,,,,, which is why one perceives different brands/models to sound different. Common component specs don't mean a lot.

cheers

steve
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Offline Jack

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Re: What Does a More Expensive/‘Better’ Streamer Give Me?
« Reply #25 on: February 15, 2022, 10:05:23 PM »
The base answer the the OP's question has always been better power.  That's why from the time they were both introduced the Aries Mini was always the better unit compared to the same price Node.  The Mini has from the beginning had the option of easily adding a better outboard LPS which the Node didn't. I did it immediately as did most people.  In the end it's why the Mini was discontinued as with the addition of the LPS the Mini was close enough to their higher priced units that people weren't upgrading. Mine is still in service in a secondary system and will be until it dies. If you subtract the cost of the included free year of Tidal my unit cost me $350 plus the $109 for the TeraDak LPS. Neither has skipped a beat in six years on continuous use.
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Offline James Edward

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Re: What Does a More Expensive/‘Better’ Streamer Give Me?
« Reply #26 on: February 16, 2022, 01:17:25 PM »
I’ve been on the lam with personal issues since I first posted this- thank you for all the replies. And I owe Tmazz a call…
I just wanted to post and say that I’m digesting all that’s been written and appreciate the knowledge. In the middle of it all Dave posts that he’s modifying a Node; I’ll be following that for sure.
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Offline P.I.

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Re: What Does a More Expensive/‘Better’ Streamer Give Me?
« Reply #27 on: February 16, 2022, 02:47:55 PM »

I just wanted to post and say that I’m digesting all that’s been written and appreciate the knowledge. In the middle of it all Dave posts that he’s modifying a Node; I’ll be following that for sure.
Jim
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Offline rollo

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Re: What Does a More Expensive/‘Better’ Streamer Give Me?
« Reply #28 on: December 14, 2022, 09:19:41 AM »
Thank you all for the replies- I should have stated that this particular question is not gnawing at me in the same way as a cartridge upgrade is- https://www.audionervosa.com/index.php?topic=8385.0 I KNOW I can do better cartridge-wise.
I actually like the way the streaming sounds, though it does not sound as good as a CD playing through the same internal DAC of my player.
As usual, I find Tom’s advice to be a good, sober assessment. In fact, I’ve found some hi-res files too ‘microscopic’, drawing me away from the music; it’s enticing at first listen, then I feel like it’s an autopsy of the music. I’ve certainly not heard enough iterations of hi-res, nor do I profess to have golden ears, so I’m sure there’s much to learn.


   Jim a VG observation about streaming. Yes a better streamer will sound better. Better power supplies, circuits, etc. 

charles
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Offline HAL

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Re: What Does a More Expensive/‘Better’ Streamer Give Me?
« Reply #29 on: December 14, 2022, 10:25:03 AM »
Another problem is that not only are there external power supplies for motherboards, but they also have onboard switching supplies to manage the different voltages for CPU, memory, external logic interfaces etc.  You might make the external power supply quiet, but the onboard supplies are still driving everything.

This all goes back to the transient power nature of digital systems.  The lower the power needed by the logic, the lower the noise generated by the SMPS on the motherboard.  This is why I prefer small low power SBC's that have minimal onboard SMPS's. 

What also helps is using SMPS's that switch at higher than audio band frequencies.  That is why I use a GaN based SMPS to drive my Music Server. 

Another problem really comes when you are streaming, as some services like Qobuz take large CPU throuhput unlike music file playback with things like Foobar2000 and JRiver MC.  Smaller CPU's that are fine for file playback do not have the CPU power to stream using some services.  So now a higher power CPU with more current requirements is needed that creates more noise.

Always something.