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The new C.A.P.S. v3 spec is out - now different four server builds


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#1 stuarth

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Posted 05 December 2012 - 02:18 PM

In other words, the third iteration of the Computer Audiophile Pocket Server

http://www.computera...3-introduction/

Differences between v3 designs are in areas such as ease of assembly, expansion capability, size, sound quality, computing power, and cost.



#2 Ozcall

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Posted 05 December 2012 - 04:23 PM

Ta

An open mind is a good starting point.

Except speakers where Gale 401A's beat all :)


#3 cazzesman

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Posted 07 December 2012 - 08:29 PM

http://www.computera...-s-v3-topangas/

1 of 4 up and about.

Regards Cazzesman

System - CAPS (Lagoon 128g SS HD + Sotm USB Card) + Synology NAS DS411 Slim - JRiver 18 - Elijah Isolate USB Cable - Audiophilleo 2 + pure battery power - RCA Direct into NAD C390DD (set to dual preout) into SGR CX4F Speakers.     (2 x Aqvox Low Noise Power Supply , Ear Science Power Box) - WDLive for TV and Movies - Yamaha DVD S1700.


#4 cazzesman

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Posted 13 December 2012 - 09:58 AM

2 of 4 up

http://www.computeraudiophile.com/

Regards Cazzesman

Edited by cazzesman, 13 December 2012 - 09:58 AM.

System - CAPS (Lagoon 128g SS HD + Sotm USB Card) + Synology NAS DS411 Slim - JRiver 18 - Elijah Isolate USB Cable - Audiophilleo 2 + pure battery power - RCA Direct into NAD C390DD (set to dual preout) into SGR CX4F Speakers.     (2 x Aqvox Low Noise Power Supply , Ear Science Power Box) - WDLive for TV and Movies - Yamaha DVD S1700.


#5 stuarth

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Posted 14 December 2012 - 05:00 AM

2 of 4 up

http://www.computeraudiophile.com/

Regards Cazzesman


This one includes the option of a battery-powered PSU from Red Wine Audio - http://redwineaudio....black_lightning

#6 Robert H

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Posted 19 December 2012 - 02:35 PM

And another: http://www.computera...-p-s-v3-carbon/

#7 fireone

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Posted 19 December 2012 - 11:32 PM

I misinterpreted Connaker's intentions with CAPS 3 when he announced a new design was on its way back in October.

I was anticipating (and wishing for) an analysis of 4 different designs as in something like a P8 Z77 board / i7 cpu vs. an AMD based board /CPU vs . the dn2800mt vs. MAC

An exploration like that of 4 substantially different designs would have been a super excellent Xmas present. :thumb:

Edited by fireone, 19 December 2012 - 11:37 PM.

CAPS 2 type server /PPang v1 USB card / DAC NAD M51 /Amps: Rotel 1066 / Speakers : Linkwitz Orions + Linkwitz 521


#8 fireone

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Posted 19 December 2012 - 11:50 PM

What might be included in version 4 of CAPS 3 ?

I'm going to punt on V4 having the Adnaco USB interface instead of the SOtM card

and a different enclosure to allow for an IR control mechanism

Edited by fireone, 19 December 2012 - 11:51 PM.

CAPS 2 type server /PPang v1 USB card / DAC NAD M51 /Amps: Rotel 1066 / Speakers : Linkwitz Orions + Linkwitz 521


#9 stuarth

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Posted 21 December 2012 - 10:17 AM

What might be included in version 4 of CAPS 3 ?


Chris C dropped some hints in his intro article where he said

4. CAPS v3 Zuma $1,535 This is the higher power server many readers have asked for over the last couple years.


Higher power likely means that the Atom on-board CPU exits the picture.

My bet is that Zuma will use a different mainboard and discrete CPU, probably a power-efficient Intel Core i5T.
I reckon he'll be using heat pipes to connect said CPU to heatsinks on a HTPC case like the Streacom FC8 http://quietpc.co.nz/st-fc8-evo

This means a more complicated build involving CPU install with thermal paste etc - but those wanting to avoid that can buy a completed unit from Small Green Computer.

Still thinking about my options for my next server build - but the lower powered versions of CAPS v3 would meet my needs.

#10 fireone

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Posted 21 December 2012 - 03:32 PM

My bet is that Zuma will use a different mainboard and discrete CPU, probably a power-efficient Intel Core i5T.


It would be great if he did.

One other prediction: even more expensive power supply.

He may have revealed the results of his testing. I think I read in the CAPS 3 v3 " Carbon" write up that this was his preferred server.
out of the 4 .

We really need a PC/MAC website and forum of the sort that gamers have, like this:

http://hardocp.com/

where testers are regularly benchmarking new hardware and software for a designated purpose.

Edited by fireone, 21 December 2012 - 05:43 PM.

CAPS 2 type server /PPang v1 USB card / DAC NAD M51 /Amps: Rotel 1066 / Speakers : Linkwitz Orions + Linkwitz 521


#11 firedog

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Posted 22 December 2012 - 10:29 PM

Yes, I think the Zuma version is for users who wanted a PC capable of DSP Room Correction, 8 GB of RAM or more (he already said it will be based on Win8 64bit), etc. But his personal preference for version 3 Carbon may simply be the result of him having no need for the more powerful server in his setup, and not have anything directly to do with the sound quality.

System (in small home office): GIK Acoustics Room Treatments>Tranquil Fanless PC with Windows 7(Dual Core Atom Board, Sonore External Power Supply)>FW to Mytek 192 DSD Stereo DAC(as pre & DAC) Odyssey Kismet (Khartago Case) Custom Amp>Devore Gibbon Nines. Also Squeezebox Touch slaved to an Empirical Audio Pace Car>Additional components: a standard SB Touch; Squeezebox Boom. Dual 506, Ortofon M20 (used only for recording vinyl) MF X-DAC3;MF X-150 Amp; ClassDaudio SDS-470 amp; previously owned KRK Ergo.


#12 cazzesman

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Posted 28 December 2012 - 08:40 AM

Zuma up.

Regards Cazzesman

System - CAPS (Lagoon 128g SS HD + Sotm USB Card) + Synology NAS DS411 Slim - JRiver 18 - Elijah Isolate USB Cable - Audiophilleo 2 + pure battery power - RCA Direct into NAD C390DD (set to dual preout) into SGR CX4F Speakers.     (2 x Aqvox Low Noise Power Supply , Ear Science Power Box) - WDLive for TV and Movies - Yamaha DVD S1700.


#13 fireone

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Posted 29 December 2012 - 10:31 AM

stuarth,

Well done .your predictions were right on the money.

CAPS 2 type server /PPang v1 USB card / DAC NAD M51 /Amps: Rotel 1066 / Speakers : Linkwitz Orions + Linkwitz 521


#14 cazzesman

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Posted 29 December 2012 - 08:57 PM

I've gone with buying parts for the Lagoon with a Synology 411slim Nas. I already had a Sotm Pcie and an AP2 so I'm excited to hear how it all goes.

Regards Cazzesman

System - CAPS (Lagoon 128g SS HD + Sotm USB Card) + Synology NAS DS411 Slim - JRiver 18 - Elijah Isolate USB Cable - Audiophilleo 2 + pure battery power - RCA Direct into NAD C390DD (set to dual preout) into SGR CX4F Speakers.     (2 x Aqvox Low Noise Power Supply , Ear Science Power Box) - WDLive for TV and Movies - Yamaha DVD S1700.


#15 stuarth

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Posted 30 December 2012 - 09:33 AM

stuarth,

Well done .your predictions were right on the money.

Thanks, fireone. I also predicted that the world would not end on Dec 21st when the Mayan calendar rolled into a new cycle, and that also seems to have been on the money ; )

Comments on the Zuma build suggest that some are already running into problems with getting correct length of heatpipes to match CPU position in the case. As Chris says, not for the novice buiilder.
I think Cazzesman has chosen well with the Lagoon server, will be interested to hear how that goes.

#16 cazzesman

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Posted 03 January 2013 - 07:07 PM

All the parts for the Lagoon finally arrived.  It all went together pretty well, even for a novice PC builder like myself.   Very Novice.    :(      I borrowed a Screen, Keyboard, mouse and external CD Drive that runs via USB from work and the new Windows 8pro loaded without a hitch.    I have run out of time at the moment but on Friday evening and Saturday I will hopefully have JRiver V18 loaded as well as some other software.   Still waiting on the Synology NAS to arrive.   Slowly, slowly.  :thumb:

 

Regards Cazzesman


System - CAPS (Lagoon 128g SS HD + Sotm USB Card) + Synology NAS DS411 Slim - JRiver 18 - Elijah Isolate USB Cable - Audiophilleo 2 + pure battery power - RCA Direct into NAD C390DD (set to dual preout) into SGR CX4F Speakers.     (2 x Aqvox Low Noise Power Supply , Ear Science Power Box) - WDLive for TV and Movies - Yamaha DVD S1700.


#17 k3here

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Posted 03 January 2013 - 07:50 PM

All the parts for the Lagoon finally arrived.  

 

Regards Cazzesman

 

Hi Cazzesman

Interested to know where you sourced the parts. Did you use the links Chris C provided or did you try to replace with local sources to keep freight costs down?

 

cheers



#18 cazzesman

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Posted 03 January 2013 - 09:01 PM

I got the Case, Sotm riser, power supply and MBoard from the US store Chris linked.    Sotm Pcie I had already.   Win8 pro 32bit and SSD 840pro from my local MSY.     The Ram was the tricky bit.    Mushkin isn't sold in Australia.     I tried to source something local because the recommended supplier didn't freight to Oz.    I asked alot of people via numerous emails to recommend a suitable replacement but basically got no replies I felt like trusting.   

 

Eventually I just got the recommended Mushkin sent out by a 3rd party.     So the $20 Ram cost me $35.   A day after I placed the Ram order a guy replied to an email and said 'Oh just use the local $18 Corsair Model #### it should work okay'.  Such is life.  

 

With delivery of the parts I ended up saving myself $280 from having the same Pre built Green PC (less the Sotm Pcie) posted out.      The Green PC was going to cost $90 to post out.  

 

Regards Cazzesman


System - CAPS (Lagoon 128g SS HD + Sotm USB Card) + Synology NAS DS411 Slim - JRiver 18 - Elijah Isolate USB Cable - Audiophilleo 2 + pure battery power - RCA Direct into NAD C390DD (set to dual preout) into SGR CX4F Speakers.     (2 x Aqvox Low Noise Power Supply , Ear Science Power Box) - WDLive for TV and Movies - Yamaha DVD S1700.


#19 Robert H

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Posted 03 January 2013 - 09:43 PM

Yeah I am going to build myself something very similar to the Topanga. Have most of the parts already, just need the case and psu.

 

Components list is as follows:

Case: Modello ITX 288 - $140p

Mobo: Intel DN2800MT - $125p

RAM: Corsair SODIM DDR3 1066 4GB - $22pp

SSD: Samsung 830 64gb (already had it)

Network Card: ASUS USB-N13 Wireless Pro N USB Adaptor (again not sure if this will be the best but I am giving it a go) - $29pp

Power Supply: A random one off eBay (need to double check the specs before I buy it) - $20p

 

I much prefer the looks and size of the ITX 288 case, plus it is made in Italy which is cool. Out of everything the case is the thing I am most excited about. I might add the SOtM card down the track but I need to get myself a good DAC first. I will also run Windows 7 and most likely J River, but I am going to check out some other players like J Play first. My FLAC collection will be hooked up via eSata (already have it too). Would love a NAS but my listening room is so far away from my router and I do not really want to run cables.


Edited by Robert H, 03 January 2013 - 09:45 PM.


#20 cazzesman

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Posted 03 January 2013 - 10:17 PM

My router will be 10 metres from the mini PC and Synology 411slim NAS.  I had 1 port left on the router so I purchased an 8 port network switch and 2 x 15 metre Cat5e cables.  Radio Parts in Melbourne were cheap as chips.    When I renovated the lounge room last year a new floor was laid.  Once the old floor was ripped up I ran 2 runs of 75mil pvc pipe from end to end, hanging under the floor joists, and up inside the wall cavity to outlets about the skirts.  I put in some pull strings so hopefully pulling the Cat5e won't be tooooooo dramatic.

 

Regards Cazzesman


Edited by cazzesman, 03 January 2013 - 10:17 PM.

System - CAPS (Lagoon 128g SS HD + Sotm USB Card) + Synology NAS DS411 Slim - JRiver 18 - Elijah Isolate USB Cable - Audiophilleo 2 + pure battery power - RCA Direct into NAD C390DD (set to dual preout) into SGR CX4F Speakers.     (2 x Aqvox Low Noise Power Supply , Ear Science Power Box) - WDLive for TV and Movies - Yamaha DVD S1700.


#21 stuarth

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Posted 04 January 2013 - 07:22 AM

Case: Modello ITX 288 - $140p

 

I much prefer the looks and size of the ITX 288 case, plus it is made in Italy which is cool. 

 

That is indeed a stylish case, and it has plenty of ventilation on the top panel - important for a fan-less server like this.



#22 Robert H

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Posted 04 January 2013 - 11:20 AM

That is indeed a stylish case, and it has plenty of ventilation on the top panel - important for a fan-less server like this.

 

And apparently the button on the front of the silver model is in fact silver, and not blue as it looks in the photo. :thumb:



#23 cazzesman

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Posted 05 January 2013 - 11:48 AM

Still just chipping away.  Jriver installed without drama - V18.  Fidelizer software installed.   Something I did find both amusing and annoying was the state of my music collection.     I've had it split over 2 HDD's on my main PC running into JRMC V17.   It is 85% flac with the rest Mp3 @ 320.  Anything below 320 I have now deleted.    I found I had multiple copies of CD's between the HDD's.    I also had both flac and wav versions owing to fact that my car only plays wav Cd's hence some conversions were required.   

 

I copied all the music onto a 2 gig external HDD and started the clean up.  3 hours later I had cut the files down from 407gig to 314gig.  So I'm thinking my new Synology NAS 411slim that can store 4 x 1tb HDD's should do the trick for a few years atleast.     

 

After lunch the testing will begin :thumb:

 

Regards Cazzesman


System - CAPS (Lagoon 128g SS HD + Sotm USB Card) + Synology NAS DS411 Slim - JRiver 18 - Elijah Isolate USB Cable - Audiophilleo 2 + pure battery power - RCA Direct into NAD C390DD (set to dual preout) into SGR CX4F Speakers.     (2 x Aqvox Low Noise Power Supply , Ear Science Power Box) - WDLive for TV and Movies - Yamaha DVD S1700.


#24 h2oxide

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Posted 05 January 2013 - 12:17 PM

Interesting but why wouldn't one just buy this http://quietpc.com.au/sys-fc5-z77

rather than this http://shop.smallgre...-CAPS3-Zuma.htm

 

Yes they use different PSU's and the latter has a soundcard but surely using the former; efficiently cooled, more powerful PC with an AP2 paired alongside a nice DAC would make little-to-no difference audibly than the latter.


Edited by h2oxide, 05 January 2013 - 12:24 PM.

Source: Audiophilleo2 & PurePower, Audio-gd Reference 7.1 Hifi: Plinius Hautonga, Dynaudio Focus 160 Headfi: Violectric HPA V200, Audeze LCD-2


#25 John H. Darko

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Posted 05 January 2013 - 05:16 PM

Interesting but why wouldn't one just buy this http://quietpc.com.au/sys-fc5-z77
rather than this http://shop.smallgre...-CAPS3-Zuma.htm
 
Yes they use different PSU's and the latter has a soundcard but surely using the former; efficiently cooled, more powerful PC with an AP2 paired alongside a nice DAC would make little-to-no difference audibly than the latter.


To add to that: if you use an ifi usbpower to run the AP2, then you don't have to worry about mobo and psu (electrical) noise.

Editor/Publisher, Digital Audio Review.  


#26 cazzesman

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Posted 05 January 2013 - 06:14 PM

I use the Aqvox Low Noise PS for the AP2 and a external wall wart for the Sotm.   I have just been testing between the external wall wart and the internal power config for the Sotm and the sound is noticeable cleaner and precise with the external wall wart.

 

Lagoon up and going at the moment with some flac tracks loaded onto the internal SSD HDD.    After listening to Adele and Eric Clapton Unplugged even my wife said there was improvement in clarity and precision over the previous setup.    Still some tweaking to go with JRMC EQ.   The Fidelizer software hasn't been used as yet and the screen, mouse and keyboard are still hanging off the Unit.    So far I very happy with the SQ and setup.   I can now use Wasapi Event whereas on my main PC it would only work on Wasapi. 

 

Regards Cazzesman


Edited by cazzesman, 05 January 2013 - 06:15 PM.

System - CAPS (Lagoon 128g SS HD + Sotm USB Card) + Synology NAS DS411 Slim - JRiver 18 - Elijah Isolate USB Cable - Audiophilleo 2 + pure battery power - RCA Direct into NAD C390DD (set to dual preout) into SGR CX4F Speakers.     (2 x Aqvox Low Noise Power Supply , Ear Science Power Box) - WDLive for TV and Movies - Yamaha DVD S1700.


#27 h2oxide

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Posted 05 January 2013 - 07:48 PM

To add to that: if you use an ifi usbpower to run the AP2, then you don't have to worry about mobo and psu (electrical) noise.

 

If you meant using batt power, I'm an idiot. Straight from their site

 

Much of what you don’t like about “digital” ultimately relates to electromagnetic noise in all its various forms. Computers, appliances, mobile phones, TVs—just about everything in the modern world that runs on electricity—create an abundance of random and patterned noise. This electronic “hash” travels through the air, household and system wiring to wreak havoc on even the best audio electronics. Noise gremlins are everywhere, making life difficult for sensitive clocks, DACs, and analog circuits. The PurePower provides the ultimate in clean power to those ciscuits that matter: the output stage and clocks. It makes Audiophilleo1 and Audiophilleo2 sound quality highly independent of computer source and USB cable used. Don't invest in partial solutions like expensive USB cables or PCI USB cards. The PurePower is THE solution to get the absolute best sound from any computer.

 

 

How did I not think of that? Ah well I s'pose that good news for us using the PurePower unit/aftermarket batt powered options


Edited by h2oxide, 05 January 2013 - 07:49 PM.

Source: Audiophilleo2 & PurePower, Audio-gd Reference 7.1 Hifi: Plinius Hautonga, Dynaudio Focus 160 Headfi: Violectric HPA V200, Audeze LCD-2


#28 John H. Darko

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Posted 05 January 2013 - 07:57 PM

I meant this:  http://www.ifi-audio.com/en/iUSB.html  :)


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#29 h2oxide

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Posted 05 January 2013 - 08:06 PM

Pity my DAC doesn't have USB. How would this unit compare (real-world performance) to the PurePower? I can't imagine it making any diff sonically to the ears but they have made it look mighty impressive.

 

EDIT I think my brain is mush today. The unit would power the AP2 regardless of if you're DAC has USB

DAC>AP2>(A-B USB)iFi iUSBPower>PC, right?


Edited by h2oxide, 05 January 2013 - 08:19 PM.

Source: Audiophilleo2 & PurePower, Audio-gd Reference 7.1 Hifi: Plinius Hautonga, Dynaudio Focus 160 Headfi: Violectric HPA V200, Audeze LCD-2


#30 cazzesman

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Posted 06 January 2013 - 08:06 AM

For those interested on some more feedback on the Lagoon.      I eventually settled in for some more precise listening with the 24/96 version of Porcupine Tree's - Lightbulb Sun. I have heard this CD 50 times atleast and today I just kept hearing stuff I had never heard before.

Instruments/vocals were crystal clear and 'oh so' precisely pinpoint in Depth and soundstage. Drummer Harrison never sounded so good, bouncing all over every track. Everything just seemed to snap into focus and I suspect all the old favorite Albums will be on high rotation in due course.

I'm also happy that I gave it a go to put my own Lagoon together. I had a few little hiccups along the way but it was a great learning curve for my first PC build and install.

Regards Cazzesman


System - CAPS (Lagoon 128g SS HD + Sotm USB Card) + Synology NAS DS411 Slim - JRiver 18 - Elijah Isolate USB Cable - Audiophilleo 2 + pure battery power - RCA Direct into NAD C390DD (set to dual preout) into SGR CX4F Speakers.     (2 x Aqvox Low Noise Power Supply , Ear Science Power Box) - WDLive for TV and Movies - Yamaha DVD S1700.