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cazzesman

minidsp dirac live question

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I have Kii 3's running from CAPS Lagoon into mutec usb into Kii 3 via AES.   I'm thinking about putting a Minidsp DDRC-22D into the chain.     As the 22D doesn't have USB in, I would have to run the following.........

 

Caps - via usb cable into Mutec - via AES into 22D - via AES into the Kii 3's.    I have a UMIK already.  

 

Perhaps it is my 60 yr old ears but I was listening the other day and my wife commented that she thought it was abit harsh.     I thought it was okay.

 

I have set some adjustments on the Kii's top end and mid bass.    I was thinking the 22D was a simple way test the room and set up some curves.   I have a fair amount of room treatment at 1st reflections and rear corners.   I left the treatment in when I got the Kii's because I think it actually helped in the room.

 

Any thoughts anyone on the 22D in the Chain.

 

Regards Cazzesman 

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It is unlikely that the MiniDSP will produce a digital waveform which is as high quality as the Mutec USB interface.

 

Will this matter?   This depends on the jitter/noise rejection there is on the Kii digital input.

 

It is likely that Dirac Live will make a positive contribution to your sound, especially if you have a speaker and room which is already reasonably well behaved (this comment may seem like a "paradox" to some).

 

Will the sound be a step backwards due to the extra (lower quality) device in the signal path?    You should be able to try it easily.  Put the 22D in the signal path.   Also run a different digital connection directly from Mutec to Kii controller.    Ensure the gains of each different path are the same  (ie. that the same SPL comes out of the speaker).    Turn off all processing on the 22D.

 

Now you can switch back and forth (with the kii controller) while listening to music, and test whether the 2DD in the signal path is a step backwards.   

 

 

 

 

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Just be aware that all minidsp devices run internally at a fixed sample rate. In the case of the 22D that is 96kHz. That's fine if you're inputting 48 or 96k material, but any 44.1/88.2 etc material will be resampled. This is a relatively lossy process (not extreme, but there's no perfect way to do it) and when you're at the high end it may matter.  On the other hand, there's very limited information on the Kii's own internal DSP and there's a good chance they resample and only use one internal sample rate as well, in which case it depends on whether the resampling of the 22D is the equal of that in the Kiis. Unfortunately there's just too little information to know for sure. Probably the main concern is the isolation from noise coming out of the miniDSP device as the 22D is unlikely to have as "quiet" and low jitter output as a dedicated DAC. In that regard, the SHD studio is probably a better choice as it is -- at least according to minidsp -- their higher tier product.

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2 hours ago, Ittaku said:

Just be aware that all minidsp devices run internally at a fixed sample rate. In the case of the 22D that is 96kHz. That's fine if you're inputting 48 or 96k material, but any 44.1/88.2 etc material will be resampled. This is a relatively lossy process (not extreme, but there's no perfect way to do it) and when you're at the high end it may matter.  On the other hand, there's very limited information on the Kii's own internal DSP and there's a good chance they resample and only use one internal sample rate as well, in which case it depends on whether the resampling of the 22D is the equal of that in the Kiis. Unfortunately there's just too little information to know for sure. Probably the main concern is the isolation from noise coming out of the miniDSP device as the 22D is unlikely to have as "quiet" and low jitter output as a dedicated DAC. In that regard, the SHD studio is probably a better choice as it is -- at least according to minidsp -- their higher tier product.

I would not be worried about the SRC quality in this chip...  it is 128dB, so unless the gain structure is borked, it just a non-issue.

 

Electrical noise could be a problem... if something is sensitive to that.

 

.... but (as mentioned) the biggest potential issues is the clock of the miniDSP.   All signals (even 48 and 96khz) are sample rate converted to 96  ... and so they'll come out with the new clock.    What the other end makes of this, is the most important things .... as if it doesn't like a messy clock, then it's going to spew noise everywhere.     That being said, I expect the Kii to perform well there.

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Thanks folks,

 

The 44/96 issue is not an issue for me as i only use 44 or 96.   My system doesn't like 192 so i leave redbook at 44 and HD recordings at 96.    Any 192 i have gets resampled to 96.

 

ill give it all some thought.   I dont want to remove the mutes as i think it does a great job so the 22d after the mutec seems right to me.   

 

Appreciate your thoughts.

 

Regards Cazzesman

 

 

 

 

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With a Kii Three and a Mutec in the loop, I would not consider a miniDSP with Dirac Live.  Instead, suggest the DSpeaker X4 which I am surprised that Con  @Ittaku  has not mentioned or something from DEQX.  

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1 minute ago, Snoopy8 said:

With a Kii Three and a Mutec in the loop, I would not consider a miniDSP with Dirac Live.  Instead, suggest the DSpeaker X4 which I am surprised that Con  @Ittaku  has not mentioned or something from DEQX.  

Well yeah but it costs almost 10x as much as the 22D

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49 minutes ago, Ittaku said:

Well yeah but it costs almost 10x as much as the 22D

What he said. 😀😀

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Just had a quick look at your server. Looks like it is running Windows.

 

Dirac 2.0 software is coming soon and they may still be allowing users to try the early release for demo. With this you no longer need extra hardware and can make Dirac filters and load into Audrivana which is now supported by Windows too. I can't remember if Jriver is supported and when I spoke with them they said they would look into Roon support so hopefully this will become more common for everyone especially if they don't want to introduce more hardware.

 

Not sure what you think of Roon but you can also do room correction quite easily with the free REW software and load the filters into Roon. 

 

Good luck whatever you choose to do.

 

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18 minutes ago, Sir Suspended Zingmore said:

@cazzesman, the Kiis are extremely configurable (as you no doubt are aware). I’m just wondering what you expect Dirac to bring that the Kiis can’t already do for themselves?

They are configurable but only at 2 points really, aside from the boundary setting.      

 

The problem is actually assessing the room to know what tweeks need doing.       I can do it by ear to some extent but I would love to see what the room is doing.    I could use REW but that is a big learning curve.

 

I am in no hurry but i just thought if I got a second hand 22D i might give if a fly.    The 22D is such an easy plug and play solution in my system.    The SHD version with USB input could slide in between the CAPS/Mutec or the 22D with the AES could slide in after the Mutec.

 

Regards Cazzesman

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3 minutes ago, Bunno77 said:

Just had a quick look at your server. Looks like it is running Windows.

 

Dirac 2.0 software is coming soon and they may still be allowing users to try the early release for demo. With this you no longer need extra hardware and can make Dirac filters and load into Audrivana which is now supported by Windows too. I can't remember if Jriver is supported and when I spoke with them they said they would look into Roon support so hopefully this will become more common for everyone especially if they don't want to introduce more hardware.

 

Not sure what you think of Roon but you can also do room correction quite easily with the free REW software and load the filters into Roon. 

 

Good luck whatever you choose to do.

 

I'm pretty sure JRiver does or did A Dirac Live VST plugin so if the 2.0 software might be coming out I will keep an eye out.   thanks.

 

Regards Cazzesman

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3 hours ago, cazzesman said:

The 44/96 issue is not an issue for me as i only use 44 or 96

Hi cazzesman,

I think you missed @Ittaku's point - redbook 44.1 doesn't upsample nicely into 96

And as @davewantsmoore says, the re-clocking may produce issues. 

 

Physical media CDs are the only "things" using 44.1kHz still (it's a legacy sampling rate) - 48kHz and 96kHz sampling are far more common from recording through to streaming...and I'm still not convinced we need 192kHz sampling - but that's a different topic.

 

cheers

Mike

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11 hours ago, almikel said:

redbook 44.1 doesn't upsample nicely into 96

Often more myth than reality in general .... and almost all myth for this specific device.

 

You are going to get the same performance no matter what the input rate.

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@cazzesman bought my minidsp ddrc 22d, let's see what he says. This device in my opinion does wonders. It does not just adjust frequency response (which could be done in Roon too), but also phase and timing. To give you an idea, some time ago I was testing a new amplifier and I connected it out of phase by mistake, then I ran the DIRAC calibration and everything sounded perfect. It was only when I went to unplug the amp that I realised it had been connected out of phase. DIRAC had completely fixed that ! I was pretty impressed.

 

Anyway the ddrc 22d was tested on ASR and it was concluded that it does not degrade the sound in any audible way. The flexibility DIRAC adds in terms of customisation of the curve is far superior to DSPeaker and DEQX ( I have owned both).

 

Here is the link to the ASR test:

 

https://www.audiosciencereview.com/forum/index.php?threads/minidsp-ddrc-22d-dirac-measurements.9010/

 

 

 

 

Edited by o2so

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Not familiar with the CAPS Lagoon but I'd first check if the DSP can be done there. If not, can a USB->SPDIF dongle be connected to it? That way you could connect it directly to the Minidsp and still have the Mutec cleanup afterward.

 

Though, TBH this chain doesn't make much sense to me because the Kii's are likely resampling and reclocking anyway, so the benefit of the Mutec will be limited.

 

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Hi b0dhi,

 

The Lagoon doesn't have alot of grunt for DSP hence the use of a mini dsp.     Certainly a USB-Spdif is an option which would give me the further options of where to put the 22D in the chain i.e. before or after the Mutec.      My plan is to get the 22D in the audio chain and see what it can do.   From there I can mix and match with the mutec in and out of the chain to assess if it's needed at all.    

 

1st things first...................get the 22D, register it, sort the licensing, get an OS system working that will operate the DL Ver 2.0, take some measurements etc, etc.

 

Regards Cazzesman

 

 

 

 

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Finally got some Me time on Xmas eve and plugged in the 22D.

 

The music chain is.............

 

System - CAPS (Lagoon) via USB Curious Cable into Mutec USB 3+ reclocker into Minidsp 22D (with Dirac Live) via Canare 110ohm AES into Kii 3 speakers via Ortofon 110 ohm AES.    The JRiver in the CAPS has been set to process all output sample rates at 96khtz as that is where the 22D operates its magic. 

 

Historically Dirac Live has recently changed its Software from Version 1 to Version 2.    Version 2 requires W10 or Mojave OS for Mac.    Alas I only have W7 on my PC.  I have an older IMac that won't upgrade to Mojave.

 

So at this time I am only able to run DL Ver 1 on the IMac.    I do plan to build a new PC with W10 in the very near future as my current PC is 10+ years old.    

 

As the 22D was a 2nd hand Unit I contacted Minidsp and they swapped over the license to my details without an issue.

 

Once Licensed I was able to download the Ver 1 software from the Minidsp site to the IMac.   Pretty simple system.   I downloaded the 45 page manual and printed it out at work.  Good job Admin has those nice binding machines as well for the professional booklet look 🙂.

 

I purchased a 5 metre usb cable to run from the IMac to the 22D.  A shorter usb connects the Umik-1 mic to the IMac.   The software appeared to be abit flaky and the unit kept dropping out and then failing to connect.    AHHHHHH!!!!    It had me scratching my head but  I managed to get some levels sorted and did some very rough 'Sweeps'.    The software is pretty easy to navigate when it works.

 

Note:   Boxing day I was doing some more testing and the Software wasn't recognising the 22D.   I swapped in a new 2 metre usb cable and presto all was good 100% of the time.     Damn 5 mt cable from Office Works was faulty.    Hard to do your best work when that happens.   Bloody annoying.

 

Ran a few more rough sweeps and loaded some optimised curves.    With my current setup the curves showed my room has a 8db drop at 48htz.     The rest was near on flat to the end.     Pretty happy with what I am seeing and hearing so far.   

 

Once I get some proper Me time, with the house empty and silent, I will reset the Kii's DSP settings to 0 and fine tune the proper Mic placement for some quality sweeps, as directed by the Manual.     

 

Regards Cazzesman 

 

 

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2 hours ago, cazzesman said:

I purchased a 5 metre usb cable to run from the IMac to the 22D.  A shorter usb connects the Umik-1 mic to the IMac.   The software appeared to be abit flaky and the unit kept dropping out and then failing to connect.    AHHHHHH!!!!

Bad plan, if there is any other alternative.

 

5m is the maximum cable supported by the USB spec.... ie. everything has to be "perfect" otherwise it won't work well.

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14 hours ago, davewantsmoore said:

Bad plan, if there is any other alternative.

 

5m is the maximum cable supported by the USB spec.... ie. everything has to be "perfect" otherwise it won't work well.

Thanks Dave.     That's what I love about this site..................the knowledge you get.     And your answer is extremely frustrating to hear.    I had the IMac set u next to my listening position and then the 2 metre USB to the Unmik 1.

 

Well my 5 metres is not perfect......So how about 1 x 3 (22D to PC) and 1x 2 (PC to Mic)

 

Regards Cazzesman

 

 

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36 minutes ago, cazzesman said:

Well my 5 metres is not perfect......So how about 1 x 3 (22D to PC) and 1x 2 (PC to Mic)

Sure, 3m should be fine.

 

 

5m is the absolutely "workable limit" for the USB spec.

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If you want to do 5m or above, use a USB repeater cable instead of a passive cable, and put a short passive cable on the end of it.

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Took my 5 metre back and swapped it for a 2 metre.

 

not ideal but I will make it work.   I sit about 3 metres back so the 2+2 should be okay.

 

Regards Cazzesman

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