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Was wondering if people could show or say what they are using as PC based music streamers?

I'm going to post a similar one on the htpc section and compare.

I'm about to build new machines for both.

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PC based. 4th generation i5T. HD Plex H1 chassis, LSPU. SSD independently powered, SS RAM. PicoPSU. Very custom Linux-based OS. Lots of bits in rotation.

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I also have a 4th or 5th gen i5. Currently using a silverstone chassis. Ssd running snakeoil is and the psu is giving me horrible buzz. Through my whole system. And the cpu fan too probably. I need some ideas for upgrades. Happy to keep my silverstone chassis but want it nice and silent

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Go fanless and get a new PSU :) either are reusable if you decide to upgrade the platform.

 

There's a lot you can do with 4th gen CPUs that is not possible with later designs, however the new stuff is incredibly lean on power draw if specified correctly.

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31 minutes ago, anewmission said:

I also have a 4th or 5th gen i5. Currently using a silverstone chassis. Ssd running snakeoil is and the psu is giving me horrible buzz. Through my whole system. And the cpu fan too probably. I need some ideas for upgrades. Happy to keep my silverstone chassis but want it nice and silent

 

How are you outputting sound from your PC to your system?

USB interfaces are a popular way to isolate your system from your PC.

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I have two dacs, one I use via USB for dsd high res stuff. 

Another is a firewire recording interface. It can only do upto 96khz though. Still sound extremely sweet.

 

Currently my setup is a 4th gen i5 running snakeoil is as my streamer/upnp for tidal ect. 8gb ram, ssd, asrock 1150 motherboard and a cheap Chinese psu as my thermal take recently died

 

It's a high pitch buzzing noise, once I turn off the pc there is a more faint buzzing from the pre amp, and then a much lower hum for the power amp. Pre and power aren't audible from listening distance

 

 

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I was thinking about getting something like this

https://www.boardss.com/new-asus-e35m1i-deluxe-ddr3-miniitx-sata3-usb3-motherboard-p-1278.html

 

And pairing it with 

https://www.scorptec.com.au/product/power-supplies/atx/74900-cp-9020177-au?gclid=EAIaIQobChMI-vCEtoO-7gIVDdiWCh38iAyVEAQYASABEgLQPPD_BwE

 

Would this mean I would get a fully passively cooled system and still be able to use my silverstone milo chassis?? 

 

I want to keep the chassis as it looks really nice and is the correct 17" or 19".. whatever hifi normally is. 

 

Then I could just use my current ram and ssd.

 

Wondering if it's worth adding a cd player of sorts but I'm not sure of there are any audiophile pc cd drives? Does anybody know?

I already know there is no sacd pc drive but does a dvd audio and hdcd formats sound any good?

 

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58 minutes ago, anewmission said:

I was thinking about getting something like this

https://www.boardss.com/new-asus-e35m1i-deluxe-ddr3-miniitx-sata3-usb3-motherboard-p-1278.html

 

And pairing it with 

https://www.scorptec.com.au/product/power-supplies/atx/74900-cp-9020177-au?gclid=EAIaIQobChMI-vCEtoO-7gIVDdiWCh38iAyVEAQYASABEgLQPPD_BwE

 

Would this mean I would get a fully passively cooled system and still be able to use my silverstone milo chassis?? 

 

I want to keep the chassis as it looks really nice and is the correct 17" or 19".. whatever hifi normally is. 

 

Then I could just use my current ram and ssd.

 

Wondering if it's worth adding a cd player of sorts but I'm not sure of there are any audiophile pc cd drives? Does anybody know?

I already know there is no sacd pc drive but does a dvd audio and hdcd formats sound any good?

 

Just playback or are you doing some processing also?

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On this machine, playback, maybe some pcm to dsd conversion.. not a whole lot of strange things

Will be using snakeoil is with mpd for the best digital audio quality I have ever heard.

 

I have another machine I record music on. That's an i7 with 16gb ram and the whole shebang but it's kept back with my tape machine in another room

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11 minutes ago, anewmission said:

On this machine, playback, maybe some pcm to dsd conversion.. not a whole lot of strange things

Will be using snakeoil is with mpd for the best digital audio quality I have ever heard.

 

Can you drop the PCM>DSD conversion requirement? Changes a lot.

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1 hour ago, anewmission said:

No I don't think I can

 

That's a shame, there's a few ways to lower jitter though undoubtedly the easier way to a good result (as opposed to the hard way to a stunning result) is to keep the power draw as low as possible. If going that way, some nice Celeron-based completely fanless motherboards exist, and aren't expensive. 

 

I can't help with AMD, haven't worked on the platform. 

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24 minutes ago, rmpfyf said:

 

That's a shame, there's a few ways to lower jitter though undoubtedly the easier way to a good result (as opposed to the hard way to a stunning result) is to keep the power draw as low as possible. If going that way, some nice Celeron-based completely fanless motherboards exist, and aren't expensive. 

 

I can't help with AMD, haven't worked on the platform. 

Nah I'm not keen on amd. I'd like to stick to intel.

Surely there are atleast i3s that are fanless

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24 minutes ago, anewmission said:

Nah I'm not keen on amd. I'd like to stick to intel.

Surely there are atleast i3s that are fanless

 

In latest-gen-landia i3's are 6-8MB L2 cache and four physical cores, >3GHz, 7-15W TDP. 

 

The Celerons you're more likely to find are 10W TDP max, up to 4 cores, around half-to-two-thirds the speed and 4MB cache. 

 

So the Celerons you'll find motherboards that have small heatsinks and are fanless. 

 

I've got one of these running https://www.asrock.com/mb/Intel/J4105-ITX/ and it's pretty good out of the box, though you'd probably notice DSD conversion.

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11 hours ago, rmpfyf said:

 

In latest-gen-landia i3's are 6-8MB L2 cache and four physical cores, >3GHz, 7-15W TDP. 

 

The Celerons you're more likely to find are 10W TDP max, up to 4 cores, around half-to-two-thirds the speed and 4MB cache. 

 

So the Celerons you'll find motherboards that have small heatsinks and are fanless. 

 

I've got one of these running https://www.asrock.com/mb/Intel/J4105-ITX/ and it's pretty good out of the box, though you'd probably notice DSD conversion.

Do you notice anything with just dsd playback? I don't mind converting them beforehand.

Has anyone managed to get i2s to work from a hdmi pc port ?

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54 minutes ago, anewmission said:

Do you notice anything with just dsd playback? I don't mind converting them beforehand.

Don't use DSD, sorry. Maybe others could comment?

 

54 minutes ago, anewmission said:

Has anyone managed to get i2s to work from a hdmi pc port ?

 

 

Negative. Need yourself a Pink Faun card.

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27 minutes ago, rmpfyf said:

Don't use DSD, sorry. Maybe others could comment?

 

 

 

Negative. Need yourself a Pink Faun card.

Woah Abit pricey for a card. I'm wondering if anyone has tried one of these vs pc usb.???

 

Something like the topping d90 can accommodate both.

 

Really keen to get the best pc audio streamer, with no fans and hopefully can remove that high pitch buzzing coming from my current pc streamer

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1 minute ago, anewmission said:

Woah Abit pricey for a card. I'm wondering if anyone has tried one of these vs pc usb.???

 

Something like the topping d90 can accommodate both.

 

Really keen to get the best pc audio streamer, with no fans and hopefully can remove that high pitch buzzing coming from my current pc streamer

 

If your streamer works ex the buzzing I'd deal with that.

 

I2S vs USB depends more on how the DAC handles either.

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A couple of things.     I have found that some mini PCs are very quiet/silent, even though they have a laptop-type heat-pipe and fanned heatsink cooling setup.  I bought a cheap Lenovo M93P that sits on the desk in front of me and I don't hear it.

 

Secondly,  does it have to be a PC?  The latest raspberry Pis are very good, and make great streamers with remote web interfaces.  It's the setup I prefer.

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Well with a p

2 hours ago, aussievintage said:

 

A couple of things.     I have found that some mini PCs are very quiet/silent, even though they have a laptop-type heat-pipe and fanned heatsink cooling setup.  I bought a cheap Lenovo M93P that sits on the desk in front of me and I don't hear it.

 

Secondly,  does it have to be a PC?  The latest raspberry Pis are very good, and make great streamers with remote web interfaces.  It's the setup I prefer.

With a pc I get many more options than a raspberry pi. Windows could potentially be a future thing. I can add cards such as the i2s mentioned above or a firewire/thunderbolt card.

 

I am going to get a few raspberry Pi's to replace my bulky htpc's though. Or maybe nvidia shields

 

I looked at the rpi option and by the time I get all th accessories ect it will equal around the same price

 

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3 hours ago, rmpfyf said:

 

If your streamer works ex the buzzing I'd deal with that.

 

I2S vs USB depends more on how the DAC handles either.

I never noticed it until I bought some decent speakers, sonus faber's. Now they are making me notice things in my system that aren't as good as I thought they were

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4 hours ago, anewmission said:

Woah Abit pricey for a card. I'm wondering if anyone has tried one of these vs pc usb.???

 

Something like the topping d90 can accommodate both.

 

Really keen to get the best pc audio streamer, with no fans and hopefully can remove that high pitch buzzing coming from my current pc streamer

I have a Pink Faun I2S card available.

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22 minutes ago, givita_burl said:

I have a Pink Faun I2S card available.

 

The plot thickens :P 
 

(192kHz limited tho)

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2 hours ago, rmpfyf said:

 

The plot thickens :P 
 

(192kHz limited tho)

I'd just keep using usb if that's the case. I know all the ps audio and audio gd stuff is dsd and 768khz pcm

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50 minutes ago, anewmission said:

I'd just keep using usb if that's the case. I know all the ps audio and audio gd stuff is dsd and 768khz pcm

 

Depends on the interface. The CMedia CM8888 chip on the Pink Faun cards will push 8 channels at 192kHz and whilst it'd be possible to do some highly custom faffing around to quad up 8 channels to 768 it'd take some very custom work that most designers would rightly consider 'pushing poo up a brick wall'. There is nothing else that does I2S indigenously off a PCI interface any faster; the other solutions basically run a USB interface in the middle. 

 

Running USB puts the onus on the downstream device to deal with jitter etc as best possible, but the throughput rates are huge - and high frequencies are possible.

 

 

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Over the years  decades I've had quite a few audio/htpc pc's.  I love them.  Finnicky, incrementally updated softwares and os, that once set up perfectly worked, well, perfectly.  Note can be an utter beitch to set up or after some updates.

Had a Q8200 system that worked great with Jriver, Zune, foobar.

I3 worked fine too.

i5 did too.. lol, a graphics card just adds to the noise for audio, go onboard graphics... but...

 

Currently running an i7 8700k, but yeh in an Antec 920 case, RTX 2070 gpu, 32 GB, several ssd's and hdd's.  Typically spotify, youtube or jriver flacs.

 

The thing about streaming is that you can take it as far as any other source, spend $$$$ on speakers and $$$ on amp, be ye not afraid of pimping out a "mere streaming pc".  I've loved all of mine.

Edited by warweary
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14 hours ago, rmpfyf said:

 

Depends on the interface. The CMedia CM8888 chip on the Pink Faun cards will push 8 channels at 192kHz and whilst it'd be possible to do some highly custom faffing around to quad up 8 channels to 768 it'd take some very custom work that most designers would rightly consider 'pushing poo up a brick wall'. There is nothing else that does I2S indigenously off a PCI interface any faster; the other solutions basically run a USB interface in the middle. 

 

Running USB puts the onus on the downstream device to deal with jitter etc as best possible, but the throughput rates are huge - and high frequencies are possible.

 

 

Yeah I did read somewhere that the usb connections use packets to send data. I wonder if that's why my firewire audio interface sounds so smooth. It's meant for recording up to 8 microphones but I occasionally use it as just a dac. 

I haven't heard any of the thunderbolt audio interfaces but it makes me wonder.

The professional world has a few different ways of transmitting data between the computer and the dac/adc. Two of which are similar. Dante and avb which are basically ethernet straight from the pc to the dac. 

There is also Madi which I'm not completely sure how it works.

I think most hifi dacs are still using usb2 but I could be wrong there.

Not sure if thunderbolt has died out now but I still want to try it

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29 minutes ago, anewmission said:

Yeah I did read somewhere that the usb connections use packets to send data. I wonder if that's why my firewire audio interface sounds so smooth.

What do you think firewire and ethernet send?

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15 minutes ago, Ittaku said:

What do you think firewire and ethernet send?

Probably the same? 

Possibly firewire was just the standard for a long time with pro dac/adc's. 

I did some reading up on it about 2005 and firewire was the better option at the time, I guess usb has come a long way since then.

 

Does thunderbolt work the same way? I always thought of it as an outboard pci slot

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4 minutes ago, anewmission said:

Probably the same? 

Possibly firewire was just the standard for a long time with pro dac/adc's. 

I did some reading up on it about 2005 and firewire was the better option at the time, I guess usb has come a long way since then.

 

Does thunderbolt work the same way? I always thought of it as an outboard pci slot

They're all the same. Implementation is the key; it's not the technology. USB can be sensational and firewire terrible, and vice versa.

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2 hours ago, Ittaku said:

They're all the same. Implementation is the key; it's not the technology. USB can be sensational and firewire terrible, and vice versa.

And surely there is something to do with bandwidth and amount of channels. Pro audio is steering away from usb. Back in the day they used alot of adat/optical.

Now most mixers and rack mount dacs have a few options but dante and avb seem to be where it's headed. Alot easier to run an ethernet cable to the stage than a 32 or 64 channel balanced snake.

I think with dante the channels are virtually unlimited

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1 hour ago, anewmission said:

And surely there is something to do with bandwidth and amount of channels. Pro audio is steering away from usb. Back in the day they used alot of adat/optical.

Now most mixers and rack mount dacs have a few options but dante and avb seem to be where it's headed. Alot easier to run an ethernet cable to the stage than a 32 or 64 channel balanced snake.

I think with dante the channels are virtually unlimited

 

Dante is amazing compared to what I was used to dealing with.   

 

About USB though...   Isn't "# of channels" just a software construct limited only by the bandwidth?      USB 3.1 is 10 GHz - I have seen multi-track USB mixers

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1 hour ago, aussievintage said:

 

Dante is amazing compared to what I was used to dealing with.   

 

About USB though...   Isn't "# of channels" just a software construct limited only by the bandwidth?      USB 3.1 is 10 GHz - I have seen multi-track USB mixers

I think usb3 can do 16 channels at 192 max. Thunderbolt is 4x that amount and avb dante is unlimited tracks at either 44.1 or 88.2

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