DACMatrix combo (DACMagic and M-Stage) *SPECIAL ENDED*

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Belial
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Re: DACMatrix combo (DACMagic and M-Stage) *SPECIAL ENDED*

Post by Belial » Mon Dec 05, 2011 6:55 am

Thanks. Assuming the amp stage is decent, it might make for a poor man's Grace (tho not half as pretty).

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Re: DACMatrix combo (DACMagic and M-Stage) *SPECIAL ENDED*

Post by Riverback » Mon Dec 05, 2011 7:08 am

Should get that catalogue sorted out. You have DAC/Amp combos in both Sources and Amps. Might make it confusing to first time browsers
Cowon J3 -> Vsonic R02ProII | B2 | T50P
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Re: DACMatrix combo (DACMagic and M-Stage) *SPECIAL ENDED*

Post by Marcus » Mon Dec 05, 2011 10:00 am

It's in the works :)
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Re: DACMatrix combo (DACMagic and M-Stage) *SPECIAL ENDED*

Post by unanimous » Tue Dec 06, 2011 7:42 am

Not sure if this is the appropriate place to post this, but bugger it... it's about the combo.

Anyone have any "best practise" setup recommendations for utilising the DACMagic / M-Stage combo with a Macbook running Windows 7 and OSX? What software to use, how to set it up etc.

I started to use VLC player on OSX to play my combination of FLAC and high bitrate mp3 to the DAC via USB interfacec. I noticed that VLC does horrible things to the audio, basically adding "cracking" like there is some sort of clipping going on in the software. Switching to Foobar on Windows on the same laptop yielded much more satisfactory results.

Both software allow the altering of the output volume... I was expecting that the volume would be unamplified and unaltered by the software/computer seeing it was being directed through the DAC to the amp. Am I just being thick?

Also, for my desktop machine, I expect I am better off using the TOS link or SPDIF output to the DAC rather than USB?
Sources: Foobar+WASAPI+DACMagic, Macbook, Cowon D2+, Sony A818, HTC One X
Amp: Matrix M-Stage
'phones: AT AD-900, Ety HF5, Yuin PK3, Sony Ex85

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Re: DACMatrix combo (DACMagic and M-Stage) *SPECIAL ENDED*

Post by G-rig » Tue Dec 06, 2011 7:54 am

unanimous wrote: I started to use VLC player on OSX to play my combination of FLAC and high bitrate mp3 to the DAC via USB interfacec. I noticed that VLC does horrible things to the audio, basically adding "cracking" like there is some sort of clipping going on in the software. Switching to Foobar on Windows on the same laptop yielded much more satisfactory results.

Both software allow the altering of the output volume... I was expecting that the volume would be unamplified and unaltered by the software/computer seeing it was being directed through the DAC to the amp. Am I just being thick?
I too like using different sofware for music/videos. I set the output device in the software to be the DACMagic (USB whatever it's called), leave the software volume on max and adjust it using the headphone amps volume control. I haven't noticed any errors as described but I use MCP not VLC, Windows 7 PC.

I do the same thing when using my monitors from the DACMagic, have the monitor volume in the default (middle setting), software max, control volume with a passive volume control. All works brilliantly.

You may have to test out different direct/rendering options to get blurays to play smoothly, this would affect the sound and picture etc.
Also, for my desktop machine, I expect I am better off using the TOS link or SPDIF output to the DAC rather than USB?
You could test SPDIF but to be honest I couldn't hear the difference and find USB totally fine. It's also a bit easier as it can change the default output when you turn the device on/off. Not worth worrying about jitter unless you don't have anything better to worry about :D.
Last edited by G-rig on Tue Dec 06, 2011 8:18 am, edited 1 time in total.
Sources: Foobar/FLAC, DACMagic
Amps: Matrix M-Stage, Corda 2Move
Headphones: DT250, Sennheiser HD25-II, MS-1
Yamaha HS80M

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Re: DACMatrix combo (DACMagic and M-Stage) *SPECIAL ENDED*

Post by Drubbing » Tue Dec 06, 2011 8:01 am

unanimous wrote:Also, for my desktop machine, I expect I am better off using the TOS link or SPDIF output to the DAC rather than USB?
I got Mac/DACMatrix, I use iTunes as a media player. Can't help with the video stuff, but wot Grig said about USB and optical is right, no sound difference. I use USB because optical doesn't auto change the audio back to Mac speakers when it's turned off. USB does.

Don't let software or your Mac control the volume, that's what a good amp should be doing, and it'll do it better. Max out the Mac end and use the amp.
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Re: DACMatrix combo (DACMagic and M-Stage) *SPECIAL ENDED*

Post by unanimous » Tue Dec 06, 2011 8:48 am

Drubbing wrote:
unanimous wrote:Also, for my desktop machine, I expect I am better off using the TOS link or SPDIF output to the DAC rather than USB?
I got Mac/DACMatrix, I use iTunes as a media player. Can't help with the video stuff, but wot Grig said about USB and optical is right, no sound difference. I use USB because optical doesn't auto change the audio back to Mac speakers when it's turned off. USB does.

Don't let software or your Mac control the volume, that's what a good amp should be doing, and it'll do it better. Max out the Mac end and use the amp.
Thanks for the advice, both of you. For the record, I don't really care about videos.

OK, so I think VLC is just a bit crap at audio decoding currently. I don't think there is really another option for playing FLAC on OSX? I'll just stick to Win7/Foobar at max volume then... I was using VLC and foobar at minimum volume assuming this was the best thing to do...
Sources: Foobar+WASAPI+DACMagic, Macbook, Cowon D2+, Sony A818, HTC One X
Amp: Matrix M-Stage
'phones: AT AD-900, Ety HF5, Yuin PK3, Sony Ex85

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Re: DACMatrix combo (DACMagic and M-Stage) *SPECIAL ENDED*

Post by G-rig » Tue Dec 06, 2011 8:55 am

unanimous wrote:OK, so I think VLC is just a bit crap at audio decoding currently. I don't think there is really another option for playing FLAC on OSX? I'll just stick to Win7/Foobar at max volume then... I was using VLC and foobar at minimum volume assuming this was the best thing to do...
Just did a quick search, sounds like Mplayer for OSX could be ok?
http://mplayerosx.sourceforge.net/

VLC should have been ok, maybe go through all the options/settings again before giving up as some people swear by it.

Cheers,
Sources: Foobar/FLAC, DACMagic
Amps: Matrix M-Stage, Corda 2Move
Headphones: DT250, Sennheiser HD25-II, MS-1
Yamaha HS80M

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Re: DACMatrix combo (DACMagic and M-Stage) *SPECIAL ENDED*

Post by Drubbing » Tue Dec 06, 2011 8:56 am

I got a heap of FLAC files sent to me, and just converted them to a lossless format iTunes could read. Plenty of free software on the net that'll do it, and you can do them in batches, to ease the pain.
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Re: DACMatrix combo (DACMagic and M-Stage) *SPECIAL ENDED*

Post by Belial » Tue Dec 06, 2011 9:02 am

Foobar is actually quite good at batch conversion. It's how I go FLAC -> mp3/apple lossless.

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Re: DACMatrix combo (DACMagic and M-Stage) *SPECIAL ENDED*

Post by unanimous » Tue Dec 06, 2011 9:03 am

Drubbing wrote:I got a heap of FLAC files sent to me, and just converted them to a lossless format iTunes could read. Plenty of free software on the net that'll do it, and you can do them in batches, to ease the pain.
Off topic, but I am philosophically opposed to iTunes and Apple in general. :D I feel dirty owning a Macbook Pro...

I'll give M-Player a crack and see if it suits. Otherwise, I'm happy with Win7/Foobar. Foobar rocks.
Sources: Foobar+WASAPI+DACMagic, Macbook, Cowon D2+, Sony A818, HTC One X
Amp: Matrix M-Stage
'phones: AT AD-900, Ety HF5, Yuin PK3, Sony Ex85

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Re: DACMatrix combo (DACMagic and M-Stage) *SPECIAL ENDED*

Post by G-rig » Tue Dec 06, 2011 9:08 am

unanimous wrote:
Drubbing wrote:I got a heap of FLAC files sent to me, and just converted them to a lossless format iTunes could read. Plenty of free software on the net that'll do it, and you can do them in batches, to ease the pain.
Off topic, but I am philosophically opposed to iTunes and Apple in general. :D I feel dirty owning a Macbook Pro...
Yes, don't be a slave to iTunes and their formats, it could screw you over in the future if you ever change and not many portable devices support m4a either.

Although as suggested it's not hard converting if you really want to use iTunes. Foobar and FLAC does rock, and it's the way to go. Especially if you apply replaygain then you can shuffle all your FLAC with the same volume using Track gain (or even play albums at similar volumes). That was my pet hate with MP3 was the highly variable volume differences between tracks/albums and constantly fiddling with it.
Sources: Foobar/FLAC, DACMagic
Amps: Matrix M-Stage, Corda 2Move
Headphones: DT250, Sennheiser HD25-II, MS-1
Yamaha HS80M

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Re: DACMatrix combo (DACMagic and M-Stage) *SPECIAL ENDED*

Post by Drubbing » Tue Dec 06, 2011 9:21 am

unanimous wrote:
Drubbing wrote:I got a heap of FLAC files sent to me, and just converted them to a lossless format iTunes could read. Plenty of free software on the net that'll do it, and you can do them in batches, to ease the pain.
Off topic, but I am philosophically opposed to iTunes and Apple in general. :D I feel dirty owning a Macbook Pro...
People used to feel the same about Microsoft and Bill Gates. Now he's a saint.

Apple finally pwned MS via the iPod/Phone and people started to buy Macs. Their lock in strategy is nothing different to MS and it's cahoots with hardware multinationals. Apple are simply cutting out the middleman. If we were as smart as Steve Jobs, we'd have all done the same thing. Gates was, and so he bought into Apple.

I'm happy to wallow in the mud, I can still burn my discs to mp3, it's not like Apple are telling me what format to use, just because they don't support FLAC.
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Re: DACMatrix combo (DACMagic and M-Stage) *SPECIAL ENDED*

Post by Drubbing » Tue Dec 06, 2011 9:25 am

G-rig wrote: you can shuffle all your FLAC with the same volume using Track gain (or even play albums at similar volumes). That was my pet hate with MP3 was the highly variable volume differences between tracks/albums and constantly fiddling with it.
iTunes Soundcheck does the same thing.
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Re: DACMatrix combo (DACMagic and M-Stage) *SPECIAL ENDED*

Post by G-rig » Tue Dec 06, 2011 9:30 am

Drubbing wrote: I'm happy to wallow in the mud, I can still burn my discs to mp3, it's not like Apple are telling me what format to use, just because they don't support FLAC.
Depends what you like and are used to I guess. I just didn't like being forced to use iTunes on my PC when I had an iphone, and the xp k-mixer issue means that Foobar sounded a lot better. It's also very easy copying movies/music onto my android phone without stuffing around and converting/transcoding. iTunes also didn't give you the option to buy/download apple lossless either, not sure if that has changed. I don't burn mp3s but like having a lossless backup of my collection.
Sources: Foobar/FLAC, DACMagic
Amps: Matrix M-Stage, Corda 2Move
Headphones: DT250, Sennheiser HD25-II, MS-1
Yamaha HS80M

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