• Software

    by Published on 12-22-2016 07:06 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Software
    Article Preview



    Note: I originally started this piece as an in-depth look at Android for audiophiles. I wanted to do the research and educate people so they didn't have to spend their time combing the entire Internet. I figured the article would be a great resource for getting the best sound out of an Android device. After several days of research, talking to experts, even talking to Google, this article turned in a little different direction. There are major problems with Android audio. I ran into them. I tried to provide details and some workarounds, amid my frustration. - CC

    I purchased my first iPhone on June 9, 2008. It was the 3G model. Back then, I didn't really use it for audio because the world was a different place. That phone was maxed-out at 16GB of storage, there were no major streaming music services, analog audio output was less than good, and there were zero devices capable of extracting digital audio from an iPhone. As future iPhone versions were released with more storage, streaming services appeared with lossless offline downloads, and external DACs capable of turning an iPhone into a pretty good audio device became available, I switched from my 160 GB iPod Classic and began to depend on my iPhone for mobile audio playback.

    On September 7, 2016 the iPhone 7 was announced. I was set to upgrade from my iPhone 6 Plus, but was very underwhelmed after watching Apple's presentation. I thought about keeping my 6 Plus until the "magical" iPhone 8 is released, but decided it was time for a change. I switched to the Google Pixel phone running Android. When switching to an Android device, it was very important to me to use an official Google phone. Google ensures its phones have the "real" Android experience, without bloatware, and will be updated to the newest version of the Android operating system as soon as it's released. On the other hand, manufacturers such as Samsung, LG, HTC, Motorola, and Huawei use such customized versions of Android, it's hard to believe they can still use the Android brand. Bloatware an lack of updates are two major issues with non-Google Android phones. Anyway, I made the switch to a 128 GB Google Pixel, and the quest for audiophile quality audio from Android started immediately. I literally hadn't received the phone yet, and I was already trying to find the right audio-related accessories and the best way to output bit perfect audio. ...
    by Published on 03-19-2015 02:10 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Software
    Article Preview



    Since the dawn of ripping CDs and downloading high resolution music people have been subjecting the files to audio analysis through applications such as Audacity and Adobe Audition. This type of analysis can be interesting when it reveals a high resolution album was simply upsampled from at 16 bit / 44.1 kHz version. A much more interesting, and more telling, indicator of sound quality can be seen when analyzing a track's waveform for dynamic range compression. Now that audiophiles are streaming lossless 16 bit / 44.1 kHz music from services such as TIDAL HIFI, Qobuz, and Deezer, the question of how to analyze this music becomes relevant. In the past we simply imported the file stored on our hard drive into one of the analysis applications and we had our answers. Because streaming services don't store music on our hard drives in the traditional ...
    by Published on 07-17-2013 01:21 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Software,
    3. Hardware
    Article Preview

    Warning the following article contains some geeky stuff. What follows is a step by step guide to building a tiny 2.4" x 0.82" x 3.54" Linux music server. It's not rocket science and the instructions make the process fairly easy, but the article isn't for everybody. Thanks to CA readers K-man and Richard Dale for additional information and tweaks for setting up the BeagleBone Black so it runs great. Please note there are many ways to setup and configure the BBB. This is just one way using either Mac OS X or Windows. Readers are encouraged to leave comments with additional tips, tricks, and tweaks. I will update this article accordingly. ...
    by Published on 04-25-2013 10:51 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Software

    In this article, I independently adjust the amplitude (with digital eq) and bit-depth of a digital music file to identify at what threshold level I can start detecting a difference in sound quality compared to the original music file. In other words, how far away from bit-perfect can I detect an audible change in SQ. All music files are available for download. As a listening experience, feel free to participate to determine your own audibility threshold level. To correlate the listening tests with measurements, the differencing technique described in JRiver Mac versus JRiver Windows Sound Quality Comparison is being used. ...
    by Published on 03-14-2013 02:00 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. OS X,
    3. Software,
    4. Windows

    I have been listening to JRiver Media Center on Windows for almost two years and have been a happy customer. JRiver on Windows is extensively reviewed by Chris.
    Now that an early release of JRiver is available on the Mac, I thought I would take the opportunity to compare the sound quality between the two JRiver music players.
    Similar to how I compared JRiver to JPlay, I am using the following test methods and tools to compare SQ:

    • Using Audacity (or any digital audio editing software) to digitally record the output from JRiver on both Mac and Windows. Then by editing and lining up the track samples, inverting one of the tracks, and mixing them together, we will see what audio signal is left over (i.e. the difference file) and whether it is subjectively audible.
    • Using Audio DiffMaker, that is purpose built software for audio differencing tests, to analyze the two recordings, which also produces a difference file that can be listened to and subjectively evaluated.
    • Using Foobar’s ABX Comparator to listen to each recorded track and determine which one sounds different or subjectively better.
    ...
    by Published on 02-17-2012 02:38 AM
    1. Categories:
    2. Software,
    3. Software,
    4. Windows

    It has been nearly two years to the day since I wrote about JRiver Media Center [Linklink]. At the time JRiver was on version 14 and Windows 7 was somewhat new to audiophiles. Now JRiver has progressed to version 17 and most computer audiophiles have moved from previous versions of Windows to Windows 7. Much of the meat in that first article still holds true today. Using Exclusive Mode and WASAPI output remain great methods of outputting bit perfect audio from one's computer. Nevertheless it's time for an updated article that computer audiophiles can use as an unbiased reference for JRiver configuration and information.
    ...
    Page 1 of 5 12345 LastLast