• MusicGiants & Olive

    According to Stereophile Olive Media Products will be announcing a new product at CES in January with a larger hard drive and 24 bit / 96 KHz playback capability. In addition Olive owners will be able to purchase music directly from MusicGiants using their Olive music server starting in the first quarter of 2008. In other MusicGiants news, Stereophile reports the site will be offering much more content originating from SACD and DVD-Audio albums, downloadable as WMA or FLAC files. DRM-free music appears to be continuing its momentum and will allow MusicGiants to release even more content. Possibly the best news from MusicGiants is that their service is going to be available to Mac users in the near future. I have been debating on whether or not to bite the bullet and setup Windows Vista using Boot Camp on my Mac, but hopefully I won't need to with this development.
    Comments 2 Comments
    1. The Computer Audiophile's Avatar
      The Computer Audiophile -
      Hey Jeff - You bring up another thing I have yet to decide. Run Windows on Parallels or Boot Camp. I have heard good and bad things about both for music purposes. Some people say the Audio drivers under Boot Camp really suck and others say that audio just doesn't sound the same using a virtual machine (which I somewhat believe but haven't tested yet).<br />
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      On another note, Gordon Rankin from Wavelength Audio has suggested that Vista has vast audio improvements over XP. Any thoughts?
    1. rgbyhkr's Avatar
      rgbyhkr -
      I haven't done comparison tests between Vista and XP for audio, but then again, I tend not to use audio output straight from a PC or Mac for playback. There's so much going on within a PC's hardware (and therefore so many variables that can impact signal quality) and the OS that I just prefer to use a dedicated client with a digital out. I've used Sonos, Roku, Airport Express, an old Escient FireBall, Squeezebox 2 and 3, a Kaleidescape and probably a few others I can't think of at the moment. I have been happy with teh resulting output and have used various ones more because of the different features and interfaces offered than because of sound quality.<br />
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      My gut feeling would be that if you're looking to get the best possible performance out of running Windows on a Mac for audio playback, then Boot Camp would likely be the best way to go and thus pair down the variables that might introduce issues. That being said, my detest for WMP makes me someone who would rather cross convert WMA Lossless to FLAC or ALAC (thinking about MusicGiants downloads here) than to bother with WMP at all. So, as long as your WMA Lossless downloads were DRM-free (MusicGiants has both DRM and Non-DRM tracks), those can be converted although I don;t know of a software app you can do that with on the Mac. While there are WMA converters for the Mac, none of the ones I have seen support WMA Lossless conversion. Under Boot Camp running either XP or Vista though, you could easily do batch conversions with a variety of Windows apps.<br />
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