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  1. #1

    Who's used the Audiophile Optimizer for Windows 2012 Server or Windows 8?

    Just wondering, what has been the experience of others using Windows Server 2012 Optimizer. In early September I loaned my Zuma to one of the world's most famous amp designers (the current Stereophile has a super positive review of one of his amps) and he loved it so much with Windows 2012, Jplay/JRiver and the Audiophile Optimizer that he won't give it back (literally!). And he's stopped all other playback -- CD's, other servers (and he has a lot of them), etc.

    He did offer to buy it but after hearing how much he liked it, I refused and told him to build his own.

    I'm curious if others have had the same experience. I'm getting the Zuma back November 9 and am anxious to hear it for myself.

    One more note: I'd had the Zuma running with Window 8 and JRiver and it couldn't touch the quality of what I got playing a CD through my Wright tube-modded Oppo 95 so I stopped using it.

    The amp designer has the newer tube-modded Oppo 105 and he says the Zuma with Server 2012/JRiver-JPlay and the Optimizer is much better than what he finds on playing a CD with even his Oppo.
    Last edited by Mike Gillespie; 10-22-2013 at 01:41 AM.
    MG555

  2. #2
    Your Zuma experience is very interesting - it goes to show you have to hear these things for yourself as I think the standard Zuma with W8 and JRiver is excellent. Let us know when you get it back, I'm currently working with Phil on builds for his optimiser.

    You have to try these things for yourself - I'm sure you have read all the positive reports on the dedicated JPlay thread.
    Custom built music servers: www.hifidelit.com

  3. #3
    Masters Level Member ted_b's Avatar
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    I am a field alpha tester for Phil and his Audio Optimizer. I find it irreplaceable as a tool for getting the best out of one's system. I run a dual pc setup for jplay, with my front-end pc (aka controlpc) a CAPS V2+ (identical to CAPS V3 Lagoon) also serving as my multichannel server. The back-end (aka audiopc) is a Zuma-sized box running i7. Both run Windows Server 2012 and the latest Optimizer, with sonic signatures and digital filters set appropriately.

    Phil has done an incredible job, and he continues to optimize more and more, all the while leaving us with a tool that does not require a techy background. The Optimizer asks simple questions and then does its thing, whether you are running with a GUI or in core mode (aka dos command mode, as most of us with audiopcs run).
    "We're all bozos on this bus"....F.T.

  4. #4
    In my opinion, Windows Server 2012 even in stock form is far better sounding than a Windows 8 with any tweaking. Phil's Audiophile Optimizer takes 2012 to amazing levels of sound quality.

    When I first heard Phil was going to charge over $100 for his optimizer, I was turned off. I figured I could get most of the way tweaking things myself as I did with Windows 8. I purchased the optimizer a couple of weeks ago, and I couldn't be more impressed. The software's function is really great, the guide is very thorough, and the sound quality is amazing. Then add in the different flexibility options like sound signatures, and now it's really something special. And if all that's not enough, the level of support from Phil on his product is second to none. Now I feel the ~$100 price is a steal.

    I run a single PC setup, have no intentions of going dual PC, and I'd like to skip JPLAY if possible. I'm currently running in "minimal server mode" with Phil's optimizer, JRMC 19 in kernel streaming mode, and the sound quality is very good even though I'm still missing my PPA USB card. I couldn't be much happier at the moment.

  5. #5
    hey guys, I did a quick search but could not find a link to Phil's Audiophile Optimizer. Can someone please direct me? Also, is there a version for Windows 7? I am using Fidelizer with good results so Phil's optimizer is very interesting to me.
    8TB NAS >> Wireless N >> CAPS Zuma Music Server >> JRiver MC >> Musical Fidelity V-Link USB Converter >> Luxman D-06 CDP/DAC >> Accustic Arts Power 1 int amp >> Sonus Faber Guaneri Evolution speakers

    Other components:
    Windows Server 2012 Essentials R2 OS
    Audiophile Optimizer 1.30
    PS Audio P3 AC regenerator
    Keces DC-116 linear PSU (19V, 6A)
    Light Harmonic Lightspeed Split USB cable
    Synergistic Research Tungsten AC power cords
    Tara Labs The One speaker cables
    Tara Labs The Two Extended with HFX Station IC
    Oyaide R1 outlets
    Stillpoints Ultra Mini footers
    Hi-Fi Tuning fuses
    Vicoustic and RealTraps room treatments

  6. #6
    Masters Level Member ted_b's Avatar
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    Highend-AudioPC | AudiophileOptimizer

    Windows Server 2012 tool only, not for Win 7 or Win 8.
    "We're all bozos on this bus"....F.T.

  7. #7
    I've found Phil really also answers email. Even though he's also so busy as a developer. A good sign.
    Last edited by Mike Gillespie; 10-22-2013 at 11:40 AM.
    MG555

  8. #8
    For any one interested in trying Windows Server 2012, Microsoft offers a free 6 month trial. That's the only reason I took a chance.
    MG555

  9. #9
    home of the AudiophileOptimizer audioPhil's Avatar
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    Hello

    thanks for the positive feedbacks given so far. Currently only Server 2012 and 2012 R2 are supported. I decided to stop "John Doe's Audiophile Windows 8" quiet a few months ago. And i am still 100% that i will never achieve the same result on a client operating system like i can do with a stripped down server OS in core mode.

    But for practical and also financial reasons, i am thinking about a Windows 8.1 version. Maybe i will offer my Beta Testers something for Win 8.1 in the near future.

    Hopefully more people will dive in and give server 2012 a try. You will hear the difference even with a "out of the box" installation of server 2012 in GUI mode. Stripped down to core edition and optimized with my Software the really amazing part beginns. :-)

    the needed links for the trial/evaluation ISO's of Server 2012 and 2012 R2 can be found on my homepage. Also the public version of the detailed step-by-step PDF Guide. Even some videos are available on the page to show how things work in core mode.

    take care and enjoy,
    AudioPhil

    swiss made high-end computer audio

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Gillespie View Post
    For any one interested in trying Windows Server 2012, Microsoft offers a free 6 month trial. That's the only reason I took a chance.
    Man, if only it wasnt so damn expensive!
    8TB NAS >> Wireless N >> CAPS Zuma Music Server >> JRiver MC >> Musical Fidelity V-Link USB Converter >> Luxman D-06 CDP/DAC >> Accustic Arts Power 1 int amp >> Sonus Faber Guaneri Evolution speakers

    Other components:
    Windows Server 2012 Essentials R2 OS
    Audiophile Optimizer 1.30
    PS Audio P3 AC regenerator
    Keces DC-116 linear PSU (19V, 6A)
    Light Harmonic Lightspeed Split USB cable
    Synergistic Research Tungsten AC power cords
    Tara Labs The One speaker cables
    Tara Labs The Two Extended with HFX Station IC
    Oyaide R1 outlets
    Stillpoints Ultra Mini footers
    Hi-Fi Tuning fuses
    Vicoustic and RealTraps room treatments

  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by tboooe View Post
    Man, if only it wasnt so damn expensive!
    I had great hesitation, but decided there was nothing to lose if I could try it for free for 6 months. So did a bunch of buds. We were all sold. Huge improvement over Windows 8. And one bud is running Server 2012 and Phil's optimizer on a 2009 Mac Mini without any issues!

    If you know a software developer (I don't unfortunately), there's a good chance they can get you a copy of 2012 for free.

    The only good thing about paying $670 for Server 2012 is that the money covers 2 PC's... So either split it with a friend, or run double PC Jplay.
    MG555

  12. #12
    I have to echo everyone else's comments.

    If you're using a Windows server, Phil's software is a must.

    I defy anyone to find a hardware or cable investment that offers the same bang for the buck.

    Couple that with Phil's friendly and timely responses and I can only say if you don't try his software it's your loss.

    Products like Phil's have made this hobby more enjoyable than ever for me . . . and I suspect many others as well.

    Joel

  13. #13
    Can I use Server Essentials or does it have to be Standard? Also, will Server run on an Atom based machine?
    8TB NAS >> Wireless N >> CAPS Zuma Music Server >> JRiver MC >> Musical Fidelity V-Link USB Converter >> Luxman D-06 CDP/DAC >> Accustic Arts Power 1 int amp >> Sonus Faber Guaneri Evolution speakers

    Other components:
    Windows Server 2012 Essentials R2 OS
    Audiophile Optimizer 1.30
    PS Audio P3 AC regenerator
    Keces DC-116 linear PSU (19V, 6A)
    Light Harmonic Lightspeed Split USB cable
    Synergistic Research Tungsten AC power cords
    Tara Labs The One speaker cables
    Tara Labs The Two Extended with HFX Station IC
    Oyaide R1 outlets
    Stillpoints Ultra Mini footers
    Hi-Fi Tuning fuses
    Vicoustic and RealTraps room treatments

  14. #14
    There are threads here and at Jplay that answer a lot of questions. You need ws2012 standard and I've run it on a Topanga (dn2800mt).
    Custom built music servers: www.hifidelit.com

  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by tboooe View Post
    Can I use Server Essentials or does it have to be Standard? Also, will Server run on an Atom based machine?
    Essentials won't work according to Phil.

    I played with Standard on my Atom based CAPS v3, and it ran MUCH better than Windows 8 Pro. It felt faster, and was more stable. I would highly recommend trying Standard if you can.

  16. #16
    home of the AudiophileOptimizer audioPhil's Avatar
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    Hello

    It does "not work" is not an entirely correct description of the situation. I had
    to code a routine to check what OS is installed. Only Server 2012 R1/R2 standard/
    datacenter edition will be allowed. all other OS will be rejected right away.

    But Why that? Because i have to make sure users follow the instructions carefully
    and are not able to try anything they think might be a good idea, but will lead
    to the opposite in the end. it's my job to get sure such things will not happen.
    (This is the key to achieve such great results by the way)

    So why not Essentials Edition? Because it has many roles and features pre-installed
    we do not want to be there. Addiditionally there is NO core mode in Essentials and
    Foundation Edition available. Essentials Edition is a completeley unsuitable platform
    for our target, and therefore the AudiophileOptimizer will not run on it.

    But why not Hyper-V Edition? Because Hyper-V Edition has no Windows Audio
    Architecture at all. And even if i would invest probably many many months of work
    to get it "in" there, it would still be absolutely NOT allowed due to legal reasons to
    use it. And i would get into big trouble selling a product what would make this possible.
    Hyper-V Edition may strictly and only be used as Hypervisor Platform (Virtualization)

    And what about WinPE? More or less the same situation like Hyper-V Edition. Probably
    not possible (techincal part) and certainly forbidden (legal part).

    This is the reason why the AudiophileOptimizer supports "only" standard and datacenter
    editions. these are the only two editions fitting our need and beeing also the right
    choiches from legal aspects. No body on earth is going to buy a datacenter edition
    for our usage, so in real life only standard will be used (even if datacenter edition
    does work as well)

    I hope this clears the situation.

    Thanks a lot,
    Phil

    swiss made high-end computer audio

  17. #17
    Thank you for the reply Phil. I must admit I am totally intrigued! I am going to try and find someone to split the cost of a Standard license with me.
    8TB NAS >> Wireless N >> CAPS Zuma Music Server >> JRiver MC >> Musical Fidelity V-Link USB Converter >> Luxman D-06 CDP/DAC >> Accustic Arts Power 1 int amp >> Sonus Faber Guaneri Evolution speakers

    Other components:
    Windows Server 2012 Essentials R2 OS
    Audiophile Optimizer 1.30
    PS Audio P3 AC regenerator
    Keces DC-116 linear PSU (19V, 6A)
    Light Harmonic Lightspeed Split USB cable
    Synergistic Research Tungsten AC power cords
    Tara Labs The One speaker cables
    Tara Labs The Two Extended with HFX Station IC
    Oyaide R1 outlets
    Stillpoints Ultra Mini footers
    Hi-Fi Tuning fuses
    Vicoustic and RealTraps room treatments

  18. #18
    Trouble maker... Audio_ELF's Avatar
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    Middle Earth... sorry mean Middle of England.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Gillespie View Post
    The only good thing about paying $670 for Server 2012 is that the money covers 2 PC's... So either split it with a friend, or run double PC Jplay.
    Mike... I don't think this is the case - read http://download.microsoft.com/downlo...ricing_FAQ.pdf and question 11 in particular.

    Eloise

  19. #19
    home of the AudiophileOptimizer audioPhil's Avatar
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    Hello

    I would start with the 2012 R2 Evaluation ISO linked on my Homepage. You have 180 days before you finally decide to spend this huge amount on Windows Server 2012.

    just a side note, certainly not the right way for everyone, but.... I need about 30 minutes for a complete setup of one machine. Ok, let's think about this :-) means one hour effort per year.... But COUNTLESS hours of sonic orgasms!

    The ver first setup is not done in 30 minutes, i agree. But equipped with my guide and capable of reading, it's a rather easy task and won't take much time.

    Alternatives are programms like Microsoft BizSpark, DreamSpark, ActionPack, etc. Many ways available.

    take care,
    Phil

    swiss made high-end computer audio

  20. #20

    Almost fully operational; best SQ and convenience yet using Core 2012

    Quote Originally Posted by audioPhil View Post
    Hello

    I would start with the 2012 R2 Evaluation ISO linked on my Homepage. You have 180 days before you finally decide to spend this huge amount on Windows Server 2012.

    just a side note, certainly not the right way for everyone, but.... I need about 30 minutes for a complete setup of one machine. Ok, let's think about this :-) means one hour effort per year.... But COUNTLESS hours of sonic orgasms!

    The ver first setup is not done in 30 minutes, i agree. But equipped with my guide and capable of reading, it's a rather easy task and won't take much time.

    Alternatives are programms like Microsoft BizSpark, DreamSpark, ActionPack, etc. Many ways available.

    take care,
    Phil

    Using Server 2012 Core, JPlay5.1, Foobar2000, Foobar4JPlaymini, AudioOptimizer v1.21 ( 1-B settings )...SQ far better than in the past; convenience of using the Foobar skin to select music for JPlaymini without command line keystrokes, much better audio quality than just using regular Foobar2000, v1.29.
    More important is the great support and rapid response I received from Phillippe ( AudioOptimizer ) and Dominique ( Foobar4JPlaymini ), in getting all the parts working together synergistically.

  21. #21
    home of the AudiophileOptimizer audioPhil's Avatar
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    Hello Folks

    I am currently working on the beta of version 1.22 of the AudiophileOptimizer. There will be quiet a few changes and news:

    - Introduction of eXpress and Export mode

    The eXpress mode will set most settings for you and is the desired route for beginners who don't want to decide and think about to many questions and just want to enjoy and listen good music. Expert mode offers all the known and some new Options.

    - More network related optimizations
    - More filesystem related optimizations
    - More registry optimizations
    - More CPU related optimizations
    - One new Digitial-Filter mode
    - Possibility to enable/disable HPET
    - Boot-Manager Text changed to "AudiophileEdition 1.2x"
    - Several minor changes
    - Update of the PDF Guide
    - ServiceEnabler 1.41

    The beta of 1.22 will be sent out to the usual suspects within the next days.

    Take care,
    Phil

    swiss made high-end computer audio

  22. #22
    Quote Originally Posted by audioPhil View Post
    Hello Folks

    I am currently working on the beta of version 1.22 of the AudiophileOptimizer. There will be quiet a few changes and news:

    - Introduction of eXpress and Export mode


    The eXpress mode will set most settings for you and is the desired route for beginners who don't want to decide and think about to many questions and just want to enjoy and listen good music. Expert mode offers all the known and some new Options.

    - More network related optimizations
    - More filesystem related optimizations
    - More registry optimizations
    - More CPU related optimizations
    - One new Digitial-Filter mode
    - Possibility to enable/disable HPET
    - Boot-Manager Text changed to "AudiophileEdition 1.2x"
    - Several minor changes
    - Update of the PDF Guide
    - ServiceEnabler 1.41

    The beta of 1.22 will be sent out to the usual suspects within the next days.

    Take care,
    Phil
    Looks great, Phil. Keep up the tremendous work.
    MG555

  23. #23
    Hi,
    after reading a lot here I decided to give it a try. I have a Mytek DAC and something very close to the ZUMA. I have active german speakers from Abacus.

    Only switching from Windows 8 to Windows Server 2012R2 was already an improvement. But optimizer in Core mode made my speakers so much better. The sound stage improved a lot. I never was a big believer that an OS or cable could make a difference since it is all digital. But I was so wrong. I am running a single PC Setup without JPLAY and only use JRMC.

    Everyhing sounds better, clearer an much more alive. If you want better sound and are already have been optimizing your Windows 7/8 system just do the switch to Windows Server 2012R2 with Phil's Optimizer. In my opinion this will be a bigger jump than buying an USB Cable for 300$

    Cheers
    Timur

  24. #24
    Quote Originally Posted by voider78 View Post
    Hi,
    after reading a lot here I decided to give it a try. I have a Mytek DAC and something very close to the ZUMA. I have active german speakers from Abacus.

    Only switching from Windows 8 to Windows Server 2012R2 was already an improvement. But optimizer in Core mode made my speakers so much better. The sound stage improved a lot. I never was a big believer that an OS or cable could make a difference since it is all digital. But I was so wrong. I am running a single PC Setup without JPLAY and only use JRMC.

    Everyhing sounds better, clearer an much more alive. If you want better sound and are already have been optimizing your Windows 7/8 system just do the switch to Windows Server 2012R2 with Phil's Optimizer. In my opinion this will be a bigger jump than buying an USB Cable for 300$

    Cheers
    Timur
    By far the best thing to happen to my system in a very long time. Phil has done something amazing IMO. The Optimizer makes me stop thinking about my system, and just listen to the music. And it just keeps getting better...

    regards
    Bob

  25. #25
    I hope this isn't too off topic. I am on the verge of building a single PC setup with Win server 2012 plus the optimizer. I am moving from my logitech media server/squeezebox system (transporter/touch) which has served me well for many years.

    Has anyone made this switch and can you comment on the change in sound? Obviously the DAC needs to be the same to really compare apples to apples.
    Main system:Sources: Lampizator G4/L4.5 DAC; Basis 2200 with Calibration base; Benz Micro Ruby H cartridge; Audio Research Reference Phono 2SE; Amplifiers: Cary SLP-05; 2 Cary SA-500.1 mono blocks; Speakers: Vandersteen 5As; Office System: Sources: Logitech Touch with CI Audio power supply; Van Alstine FET Valve DAC; Amplifier: Leben CS300SX; Headphones: Audez'e LCD-3s with Q-audio cable

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