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  1. #1

    No ASIO In Itunes

    Well I have tentatively dipped my toe in the computer audio pool by purchasing a Trends Audio DAC, with the intent of using this as a media converter (USB to S/PDIF) on my main system. In order to get to grips with ripping, storage and playback etc, I started by connecting the Trend to my windows PC as a USB DAC, downloading Itunes and asio4all . After much reading in forums I have discovered
    "YOU CAN NOT USE ITUNES FOR PLAYBACK UTALISING ASIO4ALL TO BYPASS KMIXER". I put this in caps because if someone had done the same on one of the hundreds of posts I have read I would have saved hours of arsing about. No doubt some of you will read this and chuckle to yourselves, but I had assumed that once ASIO was installed anything sending data to the DAC would be using ASIO not Kmixer.

    My eventual setup will be a MAC for the main system, a PC in my study and possibly a second MAC as a media server in the living room. I would like to use a common interface for playback, Itunes if possible as I like the simple interface. It would appear to me that my options are use Foobar or similar on the PC, and Itunes on the Mac, or Itunes on all with Multi-Plugin and Foobar2000 passthrough on the PC.

    Has anyone any experience of Multi-Plugin and Foobar2000 passthrough or any other advice to offer?

    Cheers

    Paul
    PS just thought of a third option, live with PC using Kmixer. Not likely knowing me, I could not live with Itunes putting Diana krall's the look of love in the compilation folder. Even though it shows up correctly in Itunes grouped with all the other Diana Krall CD's, I had to stop Itunes from organising my files and move it in to it's proper place. Just like i can't walk past a picture that is not hung straight :-)

    PPS Are all audiophiles obsessive compulsives or is this just a stereo type? :-) (I was feeling self satisfied that I came up with this so I made it my signature)
    Are all audiophiles obsessive compulsives or is this just a Stereo Type? Yorkshire UK

  2. #2
    Site Founder The Computer Audiophile's Avatar
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    Hey Paul - Nice post. The

    Hey Paul - Nice post. The all caps never hurts when it is something like this. On a Windows PC I suggest J River Media Center and ASIO. But, if you like foobar then that's cool. It's just not a favorite of mine. Media Monkey seems to be coming up more frequently in my conversations outside the forum. You may want to give this one a shot.

    I don't really have anything good to offer about "Multi-Plugin and Foobar2000 passthrough." It looks like you are going down a good road with Macs in your future. Sure PC and Mac will work, but to me it's a question of where I want to spend my time. Listening to something I know has bit perfect output straight out of the box, or trying to configure an application and worrying that something is wrong and I might not be getting the bet sound possible.

    About iTunes auto organize - I actually love it now. I resisted at first, but once I figured out how to get the most benefit from it I was sold. For example your Diana Krall album showing up a a compilation. When this happens to me I just select the songs on the album in iTunes and then select NO this is not a compilation. iTunes moves it to the right folder then. When I have some free time I will browse through the compilation folder to make sure nothing is there that shouldn't be, but 99% of the time everything is perfect.
    Chris Connaker

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  3. #3

    Foobar probably

    Thanks for the reply Chris

    Since posting I have been running listening tests with ASIO and Foobar, switching ASIO off and on, and am in no doubt that using windows without ASIO is not an option. OK so it is only my PC in the study and I am only listening while working, but once you know you are getting second best it's difficult to live with. I opted for Foobar as it is seems to have a wide user base with plenty of support articles and plugins. I was also thinking of Foobar as most of the popular remote applications seem to be able to control this as well as Itunes (why I would need this while sat in front of my PC I do not know). I am not really bothered about which Ripper/Player I use on my PC as long as I can use the same media library for Itunes and have ASIO as the default output. I will certainly look at J River and Media Monkey.

    It would appear that if I want to use Multi-Plugin and Foobar2000 passthrough I would have to drop back to an older version of Itunes as it does not work in the current version.

    As regards the compilation issue I had previously tried what you suggested but Itunes just left the files where they where.(not a problem as it's early days yet)

    I have borrowed a laptop (Windows unfortunately) so that I can try the UD-10 out on my main system, I should stop getting distracted and get on with that.

    Paul

    Are all audiophiles obsessive compulsives or is this just a Stereo Type? Yorkshire UK

  4. #4

    You could try this

    Hi,

    I tried doing the passthrough, and it did not work for me either. I wish it had, because the I Tunes GUI running the Foobar "guts" would have been a nice option for XP users.

    Steve at Emperical Audio and I have been cooredppnding for some weeks and he suggested I unmap my Trends. You can do this easily:

    From the desktop- start,control panel, sounds and audio devices, hardware, USB audio device, properties, properties again, audio devices, USB audio device, add a check mark at the box that says "do not map through this device" hit OK. Back out of all the screens and reboot.

    This seems to be an improvement.

    Nels
    Reviewer- Enjoythemusic.com

  5. #5

    Need more listening tests.

    Cheers Nels
    I had read this tip elsewhere and while it does offer an improvement it did not seem to be as big an improvement as when using ASIO. I may be wrong as I have only tried this on my study PC and not on the main system. I have just this very minute come from trying out the Trends UD-10 through my main system using a laptop ,foobar and ASIO. I bought the Trends just to test out computer driven audio and on this initial try I would say I am sold (anyone want to buy a Shanling CD-T100C?). I will probably start with the Trends connected to my existing DAC then buy a USB DAC in time and re-Use the Trends in another room. The only problem being that if i use the Trends on my main system I will have to get another one for my PC, I can't go back to using my old sound card:-(


    Cheers
    Paul

    Just taken time to test Itunes with DAC not Mapped and Itunes VS Foobar and ASIO. No contest Itunes sounds rather lifeless insruments do not occupy there own space, bass attack is lacking and trebles run together.
    Are all audiophiles obsessive compulsives or is this just a Stereo Type? Yorkshire UK

  6. #6

    Paul,

    Paul,

    A couple of comments:

    1. If you are running with the Trends unmapped in Foobar, Steve Nugent recommends Direct Sound instead of ASIO.

    2. As far as your comments re: the sound of the Trends unmapped in iTunes vs. Foobar and ASIO, you have added strength to my belief that there is more difference in sound quality between players than there is in WAV/AIFF vs. lossless ripping and storage. I found that the Foobar (and J River Media Center) sounded a bit cold and sterile as opposed to the iTunes, which has a bit more body. I also plan to ditch the Windows setup in a few months and go to a MacBook anyway, so iTunes makes far more sense for my situation. iTunes is bit perfect on a Mac without all the fuss with plugins, settings, etc.

    The other thought came to me on your description of the sound quality differences...."I'll bet you are running a solid state system." Not trying to start a flame war or anything, but well over 50% of solid state systems that I have heard sound that way to me.

    3. I would keep the Trends in the system indefinitely. I have a couple of DACS here (the review is being finished today) and I ran into an interesting situation. The DACS are both from the same manufacturer. One is USB, one is not. My initial thought before the units arrived was that the USB DAC was going to be an asset, as it allows the removal of one unit from the signal path. What I found was the USB unit was very noisy, unless my Dell laptop was running on battery power. The USB unit was fine on my wife's MacBook on wall current or battery. The non USB unit, used with the Trends was quiet as a church mouse With the Dell, regardless of how it was powered. My thought now is that PC wise, stay with the Trends until you can afford the Emperical Audio unit, which will pass a 24/96 signal. The Trends is limited to 16/48. A Mac has optical as well as SPDIF output, so it can feed a non USB dac directly.

    Nels
    Reviewer- Enjoythemusic.com

  7. #7

    More to think about

    Cheers Nels
    I ran two tests with itunes vs foobar and ASIO,
    PC - Trends UD10 - Trends TA 10.1
    PC - Trends UD10 - Musical Fidelity Tri Vista DAC - Musical Fidelity Tri Vista Amp.
    (In all cases I was running the Trends UD10 from battery)

    I only had time to listen to a few tracks but taking into account the difference in quality of these two systems the results where very similar. Foobar ASIO playback offered a much clearer picture, very noticeable on acoustic instruments was the way a plucked string "rang", Im not referring to a harshness or tizzy top end but natural harmonics. This was not the case with itunes the natural decay of the previous note was drowned out by the next note. Don't get me wrong itunes sounded good, probably similar to my existing Shanling CD-T100, but Foobar and ASIO was a definite step up.
    I try to avoid all the technical stuff as much as possible as it takes up time I could be listening to music, so you will have to excuse my less than precise use of language. I do not know if my Tri-Vista gear is classed as "solid state" I chose it as it has qualities of both solid state and Tube at a price I could afford.
    I have limited experience with optical, and it was not a good one, it could be down to the quality of cable but my DAC sounds way better on S/PDIF (coax).

    For me Itunes on the PC is a no go, but like yourself I will be going down the Mac route on my main system. I am just in a quandary as to which format to rip to AIFF and FLAC are the current front runners, I’m not sure if AIFF supports tags, which I would need for organizing files on my study PC/foobar setup, but Itunes does not support FLAC out of the box. I feel another post coming on.

    Cheers Paul




    Are all audiophiles obsessive compulsives or is this just a Stereo Type? Yorkshire UK

  8. #8

    Hi Paul,

    Hi Paul,

    Tri Vista..nice. It is, as you know, tubes and solid state both, a hybrid. My preamplifier is a Sonic Fontiers SFL1 Signature, also a hybrid. This week a totally tricked out all tube preamp will be showing up. We will see how it fares.

    I totally understand what you are saying about the sound quality differences in your comparison tests. I experienced basically the same thing, but I think there is more going on. With Foobar, I found I was experiencing listening fatugue and could not listen to digitally stored music for long periods of time. I would listen for a bit and turn to vinyl to get my fix. I did not realize what was going on, but downloaded iTunes on a whim, and heard the difference right off. I did some A/B stuff with my wife, and she preferred iTunes as well. I can, and often do, have my PC Audio front end running for 12+ hours now, something I could not do with Foobar.

    My experience concerning connection methods mirrors yours: coax is the way to go.

    Nels
    Reviewer- Enjoythemusic.com

  9. #9
    Site Founder The Computer Audiophile's Avatar
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    Hey Paul - AIFF supports

    Hey Paul - AIFF supports tags. I use AIFF for everything and love it.
    Chris Connaker

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  10. #10

    How?

    When I rip using Itunes then view the files in Foobar no tags are present, when I rip using EAC then view in Foobar I can see the tags. I think itunes is just ripping to the folder Artist-CD-track number song title, then using this as the basis for it's database, I have set EAC to rip to the same directory/file structure but it appears to be adding tags as well. I would be happy to use Itunes for ripping, but need the tags when using foobar for playback in my study.

    Any Ideas

    Paul
    Are all audiophiles obsessive compulsives or is this just a Stereo Type? Yorkshire UK

  11. #11
    Site Founder The Computer Audiophile's Avatar
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    Hey Paul - Take a look at

    Hey Paul - Take a look at this thread from HA http://www.hydrogenaudio.org/forums/lofiversion/index.php/t43021.html

    To quote a snippet from the thread, "iTunes supports the consumer 'ID3 ' chunk tagging of AIFF - but not the more professional chunk types. This is interesting, since the RIFF chunk tags are used for sorting/naming/classification in Apple's Professional products including Logic Pro, Soundtrack, and even Garageband and Apple Loops."
    Chris Connaker

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  12. #12

    Not sure I undersatnd

    I read this one ealier today, but it went a little over my head. It seems to be saying that Itunes does include tags but not in a way foobar can read them?
    Why does everything have to be so complicated, first i came up against Airport express being crap, then my DAC being non USB, then Itunes on windows being bad due to Kmixer now It seems i am going to have to find some sotware to TAG my Rips. Sod this for a game of soldiers, I'm getting gandpas's old gramaphone out of the attic wind it up, stick on a 78, and crack open a beer.

    Paul
    Are all audiophiles obsessive compulsives or is this just a Stereo Type? Yorkshire UK

  13. #13

    Hey PaulYou're gonna have

    Hey Paul

    You're gonna have to updates Gramp's gramaphone with a new Tractrix horn!

  14. #14

    Problem Solved!

    Yipee I have found a way to get round problems of using Itunes in my study and of poor output from Airport express in other rooms.

    I am installing MacBook in my main system, upgrading amps to 2x1000W monoblocs and taking all the doors off of the hinges ;-)
    Are all audiophiles obsessive compulsives or is this just a Stereo Type? Yorkshire UK

  15. #15
    Site Founder The Computer Audiophile's Avatar
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    I love it !Look out

    I love it !

    Look out everyone we have another audiophile with a sense of humor. Thunktank and innertuber are turning this site into something actually enjoyable :-)

    Thanks guys!
    Chris Connaker

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  16. #16

    PARDON!

    SORRY CHRIS YOU WILL HAVE TO TYPE IN CAPS I SEEM TO HAVE GONE A LITTLE DEAF.

    Actually I think I have found a solution to my problems, I have just spent the evening in my study paying bills etc while listening to the new Trends DAC and AMP using Itunes. It sounds 300% better than the previous set up, so why was I getting hung up on the fact that Foobar and ASIO sounder marginally better. Due to this the no tags issue and some stability problems while running ASIO4all, have convinced me to stick with Itunes in my study. In a similar vain I think I will take your advice and go for a MacBook as opposed to a Mini, should make set up a doddle.

    Cheers

    Paul

    Are all audiophiles obsessive compulsives or is this just a Stereo Type? Yorkshire UK

  17. #17
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    GREAT TO HEAR PAUL :-)

    GREAT TO HEAR PAUL :-)
    Chris Connaker

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