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Pepsican

HQ Player, NAA, OS and tweaks

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Pepsican   

Hi everyone

 

For a while, I planned on building a single audio computer ala CAPS. Then I posted a thread and Jud commented on some of points that got me to rethink my whole strategy. He basically in a few sentences got me to understand the concept of the player / NAA. But it also raised many questions for me.

 

I guess the player / NAA model I am most familar with is HQ Player. Let's start with my questions on that.

  • Can the NAA and the main PC run on different OS? One being e.g. Windows, the other Linux. I plan to use a Hardkernel Odroid as the NAA. Otherwise it would need to be a more expensive x64 based solution
  • If I understand correctly, the whole player / NAA concept is meant to separate the noisy decoding process away from feeding the DAC with a clean signal. The way I understand it, it would work because the connection runs over network, which would serve as block as no electrical signal gets transmitted unlike with USB. My thoughts therefore are that any tweaking (LPSU, minimize activity on the NAA, USB filters etc) should be concentrating around the NAA. The PC could be a plan standard box. Or am I wrong and things like AO optimizer, LPSU etc help as well when you apply them on the player?
  • On the website, I can find the Player package, but where is the NAA package and what are the minimum requirements?

 

That said, is there other software that has this NAA architecture? I believe JPLAY does allow for this too? But what else?

 

Thanks for your time!

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KunterK   

Hi...

 

My setup is: HQPlayer on a Mac (mini) and NAA is a Cubox i4Pro with Miska's image, running on battery power (from PPA Studio) connected via modified/clocked network switch (also PPA) which also runs on battery power. Result is audio bliss.

 

Cheers

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Miska   
[*]Can the NAA and the main PC run on different OS? One being e.g. Windows, the other Linux. I plan to use a Hardkernel Odroid as the NAA. Otherwise it would need to be a more expensive x64 based solution

 

Yes, that is commonly the case. In many cases some ARM-based device is used as a NAA.

 

[*]If I understand correctly, the whole player / NAA concept is meant to separate the noisy decoding process away from feeding the DAC with a clean signal. The way I understand it, it would work because the connection runs over network, which would serve as block as no electrical signal gets transmitted unlike with USB. My thoughts therefore are that any tweaking (LPSU, minimize activity on the NAA, USB filters etc) should be concentrating around the NAA. The PC could be a plan standard box. Or am I wrong and things like AO optimizer, LPSU etc help as well when you apply them on the player?

 

I don't have any special tweaks on the machines running HQPlayer, only the NAA ones are tweaked.

 

With typical copper ethernet you get transformer isolation at both ends of the chain. You can also go further and use optical ethernet for further isolation. Or using WiFi is another option, but it depends on a case whether this is less or more noisy than using copper.

 

[*]On the website, I can find the Player package, but where is the NAA package and what are the minimum requirements?

 

On the same page there is a download button for Network Audio Daemon.

 

There are no clearly defined minimum requirements. Lightest weight device I've run NAA on has been 400 MHz ARM9 with 64 MB of RAM. With 256 MB of RAM I've successfully used same CPU up to DSD256.

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firedog   

Hi-

1. OS of NAA and server can be different. Doesn't matter.

2. Agree about tweaks for NAA; lower priority for tweaks on PC.

3. NAA software links are found on home page links with HQP; look for Network Audio Daemon.

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Pepsican   
Hi-

1. OS of NAA and server can be different. Doesn't matter.

2. Agree about tweaks for NAA; lower priority for tweaks on PC.

3. NAA software links are found on home page links with HQP; look for Network Audio Daemon.

 

  1. Thanks for confirming.
  2. Which tweaks work best on the NAA? LPSU & USB clean-up ala Regen? I can't think of much else with a developer board as most things are fixed on the board, like the RAM. What about the player? OS optimisation, Disk drive?
  3. Thank you.

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firedog   
  1. Thanks for confirming.
  2. Which tweaks work best on the NAA? LPSU & USB clean-up ala Regen? I can't think of much else with a developer board as most things are fixed on the board, like the RAM. What about the player? OS optimisation, Disk drive?
  3. Thank you.

 

I tried a Windows PC (fanless CAPS 2 type, minimal processes, powered by LPS) as an NAA, it wasn't anything special. Then got a SOtM SMS-100, which is essentially a one board device running an audio only version of Linux (called sonicorbiter); with the same LPS, it sounds much better. I use a Regen/Wyrd in combo, but this sounded good without them. The LPS to the NAA made the biggest difference (as opposed to using a standard wall wart SMPS or a laptop like brick PS).

 

IMHO, that's the way to go. Player- depends on your preferences. The filtering of HQP sounds best to me, but for UI or Tidal integration reasons, I mostly use JRemote or LMS. In this setup no internal disc drive in the NAA. I'll probably buy the uRendu when it comes out, as I assume it will sound even better.

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Pepsican   
I tried a Windows PC (fanless CAPS 2 type, minimal processes, powered by LPS) as an NAA, it wasn't anything special. Then got a SOtM SMS-100, which is essentially a one board device running an audio only version of Linux (called sonicorbiter); with the same LPS, it sounds much better. I use a Regen/Wyrd in combo, but this sounded good without them. The LPS to the NAA made the biggest difference (as opposed to using a standard wall wart SMPS or a laptop like brick PS).

 

IMHO, that's the way to go. Player- depends on your preferences. The filtering of HQP sounds best to me, but for UI or Tidal integration reasons, I mostly use JRemote or LMS. In this setup no internal disc drive in the NAA. I'll probably buy the uRendu when it comes out, as I assume it will sound even better.

 

 

Hi

 

I'm thinking of the uRendu as well. Looks like a good idea, which is also why I want my NAA a bit flexible and not too expensive. When you use LMS, does it run on a PC and connect to the SMS-100? Also, what make LPSU do you use?

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firedog   
Hi

 

I'm thinking of the uRendu as well. Looks like a good idea, which is also why I want my NAA a bit flexible and not too expensive. When you use LMS, does it run on a PC and connect to the SMS-100? Also, what make LPSU do you use?

 

LMS runs on my server, my NAA is setup to work with it (squeezelite is installed on it); I'm using the Sonore Sig PS.

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4est   

Agreed. The Sonic Orbitor software was rock solid, and the ease of NAA<>LMS made it great for the household.

I'll probably buy the uRendu when it comes out, as I assume it will sound even better.

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elcorso   

I have some trouble running HQPlayer on a Mac and the NAA (networkaudiod) on a Win PC, in order to get ASIO support and Native DSD playing. This in two DACs I have: Lampi B7 (Amanero ASIO drivers) and exaSound e22 (exaSound ASIO drivers).

 

I guess there is an ASIO conflict with the two different ASIO drivers installed, because sometimes (not always) I get an strange SQ, mainly from the Lampi B7, after the exaSound ASIO drivers installation.

 

I'm far away from being a Windown user expert...!

 

Help appreciated !

 

Roch

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nikander   

Thanks a lot to the thread opener and answers so far - the same questions have been driving me around for a while.

I tried the SMS-100 therefore (posted that in the uRendu-thread already) with mixed experiences (too harsh for me).

Now I am wondering if this might have been caused by the ethernet connection used by me (Powerline attached to a Mac Book and the SMS-100 (driven by the SotM battery unit) via ethernet cables).

So 2 additional questions:

As far as I remember some people have stated here that the best sounding constellation was a direct ethernet connection between NAA (say the SMS-100) and a PC (with HQ Player).

But in this situation Superdad reported about difficulties of his Mac Mini-HQPlayer solution finding the NAA in the network.

Is it alternatively advisable to use a Lan filter?

 

regards

 

Christian

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Jabs1542   
I have some trouble running HQPlayer on a Mac and the NAA (networkaudiod) on a Win PC, in order to get ASIO support and Native DSD playing. This in two DACs I have: Lampi B7 (Amanero ASIO drivers) and exaSound e22 (exaSound ASIO drivers).

 

I guess there is an ASIO conflict with the two different ASIO drivers installed, because sometimes (not always) I get an strange SQ, mainly from the Lampi B7, after the exaSound ASIO drivers installation.

 

I'm far away from being a Windown user expert...!

 

Help appreciated !

 

Roch

 

Not that this helps you directly, but for a reference I have no problem flipping DSD back and forth between my Lynx and my Lampi, both ASIO using thier own drivers.

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Hi everyone

 

For a while, I planned on building a single audio computer ala CAPS. Then I posted a thread and Jud commented on some of points that got me to rethink my whole strategy. He basically in a few sentences got me to understand the concept of the player / NAA. But it also raised many questions for me.

 

I guess the player / NAA model I am most familar with is HQ Player. Let's start with my questions on that.

  • Can the NAA and the main PC run on different OS? One being e.g. Windows, the other Linux. I plan to use a Hardkernel Odroid as the NAA. Otherwise it would need to be a more expensive x64 based solution
  • If I understand correctly, the whole player / NAA concept is meant to separate the noisy decoding process away from feeding the DAC with a clean signal. The way I understand it, it would work because the connection runs over network, which would serve as block as no electrical signal gets transmitted unlike with USB. My thoughts therefore are that any tweaking (LPSU, minimize activity on the NAA, USB filters etc) should be concentrating around the NAA. The PC could be a plan standard box. Or am I wrong and things like AO optimizer, LPSU etc help as well when you apply them on the player?
  • On the website, I can find the Player package, but where is the NAA package and what are the minimum requirements?

 

That said, is there other software that has this NAA architecture? I believe JPLAY does allow for this too? But what else?

 

Thanks for your time!

 

With JPLAY it's called dualPC mode and both PCs have to run Windows

 

Cheers,

Marcin

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zorntel   
Miska,

I am using the 3.0.0 package on page Index of /bins/naa/cubox-i for my cubox. But I see much newer packages for NAA for other platforms. Do you plan to update the cubox image? Any advantages?

 

Thank you...

 

Just wanted to bump this question to Miska. Have a cubox-i 4x4 on order. Is the 3.0.0 package still ok...or is there something more current?

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Miska   
Just wanted to bump this question to Miska. Have a cubox-i 4x4 on order. Is the 3.0.0 package still ok...or is there something more current?

 

That should work, but other alternative (and more current at the moment) is to go with minimal Debian Stretch install and just install networkaudiod package on it. Debian Stretch officially supports CuBox-i, so if you are familiar with Linux already, it will keep you up to date at faster pace.

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zorntel   
That should work, but other alternative (and more current at the moment) is to go with minimal Debian Stretch install and just install networkaudiod package on it. Debian Stretch officially supports CuBox-i, so if you are familiar with Linux already, it will keep you up to date at faster pace.

 

I'm a mac user...and thus am used to using my unix with a GUI. Are there instructions somewhere on how to do the Debian Stretch/neworkaudiod install? I found some for the cubox 3.0.0 package install, looks like it is just a matter of copying the file on an appropriately prepared SD card...correct?

 

I'm having problems with getting smooth playback on SDM 256 up-sampling on anything other than redbox or native DSD256 files. Higher resolution PCM or DSD64 or 128 files make the CPU blow up to 200% and I get stuttering after the first 20 seconds or so...hopefully the NAA will isolate things.

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