Tutorial - Lies, Damn Lies and USB DAC technical measurements

Discussion in 'Measurement Techniques Discussion' started by atomicbob, Feb 11, 2018.

  1. Luckbad

    Luckbad Traded in a unicorn for a Corolla

    Friend
    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2015
    Likes Received:
    3,427
    Dislikes Received:
    6
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Laguna Hills, CA
    Home Page:
    IAO, and O stands for Operator?

    Idiotic Amateur Operator

    Inadequate Asinine Operator

    Insignificant Asshole Operator

    Incoherent Abominable Operator

    Ignorant Acrimonious Operator
     
    9suns, captkirk and Elnrik like this.
  2. Ali-Pacha

    Ali-Pacha Friend

    Friend
    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2015
    Likes Received:
    261
    Dislikes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    63
    This discussion across three fora is a bit difficult to read :D

    Ali
     
    Thad E Ginathom and 9suns like this.
  3. Ringingears

    Ringingears Honorary BFF

    Friend
    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2015
    Likes Received:
    3,823
    Dislikes Received:
    3
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Northern Californium Valley
    “Paranoia strikes deep. Into your heart it will creep. It starts when you’re always afraid. Mention SBAF and the man comes and deletes you away” - Buffalo Springfield (sort of).

    Although it seems HF has become paranoid and afraid of SBAF. We have too much sunshine (atomicbob), and they seem afraid of it’s disinfecting effect.
     
    Dino likes this.
  4. MLegend

    MLegend Friend

    Friend
    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2015
    Likes Received:
    166
    Dislikes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    43
    Location:
    Northwest Florida
    Am I not supposed to be using Asio4all V2 with Gungnir Multibit?
     
  5. Kattefjaes

    Kattefjaes Mostly Harmless

    Friend
    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2016
    Likes Received:
    5,163
    Dislikes Received:
    41
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    London, UK
    Honestly? No. Better off using WASAPI. ASIO4ALL is a compatibility layer sitting on top of WDM Kernel Streaming, which is quite an old and crufty thing, and best avoided.
     
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2018
    Thad E Ginathom and Ringingears like this.
  6. MLegend

    MLegend Friend

    Friend
    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2015
    Likes Received:
    166
    Dislikes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    43
    Location:
    Northwest Florida
    Interesting. I thought it operated the same as WASAPI. Thank you for the information.
     
  7. Kattefjaes

    Kattefjaes Mostly Harmless

    Friend
    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2016
    Likes Received:
    5,163
    Dislikes Received:
    41
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    London, UK
    You're welcome.

    Since the Gungnir Multibit doesn't have a well-behaved native ASIO driver*, WASAPI is a better option where apps support it.


    * It's not exactly designed for racking up in a studio primarily, after all. No dig at the schiitheads implied.
     
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2018
    A1Gear likes this.
  8. rtaylor76

    rtaylor76 Can't wipe his tag

    Friend
    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2015
    Likes Received:
    2,584
    Dislikes Received:
    91
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Nashville, TN
    Home Page:
    And people told me over and over (on other forums mind you) that there was no difference between WASPI and ASIO and both are "bit perfect", yet I could hear a difference. KS was just a crude way of doing things similarly, but every now and again it would foul things up with my device and lock it up. WASPI to me was the best, but sometimes you would want to switch to hear a YouTube video or something and have to stop Foobar2000, switch to WDM or ASIO, refresh the YouTube page, and then you could play the video.

    And you Mac users with Core Audio can avoid all this.

    I'm glad that I use Linux and a Pi and a S/PDIF hat that uses a transformer coupled output. Just straight I2S straight from the board straight into a chip that converts to S/PDIF. No drivers required. That and it serves one purpose, not multiple.

    Note, the ASIO4All was created for using normal audio devices with recording software like Cubase and Nuendo. Those softwares only used ASIO for I/O at that time, so users sound a way to simulate a normal soundcard to appear as an ASIO sound card.

    And lastly, I know the other reviewer was NOT using ASIO is because he was playing straight out of Windows Media Player, which cannot use ASIO devices.
     
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2018
    Elnrik likes this.
  9. Senorx12562

    Senorx12562 Case of the mondays

    Friend
    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2015
    Likes Received:
    2,703
    Dislikes Received:
    52
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Limbo
    One of my frustrations with Sonarworks' True-Fi is that it offers no ASIO option, and the WASAPI option included will ONLY output at 48khz, regardless of source sample rate. Any source material not natively at that sample rate requires changing the sample rate (using jrmc20) of any non 48k material (and I only have 1 album at 24/48), even 44.1 must be upconverted to be played. So I am forced to choose between changing the sample rate for all but 1 of my 2000 or so albums (mostly up of course, as I only own 25 albums with higher sample rates than 44.1k) or using their direct sound option.

    Seems like a weird choice for a product that probably will never be purchased by a non-audiophool...I mean ...phile. While they claim compatability with sample rates up to 96k, that is only true in direct sound mode. Even weirder is that when I told them about it they said it wasn't possible. Guess I am just an idiot being the implication I suppose. I've always tried to avoid changing the native sample rate of my music for playback, but it is either I choose how to fuck with it or let Windows decide. 1st world problem, right?
     
  10. LetMeBeFrank

    LetMeBeFrank Won't tell anyone my name is actually Francis

    Friend
    Joined:
    Aug 4, 2017
    Likes Received:
    2,911
    Dislikes Received:
    7
    Trophy Points:
    93
    Location:
    Jackson, Mi
    Fantastic post, @atomicbob. I was wondering if you were going to post some type of response to that guy using your measurements for his own gain. You did not disappoint!

    Thanks for this, I am still using FB2K and I just installed the WASAPI component. I tried using JRMC but I couldn't stand the interface. After using the DarkOne4Mod v1 skin for so long it felt like going back to the 90s trying to use JRMC. Are there any players out there with actual modern user interfaces?

    UI screenshot:
    [​IMG]
     
    Ringingears and SoupRKnowva like this.
  11. Senorx12562

    Senorx12562 Case of the mondays

    Friend
    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2015
    Likes Received:
    2,703
    Dislikes Received:
    52
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Limbo
    Just goes to show ya, changed to jrmc because I couldn't stand the f2k UI. Hilarious.
     
  12. J Seymour

    J Seymour Rando

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2016
    Likes Received:
    32
    Dislikes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    13
    LetMeBeFrank likes this.
  13. Ali-Pacha

    Ali-Pacha Friend

    Friend
    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2015
    Likes Received:
    261
    Dislikes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    63
    Jitter and THD look like they are in all case way under any audible threshold, no matter how strict measurement protocols are. But there are still two things I don't understand in all this.

    - Crossover "glitch". Mike says it was fixed by a firmware update on Yggdrasil, and Bifrost Multibit / Modi Multibit / Gungnir Multibit did have this update from the beginning. But there's still a bit of something there

    Modi Multibit @ -70db
    [​IMG]

    Bifrost Multibit @ -70db
    [​IMG]

    Gungnir Multibit @ -90db
    [​IMG]

    Yggdrasil @-90db (before update I think) :
    [​IMG]

    So, is this thing unavoidable because of the R2R technology no matter the firmware, and is this audible in any way, especially looking at -70db stuff on Modi Multibit / Bifrost Multibit ?

    - Most interrogating, the linearity, that looks pretty bad...at least far away from "true xx bit resolution" speech from Schiit :

    Modi Multibit :
    [​IMG]

    Bifrost Multibit :
    [​IMG]

    Gungnir Multibit :
    [​IMG]

    Yggdrasil :
    [​IMG]

    There's no logical hierarchy looking at bit depth (Modi Multibit better than Bifrost Multibit, Gungnir Multibit better than Yggdrasil), and figures are far from said bit depth of each unit, even with something looser than 0.1 db error criteria from amirm. So what do these measurements mean ?

    Any input welcome|\/|

    Ali
     
    trl, monacelli, ultrabike and 8 others like this.
  14. Arun Kumar

    Arun Kumar Friend

    Friend
    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2017
    Likes Received:
    184
    Dislikes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    43
    Location:
    Chennai, India
    Measurement noob here. Thanks for your post. I understand that while making comparisons between dacs maintaining a consistent set of parameters is necessary, but is that all that matters? How would you pick a set of parameters which when used will show the characteristics of a dac in a fair and representative manner?
     
  15. Collusion

    Collusion Friend

    Friend
    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2017
    Likes Received:
    604
    Dislikes Received:
    2
    Trophy Points:
    93
    Location:
    Finland
    Actually, the crossover distortion can be avoided by using separate ladders for positive and negative values. R2R chips that do not share this kind of architecture unavoidably suffer from this glitch.

    It is hard to say how exactly does this discontinuity manifest itself in the sound, but If I had to guess, this is the reason some people describe Schiit's MB conventers having a grey background / haze. (this is purely my spelucation)
     
    Ali-Pacha likes this.
  16. lm4der

    lm4der A very good sport - Friend

    Friend
    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2015
    Likes Received:
    1,444
    Dislikes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Seattle, WA
    Wow. I have never seen these linearity graphs before. Bifrost Multibit really looks bad. I am frankly pretty surprised in a bad way.
     
  17. sorrodje

    sorrodje Carla Bruni's other lover - Friend

    Staff Member Friend MZR
    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2015
    Likes Received:
    2,853
    Dislikes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Dijon / Burgundy / France / EU
    @atomicbob : Is there any chance you could measure the same dac (at least one ) driven by a Linux based OS ?
     
    Priidik likes this.
  18. Kattefjaes

    Kattefjaes Mostly Harmless

    Friend
    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2016
    Likes Received:
    5,163
    Dislikes Received:
    41
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    London, UK
    Hah, I switched because the VST host options were so buggy. That was a world of pain.

    (I don't regret it, I've really come to value some of the odder features, and the UI made tidying metadata a lot easier and quicker when I was having an epic ripathon. JRMC is a pretty good deal.)
     
    Senorx12562 and Elnrik like this.
  19. Kattefjaes

    Kattefjaes Mostly Harmless

    Friend
    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2016
    Likes Received:
    5,163
    Dislikes Received:
    41
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    London, UK
    That said, didn't people hear mich blacker backgrounds with the Gumbreya? Also doesn't the analogue 2 upgrade for Yggdrasil reportedly help with the "greyness"? (All hearsay, haven't done the comparisons myself)

    If so, it's possible that "greyness" is partly down the the actual outputs on these DACs too?

    Paging @Torq - you've heard both, right?
     
  20. GoodEnoughGear

    GoodEnoughGear Evil Dr. Shultz‎

    Friend
    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2015
    Likes Received:
    2,449
    Dislikes Received:
    11
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Cape Town, South Africa
    And I switched back to Fb2k because JRMC's VST host hangs on portable installs! And I hate the way JRMC wants to take liberties with my metadata by default.

    Swings and roundabouts...
     

Share This Page