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Audio Hardware / Re: Interview Time
Last post by Arnold B. Krueger -
Thank you Arnold. Very interesting.

Are there any modern power amps that you are fond of?

Lots of them.  You later on mention value. Generally the two best ways to get watts for good prices, and the two best ways to do that are would be AVRs and amplifiers for professionsl audio.  AVRs give you a lot of watts per dollar, but their maximum power output for channel might be on the low side. Amps for pro audio like Crowns, QSCs, and the like come in various power ranges that vary from a lot to totally humungeous.   Used within their ratings, they can both sound great.

Bob Carver's Phase Linear amps and TFM series amps are still very highly regarded and sought after on ebay. Good value (power) per dollar. I always respected his 'outside the box' approach in his engineering.

Carver does a lot of things these days that make me suspect of his sales efforts. For example, for years he went around suing speaker companies based on a patent that he had for a subwoofer. The patent was eventually found to be invalid for a number of reasons including the fact that there was prior art, some of which Carver had previously used in his own commercial products. That automatically invalidates the patent, but Carver picked mostly on small companies that would settle rather than go through an expensive court fight. Eventually, he picked on somebody with deep pockets who cleaned his clock in court. It was fraudulent bullying all along.

I have recently renovated my media and computer room. After that, I noticed that my speakers produced very much bass suddenly, which I attributed to their new placement.

Good call. The performance of a speaker is highly dependent on the room it is used in, and its location within that room can be as much or more important.

I couldn't figure out what exactly caused this

The sound quality of a speaker, especially at low frequencies is strongly influenced by the size of the room, its dimensions, how the surfaces are covered with reflective or absorptive materials, and the distance from the speaker to the various walls and corners.

I also didn't want to reposition all furniture and put them in their old positions, so I decided to look for cheap and easy ways to reduce bass.

The cheapest and easiest way to control bass is equalization. But, there are natural limitations to this because bass is influenced by the effects I just mentioned which are in 3 dimensions, but an equalizer can only control 1 dimension. So, you might get the bass right in one part of a room, but move around and thebass you hear might get worse.

I found many threads on coupling-decoupling techniques and decided to try that

Bad call.  Speakers are almost entirely coupled to the room by the sound coming out of the speakers (usually cones) and ports.

Things like pads and spikes are at best 10% solutions and are generally even less influential than that.

Bass is one of those things that is fairly easy to measure, and if you strengthen it or weaken it or make it deeper or shallower, the measurements change.  Ever see an article that shows how bass measurements change with things like spikes and pads?  I never have, and one reason is that there is not a lot of change to report.  Instead most such reports are based on colorful prose and poetry.  

There are strong effects on the human mind some call expectation effects, and others call placebo effects. The alleged benefits are almost always discerned and reported by means that are well quantified, even though changes in bass response are relatively easy to measure.

How about them apples? ;-)

3rd Party Plugins - (fb2k) / Re: foo_dumb
Last post by deus-ex -
Hi, what's the reason that you dumped playptmod, st3play, ft2play and bass.lib all of a sudden after all these years?
Why are always 4 spikes used instead of 3?
I dunno... Why does a chair have 4-legs?    Probably for stability...  It's easier to tip-over with 3-feet/legs.

...I'd always assumed those spikes were for carpet...

What can I say? The difference is unbelievable (for a sub-20€ mod, that is) - much cleaner bass response and less rumbling.
Please re-read TOS #8 and be careful about making such claims here.     I don't doubt that moving your speakers made a difference, but I'm skeptical about what problem was solved with the spikes.   But, what I think  doesn't matter...   The moderators are very strict about the rules and it greatly reduces the nonsense you get on "audiophile" sites.   You can talk about spikes, or moving your speakers, etc., but if you are going to make claims about sound quality you have to do the blind listening tests.
Audio Hardware / Re: Headphone fit
Last post by athegn -
 I have in ear phones but would like to avoid them if possible.

I suppose I am looking for a device like my Google Chromecast Audio that is battery powered (rechargeable by micro USB cable like my phone/camera) that includes a better DAC than that in my phone that then transmits the upgraded audio to bluetooth speakers.

My Chromecast is connected, via toshlink, to a Cambdidge DAC that is connected to my hifi.

I am looking for a portable version, of the above,  for use on the road; slightly lower sound quality acceptable but not as low as the phones audio out, using the phones internal DAC, when running wired headphones from the phone.

@ evgenetic and Cavaille: The Raspberry Pi3 is nice, but the missing "audio only" screen is not attractive. I'm used to browse foobar2k, start the album and listen to it. Switching on the TV for this simple 1 min. task - no thank you ;

You don't need to use the TV as a user interface at all, the Pi can be headless.

Just install an UPnP server/renderer on the Pi (e.g. as part of Volumio for an ultra-simple install, or look up upmpdcli), and control the audio from software on any PC, tablet or phone (look up UPnP control point on your platform of choice. Bubble UPnP is nice on Android, Kazoo or others on Windows, there is a lot of choice).
MQA Bob tells us digital as we know it is blurred and smeared until you add aliasing, remove the lower bits and wrap it in DRM.
Others trust only in DSD when it has to be digital.
What a mess :)
Hi all,
First, I know a million discussions addressing these questions probably exist, both on here and on other sites ...

Stop right there.

I will answer your question exactly  as asked in the title. What do I think about the debates? They are pantomime shows, in which Oh yes it is! and Oh no it isn't are repeated ad infinitum just as they were in the same show the previous year. I've taken part, to some extent, on both sides over the years. Now it's boring.

Sorry, but you did ask. Literally.
Well, I found a solution... I recompiled LAME with a minor change.

I wrote a blog post about the problem and solution here:

When LAME writes an ID3v2 comment tag, it seems to set the language to either some unicode string, or if the command-line switch --id3v2-latin1 is used, to "XXX." There doesn't seem to be an option to set it to something else. In either case, iTunes will not import this field.

My wife Grace said "your encoder is lame."

I tried to use the id3v2 command-line tool to add the tags to my MP3 file instead. Since I'm making a script, I have no qualms about using two command-line tools instead of one, if that works. But id3v2 seems to have the same problem. It supports the --id3v2-only switch, but there does not seem to be any equivalent of the --id3v2-latin1 switch, so I can't get it to write an iTunes-compatible comment field either.

My workaround was to rebuild LAME, replacing several hard-coded instances of "XXX" with "eng." This is not exactly a bug to report, since I'm not sure that LAME is actually "wrong" per se, according to the standard. But I can't fix the issue in iTunes. And like it or not, if I want maximum compatibility, I have to generate files that work well with iTunes.

A better solution would probably be to give LAME more options. Specifically for this problem an option to set the comment language would be nice. I would hesitate to add a specific switch like --workarounditunes which just forced the comment language to "eng," but maybe the ability to set the comment language would be useful for other folks, while providing a workaround for this compatibility problem.
AAC - General / faac 1.29.7
Last post by knik -
New version with better support for higher bitrates.
This time the binary package contains changelog and help.txt
Please test and report: