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22
Polls / Re: Headphone Poll: HD800s vs Sony MDR-Z1R for Classical
Last post by Cavaille -
I've noticed how audiophiles always tend to rail against the use of equalizers (perhaps it's because it exposes the myths they like to believe)

Audiophiles lack technical knowledge. If they wouldn't, they'd understand that the tweaks they continue to buy in order to change the sound might be had far cheaper by simply using an EQ. I've never understood if they actually have any reason or if they're simply ignorant.

Based on your advice I did some tweaking in Foobar's own EQ UI element. My god! It's amazing how our perception of clarity is determined by equalization. Currently I have the cheapest 3 dollar set of headphones you could imagine. And I thought they were muddled and basically irredeemably crappy. Now after lowering the lower frequencies and increasing the high frequency, they sound like an entirely different pair of headphones.

Congratulations! :) And now research their actual frequency response and then try to linearize it by using an EQ ;)

That's interesting. From what I hear they fix some of the issues such as lack of bass which the HD600 had yet still have better highs than the HD650. And because they're only 150ohm they should be easier to drive and less DAC/Amp reliant.
Then again I was told that by the same audiophiles who told me to rush out and buy the HD800s, so at this point I'm doubting everything I've heard from these people.

Yes, you should. The difference between them and (most) of the people here is that the people recommending the HD-800 have faith while the people here have facts. I understood that only a few years ago so and it took me longer than necessary.

And the HD-600 doesn't have a lack of bass. Just look at the frequency response, you can find it anywhere. Frequencies below 60 Hz are attentuated but "bass" starts a lot higher than that.

But if I understand you correctly there should be no audible benefit among high quality DAC/amps? So for instance the 1000$ RME ADI-2 over the 400$ Schiit Jotunheim?

I really don't know. It depends if one of them colours the sound, if both do that or if none do that. But their marketing makes me suspicious.
23
Scientific Discussion / SLAC - Simple Lossless Audio Compressor
Last post by bryant -
After dealing with some of the complexities of WavPack, I started to wonder whether it would be possible to create a basic lossless audio compressor in just a few hundred lines that was very easy to understand, really fast and CPU-friendly, and didn't totally suck performance-wise. Something that could be translated into a different language or even implemented in hardware without much effort.

The result is SLAC, and before anyone gets mad, this is not a new or replacement audio compression format. It's just a for-fun project to demonstrate how lossless audio compression works and how simple it can be. There's a little command-line front-end to convert to/from WAV files, but the resulting SLAC files are just for demo...they do not support error checking, metadata or seeking (haha, just like the first WavPack 20 years ago).

And just FYI, it performs in the same ballpark as Shorten or FLAC -0, so there's no threat of anyone adopting it.

Enjoy...  :)

https://github.com/dbry/slac
25
WavPack / Re: Small DSD/DFF compression test: WavPack vs xz
Last post by bryant -
Thanks for posting these test results! They pretty much match my expectations. And hey guru...nice to see you're still around!

One of the first things I noticed when I started working on DSD compression (which, at the time, had nothing to do with WavPack) is that Bzip2 actually did a pretty good job; in fact it was a while before I had anything that beat it! And this makes sense because of the noise-shaping in DSD, you almost never get long sequences of 1's or 0's; instead the bit is always changing, so some bytes values (like 0xAA) are much more common than other values (like 0xFF). Just taking advantage of the relative frequency of byte values give decent compression of DSD.

The “normal” DSD compression mode of WavPack is byte-oriented also, but unlike complex compressors like bzip2, it does not use large dictionaries to achieve good compression because that would require large blocks (and I wanted to be able to do short, independently decodable blocks for seeking). I also wanted it to be simple and fast, so the fact that it beats general-purpose compressors at all but their highest settings is actually not bad.

What's kind of cool is the default DSD mode actually makes not a terrible general-purpose compressor! You can try it by specifying “--raw-pcm=2822400,1,1” on the command-line.
26
MP3 - General / Re: 100% assembly coded mpeg-2/mp3 decoder
Last post by saratoga -
Portable devices usually use highly optimized embedded decoders for platforms like arm, mips, hexagon, etc.

For desktop, an assembly optimized decoder would be nice if it targets modern x86 variants. If it's old 32 bit code, that's a lot less interesting. I don't think there is much interest in optimizing desktop decoders anymore however. Multicore processors have largely made that irrelevant.
27
WavPack / Re: How to properly pack DSF files into WavPack?
Last post by Porcus -
Yeah, that is another reason why you should use WavPack for these files: a reasonably well supported format that does a good job AND supports the essential features: tagging, error detection, ... is it fair to say that WavPack is virtually unrivalled for the purpose?
[I edited "usual features" to "essential features" because ALAC-in-MP4 is too retarded to be checksum-aware ...]

Also, fb2k can - by way of some component - resample on-the-fly in case you use digital output to a device that does not support that sample rate.
29
Support - (fb2k) / Re: fb2k 1.4.2 cannot play stream with a session variable in the URL, 1.3.2 works OK
Last post by loz -
I guess you may not be using a proxy, I am. Sorry, forgot to mention this small but important detail!

Perhaps Apache webproxy refuses to accept "1.x" as a valid header? Not sure, would be slightly unreasonable if so. I can't see anything else obviously wrong but I can't see exactly how fb2k v1.4.2 is trying to handshake the connection as I don't control our corporate proxies.
I doubt you're going to find the issue without being able to look at the server logs. Something in the server configuration is probably rejecting your connection and debugging on foobar's end probably won't help you. It very well could be something as stupid as rejecting the "1.x" as a valid header or could be something completely unrelated. Firewall even. Going to be difficult to narrow it down without the server log.

However if I specify an alternate Squid HTTP proxy, both fb2k versions work. However that's not desirable for a few reasons (including Squid proxy sort of breaking playback when ICY dynamic track titles are enabled).
I don't seem to have this problem using a squid proxy when dynamic track titles are enabled. Does that happen regularly on all streams with dynamic metadata? Is it after a specific amount of time that this happens? Is it a specific stream codec? Could it be something in the squid config causing the problem? If you have access to squid's logs, do they tell you anything? Have you tried running a clean portable install to see if a component could somehow be causing the breaking in playback?
30
Support - (fb2k) / Re: fb2k 1.4.2 cannot play stream with a session variable in the URL, 1.3.2 works OK
Last post by christopher -
I guess you may not be using a proxy, I am. Sorry, forgot to mention this small but important detail!

In both clients, I'm inheriting browser proxy settings, and in turn the browsers use a PAC. We have various proxy servers, some intended for proxying traffic for specific domains. In this case, an Apache webproxy listening on port 81 is being correctly selected by fb2k.

The only difference I can see from Wireshark is in the headers:

fb2k v1.4.2 sends "User-Agent: foobar2000/1.x"
fb2k v1.3.2 sends "User-Agent: foobar2000/1.3.20"

Perhaps Apache webproxy refuses to accept "1.x" as a valid header? Not sure, would be slightly unreasonable if so. I can't see anything else obviously wrong but I can't see exactly how fb2k v1.4.2 is trying to handshake the connection as I don't control our corporate proxies.

If I directly specify the same proxy server (in Networking -> Proxy server) and choosing 'Specify proxy address' it still doesn't work. However if I specify an alternate Squid HTTP proxy, both fb2k versions work. However that's not desirable for a few reasons (including Squid proxy sort of breaking playback when ICY dynamic track titles are enabled).

Is there a debug mode I can enable in fb2k to log its network internals while it sets up proxy connections? I've got a wireshark from my machine and can send privately, don't wish to share publicly as it obviously has details of our corporate network.
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