Using a pc for mp3s

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wushu2000

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Using a pc for mp3s will denon dac do or buy a dac

Hello all,
I currently have my pc hooked up to my denon 3910 receiver via an optical cable. Then I have my receiver connected to my Cary tube preamp and my MF amp. This is all sent to my Ascents. This is done so that I can use my receiver for ht and my preamp for music and use the same power amp.

I've been thinking of adding a dac so that I can feed my pc mp3s straight to my cary preamp. I was looking at Musical Fidelity's X-DAC V3. Would this give me better sound than using the denon's dacs? I encode all my mp3 with 256 vbr (variable bit rate) .
Thanks,
Duane
 
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Peter Hogan

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wushu2000 said:
Hello all,
I currently have my pc hooked up to my denon 3910 receiver via an optical cable. Then I have my receiver connected to my Cary tube preamp and my MF amp. This is all sent to my Ascents. This is done so that I can use my receiver for ht and my preamp for music and use the same power amp.

I've been thinking of adding a dac so that I can feed my pc mp3s straight to my cary preamp. I was looking at Musical Fidelity's X-DAC V3. Would this give me better sound than using the denon's dacs? I encode all my mp3 with 256 vbr (variable bit rate) .
Thanks,
Duane
Hi,
I would spend the money on a RAID storage system for the PC, and re-rip the songs as WAV files. They are larger than MP3's, but there is no sound quality loss from the CD original. MP3's lose much too much quality for my ML system, even at 256 vbr. I keep 2 ripped sets of my songs, one as WAV's, the other as MP3's for portable use (for work, iPod, etc.), where quality isn't as important. I believe you will get much more improvement in the sound if you have a better source (i.e. WAV), than by trying to make the best of the sound once it has been compromised by MP3 conversion, with the external DAC.

I recommend the RAID system as it allows you to recover your music if a hard drive dies, (and it will someday). I have a RAID 5 system, with four 250GB drives that give me 750GB of storage space. My collection as WAV's takes up about 600GB of this, the MP3 folder takes up another 60GB or so.

Peter
 
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summitgnp

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I would agree about going lossless having a bigger impact than switching DACs. I recommend using a lossless compression scheme such as Flac (my choice), Ape, or Apple lossless. Lossless compression requires about 60% of the space of a wav. file. Save your DAC $ for now and purchase the drive space necessary to hold your collection.

On can debate the usefulness of RAID for disaster contengency, as RAID will not save the day if a disaster/theft of your equipment occurs. I backup my Flac files to DVD and store in another city - cheaper than RAID and the impact of a failed recovery medium (bad RAID disk versus a bad DVD) has less impact. Plus if the house burns down I don't lose my music collection.
 

sleepysurf

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I second the recommendation for lossless compression (FLAC is my choice as well) and offsite archiving.
 

Peter Hogan

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I've looked at the lossless formats, and I still choose to go with the WAV format for its universal use, i.e. nearly all systems can play it, FLAC, ZIP, MLP, etc. are nowhere near as universal (yet).

I use RAID instead of backing up to DVD as the 600 GB of data would need over 120 DVD's (figuring 4.7GB/DVD). I still have all the original CD's as an ultimate "backup", should the need arise.

My .02 worth,
Peter
 
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Taz

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Is there any comparsions out there on the quality of the different lossless. I am trying to decide on a dormat now.
 

ASLayerAODsk

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comparison suggestion

take a cd that you own, rip it to wav, then encode it in whatever formats you want to try out...id suggest nothing less than lvl 5 compression flac's myself...but im biased :) also...find out what your speakers can do...and the hardware driving them too.
 
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