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 Forum index » Advanced Topics » Puppy Derivatives
OLD: mpdPup - Simplified MPD Music Server/Jukebox - v0.9.2
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ldolse

Joined: 23 Oct 2009
Posts: 366

PostPosted: Sun 12 Aug 2012, 00:58    Post subject: Re: Volume control  

thisisvv wrote:
there is no one place i can control the volume as hardware and if i send it bit perfect even the software mpd client cant even control i tried even doing setting change in sound and made it to hardware software independent but is there any place i can control the volume in this....even tried alsa mixer that is not helping
Hi thisvv, it's a bit dangerous to have a setup where there is no hardware limiting the max volume to the amps - even getting this working with mpdPup, software glitches happen.

You can definitely get mpd's software volume control working. Whether or not the hardware volume control works is dependent on the hardware itself (does it even have an internal hardware volume, e.g. a dithered digital volume) and whether it's susceptible to a bug in mpdPup's wizards with regard to setting up a hardware volume control.

Simplest solution: re-run 'mpdwizard', choose sound settings, and enable the software volume control.

Slightly more difficult: re-run 'mpdwizard', choose sound settings, and enable the hardware volume control. If the control does not work, do the following:
Code:
nano /etc/mpd.conf
Hit ctrl-w, type wizard, and hit enter. Find the line that says mixer_type "hardware", and add one more line below it
Code:
mixer_device      "hw:1"
Change '1' to reflect whatever your card number is - if mixer_device is already there just delete the ',0' or ',1', at the end as I've discovered that doesn't work.
ctrl-x to exit, 'y' to save.

type 'save2flash' or 'reboot' to save the changes.
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multiblitz

Joined: 28 Jul 2012
Posts: 32

PostPosted: Sun 12 Aug 2012, 09:18    Post subject:  

I guess I need to take a break...just smoked the biostar motherboard somehow...so besides the Alix no motherboard left to experiment with.

The Alix is smooth and soft playing, but defintly a little less transparent and a bit hazy...compared against w7 64bit optimized for audio and jriver as well. the w7 setup is mich more transparent and powerful, has more air around anything, opens a windows. it lacks the sweetness and musicality of the alix a bit, but is far more dynamic and dramatic.

Eidt: By the way: My hypothesis is: It has nothing to do with MPDPUP, this is more the effect of the GREAT USB-Implementation of the dedicated SOTM-USB-CArd. This card makes the normal Windows Pc already sing and killed my Lynx 16e card....Would LOVE to use this with the Alix...could be a killer combo, but the only adapter I found (IM380) shall cost 299 $ Shocked

I ordered the voyage cf as well, but that was in the alix no plug and play at all. I parked that one.

It would be great to have a mpdpup version,

- which has a kernel that supports modern boards, ideally 64bit, so that volume can be used nearly lossless
- optimize the parameters mentioned plus some parameter on the lan buffers
- alsa

Last edited by multiblitz on Sun 12 Aug 2012, 10:54; edited 1 time in total
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wlowes

Joined: 07 Jun 2012
Posts: 49
Location: Toronto, Canada

PostPosted: Sun 12 Aug 2012, 09:30    Post subject: Volume Control  

I can imagine that a software volume control would be useful for testing. For longer term listening it has to have problems in sound quality. With the music signal attenuated, you are effectively running the noise floor of your DAC at full volume while attenuating the music. Effectively you have designed the perfect way to destroy the signal to noise ratio. Kind of the antithesis of why I would use the Alix as a dedicated transport.

Another way to test the system that I have used is to build a fixed shunt volume attenuator. One for each channel. Just takes a total of 4 resistors. 1/4W metal film is perfect. There are lots of sites that can show the values required for a given attenuation value such as -50db.

I can suggest the lightspeed attenuator as a very inexpensive DIY audiophile volume control. It is basically the shunt attenuator using variable resistors. You could power it from the same linear source used for the Alix. Like everything, a cheap 5v walwort will work for the lightspeed, but a well filtered linear supply will kick the music quality up a few notches.

post 939 in this link describes my experience and the circuit used. I am happily using this 5 years later. When my tube based monoblocks come online I'll need a preamp. I will build a lightspeed into that as it is the best. Laughing

http://www.diyaudio.com/forums/analog-line-level/80194-lightspeed-attenuator-new-passive-preamp-94.html#post1273484
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ldolse

Joined: 23 Oct 2009
Posts: 366

PostPosted: Sun 12 Aug 2012, 10:59    Post subject:  

@multiblitz, the next version will be sticking with the same kernel & drivers. After that I'll start looking at a build based on a 3.x kernel so hopefully that will improve compatibility with newer boards.

Regarding 64 bit, a 64 bit OS and a 64bit volume control are two entirely different things, and one isn't strictly required for the other. Either way mpd would need to explicitly support a high resolution volume control, switching to a 64bit OS won't make that happen automatically, and it can also be implemented on a 32bit OS. Because the primary benefit of 64bit is more memory address space I have yet to be convinced there is any inherent value in a 64bit OS for audio playback. Anyway, long story short, high res volume is an MPD feature, and you should be making that request there.

Regarding the other requests, most of those will be in the next version. I have not seen any discussions around LAN parameters that make any difference, so no plans to do anything there.

Are you using the SOTM card with the Alix, or was that just with the BioStar?
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i2k

Joined: 22 Jun 2012
Posts: 24

PostPosted: Sun 12 Aug 2012, 11:19    Post subject:  

I would never use software volume control , that's why I build my DAC with 12 steps passive attenuator (only costs about 25$) on the output.

That SOTM card is sooo expensive. Add Lucien's famous XMOS kit, all will cost about 500$ just for the USB connection only. Lot more expensive than the whole PC itself. Maybe someday I'll get there.

I wonder would it be necessary to have such expensive USB card if we already have the XMOS ?

@Multiblitz: there's alix board with PCI slot as used by Bryston BDP-1 player. Have you tried Win 7 + jplay ? IMHO, it sounds much better than jriver.
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multiblitz

Joined: 28 Jul 2012
Posts: 32

PostPosted: Sun 12 Aug 2012, 16:44    Post subject:  

Thanks for the hint...Board is already ordered...could becone a killer combo...the Sotm card is really great...I can use it only with a board with PCI...so, the current Alix (3d2) unfortunately not as adapters are really rare from minipci to pci..its cheaper to get a board with pci...did not know that before...

yes, I can use the volume of my buffalo dac as well, but to be honest: ipad control is a very cool thing...

On the sotm card...when your sytem gets better it is like playing with a razour sharp knife...you hear each little change much better and more dramatic. the sotm is a must when using usb audio. no comparison to a normal usb port. can be powered completely with its own psu, has its own reg on board, does not send 5v over the signal line if yu dont need it, etcetc
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thisisvv

Joined: 05 Jul 2012
Posts: 14

PostPosted: Mon 13 Aug 2012, 15:22    Post subject: Re: Volume Control  

wlowes wrote:
I can imagine that a software volume control would be useful for testing. For longer term listening it has to have problems in sound quality. With the music signal attenuated, you are effectively running the noise floor of your DAC at full volume while attenuating the music. Effectively you have designed the perfect way to destroy the signal to noise ratio. Kind of the antithesis of why I would use the Alix as a dedicated transport.

Another way to test the system that I have used is to build a fixed shunt volume attenuator. One for each channel. Just takes a total of 4 resistors. 1/4W metal film is perfect. There are lots of sites that can show the values required for a given attenuation value such as -50db.

I can suggest the lightspeed attenuator as a very inexpensive DIY audiophile volume control. It is basically the shunt attenuator using variable resistors. You could power it from the same linear source used for the Alix. Like everything, a cheap 5v walwort will work for the lightspeed, but a well filtered linear supply will kick the music quality up a few notches.

post 939 in this link describes my experience and the circuit used. I am happily using this 5 years later. When my tube based monoblocks come online I'll need a preamp. I will build a lightspeed into that as it is the best. Laughing

http://www.diyaudio.com/forums/analog-line-level/80194-lightspeed-attenuator-new-passive-preamp-94.html#post1273484


i think i need to make one now...this sounds the perfect solution...how hard is to make if i havent soldered in a decade....

V
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wlowes

Joined: 07 Jun 2012
Posts: 49
Location: Toronto, Canada

PostPosted: Mon 13 Aug 2012, 21:46    Post subject: Lightspeed  

V,
It is very simple, and dirt cheap. In its simplest form, it is a walwort power supply, a little circuit board with 4 resistors and 4 LDR + a 10k log pot.

There are kits sold on DIYAUDIO. Or you can get finished product from the inventor, GeorgeHIFI in Australia. His finished product still a deal at $495, but the diy version will not break $50. There is a circuit diagram on the page before my post.
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PET-240

Joined: 22 May 2012
Posts: 74

PostPosted: Tue 14 Aug 2012, 05:08    Post subject:  

There are multiple options about, Uriah- buildanamp.com , blues-warpspeed, SKA Audio, look about and see what suits, George's is the original though!
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thisisvv

Joined: 05 Jul 2012
Posts: 14

PostPosted: Tue 14 Aug 2012, 09:52    Post subject:  

@wlowes

thanks will look into it...50$ and 495 huge difference to atleast try once on your own...

@PET-240

Thanks Pet will look into it...

V
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thisisvv

Joined: 05 Jul 2012
Posts: 14

PostPosted: Wed 15 Aug 2012, 15:19    Post subject: Re: Lightspeed  

wlowes wrote:
V,
It is very simple, and dirt cheap. In its simplest form, it is a walwort power supply, a little circuit board with 4 resistors and 4 LDR + a 10k log pot.

There are kits sold on DIYAUDIO. Or you can get finished product from the inventor, GeorgeHIFI in Australia. His finished product still a deal at $495, but the diy version will not break $50. There is a circuit diagram on the page before my post.


I have a question....my current setup is

PC->DAC->Behringer DCX 2496 active crossover -> 6 channel amp -> Speaker

can i put sound attenuator between DAC and DCX or do i need a 6 channel sound attenuator
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PET-240

Joined: 22 May 2012
Posts: 74

PostPosted: Wed 15 Aug 2012, 22:10    Post subject:  

I would say yes on the output of the dac, you will be able to separate through the DCX. As the DAC will be an analogue out make sure you have the gain or output level to suit the DCX as the lightspeed etc are passive devices. Also the LDR's need to be matched, you can buy matched sets off Uriah at buildanamp, he is the only one I know of that does this.
What DAC are you running?
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thisisvv

Joined: 05 Jul 2012
Posts: 14

PostPosted: Thu 16 Aug 2012, 01:14    Post subject:  

PET-240 wrote:
I would say yes on the output of the dac, you will be able to separate through the DCX. As the DAC will be an analogue out make sure you have the gain or output level to suit the DCX as the lightspeed etc are passive devices. Also the LDR's need to be matched, you can buy matched sets off Uriah at buildanamp, he is the only one I know of that does this.
What DAC are you running?


currently audio-widget(http://www.diyaudio.com/forums/digital-source/185761-open-source-usb-interface-audio-widget.html) later i might use ODAC...
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multiblitz

Joined: 28 Jul 2012
Posts: 32

PostPosted: Fri 17 Aug 2012, 03:13    Post subject:  

OK, I got my Alix 1d2 with PCI-Slot yesterday. A very first impression (with SOTM-Card and standard switching power supply, no mods yets):

Impressive. A lot of the "haze" is gone. Unbelieveable how deep it makes a room, very 3 D, plays clearly not front-loaded, but more back-loaded.
A very smooth, soft presentation, very analogue-like,
at the same time crisp...you not only heard a singer, you feel him...how he breathes, how he concentrates for the next tone.

I played around with Bios-Setting....yes. we have a real bios now on the Alix...AMI...CPU-frequency down from 500 too 333...latency...etcetc. switched off the parallel and serial ports etc. Definetly: The sound stage changes. Not sure which setting I like best yet. But this is another lever to use to finetune the system...

Next: PSU will be x-changed against discrete version....comparison Standard USB-port vs Sotm USB-port...

UPdate: Did a first comparison...Standard USB-Port seems to be brighter sounding, more treble, but as well a bit less organic, less analogue, body is missing in the voices of singers, more normal hifi, but still very good. This Alix-Board sounds different than the 3d2.
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i2k

Joined: 22 Jun 2012
Posts: 24

PostPosted: Fri 17 Aug 2012, 11:28    Post subject:  

@multiblitz :
Glad that it works for you after several difficulties you had. Do you think your new Alix board (is that Alix 1D ?) with standard USB sounds better than 3D2 ?

Which one is better : your new Alix setup or your old Win + Jriver setup ?

I've been eyeing that Alix 1D, but the shipping to my country & custom tax is very expensive. I can get 3D2 locally but if you confirm that 1D is better, I'll ask my colleague to bring it over from Europe for me. Hopefully, before year's end I'll have one.

Oh man, this thread is sooo poisonous.
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