It is currently Wed Oct 01, 2014 6:16 am

All times are UTC - 8 hours




Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 12 posts ] 
Author Message
 Post subject: Basic Quality Build Music Server Only
PostPosted: Fri Mar 29, 2013 12:04 pm 
Offline

Joined: Thu Mar 28, 2013 9:52 pm
Posts: 2
In our new [dreamed of] stereo I would like to feed the integrated amp - via a DAC - with both a cd transport and a (dedicated) Music Server. The Music Server must be silent, and horizontal, to fit in with the rest of the stereo components. I would like to use an SSD just for the operating system. The HardDrive would be external (SATA? Firewire? USB?).....Hopefully this will bring down the heat dissipation requirements [at least]. Also, just in case I wanted to use a small monitor to view/administer the songs, would an onboard video card work?.....This is just the start of my "thinkin"....So there will probably be more questions.....I am glad I stumbled on this site. I bet there will be an increasing number of people interested in quiet Music Server solutions.....Thanks in advance for any advice on components, or telling me I am nuts....bill.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Basic Quality Build Music Server Only
PostPosted: Sat Mar 30, 2013 6:13 am 
Offline
SPCR Reviewer

Joined: Sat Nov 23, 2002 6:33 am
Posts: 8636
Location: Sunny SoCal
No need for a monitor. You run your server "headless" and access from any other local computer using MS Remote Desktop, or one of the third-party solutions. Onboard video supplied by the board/CPU is more than enough.

You can easily build yourself something along these lines:

http://www.computeraudiophile.com/section/c-p-s-489/

_________________
Main Box: Intel i3-3225, Intel DH77EB, 16GB Corsair RAM, 256GB Samsung 830, SS360GP PSU, CM PS07 case.
Music Server: Intel DH77EB + i3-3220, 2xSamsung 2TB F4, Pico PSU, Fractal Define Mini, 2xScythe Fans @250 rpm.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Basic Quality Build Music Server Only
PostPosted: Sun Mar 31, 2013 1:57 am 
Offline

Joined: Wed Jul 12, 2006 10:29 am
Posts: 567
Location: de_DE
There are quite a few requirements in there so I will break it down a bit:
A silent, even a no moving parts silent, computer without huge 3D graphic needs can be done. The best way to do it is in a case that acts as a CPU cooler like the ones in the link to computeraudiphiles above. Do you need one with an optical drive to rip your CDs?

How much space do you need?
An uncompressed CD is 650MB, loss less compression cuts the size in half. Examples what 80€ buys you in storage space (with loss less compression): 120GB SSD -> 360 Albums (You will want to install your operating system and software here, so it's more like 100GB -> 300Albums), 1TB notebook drive -> 3000 Albums, 2TB desktop drive -> 6000 Albums.
Speed is not important for music storage. The speed of all drives exceeds 50MB/s in all cases, the bitrate of uncompressed CD quality audio is ~0.17 MB/s.
SSDs have no moving parts and are completely silent, but they are expensive.
Hard drives have moving parts, 3.5" drives are louder and cheaper, 2.5" notebook drives are slower and less noisy (in general).

How do you want to connect the drive(s)?
Internally (SATA) you will want only a SSD, you will definitely hear a 3.5" drive and a 2.5" drive could be audible over low volume music.
External connection (USB, Firewire, eSATA) is easy and the drives are portable, but the cables have a very limited length (1m-1,5m). You would likely still hear the drives.
Networking would be my choice. Either run a network cable to where you put the drives or use wireless. You need an external enclosure (NAS). You can put it far away from your listening station so you don't hear it and use the larger, cheaper 3.5" drives. Synology and Qnap both make good home NAS systems. The Synology DS213 Air is the only one I could find that has built in wireless. It is a good place to start, it holds two 3.5" drives and has a low power consumption (8W-18W depending on activity and drives). All you need is an electric outlet, you can put it almost anywhere.

How do you want to connect your DAC?
I don't have audiophile grade equipment. The onboard sound on my last mainboard was terrible so I bought a sound card and I could hear the difference. My surround system has an integrated DAC and connects via Toslink. This setup is simple and not electrically connected.
A good USB connection to the DAC is superior because it has zero jitter. Excess jitter can cause audible distortions, low jitter is inaudible. "Low" is not precise and it depends on the rest of your equipment and your ears.
USB is superior, but I wonder if it's the kind of audiophile obsessions that benefits dogs and bats only :lol:. Poeple on the audiophile forums might disagree.
I would start with SP/DIF and if you can hear distortions upgrade to the high grade USB equipment outlined in audiophile's system build.

_________________
Lian Li V600, Asus P77Z-M Pro, i5-3570K 4.4GHz with Scythe Orochi, 140mm Slipstream 500RPM and Mugen2 115X Bolt through kit,
Evga GTX 670 FTW+ 4GB with Thermalright Spitfire and Thermalright TY-150 500-800RPM, Seasonic 460W Platinum Fanless


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Basic Quality Build Music Server Only
PostPosted: Sun Mar 31, 2013 2:54 am 
Offline

Joined: Fri Mar 14, 2008 5:18 am
Posts: 498
Location: London, UK
boost wrote:
How do you want to connect your DAC?
I don't have audiophile grade equipment. The onboard sound on my last mainboard was terrible so I bought a sound card and I could hear the difference. My surround system has an integrated DAC and connects via Toslink. This setup is simple and not electrically connected.
A good USB connection to the DAC is superior because it has zero jitter. Excess jitter can cause audible distortions, low jitter is inaudible. "Low" is not precise and it depends on the rest of your equipment and your ears.
USB is superior, but I wonder if it's the kind of audiophile obsessions that benefits dogs and bats only :lol:. Poeple on the audiophile forums might disagree.
I would start with SP/DIF and if you can hear distortions upgrade to the high grade USB equipment outlined in audiophile's system build.
USB is "superior" to optical toslink? How do the audio-I-can-hear-my-cables-fart-philes draw that conclusion?


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Basic Quality Build Music Server Only
PostPosted: Sun Mar 31, 2013 3:11 am 
Offline

Joined: Wed Jul 12, 2006 10:29 am
Posts: 567
Location: de_DE
Cistron wrote:
boost wrote:
How do you want to connect your DAC?
I don't have audiophile grade equipment. The onboard sound on my last mainboard was terrible so I bought a sound card and I could hear the difference. My surround system has an integrated DAC and connects via Toslink. This setup is simple and not electrically connected.
A good USB connection to the DAC is superior because it has zero jitter. Excess jitter can cause audible distortions, low jitter is inaudible. "Low" is not precise and it depends on the rest of your equipment and your ears.
USB is superior, but I wonder if it's the kind of audiophile obsessions that benefits dogs and bats only :lol:. Poeple on the audiophile forums might disagree.
I would start with SP/DIF and if you can hear distortions upgrade to the high grade USB equipment outlined in audiophile's system build.
USB is "superior" to optical toslink? How do the audio-I-can-hear-my-cables-fart-philes draw that conclusion?

USB to DAC vs. USB to SPDIF then DAC

_________________
Lian Li V600, Asus P77Z-M Pro, i5-3570K 4.4GHz with Scythe Orochi, 140mm Slipstream 500RPM and Mugen2 115X Bolt through kit,
Evga GTX 670 FTW+ 4GB with Thermalright Spitfire and Thermalright TY-150 500-800RPM, Seasonic 460W Platinum Fanless


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Basic Quality Build Music Server Only
PostPosted: Sun Mar 31, 2013 3:29 am 
Offline

Joined: Fri Mar 14, 2008 5:18 am
Posts: 498
Location: London, UK
boost wrote:
Cistron wrote:
USB is "superior" to optical toslink? How do the audio-I-can-hear-my-cables-fart-philes draw that conclusion?

USB to DAC vs. USB to SPDIF then DAC
Ahh, so the mysterious clock rate is the culprit. Thanks! :) Oh well, unless I get a USB DAC and put them side-by-side I doubt I'd notice a difference (if at all).


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Basic Quality Build Music Server Only
PostPosted: Sun Mar 31, 2013 7:43 am 
Offline
Moderator

Joined: Thu Oct 06, 2005 4:36 am
Posts: 4637
Location: Monterey Bay, CA
After wading through all of the linked audiophile hyperbole, my gut tells me I'd rather have optical isolation (Toslink) and a well made DAC with a decent clock recovery circuit than with a USB isolation circuitry/device.

_________________
1080p Gaming build: i5-4670K, Mugen 4, MSI Z87-G45, MSI GTX 760 2GB Gaming, 8GB 1866 RAM, Samsung Evo 250GB, WD Red 2TB, Samsung DVD burner, Fractal Define R4, Antec True Quiet 140 (2 front + rear) case fans, Seasonic X-560. 35-40W idle, 45-55W video streaming, 170-200W WoW, 200-230W Rift, 318W stress test (Prime95 + Furmark)


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Basic Quality Build Music Server Only
PostPosted: Sun Mar 31, 2013 8:40 am 
Offline
Moderator

Joined: Thu Oct 06, 2005 4:36 am
Posts: 4637
Location: Monterey Bay, CA
Another couple of thoughts:

1) Get an Apple TV or other media appliance with optical output and network connectivity for ~$100 and a few watts. Throw the library onto a PC/server elsewhere in the house.

2) Get a small footprint computer, like the Mac Mini, add an external CD drive and storage as needed.

_________________
1080p Gaming build: i5-4670K, Mugen 4, MSI Z87-G45, MSI GTX 760 2GB Gaming, 8GB 1866 RAM, Samsung Evo 250GB, WD Red 2TB, Samsung DVD burner, Fractal Define R4, Antec True Quiet 140 (2 front + rear) case fans, Seasonic X-560. 35-40W idle, 45-55W video streaming, 170-200W WoW, 200-230W Rift, 318W stress test (Prime95 + Furmark)


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Basic Quality Build Music Server Only
PostPosted: Sun Mar 31, 2013 2:14 pm 
Offline

Joined: Thu Mar 28, 2013 9:52 pm
Posts: 2
Thanks for all the great advice and observations! I will try and and answer the questions that arose out of your answers, and maybe provide more insight in what I am trying to achieve:

Ralf - Thanks for the Onboard Video advice. We plan to use our Android phone, or an IPad....But, may add a small monitor. And, ComputerAudiophile is a great site for build info....Bookmarked!

Boost - Our plan is to use an SSD for the Operating System and an external (1TB) HD for the music files. I would convert our CDs to FLAC on our regular computer and transfer it to our Music Server via another external HD [which will also serve as the backup drive]. Thanks for the info on HD noise....Looks like it will be a external notebook drive - If I am correct that the external HD noise will not be an issue if the Music Server stuff is situated with the rest of the stereo equipment. The external drive will be connected to the Server with a short SATA? Firewire? USB? cable. I would like to connect the Server to the DAC with, at least, USB3. It appears SPDIF is the best way to go (so far), but a USB-SPDIF converter is probably not worth it.

For me, the Quality/Value of having the Music Server physically located with the Stereo is the best way to manage my music, into the future.....I know adding a dedicated music server increases the cost (as opposed to streaming remotely from a computer), but I think it is a better solution "Skookum-wise" and "Sound Quality-wise".

Thanks again to all who responded...bill


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Basic Quality Build Music Server Only
PostPosted: Tue Apr 16, 2013 6:04 am 
Offline

Joined: Mon Feb 04, 2013 9:56 am
Posts: 50
Why not just buy a dedicated network audio device? Marantz do one, Arcam do one, Denon do one. Probably plenty of others out there too. Or if you're in an iTunes environment, why not use the optical digital output of the Airport Express?

If you want pure MP3 to noise converter, then why reinvent the wheel?

_________________
Workstation: Dell Latitude E7440, i5, 1080p screen, Crucial 8GB, Crucial M500 480GB mSATA, Win7
NAS&Downloader: XPEnology PC, AMD E2-2000, 4GB, 2x Seagate 4TB ST4000DM000, 2x HGST NAS 4TB, DSM 5.0
HTPC1: TranquilPC ABEL H2, i3, 4GB DDR3L-12800, Crucial M4 128GB mSATA, Win7
HTPC2: Akasa Euler, DH61AG, Pentium G620, 4GB DDR3L-10666, Crucial M4 64GB mSATA, Win7


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Basic Quality Build Music Server Only
PostPosted: Tue Apr 16, 2013 6:16 am 
Offline

Joined: Mon May 16, 2011 11:23 am
Posts: 653
Location: Germany
Highly regarded (and highly priced, of course) is the Sonos Streaming System

http://www.sonos.com/system

And if you use an external HDD as "serverdrive" then you might run into problems if two or more are accessing music at he same time, because of low bandwith while using USB. ESata or USB 3 would be a necessity, then.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Basic Quality Build Music Server Only
PostPosted: Tue Apr 23, 2013 11:37 am 
Offline

Joined: Mon Feb 05, 2007 2:10 pm
Posts: 1829
Location: Northern New Jersey
If you're only streaming to one room at a time, and you're close enough, why not just bluetooth?

I've installed Sonos systems before and worked on them in other homes, and they're a PITA at first, but do work pretty well once they get set up correctly.

I believe you could use a small NAS to store your music (Buffalo makes one that uses RAID1 for backup) and use a Marantz or other stereo that can connect to the library? Your computer should be able to play off it as well to minimize the need for duplicates everywhere. I doubt there's a need for a dedicated computer just to act as a music server.

_________________
|Dual Intel Xeon E5-2620-Xigmatek SD1283 DK-II|Asus Z9PA-D8-HR-05 IFX|WD 250gb Velociraptor SATA3|16gb DDR3-1600 ECC RDIMM|WD Blue 640GB SATA2 x2|Logitech K750|Logitech Wireless Mouse|nVidia GTX660ti 2GB|Antec HCG-750|NZXT Source 210 Elite|M-Audio ProFire 2626|Art TubeOpto8 with Smooth Plate Tube Swap|Avid Artist Mix x2|
FartingBob wrote:
A 9500GT with 1GB of RAM is the most pointless thing since NASCAR.


Top
 Profile  
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 12 posts ] 

All times are UTC - 8 hours


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
Powered by phpBB © 2000, 2002, 2005, 2007 phpBB Group