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Index » Internet/Computer » Streaming/Media » FLAC stream Page: Previous  1, 2, 3, 4  Next
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ScottFromWyoming

ScottFromWyoming Avatar

Location: Powell
Gender: Male


Posted: Jan 11, 2018 - 3:45pm

 black321 wrote:
What type/format of source file does RP use?

 
Best available. When you get into the song submission process a bit, you'll see this:
 

FLAC file available: check if you can provide a FLAC or Apple Lossless file

black321

black321 Avatar

Location: A sunset in the desert
Gender: Male


Posted: Jan 11, 2018 - 12:18pm

What type/format of source file does RP use?
swamitommi

swamitommi Avatar

Location: Portland, Ore.
Gender: Male


Posted: Jan 11, 2018 - 11:23am

I'm home sick this morning, so have some time to write about my impressions.  I just had the chance to install and test the FLAC pluggin for Squeeze last night.  I run a Transporter down in the cave, where the audiophool rig resides.  In the past, I'd run RP's 192kbps OGG stream off the Transporter, feeling it gave me the best sound on that particular source.  Comparing the OGG stream to the FLAC one, I initially couldn't tell much if any difference.  Then a Paul Simon tune came on, with lots of ambient sound and deep bass.  OMG - what a difference!  The same tune on the OGG stream sounded so... thin in comparison.  Comes to show (as it has been again and again) that it all starts in the studio.  If a piece of music comes out of the studio poorly engineered and dynamically compressed, ripping to a lossy format might not be all that impactful.  However, if you have something that's been engineered pretty well in the studio, then there's more to lose to lossy compression.  This is my belief anyway, after many years of digital audio nerdistry.

One of the things we all love about RP is the massive range of music Bill and Rebecca play.  With that comes a range of recording quality.  I think with FLAC on a revealing system, our mileage will vary significantly.  I'm not sure I can be bothered to experiment to this degree - but I might wager the listener's experience would be more consistent on a revealing audio rig using a lower bitrate stream.  Why?  Lossy compression may level the playing field somewhat, harming good recordings more than bad ones.  Maybe.  Given the potential for really fat full sound from RP in the cave, I doubt I'll be going back though.  If only a quarter of the songs RP plays audibly benefit from lossless compression vs lossy, I'm in.  No way am I giving that up in exchange for what **might** be a more consistently thin listening experience.

Or not.  Listening on my phone here, I just compared the 320kbps stream to flac, listening to The Rest, by Webb Wilder, and I was surprised I could hear a difference (flac, then 320, clear cache (ensuring I'm not getting the cached flac stream), then flac, clear cache, then 320, clear cache).  I do run about as close to an audiophile phone setup as one might easily get (LG V20 with its "Hi-Fi Quad DAC" into Sennheiser HD595s (very good but not truly great cans - with the benefit of being easy to drive, so great for phones and portables)).  I was a little surprised this set up was revealing enough to show a difference between 320 and flac - but I'll take it!

Flac for the win!
swamitommi

swamitommi Avatar

Location: Portland, Ore.
Gender: Male


Posted: Jan 10, 2018 - 4:27pm

I'll put in a plug here for FLAC on the Roku app.  Love the Roku app, but it could sound much better.
BillG

BillG Avatar

Location: Left Coast
Gender: Male


Posted: Jan 8, 2018 - 7:44pm

 jbuhl wrote:

Looks like my Wadia upsamples everything coming in on S/PDIF to 32/196 via a Cirrus Logic CMOS.  So all my A/B efforts are useless anyway.  Just have to settle for realizing the chip is doing less work :) 

 
On the Mac app (& on our mobile apps), changing the bitrate does not necessarily immediately take effect. If you want to do a comparison, you can follow the bitrate change with 'sync to web stream'.  Otherwise, the change will take effect 1-3 songs in the future. 

Also, what you're hearing on the apps will not always match what's displayed on the website. If you've paused the audio for ny length of time, or skipped a song, it will *definitely* not match. You need to look at the app's now playing display. If for some reason having that match is important, use 'sync to web stream'.


haresfur

haresfur Avatar

Location: The Golden Triangle
Gender: Male


Posted: Jan 8, 2018 - 6:41pm

 swell_sailor wrote:

Even with the Wadia upsampling it should be possible to hear a difference, especially between the most compressed stream and the flac stream. I'm still baffled as to why I can't hear a difference. 



 


Too much of this?
swell_sailor

swell_sailor Avatar

Location: The Gorge
Gender: Male


Posted: Jan 8, 2018 - 4:48pm

 jbuhl wrote:

Looks like my Wadia upsamples everything coming in on S/PDIF to 32/196 via a Cirrus Logic CMOS.  So all my A/B efforts are useless anyway.  Just have to settle for realizing the chip is doing less work :) 

 

Even with the Wadia upsampling it should be possible to hear a difference, especially between the most compressed stream and the flac stream. I'm still baffled as to why I can't hear a difference. 


jbuhl

jbuhl Avatar

Location: Boulder,CO


Posted: Jan 8, 2018 - 11:35am

 swell_sailor wrote:

I have a Nova in my office and it upsamples, but I'm not sure about the Wadia. 

 
Looks like my Wadia upsamples everything coming in on S/PDIF to 32/196 via a Cirrus Logic CMOS.  So all my A/B efforts are useless anyway.  Just have to settle for realizing the chip is doing less work :) 
jbuhl

jbuhl Avatar

Location: Boulder,CO


Posted: Jan 8, 2018 - 7:55am

ahhh, first day my desktop app has been in sync with the webpage playlist.  {#Cheers}
jbuhl

jbuhl Avatar

Location: Boulder,CO


Posted: Jan 7, 2018 - 5:00pm

 BillG wrote:
 william.f.morris9914 wrote:
I see a previous question re ability to stream FLAC through SONOS, but no response.  Is this possible?

 
Not currently. We're working on that.



BillG

BillG Avatar

Location: Left Coast
Gender: Male


Posted: Jan 7, 2018 - 1:09pm

 william.f.morris9914 wrote:
I see a previous question re ability to stream FLAC through SONOS, but no response.  Is this possible?

 
Not currently. We're working on that.

At this point, FLAC only works on our iOS, Android, AppleTV, Fire tv, and Mac OS apps. It will also be included in our new web player,  due in Feb.



william.f.morris...

william.f.morris9914 Avatar

Location: Toronto


Posted: Jan 7, 2018 - 12:46pm

I see a previous question re ability to stream FLAC through SONOS, but no response.  Is this possible?
swell_sailor

swell_sailor Avatar

Location: The Gorge
Gender: Male


Posted: Jan 7, 2018 - 9:07am

 jbuhl wrote:

It appears the RP app buffers up to a couple songs ahead, hence the no interrupt when you change stream quality settings.  If you want to A/B those settings best reboot the app after change.  I am going to try that today as my hearing is getting  more unclogged after being sicko.

Also I am incurring a conversion from FLAC —>AAC by going through the apple TV.  I might try the USB connection today as well but have read where the Wadia USB implementation is not as good as the other digital connects.

 

I was using the RP app for the theoretical Flac playback, and iTunes for the AAC playback. The two streams were nearly synced and playing concurrently. The difference was obvious. 

I considered that the flac stream was buffered and let it play for several minutes after switching quality settings. I did not reboot the app however. I could try that as an experiment, but the veiled sound was observed after rebooting more than once with the uncompressed setting selected. 

It's likely that the app is performing the decompression of the flac file, then passing the native signal on to whatever is next in the chain. Avoiding the Apple TV potentially means one less conversion takes place. It's worth checking out. 

On many devices USB input is limited to a lower sample rate, but that's not typically so low as to reduce the quality of this flac stream, as I suspect it's 16/44.


jbuhl

jbuhl Avatar

Location: Boulder,CO


Posted: Jan 7, 2018 - 8:29am

 swell_sailor wrote:

If I remember correctly, both the Apple TV and the current Express operate at 48kHz, while the original Express operates at 44.1kHz, so this is what the DAC will see if the signal is passing though one of these devices regardless of what comes in from RP. I have a Nova in my office and it upsamples, but I'm not sure about the Wadia. 

My current DAC does not upsample. The DAC sees whatever is coming out of the RP app and plays it natively. 

After listening more and experimenting a bit, I was able to quickly A/B between the AAC128 feed using Airplay to an Express, and the Flac feed coming out of the RP app being fed to my DAC via USB. The AAC feed sounded a bit exaggerated  from the middle up. It seems a little more forward as compared to my best digital files. The Flac feed didn't seem exaggerated or forward at all. It sounded like I'd thrown a blanket over my speakers. 

Edit: I also sent the signal from the RP app out wirelessly through the Express and got the same veiled sound. 



 
It appears the RP app buffers up to a couple songs ahead, hence the no interrupt when you change stream quality settings.  If you want to A/B those settings best reboot the app after change.  I am going to try that today as my hearing is getting  more unclogged after being sicko.

Also I am incurring a conversion from FLAC —>AAC by going through the apple TV.  I might try the USB connection today as well but have read where the Wadia USB implementation is not as good as the other digital connects.


swell_sailor

swell_sailor Avatar

Location: The Gorge
Gender: Male


Posted: Jan 7, 2018 - 7:17am

 jbuhl wrote:


Yep noticed the same thing.  Even when I change to "low" my DAC still reads 48Khz but I suspect that is what the Appletv device is telling it regardless if what is happening.  But I can't really tell the difference from any of the settings.   Do you have an upsampling DAC?  I think my old Peachtree upsampled whether you liked it or not.  I have a Wadia 321 now and am not sure what it does.  Might have to research that.

 

If I remember correctly, both the Apple TV and the current Express operate at 48kHz, while the original Express operates at 44.1kHz, so this is what the DAC will see if the signal is passing though one of these devices regardless of what comes in from RP. I have a Nova in my office and it upsamples, but I'm not sure about the Wadia. 

My current DAC does not upsample. The DAC sees whatever is coming out of the RP app and plays it natively. 

After listening more and experimenting a bit, I was able to quickly A/B between the AAC128 feed using Airplay to an Express, and the Flac feed coming out of the RP app being fed to my DAC via USB. The AAC feed sounded a bit exaggerated  from the middle up. It seems a little more forward as compared to my best digital files. The Flac feed didn't seem exaggerated or forward at all. It sounded like I'd thrown a blanket over my speakers. 

Edit: I also sent the signal from the RP app out wirelessly through the Express and got the same veiled sound. 




jbuhl

jbuhl Avatar

Location: Boulder,CO


Posted: Jan 6, 2018 - 6:34pm

 swell_sailor wrote:

Now that I've had a chance to play with the app a little more, I can hear no discernible difference between the various quality settings. The music doesn't stop or reset in any way when I switch quality. It just keeps playing and sounding the same. 

This is on a mac recently updated to High Sierra. 



 

Yep noticed the same thing.  Even when I change to "low" my DAC still reads 48Khz but I suspect that is what the Appletv device is telling it regardless if what is happening.  But I can't really tell the difference from any of the settings.   Do you have an upsampling DAC?  I think my old Peachtree upsampled whether you liked it or not.  I have a Wadia 321 now and am not sure what it does.  Might have to research that.


swell_sailor

swell_sailor Avatar

Location: The Gorge
Gender: Male


Posted: Jan 6, 2018 - 2:08pm

 swell_sailor wrote:

I'm not sure where we might put feature requests for the desktop app, but I have one. 

I use an application called Decibel (on a mac) to play music files to my dac via usb. I can select this output in Decibel so I don't have to select it system wide. The new app is great, but to stream to my dac I have to select the output to the dac system wide which, messes with some other things I like to do. Having this option inside of the RP app, and having the app remember this selection, would be awesome. 



 

Now that I've had a chance to play with the app a little more, I can hear no discernible difference between the various quality settings. The music doesn't stop or reset in any way when I switch quality. It just keeps playing and sounding the same. 

This is on a mac recently updated to High Sierra. 


swell_sailor

swell_sailor Avatar

Location: The Gorge
Gender: Male


Posted: Jan 6, 2018 - 12:18pm

I'm not sure where we might put feature requests for the desktop app, but I have one. 

I use an application called Decibel (on a mac) to play music files to my dac via usb. I can select this output in Decibel so I don't have to select it system wide. The new app is great, but to stream to my dac I have to select the output to the dac system wide which, messes with some other things I like to do. Having this option inside of the RP app, and having the app remember this selection, would be awesome. 




rarenracy

rarenracy Avatar



Posted: Jan 4, 2018 - 3:41pm

 rarenracy wrote:
I'm really pleased to hear that RP is streaming CD quality FLAC files and will be developing this across different platforms. I'm looking forward to it being integrated into my Bluesound streamer. 

Is there a way to check what bit rate file my Android phone is receiving?  I'm on version 3.23.2 of the RP app and have it set to maximum bit rate for both WiFi and mobile data. It should be receiving the FLAC stream, yes?

Keep up the good work!
 
 

 
Ah, just discovered the five different bitrate settings and that "hi" is actually the middle setting and there are two higher settings. I keep forgetting we now live in 'post-truth' society!
rarenracy

rarenracy Avatar



Posted: Jan 3, 2018 - 12:29pm

I'm really pleased to hear that RP is streaming CD quality FLAC files and will be developing this across different platforms. I'm looking forward to it being integrated into my Bluesound streamer. 

Is there a way to check what bit rate file my Android phone is receiving?  I'm on version 3.23.2 of the RP app and have it set to maximum bit rate for both WiFi and mobile data. It should be receiving the FLAC stream, yes?

Keep up the good work!
 
 


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