high quality audio on linuxmint

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Howard_P
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high quality audio on linuxmint

Post by Howard_P » Wed Nov 07, 2018 11:29 pm

Hi- When I was using Win7 I set up my music using a JRiver as the music player. It sounded much better than the Windows Media Player. Now using Linuxmint 19 and 17.3 before that I've been unable to get the quality of sound I like. I play the music through a good quality amplifier/DAC unit and external speakers. Can someone recommend a good sounding music player and setup to get high quality audio on Mint? Thanks. -Howard

arvY99
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Re: high quality audio on linuxmint

Post by arvY99 » Thu Nov 08, 2018 3:25 am

Have you tried DeaDBeef?
Using it (headphone or USB DAC) and also often recommended...

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absque fenestris
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Re: high quality audio on linuxmint

Post by absque fenestris » Thu Nov 08, 2018 5:01 am

Good audio quality? What does this have to do with computers?
Healthy ears - and an idea of good music (Yes - that's where it gets difficult...)

O.K. - whatever:

First of all you need really good loudspeakers.
Secondly, a good amplifier.
Then you can connect whatever you want - it sounds really good or totally f***** up.
No matter if the source is digital or analog.
If in doubt, play a few notes on an instrument yourself and listen to them - or go to a concert - preferably with eerily old-fashioned sound generators such as pipes, trumpets, horns, strings, drums and a conductor.

About digital gimmicks: My last year's Arena experience (Rolling Stones) was rather sobering - a lot, a lot of money invested in very good equipment... Well Yes - it was loud...

There are street musicians who can make a really good sound without any fuss...
Linux Mint 18.3 Sylvia (Mate) 32-bit - Acer D250 Netbook (Intel Atom N270, 2 GB RAM, 120 GB SSD)

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Faust
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Re: high quality audio on linuxmint

Post by Faust » Thu Nov 08, 2018 5:13 am

Howard_P wrote:
Wed Nov 07, 2018 11:29 pm
Hi- When I was using Win7 I set up my music using a JRiver as the music player. It sounded much better than the Windows Media Player. Now using Linuxmint 19 and 17.3 before that I've been unable to get the quality of sound I like. I play the music through a good quality amplifier/DAC unit and external speakers. Can someone recommend a good sounding music player and setup to get high quality audio on Mint? Thanks. -Howard
Other forum members have been on this quest before .
Here is a link that may be helpful .

viewtopic.php?f=48&t=253225
" And so it goes " - Kurt Vonnegut
The modern reality and the satirical parody are rapidly converging .

Howard_P
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Re: high quality audio on linuxmint

Post by Howard_P » Thu Nov 08, 2018 11:31 am

Thank you.
Howard

Hoser Rob
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Re: high quality audio on linuxmint

Post by Hoser Rob » Thu Nov 08, 2018 11:34 am

absque fenestris wrote:
Thu Nov 08, 2018 5:01 am
Good audio quality? What does this have to do with computers?
If you're not getting a clean signal from the source, everything. Fortunately you don't need anything like wasapi or asio WIndows drivers in Linux. The main thing is avoiding resampling, and pulseaudio doesn't resample if you aren't doing software mixing. You can check this quite easily in Linux, play 2 files with different sample rates and run this in terminal while it's playing:

Code: Select all

cat /proc/asound/card?/stream0 | grep Momentary
If you're using an external DAC ... I use a USB one ... it's as simple as using a media player that has an output module option for just sending the bit stream directly to the device, usually listed as "USB Audio Codec" or similar. Easy. ANy player without this is IMO useless.

There shouldn't be any difference between players as long as they aren't resampling, but you have to remember that it's not possible to meaningfully compare things by ear unless you match levels, and still not easy. And most "golden eared" audiophiles are complete posers. Much like wine 'experts' who, using proper double blind trials, can\t even tell white from red.
About digital gimmicks: My last year's Arena experience (Rolling Stones) was rather sobering - a lot, a lot of money invested in very good equipment... Well Yes - it was loud...
Speaking of which, what the hell does a Rolling Stones concert have to do with digital gimmicks??? Ridiculous.

The truth is that at least 90% of your sound quality comes from 3 things. The source (ie. the recording quality and getting a clean signal), the speakers, and the room. The speakers and how they interact with the room can almost be considered one thing. ANY live sound tech knows this.

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phd21
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Re: high quality audio on linuxmint

Post by phd21 » Thu Nov 08, 2018 11:55 am

Hi Howard_P,

Good link from "Faust" and "111MilesToGo".

There are many very good to excellent music applications to install and try. I do not know why, but some music applications do sound better than others on the same audio (sound) hardware. Most music applications also have various settings and configuration options as well. My favorites are Amarok, Audacious (from their PPA), Sayonara, Clementine, Deadbeef, guayadeque, Qmmp, Yarock, etc... and it is perfectly alright to have more than one music application installed. I have noticed that some music apps have a problem when the "normalize" audio option is enabled (on).

Of course, your audio equipment and sound card(s) (sound devices DAC) will have an impact on the audio output.

Another post with good information:
Any music producers out there using Linux DAW's????
viewtopic.php?f=48&t=277768&hilit=jack

This post has various information on music applications
Rhythmbox cover art? Solved
viewtopic.php?f=90&t=275378&hilit=lollypop


Hope this helps ...
Last edited by phd21 on Sun Nov 11, 2018 3:03 pm, edited 2 times in total.
Phd21: Mint KDE 17.3 & 18.3, 64-bit Awesome OS, Ancient Dell OptiPlex 780 Core2Duo E8400 3GHz,4gb Ram,256gb SDD, Video: Intel 4 Graphics, DVD Lightscribe. Why I use KDE?:https://opensource.com/life/15/4/9-reasons-to-use-kde

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Faust
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Re: high quality audio on linuxmint

Post by Faust » Sun Nov 11, 2018 7:17 am

Hoser Rob wrote:
Thu Nov 08, 2018 11:34 am
absque fenestris wrote:
Thu Nov 08, 2018 5:01 am
Good audio quality? What does this have to do with computers?
If you're not getting a clean signal from the source, everything.
....
....
The truth is that at least 90% of your sound quality comes from 3 things. The source (ie. the recording quality and getting a clean signal), the speakers, and the room. The speakers and how they interact with the room can almost be considered one thing. ANY live sound tech knows this.
Browsing this thread has got me interested in high-quality computer audio again .
I've just re-read this very detailed article , and I've downloaded RuneAudio and Audiophile Linux to try later .
http://lacocina.nl/bitperfect-audio
[ It was posted by "111MilesToGo " last year in his excellent thread , mentioned above ^^ ]

The golden rule for me has always been to strip away as much "clutter" as possible in the audio pathway ,
ie. from the source to the ears , and that goes back to the days when there were no digital sources available .
[That must be the ideal route to enjoying the best possible quality in music playback
.... as others have said in this thread ] .

I can see a case for running a dedicated "audiophile" distro if spare hardware is available .
It shouldn't need to be particularly high-spec equipment , and RuneAudio looks like it would be happy
running on a Raspberry Pi , so there's minimal cash outlay required for that option .

I doubt the quality of the audio jack on the Pi board ( and on most other single board systems that have one )
so maybe there is a better way to take the audio feed out to the home music equipment ?

Has anybody tried running these systems ?
http://www.runeaudio.com/about/
https://www.ap-linux.com/about/

Interesting to note that the latter is now built on Arch , but the website says that previous builds were Mint based .

Side question :
Has anyone noticed much difference between using USB 2.0 and USB 3.0 devices when it comes to audio
applications in general ?
There is the obvious speed advantage , but does that really matter in our " audiophile " case ?

I'm always keen to hear of experiments and experiences from other members on these subjects .
" And so it goes " - Kurt Vonnegut
The modern reality and the satirical parody are rapidly converging .

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Flemur
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Re: high quality audio on linuxmint

Post by Flemur » Sun Nov 11, 2018 2:16 pm

Hoser Rob wrote:
Thu Nov 08, 2018 11:34 am
The main thing is avoiding resampling,
People couldn't recognize an extraneous A/D/A conversion:
https://people.xiph.org/~xiphmont/demo/neil-young.html
(a little over half-way down)
The speakers and how they interact with the room can almost be considered one thing. ANY live sound tech knows this.
Yup. Any decent WalMart-quality-or-better equipment (amps, DACs, computers, cables, etc), other than speakers, performs above what humans can hear.
Please edit your original post title to include [SOLVED] if/when it is solved!
Your data and OS are backed up....right?
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MrEen
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Re: high quality audio on linuxmint

Post by MrEen » Sun Nov 11, 2018 2:32 pm

Faust wrote:
Sun Nov 11, 2018 7:17 am

Has anybody tried running these systems ?
http://www.runeaudio.com/about/
https://www.ap-linux.com/about/
Both being Arch based is going to keep me from trying them for the next few decades. I mean, look at the install instructions for APLinux! Not only do I not fully understand too many commands just to install the OS, the i386 and dos stuff makes it appear it won't take advantage of newer hardware (not that I'm running any.)

And don't forget, it's going to break with one of the next couple of updates! :wink:

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trytip
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Re: high quality audio on linuxmint

Post by trytip » Sun Nov 11, 2018 3:24 pm

just as most video integrated graphics are much lower quality than independent hardware video cards, i would assume you'd first need a good audio hardware card. any tweaks you make on integrated audio are just software related and not true sound

i haven't had a dedicated sound card since the days of creative sound blaster 16/32 so i have no idea how linux sounds with new audio hardware
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rene
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Re: high quality audio on linuxmint

Post by rene » Sun Nov 11, 2018 5:09 pm

trytip wrote:
Sun Nov 11, 2018 3:24 pm
i would assume you'd first need a good audio hardware card.
No. You need a good external DAC to which you ship samples digitally from un- or losslessly compressed versions of the to you available source.

Digital audio on the computer in the consumer, and certainly non-surround, "music" context is a solved problem; lossy compression has been obsoleted by video-driven storage increase and the rise of external DACs transports any (real) issue beyond the computer itself; only quality of the external DAC itself is then in any way significant, given the normal home setup with single meter cable lengths; note that this includes clock stability, with a good DAC doing buffering/reclocking, as well as the connection itself, with for example a good DAC's coax input not susceptible to ground loops.

Surround can for those who care still be a little more problematic even if only due to bandwidth but anyone who'd consider "music from the computer" in 2018 still an interesting problem hasn't gotten around to upgrading him- or herself for the last decade or so...

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Faust
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Re: high quality audio on linuxmint

Post by Faust » Wed Nov 14, 2018 10:59 am

MrEen wrote:
Sun Nov 11, 2018 2:32 pm
Faust wrote:
Sun Nov 11, 2018 7:17 am

Has anybody tried running these systems ?
http://www.runeaudio.com/about/
https://www.ap-linux.com/about/
Both being Arch based is going to keep me from trying them for the next few decades. I mean, look at the install instructions for APLinux! Not only do I not fully understand too many commands just to install the OS, the i386 and dos stuff makes it appear it won't take advantage of newer hardware (not that I'm running any.)

And don't forget, it's going to break with one of the next couple of updates! :wink:
Agreed .... your reasoning is sound !
I'm wary of starting on these types of project without asking around first .... :)
I don't want to be the first one to run into a shed-load of problems , just because of enthusiasm :lol:
and I read all of those install instructions ....

But as I mentioned , previous versions of ap-linux were Mint based , and I think that's a much more interesting prospect .
" And so it goes " - Kurt Vonnegut
The modern reality and the satirical parody are rapidly converging .

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