Another USB vs. Coax or AES/EBU

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Larry Dickman

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Another USB vs. Coax or AES/EBU
« on: 23 Dec 2017, 08:33 am »
"On (James) Tanner's recommendation, I used a coaxial SPDIF connection between the BDP-Pi and the internal DAC on my Simaudio Moon Neo 340i integrated amplifier."--https://www.wifihifi.ca/LatestNewsHeadlines/Hands-onReview:BrystonBDP-πDigitalMusicPlayer.html

"Bryston sent along one of their AES/EBU cables so I took the hint and used that to connect the BDP-2 to the BDA-2."--
https://www.audiostream.com/content/bryston-bda-2-and-bdp-2#tog4xVUG3vFrwtoD.99"

To me, this means that Bryston prefers these over USB.

Am I wrong?

TJ-Sully

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Re: Another USB vs. Coax or AES/EBU
« Reply #1 on: 23 Dec 2017, 01:54 pm »
Larry

I'm not so sure it's a matter of right or wrong. I would say it depends on the circumstance.   

From my perspective,  I would always choose balanced connections, analogue or digital, when presented the opportunity. (vs USB, coax, or optical)

In the case of the Pi-digital player, there is no balanced connection option. Using a Coax digital connection would be the next obvious choice (vs. optical and HDMI). The USB option would also be a good choice depending on the DAC, as articulated in the Bryston Pi-digial player manual, here:

"Audio Connection
Prior to powering on your BDP-π, connect your BDP-π to your DAC using one of the four different methods described above. The most desirable connection depends on your DAC. Typically, S/PDIF will be better sounding than TOSLINK. USB offers very high sound quality (perhaps even superior to S/ PDIF) when coupled with asynchronous USB DACs such as Bryston's own BDA-2 and BDA-3. HDMI is limited to a maximum sample rate of 48kHz and bit depth of 16.
"

So, L Dickman, I would say it depends. But go with balanced connection every time, if you can.

TJ


zoom25

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Re: Another USB vs. Coax or AES/EBU
« Reply #2 on: 23 Dec 2017, 05:11 pm »
With BDP-1, AES was the preferred connection. On BDP-2, people still liked the AES more than USB, including James. It's only with the BDA-3 and BDP-3 combination that James has said that he prefers USB over AES. I'm not sure if that has changed.

bobf

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Re: Another USB vs. Coax or AES/EBU
« Reply #3 on: 23 Dec 2017, 06:32 pm »
The AES trumped USB going from a BDP3 to a Clones Asher DAC. The Asher has a femto clock and asynchronous USB.
The AES cable was by Digiflex and the USB was Nordost Heimdal 2.

schmidtmike76

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Re: Another USB vs. Coax or AES/EBU
« Reply #4 on: 25 Dec 2017, 11:00 pm »
I have the Pi and BDA-3 which would be the preferred coax or USB.  Anyone compare, thanks Mike
 

James Tanner

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Re: Another USB vs. Coax or AES/EBU
« Reply #5 on: 25 Dec 2017, 11:40 pm »
I have the Pi and BDA-3 which would be the preferred coax or USB.  Anyone compare, thanks Mike

Hi Mike

USB is my preference BUT - you have to make sure the DAC has an excellent USB section (BDA-3).

james

schmidtmike76

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Re: Another USB vs. Coax or AES/EBU
« Reply #6 on: 26 Dec 2017, 01:35 am »
Thanks James I do have the BDA3 and the pi would USB sound better than coax? 

TJ-Sully

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Re: Another USB vs. Coax or AES/EBU
« Reply #7 on: 26 Dec 2017, 01:40 am »
sounds like a cool experiment waiting in the wings....nice going on the BDA3. lucky!  :thumb:

bjski

Re: Another USB vs. Coax or AES/EBU
« Reply #8 on: 26 Dec 2017, 04:46 pm »
With my BDP-3 and BDA-3,Wireworld Platinum USB.With my BDP-2 and BDA-2 I use AES Wireworld Platinum.The sound of the usb sounds more refined, less harsh, slightly better definition along with a tad more bass. The ripped cd’s I tend to notice the biggest difference. Terrible recorded cd is now actually listenable. This can also be contributed to the latest versions of the BDP-3 & BDA-3.
Anyone who owns an older version of the BDP-2 should update to the latest sound card.

CanadianMaestro

Re: Another USB vs. Coax or AES/EBU
« Reply #9 on: 27 Dec 2017, 07:32 pm »
AES  :thumb:

schmidtmike76

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Re: Another USB vs. Coax or AES/EBU
« Reply #10 on: 28 Dec 2017, 01:34 am »
Going down the rabbit hole here, anyone compare USB cables and actually notice a difference in sound quality

zoom25

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Re: Another USB vs. Coax or AES/EBU
« Reply #11 on: 28 Dec 2017, 02:20 am »
Going down the rabbit hole here, anyone compare USB cables and actually notice a difference in sound quality

I think I did slightly when I compared my Belkin Gold and Audioquest Forest. For once, I could not tell which one was better. They just sounded very slightly different, particularly in the mids. Ultimately, my gut was telling me at the time that the Belkin Gold was more correct sounding, so I stick with that.

The Belkin Gold is double shielded.

Anonamemouse

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Re: Another USB vs. Coax or AES/EBU
« Reply #12 on: 28 Dec 2017, 11:38 am »
Going down the rabbit hole here, anyone compare USB cables and actually notice a difference in sound quality
There is no difference between a $ 1.50 usb cable and a $ 15,000.00 usb cable. It transports 0's and 1's, which are collected and puzzled together at the receiving end.

CanadianMaestro

Re: Another USB vs. Coax or AES/EBU
« Reply #13 on: 28 Dec 2017, 02:43 pm »
There is no difference between a $ 1.50 usb cable and a $ 15,000.00 usb cable. It transports 0's and 1's, which are collected and puzzled together at the receiving end.

This has been my experience, although I don't have a 15K usb cable LOL.
Any well-built usb cable will do the job.

schmidtmike76

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Re: Another USB vs. Coax or AES/EBU
« Reply #14 on: 29 Dec 2017, 12:45 am »
If your not willing to look into the rabbit hole I’d keep walking.  I AB’d a stock USB and a nordost blue heavan.  There is no doubt that the nordost sounded leagues better.  I then A/B Nordost coax same line and even though the USB cable is new it sounds fuller and smoother than the coax.  I’m willing to take my licks on this one but I know what I’m hearing.  Don’t even ask why a micro C cord sounded different (I didn’t buy it) but it did.

zoom25

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Re: Another USB vs. Coax or AES/EBU
« Reply #15 on: 29 Dec 2017, 01:52 am »
If your not willing to look into the rabbit hole I’d keep walking.  I AB’d a stock USB and a nordost blue heavan.  There is no doubt that the nordost sounded leagues better.  I then A/B Nordost coax same line and even though the USB cable is new it sounds fuller and smoother than the coax.  I’m willing to take my licks on this one but I know what I’m hearing.  Don’t even ask why a micro C cord sounded different (I didn’t buy it) but it did.

Keep length in mind as well, or at least constant.

schmidtmike76

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Re: Another USB vs. Coax or AES/EBU
« Reply #16 on: 29 Dec 2017, 03:14 am »
Keep length in mind as well, or at least constant.
0.5M longer on the coax

Larry Dickman

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Re: Another USB vs. Coax or AES/EBU
« Reply #17 on: 29 Dec 2017, 03:58 am »
I feel if I use a $500 WireWorld Platinum Starlight USB I'm getting the finest quality 0s and 1s available.

Anonamemouse

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Re: Another USB vs. Coax or AES/EBU
« Reply #18 on: 31 Dec 2017, 10:44 am »
If your not willing to look into the rabbit hole I’d keep walking.  I AB’d a stock USB and a nordost blue heavan.  There is no doubt that the nordost sounded leagues better.  I then A/B Nordost coax same line and even though the USB cable is new it sounds fuller and smoother than the coax.  I’m willing to take my licks on this one but I know what I’m hearing.  Don’t even ask why a micro C cord sounded different (I didn’t buy it) but it did.
I actually did look down the hole. I got a few friends together plus my 16 year old daughter who never uses in ear plugs to sit in and listen. Tested were a Nordost RedDawn (because that is used throughout my system), a standard issue $ 1.50 cable, a Furutech and an Inakustik.
Cables were switched without us listeners knowing which we listened to. The music listened to was always the same.
Final conclusion: no difference.

CanadianMaestro

Re: Another USB vs. Coax or AES/EBU
« Reply #19 on: 31 Dec 2017, 02:31 pm »
I actually did look down the hole. I got a few friends together plus my 16 year old daughter who never uses in ear plugs to sit in and listen. Tested were a Nordost RedDawn (because that is used throughout my system), a standard issue $ 1.50 cable, a Furutech and an Inakustik.
Cables were switched without us listeners knowing which we listened to. The music listened to was always the same.
Final conclusion: no difference.


 :thumb:

I would assume that if a hi- end audio system's SQ changes a lot because of one cable being changed, then the system's components are flawed.....?