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Computer audio and dedicated CD Player - Confused!

Wharfedale Speakers


Well-Known Member
Jan 12, 2014
I am new here and was reading all the posts regarding DAC / USB and using a PC as a transport for Flac. A few days back I got a brand new NAD 356 BEE with inbuilt DAC modue.

As I listen to heavy metal and rock mostly so I took my amp and checked out Klipsch. The sound was horrible and I know there is nothing wrong with the speakers, as it played like a dream on the Demo CD player.
That rock concert sound from the demo CD player was in a treated room maybe ?

I have not tried out VLC for bitstreaming from a flac source. In my understanding if you are able to control volume you are not delivering an untouched bitstream to the DAC.

I have gone from burn in sceptic to believer thrice. So have you had ten - twenty hours on the new rig ?

I have also figured out slowly that swiping card, unpacking speakers and hitting play does not automagically result in nice sound. There is that dastardly thing which comes in the way - your room. If you have not attacked that beast you will not hear what you desire. Then there is the power source you are feeding your PC/ amp and dac with.

FLAC vs .wav is probably not your big worry as long as you have ripped your CDs correctly with EAC.

Take things step by step and slowly. It is a long journey (and in case kind of convoluted too but I think someday ....)

ciao and happy listening.


Well-Known Member
Aug 17, 2011
from Kolkata, now in Melbourne.
There will be better DACs out there. Not denying that. But what i am concerned here is that the same DAC when used with the internal CD transport is giving a better SQ than when used with USB input.

You are not getting the point here. Inside the CDP the transport section and the DAC section is most probably connected using 12S connection, which is by far the best connection. And on the other hand, USB (and more so USB 1.1) is the worst connection. If not implemented well, USB sounds very bad.

So, for a fair comparison you have to feed the signal to the DAC through same interface. No other way to determine.

XMOS and M2Tech Hiface are not DACs but the former is USB audio processor chip and the later is an USB to S/PDIF converter, where the USB input implementation is better than most out there at that price.
Last edited:


Active Member
Mar 31, 2010
Nadia, W.B.,India
Fine. i can give JRiver a try. But i have one question ...

Foobar with WASAPI is giving bit-perfect data, so will JRiver, right? What difference can JRiver bring in additionally that can make a difference in sound quality?
Hai@Miany I always believe that a dedicated DAC is better than an inbuilt DAC of any digital source. And for PC audio playback through USB you have to use a separate USB interface for isolate PC power in USB. You can use it Schiit Audio, Headphone amps and DACs made in USA.

Any way with your current setup you can change the following and see if there is any difference of sound for you.

1) Use only USB 2.0 cable. (Not USB 3.0),

2) In Foober2000 just add some more DSP.
a) ASIO transport (foo_out_asio) if your DAC support ASIO playback. ASIO will
completely bypass Windows Audio and it has minimum latency period (1-5 ms).
It is the best way to transport PC audio.
But if your DAC dose not support ASIO then you can you can use
b) Kernel Streaming Output. (foo_out_ks).

3) Use SoX resampler mod2 (foo_dsp_resampler_mod2) as your default audio resamplar in Foober.

I am personally set my PC audio in this way and it give me a huge improvement in sound. And I am using 'Schiit Modi2' as my dedicated DAC.


New Member
Mar 30, 2015
Not all DAC are built alike.
Not all USB cables are built alike :)
Have you checked if the USB port you are using is including data and power on same line?