51 (edited by Robertm394 2019-01-31 00:22:51)

Re: iFi Audio Accessory iPower 12V/1.8A

I've read that the way the signal is transmitted in an XLR cable helps with noise rejection resulting in a better, less noisy signal. If this is true, it still proves the basic point that cable design can influence sound quality.


Look, there is nothing different here from what I said above.

Balanced audio cables have three wires that serve as conductors--negative, positive and ground. The positive and negative wires both carry the audio signal but with opposite polarities. This means that any noise from outside interference sources will be cancelled out. Balanced cables are suitable for audio applications that require long lengths (more than 25 to 30 feet).

https://www.techwalla.com/articles/what-is-an-xlr-cable

In other words, cable design affects sound quality.

52 (edited by ramses 2019-01-31 08:27:41)

Re: iFi Audio Accessory iPower 12V/1.8A

No, it's not the "cable design" alone, that you have one wire more.

What you are still missing is that balanced cables need to have a special circuit on both sides which makes use of the additional wire which carries the same signal in reversed polarity for noise cancellation purposes:
http://www.aviom.com/blog/balanced-vs-unbalanced/

This makes balanced cables superior over non-balanced cables in the 1st place not the "cable design".
Additionally balanced connections are using higher signal levels which are typically found in studios which makes it also possible to use much longer cables lengths. The article mentions up to 30m, which is not possible with unbalanced cables without loss.

So it's not the cable quality which makes balanced connections superior, it's the logic behind how it works with the extra circuits on both sides, sending the same signal in reversed polarity over the additional wire, etc ..  which at the end eliminates any form of deltas (noise) to the original signal.

BR Ramses
UFX+, 12Mic, XTC, ADI-2 Pro FS R BE, RayDAT, X10SRi-F, E5-1650v4, Win10Pro22H2, Cub12Pro

Re: iFi Audio Accessory iPower 12V/1.8A

And you have all the benefits of the balanced system even if you use a cheap TRS cable...

ADI-2 DAC (with stock PSU) - Neumann KH 310 A monitors - Cheap USB and XLR cables

Re: iFi Audio Accessory iPower 12V/1.8A

Robertm394 wrote:

Even if so, which may be true, I've read that the way the signal is transmitted in an XLR cable helps with noise rejection resulting in a better, less noisy signal. If this is true, it still proves the basic point that cable design can influence sound quality.

No, it does not. Balanced/unbalanced has nothing to do with cable quality whatsoever, and would also apply to coathangers. Please inform yourself (Wikipedia).

Robertm394 wrote:

You need to stop misinterpreting my posts. Did I say my perception is "epistemologically superior" to the scientific method? No.
I simply said, it matters TO ME if I hear a meaningful difference between cables.

It is sad that you won't even for a moment acknowledge the fact that you may not be hearing, but (to put it  blunty) simply imagining these differences. If that is good enough for you, great, that's how snake oil sells... :-)

I also stated I'm not trying to prove it to you or anyone else here. At the same time, I haven't heard anything here that gives me a definitive reason to believe that cables can't influence sound quality. In fact, I'm now reading some tacit acknowledgement that in terms of analog cables, it MAY be possible.
.

That is because an analog cable actually transmits audio. An SPDIF cable and, even more so, a USB cable does not. As simple as that. This is not an audio transmission, there is no way categorically that the twice embedded audio content could be in any way affected by the cable, at least not gradually. The transmission will be either correct or corrupt, no shades of grey here.

Unless you acknowledge these two main issues, the discussion is really rather pointless...

Regards
Daniel Fuchs
RME

Regards
Daniel Fuchs
RME

55 (edited by ramses 2019-01-31 19:30:18)

Re: iFi Audio Accessory iPower 12V/1.8A

N00b wrote:

And you have all the benefits of the balanced system even if you use a cheap TRS cable...

Yes. I wouldn't use cheapest cables to still be able to check or fix contacts  shall there be an issue or to have good shielding or to be able to reuse the plugs for another cabe.

TRS = tip ring sleeve = 3 contacts  for balanced cables / connections
TS = tip sleeve = 2 contacts for unbalanced cables / connections (ie instrument inputs)

There are also combinations possible of TRS plug on one side and XLR plug on the other end for balanced connection's.

RME has usually so called servosymmetric ports which detect automatically whether this is a balanced connection or not. I assume based on whether TRS or TS plug is plugged in.

Neutrik XLR have simply the advantage that they are very robust and usually can be locked at devices if it's prepared at the device. So i.e. ideal for stage or to be safe in the studio that no cable slips out. In some situations it's wanted that cables slip out .. on a guitar .. not to destroy something esp. on semi acoustics.

BR Ramses
UFX+, 12Mic, XTC, ADI-2 Pro FS R BE, RayDAT, X10SRi-F, E5-1650v4, Win10Pro22H2, Cub12Pro

56 (edited by joachim.herbert 2019-02-01 16:45:04)

Re: iFi Audio Accessory iPower 12V/1.8A

@Robertm394 This is like car vs. motorcycle, i.e. two wheels vs. four wheels. There is a fundamental difference: A car will not topple while standing still, while a bike will. This behaviour does not depend on the implementation. Its the same for an Audi as it is for a Dacia on the car side and the same for a Ducati or a Honda on the bike side.

57 (edited by Robertm394 2019-02-02 03:42:04)

Re: iFi Audio Accessory iPower 12V/1.8A

RME Support wrote:
Robertm394 wrote:

Even if so, which may be true, I've read that the way the signal is transmitted in an XLR cable helps with noise rejection resulting in a better, less noisy signal. If this is true, it still proves the basic point that cable design can influence sound quality.

No, it does not. Balanced/unbalanced has nothing to do with cable quality whatsoever, and would also apply to coathangers. Please inform yourself (Wikipedia).

Robertm394 wrote:

You need to stop misinterpreting my posts. Did I say my perception is "epistemologically superior" to the scientific method? No.
I simply said, it matters TO ME if I hear a meaningful difference between cables.

It is sad that you won't even for a moment acknowledge the fact that you may not be heraring, but (to put it  blunty) simply imagining these differences. If that is good enough for you, great, that's how snake oil sells... :-)


Regards
Daniel Fuchs
RME

We're just talking past each other on this so I'm going to let it go.

As you can see, I did acknowledge this already in the same post you quoted:

That's not to say I'm 100% sure it's not psychoacoustic effects based on expectation. It certainly could be.

58 (edited by yuvisarora 2019-12-23 08:18:03)

Re: iFi Audio Accessory iPower 12V/1.8A

Yes, battery connects make a very audible difference in sound. Anyone claiming otherwise is a lazy couch potato internet keyboard warrior, the kind of person that will argue to the death about what something can and can't do, and never actually get off their ass and find out for themselves.
I have the RME ADI-2 DAC connected to a deep cycle battery with 20 gauge solid copper cables, all DIY.
And the difference in sound is unmistakable, even a retarded gerbil with one missing ear can hear it.

Re: iFi Audio Accessory iPower 12V/1.8A

https://i.ibb.co/nf4yw8h/IMG-20191223-070230-460.jpg


And BTW, this phone improvement makes a very audible difference in sound:
http://www.machinadynamica.com/machina60.htm

Anyone claiming otherwise is a lazy couch potato internet keyboard warrior, the kind of person that will argue to the death about what something can and can't do, and never actually get off their ass and find out for themselves.
I've called two times, and the difference in sound is unmistakable, even a retarded gerbil with one missing ear can hear it.

ADI-2 DAC (with stock PSU) - Neumann KH 310 A monitors - Cheap USB and XLR cables

Re: iFi Audio Accessory iPower 12V/1.8A

smile smile smile smile  +10!!!

Vintage 2018 ADI-2 DAC. "Classic AKM4490 Edition"
Cables:  Red, and White Ones.
Speakers:  Yes

Re: iFi Audio Accessory iPower 12V/1.8A

RME Support wrote:

That is because an analog cable actually transmits audio. An SPDIF cable and, even more so, a USB cable does not. As simple as that. This is not an audio transmission, there is no way categorically that the twice embedded audio content could be in any way affected by the cable, at least not gradually. The transmission will be either correct or corrupt, no shades of grey here.

Unless you acknowledge these two main issues, the discussion is really rather pointless...

Regards
Daniel Fuchs
RME


Hi, this coming from on official support, I cannot let this stand as is. I was looking into linear power supplys if they can improve sound recording, because I still hear a significant difference between vinyl audio and the recorded DSD256. I am questioning if that could be because the high frequency noise of a switching power supply to interfere with the high DSD clocking, or maybe it could be due to a limitation of DSD256. Also my RME ADI-2 Pro FS currently stands on top of my Preamp, certainly also a possibility of introducing noise.

But again to this quote, this is just not true. I purchased an Intona USB decoupler to solve this issue and it worked out a 100%. It was even recommended by MC_RME. So what is missing here is that the USB channel is leaking noise into the analogue path. This isn't RME specific, my other devices have this issue too.

62 (edited by KaiS 2022-09-13 19:42:40)

Re: iFi Audio Accessory iPower 12V/1.8A

BoooM wrote:

[... because I still hear a significant difference between vinyl audio and the recorded DSD256. I am questioning if that could be because the high frequency noise of a switching power supply to interfere with the high DSD clocking, or maybe it could be due to a limitation of DSD256.

Try recording simple PCM 24 bit 96 kHz and you won‘t hear any difference to the source.

DSD is a pain in the ...
What’s the point in recording noise frequencies way above audible, that later can cause trouble because they intermodulate with the audio band?


It‘s all about proper ground connections:

Of course your vinyl path needs to be free of ground related hum and noise for a good transfer.

Usually the turntable’s extra ground wire needs to be connected to the RIAA preamp‘s ground screw, the preamp needs to be connected to mains ground, e.g. via it‘s power cord.
The cable to ADI-2 Pro should be balanced if your preamp offers such connection, or as short as possible if you are using RCA.

An USB ground lifter may help or not, depending on the computer’s ground scheme - if the rest is correct it doesn‘t make a difference.
Same applies to the difference between SMPS or LPS - only if the grounding is wrong there‘s one, not always in favor for the Linear Power Supply.


In my studio I have loads of devices with all types of PSU‘s, spaced much more apart than typical Hifi (which makes signals more prone to interference), and there’s no problems with noise or hum pollution.

Re: iFi Audio Accessory iPower 12V/1.8A

Well, I actually bought the ADI-2 Pro because it has 4xDSD. No need to record in 96 kHz, it's not even close to analog. I know it's a pain to work with DSD, but I want to use the best digital resolution.

I have connected the turntable with proper cabling. Last time I compared DSD to analog, the main difference was that the DSD signal was missing space between sounds, it kinda sounds compressed.

The galvanic isolation was needed because of my PC, it has high end CPU and GPU, so very audible annoying noise, both in playback and recording.

Re: iFi Audio Accessory iPower 12V/1.8A

yuvisarora wrote:

Yes, battery connects make a very audible difference in sound. Anyone claiming otherwise is a lazy couch potato internet keyboard warrior, the kind of person that will argue to the death about what something can and can't do, and never actually get off their ass and find out for themselves.
I have the RME ADI-2 DAC connected to a deep cycle battery with 20 gauge solid copper cables, all DIY.
And the difference in sound is unmistakable, even a retarded gerbil with one missing ear can hear it.

Show your objective measurements/data  supporting your subjective claims/opinions

65 (edited by KaiS 2022-09-14 07:49:31)

Re: iFi Audio Accessory iPower 12V/1.8A

yuhasz01 wrote:
yuvisarora wrote:

Yes, battery connects make a very audible difference in sound. Anyone claiming otherwise is a lazy couch potato internet keyboard warrior, the kind of person that will argue to the death about what something can and can't do, and never actually get off their ass and find out for themselves.
I have the RME ADI-2 DAC connected to a deep cycle battery with 20 gauge solid copper cables, all DIY.
And the difference in sound is unmistakable, even a retarded gerbil with one missing ear can hear it.

Show your objective measurements/data  supporting your subjective claims/opinions

This is a very old thread / posting, don’t expect an answer from the poster.


Funny enough, I lately was forced to use a Laboratory Linear Power Supply (connected with 14 gauge laboratory leads) for some days, because I forgot my RME SMPS at a friend’s place after an audition.

Alternatively I tried a stinky cheap, underpowered SMPS made to drive LEDs only (polarity reversed to fit ADI-2), with high ripple and lots of stray current, that I finally abandoned because getting too hot.

Probably I’m a retard gerbil with only one half ear: It didn’t make any difference one way or the other, or with the RME PSU.


PS: my clients in the studio often comment I do hear things they don’t.
We seem to be a community of retard gerbils smile

https://www.rennmaus.de/fileadmin/media/gallery/Artikel_Gruppengr%C3%B6%C3%9Fe/Pyramide.jpg

66 (edited by Happy_amateur 2022-09-14 10:28:41)

Re: iFi Audio Accessory iPower 12V/1.8A

I have read this thread two times now, very amusing! big_smile You guys should meet in real life to fight this out.

- Angry mob of black eyed chanting audiophiles meet up with whipping shiny USB cables. Some even cleaned attic for ø30mm phat Monster speaker cables. In a rush they leap forward to defend their way of life. Its going to be a bloodbath!

- Faithful RME forum lieutenants KaiS, Ramses and mr. Fuchs courageously soften them up with D-Sub to 16 channel XLR´s. Even beating some of them to a pulp. The angry mob outnumbering RME faithful are still pressing forward.

- Suddenly MC shows up. In a series of "bullet time" fast ninja moves he saves the day with an honest to price 5m spdif optical cable. As fast as he showed up, he is gone!

- Audiophiles crawl back to their mancaves to regroup for another attack on reality and cheap ugly cabling.

To continue. 50 seasons times 52 episodes. big_smile

ADI-2 DAC, ADI-2 PRO, DigifaceUSB, UCXII, ARC, HEGEL.h80, KEF.ls50, HD650, ie400pro _,.\''/.,_

Re: iFi Audio Accessory iPower 12V/1.8A

Happy_amateur wrote:

I have read this thread two times now, very amusing! big_smile You guys should meet in real life to fight this out.

- Angry mob of black eyed chanting audiophiles meet up with whipping shiny USB cables. Some even cleaned attic for ø30mm phat Monster speaker cables. In a rush they leap forward to defend their way of life. Its going to be a bloodbath!

- Faithful RME forum lieutenants KaiS, Ramses and mr. Fuchs courageously soften them up with D-Sub to 16 channel XLR´s. Even beating some of them to a pulp. The angry mob outnumbering RME faithful are still pressing forward.

- Suddenly MC shows up. In a series of "bullet time" fast ninja moves he saves the day with an honest to price 5m spdif optical cable. As fast as he showed up, he is gone!

- Audiophiles crawl back to their mancaves to regroup for another attack on reality and cheap ugly cabling.

To continue. 50 seasons times 52 episodes. big_smile

Thank you for the humor here, appreciated. An ever recurring battle…..

Re: iFi Audio Accessory iPower 12V/1.8A

Happy_amateur wrote:

I have read this thread two times now, very amusing! big_smile You guys should meet in real life to fight this out.

- Angry mob of black eyed chanting audiophiles meet up with whipping shiny USB cables. Some even cleaned attic for ø30mm phat Monster speaker cables. In a rush they leap forward to defend their way of life. Its going to be a bloodbath!

- Faithful RME forum lieutenants KaiS, Ramses and mr. Fuchs courageously soften them up with D-Sub to 16 channel XLR´s. Even beating some of them to a pulp. The angry mob outnumbering RME faithful are still pressing forward.

- Suddenly MC shows up. In a series of "bullet time" fast ninja moves he saves the day with an honest to price 5m spdif optical cable. As fast as he showed up, he is gone!

- Audiophiles crawl back to their mancaves to regroup for another attack on reality and cheap ugly cabling.

To continue. 50 seasons times 52 episodes. big_smile

Tbh. I find this quiet sad, that you didn't even realize that an USB connection has an influence on the analogue path. And you are not an audiophile? Get yourself a cheap $100 DAC, you don't need an excellent RME.

69 (edited by KaiS 2022-09-16 03:06:46)

Re: iFi Audio Accessory iPower 12V/1.8A

BoooM wrote:

Tbh. I find this quiet sad, that you didn't even realize that an USB connection has an influence on the analogue path. And you are not an audiophile? Get yourself a cheap $100 DAC, you don't need an excellent RME.

That’s not in question, the USB connection links the ground of the DAC with the source device, for the good or bad.


If this has any effect depends on the complete chain.

ADI-2 is not grounded, so if you just plug headphones nothing bad happens, ADI-2 itself is completely immune against noise from USB ground.


But - if your source is grounded, AND you connect a grounded further device, e.g. a power amp, through an unbalanced link (RCA) to ADI-2, the double ground causes hum and noise from the resulting ground loop.

The same power amp connected balanced (XLR) removes this problem again.


if your USB source is NOT grounded, like a smartphone, nothing bad happens at all.
This is the configuration I use here:
Smartphone -> USB-> ADI-2 Pro-> various headphone and speaker amps.


So you see, there no easy answer, the result largely depends on ALL circumstances.


BTW: using Mr. Chin-Cheapo’s $100 DAC doesn’t change the basic problem, so your proposal doesn’t help.

What can help if there’s no other option is using an USB isolater as a last resort.
But careful, used wrong (pulling or plugging cables while mains are connected) these are notorious for killing the USB ports.
Read the reviews of people having this happen.

In the studio we simply use all balanced interconnects and don’t need to care about such stuff.

Re: iFi Audio Accessory iPower 12V/1.8A

Thank you for your elaborate answer.

I'm in the process of building a studio setup, so I now have connected everything via XLR, but the phono-preamp only has RCA. If I plug it via RCA-to-XLR (simple) cable into an analogue EQ, which only has XLR ports, does this help with the grounding? Both the phono-preamp and the analogue EQ are grounded. I mean, I should have killed the grounding issue with the PC via USB isolator, but I want to understand. Last time I tested, turning the analogue EQ on resulted in amplifying the grounding noise - it has a true bypass.

The other noteworthy question is, why does the USB transport-frequency - 8 kHz - have the highest peak in the noise measurements? Because it's the most regular pattern happening in the PC, or because it also is electrically nearby to the next ground?

I'll check a few things and report back if I have more questions.

71 (edited by KaiS 2022-09-16 16:44:34)

Re: iFi Audio Accessory iPower 12V/1.8A

There’s a connection scheme for unbalanced output to balanced input that can, but mustn’t necessarily help: impedance balanced.

The XLR (-) leg Pin3 is connected to shield/housing inside the RCA plug through a resistor of equal size as the output impedance of the sender.
https://www.soundonsound.com/sound-advi … -balancing
https://dt7v1i9vyp3mf.cloudfront.net/styles/news_large/s3/imagelibrary/Q/QA-04d-HSrULEtq6sE.0_gvvDaaY5B0Vb.uexZ3.jpg

If this helps or not, largely depends on the preamp’s internal wiring.


To analyze your problem:

In your case I’d start with the turntable / preamp / ADI-2 Pro alone.
Connect ADI-2 Pro + headphones to the pre, with only ADI-2’s factory PSU, but all other cables removed.

Is turntable+preamp (+ADI-2) hum and noise-“free”?
Quite often this not the case.

If yes, connect USB only, to check the result.
If this causes hum (still listen from ADI-2’s headphones out), you can try the impedance balanced connection.

If you tell me the RIAA preamp model, I can try to find out the correct resistor value.


My personal way in such cases alway was:
Mod the device.
In this case: fit XLR sockets to the back of the preamp and connected the impedance balancing to the preamp’s circuit board directly, where it’s much more effective.


Alternatively go for the USB isolator.
This only works if no other ground connections comes into play, like the analog EQ’s ground, or monitors connected to ADI-2 Pro, or ADI-2’s digital AES or Coax is used to link another grounded device.
Maybe you can abandon the analog EQ, use ADI-2’s EQ instead.


An important point is levels:
If you can bring the RIAA pre’s output level up and use a higher Reference Level at ADI-2 Pro’s input, the connection related hum will be reduced by the same amount.