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Realtek HDA—Effects of default format+shared mode? Should I go higher?, [TOS #6: was "Realtek HDA Driver"]
Anakunda
post Mar 31 2012, 15:32
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HI !!
What does the default format in HDA control panel impact? Default is 24bit / 48kHz. Is this format used for all audio output, ie. anything that I play is down/upsampled to this format on output? What is "shared mode" and when is it used?
Do I have to change this to 24bit / 96kHz if I wanna listen to vinyl rips in full resolution? thx
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[JAZ]
post Mar 31 2012, 16:16
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I do not have that chipset, but I believe you mean the setting in windows Vista/7 (8?) that controls the default output mode when using the standard MME wave out , Directsound or WASAPI in shared mode.

In any of these modes, multiple audio streams would need to be mixed to be played at the same time, and the setting controls the output sample rate and bit depth (Note: it does not mean that it uses 16 or 24bits during mixing. Internally it usually works at 32bits float).

The "shared mode" is different than the "exclusive mode" in that the exclusive mode does not allow multiple applications to play at the same time. For example, the WASAPI driver in foobar2000 uses the exclusive mode, and no other application will be able to play at the same time than foobar, and this also means that foobar decides the output sample rate and bitrate.

A similar thing happens when using ASIO. (Different drivers, same idea).


So the first thing to ask is: which player do you use? and if you know what output audio driver do you use.
And second, there are many threads in these boards about Vinyl, and why those rips might be just a waste of space.
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Kohlrabi
post Mar 31 2012, 16:18
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QUOTE (Anakunda @ Mar 31 2012, 16:32) *
Do I have to change this to 24bit / 96kHz if I wanna listen to vinyl rips in full resolution?

See http://www.hydrogenaudio.org/forums/index....98&hl=vinyl for reference, or Arnold's answer in particular.

In short, you can probably go as low as 12 bits and 40kHz to enjoy Vinyl at "full resolution". Or just stick to the default you have, which is good enough already. Also, keep in mind that you probably are unable to hear (or reproduce with your system) anything beyond 22kHz, which implies 44.1kHz sample rate. The dynamic range of your vinyl is much lower than the 24 bits you use per default, too.

This post has been edited by Kohlrabi: Mar 31 2012, 16:20


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Roseval
post Mar 31 2012, 16:47
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In general if you have Realtek HDA (on-board audio) you have a separate Realtek Audio control panel in Configuration but it appears in the Win audio panel as well.

As [JAZ} pointed out, the Win default is DS (Direct Sound). It allows for multiple audio stream e.g. playing some music and system sounds at the same time.
As a sound card can run at only 1 sample rate at the time, everything must be resampled to the default e.g. 24/48.

If you want to get rid of the re-sampling, a media player supporting WASAPI exclusive like JRiver, MusicBee, Foobar will take care of automatic sample rate switching (within the limits of the rates supported by your hardware).



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Anakunda
post Mar 31 2012, 16:59
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I already tried the WASAPI mode in foobar which produced no sound.
Using DS: Speakers (Realtek HD Audio).
So in short, if I change the format for "shared mode" from 24/48 to 24/96, will the quality of played vinyl rips which are 24/96 improve or will be the same, and has the 24/96 mode any disadvantages, like spending more CPU resources?



This post has been edited by Anakunda: Mar 31 2012, 17:03
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db1989
post Mar 31 2012, 17:07
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Firstly, check the specifications of your hardware to determine what its maximal/native sampling rate is.

Then, assuming it does support 24/96—
QUOTE (Anakunda @ Mar 31 2012, 16:59) *
So in short, if I change the format for "shared mode" from 24/48 to 24/96, will the quality of played vinyl rips which are 24/96 improve or will be the same
—the fidelity of the output to the input signal will improve, but this has no bearing on whether [1] the rip contains any useful data beyond 24 kHz (or lower), or [2] you will hear any difference even if it does. In other words, “quality” may not be the right word; it’s a loaded term, especially where high resolutions and vinyl are concerned, and on a board one of whose main foci is perceptual quality.

This post has been edited by db1989: Mar 31 2012, 17:09
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Anakunda
post Mar 31 2012, 17:11
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Okay, thanks.
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Roseval
post Mar 31 2012, 17:16
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In the Realtek control panel you can check what sample rates are supported.
You probably have to set Foobar to 24 bits


If it fails you, try JRiver or MusicBee


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db1989
post Mar 31 2012, 17:18
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I don’t mean to imply that you have to stop talking about it! It’s just that it’s already likely that 24/48 would sound fine to you. If you have 24/96 rips and your hardware supports them, you’re probably just as well to play them like that rather than to resample; but it isn’t likely to have any audible effect. So, it’s a question much more of logistics than of quality. And, again, any evaluation of “quality” depends upon what you mean: fidelity to the source vs. perceptual transparency or the lack thereof.
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stephan_g
post Apr 30 2012, 14:02
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JFTR, the combination of Foobar w/ WASAPI plugin and Realtek HDA hasn't been working too well for me. Attempting 24 bit output always gave me a weird "out of memory" error. I ended up using ASIO via ASIO4All, which possibly contains some workarounds for driver issues. The recording side seems to be a different story altogether.
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