The Oppo is regarded as a very adept piece of audio equipment by many, so I would have to say - yes, it would improve the sound.
I currently enjoy many internet radio stations and find their level of performance quite acceptable - so much better than FM :-)
I stream from my iMac into a Schiit bifrost DAC via USB.
Hope that helps
Hi. Have you used the Oppo?
No I haven't, but a friend has one that he uses for all his digital needs, including audio streaming, and it sounds very good.
One thing I did to improve things was to use an Ethernet connection between the computer I stream from and the Modem, opting not to use wireless - I found this eliminated drop-outs and the sound was significantly better.
Thanks Willie. Can you say how your friend connects his system?
Ptss - Apologies for the delay - I emailed him to get the options he had tried
He was running a long S/DIF cable from his computer to the Oppo.
He has a TOTL Denon A/V receiver
From the Oppo he's tried a couple of options...
1. Analogue IC's from Oppo to his A/V receiver
2. HDMI from his Oppo to his A/V receiver
He could not tell any difference
He also tried a Wireless LAN connection to the Oppo which he didn't like - he suspects his wireless router is the problem.
I took a look at the Oppo Manual and it pretty much has every option covered, so it's very versatile.
Personally, I've tried wireless and Ethernet connections to both my iMac and Apple TV and found Ethernet to provide better results - i.e. no dropouts. But many report great success with wireless.
I've tried USB and Optical from my iMac into my Schiit Bifrost DAC and found them to sound identical in my setup. The caveat being the iMac optical cannot transfer 24/192 music files.
The Apple TV was perhaps the most problematic, especially for WAV file streaming from the computer, and the poorest sound quality. But it was still very good using the optical output to the DAC - just not as good as the iMac/USB combination.
FYI: The USB cable I use is a double cable joined at the USB plug that goes into the DAC - one cable for the signal and one for the USB power - I use an Enercell USB Power Adapter to power the USB circuits inside the DAC, a strange, but common practice I believe. It eliminates most of the issues attributed to USB digital transfers - the Bifrost's USB implementation takes care of the rest.
That's about it - considering the source, the sound quality I experience is exceptional for most stations, but you can hear a difference switching to the low-res stations.
Hope that helps
Yes, thanks Willie. I listen to some classical FM on a tiny desktop radio or my notebook while working. Very low sound level; just enough to help me ignore serious tinnitus. I'm just wondering if FM sound over the internet can sound as good as my CD's? If so, the most economical ways to use my stereo system? Some FM channels have nice classical programming. Cheers.
Ptss - radio stations that broadcast over the internet almost always sound better than FM and can be "near" CD quality.
What connectivity options does your laptop have - USB, Optical, S/PDIF ?
USB is perhaps the most utilized laptop interface and provides good quality, but you will read of "USB related issues" - these can be overcome with a little effort if you feel the need to address them - again, that is your choice.
Optical and S/PDIF are more straight forward
All of the above options would only require a DAC
The Oppo accepts all of the above interfaces, or you can opt for a LAN connectivity approach, but that can get more complicated so your "technical adeptness" could be challenged with a LAN approach.
I have the Schiit Bifrost DAC, which comes with S/PDIF and Optical as standard and USB as an optional upgrade. I stream internet radio and music from my hard drive. I can control station/song selection from my iMac using iTunes (my preferred interface), but I also have the ability to control iTunes from my tablet or Droid phone from anywhere in the house.
There are many programs for library management and remote playback which interfaces with many components, including the Oppo, so you might want to look into those also.
There are other DAC's available at many price points and they all offer "quality sound" - it all depends on what level of quality YOU require.
The Oppo is a very flexible approach and provides very nice DVD/CD capabilitites, but it wouldn't be my choice if my requirements were simply to listen to internet radio.
It really boils down to how good you want it to sound and what are your "key requirements".
From what I have read above - a DAC, such as the Bifrost, would be an acceptable approach at this time.
BTW, the Bifrost is my only digital source in my audio system - it's that good - when you tweak it :-)
And it starts at $349 + $100 for the optional USB interface. I can also highly recommend their UBER analogue upgrade.
If you like Classical stream Wisconsin Public Radio.
Thanks Willie. I use a Lenovo Thinkpad-I will get details; a bit tight for time just now. Does the Bitfrost sound as good as a Oppo 105D? Happy holidays :-)
Thanks Schubert. I'm listening to it on my laptop now. Do you use it through your stereo?
Ptss - sorry, have no listening experience with the Oppo. A friend has one and he likes it a lot
The base Bifrost is very good, but if you treat it to good interconnect and power cables it is exceptional. Very high resolution, fast dynamics and cavernous image with lots of space between performers.
The only drawback is it does not come with a remote, so you have to get off your butt to change inputs.
It is very well made and their upgrades provide discern able improvements.
Hope that helps
Season's greatings :-)
Thanks Willie. Much appreciated. Cheers. Happy listening.
Ptss, I live in the NE area of the Twin Cities metro and can
pick up the signal from UW-River Falls about 20 miles away as the crow flies, using a Terk amplified antenna on my 3rd floor condo balcony.
Schooby, I've just found "HDiRadio.com". Connects with "RADIO 1". WOW . They claim to broadcast at 256k--they claim is 8 times normal. The sound seems good on my Lenovo notebook computer through whatever this laptop uses for sound card. (I've never looked) It's playing some harpsichord at the moment and I'm impressed with the clarity. I was previously listening to a 50's and 60's channel through them and the sound of Patsy Cline was as clear - clearer- than I've ever heard from radio. Definitely good enough to be enjoyable. A happy surprise.
Now learning about BBC quality by decoding only once, DAB, etc. A new world to me.
One of the strangest thing about the USA is most Americans always assume we have the best of anything.
If you live overseas for any length of time it dawns on you that this is seldom true.
Politicians propound that incessantly so I think it's understandable. I am enjoying the programming - and lack of noise ie 'chatter' on WPR that you put me onto recently. Elegant enjoyment. An ongoing gift, thanks again.
You made my day Ptss ! The on-air people are the best group I've heard either here or in Europe.
A goldilocks and porridge situation.
The typical bitrate for DAB is 128 kps and as a result has sound quality lower than FM...Wikipedia
I realize. Thanks Phasecorrect. Btw, I am very sensitive to phase so bought a Spectral pre with a very clean phase reverse capability. I find the correct phase much more enjoyable.
I bought a vintage FM tuner...now granted you have to have a a good signal and something that is worth listening to...but I have been pleasantly surprised...it rivals my HD radio tuner...which is similiar to DAB arguement...stations often splice bandwith at the cost of additional channels.
I'm a complete newbie to computer audio but so far have found the sound from my Macbook iTunes into a Cambridge Audio DacMagic more than eminently listenable. I also am using a trial of Amarra 3.0.3 but cannot hear any difference whether Amarra is running or not.
One classical station I found which I love is from Venice, Italy.
Phase, glad to hear your FM rivals your HD tuner.
I am still enjoying my Hitachi FT920 tuner I bought new about "78.
But, I am very interested to know if using an OPPO 105D would improve the sound?
My opinion is that it doesn't matter what you are using to listen to online radio it is not going to sound hi-fi. The reason being is that most radio stations only broadcast at 128Kbs mp3. A little better than a really strong FM signal but no where near CD quality. No DAC or jitter removal device will fix that.
I personally use a Sonos connect because it's interface is really nice and has the ability to connect to other services like Spotify and Tidal which are higher quality sound.
Just scored a Yamaha t-2...wow...this sounds way more open and natural than online radio which is typically mp2 or worse.
That period is known for decent sound, my Hitachi is about 78/79.