Is computer audio a bust?


In recent months, I have had several audio acquaintances return to CDPs claiming improved SQ versus their highly optimized computer transports (SS drives, external power supplies, etc, etc).

I wanted to poll people on their experiences with computer "transports." What variables have had the most impact on sonics? If you bailed on computers, why?

I personally have always believed that the transport, whether its a plastic disc spinner or computer, is as or more important than the dac itself and thus considerable thought and energy is required.

agear
I've petitioned congress to create national "Computer Audio is Dead!" and "USB cables should not be used for anything except tying shoes!" days for Audiolabyrinth and Cerrot, respectively. I admire Agear and others for attempting honest, rational discourse, but I'm quite certain that Audiolabyrinth and Cerrot are as interested in discussing both sides of the issue as John Corzine is in talking about where the missing MF Global money went. You guys can keep trying, but you'll probably have better luck getting the neighbor's dog to explain why he picked the last place he excreted his breakfast.
Agear,

As I understand it, USB asynch mode is one of several mmodes of operation for USB. It is intended to assure bandwidth,which is needed for high res audio to stream fast enough to keep up with playback. It also allows the "peripheral"device to be in control. You want that to be a DAC of high quality which includes an accurate clock to keep jitter minimal. In lieu of that, computer/server assumes that responsibility and other modes not as well suited for audio sound quality may come into play.
I probably should not enter into these conversation because like the man said "you don't spit into the wind". Having said that I love my server and it sounds fantastic. "You don't pull on supermans cape". Now cables I have tried some and owned some very expensive highly reviewed cables(speaker, inter connectors and USB). But I only bought when the price was so good I knew could sell with out loosing money. I am yet to hear any significant difference or any at all for that matter. "You don't mess around with Jim". Du du du du du du du..... http://img1.wikia.nocookie.net/__cb20130830065058/cardfight/images/7/7a/Smiley-face-1600x1200-wallpaper-775678.jpg
Hi Bcgator, I enjoyed your post, you are correct, however, I will not take the plunge of computer audio on my main system that I am tring to build, computer audio along with a vinyl set-up would be great for a second system that I will be building, this will have an active pre-amp or likly an intergrated amp, Here is one thing no one on this thread realized, at the cost of the cables I have and that I will be up-grading to, I cannot afford all them cables!, to keep my main system as simple as I can for pure signal transmission, and attempt to get the clearest sound I can afford, the main system will have nothing but an interconnect and speaker cables, and jumper cables on the speakers, these fellas do not know that I agree that I should be up with the times, it would be fun to do a second system consisting of computer audio and a turn table set-up, of course I already have the Tara Labs model The One 1-meter balanced analog interconnect and 6ft speaker cables in the closet to start a second system, I will ask these gentleman for their help with computer audio when the time comes, when the money is available!, right now, this main system is killing me money wise!, I do not have regrets for the cables I have on that system at all, these two systems will be two different anaimals, the main, the Best state of the art that I can afford, the second would be a build to a particular price point consisting of the computer audio these chaps have talked me into, all I was saying all along was that a usb cable and the usb terminations cannot perform to the caliber of the cables I have now on the main system, I would be very happy to get some performance out of alot cheaper cables, the Tara The one is no cheap cable by no means!, It's performance is very musical and I will always love the sound of that model, However, the cost of out-fitting with that cable model will not cause a re-morgage of the house like the cables on the main system!, cheers gentleman.
You don't use USB for audio. You use SPDIF, USB is too polluted. There is no proper way of using USB. It transmits data in packets, not streams.