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Dirac Mac Mini Help

RickyC34

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Hello all. I recently purchased a Mac mini to run two separate dac's running Dirac live bass control. I'm upgrading from a DDRC-24 and currently use that as one of my dac's along with the Schiit Modious.

I'm new to Mac but not Dirac. Current system 2.2 Mac Mini, DLBC, Schiit Modious( next upgrade), Sub dac currently Mini Dsp DDRC (topping d10s coming tomorrow), 2 x RSL speedwoofer MK II, Buchardt S400 Mk II. I would have gone the Topping DM 7 route but my current gear is not balanced.

I have combined the two dac's into an aggregate device and have run into some problems with playback. When playing back audio only audio from one Dac is playing. What's odd is if I start Dirac's volume calibration all 4 outputs work. Take some measurements, hit save, playback music, and the Subs are off. Switched the RCA's' and the speakers were off. Ok, so both dac's are working. I got digging on this thread and others for a solution but have not had any luck.

I saw that some users had luck with the loopback software so figured I would try that. At this point, if I had to pay $100 more to get things rolling I was willing. I created a 4-channel pass-thru device, created output decided 1 & 2 and 3 & 4, added my 2 dac's as monitors, and linked channels accordingly. Pass-thru 1 / C 1 / Ch 1 Dac 1
2 / Ch 2 / Ch 2 Dac 1
3/ Ch 3 / Ch 1 Dac 2
4 / Ch 4 / Ch 2 Dac 2
Customer channel config - I have selected a custom configuration. Stereo then added two subwoofers.

Audio Settings - Output loopback is selected with each of the 4 channels selected.

In the Mac MIDI settings, I can right-click the player ( dirac virtual audio device ) to configure speakers. I currently have quadraphonic selected. (not sure if this is important)

What's odd is that when I play music through a source I noticed that only outputs number 1 and 2 were the only ones producing any signal at all.

My results are the same if I change the audio settings to output from my aggregate device.

Any help is much appreciated as the timer on this DLBC trial is ticking : )
 

phoenixdogfan

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Check the audio setting on your Dirac Player. Use custom setup, make sure channels 1-4 only are checked. Also check your custom channel configuration. It should show as a "Stereo" configuration and your input 1 should output to channel 1, input two to channel 2, then add two subwoofers to output to channel 3 and channel 4. The channel config on the Dirac Live Processor should read "custom".
 
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RickyC34

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Does anything stick out to you that is incorrect?
 

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RickyC34

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Yes. It's a placeholder for the subwoofer dac. Topping d10s should be here tomorrow. Dirac is off an all configs on the unit are set to default.
 

phoenixdogfan

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Ok, if both DACS are being sent their output via USB, then somehow, I think the left has to be USB 1, right USB 2, Sub 1 USB 3, and sub 2 USB 4, and I think i see that on the routing, but it looks like on the miniDSP Dac you are sending the output to the USB outs. Shouldn't the output from the Mac be to the miniDSP USB input 1 and USB input 2? I'm not really familiar with how the Apple is able to sync two disparate USB Dacs, the only way to do this in Windows is with Voicemeter Bannana and that software has no way to sync two usb dacs. Does the Apple have a way to do that, if not won't the two dacs drift out of sync?
 
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RickyC34

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For some reason, the DDRC shows 4 inputs as seen on the previous screenshot I attached. They are labeled USB IN 1-4. Are you by chance looking at this? No other Dac I've attached shows this on that screen The DDRC out's are USB out 1-2. Maybe I'm mistaken but I don't believe I edit the routing as suggested.
 
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RickyC34

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Apple has dirft control when combining sources.
 

droid2000

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Please try these settings:
  1. In the Dirac Audio Settings make sure the output is set to Aggregate Device
  2. In the MIDI settings change the aggregate device speaker configuration from Quadraphonic to Stereo
  3. In the MIDI settings enable Use This Device For Sound Output on the aggregate device
 
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RickyC34

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Please try these settings:
  1. In the Dirac Audio Settings make sure the output is set to Aggregate Device
  2. In the MIDI settings change the aggregate device speaker configuration from Quadraphonic to Stereo
  3. In the MIDI settings enable Use This Device For Sound Output on the aggregate device
I'll make the above adjustments and report back tomorrow. I have the day off and the house to myself. Primed for some measurements! Hitting the sack for the night. Thank you for the response.
 
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RickyC34

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I made the adjustments and when I play audio I can hear the signal but there's a lot of static/crackling. Only 2 of the four outputs are playing (speakers no subs). I have a couple of questions about the recommended settings. On number two we moved from a 4 speaker setup to a stereo setup. Is this because the custom config from the Dirac processor is set to stereo? On the MIDI speaker config settings, I selected stereo. I can choose my two dac's at the top. If I choose both apply /done, then do back in only the first dac is selected. I assume this is because only two of the four outputs are selected in a stereo config. On setting 3 I made the suggested settings but was surprised the Dirac virtual audio device wouldn't be the playback device. Would room eq still be applied this way?
 

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RickyC34

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On the Midi settings if I select the Mini DSP 1st and then the Schiit I have subs but not base. It's clear the issue is my device is only seeing the aggregate device as only 1 dac - whichever is listed first. It's still the strangest thing to me that during Dirac volume calibration it shows two speakers and two subs with output coming from each during all measurements. I tried to exclude the mini dsp as a part of the problem and made my aggregate device include the Shiit + my Oled. Opt. out from the Oled into the Minid dsp. Same exact result.
My next step if I don't receive any other suggestions is to uninstall all Dirac and Minidsp software from my computer and try again with the Topping dac (D10s) once it arrives this evening. I would be surprised if this works though as it seems to me I have a routing error somewhere with how the Dirac virtual audio device is seeing the aggregate device. It seems the loopback software would work but again, on the 4 outputs from the pas-thru device there's only signal coming from outputs 1 and 2.
 

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phoenixdogfan

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In your Dirac Live Processor, you will find three lines in the upper left hand corner, click on that and it will bring up a drop down menu. Select audio settings. You will see a box listing "Active Output Channels", since you need four channels, make sure the box has the four channels, and check all four of them to make them active. I think you only have two channels active in the Dirac Processor itself.
 
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RickyC34

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In your Dirac Live Processor, you will find three lines in the upper left hand corner, click on that and it will bring up a drop down menu. Select audio settings. You will see a box listing "Active Output Channels", since you need four channels, make sure the box has the four channels, and check all four of them to make them active. I think you only have two channels active in the Dirac Processor itself.
Is this correct ?
Has anyone had luck with or knowledge of the black hole software? reading about it in the manual now and may see if that's a workaround. https://confluence.dirac.services/pages/viewpage.action?pageId=142843074
 

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droid2000

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On number two we moved from a 4 speaker setup to a stereo setup. Is this because the custom config from the Dirac processor is set to stereo?

I think I saw it in a tutorial somewhere, and that's how it's configured in Dirac (Stereo Channels). It's also how my 2.2 system is configured.

On setting 3 I made the suggested settings but was surprised the Dirac virtual audio device wouldn't be the playback device. Would room eq still be applied this way?

Mine works configured either way so I thought it was worth a shot.

Like you said, It's really weird that you can hear all four speakers during volume calibration, but not during music playback. There is a Test button in the Dirac Audio Settings dialog box. Do you hear all four speakers when you press that button?
 
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RickyC34

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I think I saw it in a tutorial somewhere, and that's how it's configured in Dirac (Stereo Channels). It's also how my 2.2 system is configured.



Mine works configured either way so I thought it was worth a shot.

Like you said, It's really weird that you can hear all four speakers during volume calibration, but not during music playback. There is a Test button in the Dirac Audio Settings dialog box. Do you hear all four speakers when you press that button?
played the test tone from the Dirac processor and confirmed all four outputs work there as well. With the Midi setting choosing aggregate device speaker config, I can choose to include each dac but only two outputs. Should I choose one from each dac as I have in the attached picture?
 

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droid2000

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With the Midi setting choosing aggregate device speaker config, I can choose to include each dac but only two outputs. Should I choose one from each dac as I have in the attached picture?

Hmm, I don't think it will work like that.

I'm confident you had Dirac and Midi configured correctly. I think the problem may lie in the audio transmission from the music device to Dirac. For example, I have Roon Server running on my Mac Mini along with the Dirac Processor. The Roon Server can see the Dirac device and is configured to output to it. If I didn't configure Roon to output to Dirac, I would hear just the two main speakers, and not the subs. So I think that's what's happening with you.

What are you using for music playback? It has to be outputting to Dirac.
 
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RickyC34

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I have had a bit of confusion with the "Dirac plug in' and the Dirac "stand-alone".
From my understanding, the plug-in audio is what you're describing.
The stand-alone version applies system-wide correction to all audio being output. Am I mistaken? I was hoping to go the system-wide approach.

I play media via netflix, spotify, youtube, and tidal
 

droid2000

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Oh I see, you are playing music directly from the Mac Mini (no other computer involved?). Go to Sound Settings and make sure Dirac is selected as the output device as shown below:

Screen Shot 2023-06-16 at 3.44.13 PM.png
 
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RickyC34

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Oh I see, you are playing music directly from the Mac Mini (no other computer involved?). Go to Sound Settings and make sure Dirac is selected as the output device as shown below:

View attachment 292742
Looks to be correct. I haven't had this feeling since trying to learn REW 10 years ago lol.
 

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