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Genelec 8341 setup for PC and AirPlay

awds

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Good Evening,

I recently had the pleasure of hearing someone’s 8330s and was blown away. After searching a bit on them I decided I wanted to make the jump to the 8341 instead.

I ordered two dark grey 8341s along with the GLM kit and volume knob as I think I need this.

Now, I’m going to be connecting these to my PC and would like the ability to maybe use AirPlay occasionally, but not often so my main need is PC.

My budget is $3K for some equipment that I need to make this work. I believe I want to go digital (but I’m also learning the differences to be honest). Does anyone have any recommendations along with how I would setup my system based on the DAC needed?

Would I need a DAC and some kind of streamer like WiiM Pro?

Thanks in advance. I’ve read a few threads here but still unsure on some good dac to make this work for me.
 
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JamesYeomans

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With my 8340As in my kitchen, I use SPIDF:
- a USB to SPDIF out from the iPad and Laptop
- the SPDIF out from an AppleAirportExpress (for AirPlay)
I feed both of those into an SPDIF switch and feed the coaxial SPDIF from that switch direct into the Genelecs. Works great and very cheap.
 

JamesYeomans

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JamesYeomans

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The 8341As (I have two pairs here) will convert everything to digital anyway to do DSP etc, so no need for a DAC.
 

niloiv

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I use a pair of 8341 with my PC. To go full digital, you need a DDC (not DAC but some DAC has DDC function built in) that takes USB or optical output from you PC and outputs SPDIF or AES. Then you could connect to your speakers with SPDIF->AES or AES->AES cable.
I use Douk Audio U2 Pro as already suggested by James. It cost $60 and still going strong for me after 1y of use. Plus all the cables everything cost ~$200 for connection. With $3k budget you could go for a high end DDC like Denafrips Iris, and still have the budget for a 7360 sub (or a 7350 and a lot of beer)?
 

JamesYeomans

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JamesYeomans

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@niloiv @JamesYeomans - would I be looking for a SPDIF to AES cable like #1 below or would I need a converter like the hosa?

#1 cable

#2 hosa
These are the ones I use: https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/15398445458

I have the above cable plugged into this https://www.tindie.com/products/beni_skate/automatic-spdif-opticalrca-audio-switch/ the RCA end, with the XLR connected direct into the AES/EBU socket on the Genelec. I then use a regular 110ohm cable with XLR on both ends to connect the two speakers for passthrough of the other stereo channel
 
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linuxfan

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would I be looking for a SPDIF to AES cable like #1 below or would I need a converter like the hosa?
#1 cable
#2 hosa
An RCA to XLR cable may be considered a brute force solution for interfacing S/PDIF and AES3. It will work fine in 95% of cases, particularly when the connected equipment is well engineered (such as Genelecs).
The Hosa CDL-313, on the other hand, uses active electronics and performs the task in the technically correct fashion - adapting signal levels and impedance, with isolated ground. If you don't mind spending the money, this is a worthwhile tool to have.

Then again, if you know that your primary digital source will be your computer, instead of buying a USB-to-S/PDIF converter, get a USB-to-AES3 converter -
https://www.ebay.com/itm/314525409461
I recommend to select the 16/24/32bit 44.1k-192kHz version - this will mean the unit includes a higher grade of USB decoder chip.
 

JamesYeomans

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An RCA to XLR cable may be considered a brute force solution for interfacing S/PDIF and AES3. It will work fine in 95% of cases, particularly when the connected equipment is well engineered (such as Genelecs).
The Hosa CDL-313, on the other hand, uses active electronics and performs the task in the technically correct fashion - adapting signal levels and impedance, with isolated ground. If you don't mind spending the money, this is a worthwhile tool to have.

Then again, if you know that your primary digital source will be your computer, instead of buying a USB-to-S/PDIF converter, get a USB-to-AES3 converter -
https://www.ebay.com/itm/314525409461
I recommend to select the 16/24/32bit 44.1k-192kHz version - this will mean the unit includes a higher grade of USB decoder chip.
That's quite focussed on the PC use case. Trickier to also incorporate the AirPlay feature that the OP wants as well as a PC hook-up with that solution.
 

linuxfan

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Yeah, I was going by this -
would like the ability to maybe use AirPlay occasionally, but not often so my main need is PC.
The Motu 8D would be an elegant solution -
https://motu.com/products/avb/8d
USB in, coaxial S/PDIF in, AES3 out. The only option it's missing is optical S/PDIF in - that would be a problem if you were using a WiiM Mini (as AirPlay receiver), but no problem if you use a WiiM Pro.
 

MTZ

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You can take a look at the Genelec 9320A reference monitor controller. It is integrated with GLM (measurement mic included) , support usb input from pc and has a digital out with volume control.
I use in my setup and it works great.
 
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awds

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You can take a look at the Genelec 9320A reference monitor controller. It is integrated with GLM (measurement mic included) , support usb input from pc and has a digital out with volume control.
I use in my setup and it works great.
I saw this before, expensive and always out of stock so didn’t give it a shot.
 

MTZ

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It's not cheap. As far as i know it has just been released to the dealers a few weeks ago. It is a good solution for me because i wanted a "simple solution" as possible.
The controller takes USB, AES/EBU and analog inputs and functions as a DAC and headphone amplifier as well.
The integration with GLM was also important for me.

But i think the Motu is a great solution to.
 

PopDV

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Great Genelec setup
Don't understand why did you sell RME ADI?
What do you use now to send audio to monitors (hope AES ebu)?
 
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awds

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PC SPDIF out to HOSA AES out to Genelc setup. All digital and all without the additional equipment I didn’t need. Decided I wasn’t going to connect my airplay left that to my home Sonos system.
 

PopDV

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PC spdif is horrible especially with such high quality studio monitors as Genelec. But if you didn't hear the difference with PC -usb ADI 2- AES Genelec vs PC spdif so it's up to you of course
Hope you used USB to RME then AES to Genelec not PC spdif to RME?
PS when I had 8351 I used lynx studio AES16e (only AES ebu pci-e audio interface) to send signal to Genelec
 
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awds

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PC spdif is horrible especially with such high quality studio monitors as Genelec. But if you didn't hear the difference with PC -usb ADI 2- AES Genelec vs PC spdif so it's up to you of course
Hope you used USB to RME then AES to Genelec not PC spdif to RME?
PS when I had 8351 I used lynx studio AES16e (only AES ebu pci-e audio interface) to send signal to Genelec
I've got a custom-built PC with a dedicated audio card that has SPDIF, not using integrated into the motherboard, though I'm unsure if that detail matters. Currently, I'm not noticing any discernible difference between my current setup and when I was using the RME, which was connected via USB. It's worth mentioning that I'm working out of a luxury rental building during the week, not my usual single-family home where I could crank up the volume to really gauge any significant disparities. It's possible I've got more firepower than necessary for this space, but I'm thoroughly enjoying it, even if I'm not pushing it to its limits
 

tmtomh

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For reference: https://support.genelec.com/hc/en-u...ct-my-digital-SAM-monitors-to-S-PDIF-directly

I've tried with and without impedance convertors up to about 5 meter cable lengths. Both methods work fine, so I got rid of the impedance convertor.
Keep in mind that this Genelec support page says that they recommend not exceeding 8 meters using a 75 ohm SPDIF to AES cable.

So according to Genelec, not only is an SPDIF to AES converter cable fine, but it doesn't even need to be a 110 ohm cable unless you have an 8 meter or longer run.

That means if you have a typical short to medium length run - say 6-8 feet - you can just buy a single analogue RCA to XLR cable for like $10 and be done. That's what I did and I haven't had a single issue.
 
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