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Is there a difference between a usb 2.0 port and audio grade usb 2.0 port

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#1
I cannot seem to fin out the answer to this when I search the internet and maybe that is because it’s a hyped up thing and not real.

When I look at music servers some of the more expensive units tout having audio grade USB ports for better music playback. Is there really a measurable difference and if so what is that? Calling all myth busters
 

SIY

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#2
Perhaps asking the peddlers of these "audiophile" USB ports for supporting data (actual data) might answer the question.
 
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RayDunzl

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#3

Joachim Herbert

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#4
Snake oil, imho.
 

SIY

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#6

DDF

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#7
There could be a science-based (measurable) case for this, using non-throttling USB galvanic isolation. My laptop and usb DAC had such a ground loop comparability issue it was causing bit hits (easily audible) until I went to a doubly insulated 2 prong power brick on the lap top, to break it.

I could have used USB optical isolation, but the affordable ones based on the Analog Devices chip limit max sampling rate to 96kHz vs "audiophile" 192kHz and the AD chip also degrades the jitter notably (who knows if its audible, but it is measurable).
 

M00ndancer

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#8
When I look at music servers some of the more expensive units tout having audio grade USB ports for better music playback. Is there really a measurable difference and if so what is that?
No, unless you have a ground loop.
 
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#11
I used to work on USB compliance at work. Perhaps I could shed some light into this. The products (cable/host/device) 'd better be certified with USB logos on them. That means that they have gone through vigorous testing at the USB compliance workshop or at one of the designated test labs before receiving such logo from USB-IF. The USB device/host needs to support isochronous mode for audio streaming. Everything else is more or less snake oil.

Fortunately, I am still a USB-IF member. So I can look up the integrator list who has received certification in the member area. I wouldn't pay a price premium for any host/device/hub/cable that is not certified. The amount of engineering effort, $$, and complexity to achieve certification increase almost exponentially from USB2, super speed to super speed plus with Type C power delivery.
 
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amirm

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#15
Before amir answers I'll take a guess it's either

Gigabyte - "DAC-UP" USB ports or

MSI - "USB Audio Power Pro" port or

Asus - "TrueVolt USB" port
You smart you. :)
 

RayDunzl

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#16
I have one on my motherboard but not tested it yet. I don't expect to find a difference but always good to have the data....
The claim I see is cleaner power on the DAC UP ports...

I'd suggest to be sure to test with a worst-offender DAC in addition to whatever other DAC.
 

Tks

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#17
Before amir answers I'll take a guess it's either

Gigabyte - "DAC-UP" USB ports or

MSI - "USB Audio Power Pro" port or

Asus - "TrueVolt USB" port

Ooooh that's what that is.. I have that on the VII Hero Mobo. I thought it was a gimmick. Thinking all manufacturers had this with respect to at least all the rear I/O ports.
 

Music1969

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#18
Thinking all manufacturers had this with respect to at least all the rear I/O ports.
Not all the motherboards of Gigabyte/MSI/Asus have these ports though. Usually it's their more expensive gaming spec boards.

I think they all claim the same thing - separate lower noise 5Vdc power to these special ports.

They claim this results in better USB signal integrity ..
 
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Jerry Sobel
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Thread Starter #20
Another related question. From a measurement perspective is an AES connection to the DAC similar, better or worse than a connection by USB from the music server?
 
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