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Mini PC for Dirac?

AudioSQ

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I've been thinking about trying Dirac, but currently only use a PI as my streamer. Would Dirac run fine on a cheap Windows mini PC or would it need more processing power?

Also curious about the USB out performance on a mini PC. Anybody have a recomendation for a good cheap one? By cheap I guess I'm wondering what the cost of entry would be. I really only use Spotify or Amazon these days so I don't think I'd need anything fancy. I recom it could potentially replace my Roku for Netflix, etc. As well. Thanks!
 

Berwhale

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ad_fletch

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2nd the recommendation for the Asus PN50 if it's to do full PC duty. Alternatively, you could take a punt on a fanless Mini PC like this from Aliexpress (just an example, rather than a specific recommendation). Fanlessness is a desirable attribute in a PC dedicated to audio in my opinion - more so than the multi-core grunt of a Ryzen 4000-based unit. Should still run Dirac fine with any of the Core i3 or i5 CPU options.

As for USB performance, a decent external DAC should be taking care of filtering/reclocking etc, so I wouldn't worry too much unless the USB port is likely to be defective somehow.
 
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AudioSQ

AudioSQ

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Thanks for the input!

The Asus looks like a nice option, but I think it's more PC than I'm looking for. I guess if the cost of the PC and the software is considerably more expensive than a miniDSP it doesn't really make sense for me to go that route.

I've always been too scared to actually order anything from AliExpress.
 

ad_fletch

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I'm sure you could find an equivalent in the US (if that's where you are), even if it's a bit more expensive.

See eg this one on eBay (again no idea of quality, just an example).

If it helps any, I've been shopping on Aliexpress for years now, and there are some great products on there at attractive prices. For example, the speaker selector boxes I could find locally were all awful plasticky things with spring clip or screw terminals, but on Aliexpress you can find ones with proper binding posts and high quality switches/wiring. They even supply internal close-up photos and measurements - try finding that from local shops!

When it comes to Mini PCs, there's a much bigger range than pretty much anywhere else. Reviews on the site itself are probably not worth much, but you can often find reviews on eg Youtube which are helpful.

Usually you can also use Alibaba's equivalent of Paypal for buyer protection (could use a prepaid credit card to be even safer). I haven't had any issues. YMMV.
 
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AudioSQ

AudioSQ

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I was hoping there was an easy recomendation like when somebody asks for a cheap streamer the obvious choice is a PI. I appreciate the input just the same.

It looks like Beelink (and other similar) sells a mini PC for around $250 with an i3 5005U chip and 8 gigs. They also have mini PCs for around the same price with the Celeron J4005 processor. From what I've read it's a better chip because even though it's lower tier it's newer than the i3 offered in that price bracket. It's all a bit above my head. I have no idea if either would work or if which one would be better over the other. I may just buy one and try it out. If it's a flop maybe I'll pass it along to my daughter.
 

Zoomer

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Have you tried the Dirac forum?
 
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AudioSQ

AudioSQ

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Have you tried the Dirac forum?
I didn't even know that had their own forum. I tried Googling it and didn't find anything. Do they have their own forum or are you talking about a sub forum or thread on a different forum?
 

mitchco

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I was hoping there was an easy recomendation like when somebody asks for a cheap streamer the obvious choice is a PI. I appreciate the input just the same.

It looks like Beelink (and other similar) sells a mini PC for around $250 with an i3 5005U chip and 8 gigs. They also have mini PCs for around the same price with the Celeron J4005 processor. From what I've read it's a better chip because even though it's lower tier it's newer than the i3 offered in that price bracket. It's all a bit above my head. I have no idea if either would work or if which one would be better over the other. I may just buy one and try it out. If it's a flop maybe I'll pass it along to my daughter.

Yes, this works perfect. I have a number of these https://www.amazon.com/i3-5005U-Processor-Computer-Graphics-Outputs/dp/B07M6JYWXX I use for my clients for convolution. Never hear the fan and more than enough power. I think the Beelink here is the equivalent: https://www.amazon.com/Beelink-Windows-i3-5005U-Processor-Ethernet/dp/B085RLQN5Z/

Good luck!
 

abdo123

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Dirac is designed in a way that it requires very very little processing power to implement. That’s why it’s very successful as well.

so don’t have any worries about processing ability.

the only thing you need to focus on is the inputs for Dirac.
 

Zoomer

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