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Which is the best DSP option: DIRAC vs Acourate vs Audiolense vs RePhase vs ?

tifune

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Have you actually done this by chance? It's a vast understatement to say getting in contact with anyone at Auro for basic tech Q&A is like pulling teeth. I got so desperate I emailed every office in the world. Korea actually answered me, but they just forwarded me to EU who never responded.

I *really* want to do this, but I have so many Q's. For example, what interface(s) go beyond 7.1? Even if 7.1 is sufficient, can I map the channels as I see fit or am I stuck with the traditional layouts? Due to my space constraints, 7.1 could work but I would forego the center channel and use top surround instead.

That is: L/R, fr Height L/R, surround L/R, surround back, VoG, sub. I'd love to add surround height and center height, but I can't find any interface that will commit to supporting it. Even higher price tiers like UA say "up to 7.1 with folddown". I'm not even sure what folddown is?

Finally, I'm a Windows guy. Getting a small/cheap Mac just for this purpose doesn't bother me much, because I've always wanted to learn OS X anyways, but by the time you add all that up + some flavor of room correction I could just get a Denon 4700 and save myself a few weekends. No CH, though, but this is nearfield so that's probably fine.

NuGen Halo and Penteo are out there for Win10. NuGen has a few tricks to get past 7.1 limits, again just not sure it's worth the hassle - MOTU mk5 $600, Penteo/NuGen $500, Dirac multichannel $500, the risk of (basically) going it alone = priceless?

Denon 4700s can be had for $2k, less if I'm patient, and I already own the Audyssey app...
 

ernestcarl

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Haven't used the other options. I do use JRSS with JRiver (5.1 and 7.1) and some rePhase created filters. The only reason for me to upgrade would be to purchase an AVR for Atmos/DTS-X/Auro 3D -- eventually. Or then again, maybe not. We'll see...
 

Trdat

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Haven't used the other options. I do use JRSS with JRiver (5.1 and 7.1) and some rePhase created filters. The only reason for me to upgrade would be to purchase an AVR for Atmos/DTS-X/Auro 3D -- eventually. Or then again, maybe not. We'll see...
I am in the same boat, if I can get SINAD with the AVR to match my current triamp set up perhaps it is worth considering. But then you have to find a way to triamp the main speakers on the AVR. Just for Aura 3d not sure if its worth it. The plug in option although somewhat expesive I can see there is a market for it, for people like us who would just spend the 1k on our current set up rather a new AVR.

Have you compared JRSS with Dolby surround formats?
 

fluid

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Have you actually done this by chance?
Not to upmix stereo to a multichannel system no.
I *really* want to do this, but I have so many Q's. For example, what interface(s) go beyond 7.1? Even if 7.1 is sufficient, can I map the channels as I see fit or am I stuck with the traditional layouts? Due to my space constraints, 7.1 could work but I would forego the center channel and use top surround instead.
There are a number of MOTU, RME, or other pro interfaces that can address significant numbers of channels.

Jriver itself can address up to 32 separate channels.

I don't know if this multichannel talk has much to do with the OP's question though.
 

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ernestcarl

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Have you compared JRSS with Dolby surround formats?

There was at least one person in the JRiver forum who said he preferred JRSS to Dolby prologic IIx due to the "better" way it handles bass-management and the LFE channel. Sorry, can't remember the specific thread. But I've not really tested that since I've never owned an AVR to compare between the two. So far, I'm quite satisfied with their native upmixing/downmixing algorithm.
 

Snarfie

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Dominikz did a indepth test/comparison where he also included Mathaudio Room Eq in.

 
OP
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JRS

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I use Jriver on an i3 NUC in a Fanless case with Windows 10 and an Android tablet with the Jremote2 app to control playback and volume.

Jriver is a great host for processing with convolution, PEQ and the ability to access VST plugins. Combined with any of the decent pro audio interfaces channels and processing should be scalable. While there can always be hardware of software conflicts there seem to be less and less over time and I have had no issue running windows for audio processing. Jriver occasionally hangs when settings are changed and VST's seem to be the main cause for me, in normal use I have never had a hang or crash happen.

I use DRC-FIR which is the free alternative to Acourate and Audiolense as far as overall correction goes. Rephase can be part of the setup for crossover filters and other tweaks but it has no built in processing and target algorithm like the others. A manual attempt using REW and it's Frequency dependent window and Auto EQ functions can be used but it is not the same as the processing in the other programs.

Acourate and Audiolense are more flexible and configurable than Dirac, I value this and do not consider Dirac to be comparable to the other two.
Being able to create the crossover filters and the overall correction inside the same program and have it output the convolution filters for each channel should not be underestimated. The same overall result can be had with DRC-FIR and rephase or other solution for crossover filters, but it is nowhere near as simple to setup.
Very helpful, thank you. What sort of plug-ins do you use? Dirac was a lat addition to the list, primarily because of the occasional rave review I read, but again these are typically w/o context. I really value the ability to correct the speaker and fit to a target curve, vs relying on software to "transform" the entire system. That may be force of habit from DEQX use, or it just intuitively a better approach. So OK, scratch DIRAC.
 
OP
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JRS

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Acourate and Audiolense are state of the art EQ, with DIRAC being a good second.
Thank you, this helps to harden my decision. Maybe when I go surround sound, DIRAC or some other software will be better suited. I also favor having a "portable" solution to say a bedroom set-up 2 way. Lots of hardware that can handle 2.2 or less.
 
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JRS

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i ask this particular question myself since like 2 years.... since there dont seem to be "set and forget" solutions, specially in the lower price range...(tho i still need to get a measurement mic :D soon(tm)...)
the best (and probably the most cost effective) i came across is using CamillaDSP (with a rpi or computer) with a 4/6/8 channel DAC, probably the greatest thing about this is price and no need for multiple DAC/ADC stages (thats why i refused to buy minidsp, many say the dac was/is not good, atleast in the cheap model)
If I were a younger man and knew something besides absolute, Fortran, Cobol, C++, Basic and something more practical.... You know what they say about old dogs and new tricks. I mean the elegance and the inexpensive aspect has vast appeal, but I value my remaining time on this rock too much, besides I get obsessive about computer stuff, and have been known to spend 24 hours straight trying to debug code that seems faultless.

And a big shout out to @mdsimon2 for writing a step by step tutorial--that deserves sticky status in my book. I do plan to mess around with RPi as a streamer just to get my feet wet and challenge this old noggin, w/o worrying about having a nice Friday night buzz andsuddenly getting drop outs or worse. :confused: In my book, that's a recipe for bad outcomes. Don't ask....
 
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JRS

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It seems though, digital software DSP with XO's are definitely the future of speaker design, regardless of DIY or not.

But the minidsp does not have XLR analog out. I cherish headroom with 4 volts out plus sometimes it's quiter, the OP should take lack of XLR outs in consideration.
I am definitely replacing all my amps as part of the deal. Like the DEQX my Marantz and Adcom multichannel amps are long in tooth (both great Ebay buys) dying one channel at a time. If one more goes, I'll be using a cheap Pioneer receiver to drive the tweeters. So yes to that: all XLR and Neutrik speak-on connectors. Thanks for the reminder.
 
OP
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JRS

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Not to upmix stereo to a multichannel system no.

There are a number of MOTU, RME, or other pro interfaces that can address significant numbers of channels.

Jriver itself can address up to 32 separate channels.

I don't know if this multichannel talk has much to do with the OP's question though.
Not yet, but certainly paying attention. Currently my sights are set on the Monoprice pre/pro, but the discussion is welcome. Three months ago I couldn't have even phrased my question. It is a jungle of solutions and as stated multiple times on multiple threads, what the world needs is a one box solution for 8 (or more) channels and only needing a computer to program it--you know like A DEQX or Trinnov for $1500 vs $7500.
 

abdo123

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in 2022 I wouldn't buy anything that doesn't have Dirac live bass control (not bass management).
 

DWPress

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But the minidsp does not have XLR analog out.
The miniDSP 4x10 does indeed have balanced in/out but you have to use the Phoenix terminals to XLR. It works fine, using it right now as my Okto is currently out of commission.

@JRS Check out the my post in my signature for one way to route multichannel EQ and XO duties with a computer and multichannel DAC if you're interested.
 
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fluid

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Very helpful, thank you. What sort of plug-ins do you use? Dirac was a lat addition to the list, primarily because of the occasional rave review I read, but again these are typically w/o context. I really value the ability to correct the speaker and fit to a target curve, vs relying on software to "transform" the entire system. That may be force of habit from DEQX use, or it just intuitively a better approach. So OK, scratch DIRAC.
I use Metaplugin for Mid Side routing and processing, Voxengo MSED, Fab Filter for EQ and Equilibrium for Linear Phase EQ.
My approach has changed from using DRC to hit a target, to using DRC to force the response to flat and add back in the tilt I want by using a set of octave spaced PEQ shelving filters. By changing the gain and Q of the filters I can tune it more easily to a balance that sounds right.
 
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JRS

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I use Metaplugin for Mid Side routing and processing, Voxengo MSED, Fab Filter for EQ and Equilibrium for Linear Phase EQ.
My approach has changed from using DRC to hit a target, to using DRC to force the response to flat and add back in the tilt I want by using a set of octave spaced PEQ shelving filters. By changing the gain and Q of the filters I can tune it more easily to a balance that sounds right.
Interesting. I need to learn more about plug-ins. The use of shelving filters seems elegant, vs going back and diddling with the shape of the curve ad nauseum. You get one part right, but screw up another so doing it in chunks makes a great deal of sense.
 

fluid

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Interesting. I need to learn more about plug-ins. The use of shelving filters seems elegant, vs going back and diddling with the shape of the curve ad nauseum. You get one part right, but screw up another so doing it in chunks makes a great deal of sense.
That's what I have found, it is easier to compare filter settings because the overall balance isn't baked into it too.

This is what it looks like, I like Fab Filter's interface and sound but there are other cheaper or free solutions too.

index.php
 
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JRS

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The miniDSP 4x10 does indeed have balanced in/out but you have to use the Phoenix terminals to XLR. It works fine, using it right now as my Okto is currently out of commission.

@JRS Check out the my post in my signature for one way to route multichannel EQ and XO duties with a computer and multichannel DAC if you're interested.
OCTO on the fritz? Major bummer as we used to say. Can it be fixed here?
I do like your set-up; seems like the least number of parts in the pipe, and all solid gear. I gotta respect anyone who commits 2 x 6 cubic feet for bass mains.

And so am I understanding that everything is done in Roon including filters? If not, which software?
Thanks.
 

DWPress

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My Okto got hit with a surge (through a surge protector) when power was restored to the property, hoping to hear back from Okto for repair or replace. If not, I'll get a Motu MK5 once they are available again and sacrifice good looks and a remote.

I used the process linked in my signature when the Okto was working to individually equalize each driver with near field measurements in REW and create XO filters with rePhase, time align, mess with phase etc.

As of right now I'm running things through my old miniDSP 4x10 with its onboard XO and PEQ. I'm on a Mac so I use an app called SoundSource to host an AU reverb plugin called Sir3 that runs just my LR convolution filters systemwide for all apps. The convolution filters could just as easily be hosted through Roon or jRiver but then they'd only be effective for audio out of those apps though in Windows you can use jRiver's WMD driver with other apps for sound routing.

I've routed my system through both Roon and jRiver on both Mac and PC using their onboard DSP to create XO, channel routing to 8 speakers, EQ and host convolution. It can be done for sure but the tools available for creating the XO slopes are pretty limiting. So it can be done but there are better ways to do it. You'll still need a decent multichannel DAC regardless.

I'm not a huge miniDSP fan, there are reasons why I went with the Okto but it is a pretty solid piece of kit, mine's almost 10 years old. But it will do everything you asked in your OP. I feed mine with an original Topping D10 which passes USB audio to the miniDSP via SPIF to bypass the A/D converters. Analog sources come through my MSB ADD-1 to the miniDSP via AES though I'm sure if I get a Motu the A/D stage will be better.
 

Trdat

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From what I am gathering this product is more about mixing and mastering stereo tracks into surround? Nothing is very clear on there website. Or have I understood incorrectly and it is a simple software that allows for on the fly reproduction of stereo into surround...?
Have you actually done this by chance?

Plus you replied no to this question so I am a bit confused to whether you use it for the simiplicity of upmixing?
 
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