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Thread: can a carputer compete with a head unit for sound quality?

  1. #131
    FLAC
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    I was able to pick up the Chaintech AV710 that I mentioned locally. I'm going to try it out in the next few days and see how it compares.

    Good to know about the Alpine only accepting the optical inputs. BTW, the digital RCA connector is called digital coaxial. It looks like an RCA and uses the same 75ohm cable, but it's not called a digital RCA.

    Does the pxa-h701 have an optional wireless infrared remote? I need one in order to control volume, etc... from the steering wheel. It would suck if I can't control the basics through the wheel.

    Do you have the computer setup to have 2 channel digital sound sent out the optical line or do you have it send out all 6 channels and then have the Alpine convert it into 2 channel sound? I'm assuming all the people using the pxa-h701 run a basic stereo sytem (no surround sound) and have the 2 channels then run through the x-over and EQ circuits to provide the 6 RCA outs. You know, 2 channels (maybe summed to mono) for the sub, 2 channels for the mids and 2 channels for the tweets. Unless you are using a passive x-over for the mids and tweets in which case you would only be using 4 RCA outs.

    Is the computer really reduced to a "play" button? That seems like a waste. I guess you still use the PC to store the MP3's and for video's and such, huh?

    What program are you using to play the music, Winamp or something like Foobar2000?
    As I've learned more it just gets more complicated. It seems like a lot of sound through XP or WN2K automatically gets resampled and you need to turn off Windows sound and to use a player like Foobar2000 along with some special drivers to bypass the resampling and send a higher quality output through the optical cable. It all seems pretty confusing. Any of you guys know anything about that? Cause if you are getting real high quality sound through Winamp for instance, it sure would be nice to know.

  2. #132
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    yes - the digital RCA is the same - but it's also called SPDIF - SPDIF can stand for Digital RCA as well as Tos-link - that's why I try to make sure what the individual is talking about when they mention SPDIF

    i'm only running 2 channel period, nothing to do with 5.1, no point IMO

    as for only being reduced to a play button - it's reduced to to just about everything a regular headunit does - track forward, back, pause, lay, stop, etc

    in my specific situation - I wanted something that was seamlesly integrated, and having a computer that did too much stuff would impede on that

    i'm using winamp, simply because it's simple, easy to use and, well, yeah...it worked for me at world finals, so I would think it should be fine

    Jan Bennett
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  3. #133
    FLAC
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    In case anyone wants to know:

    S/PDIF (Sony/Philips Digital Interface) is a standard digital audio transfer file format. There are 2 ways to transfer that data. Digital coaxial and Toslink.

    The coaxial is basically an RCA connector and the data is sent through it digitally.

    The Toslink optical signals have exactly the same format as the electrical S/PDIF signals, they are just converted to light signals (light on/off).

    So SPDIF is the digital format
    Coaxial or Toslink is the transmission method

    Hey Red, during the Iasca judging, you have to play their CD. Did you use a CD or DVD ROM that used a digital output or just a regular CD or DVD ROM and used the regular IDE cable? I'm guessing you used all regular parts, but I just wanted to make sure.

    Also, in your case, did you know you might be able to get even better sound quality using a player like Foobar2000 and setting it up properly? You may be satisfied with using Winamp, but it doesn't have the best output. It's only software, couldn't hurt to try it out, huh?

    Anyone know about a wireless infrared remote for the Alpine controller? I can't find any info. Reviews of the pxa-h701 are also hard to find as well. If anyone has any links saved on their computer, can you post them?

  4. #134
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    I don't compete in IASCA - but it's the same with USACi - you MUST listen to a CD - the CD/DVD-rom that I'm using goes through a USB cable - it's a regular laptop drive housed in an external USB case

    the alpine doesn't have any kind of port for a remote to run it at all.....

    it use to be called the PXA-H700, might have better luck finding reviews on that - this year it's the 701 and the display is sold seperately (before it was sold as a complete unit - some current radios have the ability to controll the processor is why they did this). There were a few changes made betweent he 700 and the 701, but not anything that I can think off of the top of my head that would make a difference....

    I'm sure there are differnt players that will give me better results, but I'm of the mind right now that since it's working, I'm not going to mess with it....lol

    btw - wilson adcock seemed to think that it was perfectly fine, and if he said it's fine....hehehe
    Jan Bennett
    FS: VW MKIV Bezel for 8" Lilliput - 95% Finished

    Please post on the forums! Chances are, someone else has or will have the same questions as you!

  5. #135
    FLAC
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    I was thinking the controller may have an IR reciever on it.

  6. #136
    Super Moderator. If my typing sucks it's probably because I'm driving.... turbocad6's Avatar
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    the only difference between the 700 & 701 besides the fact that the 701 didn't include the display, is that the 700 lights up green or orange selectable, while the 701 is just blue illumination.... otherwise there identical.... the only way to use a remote with it is to use an alpine head unit also.... unless someone hacks the ai-link( I wish!!)

    the 700/701 looks for a toslink signal.... if it finds it then that's what it uses as an input.... when the "lights go out" on the input... it then drops back to regular rca inputs....

    if your running a pc right into it, you should use the volume control of the pc.... steering wheel remote should control the pc really...

    one of the nice things about the alpine is that it can use phantom surround to project a phantom center... which is much better that attempting to do a real center channel in a car....

  7. #137
    FLAC
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    On the f-bodies (camaro, trans am) the steering wheel uses a single wire. I'm using the PAC SWI-2
    http://www.mobilcaraudio.com/catalog...160/984000.htm
    to control my Clarion CD player. It will work with almost all IR remotes. I plan to use Girder and a simple IR reciever to convert my steering wheel controls to operate the computer. Plus I can use other remotes (with more buttons) to control all kinds of things.

    So if the controller had a wireless reciever, like a headunit has, Alpine might have an optional remote for it. I may have to ask Alpine about that as it may not be commonly known.

    Oh yea, Turbocad6, I never lost any info from the EPX2 when the battery is removed. In fact, the guy I bought it from had to ship it to me and his presets and stuff were all still saved. I think it is permanently stored on a chip or something.

  8. #138
    Super Moderator. If my typing sucks it's probably because I'm driving.... turbocad6's Avatar
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    the controller has no wireless reciever... now that you mention it, it was the alpine pxa-h510 that had the memory problem... or was it also the era-g320 alpine eq, I vthink they both did... I thought it was the rf also... then again, guess not...

  9. #139
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    Quote Originally Posted by JasonWW
    I was thinking the controller may have an IR reciever on it.

    nope - and if it had an IR reciever, it would have come with a remote for sure - alpine is good like that



    see - I don't like using the PC to control the volume - I prefer to use the knob on the Alpine display

    but that's just me

    set the volume on the PC and leave it - it's much easier to control the volume via a knob (or in your case with the steering wheel controls) rather than the computer
    Jan Bennett
    FS: VW MKIV Bezel for 8" Lilliput - 95% Finished

    Please post on the forums! Chances are, someone else has or will have the same questions as you!

  10. #140
    Raw Wave Defiler's Avatar
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    Just to throw in my two cents about the difference between the two other than the color is the fact that the 700 is slightly slower to input than the 701. But it is not a deal breaker IMO. These are the only two diferences between the two. And this was from the Alpine rep. I asked a while back when I was looking to buy one.
    Aura MR62 (F and R)
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