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USB sound output to JBL MS-8 DSP which is the better option?

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  • USB sound output to JBL MS-8 DSP which is the better option?

    The JBL MS-8 DSP accepts high level speaker inputs and standard RCA inputs that can handle a balanced signal.
    I'm looking at 2 options:

    1 - USB sound card (Creative Labs or other?) for standard RCA hookups

    2 - USB playback adapter from peavy that converts audio from the PC to a balanced signal http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/produc...SB_Direct.html

    I'm thinking the Peavey unit is the better choice, rather than a full-blown USB sound card?

    Any other options I should consider?

    I plan to hook it up through an Aux input on the MS-8 for bench testing, but I imagine the headphone out of the computer is not going to give me the best results.

    Thanks.

  • #2
    Looks like it would work, So the other end of the cable that connects to the box is a pair of RCA's? I wonder what the pre-out voltage is on it?


    Edit: I forgot you said you are using a DSP, that should look after your pre-out voltages before your amp(s)
    My 2007 Ford F350 Work Log located HERE

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    • #3
      Originally posted by PhilG View Post
      Looks like it would work, So the other end of the cable that connects to the box is a pair of RCA's? I wonder what the pre-out voltage is on it?


      Edit: I forgot you said you are using a DSP, that should look after your pre-out voltages before your amp(s)
      No idea, but others have said the levels adjust with the computer volume control.

      Just now thinking I might need to do the USB sound card, because I am getting the HD radio. I'll need a way to input that into the computer, rather than the microphone jack.

      Darn.... more decisions

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      • #4
        I have had excellent sound using a USB DAC connected to my JBL MS-8.

        It gives 2v RMS as its line out voltage. Mine is the ODAC by nwavguy, but I bought another with the same ESS DAC from ebay for $65 to try out.



        Sent from my SCH-I535 using Tapatalk 2

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        • #5
          Originally posted by rray View Post
          I have had excellent sound using a USB DAC connected to my JBL MS-8.

          It gives 2v RMS as its line out voltage. Mine is the ODAC by nwavguy, but I bought another with the same ESS DAC from ebay for $65 to try out.



          Sent from my SCH-I535 using Tapatalk 2
          Oh geez, now you went over my head. Is the ODAC by nwavguy a similar device to the peavey USB-P?

          If my sound card supports line-in through the microphone port, I'm wondering if the quality would be good for the HD radio? The input method for the HD radio to the PC is really the stumbling block for either using a full-blown sound card, or a music player type of thing.

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          • #6
            Looking more into this, my soundcard can capture audio through the mic jack as an external audio device. It might work just fine like that. Guess there's only one way to find out

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            • #7
              The Peavy device is a USB DAC too, but it's more geared for ground loop isolation, so may actually be better for carputer use than the ODAC. The ODAC is geared for low cost audiophile transparancy (low noise and accurate sound reproduction) The Peavy is still real good!

              These devices are a cleaner line out only sound card that intercept the audio while it is still digital data, and do not add an analog preamp stage, so are going to provide a much more accurate clean signal to your MS-8 than a sound card that converts the signal to analog and then adds its own effects.
              You don't want any effects like bass boost, eq, loudness, stereo wide, etc. going to the MS-8 because it wants to strip everything out down to pure Left and Right flat stereo response before it's DSP builds it's own soundstage.

              If you are gong to use a DSP, then always try to feed it as clean and unmodified sound as possible,
              which means either use an audiophile DAC or set all your soundcard effects off, balance and fader to middle, eq to flat, etc. Then the DSP will really impress your ears.

              So, how do I use my HD Radio? I just plug the HDRadio line out to the moterboard's Mic In, and set the Recording Devices\External Mic\Properties\Listen Tab\ to checkbox "Listen" and on the Levels tab, adjust the level slider till the HD radio volume is the same as an average mp3 volume is while being played back. That matched the HD Radio volume with all other media played through the DAC.

              The ODAC Specs:
              Frequency Response: +/- 0.1 dB (10 hz – 19 Khz 24/44)
              THD+N 100 hz 0 dBFS: 0.0029%
              THD+N 20 hz –1 dBFS: 0.003%
              THD+N 10 Khz –1 dBFS: 0.003%
              IMD CCIF 19/20 Khz –3 dBFS: 0.0011%
              IMD SMPTE –1 dBFS: 0.0004% A
              Noise A-Weighted dBu 24/44: --102.8 dBu
              Dynamic Range: > 110 dB A-Weighted
              Linearity Error -90 dBFS 24/44: 0.0 dB
              Crosstalk 0 dBFS Line Out 100K: --93.5 dB
              USB Jitter 11025 hz J-test 24/44: Excellent
              Maximum Output Line Out 100K: 2.0 Vrms
              Distortion: < 0.005%

              The Peavy USB-P Specs:
              Frequency Response:
              20 Hz to 20 kHz +- 1 dB
              THD + Noise: < .015% @ 1 kHz, -9 dBu full scale output into 10k Ohm
              Hum and Noise: < 89 dB below full scale output

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              • #8
                Excellent news! Yes, seeing those specs, I can see the difference. I doubt I'll notice the difference in quality, but I think the XLR on the peavey might be the best bet to secure a no

                Good to hear you are using mic-in as a line-in. I found that option in windows, it should sound just fine configured that way, I'd think!

                Looks like I'll be going with the peavey unit after all.

                Thanks again-

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                • #9
                  By the way, I had an Android based car stereo (Adayo AN6B01) hooked up to my MS-8 for a year, and thought it sounded OK but it was not very clean at all. I bought all top of the line Rockford Fosgate stuff, and although loud, it was ringy and unimpressive.

                  I knew nothing about audio, so started reading up and found out about DAC's, so I had to build a carputer just to see for myself. When I first tested the sound I $#!T my pants! My car sounds so much better than any home stereo I have ever owned. That MS-8 fed by a DAC and time aligned, really knocks my socks off!

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by rray View Post
                    By the way, I had an Android based car stereo (Adayo AN6B01) hooked up to my MS-8 for a year, and thought it sounded OK but it was not very clean at all. I bought all top of the line Rockford Fosgate stuff, and although loud, it was ringy and unimpressive.

                    I knew nothing about audio, so started reading up and found out about DAC's, so I had to build a carputer just to see for myself. When I first tested the sound I ***** my pants! My car sounds so much better than any home stereo I have ever owned. That MS-8 fed by a DAC and time aligned, really knocks my socks off!
                    Awesome!! My MS-8 is currently connected to my factory BMW 540i head unit, along with JBL MS-62c components and 2x kicker 10" subs. The sound is better than anything I've personally owned, but I can hear a little bit of distortion on occasion, I'm guessing it's from the BMW head unit. I'm banking on the PC wiping the floor with the head unit in terms of quality!!!

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                    • #11
                      Well, I think I have all the pieces in line.

                      Solar bluetooth windshield mountable car handsfree for use as a PC bluetooth microphone

                      Peavey USB-P for hopefully clean audio output

                      Directed HD kit with USB-cable

                      GPS unit for finding my way to work on my 1/2 hour daily commute

                      Still not sure on a front end for everything, might just do some custom VB.net scripting and use the windows desktop.

                      Would like to get steering wheel buttons working for volume, track change, HD radio preset change, and the phone button to answer and disconnect calls through the PC. We'll see. Probably take a while to get this all working in harmony.

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                      • #12
                        I tried a couple front ends and decided on Driveline because it has all the features you listed above, pretty much the same as what I need. It's also only got a limited following so far, but Clockwork, the developer is willing to work with people to add features. I bought one of those Joycon EXR USB steering wheel interface boards and wanted to get it to work with Driveline, and a couple posts later Clockwork had a new version of Driveline out that lets me toggle between HD Radio and Media sources, as well as tune up and down stations, or next song and previous song from my steering wheel controls.

                        What's real cool is you do not have to install it, just run it from the executable or shortcut, or just have it auto start at boot. that makes Driveline great to play with without worrying about corrupting your windows load with fluff.

                        I just made my first skin for Driveline, to customize it for my car, which is fairly easy to do with XML in notepad++. I would recommend trying it out and seeing if it works for you before installing something more invasive.

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                        • #13
                          I was going to make the same suggestion. I saw his requirements were very similar to your build rray. SNO

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by rray View Post
                            I have had excellent sound using a USB DAC connected to my JBL MS-8.
                            Did you ever use just a 3.5mm to RCA for the Aux input on your MS8? If so, how does it compare to the USB DAC? Reason I ask is that I am currently running an MS8, and plan to replace my head unit with a Nexus 7. I had planned on using the 3.5mm from the Nexus direct to the MS8, but am wondering if I should instead just use a USB DAC. For one thing it means I have to cut a little less of my dash away as I only have to fit 1 cable instead of 2.
                            Last edited by naiku; 02-19-2013, 04:59 PM.

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                            • #15
                              When I had the Android unit hooked to my MS-8, I connected the ODAC USB DAC to the aux input on the MS-8, and plugged in my first Galaxy S3 phone, because it is supposed to support the ODAC, but it immediately fried my phone, so I still don't know if my aux input works.

                              Sent from my SCH-I535 using Tapatalk 2

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