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new to online streaming

172.2.113.57

Posted on March 18, 2017 at 10:18:39
Tadlo
Audiophile

Posts: 1780
Location: midwest
Joined: March 8, 2003
I recently got Spotify Premium. My main way of using it is to play music from my Iphone 6 and send it to a $20 Amazon blue tooth receiver connected to one of the inputs on my Rotel integrated amp. I also have a tuner and CD player connected to the same system and have compared some CDs played on the CD player with the same music coming from Spotify, so I know what the sound quality difference is. The Iphone sounds no worse than my computer running the spotify and it is a lot more convenient. But I am wondering if I am needlessly compromising sound quality by using the Iphone as the source. And what about the cheapo blue tooth receiver? Advice appreciated.

 

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It's not your iPhone. It's several other factors...., posted on March 18, 2017 at 11:38:57
AbeCollins
Audiophile

Posts: 28409
Location: USA
Joined: June 22, 2001
Contributor
  Since:
February 2, 2002
"But I am wondering if I am needlessly compromising sound quality by using the Iphone as the source. "

It's not so much the iPhone as it is the lower resolution of the streaming service combined with the lower resolution of bluetooth. Try a direct connection from the iPhone to your amp, using a 3.5mm to RCA adapter cable. Ditch the bluetooth. That will help, but Spotify is still relatively "low-res" compared to a CD.

Additionally, if you ever want to experiment with higher resolution from the iPhone, try ripping CDs as AIFF or ALAC (Apple Lossless) then sync it to your iPhone with iTunes. Then use an outboard DAC like the Audioquest Dragonfly series from your Lightning connector using a Lightning to USB adapter cable.

I run my iPhone in the car with AIFF and ALAC files on it with the iPhone 'direct connected' to the car's DAC via Lightning to USB. This completely eliminates the iPhone's internal DAC and it's internal analog stage and audio quality is excellent.

In the photos below the iPhone is direct connected to the car's internal DAC, the cellphone amplifier & external antenna. The adapter also holds the iPhone securely in place. But even w/o the adapter you can see a USB port nearby. That port will do the same thing (except the iPhone will not be connected to the cellular RF amp and external antenna). The main point is to ditch bluetooth. A direct analog connection via 3.5mm to RCA adapter is better. A direct digital connection to an outboard DAC is best. In this case the outboard DAC is part of the car's audio system.
iPhone under the armrest



 

RE: It's not your iPhone. It's several other factors...., posted on March 19, 2017 at 18:49:30
Tadlo
Audiophile

Posts: 1780
Location: midwest
Joined: March 8, 2003
Thanks. I already have a Dragonfly. I never thought of using it with the Iphone.

 

RE: It's not your iPhone. It's several other factors...., posted on March 20, 2017 at 07:36:57
AbeCollins
Audiophile

Posts: 28409
Location: USA
Joined: June 22, 2001
Contributor
  Since:
February 2, 2002

The newer Dragonflys require less power than the originals and should work directly on your iPhone via the USB-to-Lightning adapter cable.



 

RE: It's not your iPhone. It's several other factors...., posted on March 21, 2017 at 16:44:18
Jim Hodgson
Audiophile

Posts: 376
Location: New York City
Joined: March 9, 2006
Tidal HiFi streaming from iPhone to DragonFly Red (via the original Apple Lightning to USB Camera Adapter) pretty much changed my life ... or at least changed how I view this whole streaming thing (to which I am also very new).

I started with this configuration as a very convenient portable (headphone) system solution. Then it migrated to my home headphone system. And now something like this is making the leap to my main system. Those little DragonFlies are pretty formidable beasts. And I think that someone could be quite happy streaming lossless from a mobile phone to one of them, connecting to an integrated amplifier like yours via the cable that AbeCollins showed us.

More specifically, and as AbeCollins said, the newer Red and Black versions of DragonFly work directly with iPhone. Do you have one of these -- or an older generation (original or version 1.2)? If the latter, you MAY get it to work with your iPhone with a powered USB hub or the newer Apple Lightning to USB 3 Camera Adapter (link below) -- which allows for simultaneous phone charging with a connected USB device. (It also clears up some sonic issues that were present with the older adapter.) This is just an informed guess -- but possibly something to try if your DragonFly predates Red and Black.

 

why nog use Spotify Iphone app ass remote ?RE: new to online streaming, posted on March 22, 2017 at 02:48:53
hfavandepas
Audiophile

Posts: 578
Location: Rotterdam, The Netherlands.
Joined: February 9, 2009
Hi Tadlo,

There are many options for you.
Check all the options for best sound quality

I haven't red this suggestion/option yet:

I use the Spotify app on my phone as a remote for the Spotify program on my computer.
No configuration needed.
1. start Spotify on your computer (+ Dragonfly -> audio setup)
2. Start Spotify on your phone with WiFi enabled so it can 'see' Spotify running on your computer through your WiFi <-> LAN.
3. The Spotify app on your phone will automatically 'see' Spotify running on your computer and will automatically offer too continue playing Spotify on your computer. From that moment on, your Spotify phone app will act as a remote via WiFi.

In my setup it looks like this:
Spotify app on phone -> Wifi -> (wired) LAN -> computer with Spotify -> Merging Hapi

In your situation it will probably look like this:
Spotify app on phone -> Wifi -> (wired) LAN -> computer with Spotify -> Audioquest Dragonfly -> audio setup.

Mark


NetgearGS108E -> Belden ISTP Cat7 1885ENH + Telegartner plugs -> Mac mini (SSD, 2 NICs, Audirvana, ARC2 Correction -> Belden Cat7/Telegartner -> Merging Hapi and/or Supra USB 2 -> Crane Song Solaris-> XLR Vovox SD -> PMC TwoTwo8

 

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