HQPlayer Upsampling Runs on a Pi4 - Invigorate your digital audio!

Discussion in 'Computer Audiophile: Software, Configs, Tools' started by Woland, Jul 20, 2021.

  1. ohshitgorillas

    ohshitgorillas Friend

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    I'm trying to get HQPlayer working on my USBridge Sig... but no luck. I've tried flashing with Rufus and the official Raspberry Pi Imager, I've tried two different SD cards, re-re-re-re-flashing, nothing seems to work. The ACT LED lights up for a second and then goes dark, and the thing never comes online.

    I suspect I'm using the wrong overlay, but I'm not sure which would be most appropriate for the USBridge.

    As an alternative, I'm also trying to set up hqpalyerd on my overpowered headless Linux media server but having a hard time getting it connected. I want to use the HQPlayer control app to stream media from the media server to the moode-based USBridge and Pi2AES (but not at the same time) but I'm not sure how to connect the app to the daemon or which ports are being used. Not sure if this is "NAA" mode. The installation "guide" references a readme file but I can't find the f'ing thing for the life of me.

    Edit: getting it figured out. got hqplayerd running and communicating, and also remembered that the USBridge is based on the Pi3+, not the Pi4, so HQPlayer won't work.

    EDIT: for anyone trying to get HQPlayer NAA working on a USBridge, the trick is to install the version of RoPieee specifically for the USBridge which allows it to act as an NAA endpoint.
     
    Last edited: Jan 6, 2024
  2. ohshitgorillas

    ohshitgorillas Friend

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    Can anyone tell me whether HQPlayer on the Pi4 will run 16x oversampling (705.6/768)? Or will it only get up to 8x?
     
  3. Justin S

    Justin S Friend

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    Yes. It will do 16x.
     
  4. ohshitgorillas

    ohshitgorillas Friend

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    just documenting my HQPlayer journey:

    General: I started out running HQPlayer OS on my Pi4 as described in this thread, however, I eventually migrated to hqplayerd on my overpowered Linux media server (i5-10600KF, GTX 1660 Ti) because I had problems with drop-outs and the first second of each track repeating using BubbleUPnP and the Pi4. BubbleUPnP does better now that the media server is hosting HQPlayer, but still doesn't integrate well as I still get dropouts and the first second repeating from streaming sources like Tidal and Qobuz (but not local files).

    The HQPDcontrol app for phones and tablets is... okay. It works, but the workflow is kind of confusing and there's no support for streaming. I prefer BubbleUPnP, but again, that doesn't integrate well. I'm told that mConnect does a better job and will be testing that out over the weekend.

    I was disappointed to learn that hqplayerd is incompatible with a firewall, as I used to run one on my media server out of an abundance of caution. When asked what range of ports hqplayerd uses dynamically, Jussi responded with ">1024".

    Streaming Services: I switched from Tidal to Qobuz, primarily for HQPlayer integration, but it doesn't hurt that Qobuz offers hi-res streaming for $1/mo more than Tidal's redbook-only plan. The "integration" between Qobuz and HQPlayer is a bit disappointing as it lacks a search feature and only allows you to view favorites and new releases. To listen to something new right now, I have to go the Qobuz website, add something to my favorites, then reload the favorites window in HQPlayer Client. I also don't care for the HQPlayer Client app through which Qobuz is integrated, as for some reason it's optimized for touch screen interfaces (but not available for Android or iOS...). Again, I'm hoping that mConnect can offer a smoother experience. I primarily use my private collection as a source anyway.

    Again, no Qobuz integration with the HQPDcontrol app through Android.

    EDIT: apparently, I'm the dumbass and it is possible to search Qobuz with the HQPlayer Client.

    Settings: I usually use the sinc-M or closed-form-M filter, although I've had instances where the bass on closed-form-M was a bit claustrophobic and fatiguing. The closed form filter also isn't apodizing and a lot of my music triggers the apodizing counter so I usually leave it on sinc-M. I've had a few instances of sibilance that were resolved by switching to a longer filter, but sinc-M works for the vast majority of my music. To my ears, sinc-M is faster and more detailed than most. I am far from having tried all of the filters, though this kind of tweaking is more of a chore than fun for me. As for dithering, I am still going back and forth between NS9, TPDF, and Gauss1 but so far I think Gauss1 is my favorite.

    I usually use a Pi2AES streamer into a Gustard R26 via AES, but I decided to try out the LAN streamer and oversampling to 705.6/768 kHz. The Pi2AES is still a superior source even when limited to 192 kHz. The LAN streamer to me sounds more smoothed over, where the Pi2AES has better texture/fine detail retrieval.

    Summary: Overall, HQPlayer is a worthwhile investment if you want to squeeze the most out of your digital audio, however, the learning curve is steep, the number of options can be overwhelming, and it can be a bit rough around the edges. The HQPDcontrol app and HQPlayer Client are okay with some confusing design decisions, but they are functional. The 'guides' only briefly describe what each feature of the software does and lacks any sort of real tutorial/walkthrough. Once you get the hang of it, it is straightforwardish, but getting there takes time.

    Support is decent but slow, although time zone differences play a role here.

    For $300, one expects polished software, which HQPlayer is distinctly not. Based on what's under the hood, it is totally worth its price tag for me, but I do wish that Jussi would focus more on UX and guides that describe a workflow instead of just rote description of features.
     
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    Last edited: Jan 7, 2024
  5. Ksaurav402

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    Although I use Roon with HQPlayer but I think we can search albums in Qobuz from HQPlayer client running on MBP.
     
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  6. ohshitgorillas

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    Just when I think I've got the hang of this, I find something that I'm doing wrong...

    Apparently, the DAC bits setting in the output section (ALSA or Network Audio backend) should match the DAC's real analog bit depth, so everyone using Schiit DACs should check the real bit depth and ensure that it's set correctly (i.e. 16 for Bifrost, iirc 21? for Yggdrasil).

    EDIT; NS9 dither sounds a lot better now that I've correctly set the bits for my DAC. For the Gustard R26, the correct setting is 15.
     
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2024
  7. dericchan1

    dericchan1 Acquaintance

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    Confirming —4G version rpi5 with bookworm can run upsampling pcm1536 to my Holo Cyan 2 (no overclocking required, so chord mscaler owner can replace that with a $85 rpi5) and dsd256 (limited to ultra light settings with overclocking) and qobuz streaming as well!!!

    Streamed Qobuz for 10 hours through the night with pcm1536, not a single hiccup, cpu temp never passed 60c with only passive cooling, no OC!!!
    [​IMG]
     
  8. Greg121986

    Greg121986 Almost "Made"

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    I've been using HQPlayer for about two months. What an absolutely outstanding enhancement to both my Holo Spring 3 KTE and Eversolo DAC-Z8. But the setup and user experience is horrid. I'm using Roon as well. Now that Harmon has bought Roon they need to go ahead and acquire HQPlayer so it can be fully integrated into Roon Ux. Changing filters and "experimenting" with HQPlayer settings is the worst. The best settings I have found so far are Sinc-Mx & ASDM7EC-Super 512 Fs for my Holo Spring 3. I use 768PCM to the Eversolo because it seems their DSD implementation is broken.

    What settings are being used on the RPI? What kind of latency do you see for starting/stopping a track? I am running a 7950X and RTX 3090 and it still seems to be suboptimal. Starting/Stopping a track takes at least 5 seconds. I use about 5-10% of the CPU and anywhere from 15-50% of the GPU with CUDA offload.

    It really cannot be overstated how much of an insane improvement HQPlayer upsampling brings, as well as the variation you can experience with each filter change. If you have computing hardware lying around (even an RPI it seems) it is 1000% worth screwing around with. But prepare to be sad with the usability.
     
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  9. dericchan1

    dericchan1 Acquaintance

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    I have been using Hqplayer since version 4 and now onto version 5. Desktop version
    In my main set up, I use a 13600k with 3080TI doing DSD512 Super 512fs for my IFI Pro IDSD DAC, zero delays in starting/stopping a track

    I was using the client app for Qobuz streaming for almost 7 months and that was absolutely rock solid - zero hiccup and I like the fact that I can change any filters, modulations, matrix pipeline settings on the fly (well with .5 second delay). Actually I used my iphone Qobuz app to search for tracks/albums/artists, add them to favorites and it will show up immediately in HQPlayer Client app (I seldom use the Client app for searching). I only VNC into the client app and pick the tracks/albums I added and click "play". But the Client app is actually getting better and better - with the latest version, you can get Qobuz to continue playing similar stuff to what you selected, also, there is a sub dropdown menu to further filter new release albums by genre so its really not bad.

    With the recently added feature with the RPI as a NAA input device, my set up is as follows:

    Jplay IOS as UPNP control point for Qobuz and local library streaming -> Mini PC with intel N100 running Jriver as media server and renderer USB C -> RPI4 as a NAA input device -> USB to HQplayer desktop PC -> SFP out to Cisco network switch -> SFP out to Fitlet 3 -> USB out to intona -> IFI Pro IDSD DAC.

    The same HQPlayer desktop PC actually also stream to my bedroom system NAA (RPI4) to Holo Cyan 2; and my home office system NAA (RPI4) to Chord Mojo 2. They all have their own profile/settings/convolution and Hqplayer is again amazing, as you simply import the right settings for the Cyan 2 and select NAA to the Cyan 2...

    Even with Jplay IOS for streaming, I still VNC with my iphone to client app to tinker with filter settings on the fly all the time but that's just me!!!

    I am simply experimenting with RPI5 for the fun of it to see how capable they are but it is not required in my system.
     
    Last edited: Jan 25, 2024
  10. dericchan1

    dericchan1 Acquaintance

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    Hqplayer is simply amazing. I can’t even imagine how I am going to set up my current system without hqplayer…

    thanks to hqplayer coming up with new features or filters or modulators every 2-3 weeks otherwise I might got bored easily

    Keeping up with the excitement, I was only playing with rpi4 input NAA and jplay just a month ago, now I am playing with rpi5 and bookworm and overclocking...

    There's now new qobuz feature within the client app too.

    Previously I have spent a good few months comparing DSD 256 vs 512 with tubes and without. Then was playing around with the Mola Mola half band filters and sinc long for classical... I can't imagine how music listening sessions would be like if I just bought a dac and a streamer and call it a day…

    In my 6 year old son's room I have a Dayton audio tube integrated amp with a crappy built-in dac only support up to 16/48 USB, I have a RPI5 with Hqplayer 4 there downsampling Qobuz to PCM 16/48 and that works perfectly and sound pretty decent as well!!!

    Hqplayer simply improves any of my dacs from a crappy PCM 16/48 dac all the way up to my main dac!!!
     
    Last edited: Jan 25, 2024

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