PWDII renderer error?


#1

So since JRiver has Media Center running well enough to enable ethernet to be used as the audio digital path, and does so well enough to play multiple albums back to back… And I am enjoying the increase in resolution this method of digital streaming accords.



BUT, I have noticed a problem.



On music tracks of 96K or higher, the playback starts ‘skipping’ ahead by a second or so (or is it catching up?). This proclivity gets worse as time goes by, as in more frequent and with larger time skips. I have brought this up on the JRivers for Mac forum and the comment in passing was it was it could be a renderer problem. This is α software so it could be ‘participating’ in this behavior at the very least.



But I thought it would be prudent to bring this up here to see if anyone else has any input or experience with this problem as well.



And yes I am using the ‘Audiophile 24bit DAC’ wizard for setup. Which is also in part why I bring it up here. Could there be problem with this particular set of operating parameters?



I have eagerly awaited this mode of streaming the music and thus far the results I have noticed are worth it. Even with the quirky behavior of Media Center at this stage of development.



Any insights offered are greatly appreciated.



JJ


#2

My first thought would be that this is a network issue, but it could indeed be a communication problem between the PWD/Bridge and J River. Beyond that I leave it to those familiar with J River.



What is your network path from J River to the PWD/Bridge? This information may help with diagnosis.



J.P.


#3

Both the DAC and Mac Pro are connected via a switch.



Only the one Mac, a cable modem, and the PWDII are on this network.



JJ


#4

10, 100 or gigabit? Static or DHCP assigned IP addresses? Okay, static address may not have much to do with it, but many of us find that the PWD/Bridge is much better with a static IP address. Manufacturer of switch and modem?



Okay, this may be fishing, as your network is very simple and should not be an issue. SHOULD not… :slight_smile:



J.P.


#5

Unfortunately, in my opinion this is a renderer problem. I’ve had the bridge for a long time now (two years maybe?) and I don’t think I have ever had completely skip free operation at all sample rates. That said, getting your network setup well and using the right bridge firmware should minimize these skips (some firmware versions may eliminate them, however I have always chosen sound quality over absolute stability) I have streamed music to the PWD from a PC, a NAS and currently a Mac Mini over different network setups. I have also used different server software and am currently using Jriver. If you have not already tried it you could see how elyric server software compares. For me it does have less skips but they are not eliminated. So in my opinion Jriver could be exacerbating the problem but it is not creating it. Hopefully Wavestream will help with these issues, though it could be a while before we see that.


#6

JJ, dig around here for a post I made a while ago explaining how to get JRMC17 working in high res over the network. I don’t recall ever experiencing skips or stuttering. If JRMC18 can be set up the same way, give it a try. I haven’t tried 18 yet - busy alpha testing Wavestream with eMM and LMS. :slight_smile:


#7

Gigabit switch and the same capability for the Mac.



The switch is the DHCP server with only 10 addresses available for all other (not turned on) devices that could access the Internet (wireless and wired) at some point.



Switch is a Netgear

Model Number: WNR3500



Modem is Arris

Model # WBM760A



While it is possible it could be a bandwidth issue the transmission rates of these data streams is low. Of course it does depend upon being continuous but given the light load of the network even that shouldn’t be an issue.



JJ



10, 100 or gigabit? Static or DHCP assigned IP addresses? Okay, static address may not have much to do with it, but many of us find that the PWD/Bridge is much better with a static IP address. Manufacturer of switch and modem?



Okay, this may be fishing, as your network is very simple and should not be an issue. SHOULD not… :slight_smile:



J.P.

#8

I tried EMM eLyric and was very dissatisfied. The degree of instability meant I couldn’t even get thru one track at times. The sound quality was great when it ran, but the functionality was so bad I just gave up and waited for JRiver.



I too have been waiting for Wavestream, but it’s clear there might be a long wait.



Thanks JJ



Unfortunately, in my opinion this is a renderer problem. I’ve had the bridge for a long time now (two years maybe?) and I don’t think I have ever had completely skip free operation at all sample rates. That said, getting your network setup well and using the right bridge firmware should minimize these skips (some firmware versions may eliminate them, however I have always chosen sound quality over absolute stability) I have streamed music to the PWD from a PC, a NAS and currently a Mac Mini over different network setups. I have also used different server software and am currently using Jriver. If you have not already tried it you could see how elyric server software compares. For me it does have less skips but they are not eliminated. So in my opinion Jriver could be exacerbating the problem but it is not creating it. Hopefully Wavestream will help with these issues, though it could be a while before we see that.




#9

I will look for it.



JRiver has become useable and while many quirks remain, I do realize it’s α s/w. But at least I can play whole albums at a time and usually not have everything come crashing down or slowly going sideways as things get more and more twisted, requiring an all to often re-start.



I have played around with the various Media Network setup options but there is always more to learn.



Thanks JJ



JJ, dig around here for a post I made a while ago explaining how to get JRMC17 working in high res over the network. I don’t recall ever experiencing skips or stuttering. If JRMC18 can be set up the same way, give it a try. I haven’t tried 18 yet - busy alpha testing Wavestream with eMM and LMS. :slight_smile:




#10

I looked but couldn’t find it. I do remember seeing it (or something similar) a ways back but I can’t locate it now.



Perhaps someone has a handy link?



Thanks JJ









JJ, dig around here for a post I made a while ago explaining how to get JRMC17 working in high res over the network. I don’t recall ever experiencing skips or stuttering. If JRMC18 can be set up the same way, give it a try. I haven’t tried 18 yet - busy alpha testing Wavestream with eMM and LMS. :slight_smile:




#11

Found the original thread on JRiver



http://yabb.jriver.com/interact/index.php?topic=71226.msg500735#msg500735



Like I said, I haven’t tried 18 yet, so these control selections may not be identical.


#12

The settings are different and some are found in different places.



I did turn off a few things, just to see if anything changes.



I’ll report back with the results.



Thanks JJ


#13

So I turned off volume leveling (in network setup) and output format (in DSP Studio) to no change for all sample rates.



If any thing its worse. Which is odd mostly because all of DSP Studio is non-functional in Media Network at this point and volume leveling and output format are DSP functions.



Hmmmmm. Curioser and curioser.



Thanks for the suggestions I was kinda hoping they would at least help if not cure the problem.



JJ


#14

So an update, of sorts.

The ‘skipping’ problem is still around but the severity and frequency have abated a bit.



On the suggestion of PS Audio - Help, I have also tried EMM just to see if it’s a ‘player’/server issue vs. a renderer issue. And thus far it looks like a renderer issue. But with all of the tweaking I’ve been doing, the severity has lessened.



And I just swapped out all my Ethernet cables for cat-7 rated cables. So the quest continues…



JJ


#15

@johnjen

Hi

The fact that it seems to settle down with time may mean your switch is giving priority to your DAC as it learns the habits.



Also the Arris modems seem to be a consistent problem for many [ DSL are even worse]. Seems like the nightly updates of cable channels and occasional firmware can create problems.

try rebooting your modem [reset button] and then play an album and see if it improves.

If so, then a robust router [ airport Extreme or Linksys] could be set up as an internal LAN and will probably solve the issues of drops and skips.

Your internal LAN can be separate or as an extension of the original.

If you happen to be with Comcast, there are plenty of complaints with this modem.

G


#16

I use a PC running XP with EMM and Fidelizer to an Airport extreme to PW DAC and have had little or no skipping with high res material for about 1.5 years. Until… I turned on file sharing to move some music off my MAC and now I have skips ahoy! I’ll turn it off when I get a chance and see if the problem goes away. I really didn’t know what all the fuss was about skips until now. ~X(


#17

Turned off file sharing and the skips are much less frequent but still occurring. I don’t know what to think. It seems to help but I can’t be sure that turning it off made the difference or not since I had no skips previously.


#18

The skips have been settling down mainly due to me changing the overall network setup, rather than the router ‘learning’ new habits. In fact software changes of both JRiver and PWD updates have had more effect than my network configuration changes.



I routinely re-boot both the router and the cable modem and thus far the Arris modem has been trouble free, more so than my previous units.



Setting up a dedicated router to feed the DAC is more or less what I already have with the existing setup, given the QoS and static IP settings I’m using now. Now if I could use the second Ethernet port on the Mac to separate the music data from the rest of the network traffic that might help. I’ll have to investigate that option.



Which Linksys routers/switches are known to be ‘robust’ and well suited for our use?



Thanks for the reply…



JJ



@johnjen

Hi

The fact that it seems to settle down with time may mean your switch is giving priority to your DAC as it learns the habits.



Also the Arris modems seem to be a consistent problem for many [ DSL are even worse]. Seems like the nightly updates of cable channels and occasional firmware can create problems.

try rebooting your modem [reset button] and then play an album and see if it improves.

If so, then a robust router [ airport Extreme or Linksys] could be set up as an internal LAN and will probably solve the issues of drops and skips.

Your internal LAN can be separate or as an extension of the original.

If you happen to be with Comcast, there are plenty of complaints with this modem.

G



#19

@johnjen

Hi

I have found that a router settles down after a few hours of playing [after a reset] as well as do “smart” switches. The built in QOS seems to learn from use habits.

I think it is a good idea that you occasionally reboot the modem too as it resets itself and your connected gadgets anew.

Any of the EA Linksys series seems to work well example EA4200. There seems to be a new one almost weekly.

Linksys also has tutorials so you can set up a separate ip range or extend the one coming from a modem/router.



Is your modem strictly a modem or does it also set LAN IPs?


#20

The modem is strictly a modem. All IP assignments, DHCP and static, are handled by the router.



I figure if I can add a switch or router on the 2nd Ethernet port and have the PWD as the only device it should significantly simplify the entire setup.



Of course this assumes that the Mac will recognize the 2nd Ethernet port as the music port, and that this subnet will function ‘properly’. I really don’t see the need for wi-fi nor a bunch of fancy capabilities, just to deliver a single stream of packets to a single device. Unless there be hidden gotchas lurking in the midst of my simple plan.



Well one snag already is finding a switch that supports IP assignments… It may have to be a router with all of the fu-fu stuff turned off.



JJ