Why does Audirvana Studio sound so much better than JRiver Media Center?

I deliberately asked it this way to invoke responses from others who disagree. I have always been a loyal JRiver user. I think it has a better look and feel and I like that it encourages active user involvement. But I stopped using it at Release 28 because the sound quality of Studio is far superior to me. That’s a strong statement, but to me it was like upgrading to a better dac. I am not happy with Studio’s quirks and bugs, although it’s getting better. I wish it was as nice to use as JRiver.

Putting those amenities aside, I am talking only about sound quality when playing the same files.

But does anyone have an explanation of how and why a music player can sound so much better than another when both stream in hi-rez?

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Are you using a PS Audio DAC? PS Audio provides files that will light a lamp on the DAC to show it is receiving their file as bit perfect.

BTW, I use Foobar 2000 (free) to play my very large library from my network attached storage. I have no desire to change.

Bruce in Philly

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All I’ve ever used is jriver. Is there a consensus that audirvana sounds better ?

I’m using Audirvana Origin, which has the same sound quality as Studio but fewer features. I had been using Audirvana 3.5, and then I downloaded a trial version of Origin to compare sound quality. I was shocked at how much better Origin sounded than 3.5 when playing back hi res files stored on my SSD. What was left to improve in 3.5? I don’t know, but my ears clearly preferred Origin.

My DAC is a Marantz SACD 30n. Like the other recent Marantz SACD players, it used the “Marantz Musical Mastering” system to upsample everything to DSD 256.

I paid for a year of Audirvana Studio. It sounds nice but its a complete pain in the bottom to deal with. I almost prefer poorer sound than having to use it . Bah.

It looks like Audirvana uses something like Fidelizer to optimize music playback from a computer? If I’m reading that correctly then a better comparison would be to JRiver w/ Fidelizer.

That’s exactly what I have.

BTW, yes I am a Foobar evangelist (it is free). If anyone is interested in using Foobar with Windows, I can provide to you my configuration files to get you up and running in no time. Just PM me.

Sorry, I don’t mean to hijack this thread, but I do want to post that there are other options for a player.

It is fully bit-perfect, but you can install digital equalizer plug-ins if you like.

The challenge with Foobar is that it is a geek’s tool and requires some configuration to look good, and for that it helps to have some computer savvy. The good is that you can make it look and handle anyway you like. Further, it has a zillion plugins to play all kinds of crazy files and has file utilities. I have it configured with a dropdown to select output drivers with a click, so I can select output between my PS Audio DAC, and my Woo Audio headphone DAC/Amp. It also has a sliding buffer size tool to help with any juttering you may have using an older, slower computer. The Geek Illuminati notes that it is very lite on computer resources. And on and on and on.

Again, PM me if you are interested.

Bruce in Philly