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Would using a lower system/iTunes volume cause the tube to be utilized more, bringing in more "tube sound" because the tube is used on the USB portion?
Basically I'd just like more info on the effects of different volume settings on the computer since it does affect the level outputted by the unit.
You'll ideally want to have the volume from your computer on maximum and then use the T1 to control the volume at your headphones.
Nothing you do with your system volume will cause the tube to be utilized more or less.
At least not in any way tangible to you or anyone else.
These tubes are being used at a very low level. Probably 6v or so. When they're used for actual sound amplification in other amplifiers, they can typically 100v or more. The way the tube is used in this DAC is extremely easy on the tube. Also because of how the tube is used in this unit, you'll never get the "full potential" of the tube being used because it's not actually amplifying the sound.
NO. You want your computer volume as high as you can get without any clipping, generally around 75%. Maxing it out will almost definitely cause distortion.
Except that that's never been the case for me through two different amps, two different sets of headphones and two sets of speakers with my computer volumes maxed.
I'm sure that's good advice though as some people will possibly experience clipping.
Either way, the volume should be raised on your computer and then the headphone volume should be controlled via the amplifier.
Not sure that is true with the audio changes that were implemented starting with Windows Vista. Everything I've seen about higher-end DACs inform the user set volume for the audio device to 100%.
Owner of Aune T1 here. Setting it at 100% system volume is the way to go unless you're using the RCA in rather than the USB in. The DAC is designed for 100% bit-accurate reproduction so long as you make sure you're outputting at 24-bit. Reducing system volume will only up your noise floor and limit your dynamic range since it has to pass through the Windows sound mixer. Also recommended is to use ASIO or WASPI to bypass the Windows mixer.
I agree, Foobar2000 + WASPI (event mode) all the way!
I'd highly recommend MusicBee as a replacement to Foobar. Same core features as Foobar2000 with an amazing interface!
Thanks for the recommendation. I'll definitely give it a try!