6 posts / 0 new
Last post
the_goat's picture
Offline
Last seen: 9 months 2 weeks ago
Joined: 22/11/2009 - 22:58
Posts: 13
Streaming spotify to airplay receiver sound quality help!

I am currently streaming spotify to my pioneer receiver via the built in airplay from my ipad. I have the avcontrol app and in the status section of the app when listening to spotify it says the audio input signal to the receiver is PCM at 44.1khz frequency.. Can this be improved and does it mean the iPads DAC is adjusting the sound?

Thanks

Leeps's picture
Offline
Last seen: 1 day 4 hours ago
Joined: 10/12/2012 - 18:43
Posts: 296
RE: Streaming spotify to airplay receiver sound quality help!

I think Airplay is limited to 16bit/48khz/1440kbps CD quality, although Spotify streams at a maximum of 320kbps anyway, so there shouldn't be a significant loss of quality.

i'm guessing you've already done this, but just make sure that you've set the sound quality on Spotify to 'extreme' (320kbps) in Settings.

Personally I'm quite happy with the results. I find that the actual sound quality of the master of the particular album I'm listening to has the greatest influence on sound quality. Having said that I use Spotify for browsing new music, learning about new artists and having playlists or radio running in the background. For critical 'proper' listening I still happily purchase the CD.

I've done back to back tests on some of my most treasured music, and while I would admit that the difference is smaller than I expected (Spotify & Airplay vs CD), the Spotify source can sound a bit 'coarse' and less well-resolved compared with CD (although I should mention that I use the CD's DAC with analogue RCA input into the Pioneer receiver rather than a digital connection, so the difference could simply be put down to the contrast of two different DACs).

Have you tried the direct connection with the supplied lead? I purchased a lightning adaptor to plug in my newish iPad, but couldn't get it to play sound. Some track information made its way onto the receiver, but that's all, so I'm stuck with Airplay anyway. I did swap the lightning connector for a headphone socket to RCA phono lead, but haven't tried that yet. I can't imagine that the ipad 's internal DAC would be any better than the Pioneer's.

Something else you could try is to use the Extended Stereo setting on the receiver, then on the AV control app, set the balance to about a third of the way towards the front speakers. For my set-up this sounds fantastic.

if you come up with anything that works well, please do let me know. I've been thinking as the direct connection doesn't work on the receiver, I could always get an ipad dock once somebody brings one out that's designed for the lightning connection.  Or I could save my pennies & upgrade to the Pioneer LX77!!...

the_goat's picture
Offline
Last seen: 9 months 2 weeks ago
Joined: 22/11/2009 - 22:58
Posts: 13
RE: Streaming spotify to airplay receiver sound quality help!

I think that if I use the provided lead to attach the ipad to the receiver, then the dac inside the ipad becomes involved with the signal being sent to the receiver. When the signal is sent from ipad to receiver via airplay then the ipad dac, I believe, is bypassed!

So the inbuilt dac on the receiver is doing the processing for our systems. Someone correct me if I'm wrong because i'm a novice. I read on another website that the spotify signal is not good enough for a more premium dac to make a difference.

i recently also followed some steps online to improve the mcacc setup. This made a massive difference to my sound from all sources especially listening to music in extended stereo.

i used a microphone stand for the included mic, then went through calibration again but using 'all adj' for the equaliser. I will attach a link with a guide on how to do all this, let me know what you think of it? And if you think I have any mistakes... Thanks

http://www.avsforum.com/t/1112470/official-pioneer-mcacc-thread

MajorFubar's picture
Offline
Last seen: 56 min 14 sec ago
Joined: 03/03/2010 - 00:01
Posts: 3427
RE: Streaming spotify to airplay receiver sound quality help!

the_goat wrote:
Someone correct me if I'm wrong because i'm a novice. I read on another website that the spotify signal is not good enough for a more premium dac to make a difference.

Yep that's just bitrate snobbery Smile  If you believe that different DACs can change the sound a lot, then it'll be a while before Spotify's bitrate becomes a major limiting factor. But I'm not a major believer anyway. I've found the difference between quality DACs to be quite small, nowhere near the difference from changing something in an analogue system like the turntable or cartridge or cassette deck, or changing the speakers. I use a £300 DAC because it was effectively purchased for me, but if I'm being honest, I'm not really sure I'd consistently pass a blind test between my external DAC and the standard one built into my Mac Mini. That said, the DAC in my old Toshiba P350 laptop was dire, so it certainly can vary.

iMark's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 months 2 weeks ago
Joined: 16/05/2008 - 12:21
Posts: 316
RE: Streaming spotify to airplay receiver sound quality help!

That sounds like exactly the right bitrate. Airplay streams at Apple Lossless (CD quality), Spotify at 320 kbps. I hear absolutely no difference between AirPlay streaming via the Airport Express to the DAC or when I connect one of my Macs directly to the DAC with an optical cable. In both cases the DAC show 16/44.1, which is CD quality. The upsampling DAC makes Spotify sound a bith smoother than why I plug in a Mac directly to the amp.

fernmac's picture
Offline
Last seen: 7 months 1 week ago
Joined: 14/12/2013 - 11:21
Posts: 1
RE: Streaming spotify to airplay receiver sound quality help!

Hi, can you tell me how you are streaming spotify to your pioneer receiver? I owne a LX56 and i do not see how to do that...

Thank you for any answer, if you could mail me to fernmac@hotmail.com, even better.

Thanks a lot

Log in or register to post comments