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Thread: MacBook used in a Digital system

  1. #1
    Join Date: Jan 2013

    Location: Birmingham

    Posts: 3,689
    I'm James.

    Default MacBook used in a Digital system

    Just wanted to ask computer folk what they would recommend when using a MacBook Pro in a digital based audio system.

    I am intending to use it hooked up directly to a DAC via USB or optical. What ripping software and file management software would you recommend on a Mac?

    My Mac has a 320G HDD but was wondering if I could attach a 1TB HDD via USB and run files of this.

    I intend to rip all CDs and only use a file based system.

    Any help or suggestions would be appreciated.

  2. #2
    Join Date: Nov 2008

    Location: Valley of the Hazels

    Posts: 8,333
    I'm AMusicFanNotAnAudiophile.

    Default

    I've been using dbPoweramp for ages, and now they have a Mac version https://www.dbpoweramp.com/perfecttunes.htm
    A HDD attached to the Mac via USB would be fine.
    Chris



    Once we've made sense of our world, we wanna go fuck up everybody else's because his or her truth doesn't match mine. But this is the problem. Truth is individual calculation. Which means because we all have different perspectives, there isn't one singular truth, is there?

  3. #3
    Join Date: Jan 2013

    Location: Birmingham

    Posts: 3,689
    I'm James.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Stratmangler View Post
    I've been using dbPoweramp for ages, and now they have a Mac version https://www.dbpoweramp.com/perfecttunes.htm
    A HDD attached to the Mac via USB would be fine.
    Would a SSD better a HDD for music files?

  4. #4
    Join Date: Dec 2014

    Location: UK, East Midlands

    Posts: 896
    I'm Mike.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jimbo View Post
    Would a SSD better a HDD for music files?
    I find both work fine for playback ... but for shifting files and albums SSD is definitely much, much faster.

    I would recommend Audirvarna Plus for playback - miles better than iTunes

    Have no problem ripping with iTunes personally - and it's free. Audirvarna then piggybacks on iTunes library

  5. #5
    Join Date: Jan 2013

    Location: Birmingham

    Posts: 3,689
    I'm James.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mikmas View Post
    I find both work fine for playback ... but for shifting files and albums SSD is definitely much, much faster.

    I would recommend Audirvarna Plus for playback - miles better than iTunes

    Have no problem ripping with iTunes personally - and it's free. Audirvarna then piggybacks on iTunes library
    Is Audirvarna a one off payment?

  6. #6
    Join Date: Dec 2014

    Location: UK, East Midlands

    Posts: 896
    I'm Mike.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jimbo View Post
    Is Audirvarna a one off payment?
    Yep - or at least it was when I got it a couple of years ago

  7. #7
    Join Date: Aug 2013

    Location: Isle of Wight, UK

    Posts: 35
    I'm David.

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    I also use dBPoweramp and Audirvana on a Mac, in my case a dedicated Mac Mini.

    I started ripping CD's with iTunes but switched to dBPoweramp as that allows me to rip as FLAC rather than ALAC. Whilst this isn't the least bit important while I'm using the Mac I wanted the ripped files to work with anything I might try later such as a PC or more likely a Raspberry Pi/Linux based system.

    I'm very impressed with dBPoweramp despite the unlikely name. It uses a database to ensure you have a bit perfect copy of the CD and draws metadata from a reasonable number of sources which you can easily edit if you need/want to. It is also very quick at file conversions if you ever need them.

    Before buying Audirvana I also tried Fidelio (which I still use on a MacBook as it has excellent mixing to reduce the stereo effect when using headphones) and HQPlayer. All three were miles better than iTunes. Of the three I slightly preferred the sound quality of HQPlayer but it potentially required more IT skills to use than Audirvana. At the time I was intending to try room correction software which was relatively easy to implement in Audirvana but much more difficult in HQPlayer, albeit several years on I still haven't tried it so in my case anyway the point is moot.

    If you use either Tidal or Quobuz they both work well, and relatively seamlessly, with Audirvana.

    David Whistance

  8. #8
    Join Date: Apr 2008

    Location: Warrington

    Posts: 2,884
    I'm Neil.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jimbo View Post
    Would a SSD better a HDD for music files?
    No, however, I do like a silent PC, so use SSDs & no fans (passively cooled processor etc.) for this reason.
    Mana Acoustics Racks / Bright Star IsoNodes Decoupling >> Custom Silent Media Server >> Halide Bridge USB (with AQVOX USB power) >> Pedja Rogic's Audial Model S DAC + Pioneer PL-71 turntable / Vista Audio phono-1 mk II / Denon PCL-5 headshell / Reson Reca >> LFD DLS >> LFD PA2M (SE) >> Royd RR3s.

  9. #9
    Join Date: Mar 2010

    Location: Sheffield

    Posts: 2,575
    I'm Simon.

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    2009 17" Macbook Pro here. It's been on 24/7 every single day since it was brand new. Never flickered, never skipped a beat. I use iTunes for importing and management and flick Audivarna+ on when I want to play DSD or high res. USB output to Mytek Brooklyn. It couldn't be any simpler, put the sleep app on it and you can use it with the screen closed- like a headless pc. The HD is getting rattle after all these years so it's time for a new one, 1TB SSD.
    Kuzma Stabi/S 12", (LP12-bastard) DC motor and optical tacho psu, Benz LP, Paradise (phonostage). MB-Pro, Brooklyn dac and psu, Bruno Putzeys balanced pre, mod86p dual mono amps, Yamaha NS1000m

  10. #10
    Join Date: Jan 2013

    Location: Birmingham

    Posts: 3,689
    I'm James.

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    Having looked at Audirvana plus, I am pretty sure this will be the digital music management system I will use initially and output it via usb to a DAC.

    Now I wonder which DAC I am going to use?

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