Which configuration is recommended to get the best sound quality


I would like to make a configuration to get the best sound quality with AS, I am looking for something equivalent to Roon Nucleus

What would you recommend ?


More information is needed:

  • Do you use AS on a Windows or Mac?
  • What system do you have (Kind of DAC, amplifier or maybe a Home Theater System?).
  • Do you want to play via USB or UPnP?
  • Do you like to play bit-perfect or do you like upsampling?
  • What are the settings you like on Roon Nucleus? Do you use upsampling there or not?

The sound quality of Audirvana is (according to reviewers) equal or better than Roon. It also depends how your settings are in Roon Nucleus vs Audirvana.

In the end it boils down to taste. Your ears and your brain decide what sounds best for you.

I forget to indicate I use an external DAC wired with usb.

Mac or Windows I don’t care at home I have both so I know the two OS.

Sometimes I use upsampling, when I feel sound better.

I am looking for to get stream player dedicated to music.

In that case, the only thing I can advise is to just try. In all cases the AS sound quality equals Roon (or is maybe even better). Just try the settings and decide what you like most.

I asked about Windows or Mac because there are different settings in AS for Mac and Windows. In Windows you can use ASIO, WASAPI and Kernel streaming. On the MAC it is different.
Some people claim they can here the differences, others say they can not.

Basically every setting you use in AS will sound good (at least as good as Roon). Just try it and see for yourself. There is no exact science for taste. Recommending a ‘best setting’ is impossible. Go with what you like most.

Which Mac do you have and which MacOS is it running? Which computer is now connected to your DAC? And what DAC are you using in this scenario?

There are fundamental electronic and electro-mechanical good practices that must be applied now and in any potential system configuration for best sound-quality… and then this becomes a subjective personal assessment, once you have the basics nailed-down…
:notes: :eye: :headphones: :eye: :notes:


You need to qualify this statement… Are you talking about perfect bit-for-bit playback of the native format signal or a perfect bit-for-bit playback of the up-sampled/modulated signal? Because both are possible… There are other factors that affect the bit-stream in any system configuration… Just the difference in “Integer Mode” will impact the sound-quality…
:notes: :eye: :headphones: :eye: :notes:

I have an IMAC with Bigsur but I want to replace it may be by a Mac Mini or a Mac Studio. On windows I use a laptop. But sometimes with Kernel streaming if I don’t use upsampling I get an issue, I have a problem with the reading speed which is accelerated. I was never be able to use ASIO so I use WASAPI but I am not sure this is the best…

For the DAC I use DMP-Z1 of Sony DMP-Z1 Digital Music Player Signature Series | Sony United Kingdom

Stay on the Apple/MacOs platforms…

What exactly is your goal and intended listening scenario? Do you run the DMP-Z1 on battery?
:notes: :eye: :headphones: :eye: :notes:

I do not need to qualify anything. I am talking in very general broad terms to a person who asks what the best settings are. Please keep in mind the target audience and the context of the question this answer is in.
If a person asks me what the best car is to drive in I don’t start to explain in the smallest details how the engine technically works. This only brings confusion and does not focus on the real question.



Yes… but the term “bit-perfect” has multiple connotations as you present it… also, you are assuming that folks understand what you mean in the use of the term as juxtaposed to ‘up-sampling’
:notes: :eye: :headphones: :eye: :notes:

As I said. You are side tracking. Try to focus on the original question of the OP. No need to confuscate this thread with trivial details not important to the question at hand.

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It is pertinent to to the question about “best sound-quality” in any potential system configuration… understanding an exact implication as you posed the question, is relevant…
:notes: :eye: :headphones: :eye: :notes:

Currently I use DMP-Z1 on battery but I have the goal to build a good lpsu to preserve battery.

I heard that a good lpsu increases sound quality

I know it’s subjective but I’m looking for good advice on how to get something well thought out and consistent with my range of materials. People’s experience saves time and money

Just use an Apple/MacOS platform, run it on the battery and connect the DMP-Z1 with a good short USB-C cable and leave it alone… No need for an another power-supply, just keep it charging when not in use…
:notes: :eye: :headphones: :eye: :notes:

Mac Mini is ok or it’s better to use a better Apple/MacOS platform ?

What do you mean a good USB-C cable, have you a brand to share ?

I have one of these, and also an B>A:

However, as I don’t have bat-like hearing I wouldn’t begin to argue that they sound any better than a bog-standard £5 Amazon jobby :wink: :rofl:


A MacMini is fine as long as you have enough RAM installed (at least 16GB)… If you plan to run it headless, make sure you use this NewerTech device or something like it, so to keep the GPU functioning in support of the system operation:

Mac and PC computers can pack phenomenal power into a compact form factor, but when they’re operated without a display attached, the GPU isn’t activated — meaning it’s not pulling its weight. So when you access your Mac or PC remotely, the CPU does all the work in rendering the user interface. As a result, the interface lags; OS animation, cursor movement, menu navigation, and typing all suffer, making remote operations a pain.

If you run the DMP-Z1 on the mains power, make sure both the Mac and the DMP-Z1 are connected to a common socket and solid earth… select a circuit without lights, appliances, fans, dimmers, etc, connected…

From the manual:

Notes on charging the battery

  • The charging time depends on the battery usage conditions.
  • This player is equipped with a function to avoid battery deterioration. Battery deterioration can occur when the battery is charged and discharged repeatedly.
    When you connect the player to an AC power source, after you turn off the player by holding down the (power) button for 2 seconds, charging continues until the battery is fully charged. Once the battery is fully charged, discharging will start. Discharging continues over a long period of time until the battery runs out.
    Therefore, the player may not turn on if you do not use the player for a long period of time. If you cannot turn on the player even when you hold down the (power) button for 4 seconds, disconnect and reconnect the AC adaptor (supplied). Charging will start, and then you can use the player.
  • When the battery is sufficiently charged but the battery life has dropped to about half of its normal span, the battery may be worn out. Contact the nearest Sony dealer or Sony Service Center.
  • When the ambient temperature exceeds the recommended range, appears on the screen and then charging is forcibly terminated. Charge the battery at an ambient temperature from 5 °C to 35 °C (41 ºF to 95 ºF).
  • The battery can be recharged about 500 times from a completely depleted state. The exact number of times may vary depending on the usage conditions.
  • To prevent deterioration of the battery, charge the battery at least once every 6 months.
  • The player may become hot while charging. This is not a malfunction.
  • The battery indicator does not correspond exactly to the remaining battery level. Refer to the battery indicator as a guide.
  • You cannot charge the player via the USB Type-C port.

:notes: :eye: :headphones: :eye: :notes:

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Ok, just a small contribution from my side.
Mac Mini is OK to host AS: it’s small, does not have a screeen and you can control it remotely (Important as sometimes you need to access the AS main GUI to do things that cannot be made from the remote).
From the audio quality perspective, I would recommend to use a network connection from Mac Mini to the streamer/DAC.
Then, the most important piece of the whole audio engine is the DAC of course.


The Sony DMP-Z1 does not have an Ethernet connection… it is designed to be headphone-centric… the MacMini is small enough and quiet enough to be in close proximity to the DMP-Z1 attached with a very short USB connection… I cannot imagine a network connection that will improve on this configuration… the premise is: “… to get the best sound-quality…” A network configuration just adds more potentials for data corruption through the various transitions between components and transmission protocols…
:notes: :eye: :headphones: :eye: :notes:

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