Re: OT question about sound cards/chip-sets and high-end music systems
Paul E Condon put forth on 10/5/2009 12:18 PM:
> Years ago (~35y), I spent a lot of money to get a really good sound
> system to play my CDs. It was fully transistorized. The loud speakers
> are big, with woofer, mid-range and tweeter, and are driven by a
> really heavy power amplifier box. Because of the solid-state
> internals, it has worked without interruption or servicing of any
Sounds like it's time for you to build a media center PC
or (possibly better) buy one pre-built:
DISCLAIMER: I am not promoting this D-Link product. I have no first
hand experience with it. I mention it strictly as an example of a class
of products that would fulfill your needs.
It has wireless ethernet so you don't have to call a contractor to run
CAT5 through your house. It has both optical digital and coaxial
digital audio outputs for connecting directly to your modern A/V
receiver's digital audio inputs. This will eliminate any sound quality
issues related to cheap PC sound card problems.
This D-Link requires a host PC on the network running Vista or XP SP2.
I assume they have a software package one installs on the PC to control
the D-Link and setup shares for the media file directories, etc.
If you search around, you can probably find a similar product that would
allow you to use Linux instead of Windows (i.e. one with a web based
management interface with no software requirement on the PC). I'm
guessing all you will find is products offering support for total media
entertainment, not just CD/MP3/audio. You're a smart guy. You'll
figure out what product/solution is best for your needs.
The cheapest solution by far is to use your current PC, and have a
contractor come in and run an in wall digital optical cable from the
room your PC is in to the room your A/V receiver is in. Plug a Toslink
patch cable from the wall to the PC, and from the wall to the A/V
receiver and you're done. If you go this route you'll need a PC
hardware solution with a digital audio output (Toslink connection).