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View Full Version : New PC - windows 7.0 or windows 8.1?



norderney
2014-08-30, 23:59
I'm thinking of buying a new PC which amongst other things will run LMS.
I just wanted to check is Windows 8.1 ok fir running LMS version 7.90? Or would I be better with Windows 7.0?

Thanks

slate
2014-08-31, 00:38
I have LMS running on 8.1 both at home and at Work.

yeomanspc
2014-08-31, 00:39
I read the other day that Windows 7 support ends in January 2015 - frankly, I find it hard to believe, but I'll be going with Windows 8.1 from here-in.

slate
2014-08-31, 02:04
I read the other day that Windows 7 support ends in January 2015 - frankly, I find it hard to believe, but I'll be going with Windows 8.1 from here-in.

Well Windows 7 is 5 years old by now... and Windows 8.0 is 2 years old...

Windows 7 is still good and solid and will have driver support for some years to come. Since 2009 it have received various functionality updates, most notably the Platform Update to the graphics system required to support IE10.

But will it get IE12 and DirectX 12 for example? not sure

Windows 8.x... besides all the touch malarkey, offers many improvements that can be overlooked;
- faster boot
- native USB3 support
- UEFI BIOS support
- lower power consumption; cleaned up the internals so that the PC can stay longer at lower power levels
- redesigned printer handling
- all graphics 2D+3D are run hardware accelerated; this lead to the Platform Update for Windows 7
- lower memory usage
- ...

All in all a sleeker Windows... when Toms Hardware did a Browser Grand Prix comparing the various browsers on Windows 7 and 8 they could clearly see that all the browsers performance improved.

Deaf Cat
2014-09-02, 12:09
Just my experience,
went from XP long term, to windows 7 briefly, to 8
XP IME is by far the most reliable and bug free,
Win8 sounds the best when used for audio playback, I use slimserver and a couple of SB's,
Would go back to XP if it was still supported for day to day machine, reliable bug free operation!!!!
Windows 8 for music server just sounds better (same machine XP, win7, win8)

So I would go for 8 if music is involved, ease of use go for 7 as 8 is way different, I would love to go XP if it would run up to date office, etc

PS don't suppose you have tried wiring to your transporter with a Meicord?
IMO well worth a go, would be surprised if you dont hear a nice difference with your CDM1NT's

norderney
2014-09-02, 14:49
Thanks for the replies.

Deaf Cat - I was interested to read that you think Windows 8 is best for audio playback. I am currently using Windows Vista running on a 10 year old Dell PC.

You also mentioned Meicord cables. I assume you are referring to Ethernet cables. I have always used wireless connection for my Transporter mainly because of where the PC and Transporter are located. Running a very very long Ethernet cable was be difficult.
What audio setup do you run?

garym
2014-09-02, 16:14
Two things.

Don't worry about wifi vs Ethernet regarding sound quality. They are equal. You won't get subtle degradation of sound with bad wifi connection. You'll get dropouts or buffering. If your wifi works well, it's great. If you have wifi interference or weak signal leading to dropouts, then use Ethernet or Ethernet over powerline adapters.

Also, there are some improvements in PC sound with win 7 and win8, but these have absolutely nothing to do with sound from your squeezebox players. Even if your PC had no sound card or audio reproduction system, you could use it and LMS to feed your squeezeboxes. That's the beauty of the way squeezeboxes work. And one reason they were originally designed -- to get the PC sound card etc out of the playback chain.

Mnyb
2014-09-02, 16:49
Yes , that's the thing there is no way the LMS server can subtly influence the sound either it is up to the task to fill the players buffer which is >30 seconds or it's not .

And there is whole can of worms with drivers , kernel streaming wasapi drivers etc ? And whatnot the squeezebox system just bypasses it's basically designed to be server agnostic and it is .

For non squeezebox based PC audio there are things that would need to be adressed like getting bit perfect output and bypass mixers in the OS and adress the conected DAC or sound card directly etc . My knowledge of this is not current I got myself a squeezbox so I don't have to worry about this :) that's another topic but if you use the machine for other things than LMS it migth be of interest to you .

If you have reliable wifi you can keep using that , however that's usually don't last :) so I tend to use Ethernet to stationary equipment ,this is not subtle either if wifi goes bad you get buffering not subtle sq differences .

Which version of Win 7 is going to be unsupported ? In many corporate environments we just got to Win7 pro .

Mnyb
2014-09-02, 16:52
Aha end of mainstream free support in 2015 but security updates until 2020 for win 7 .

Deaf Cat
2014-09-03, 08:56
Thanks for the replies.

Deaf Cat - I was interested to read that you think Windows 8 is best for audio playback. I am currently using Windows Vista running on a 10 year old Dell PC.

You also mentioned Meicord cables. I assume you are referring to Ethernet cables. I have always used wireless connection for my Transporter mainly because of where the PC and Transporter are located. Running a very very long Ethernet cable was be difficult.
What audio setup do you run?

Hi
I have an old Lenovo PentiumD that runs win8, fidelizer and of course LMS.
I have disabled a lot of services, including the paging file. On board sound, and USB are disabled in the BIOS.
Trying different sata cables also made a difference to the sound.
Main aim is to have the pc doing as little as possible, and to my ears it makes a nice difference, I still have plenty to learn about.

I have recently added a network card so I could test out the win8 network bridge option. This allows the pc to send info direct to my SB Touch rather than go through a router, was not sure what would be best, but rather impressed at the improvement :-) This is where the Meicord is.

The SB Touch with linear psu runs SoundChecks Toolbox, cutting down its internal processing work to a minimum.

From the SBT I run digi coax to a Tag pre/dac,

Then I have a couple of Marchand XM44EMB boards (active crossover)

Rega Power amps and Ditton Floorstanders.


It may even be an option for you to buy a new pc, and use your old one as a dedicated music server, closer to the amp with an ethernet cable..

I have found it is all test and play see what works for my own ears.

Took me a good while to actually take the jump, to switch the paging file off as I understand it can cause serious problems sometimes if you turn it off.

Rather nice improvement and the pc still runs :-D free sound upgrade :-)

get.amped
2014-09-03, 09:21
Hi
I have an old Lenovo PentiumD that runs win8, fidelizer and of course LMS.


Doesn't fidelizer only affect playing audio files *on* the PC? It would have no affect on audio files sent to a SB.



I have disabled a lot of services, including the paging file. On board sound, and USB are disabled in the BIOS.
Trying different sata cables also made a difference to the sound.
Main aim is to have the pc doing as little as possible, and to my ears it makes a nice difference, I still have plenty to learn about.


Also would not affect sending audio files to a SB.



I have recently added a network card so I could test out the win8 network bridge option. This allows the pc to send info direct to my SB Touch rather than go through a router, was not sure what would be best, but rather impressed at the improvement :-) This is where the Meicord is.


Again, unless your router was faulty, would have no affect on sending audio files to the SB.


...

I have found it is all test and play see what works for my own ears.


Which is great, but your ears are tied to your expectations, and at least some of what you are doing is not tied to the fundamental principles of how TCP/IP networks function. Or computers for that matter. The type of SATA cable (or ethernet cable, or hard disc manufacturer) does not, in any way, alter the properties of the digital audio file being stored, read, copied or transmitted on the network.



Took me a good while to actually take the jump, to switch the paging file off as I understand it can cause serious problems sometimes if you turn it off.

Rather nice improvement and the pc still runs :-D free sound upgrade :-)
[/QUOTE]

Potentially disastrous. Better to set up a RAM disk and put the swapfile there. Windows goes about it's merry way without the latency associated with reading and writing to a physical HD. Or better yet, put the whole OS on an SSD. I'll never build another machine without one.

garym
2014-09-03, 09:25
Hi
I have an old Lenovo PentiumD that runs win8, fidelizer and of course LMS.
I have disabled a lot of services, including the paging file. On board sound, and USB are disabled in the BIOS.
Trying different sata cables also made a difference to the sound.
Main aim is to have the pc doing as little as possible, and to my ears it makes a nice difference, I still have plenty to learn about.

I have recently added a network card so I could test out the win8 network bridge option. This allows the pc to send info direct to my SB Touch rather than go through a router, was not sure what would be best, but rather impressed at the improvement :-) This is where the Meicord is.

The SB Touch with linear psu runs SoundChecks Toolbox, cutting down its internal processing work to a minimum.

From the SBT I run digi coax to a Tag pre/dac,

Then I have a couple of Marchand XM44EMB boards (active crossover)

Rega Power amps and Ditton Floorstanders.


It may even be an option for you to buy a new pc, and use your old one as a dedicated music server, closer to the amp with an ethernet cable..

I have found it is all test and play see what works for my own ears.

Took me a good while to actually take the jump, to switch the paging file off as I understand it can cause serious problems sometimes if you turn it off.

Rather nice improvement and the pc still runs :-D free sound upgrade :-)


No offense, but I hope that other readers of this thread will study a bit of what you've said above on their own, as most of the comments you've made about cause and effect in terms of sound quality are not just improbable or a matter of "taste" and "preferences" but actually *impossible* based on the clear engineering and science of how digital transmission of music works between the files, the server running LMS, the transmission method (wifi or ethernet) and the ultimate squeezebox players.

RonM
2014-09-03, 12:10
Potentially disastrous. Better to set up a RAM disk and put the swapfile there. Windows goes about it's merry way without the latency associated with reading and writing to a physical HD. Or better yet, put the whole OS on an SSD. I'll never build another machine without one.

I'm just building a new music server (which simply involves installing a drive on a FitPC, along with Windows). I've decided that a SSD is the way to go, along with an external hard drive for file storage. I'd avoided the external drive, but it just feels so much more secure. I can have a backup at hand and just pop it in if the drive toasts. A non-mechanical drive for the OS makes much more sense, with the larger storage external.

I'll be using one of those hard drive docks, hot swappable, and just use an internal-type drive plugged in.

R.

tcutting
2014-09-03, 12:12
Probably the biggest improvement in my system was taking the LMS server OFF of my desktop PC. My desktop PC gets used by multiple family members, stuff gets installed, updated. The power gets cycled and/or you need to re-boot for one reason or another. All of this can be irritating to someone trying to just access their music via LMS. I setup a relatively low-powered server which serves LMS, and also provides distributed file sharing so I can access the same files from my desktop, a laptop. And it's also available for other sharing tasks (although not very thoroughly utilized).
Most of the statements about how different configurations can impact your sound quality are dubious claims - as others have stated, the sound quality will be determined by the combination of your player (client) and connected audio componenents.

Deaf Cat
2014-09-03, 13:57
No offense, but I hope that other readers of this thread will study a bit of what you've said above on their own, as most of the comments you've made about cause and effect in terms of sound quality are not just improbable or a matter of "taste" and "preferences" but actually *impossible* based on the clear engineering and science of how digital transmission of music works between the files, the server running LMS, the transmission method (wifi or ethernet) and the ultimate squeezebox players.

No offence from here either, but if changing from a Hitachi Deskstar to a WD RE-4 somehow gives a different presentation to the music coming out of my speakers, and if I like it, the RE-4 stays. Vibration control...

I have no clue how RF, EMF, Capacitance, Inductance, crosstalk, jitter, noise, vibration etc. affect the audio signal or data transfer, that is why I let my ears do the testing. Read & digest what others say, and test what you feel like, that's how I see it anyway.

I do sometimes wish I could not hear the difference between the flat screen tv and the stereo setup, things would be so much simpler with just buying stuff from Argos :-)

Julf
2014-09-04, 06:42
I have no clue how RF, EMF, Capacitance, Inductance, crosstalk, jitter, noise, vibration etc. affect the audio signal or data transfer, that is why I let my ears do the testing. Read & digest what others say, and test what you feel like, that's how I see it anyway.

Which is great - as long as you make sure you really *only* use your ears. The best way to do that is a level-matched, double-blind ABX listening test.

get.amped
2014-09-04, 06:49
...if changing from a Hitachi Deskstar to a WD RE-4 somehow gives a different presentation to the music coming out of my speakers, and if I like it, the RE-4 stays. Vibration control...


Probably voodoo. You should get a shaman to dispel the spirits afflicting the Hitachi drive.



I have no clue how RF, EMF, Capacitance, Inductance, crosstalk, jitter, noise, vibration etc. affect the audio signal or data transfer...


Agreed.

adamdea
2014-09-06, 00:52
I'm thinking of buying a new PC which amongst other things will run LMS.
I just wanted to check is Windows 8.1 ok fir running LMS version 7.90? Or would I be better with Windows 7.0?

Thanks
As many people have said, 8.1 works fine.

Just another thought- It is worth considering though that you might want to turn your old machine into a dedicated LMS server (and maybe player). ( assuming that you have an old machine you are replacing ) Even if it struggles with windows above XP it will probably run like a spring lamb in Linux.

I'm currently playing with an old Vista machine this way as a complete Linux newb. It wasn't all that hard (with some help from the good folks around these parts- thanks) .

I'm guessing it could be done relatively painlessly using vortexbox.

I'm coming round to the view that it might be best to keep server duties away from my general purpose PC. That leaves you free to decide how to configure that PC independently.

Mnyb
2014-09-06, 00:59
A dedicated server is nice i'm happy with that solution My generell purpose machine have 2 OS and i somtimes play games on it and mess about with a lot of things . And my server only do LMS ( ClearOS Linux )