How to Improve the sound on a PC
10.12.2018 315 0 Ivan

How to Improve the sound on a PC

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Many computer owners are wondering about how can I improve the sound of quality on the computer. After all, today, the computer in the house is the center of entertainment and to get the maximum positive effect from games, watching videos, movies and listening of music, you need a high-quality sound. Moreover, high-quality sound is necessary for the professionals to working with the sound on the computer.

Audiophiles and experts in the field of sound argue that to get high-quality sound on the computer is quite difficult, at least because of the large internal interference on the computer. Therefore, connoisseurs of high-quality sound try to avoid the computer as a source of sound for their audio system.

But despite all sorts of shortcomings of the computer as a sound source, it is possible to significantly improve the sound quality on the computer to the level of Hi-Fi, even at minimal cost.

Ways to improve sound on your computer

Streacom DB4 Fanless Chassis (Case with a passive cooling system)

A simple and effective way to increase the sound level of any audio system is to reduce parasitic oscillations by vibration isolation audio components. Thus, in the audio system you can get an increase in sound quality up to 40%, depending on its class!

In the case of a computer, the main source of resonance is a magnetic hard disk (HDD). In addition to it, minor parasitic resonances create a cooler. Vibration isolation of coolers will not give a noticeable increase in sound. In the case of a hard drive, the increase will be noticeable, as with the reduction of vibration reduces the number of errors when reading information from the hard drive, which will increase not only the quality of sound, but also a positive impact on the software applications and extend the life of the hard drive.

Reduce the parasitic resonances of coolers and hard drive, it's simple - in the course are special pads and bolts of viscous rubber or silicone. It is worth noting, vibration will also reduce the noise of coolers and hard drives, what many annoying while listening to music.

Some manufacturers of computer case, for example, "Lian Li", in the create their own buildings already provide anti resonance of the solution and not just for hard drives. Computer cases "Lian Li", usually made of aluminum and additionally equipped with anti-vibration feet, which in General is an excellent solution for damping parasitic resonances for installed of computer electronics.

Sound card ASUS - Xonar Essence ST

In addition, to reduce data loss when reading from the hard drive, it is necessary to pay attention to the quality of the sata-cable. Replacement sata-cable with high-quality, in addition to improving the operation of installed software applications and extending the life of the hard drive, you can get a significant improvement in sound and video. On sale you can also find special devices AXF-94 from "Elfidelity", which improve power HDD or SSD and close access the distortion in the circuit. Of course, it is even better to abandon the mechanical disks and wires, and use ssd NVMe, that conection directly to the motherboard.

Owners of the internal sound card should also pay attention to the presence of internal electrical interference on the computer, which make noise in the audio card path. To reduce internal noise, it is possible by reducing the number of revolutions of the coolers located inside the PC case, shielding the power supply and sound card or even build a computer with a passive cooling system like "Streacom DB4" (Photo). Shielding of the power supply and internal sound card can be made independently or find ready-made solutions from manufacturers. For example, the internal sound card from ASUS - Xonar Essence ST already provides to shield the analog part (Photo). For coolers, it is also advisable to use a special optional filter, like "Elfidelity FAN Power filter" to reduce noise in the circuit. The video card better is used only integrated - according to many audiophiles, the video card is an by the main source of interference in the computer.

If the computer is connected to audio interfaces that use power from the computer for their work, you should pay attention to the quality of the computer power supply. The power supply must be powerful enough or the audio interfaces will not reveal their potential with cheaper power supply. All standard power supplies for a computer are pulsed - because it is cheaper and easier with high power. But better, if you buy a linear power supply, there are a lot of such on the market today, which begin up with $100-500 from Chinese "NoName" and with branded ones up to $5000 (From Mojo Audio). Linear power supplies are very weak, I managed to find the maximum power up 450 watts. Of course, this power is not enough if you plan to use a powerful video card. But there is compromise, in the market you need to look for low-noise switching power supplies. For example, as "Seasonic Prime Titanium SSR-600TL" (Photo), in addition, it passive power supply is without a cooler. The best reviews from the musicians received, also the top power supplies of the brand "Enermax".

Seasonic Prime Titanium SSR-600TL (Passive power supply)

Note the type of interface that connects your audio system to the audio interface. If you use a digital connection as coaxial, optical or USB, then in many cases the optical interface may be better than coaxial or USB because it is completely protected from electrical interference. Or use special USB-filters or audio USB-boards for PCI-express. If analog interfaces such as JACK, RCA or XLR are used for connection, the latter type will be the best - XLR is a mandatory standard in professional sound (Photo). Wireless connection, is probably will be the best in the budget options, because there are no wires and the DAC will be used from the audio system, which should be better than the DAC of motherboard.

What audio cables do you use? Certainly, those that were included in your audio system! In fact, in 99% of cases, the manufacturer equips its products with “free cables” - only to be able to check the performance of equipment. And most of the buyers do not know about it. But the quality of the cables used plays a significant role in the final sound. Even when transmitting a digital audio signal, with a low-quality cable in the sound may occur "failures".

Audiolab M-DAC Noir + M-PWR Noir with XLR connection

Experimenting with audiophile power cables, can dramatically change the sound of any audio system and exceed all your expectations. But do not pay much attention on this, if the audio system is budget level. On the contrary, owners of Studio monitors and Hi-Fi equipment should pay special attention to this issue.

The sound quality also depends on the software, you have installed to play the music files. Perhaps today, the best audio player for the computer, significantly different in sound from others, is "Album Player" (http://vv.uka.ru/aplayer.html).

And finally. Do not forget about high-quality filtering of the power supply network -clean current, without interference - it will significantly reduce noise in the audio path of connected audio sources.

To radical ways to improve the sound on the computer, include the change of components that significantly affect the sound quality from the computer, but also require significant material costs. What is more profitable to replace in your sound path - this question you have to decide for yourself.