HQPlayer - Can it improve the audio performance of my system?

Hi,

I am considering buying HQPlayer and use it as an add on when using Roon. It is rather expensive.
Does anybody of you have any experience here and can tell, whether it gives a better audio performance.

I would really like recommendations here :slight_smile:

All the best
Frank / from Denmark

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The good news is that you can download and install it and try it out for yourself before buying. The non-licensed trial version is identical to the licensed program, except it stops play after a period of time (I think 15 minutes).

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I guess it depends on the DAC, too, since some resample everything, e.g., Hegel, Cambridge Audio (?), and others do something similar to HQPlayer.

@Frank_Helenius2, what DAC do you use? But I agree with @andybob, give it a try. Likewise, if you haven’t done already, try Roon DSP. For instance, one of my DACs benefits from powers of two oversampling.

See this post from a similar thread:

What is HQPlayer and why might I want it? - #2 by dabassgoesboomboom

Definitely worth the money for me. It does things Roon cannot do.

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Hi,

I have an aavik amplifier and streamer - the amplifier with built in DAC. Really good sound.
I have not worked with DSP as it is manual control. Would love some recommendations or settings that could improve sound.

Aaviik’s own app sounds better than Roon - in comparison Roon can sound a bit flat but I love the interface, therefore I am trying to figure what’s best to improve the sound on Roon.

All the best
Fran

I don’t believe adding HQPlayer, or anything else for that matter, is the correct solution. It would be better to understand why you perceive a difference between Roon and the Aavik app, bearing in mind that Roon will deliver bit-perfect if set up correctly.

Therefore, I think it would be beneficial to describe your setup in more detail, with model numbers, and screenshots of Roon signal path and device setup.

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My experience. I have used the trial version but have not paid for it yet.

  1. It’s not a set and forget kind of thing. It does require reading through the manual and flipping various configurations knobs to find the right combination for both your electronics and the kind of music you listen to. That last one is important. If you listen to a lot of different genre you may find you prefer different settings based on what you’re listening to. Do not dive in lightly but be ready to experiment and walk a bit of a learning curve. None of that is a negative. I find the software to be a well worth its cost.
  2. It got the magic. It does elevate the listening experience and sometimes by a lot. I don’t claim to truly understand what exactly it is doing or why it even works with my oversampling DAC so well but it does.

Why I’ve not purchased it…
I often times prefer the filters in my DAC. I bought this DAC specifically because of its sound signature (or lack of signature?). I also don’t have a machine to run HQP full time so its not always available. I’m in process if deciding on a NOS DAC and my plan there is to use HQP with it. At that point I’ll also identify a place to run it permanently and will purchase a license.

Running it in trial mode convinced me I need to move in the HQP direction but also it’s not required with my current set-up. But also… I need to work towards newer / better / blah-de-blah set-up. You know… like everything in this hobby… I found a new upgrade path and I’m starting to walk it. Be careful out there folks. Your wallets are vulnerable to the upgrade itch at all times :stuck_out_tongue:

But, yeah, go load it and try it. Great fun.

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@Frank_Helenius2 Here is an example of configuring 2x in Roon DSP

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The free trial is your friend. For me, the main value is in bringing my Holo NOS DACs to the next level through the right choice of upsamplers and modulators, beyond what I was able to achieve with Roon’s built-in capabilities. I have HQPlayer Embedded on Linux for one, HQP Desktop on Mac Mini M1 for the the other (different locations). The Mac Mini M1 setup is a real winner in performance/cost.

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@Frank_Helenius2

While the trial version will enable you to tell how HQ Player sounds in your own system, I have used it for nearly seven years and have been very impressed with the sound quality. For the past five years or so I have been using a Holo Spring DAC set to NOS so all the oversampling is done in HQ Player and the DAC does nothing but convert to analog.

If you do decide to purchase, then you should get in touch with @bibo01, Gianluca is an HQ Player Reseller and can offer a discount to Roon users.

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Yes, Roon will deliver bit-perfect data but your DAC, like most DAC’s, is probably going to upsample/oversample the data in the DAC chip. Given that DAC chip has very limited compute resources, that is one reason people use HQP on a well configured computer that has much more compute resources so that the data being received by the DAC is exactly (or close) what the DAC chip wants so that little or no additional upsample/oversample is needed.

Plus you can use a variety of filters and modulators with HQP vs the ones built into the DAC.

That said, try the 30-day trial to see for yourself. Be warned there is a learning curve required.

I have discrete DAC, and this has something like 500x the processing power of an integrated DAC chip.

However, my point was to understand why the OP perceives different sound from the same sources played via two different apps.

That is still very little compared to what modern fastest CPU + GPU combination can do. Including things like digital room/headphone correction, etc along the way with oversampling filters and modulators.

It would be good to know why that is.

That’s all I need and want; I’m satisfied with my setup, and see little point running the “ fastest CPU + GPU combination” to enjoy music.

But, as I’ve already said, this is neither about me nor showcasing HQP, but the OP, and why there is a difference between Roon and Aavik app.

Then the topic of this thread is misleading.

But I look HQPlayer from objective perspective.

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Hmmm I wasn’t aware Hegels and CA offered very flexible convolution engines built-in? For every source input, be it analogue and digital sources.

For speaker DSP crossover and room correction and headphones correction/EQ

Hmmm I have the same question ever after reading that

You are talking about only one part of HQPlayer but I’m talking about the rest of what it can do.

CNXv2 and the likes are like poor man’s HQPlayer, with very limited processing capabilities. Just like DAC chips, to a very low 32-bit 384 kHz format. And they totally lack things like custom delta-sigma modulators.

HQPlayer can upsample to for example to 49.152 MHz 64-bit using much more advanced filters, and this before employing delta-sigma modulators and such. Modulators are as important as the digital oversampling filters, or maybe even more important.

And this is still not including things like digital room or headphone correction you can do along the way.