Volumio 3 hosed the best feature of Volumio

The sound quality has taken a dip in Volumio 3. It pretty much sounds like Moode and probably for the same reason.

The underlying OS has been Jesse for a very long time. I think the Volumio developers have known for a long time that the sound quality would not be as good in Buster and that is why it has taken so long to get there. Moode has been using Buster for awhile and compared to Volumio it sounds thinner and less present. Volumio 3 sounds like that now.

Went back to Volumio 2 and it is apples and oranges. Tried it on several different systems including one built around Cabasse Artis Baltic II & Thor II and had several people do listening and Volumio 3 is hard to listen to after hearing Volumio 2.

This is a little depressing considering I just started using the Tidal Connect feature and I’ll never be able to update Volumio past 2.917.

Hoping Volumio sounds better in future releases, but I have a horrible feeling that whatever has changed will never be changed back.

Maybe offer a “Jesse” version for people who can tell and like the way Jesse sounded. Similar to how you offer a “classic” interface for people who don’t like the new one.

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I listened carefully to Volumio 3 last night.

It is still very enjoyable, and it sounds more detailed, but I agree that it iis tonally thinner than Volumio 2.

For the time being I will revert to 2.917

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To me, Volumio 3 sounds much better!
Significantly more details, more space, more real life.
I am definitely sticking to Volumio 3 - Thank you guys for the great upgrade!

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I did notice slightly more detail in the highs with Volumio 3, but I was trying not to counter my point in the original post. The friend with the Cabasse speakers noted that there was “more information” in the highs compared to 2x, but the loss of tonality, lows, and three dimensionality made 2x a better option. Like I said in the OP Moode has had almost this exact sonic signature ever since they switched to Buster. He actually ran Moode for several months, but we realized upon trying Volumio again that we would have to be in flat Earth levels of denial not to realize that Volumio just sounded more enjoyable. Switching back to Volumio 2 from 3 creates the same “what was I thinking?” kind of feeling.

Will try the Bullseye images to see if there is any hope for the future for anyone that cares about SQ.

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I agree. Sound is better in v3. Performance is also way faster.

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I tend to agree on some of your comments on V3 vs V2, but it’s a trade off. For me the biggest with the new version is in the dynamics, everything sounds a bit lean… On the other end V3 does sound “cleaner” and more controlled to my ears than the previous version.

I’m finding the sound is slightly tighter, more dynamic. Initial thoughts were more treble or air, but it’s more subtle and far reaching than that.
Definitely prefer the cleaner sound of V3.

Now all we need is for the developers to tell us, no changes were made to the ‘sound’, and we are all deluded audiofools😂

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‘Now all we need is for the developers to tell us, no changes were made to the ‘sound’, and we are all deluded audiofools😂’

In which case, don’t be too hard on yourselves. There are people out there that believe in ‘upgraded’ fuses in their mains plugs.

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Let’s vote. I vote for “V3 slightly better”. More body and space.

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Indeed.

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I vote for “we are all deluded audiofools”, made my day :wink:

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I think the real question is that if it was bit perfect and still is bit perfect, how would it be different?(granted that everything else did stay the same):slight_smile:

I haven’t done any testing regarding this myself, if I did it would have to be blind test anyway.

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Indeed if both setups are identical (Same used hardware, same rPi board), and Volumio plays bit-perfect there is no difference in audio quality, or one is more detailed then the other.
This means for volumio:

  • Clean installation of Volumio with no plugins installed
  • Mixer type to none, or both to hardware
  • DSD Auto Volume level = Off
  • Volume Normalization = Off

Both systems must sound equal. If you still hear differences, then Volumio is not bit perfect.
As volumio whole intense is to play bit-perfect.

In the same comparison we can discuss how the online version of a book has a better story then the printed one…

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Yes but V3 really brings out the best in the $2000 fuse that @Volpi persuaded me to invest in.

My ears aren’t reliable, but it is louder. After upgrade I had to adjust the volume down to match my phono’s output.

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Hi there, Thanks @volumio devs for all the great work in keeping Volumio a modern and slick audio system. It looks great! I initially thought that it would be hard to hear any significant difference in sound quality between V2.x and V3.x. In the past days, I did some extensive A/B comparison with both installations side to side, using Pi3b+ connected via USB to a Topping E50 DAC (+NAD d3020, Kef LS50 meta’s). When all settings are kept equal, I really prefer the sound of the V2.x setup: there is more definition (particularly at a lower volume setting), a ‘more transparant sound stage’, and slightly better presentation of female voices (don’t use such audiophile blabla much, but I need to say something about what I hear, as long I cannot measure the signal myself…). Perhaps it remains a matter of taste, or something one would get used to in the long run, because I have been listening to V2.x for quite a while now. Still, it is very clear to me now that a sound difference exists, but it’s hard to understand why this might be. Any idea’s from the developers?

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Update of my previous post: I may have found the issue. It seems like OTA update from the V3.x Beta to the latest version of the official release is NOT a good idea. BTW, this was also pointed out by the @volumio folks in one of their posts (which I missed). It seems that this was the cause of the ‘shallow’ performance of my V3.x installaties. After a proper instalation (flash latest version on a card > go) the sound was at least at the same level as before. Sorry for any confusion (learning by doing…).

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I can deflate that theory in about 2 seconds. I have tried doing the update from 2x to 3x beta to 3x official release AND just installing 3x to an SD card. Doesn’t make any sonic difference. This isn’t Windows. You’re not doing a dirty install when you update. The update completely replaces your previous install.

I thought about this last night and it occurred to me that 3x being a stinker is fine. I still have access to 2.917. 2.917 still supports My Volumio and every other feature that 3x currently offers. There is no reason to be upset until one of those things changes. I could potentially happily run 2x for years. By the time 2x is truly obsolete there will certainly be a better option. Maybe Rune will have Tidal Connect by then. Also cured of my compulsive urge to check for updates. Its a win-win.

Strange. Here the OTA update is the only difference between the 2 installations. Blind comparison (A/B) of both installations leads to reproducible results. Clean install (at least in my case) brought Volumio soundwise on par again with the latest V2.x. Btw, if the OTA of the V3.x beta would be a real clean install, I would expect that it would take much longer to complete and that preferences would be gone (I did not have to provide any details after the install).

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And another strange observation: after the clean V3.x install I can play MQA files natively, which was not possible after the beta OTA update. In conclusion: for me the sound itself is not better or worse than in V2.x, it is exactly the same.

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Bit perfect is only half the story. Music is data and timing. Changes to the timing will change the audio quality. That’s why I created the music services shield plug-in. It can reduce the likelihood of competition for CPU processing to impact timing

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