Media playback quality .. Internal HDD vs NAS Stream

  • I put a spare WD red 4Tb Hard Drive formatted Ext 4 inside my HTPC and uploaded some videos & music to it

    Comparing NAS Stream to the internal HDD

    With the internal Hard Drive:

    Video appears better, eg: 4K has more clarity with better depth & slightly better colour & sharpness

    Sound in video is different, loud action noises, etc are clearer & louder, where as vocals are a bit subdued by this

    Audio is also better, HD music definitely has more punch in bass & high treble is slightly sharper and clearer

    NAS: OMV 3.0.99 wired / intel G3258 / Asus Z97K

    HTPC: LE 8.2.5 / intel i3-7100 / Gigabyte H270M-D3H

    GTX1050 to 4K OLED / STX Essence to Aktimate Mini

    intel i3-7100 / Gigabyte H270M-D3H / GTX1050 / STX Essence

  • If you stream media to the same playback device the output should be identical. If you are comparing output from the NAS 'PC' vs the HTPC 'PC' they have different hardware (different GPUs) so you get different output from different drivers etc.

  • The NAS was streaming to the HTPC via ethernet cable: NAS↭switch↭access point↭router↭HTPC

    I know output should be identical with either a LAN connection, an internal HDD or a external HDD

    But the picture & especially the sound quality difference has been confirmed by 2 other people

    The reason all this happened is because I'm going away for a while, new hardware in my knees, and I definitely don't want others mucking around with my network servers, so the servers will be shutdown and all popular media in the household will be on the HTPC's internal HDD

    I hard reset LibreELEC

    Then before putting the HDD inside my HTPC, I formatted it to Ext 4 & loaded the media, all this was done with a QNAP server

    Previously, when booting up the HTPC:

    Settings / System / Display / Refresh Rate would often need attention as it would revert 30.00 instead of 59.94

    And Audio / Audio output device would revert to ALSA: HDA NVidia, HDMI #

    I always checked & corrected these on boot up

    It's now consistantly booting to 60.00 reflesh rate& ALSA: Xonar STX Multichannel

    Also indexing media went smoother & fanart, posters etc are different, but the main standout is the punch in the bass

    intel i3-7100 / Gigabyte H270M-D3H / GTX1050 / STX Essence

  • Unless you have "adjust refresh rate" enabled so the TV is switched to the same fps rate as the media, the media is being resampled to match what the TV is statically set to and resampling is a lossy process. That's the only explanation I can think of for a sonic difference.

  • I'm pretty sure that the sound & picture quality went off a bit after a few visitors stayed over a few months back, I think the monitor refresh rate & alsa audio device on boot went crackers about then too

    So it must have been something out of whack - that the "Hard Reset" sorted out

    those aktimate mini's fed by the stx essence should sound that good

    intel i3-7100 / Gigabyte H270M-D3H / GTX1050 / STX Essence