Multichannel or 2-channel USB stage?

During previous years, some of our customers experienced problems trying to connect S5 and AYA 5 DACs to some USB sources. It turned out that these difficulties were all associated with the recent generation of Linux-based streamers, more particularly speaking, based on a Logitech Music Server (LMS).

Narrowing the problem further down, we have found that it was caused by the streamers’ inability to work with more than 2-channel devices. While the problem did not occur with all LMS-based devices, for instance, Daphile worked well (it is only limited in a way it won’t play multichannel but only stereo files), and some streamers’ manufacturers readily addressed this problem by adding multichannel support (for instance Lumin, for their U1 mini), and although this would be the preferred solution anyhow, in some cases the only way out was to “roll-back” the USB stage to 2-channel, i.e. stereo.

By the same token, we provided the file so the customers could migrate their USB stage channel count from 4 to 2, themselves, by loading an appropriate file from the Windows driver control panel.

Moreover, as some customers will not like to deal with this at all, especially if they don’t need a multichannel feature, we now offer the option to ship the S5 with a USB stage programmed for two channels. Of course, in this case, the A-link output, which carries the possible 3rd and 4th channels from the USB stage, does not function.

And, in this case, the opposite process is also possible. For the units that are factory programmed for 2-channel USB, we provided the appropriate migration file so the customers could migrate their USB stage from 2- to 4-channel.

It might also be worth noting that the migration process, in either direction, is reversible, i.e. the firmware can be reset, to its factory default.

These migration files apply to the S5 and AYA 5 DACs and the USB interface board Mk3 programmed for Philips simultaneous data output. The files and detailed instructions are available for download on these products’ pages, in their download areas, which are accessible with the customers’ accounts.

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