I mostly use two inputs - my computer on HDMI and a music source on analog/RCA.
When using the analog/RCA source, I NEVER have the problem that this post is about. When using Spotify thru my computer, or watching a movie from my hard drive, I NEVER have this problem. It happens a lot when I am on my computer watching a video online (Hulu, Amazon, to a lesser extent Netflix).
The problem is that my speakers and subwoofers will make rapid fire noise that sounds like the popping noise when the system first powers on - but it's way too fast to be the amp actually power on/off, it's like 5x+ per second.
I have my amp hooked up to trigger 1 and on that trigger I have every source checked for input, both zones checked for power and every speaker checked. Headphone override is even checked. In other words, I've checked every box that I can for that trigger. Another trigger has the subs and is configured the same way. My firmware verion is 4.1 (17/05/04).
Is there something I can do to prevent this rapid-fire popping noise? (I'm assuming one pop at power-up is the nature of amps and nothing to do with XMC-1.) Please let me know of any ideas or if more info would help.
I assume you tried another PC (laptop maybe) to 100% rule out the PC. Could be a simple as the software used to playback the videos (since that software is different that that used for spotify) that are giving you problems.
I know you believe you understand what you think I wrote, but I’m not sure you realize that what you read is not what I meant.
It's probably not related to the the trigger. To verify, turn your amp(s) to "always on" and play some problematic content from the PC. If your sub has its own amp, then you've already partially proved this as the popping is heard from sub.
What sample rate is the PC output set to? It's entirely possible that, since it is connected via HDMI, the XMC-1 is expecting a video input, which would be 48khz, and then Spotify is sending a 44.1khz signal, and the XMC is renegotiating and adjusting to the input. If this is the case, you should be able to simply delay the trigger of the amp by 5 seconds or so and allow the XMC-1 to grab the proper clock before the amp turns on.
EDIT: Hold on, I just reread your post, and while I still think this is what is happening, obviously you said it DOESN'T happen with Spotify, so whatever source is giving you the popping is sending a different clock.
Last Edit: Jan 3, 2019 10:08:38 GMT -5 by thrillcat
Anthem AVM-60 • UPA-700 • AppleTV 4K • Nvidia Shield • PLEX Server • Sony UBP-X800 • eD Cinema Series 6MTM LCRs • eD Cinema Series Slant6 Surrounds • SVS PB-2000 • JVC DLA-X790R • Seymour Center Stage UF 115" • Harmony Elite
Part of what made me think it was the triggers, is that by turning Spotify on low volume during streaming playback, I can always stop all the popping. But, I hadn't thought of any ways to actually try to solve anything!
For starters I am going to turn my amps to always on as suggested, and watch some Netflix, Hulu, Amazon video over the next few days (I always do this in Chrome - guess if popping continues I'll just try another browser). Then I will report back. I will probably have follow-up questions - thanks again!
Edit: thrillcat, my above response directly incorporated bootman and millst answers... to answer your question, my PC (win10) has XMC-1 set to stereo and 16 bit, 48 khz. It always sets itself back this way, though I periodically flip it to 5.1 channels and the highest quality setting (24 bit, 192 khz). I don't really know anything about the implications of this, just figured 5.1 is obviously what I have and the higher the quality setting the better. When I watch movies from my hard drive, I use powerdvd16; it sends non-decoded audio to xmc-1 over hdmi and I've never had popping with it, nor AVG. Only chrome... I'm not sure which of these things if any may be relevant for you folks that do know what you are talking about.. Thanks again.
Last Edit: Jan 3, 2019 15:09:34 GMT -5 by taigovinda
I guess I didn't need a couple or few days to test this.
I turned my amp and subwoofers to 'always on' instead of using the triggers. Still occasional popping on Chrome, that is pretty consistent when starting a video on amazon or hulu, or when going back and forth from commercials to programs on hulu. I mentioned rapid-fire popping in my original post - this usually doesn't happen but when it does, it's super-annoying and is what caused me to finally ask if there is something I could do. It hasn't happened yet but I've only been trying it out for 20 mins and suspect it would happen sooner or later; the pops I am getting seem to prove you guys were right that it's not the triggers.
Even when computer volume is set to 'mute' then there is still a pop most times when I navigate to the page where I could push the play button for a show on Amazon (before I actually even try to play the show).
I switched from Chrome to IE. Still occasional popping.
I don't have a different computer with HDMI.
Any ideas if there is something I can do to make the issue go away? Maybe a Win10 setting or something? The concept of clocking that thrillcat mentioned is lost on me so far. I do notice that whether I am using Chrome or IE or Spotify, the XMC-1 display keeps saying PCM 5.1 / 192khz / 24 bit.
I would guess that you are just running into a known issue with the XMC-1. It is known to generate some clicking/popping noises or drop some signal content when the stream changes format (channel count, sample rate, silent<->non-silent). On my system, it manifests itself as some of the menu navigation noises getting cut off when using my Shield. Doesn't really bother me, but sounds like your system is more problematic.
Emotiva made some improvements with firmware updates, but it is what it is now. Some options you could try:
1) Update your sound drivers. 2) Try different sound output configurations. In particular, try to prevent changes in the output format. Example, set it to 2-channel instead of 5.1/7.1. Of course, that has the down side of losing discrete surround sound. 3) Switch to an application that uses WASAPI exclusive mode. 4) Turn off system sounds (navigation noises, in particular). 5) Try a different hardware connection (USB or SPDIF).
There used to be some programs that would constantly play some very quiet (inaudible?) white noise, which would keep the receiver/pre-pro locked on to the computer's output signal. Not sure if they are still a thing.
Thanks millst, each of these 6 ideas sounds like it might work or help. So far I've tried 1 (no new drivers available), 2 (not sure if I've successfully locked in 5.1; tried turning off cec over hdmi and monitoring whether it worked), and 4 (went to a website to figure out how to shut off sounds; closing that website made a pop lol). Normally I get pretty subtle pops, one at a time, when an app starts to make sounds; sometimes I get rapid-fire popping which is pretty annoying. If your ideas get rid of the rapid-fire then I will be very happy
Post by dctodaylight on Feb 12, 2019 12:45:01 GMT -5
I have the same issue. It will be a quick succession of pops when the audio format changes. This happens on HDMI, for example when I start a movie and the audio format changes from the menus sounds (Vero 4K box) to the movie track and on 2 channel audio via the digital coax input (Rpi Roon endpoint with an Allo card). Never happens with analog in. This is pretty annoying and I am confident that it started up after one of the firmware upgrades. Had it happened out of the box when I first replaced my UMC-200 I would have sent the unit back. I also have a related issue where Zone 2 puts out a very loud pop on format change, even when Zone 2 is off. I had to disconnect Zone 2 so it would not damage my speakers. I opened a ticket with support and outlined all my troubleshooting steps and they issued an RMA for repair, I have not sent it in yet but will be doing so soon.
Well the ultimate option is to replace the XMC-1 for another surround processor.
HTPC: Vero 4K Blu-Ray: OPPO BDP-103EU Zone & region free Xbox One X for gaming & UHD discs EOS Cable TV box Denon Heos Link HS2 Surround pre-processor: Emotiva XMC-1 Power amplifiers: 5* Hypex NCore400 SMPS600 TV: LG OLED55C7 Speakers: 4* XTZ 99.38MKii + 1* XTZ 99.36MKii Remote: Harmony Elite
Post by dctodaylight on Feb 13, 2019 10:38:58 GMT -5
I do not think it is intrinsic to the XMC-1 but rather something up with my particular one. If you are not seeing (hearing) this behavior on your unit with the same Vero 4K source that is another data point to consider. What firmware version are you running?
I just need to get around to hooking my UMC-200 back up and sending the XMC-1 in to let them take a look at it.
Yes, it is intrinsic to the XMC-1 and its software. Emotiva has already said that and worked on improving their code. There are several long threads about this.
Every time there is a format change, the XMC-1 software must figure out what the new format is (which is not as easy as you might think). Audio must be muted during the determination process or you will probably hear something nasty (clicks, pops, screeches, etc.). Take too long to determine or mute too much, you lose signal content.
Whether an individual experiences this with their XMC-1 depends on many factors. Some of those include:
Firmware revision: Emotiva tweaked that code throughout Source device: streaming boxes and cable boxes are usually worse Input type: non-issue on analog, but SPDIF and HDMI vary Speaker preset: Dirac is usually worse Source material
“Digital Popping” is THE most unsettling and frightening occurrence that has partnered along with Digital audio. I had it a couple of times even before bringing in the XMC1, with my retired Sunfire AV processor. The first warning ⚠️ we got about it goes back to DTS being the new thing and being warned about setting a player in DTS mode with a non equipped AV processor, as I recall, but as time has passed there have been more instances where you get stung by it. Additionally, the higher the amplifier power, the worse it is when the bad thing happens. After 4.1, I never experienced it again with my current configuration.
Allison IC-20's Allison Al 115 Allison NL 1440 Velodyne HGS 18 Emotiva XMC-1 Sunfire Signature 5 channel Amp. 3D Samsung BD-F7500 3D SONY UHP H1 Samsung 8000 3D 55" Denon cassette deck and VCR from the stone age!
Post by dctodaylight on Feb 16, 2019 14:22:05 GMT -5
Interesting, I am running version 5.4 dated 12/6/2018 speaker presets are Dirac. I will try setting those to default and see if there is any difference. I also noticed last night watching a movie that the display said 192 Khz DTS for the audio track but mediainfo says 48 Khz DTS. There a few audio output settings in the Vero box I will play with.
I can also swap out the Allo card on the Roon end point for a DAC and run analog, but I like the way the XMC DAC sounds vs. the Allo one. The other workaround I have found for 2 channel was to force the output on the Allo card to a fixed rate but that chews up a lot of CPU on my Roon server. Good excuse to do some upgrades.