Audio quality and libsamplerate...

Chad.Heuschober at Chad.Heuschober at
Mon Mar 26 17:08:53 CEST 2007

Has the in/exclusion of libsamplerate (aka 'secret rabbit code') in alsa 
been discussed yet?

It may seem like a fringe topic but part of the success of devices like 
this is attributed to their ability to do the jobs of many devices at 
once. When it comes to playing music, for the most part, portable players 
are generally very poor performers (with some notable exceptions). It made 
me very happy to see the inclusion of a wolfson dac in the device as, 
traditionally, wolfson dacs have much better power handling and higher 
quality output than other dacs. This is why v1 and v2 iPods, which use the 
wolfson chips, have superior sound production to later iterations.

If libsamplerate is included as part of the core the choice can be left to 
the user to enable some of the other samplers (like samplerate-best) and 
sacrifice the requisite cpu cycles in their .asoundrc. There's not a huge 
cost in KiB's and inclusion of the library doesn't dictate that a user 
MUST use the more expensive converter. Personally, I'd like to see it 
included since it's obvious a mixer is necessary and samplerate 
conversions will occur. But I'm also someone who has canalphones that cost 
more than a high-end iPod so it's possible my opinion is skewed. I do 
firmly believe that, assuming the power handling is done well and there 
isn't voltage bleeding (which would be silly considering that this is a 
mobile device and can't afford it) or rampant emi, that this device has 
the potential to reach into the upper echelon of audio production and 
could further distinguish itself by taking that crown from other 

(Thinking about that inevitable 'comparison' article on a tech website).

Thoughts? If a 'good idea' who does this get passed to?

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