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The SugarCube Is Here At Last...Clicks & Pops R.I.P.

Discussion in 'Audio Hardware' started by DigMyGroove, Nov 12, 2017.

  1. Old Zorki II

    Old Zorki II Storm Watcher

    Location:
    near Tampa, FL
    Just checked on my iPad, works just fine.
    Myself I almost never use it and prefer use processor loop on/off on preamp (in this case even interconnects are out of the picture when bypassing), while my mini is always on.
     
  2. keiron99

    keiron99 Forum Resident

    Location:
    Stockport, UK
    I listen to some acoustic music which triggers it, and for example Kraftwerk's Autobahn (electronic, as I'm sure you know!) always triggers it. That said, I usually have it set at about 7 purely because I am unable to hear any sonic degradation between the low and high settings.

    I will however test using a lower setting and report back.

    But even with this occasional annoyance, it's still awesome :D
     
  3. Jim0830

    Jim0830 Forum Resident

    I'm curious about the clicking from those of you who have or had it. When I first got mine I remember I had it, but it has been gone from my life since mid-July. Correct me if I am wrong, but I remember 2 things. First: It was a constant volume. It didn't seem to vary in level with the volume control settings. It was there if I was close to the left speaker which happens when I go flip a record. Second: I never remember it making it's way onto any of the AAC files I digitized simultaneously as I listed. TIA.
     
  4. Stereolove

    Stereolove Forum Resident

    Location:
    Melbourne
    So I pulled the trigger on the unit, and would appreciate as much feedback as possible, about the initial set-up.

    1. Do the units arrive with the most recent software version embedded in the system?
    2. Does the unit require a wifi dongle?
    3. Does the unit always need to be connected to the internet via an Ethernet cable? I don’t have a modem in my house. All access to the internet is via tethering to my iPhone. I have a laptop with an Ethernet port. Will this allow me to update the unit, if the laptop is tethered to my iPhone?
    4. How do you update the firmware / software?
    5. Any other hints / tips / tricks / faults to be aware of.

    Thank you in advance.
     
  5. Jim0830

    Jim0830 Forum Resident

    I predict your going to love this device. Welcome aboard!

    1) I would say it depends how new the most recent firmware upgrade is. If it has been out for a while, yes. If it was still being tested when the unit shipped probably not. It is easy enough to update.

    2) I use ethernet. But mine came with a USB WiFi adapter that plugs into a USB port in the back. Many folks here use WiFi

    3) No the internet connection is only for the firmware upgrade. You will need a WiFi connection to use the SC remotely via a browser or the app. But you can also control it with buttons on front panel. I would think it should work just fine as you describe, depending on your speeds it might be a bit slow. ONLY FOR SC-2. SC-2 MINI etc: If your unit has recording it might be faster to download the tracks to the supplied USB stick and transfer to laptop by sneaker net. They also have the manual available online but this is only if you need it in the future. You should get a PDF of the manual on the USB stick if your unit records. Don't know what happens with SC-1 series.

    4) If you are always connected to the internet you can set a setting to update automatically. When the unit is inactive for a period of time it will check for upgrades and auto-update. If not set to auto update. just establish an internet connection and use the SUPPORT button on Home Screen of the software (browser or app) to enter the support area. Press the updates button and it will give you the status of your unit, and you can check for an update.

    5a) Whenever you do a firmware update they recommend doing a shutdown/restart of the unit. Also true if you are having issues. You turn the rear power button off and after 3 seconds turn it back on.

    5b) Any time the unit is powered down it enters the BYPASS mode, where the signal is not processed. You must turn BYPASS off. I can always tell if my unit has been powered off due to power outage of firmware upgrade. Suddenly I hear clicks again and sure enough it is on BYPASS. If your unit records, the tracks are saved unprocessed in the memory of the unit. The settings like format (AAC, MP3 etc) and amount of noise reduction are applied on export. So you can format the same saved recording in several ways.

    5c) Use the Monitor Clicks button in the REPAIR area to listen only to what I being removed. you should not hear music, only clicks being removed. I generally use 3/10, but the unit defaults to 5/10 on a restart. This is OK to I have never hear and musical information being removed.

    Enjoy!!
     
    Strat-Mangler and Stereolove like this.
  6. keiron99

    keiron99 Forum Resident

    Location:
    Stockport, UK
    Tha's very odd. I have just been testing, on my unit at least it definitely DOES vary with the volume setting - as you'd expect, really.
     
    Stereolove likes this.
  7. keiron99

    keiron99 Forum Resident

    Location:
    Stockport, UK
    I've been experimenting today. As you say, and as Dan from Sweet Vinyl comments, it does depend on the level.

    I was testing with Kraftwerk's Autobahn. At level 5 or above, it always triggers the clicking. 4 or lower and it doesn't.

    I will now start listening at level 4 and see how I get on, whether there are more pops than I would usually tolerate. (I usually have it set at 7 as in my experience, I cannot detect any degradation in audio quality at all.)
     
    Ben Adams and Stereolove like this.
  8. Stereolove

    Stereolove Forum Resident

    Location:
    Melbourne
    Thank you so much for your detailed response. I just went with the SC1 Mini, as I like to take my records out and play them. Can’t wait to see how it all comes together. Goodbye to buying multiple copies of the same record due to record noise. ✅
     
    Hogues and keiron99 like this.
  9. Stereolove

    Stereolove Forum Resident

    Location:
    Melbourne
    I love Autobahn. Will be interesting to see how it sounds. My copy is pretty clean, though Radio-Activity was a shocker. New copy, complete disaster.
     
    keiron99 likes this.
  10. Jim0830

    Jim0830 Forum Resident

    I think you may be correct actually. I tend to listen at then same relative volume settings on my Parasound HINT 6 (between 66-72 out of 99) which would explain it. When I had the clicking problem when I first got my SC-2 Mini I would restart the SC to try to make it go away, which it usually did. As soon as I noticed it, I restarted. When my SC was delivered I was recovering from a transplant operation, so with the drugs I was on I wasn't the sharpest tool in the shed. I think what I may be remembering is it was at the same relative volume to the music playing and where I always listened at the same volume...duh. Sorry for the confusion it was probably my own confusion.
     
    keiron99 likes this.
  11. gmeese34

    gmeese34 Forum Resident

    Location:
    Indiana
    Could you briefly explain the process of digitizing records? I know you can plug in a USB stick and it supposedly picks up the metadata, but when the USB stick goes to the computer how are the tracks/albums organized? Would they import into a music library that you could download to, say, an iPhone?
     
  12. Jim0830

    Jim0830 Forum Resident

    Before exporting the files you select the CODEC you wish to use: WAV, FLAC, AAC, MP3, AIFF, ALAC as well as the Bit Rate and Sample Rate. You choose whether to export individual files or album sides. You set this as a preference and unless you are making a change you set it once. An export consists of a single format (WAV, FLAC,... etc) and with a single level of processing. If you used a Repair level of 3 for some LP's and 6 for some others you have to do 2 exports, one at 3 and one a 6. I rarely use something other than 3. So this is something you set once and change rarely.

    The metadata from Discogs is saved as part of the files. If Discogs has the track lengths you can use this information to split the tracks as a head start to splitting the tracks. It is approximate and only as accurate as the track lengths entered in Discogs. You have to tweak it. Often this Discogs lookup provides you with options for the various pressings released. Some have the track lengths, some don't. If you are going to split the tracks, choose a variant with the track information in it. You can use the SC software to split the tracks manually as well. Personally I don't. I save out the sides as a Chapterized AAC files so I don't use the SC software to track split for me. I export the files unspilt and use a software called Fission to split the tracks. I have been using Fission for a long time and can do it quickly.

    You can save up to 10 sides to the USB stick or to a device on your network if the SC is hooked up to your network. When your tracks are in shape the SC processes them with the Repair settings chosen and in your format of choice. They are stored directly on the USB stick if you choose that method. If you export them to your network, they are saved in a temporary internal storage area and you are given a link that allows you to download to a network device as zip files. This procession typically takes 3-4 minutes per LP side. But whether the tracks are exported split or unspilt they are in a format where the can be played as is or further edited. When you are finished with your 10 LP sides, you clear the internal storage area and do it all again.

    It may sound complex, but it far from it. This is the easiest method I have found for digitizing files by far.
     
    gmeese34 likes this.
  13. adomanim

    adomanim Active Member

    Location:
    annaba
    I’ve been trying to figure this out for the last 2 hours looking over the documentation and trying many different things.







    Kodi nox
     
  14. GuildF512

    GuildF512 Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Merritt Island Fl
    The latest from Dan. Looks like we are seeing the light at the end of the tunnel.

    Greetings from SweetVinyl – and Happy New Year. As we reflect on this last year we are so grateful to all of you who purchased one of these units – we would not have been able to make it through this year of Covid without your support.


    This is an update on the Plus units – both the SC-1 Plus units in final production and the follow on build of SC-1 and SC-2 Plus models that are on pre-order.


    The major feature set that distinguish the Plus models from the other SugarCube is that a computer or music server when plugged in over USB can treat a Plus unit as an ADC or a DAC – thereby playing music through the SugarCube or recording to a software program like Vinyl Studio on a PC. With that control the SugarCube lets the connected computer act as the USB master and change the sample rate of the DAC or ADC. So the SugarCube will record to a PC and play at CD, MP3 or 96K sample rates that change automatically as the attached computer directs.


    Internally however all SugarCubes run at 192K – and all noise removal functions including Click and Pop removal and the new SVNR noise reduction run only at this sample rate (192K). So when switching between these modes and engaging the SugarCube functions we have had to allow for clocks to be resynchronized and the SugarCube noise functions to be removed from the path when a computer changes to another sample rate. Our goal has been to allow the unit to operate at all these sample rates and in these different modes and still allow the special SugarCube functions to work without glitches or rebooting.


    So the month of December was actively spent in QA with the engineering team verifying and making accommodations for all the test cases that are entailed when trying all the combinations. As of yesterday we have a build of the embedded software that allows this to work smoothly without configuring the SugarCube or rebooting. By the end of this next week after a short New Years break the team thinks they will have a build for the OS which will be the base version to ship on these units. Once these software builds are complete and tested we will be able to finish assembly and package the units.


    So from a production standpoint the 18 units on the assembly bench running burn in have been waiting for engineering to release the production firmware for the on board embedded processors and the base OS which is updated automatically (in case of a factory reset this will be the baseline for the units.) All this software is programmed before finally assembly.

    We had to put off the build of the next 75 units both because our assembly house had too much end of year work and we wanted to make sure that all the QA testing was finished before consignment of the build kit.

    We are really close and we are hoping to have an update in the next two weeks to let you know the first units are shipping and the follow-on boards are in the assembly process.

    Thank you for your continued patience.

    Best,

    -Dan
     
  15. Stereolove

    Stereolove Forum Resident

    Location:
    Melbourne
    Hi Dan, expecting mine in the next week. Potentially stupid question, but, does the unit removes ticks and pops between tracks, as well as the lead-in and run-out groove. My reason for asking, is that the baseline background noise should be pretty much null, and I wondered whether the software looks for anomalies against just music waveforms. Second, if a recording has record pop / ticks noise as part of the original production, does the unit attempt to remove it, or can it recognise it is part of the original recording. A lot of hip-hop / urban records use this style of production. Thanks.
     
  16. Stereolove

    Stereolove Forum Resident

    Location:
    Melbourne
    Potentially stupid question, but, does the unit removes ticks and pops between tracks, as well as the lead-in and run-out groove. My reason for asking, is that the baseline background noise should be pretty much null, and I wondered whether the software looks for anomalies against just music waveforms. Second, if a recording has record pop / ticks noise as part of the original production, does the unit attempt to remove it, or can it recognise it is part of the original recording. A lot of hip-hop / urban records use this style of production. Thanks.
     
  17. DigMyGroove

    DigMyGroove Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Yes it does.
     
    Stereolove likes this.
  18. Stereolove

    Stereolove Forum Resident

    Location:
    Melbourne
    Appreciate the response. Great news.
     
    DigMyGroove likes this.
  19. DigMyGroove

    DigMyGroove Forum Resident Thread Starter

    I purchased a VG++ Copy of Sticky Fingers and found that it was perfect but for a bad scratch in between Wild Horses and Can’t You Hear Me Knocking. With the click repair engaged the very loud noise was thankfully gone.
     
    Dave Mac, Old Zorki II and Stereolove like this.
  20. keiron99

    keiron99 Forum Resident

    Location:
    Stockport, UK
    Yes it does as DigMyGroove points out, but interestingly, you still get the "thump" when the stylus is left in the runout groove, at the end of the album side.
     
    Stereolove likes this.
  21. Stereolove

    Stereolove Forum Resident

    Location:
    Melbourne
    I can live with that
     
  22. Jim0830

    Jim0830 Forum Resident

    I think the end of record "thump" is different in two ways, at least on my turntable. It is both a longer duration and contains much lower frequencies than a typical typical click or pop.

    I had an interesting thing happen when I first got my SugarCube. It was back in the days where I was constantly A/B'ing the results with BYPASS on and off. I was digitizing an LP from the 50's that consisted of Big Band music from the 30's and early 40's. It was sourced from 78's and where it was using the less aggressive noise reduction techniques available 70 years ago there were still audible clicks and pops from the 78RPM source material. I was stunned and pleasantly surprised to find the SC-2 Mini removed many, but not all, of the of the repetitive clicks representing scratches present on the 78's. Bypassing the click and pop removal suddenly I was hearing repeating clicks at at a rate of under once per second. I never expected this to happen all without harming the sound.

    I'm guessing the people getting the new Plus units are in for something special. The regular click and pop removal has certainly exceeded my expectations and I now use it on every record I spin.
     
  23. Sterling1

    Sterling1 Forum Resident

    Location:
    Louisville, KY
    I'm warming up to the SugarCube, meaning I am thinking about buying one. Here's why: over the last decade I have copied most of my LP collection to WAV. files. These files have been filtered to eliminate pops. In comparisons of the files played from iTunes to the LPs played from turntable used in the copying process, I cannot distinguish the digital files from the LPs. In other words digitizing does not impart a digital sounding product. This makes me think the SugarCube is a much quicker means for the desired result, the pleasure of analog's appeals without the distraction of pops.
     
  24. Jim0830

    Jim0830 Forum Resident

    It is by far the easiest way to digitize LPs that I have tried. I have yet to hear any degradation in sound.
     
    JorgeGvb and Sterling1 like this.
  25. clhboa

    clhboa Forum Resident

    Just ordered some new cables to hook this baby up. Please come soon!!!
     
    Stereolove and JorgeGvb like this.

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