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Audirvana 3.5 for Mac - standalone vs iTunes Integrated Mode

Discussion in 'audio' started by ToTo Man, May 13, 2021.

  1. ToTo Man

    ToTo Man the band not the dog

    I recently downloaded the free trial of AV 3.5, having used AV+ 2.6.x for several years. I always use AV+ 2.6.x in iTunes Integrated Mode because I find it runs so much faster and more efficient and I prefer the iTunes GUI and Remote app to the Audirvana GUI. However I thought I should give AV 3.5 a try as a standalone player without iTunes integration to see if it's improved any.

    The v3.5 GUI is much improved over v2.6.x IMO, but it takes ages (more than 2 minutes!) for the player to initially launch, and it's still very sluggish when I'm browsing my Library. The AV app on my iPod touch is also very sluggish and takes ages to display the list of Artists, Albums, etc. It's so slow it's almost unusable. When I switch back to iTunes Integrated Mode the speed and responsiveness is exponentially better and provides a far more efficient and enjoyable user experience.

    Is this because: a) the machine I'm running AV on is under-specced (a 2010 Mac Mini C2D 2.66GHz with 8GB); b) my music library is abnormally large (40,000 songs occupying 2TB space on an external firewire SATA HDD); or c) is AV simply not as speedy as iTunes regardless of machine spec and library size?

    If I install AV 3.5 on a 2012 Mac Mini i7 2.6GHz with 16GB RAM and run it in standalone mode, will it rival the speed/efficiency of running it in iTunes Integrated Mode?

    I should state that I'm perfectly happy to run AV in iTunes Integrated Mode from a sound quality POV. I've tried hard to listen out for sonic differences between the two modes and I honestly can't hear any. Neither can I hear any difference between that and running iTunes on its own (I clearly lack golden ears!). My main reason for running AV is access to the AU plugins.
    Last edited: May 13, 2021
    tuga likes this.
  2. Heckyman

    Heckyman pfm Member

    Can't answer your Q, but did you try disabling "Rescan network folders at each start" in the AV library settings? That should speed up the start up.

    I use AV 3.5 on the M1 mini with the A+ remote app and it's as fast as any other app or service. But my library is small and external HDD is a fast drive connected via a fast interface (Thunderbolt or USB 3).
    sq225917 and ToTo Man like this.
  3. ToTo Man

    ToTo Man the band not the dog

    Yep, that option is deselected, and according to AV the last iTunes folder sync took place three days ago, i.e. the first time I installed AV 3.5:



    I haven't clicked on any of the three 'Maintenance' buttons yet as I'm not entirely sure what they do, any ideas?:

  4. Heckyman

    Heckyman pfm Member

    Not sure what they do exactly as I've never needed them, but worth a click?
  5. ToTo Man

    ToTo Man the band not the dog

    Defragging the database has reduced the size of the .sqlite file from 2.4GB to 1.8GB and AV now launches in a matter of a few seconds instead of minutes :). I don't know exactly what it's done but it seems to have fixed the sluggishness. Fingers crossed it stays that way!...
  6. ToTo Man

    ToTo Man the band not the dog

    After rebooting the Mini the time it takes for AV to open has gone up to around 35 seconds.

    EDIT - 35 seconds is the time it takes for the first launch after a machine reboot. If I quit AV and then reopen it only takes around 9 seconds, - so all seems good
  7. Venus Isle

    Venus Isle Member

    Yes, I too find Audirvana very slow, compared to the others...
    ToTo Man likes this.
  8. SteveS1

    SteveS1 I heard that, pardon?

    AV 3.5 runs fine on my 2014 Mini MacOS 11.2.2 and 8GB RAM accessing 1000 or so albums on local 1TB drive. The Remote App works well too on an old iPad Mini. Same content flies on this M1 16GB Air.
    ToTo Man likes this.
  9. ToTo Man

    ToTo Man the band not the dog

    I was under the impression that AV v3.5 was being replaced by AV Studio this Sunday 16th May. Anyway I purchased my license for v3.5 this afternoon at 4.30pm. I re-visited the website an hour later and the option to buy v3.5 was gone, so it looks like I placed my order just in the nick of time!...
  10. ToTo Man

    ToTo Man the band not the dog

    I've been using AV v3.5 in standalone mode for the last couple of weeks and am struggling to warm to its GUI. The iOS app is very buggy (when I click on Artists or Albums, for example, I often just get a spinning refresh wheel and nothing displays). My biggest issue, however, is the links to many of my albums are 'broken'. In other words, when I try to play certain albums, I get an error message saying the tracks cannot be located. All of my music is stored neatly in an iTunes folder on an external HDD that's connected directly to my Mac (i.e. no networking or streaming involved), so I don't understand why AV isn't able to locate certain tracks/albums. Does anyone else experience this issue? Am I using the wrong synchronisation method (see images in post #3)?

    EDIT - There is no problem when I'm running AV in 'iTunes Integrated Mode', only in standalone mode.
  11. flutteringwow

    flutteringwow Platinum Ears

    I gave up with Audirvana, so buggy, crashey on the MAC especially with folder scanning, it was more infuriorating than pleasurable to use.

    Moved to Roon, which although not perfect, is less buggy.

    SQ though was better with Audirvana.

    I have a copy of the new one on my computer at the moment, and it could only manage to find 63 out of the 5,000 albums I have on my NAS drive, Roon and even simple Naim software picks them all up fine.
  12. Alex S

    Alex S carbon based lifeform

    Is that the Audirvana Studio you're trying? The old version has been bug free and quick for me with a 3tb library on both an underpowered Mac Mini and overpowered iMac.
  13. ToTo Man

    ToTo Man the band not the dog

    If that's directed at me, no I'm not running the new Studio version, I'm running the previous AV 3.5.44.

    How do you have AV setup to locate your library, do you use "First Method (Monitored Folders)" or Second Method (iTunes Library Synchronisation)"?

    Also, is your AV library file stored on your OS boot drive or is it stored on the external drive on which your music files are located?
  14. Alex S

    Alex S carbon based lifeform

    It was directed at flutteringwow.

    Anyway, I use 'monitored folders' and have 3 external USB Volumes (2x1tb full and 1x2tb half full, + 1tb FireWire on the Mini). Scanning at each start is unticked but they synch automatically when I add stuff. Qobuz is connected and always loads unless the internet is down. It's never crashed but I did have a problem with duplicates once and can't remember how I solved it.

    Just to add, from the iMac I run a 10m Amazon Basics USB cable and from the Mini, that is closer to the DAC, a 1m fancy thing. There is no difference in sound quality between the two.
    ToTo Man likes this.
  15. ToTo Man

    ToTo Man the band not the dog

    Removing the 'iTunes Synchronisation method' and adding the location of my music folder to 'Monitored Folders' appears to have resolved the issue of missing files. I have of course lost my iTunes playlists but I can repopulate these easy enough in AV so I'm not too bothered about that. The iOS app is still however very laggy at times. For example, when I click on an Artist at random, sometimes their Albums display almost instantly whilst other times I can be waiting upwards of 30 seconds for something to happen. Overall though it does seem a bit speedier and more reliable than when I had the Library set to 'iTunes Synchronisation Method'.
  16. Alex S

    Alex S carbon based lifeform

    I may be wrong but I think the app speed is down to broadband.
  17. ToTo Man

    ToTo Man the band not the dog

    Seems I spoke too soon, - the computer app is now playing up! For many Artists, when I click on an Artist to display their Albums, the page it takes me to is empty, no albums or tracks are listed. I've checked in case I had Sorting Filters turned on by accident but I don't. The weird thing is the albums and tracks are showing and can be played in the iOS app but not the main computer app. I'm flummoxed!...
  18. manicatel

    manicatel pfm Member

    I also had a major cock-up with the library/ sync stuff due to an Audirvana software update a while back. Something to do with the metadata I guess, but I dont have the chops with computer stuff to work out exactly how to remedy it. I asked on the computeraudiophile site but didn’t get any help.
    Thought I’d try Roon & hey presto, all is well again.
    Haven’t bothered with AV since.
    Yes, Roon is not cheap but it “just works” & after 18 months or so of use, I won’t be going back to anything else.
    ToTo Man likes this.
  19. ToTo Man

    ToTo Man the band not the dog

    I don't stream so something like Roon would be wasted on me. I also hate the idea of forking out on a monthly subscription, which is why I decided to buy AV just before it was replaced with AV Studio. I'm actually still perfectly happy with iTunes having used it since the day it was released, I only piggyback AV onto it to take advantage of on-the-fly sample rate switching and AU plugins. Given iTunes gets such a bad rap for being "so last decade" I thought I'd give the AV GUI another try but my recent experience hasn't changed my mind, if anything it has reinforced just how unbreakable and intuitive iTunes and its associated iOS Remote app is to use!
  20. Alex S

    Alex S carbon based lifeform

    Stick with it. I should think my chances of spotting an SQ difference between iTunes and AV or anything else in a blind test are about zero.

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