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DPS 2.0 Testing (Windows)

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  • #63600
    xaqmusic
    Keymaster

    Hello DPS Insiders!

    DPS 2.0 has now been released!

    UPDATE:  DPS 2.0 for Windows has been released as a free promotional period.  DPS 2.0 for Mac is now available for testing.  This forum thread began as the alpha/beta testing channel.


    Original testing notes are below for archival purposes…

    NOTE:

    • Do not install this unless you are ready to deal with the usual alpha (incomplete) software idiosyncrasies such as crashing, freezing glitching etc.  The installer says beta, but it that is in preparation for a wider public beta program we have planned.
    • Your current Windows DPS activation will work.  However, you may want to de-activate version 1.2.x before installing 2.0.
    • DPS 2.0 and 1.2.x installed side by side (but not running at the same time!) may work but there may be some issues.

    There are still some functions left to complete but we are super excited about what is available!

    • Dynamic Stereo Field Enhancement – Expand the width of your stereo image without loosing important center channel content like snare drums, vocals and sound effects.
    • X/Y Controls for Bass and Treble – The left box is Bass, the right box is Treble.  Move the dot up or down for boost/cut.  Move the dot left/right for frequency.  Just click and drag until it sounds good!
    • Re-built audio processing engine with many optimizations for performance and sound quality.
    • Audio Visualizer – Its fun to see what DPS is doing to the sound.
    • Each output category now has its own list of profiles and hardware outputs – Go to the SETTINGS tab.  Select your output mode (Headphones, Built-In laptop speakers or External speakers) on the left or by clicking the label in each category on the right.
    • Skin-able GUI – The skins folder is in Program Files/Bongiovi Acoustics/DPS 2.0/Skins.  Right now there is only DPSTheme.  You can replace any png file and edit the FontsAndColors text file for all kinds of graphic possibilities.
      • Make the MainBackground.png file transparent to see SET BACKGROUND COLOR option work.
    •  Profiles are now stored in Program Data/Bongiovi Acoustics/<output mode>.
    • Music and Movie modes are available if two profiles have the same name and include a _MUSIC and _MOVIES suffix.

    These features are in the works:

    • A fancy new profile browser (PROFILES tab).
    • In-app purchase.  Currently there is a white space in the ACTIVATION tab that will serve our online store but it is not functional yet.  You can use your normal email and password to activate.
    • A button in SETTINGS tab to choose a new skin.  Maybe we will remove the SET BACKGROUND COLOR option if the Skins browser provides better functionality.
    • Fine tuning of profile volume levels.
    • Removal of .NET installer to make the installer size smaller (if possible).
    • Mouse-over help tips.
    • Offline help
    • Getting Started Wizard

    Use this thread to let me know if you have any trouble.  And we look forward to your feedback!

    #63996
    wxman123
    Participant

    Hi, filled out the survey but did not get the download link.

    #63995
    xaqmusic
    Keymaster

    You should have the link now.  I’m tweaking the alpha delivery mechanism.  I’ve decided to hand deliver the download link when I receive a response from the survey.

    #63994
    jimboden
    Member

    Got the download, thanks. Time to have some fun!

    Just one question. I have Windows 8.1 64 bit, but you don’t show it in the survey. Does that matter? I know Windows 8.1 is different from Windows 8.

    #63993
    hans
    Participant

    Congratulations on the new alpha version!

    I just took a small glimpse at it now, so not much to comment on yet. First thing I noticed is that all output devices default to the virtual DPS device itself (on this pc at last) which means no sound until you manually change it to the actual soundcard. I guess it’s best to exclude DPS completely from the list of output devices or at least *not* choose it by default.

    The limiter settings on your 2nd picture are missing here but I guess that’s intended.

    As you mentioned above it would be nice to have the .NET installer removed, it isn’t needed here anyhow (maybe just link to the microsoft site etc.).

    Sound seems to be fine, although I used a profile not available in 2.0 yet, so it’s not that easy to compare.

    The new design takes a little getting used to so I wait a few days before judging that. 🙂

    All in all I’m impressed, so keep up the good work!

     

     

    #63992
    xaqmusic
    Keymaster

    Jim:  I’ll add 8.1 to the survey.

    Hans:

    What version of Windows are you using?  And what is the installed language?  We have controls in place to exclude the DPS virtual driver from the output device list but that seems to be failing on your machine.  A screenshot of your Windows Sound Control Panel might help.

    The limiter controls you see were from an older version where we exposed some functions internally for tweaking. Those now have default values.

    All:  If there are some profiles you would like to experiment with, email me and I’ll send them to you.

    #63991
    wxman123
    Participant

    Chrome thinks the download is malware.

    #63990
    wxman123
    Participant

    Well, needed to install 2.0 and uninstall twice before Itunes would work (it recognized there was a problem with the audio configuration).  Next issue was setting the correct playback devices.  Not easy and should have a wizard like 1.0.  Finally, I needed to disable my built in speakers in playback devices in order to stop those speakers from playing along with my external speakers, this was not an issue in 1.0.  More to come as I notice things.

    #63989
    hans
    Participant

    @Joe
    Windows 8.1 x64 de.
    The virtual DPS device is called: “Lautsprecher (Digital Power Station)”

    #63988
    hans
    Participant

    Some suggestions:

    1. If DPS is on make the Audio Visualizer show the difference between processed and unprocessed audio in a different color.
    2. Rearrange the tabs by importance/usage rate (yes, probably varies by person). I vote for: home, profiles, settings, activation, about.
    3. Give the 2d sliders and the stereo control at least a name. Not being able to immediately spot what a control is for is unsettling. (I guess tooltips and help are planned but just not done yet.)
    #63987
    xaqmusic
    Keymaster

    Thanks guys.  This all good feedback.  It looks like I will be working late on that help wizard and a manual 🙂

    wxman:  iTunes has a habit of thinking they own the audio system.  We are going to install the latest version and test on our Win 8 machines to see the behavior and recommend a proper setup procedure in the Wizard.

    hans:  Coloring the visualizer shouldn’t be too complex.  I’ll put that on the list of things to try.

    Regarding order of tabs, we feel the best way to arrange them is what is best for getting started as a new user.  So hopefully, with an easy setup, you just turn DPS on.  Then if there are some questions , you go to Settings to set your output.  And while you are there pick some profiles from the list.  Then, if you want more profiles, you have to purchase the software in the Activation tab.  After that you can access the Profiles browser.

    I’ve been kicking around the most aesthetic way to label the controls.  I think one way is to include the labels as part of the background image.  This way, the user can switch from the “basic” skin (with labels) to an “advanced” skin that is cleaner with no labels.

    #63986

    So far…awesome! I forgot how amazing DPS makes everything sound, and now with the Klipsch ProMedia profile complete I’m in heaven.

    For the stereo controls, it’d be nice to adjust the balance within the same window by dragging the blue ball back and forth. My left speaker is closer to me than my right one and I don’t see a way to counter that.

    I think DPS defaulted to off when my computer booted up as well.

    #63985
    jimboden
    Member

    Here’s my first kick at the can:

    DPS 2.0 Alpha Testing Observations

    My computer specs: Full tower CyberPower high-end gaming machine with Intel i7-4770K 3.5-3.9Ghz CPU, 8GB RAM, Sound Blaster Zx sound card, Radeon 4GB R9 290 video card, Windows 8.1 64 bit

    Before installing 2.0, I uninstalled DPS 1.2.3.

    Initial setup kept using SPDIF-Out (Sound Blaster Z) instead of Windows default communications device (Speakers Sound Blaster Z), which was also the device selected in DPS. After fiddling with it a few times, it finally worked.

    When DPS first started, it was turned off, but has been OK since.

    Tried playing music from iTunes and DPS immediately issued a message telling me the trial period was over and I have to purchase it. DPS then switched off. I closed and restarted DPS and it’s working properly.

    Headphone profiles don’t have my headphones (Bose QC15).

    I tried changing the background colour, but it does nothing. What is it supposed to do? I hate the blue with white scheme and can’t figure out what the purpose of fading from top to bottom is.

    I found out that, with headphones, turning the stereo control off gives exactly the same effect as turning it on and dragging the circles all the way out.

    I was playing music from iTunes 11.3.1.2 and got audio drop outs. I’ve never noticed it with DPS 1.2.3. but I don’t often use iTunes. When I backspaced over the same portion of the music, it was OK the second time. I’m suspicious that it might be my headphones causing it, though, and will try another pair. Is anyone else experiencing this problem?

    There’s a change in behaviour from DPS 1.2.3. My Sound Blaster Zx sound card has its own speaker and headphone switching in its control panel. In 1.2.3, I always have to stop and restart DPS when I switch between headphones and speakers. What I’ve been doing is setting DPS to headphones before I stop and restart it so it doesn’t cause the Sound Blaster volume to go to 100%. I normally leave it at about 40% and it has always worked properly. With DPS 2.0, when I have both it and the Sound Blaster set to headphones, then stop DPS, the Sound Blaster’s volume immediately goes to 100%. DPS 1.2.3 did not do this. Also tried setting both to speakers with volume at 40% and the same thing happened when I stopped DPS (i.e. The Sound Blaster volume immediately went to 100% which is a change in behaviour from DPS 1.2.3, which never changed the volume when it was stopped). DPS 1.2.3 does change the volume to 100% if I leave it set to speakers, then restart it and it does not change it if it’s set to headphones.

    I forgot that you can’t copy and paste here for some obscure reason that I forget. When I paste a Word document, I get all kinds of formatting information in the post, which I had to remove. I sure wish you guys would change this.

     

    UPDATE: Just noticed that switching between Music and Movies has no effect, at least with headphones. With DPS 1.2.3 voices were much more noticeable and forward. There were also subtle differences in bass and treble. Just finished playing COD Ghosts for about an hour and there were no audio glitches using the same headphone as with iTunes. I wonder if iTunes has some issues that I’m not aware of.

    Another update: I found out that DPS doesn’t keep all its settings when the computer is restarted. Specifically, I’ve noticed that, if I have it set to Movies, it goes back to Music after a reboot, plus the default Annapolis headphones are set instead of the ones I was using. The speaker setting seem to be OK, though. If I find anything else like this, I’ll update this thread.

    #63984
    xaqmusic
    Keymaster

    Thanks, Jim.  I’d like to summarize the points we will take away from your message.  Let me know if I’m missing anything:

    1)  Check to be sure the current default playback device (not default communications device) is selected in the DPS output device menus on first run.

    2) Be sure all settings are recalled on computer restart (we have seen this too).

    Regarding the other items:

    Music and Movies modes are not currently available for all profiles.  Our new system uses a new profile format that will be compatible across all platforms (Windows, Mac, Android, iOS, Linux etc).  Music and Movies modes will be two separate profiles with the suffix _MUSIC and _MOVIES.  All profiles from the current 1.2.3 version will be available in this new format.

    I will email the Bose profiles to you.  They can be installed manually as per these instructions.

    The Set Background Color feature will work when a skin is enabled that has a transparent background.  The current blue skin (sorry you don’t like the blue…company colors) has a solid background.  I will provide an alternate skin in upcoming builds that take advantage of the background color feature.  I will also provide a Photoshop template so folks can create their own personal skins.

    Regarding automatic volume control – We actually tweaked this based yours and other’s feedback over the years.  And we are happy to continue to tweak it!  Currently the volume control works like this:  When DPS starts up, read the current volume of the default playback device.  Then turn it up to 100%.  When DPS is finished starting, set the level of the Digital Power Station driver to the volume that was read from the default playback device.  When DPS quits, set the default playback device to the volume that the Digital Power Station driver was set to.

    This volume scheme is designed to maintain volume consistency when using keyboard volume control commands.  So there is no apparent jump in volume when you turn on DPS yet you still have the full range of control.  Since the Digital Power Station driver becomes the default device when DPS is on, it receives the volume control commands from the keyboard.  When DPS quits, control returns to the hardware default playback device.  It’s super confusing, I know.

    1.2.3 has a similar behavior except for when booting into Headphones mode.  Then the hardware device is not set to 100%, but is kept at its current volume.  Would you like to see this same behavior for Headphones mode in 2.0?

    Or perhaps a checkbox in the settings window for “Adjust device volume at startup”?  We are open to suggestions since this is very much a user preference.

    #63983
    jimboden
    Member

    Hi Joey:

    Thanks for your comments. I’ll review them and get back to you later today. I like the idea of 2 profiles for music and movies. Thanks for the Bose headphone profile too.

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